Inukami

July 28, 2007

If you’re a dog lover and an anime otaku then you should try watching Inukami. Just kidding. If you’re neither of those 2, you could still watch this series. Like me. My main reason for watching it as usual because it is partly a comedy genre. And secondly, I’m curious to know what this whole show is about.
 
Literally translated as ‘Dog God’ (note the palindrome too), this 26 episode series has some ecchi and partial nudity stuffs. Albeit it won’t amount so much to a hentai genre, but those who can’t even tolerate a little bit of ‘exposed skin’, then it’s best to stay away from this. Besides that, it’s your usual supernatural action adventure with some romance in it.
 
So what are this ‘Dog Gods’ or more appropriately Inukamis? They’re not exactly humans (duh!) but they take a form of one because they look much better in a bishie form. Haha. Just kidding. They’re dog-like demons in their actual form. But they’re not evil demons at all. In fact, they help and protect humans from other evil demons and spirits. However, not every human being can use them. Those who have contracted with the Inukamis are called Inukami-tsukai (Inukami users) and just like men’s best friend, the 2 would become like some sort of a super demon-battling team to protect the city. Something like that.
 
Thus we have this teenager guy Keita Kawahira, who comes from a line of Inukami-tsukai descendants. But he is considered a ‘failure’ in his line of family because of his laid-back attitude. Though Keita has an Inukami of his own, the green-haired Youko, this guy is a pervert! Yeah, this guy likes to flirt around with other girls, or at least have the thought of it. But with such a pretty Inukami like Youko, why does Keita still go around flirting? Probably he thinks that since Youko is a dog (the female term is derogatory, mind you), Keita’s wild imagination has got him thinking that if he ‘do it’ with her, he’ll have puppies as his children instead of normal homo sapiens. I suppose it’s normal for a guy to want to have a normal relationship with a normal human being girl. Luckily, Youko’s always there to stop him. Since Keita isn’t a round-the-clock pervert, Keita has his good sides too like he cares for the one he loves and tries his best to help those in need.
 
Therefore it’s kinda odd if you notice that Youko’s the one who’s having Keita on a ‘leash’ rather than the other way round. Anyway, it serves Keita right and it keeps him in line too. Just like in the first episode whereby we see Keita’s raging hormones of pervertness. Instead of accompanying Youko to go see the sakuras blooming, he’s off doing what he loves doing best, flirting. As expected, Youko doesn’t tolerate it all and uses her Shukuchi, 1 of her 2 magical powers, to magically teleport Keita somewhere else. Thing is, she only teleported Keita and not his clothes! Yup, as ‘divine’ punishment, Keita’s naked in public! The policeman thinks he’s a flasher or some pervert of some sort and proceeds to lock him up in the police station’s cell. Serves him right alright. So everytime you see a guy naked, you’ll see that his crotch area is being ‘censored’ by a picture of an elephant’s head. You know what it means, right? And if ‘it’ is bigger, than a mammoth’s head will be in place.
 
So as Keita is languishing in his cell, he meets other perverted guys there as well. Uh-huh some muscular guy who is some sort of a lingerie thief and he even wears one on his head! Then there’s some magician guy who’s a peeping tom and a bespectacled salaryman who seems to find his ‘thrill’ by tying himself up in a tight rope. Yeah, I wonder how he moves in a position like that. Anyway, the trio think that Keita’s part of them and thinks he’s been doing a good job. Above all, they consider him to be their boss! Of course Keita would deny that he’s part of their gang and their whatever sick ideologies. Youko visits him and reminds Keita about their contract thingy. Yeah, between the 2 of them, the head is the one with a tail. Hehehe.
 
But Keita gets to be ‘released’ from his prison cell when a special investigator, Karina Shirou, appears and offers them a job to catch and stop an evil spirit. This Karina guy has got some sort of a jagged light saber as his weapon. To cut things short, that evil spirit is a pervert and because he himself is a loser at love, he has grudges against couples who are in love with each other. Yup, he’s making clothes disappear! And he activates is by pinching his nipples! Eww!!! Thing is, he only make the clothes of men disappear, much to Keita’s disappointment as he’s so looking forward to see a bevy of bare naked ladies on the street. But after some words like how girls won’t hate the guy they love if they see them naked and that nobody is afraid of being naked, Keita strips himself naked and while that perverted evil spirit is distracted, Youko uses her Dai Jaen (her other magical ability which is a stream of super flame) on him. Though the perverted evil spirit has been cleansed, Keita finds himself in prison again because the police mistook him as that naked pervert running around earlier on. Too bad.
 
So most of the episodes are gonna be something like this with a little pervertness in it. And while the duo tackles some evil spirits, they bond and get closer in a way while meeting other characters along the way. Like in episode 2 whereby Keita refuses to give Youko some skinship thingy but they’re being called by Keita’s grandma and her Inukami, Hake, to some temple whereby the male monks have been possessed by dog spirits. And the only way to calm them all is to have skinship with them like taking them for walks and petting their bellies. Keita’s regretting that he didn’t do this on Youko and has to do it on muscular hairy men. Feeling lika gay, huh. Hahaha. And because Keita’s so good with them, those dog-possessed guys calmed themselves down when they’re in a rage as they’re attacking the townspeople that night because 1 of their member has been taken hostage by the townspeople. Soon the dog spirits has been appeased and released their male hosts but it seems that Keita has been acting like a dog ever since.
 
So more Inukamis are introduced in episode 3. Keita’s cousin, Kaoru, must be a real popular guy because he himself has 10 Inukamis! All his Inukamis love him. You could say he’s got a harem. But unlike Keita, Kaoru is more responsible and not a pervert. Kaoru’s got strict team leader Sendan, mysteriously powerful Nadeshiko, shy mangaka Igusa, brutish Tayune, twins Imari and Sayoka, miko priestess and fortune telling Furano, mature and studious Gokyouya, good sketch artist and ‘no eyes’ Tensou, and the youngest of the pack Tomohane (reminds me of Shippo from Inu Yasha). But you’ll keep wondering where is this Kaoru guy because he won’t be showing his face for the next several episodes. Thus you could say Kaoru’s got a harem but it seems Keita too wants to flirt with Kaoru’s 10, especially Nadeshiko whom Keita thinks is more ‘refined’ than his Youko. Of course that puppies as his children vision comes to mind everytime he thinks a little further, he shivers at every thought of it. Of course Youko doesn’t really like Sendan and the others except Nadeshiko and can be seen as loggerheads sometimes.
 
Here, the owner of the amusement pool contacts our Inukamis because there is some evil spirit in the form of a water droplet which can burn away clothes. You can’t have any episodes in this series without any hints of pervertness, can’t you? When Kaoru’s 10 Inukamis stand in some line or position to combine their powers, they’ll say some whatever gibberish lines (sounds like one to me okay) and then together their powers would magnify and some super blast would occur and most evil spirits will be destroyed. I also need to mention that during battles, not only Youko does the fighting as Keita do chips in. Keita has this little small explosive frogs which he throws at evil spirits by saying a systematic and pre-determined lines. Yup, it’s a double meaning alright. The word ‘kaeru’ in Japanese can both mean a frog or to return (telling the evil spirits to return to where they came from).
 
But after the job is done, Keita is happy because Hake promises him to send over a cute Inukami to help him with his household chores for 1 week. Who could it be? Why it’s Nadeshiko! Dreams do come true. I smell jealousy and competition here. But it seems that in episode 4, Sendan and the other Inukamis are not too fond of Nadeshiko and plans to get rid of her by letting Nadeshiko stay with Keita since that perverted guy is so happy with her. But since Youko is around, there’s gonna be a little problem, so Sendan suggests to get rid of Youko. But even though Sendan and co outnumbered Youko 9 to 1, it seems Youko is more powerful and defeats and wounds them all easily, even if they are in their beast form. But it ended when Nadeshiko steps in to stop them. Well, it seems Youko too ‘respects’ Nadeshiko and decides to stop before any one of them became dog meat. With that, they all made up, become friends and went home.
 
A flashback episode 5 tells how Keita and Youko met. A young Keita couldn’t careless about things because he was so happy he was gonna get an Inukami. So he went to some temple with powerful magical barriers only to see a beautiful Youko there, who’s surprised that he doesn’t remember her. Since and Inukami-tsukai and an Inukami has to make a contract by exchange vows, it seems Youko isn’t the kind which listens to her master and proceeds to torture Keita with her magic. Yup, she even make him do whatever her whims and fancies are. Since Keita is fed up by it, Youko ‘merajuk’ and fled to the city. Though Keita manages to find her at some building rooftop, he gives her 1 more chance to be his Inukami or else. She of course chose the latter. With that, Keita unleasehes some secret item in a backpack that Hake gave to him earlier on but since Youko steals it and opens it herself, she got freaked out and scared. Yup, Youko’s afraid of dogs! And while Keita’s gonna use this to his advantage, evil spirits seem to be gathering and is attacking them. Youko then uses this opportunity to her advantage and tells Keita to make a contract with her and be his master. No choice, Keita does and a dog collar appears around Keita’s neck as a sign of the contract and Youko proceeds to wallop those evil spirits easily with her super powers. Youko has used to much of her powers but Keita still manages to give Youko some water which shows that he’s still concern for her. You could say the 2 started bonding after that. But it’s a love-hate relationship because back in present time, Youko blows her top when he finds Keita’s erotic DVDs.
 
Because in the previous battle, Youko humiliated Tomohane by stealing her kiddie panties, she plans to get her revenge by making some chocolate cake in episode 6. However, Tomohane finds out that Youko’s gone out and won’t be in so soon. Unfortunately, Keita’s in and he already gulped down that cake, much to Tomohane’s horror. At the same time, Karina appears and is seen chasing some little weasel (looks like that one from Mahou Sensei Negima) with powers to stuck things together. With that and the laxative chocolate cake in Keita’s stomach, Keita and Tomohane are stucked together. Yeah, Keita’s having stomach problems from time to time. They continue their chase with the weasel in the supermart and his hilarious to see Keita and Karina got stuck with Sendan, Furano and Tayune at the mart. Yeah, Karina’s got 1 hand on Tayune’s breast and the other on Furano’s while his face is on Sendan’s ahem ahem. Not only that, he’s butt is stuck with Keita’s butt as well and Keita needs to go to the toilet as he can’t hold much longer. Hahaha. Bad day for Karina. Tomohane who’s the only who didn’t get stuck then chases the weasel till some rail tracks. The weasel slips and 2 trains are approaching. Tomohane sums up her courage to dive down to save it but used up her powers. Luckily Keita, who has been freed, arrives in time to save them both. So some talk here and there as Tomohane now has a more favourable view of Keita as Karina allows her to keep the weasel as her pet. Keita then wants to have his fill of pervertness by groping Sendan and Tayune but Youko arrives just in time to give him his usual beating.
 
Youko and Keita visit the hot springs in episode 7 and met a two-tailed travelling cat named Tomekichi who’s searching for missing statues. Uh-huh, more of Keita’s pervertness with some fanservice. In short, some old couple in ghosts form who’re looking for some treasures attached themselves to Keita’s back and in a way possessed him. Since Keita’s not himself, he’s saying things which are pissing Youko off, in which she uses her Dai Jaen to burn the ghost couple and Keita in her rage. It seems the ghost couple is looking for an old Buddhist statue, which is also what Tomekichi is searching for. And if you think that scene in the end seems ambiguously hentai, yeah it is. Keita’s just giving Youko a feet massage. Seems pretty convincing, isn’t it.
 
While Youko thinks her tail may be causing her extra weight in episode 8, some hyped up passionate guy, Naoki Kawarazaki wants Youko to be his model for his otaku comic. Youko was gonna accept it until Naoki makes a comparison of Youko’s tail of a raccoon’s. Even he tries to bribe Keita by setting up a date between him and Youko in exchange for a week’s worth of bread. That guy can be easily bought over. Anyway, some wooden chicken with cosplay powers appear and as usual Karina giving chase, puts on some embarrassing anime cosplay costumes on the duo. Plus, they can’t seem to take off the outfits and the effects only wear off in 2 hours, and leaving the victim naked of course. When Naoki comes in at the right moment, it seems he and the chicken click because the chicken can read his fanatic cosplay mind and with that Naoki goes round cosplaying the town with his new found powers. Finally Keita confronts Naoki and the 2 battle it out. It ended in a draw as the chicken’s power is all used up. Karina then takes it back with him. Oh oh. A naked Keita and that policeman. Here we go again.
 
On request of his cousin, Keita and Youko visits Kaoru’s home to take care of his Inukamis in episode 9. You know how it’s like, right? Keita and his pevertness are like a pair of gloves. It’s his trademark. Of course, Youko gives him the ultimatum that if he does something perverted, they’ll have to leave. But Keita says otherwise. Yup, Keita isn’t being a pervert, or is he trying his best to refrain? Yeah, the girls try to seduce him with their traps but it has no effect. Also, those 3 perverted guys somehow escaped from prison and are terrorizing the girls with their perverted fantasies. Youko blows them away with her Dai Jaen but the hole in the wall causes Igusa’s manga sketchbook to fly out of it. Keita saves it which causes Igusa to have more favourable view of Keita. With that, Keita continues with his help around the house and since there isn’t any pervertness coming from him, Youko heads home herself. With Youko gone, Keita now becomes happy as he strips naked and decides to join in the bath with Kaoru’s 10. Yeah, it’s all part of his plan. Unfortunately, this was another trap set by Youko as they realize his true form and beat the crap out of him. Some things never change. And since news that Kaoru’s coming home, Keita and Youko soon heads home but some perverted remark pisses off Youko as she gives him another Shukuchi which lands him naked in prison alongside his 3 perverted comrades.
 
Another flashback episode in episode 10 but is more on Hake and Keita’s grandma. When grandma was a young girl then, she was desparate to contract with an Inukami to fight a Shinigami who’s terrorizing her village. But not a single Inukami wanted to. Hake saw her determination and decides to follow her. And because of her strong will and never give up till the end attitude, Hake then decided to become her Inukami, which lasts till this day. Uh-huh it seems Inukamis live longer than human beings and don’t age too. Perhaps it’s that 7 dog years equivalent to 1 human year. Ah well, back in present tim, that perverted Keita is even trying to flirt with a ghost! Any young female will do, huh.
 
In episode 11, Keita’s grandma enters him in some spirits tournament but some spirit posseses Keita and makes him feel tired. And the rest of the Inukamis think it’s their fault that Keita is in this predicament and tries to ‘cure’ him. Like Tayune who punched him because she thought he touched her back or Igusa who ran away after bumping into him. Uh-huh, Igusa tries to cure him using her magical girl powers and even dresses like one. To her embarrassment, Youko and Tomohane caught her in the act as Igusa quickly runs away. And grandma has place a substantial bet on Keita. He can’t loose now. Well, it seems pretty ironic because Keita won his matches by default or something unfortunate befalls on his opponents. All without any effort or lifting a finger. But that evil spirit leaves Keita’s body when Youko shove some special fruit down his throat. Now ready to take on his opponent in the finals, which looks like a harmless stuffed rabbit, Keita is feeling pretty good and confident. That is, until the rabbit turned an evil looking monster and easily beats the crap out of Keita. Though he lost, it seems that grandma had bet on Keita to lose in the final and is enjoying her cruise with Hake while Keita becomes the Inukamis’ servant. Too bad Igusa. That magical girl thingy still doesn’t work.
 
Episodes 12-13 are a little more serious because a guy named Sebastian, who’s the butler of the Shindou family has come to seek assistance from them. In short, the Shindou family long ago made a contract with a Shinigami called Boryoku No Umi to be wealthy. In exchange of that, on every 20th birthday, he returns to take a life of 1 family member until they’re all dead. And now there is only 1 member left, a girl named Kei and tomorrow is her birthday. Kei seems dejected and gloomy. Who wouldn’t if they know that tomorrow’s their last day on Earth. But Boryoku No Umi appears a day earlier and he had a short battle with Keita and Youko. Looks like the duo are no match for him as his blasts evaporates Kei’s mansion and will be back tomorrow for the ultimate kill. With that, Keita with his full determination decides to protect Kei.
 
So the day arrives and Keita is gonna have his match with Boryoku No Umi inside a boxing ring in an airship. Well, at least nobody on the ground will get hurt but a boxing ring? So as they fight, more flashbacks, more words of encouragement as Boryoku No Umi seems to have the upper hand. Until Keita releases his explosive frogs from his mouthpiece, boxing glove and under his pants!!! Woah! He can shoot with it too! The explosion causes the airship to explode and is gonna crash. Sebastian takes Kei and leaps out of it to safety below. Boryoku No Umi still thinks he has the upper hand but Keita reveals that he too has a trump card. Youko, that is. Youko now transforms herself into a terrifying creature and rips Boryoku No Umi apart with her claws. Youko has never revealed this form to Keita before as she doesn’t want him to hate her. But no choice, Youko is gonna send Boryoku No Umi to hell. Don’t play play. As the airship is gonna crash, Youko grabs a barely conscious Keita and flies away to safety on the beach below.
 
And if you’re wondering when that Kaoru guy is gonna show up, he does now. Yup, after halfway through the series he finally makes his appearance as he waits on the shore with his Inukamis how he has hope that Keita will be alright. Though Kei is very grateful, Sebastian reveals that with Boryoku No Umi’s demise, all the assets of the Shindou family have disappeared. But I guess it’s better to live happily in poverty than to live in fear wealthily. But there’s another bad news for Keita and Youko. That airship has crashed into their home! Yup, they’re homeless. From now on, those 2 will live at a makeshift tent near a stream under a bridge. Yeah, and they befriended a kappa there too. I thought this kappa would play an important role but I find that throughout the series, it’s just a side role and doesn’t amount to anything much. Why won’t Keita and Youko crash at Kaoru’s mansion? Probably the Inukamis know of his pervertness, that’s why.
 
But it seems in episode 14, Youko’s father, Dai Youko, is going to be awaken as the sealing spell is weakening as mentioned by Hake. Yup, Dai Youko must be some fearsome evil force with tremendous powers that wrecked havoc on Earth before, that’s why they had him sealed in the first place. We also find out that Youko isn’t an Inukami but a fox spirit, which is supposed to be an enemy of the Inukamis. Though Youko felt bad for not telling Keita at first, Keita doesn’t mind all that and says that he’s still contracted to her and nothing between them has changed, making Youko feeling a little better. But Youko sense her father’s awakening and rushes to the place where he was sealed 300 years ago. There are other weird forests animals trying to reseal him but it’s not working. Dai Youko tries to persuade Youko to free him but Youko tells him how happy she is with Keita and such, which prompts Dai Youko to say that he’ll never allow her to have a relationship with a human being. With that, Youko successfully reseals Dai Youko. Back home, Youko rushes to Keita, hugs him and says how she loves him. Aww…
 
A raccoon named Tanuki decides to repay his gratitude to Keita when the latter saved him several years ago in episode 15 by giving him a bottle of pills, in which Keita will fall in love with the first thing he sets his eyes on. Of course, Keita wants it, Youko disapproves of it as they try and grab the bottle. A pill got into Keita’s throat and Youko tricked him to open his eyes. Since there’s no effect, Tanuki ran away crying thinking that the pill may be ineffective. Well, Keita soon decides to have his fun as he dashes off into the city. First Keita tries to hit it with some school girls but a group of old ladies passed by and smothered him with their love. Then a group of young housewives but several macho men jogged passed by and gave him their love. Finally, Keita saw Nadeshiko but got hit by a bike and when he comes to, he saw Sendan, Tomohane, Imari and Sayoka. Yup, those 4 actually started to fight over him! Keita is happy but that thought about having puppies as children made him have second thoughts. Good thing is, the pill’s effect soon ran out and Sendan gave him an uppercut.
 
Later as Keita is hiding behind a mailbox, he’s surprised that the mailbox comes to life and accidentally drops a pill into it. Why it’s Karina. What is he doing in there. Anyway, Karina fell in love with the other mailbox. Haha. Youko finally manages to find Keita and is blasting him with her Dai Jaen and orders him to hand over the pills. Since Keita isn’t giving up, he swallows the entire bottle and with that, the whole world, man, woman and animals rush to him. It’s a stampede. That night, Tanuki brings a battered Keita back to their place and Keita admits he was wrong to use the pills in the first place. Therefore he concludes, that if he’s gonna pick up girls, might as well use his own power to do so. Of course either way, it’s not what Youko wants to hear as she sets him on fire. Hmmm… So maybe why that pill didn’t work on Keita and Youko in the first place, could it be because they’re already in love with each other? Maybe. Their daily quarellings make them as though they’re like husband and wife.
 
More beach, sun and swimsuits in episode 16 as the elusive Kaoru sends his Inukamis to the beach on a hot summer and invites Keita and Youko too. While Igusa is telling a ghost story, Tayune got scared which prompts everyone to think that the tough girl may be afraid of such silly stories and proceed to tease her. With that, Tayune beats up everyone as everyone including Youko teams up against her and somehow got an innocent Igusa dragged into it all. Thus the girls are plotting their revenge on Tayune. Something about scaring her and taking a pic when she’s crying. Hey, even Inukami can get nasty sometimes. Their plan seems to work out fine as Tayune in her panic is knocking down trees in her path. This causes Furano, Tensou and Gokyouya to notice a secret door. As they head down basement, they saw some figure lying in some ice chamber. But because they’re freaked out by it, they ran out. Well, that mannequin that’s chasing them is actually for real and isn’t part of their plans. Tayune manage to reach the main house and saw Kaoru there. But she realized that it’s Keita as he destroys the mannequin with his explosive frogs. So after some words of comfort, as usual Tayune has a more favourable view of Keita as the latter mentions how if Inukamis are fighting among themselves will attract low level spirits, which was what happened. When all the Inukamis have gathered and made up, Keita is back to his perverted ways and suggests to take a hot bath together to commemorate their reconciliation only to be hit with a frying pan from all of them.
 
Episode 17-18 introduces another villain, Sekidousai. You just gotta love this guy’s voice. If this guy’s voice seems familiar, that’s because he’s Norio Wakamoto, the same person who did the voice over for Onsokumaru in 2×2=Shinobuden. Anyway, Keita, Youko and Nadeshiko gets sucked into a painting and into Sekidousai’s world. It seems Sekidousai and Karina are related. Though they look the same, Sekidousai has blonde hair and is more of a pervert. Yup, this guy’s a flasher wannabe as he doesn’t wear any pants. You’ll see his mammoth alright everytime he flashes open his cape. Sekidousai has Karina hostage and if they want to rescue him, they’ve got to come get him. So some talk between Youko and Nadeshiko about Kaoru and Nadeshiko blushing everytime she thinks of him. Yeah, that girl really loves Kaoru.
 
Also some flashback how Kaoru and Karina team up to fight Sekidousai with Kaoru manage to wound him a little. Then there’s this weird challenges whereby Keita is up against several macho men. And there’s 1 part a macho man even ccidentally kissed him on his lips! Meanwhile, Youko and Nadeshiko manage to find Sekidousai’s hideout while Kaoru and Karina comes to and plans to break free. Though they’re separated, they had planned to do so at the same time. After managing to do so, Youko is teleported to a church whereby Keita is now challenging some macho man in a wedding dress by slapping each other’s chest! How unsightly. Karina faces off with Sekidousai’s robot, Xanthippe, who has a drill on his crotch! Don’t ever get penetrated by it. In the end, the gang got reunited, much to Nadeshiko’s relief that Kaoru’s very much well and alive. But it seems all this was just part of Sekidousai’s plan to test them all and plans to use their power to ressurect himself. Uh-huh. This sicko wants to change the world into one without any restrictions (read: no pants) as he flashses his mammoth. Real sick guy.
 
So the battle continues as Keita, Youko and Kaoru take on Sekidousai but couldn’t get close to him. Then a funny part whereby Keita tripped and his face fell flat into Sekidousai’s crotch! Disgusting. Eventually Keita and Kaoru aimed and cracked the sky which brings them back to Sekidousai’s base. But Sekidousai uses a bubble to trap them and suck out their powers. With that, the machine is also able to reveal what they are thinking (what else for Keita) but it overloads as it the machine soon stops. Sekidousai remembers his objective to return to the world, and that is to get his revenge on Dai Youko, who has defeated him before. While Xanthippe holds them off, Sekidousei manages to flee into the real world. Our quartet manage to come out into the real world only to find Kaoru’s other Inukami’s waiting for him. But by that time Sekidousai has wrecked havoc among the city people causing unhappiness wherever he goes.
 
Another round of battle ensued and our heroes’ power seems ineffective. Remember that wooden chicken? Yeah, it looks like it belongs to Sekidousai as he uses it to change Keita into some swan ballerina outfit. Also Xanthippe is now giant size (which mean his drill is also big) and is causing mayhem. As things look bleak, suddenly Naoki leading a crowd of weirdos appear to save the day. Yup, even though they’re all weird they still love this city as they topple Xanthippe. I don’t get this part. That peeping tom guy seems to steal some magic book from Sekdousai, then tosses it away, which lands in Karina’s hands, after which Keita lands on him, and that wooden chicken soon retrieves the book and gives it back to Sekidousai. Huh? While Sekidousai retreats and happiness returns to the town, Youko thanks Naoki as Kaoru does with his Inukamis. But why is Nadeshiko looking sad? That’s because in the closing scenes, we see Kaoru collaborating with Sekidousai on something as the 2 meet up. Oh oh. Is this guy evil all along? Nadeshiko’s there too but she seems unhappy about it. Still waters run deep.
 
But that cliffhanger takes a breather because in episode 19 Kaoru’s Inukamis are arguing among themselves about their ranking. Currently, Sendan is at top spot while Tomohane is at the other end. And it seems the rest don’t want the twins to be ahead of them. Since Kaoru isn’t gonna rank them, who is? To cut things short, Keita is going to. But Keita doesn’t know about this yet. While he along with Youko and Tomohane are walking home, a large jar comes rolling their way. Youko thinks it would be a good idea for them to have their bath in it and orders Keita to carry it back for them. Soon they meet Furano who’s gonna strip in front of Keita. Yup, it’s a crowd puller. I don’t really remember but it seems that whatever pun words they say, the jar will glow and will bring out something. In this case, Tensou, followed by Imari, Sayoka, Gokyouya, Tayune and Igusa.
 
Back home, Keita hears the Inukamis explanation and seems pretty excited about it. But Karina decides that this jar is dangerous and is going to take it away when Keita knocks him out and decides to have his fun with it. Thus Keita says that they have to serve him if they want to be rank and use the jar (some perverted harem idea he got). But each time the jar seems to grant some twisted wish based on the pun and play on words they said. Finally when it’s Igusa’s turn, she can’t help but saying how hentai Keita is which ends up with Keita and Karina naked and in each other’s arms. Yeah, totally misunderstood situation. They think he likes this kinda of stuff. With that, they realizes it’s useless to depend on Keita and is gonna decide by their own strength when Sendan and Nadeshiko arrives. Sendan ticks them off for fighting over something this petty while Nadeshiko is more gentle in her persuasion saying how Kaoru wouldn’t want them to fight over their rankings as they realized their mistake. So if you’re wondering where Youko is all this time, we see that Keita has tied her up real good prior to this and now since Youko has managed to free herself, she proceeds to Dai Jaen those 2 guys. Pity even though it’s not Karina’s fault. Finally when Tamahone asks why Kaoru had asks Keita to do so, Nadeshiko replies it’s because Kaoru likes Keita a lot.
 
That perverted underwear thief is back and doing his rounds in episode 20. Because he picked on the wrong girls (our Inukami girls, that is), he gets blown away. With that, he meets his master. Yup, another sick underwear thief but from the outside he looks like a samurai from those olden days. Yeah, he’s gonna demonstrate to his pupil how to steal women’s underwear while they have their clothes on. I don’t know how, but this guy’s real good. Besides that, Tensou and Furano notices how gloomy Gokyouya looked everytime she looks at that photo with a pic which look so much like Keita, so much so they plead to Keita to go out on a date with her! Though Youko’s against it, but after hearing out, Keita decides to help her out. The date seems normal and it’s revealed that before Gokyouya became Kaoru’s Inukami, she was Keita’s dad Inukami, which was the reason why Keita’s mom hated her. Yup, that person in that pic is Keita’s dad. But their conversation is interrupted when that underwear thief master comes stealing Gokyouya’s underwear. The other Inukamis who gave chase earlier on arrive. A gust of wind blew away that pervert’s hard earned underwear as he has time to admire them while they’re fluttering in the sky. And that distraction is enough for the Inukamis to fry him out cold. While Gokyouya thanks Furano and Tensou for their concern, Gokyouya feels much better with Keita around now though she doesn’t have any romantic feelings for him in the first place. Gokyouya notes how he’s so like his father as a jealous Youko continues her attack on Keita.
 
Dai Youko’s seal is once again weakening in episode 21 but Keita and Youko are no where to be found. Because of that Kaoru sends Tomohane on a mission to find and bring Keita and Youko back. Some light is shed on that ice chamber in a few episodes ago. It seems that the figure lying there is Kaoru (his clone or what?) and Kaoru has no choice but to leave it all to Sekidousai and wonders if everyone would hate him if they ever find out that he’s collaborating with that sick flasher. But whatever it is, Nadeshiko says she’ll always protect him no matter what as they both embrace. Meanwhile, Tamahone has a hard time finding Keita and has some close calls like hearing someone calling out a pervert but it’s another pervert not Keita. See how trademark is Keita’s pervertness. Tomohane also meets Naoki, Kei and Sebastian (who’re operating a cake shop) and had a short chat. Just when Tamahone’s gonna give up, some evil spirits start attacking her. She’s defenseless but luckily just in time, Keita and Youko appears and easily finishes off the weak spirits. We find out that Keita and Youko has been called by Tomekichi to help some Cat God. By doing so Keita gets 1 wish as a reward. Because he wanted a harem, that Cat God misinterpret his words and changed his outfit into a cat maid one. And he can’t take it off so he’s in hiding. But whatever it is, Tomohane’s glad that Keita’s back and hugs him.
 
Episode 22 begins with Karina being captured by Sekidousai as the latter tells about that ice chamber thingy as some ‘product of despair’. Meanwhile Keita and Youko have arrived at Dai Youko’s sealing tomb and they all need to combine their powers to seal Dai Youko for another 300 good years. Since the other Inukamis don’t want Youko to join in thinking that she may betray them. With that Youko leaves but Keita soon catch up to her. So more flashbacks as we see how a young Keita found an injured Youko in her fox form and treated her with kindness and chocolates. Ever since then, Youko was taken in by Keita’s kindness and wanted to be his Inukami. Keita then realized that the fox back then is Youko. But that chat has to be chut short as it’s time for the ritual. In short, it failed. Yup, Dai Youko breaks out of his seal and revives! He looks like a handsome young man as he smothered Youko with his love. But of course when he sees Keita, he doesn’t take an instant liking. Furthermore, Youko describes things which are ambiguously intimate like they’ve bath together and such, shocking Dai Youko. While Dai Youko and Keita are arguing, the rest may think that Dai Youko may be just an idiot. Yeah, a powerful idiot. Why he demonstrated his powers by splitting a mountain top in half! Be afraid.
 
But soon, Dai Youko accepts Keita as his son-in-law and even has talks about marriage and all that stuff, saying that he’s calling a truce for the sake of his unborn grandchild. I suppose Keita has no choice but to have puppies as his children. Unfortunately, Sekidousai makes his appearance. And this made Dai Youko happy. Yup, his ‘playmate’ has arrived as they both fly towards the city. No they’re not gays. The way they ‘play’ with each other means that with all the magical projection and spells, the city will become like the aftermath of a comet come crashing into it.
 
That’s what’s happening in episode 23 as Dai Youko takes on Sekidousai. It’s quite amusing and ironic to hear Dai Youko saying "I love you" whereas Sekidousai replies "I hate you". As the 2 battle it out, the other Inukamis race to the city to stop them. However, since Kaoru is collaborating with Sekidousai, he lies to his other Inukamis to protect the city people while he and Nadeshiko go stop Sekidousai. But along the way, they meet Keita and Youko and Nadeshiko lies to them about finding a secret spell to seal Sekidousai. Of course Youko is suspicious and later comes back to confront Nadeshiko. Because of that, Youko and Nadeshiko duke it out to make the latter spill the beans as Youko tells Keita to find Kaoru. When Keita does, Kaoru tells him the truth which pisses the former off. So the 2 cousins soon fought each other. These causes the other Inukamis to be confused. But ultimately it seems Sekidousai wins his match as he shrinks Dai Youko and puts him in some small bottle, absorbing his powers. No time for internal squabbles as the Inukamis turn their attention to Sekidousai. Sekidousai is gonna blast Youko but Keita protects her and is hit by some whirlwind which causes Keita to become a baby! Yup, he’s an infant. A talking infant. Keita would’ve drowned in the river if Youko hadn’t come to his rescue. They bump into Karina who thinks he knows Kaoru’s secret. Meanwhile Kaoru is slightly injured as the rest of his Inukamis are quite concerned and wants to know what’s going on.
 
Kaoru comes clean in episode 24. When Kaoru was young, he meet some hooded magician who have some sort of Mayan gold piece mask named Jasei, and was cared and nurtured very well by him. However all this is just a facade when Jasei reveals that he loves seeing people in despair and miserable especially after all that hope and happiness he had instilled and then take it all away by telling Kaoru the bad news that his current body is a fake one and that the real one is actually lying frozen in that ice chamber. Of course any young kid would feel devastated, which is all going to Jasei’s plans but Kaoru mentions how he’s gonna live his life to the fullest. If it’s like that, Jasei has no reason to live and disappears. Bad thing is, only Jasei can break this curse. Later Kaoru finds out that Sekidousai has the power to do so and thus the reason of collborating with him. Another bad news is that since time is running out, Kaoru’s fake body is going to disappear.
 
But after battling Keita, Kaoru realized that even if he’s got his real body back, he has already betrayed everyone and will still lose important things around him. With that, Kaoru decides to fight Sekidousai with his other Inukamis firmly behind him except Nadeshiko. Uh-huh, Nadeshiko is spacing out and feeling jealous that the 1 special thing she shared with Kaoru is gone. I can’t believe this b*tch (allow me to use this term on her) is thinking like this! How selfish and at a time like this. Good thing is that Sekidousai has some machine called Daisakkai which allows it for any wish to come true. Since Sekidousai is gonna use it as for his world without pants dream, he’s deterring the rests from coming close to it. Kaoru wants Nadeshiko to go up to that machine and wish for Sekidousai to be destroyed but that Nadeshiko b*tch girl could only think about her ‘love’ with Kaoru. Because she’s wasting time spacing out, she heard Kaoru’s voice and to her horror and everyone else, Kaoru has been stabbed by Sekidousai! Oh no.
 
It’s true. Kaoru actually dies in episode 25. After some last words in the arms of Nadeshiko, Kaoru turns into dust. It can’t be happening. But it did. See it’s all your fault Nadeshiko. Now she’s really mad. And it seems Sekidousai reveals his true self and it’s that Jasei guy! He’s been planning all this all along. Nadeshiko pours her rage and anger as she unleashes her super power pounding Jasei. But that isn’t the end yet as Jasei puts a vision of Kaoru on himself which makes Nadeshiko hesitate. She’s got a soft spot for him and because of that Jasei gets to suck her powers as Nadeshiko plunges below. Now she’s in despair while Jasei is all happy to see in such. The other Inukamis join in to battle Jasei but are no match for him even with their combined powers. Youko arrives to give Nadeshiko some words of encouragement like how since there are 10 Inukamis under Kaoru, she’s gotta learn to share and not hog him all by herself. Just kidding. With that, Nadeshiko gets her confidence boosted again and joins her comrades in battle. Meanwhile Karina is carrying Keita and heading towards the battle place but are stopped by some zombies. As Karina tries to deal with them, he accidentally drops Keita into the fast river current below. Is Keita gonna share the same fate as Kaoru too? Don’t think so. But let’s hope for the best.
 
More fighting from the Inukamis in episode 26. But before that, Keita seems to have survived and resurfaced underground. And it’s like 1 big reunion of characters because that kappa, Tanuki, Tomekichi, Naoki and his bunch of weirdos and perverts have gathered and vow to do all they can to protect the city they love as they take on those zombies. With that Karina after changing Keita’s diapers, carries him off to where the Inukamis are. But it seems Jasei isn’t too happy because of the Inukami’s adamant spirit to fight him when they should be in despair. Yup, it’s tough to break that spirits so much so I felt that Jasei’s the one in despair. He’s been saying "Why why" so much so it becomes irritating. It’s like a broken recorder when his plans aren’t going as he wishes. Stop it already. Don’t you know you’re the villain and in this kind of shows you’re destined to lose. Karina arrives and throws Keita at Daisakkai. But Jasei is gonna have the last laugh as he blows up the machine to destroy all hopes. Just when everything looks bleak and everyone is on the verge of giving up hope, Keita now back in his normal form appears from the ground below. How? Well, Youko uses her Shukuchi to teleport Daisakkai away and thus Keita was able to make his wish come true by turning himself back to normal.
 
So more teamwork pounding and fighting as Youko decides to transform into her true form to give Jasei an ultimate beating. Before that, Keita gives Youko a peck on her lips (aww…) and with all their final combined power they blasted Jasei into smithereens. Yeah, Keita can still flirt around but since Youko has no time to punish him, she just let him off with her warning. Soon it’s sunrise and it looks like Dai Youko and Sekidousai have returned to their normal forms. I thought Sekidousai is Jasei but I later find out that Sekidousai has just been ‘possessed’ and taken over by Jasei. With the duo tied up and Sekidousai now wearing an underwear (yeah, he’s freaking out and wants to take them off), Karina says he’ll teach them to behave properly in public from now on. Good for them. Kaoru’s Inukami’s notice that they still have their contract ring still intact with them and concludes that Kaoru isn’t really dead afterall and his soul is probably wandering somewhere. They now have renewed hope and will do their best to search for him. Keita and Youko are having their moment together as Youko finds out that Keita’s real intention back then when he found her in her fox form was to find and trap strange creatures so that he could sell them at a pet shop. So it’s back to the usual squabbling as she zaps him and does her usual Shukuchi on Keita. Ah, we’re all back on familiar happy ground.
 
Overall, I guess I kinda enjoyed the series in general but with the way things ended, I suppose they made room for a potential sequel and I’m guessing it’s to find Kaoru’s soul. But a movie of the series has been released in April 2007 but I’m not sure what the storyline is about. Whether it’s finding Kaoru or some flashback story. Keita has got to be the guy who’s been naked the longest and the most in anime history ever. He should get an award for that. And his elephant should get a co-starring role since it appeared quite a number of times.
 
The drawing, art, animation is all pretty standard and would appeal to those who love Japanese anime bishies. Of course the voice acting too is quite satisfying and as mentioned my favourite one is still Sekidousai’s with that low cool mellow voice of his. Of course there are other star studded casts like Yui Horie (as Youko), Nana Mizuki (as Kei), Megumi Hayashibara (as Keita’s grandma when she was young), Jun Fukuyama (as Keita who also voiced Tsubaki in Full Metal Panic Fumoffu and Anon in The Law Of Ueki) and Yuki Kaida (as Kaoru who also voiced Fuji in Prince Of Tennis and Kurapica in Hunter X Hunter).
 
I find the mid-intermissions a little amusing. Though some of them have the characters in sexy position and sometimes in different outfits or costumes, after they say "Inukami", it’ll be followed by "Wang, wang", which is supposed to be a dog’s bark. The next episode preview is narrated by Karina and there’s full of sexual subtext in it. I mean, the way he says things with his low steamy voice may indicate that this upright justice guy may have some hidden and unfulilled lustful desires. So nobody’s perfect okay.
 
While the opening themes song, Hikari, sung by Yui Horie sounds like a disco dance song with lots of techno music, the ending song, Yuujou Monogatari by Aice5 sounds funny. Especially the chorus part where they go "Taihen, taihen…". Not only that, the characters there are all in chibi version and their eyes are as big as a goldfish in proportion to its body. Then there’s a parody of this song in episode 18 whereby the characters are taken over by semi-naked muscular macho men as they too sing the song. It’s bloody hilarious as well as it looks and sound disgusting at the same time! I couldn’t stop laughing and went "What the? What’s that all about" in the end.
 
So if you still don’t like the idea of nakedness and ecchi even though it’s all for comedy purposes, then you should skip this one. Otherwise you’ll be disgusted rather than laughing whenever Mr Elephant appears. I still think that it’s all just good clean fun. And no, after watching this show didn’t turn me into a pervert at all nor do I feel horny! With Keita’s perverted attitude, it’s a good thing he only has 1 Inukami because if he’s got 10 of them, there’s gonna be lots of Shukuchi and Dai Jaen coming his way. Maybe I should get an Inukami of my own. A pretty one. Another new reason to be called man’s best friend. On second thought, maybe not. She may sound like a nagging queen control wife. Oops. Sorry, just kidding.

Happy Lesson

July 27, 2007

Learning is a never ending and continuous process. One cannot finish learning in one’s entire lifetime. So far what I have learned from watching too many animes, my experience and knowledge tells me that Happy Lesson is gonna be another one of those harem animes. How true I was.
 
The title may sound like a show for younger audiences or for those with an ecchi mind may think that it contains explicit adult material. Well, it’s none of those. It’s more like your usual teenager anime series with some comedy-cum-drama-cum-romance and some lessons in life. Well, maybe the lessons in life part isn’t that obvious but if you do some deep thinking and analysis, I’m sure you’ll find one.
 
With 13 episodes of video study material (just kidding), we have this usual main male protagonist guy, Chitose Hitotose. As any other typical teenager at his age attending high school, he lost both his real parents while he was young but they left him a substantially large house in their will to him before their demise. Therefore, you’ll find his personality as somewhat a grumpy, grouchy, cranky, sulky, lazy, idle, lethargic, untrusting towards other people, full of angst teen.
 
But his ‘lonely’ life will soon take a turn for the better (or worse, depends on how you view it) when 5 ladies turned up at his doorstep and Chitose finds out that they are going to be his ‘mamas’. Yeah, each of them has their own unique and weird characteristics. Wow. Not only that, these mamas also turned out to be his teachers in his high school he attends. So it’s really going to be 1 big messy noisy and ‘lively’ place as they start living together. I guess Mother’s Day and Teacher’s Day is gonna be an expensive affair. So that’s the harem part. But unlike most harems, Chitose isn’t the peverted kind nor is he interested in any romantic relationship with the girls around him due to his nature.
 
I don’t really remember how did those 5 ladies ended up being Chitose’s moms and teachers I feel that those ladies look young enough to be his sisters or even his girlfriend! Don’t you think so? But each of them are sincerely doing their best to turn Chitose into someone respectable and useful. Hmm… Seems Chitose’s has a long way to go before achieving even close to that. So to avoid any confusion, I’ll sometimes make reference to Chitose as their son and the 5 ladies as his mom.
 
Before I continue, let me go through briefly Chitose’s fab five mother-cum-teachers. First up we have Mutsuki Ichimonji. This gentle bespectacled lady does most of the chores in the house like cooking and cleaning. Also, she is Chitose’s homeroom teacher and teaches Japanese classic literature. Then there is Kisaragi Ninomai. This is my favourite gal because she is plain weird. In addition to as Chitose’s physics teacher, this introvert, ’emotionless’ and ‘shy’ (soft-spoken in a way) lady has lots of weird inventions which does a lot of weird things. Plus she seems to defy laws of physics at times as sometimes you could see her sitting, hanging and appearing upside down from the screen. Another thing I happen to notice about her is that she doesn’t sit with the rest of the ‘family members’ during meals and has a table of her own. Uh-huh, she doesn’t eat normal food either but just some juices.
 
Next the miko priestess of the quintet is Yayoi Sanzenin. Sometimes wielding a sword to fend of any spiritual attacks and sometimes sticking it to Chitose’s neck just to make him change his mind or such. She is also the school’s physician or the school’s nurse and it seems Yayoi is quite popular with the boys. I’m not really sure they’re feigning it or not but the boys would come rushing to her room in a stampede just to get their whatever check-up. But she always reserve a place for Chitose. Too bad other boys. Looks like she’s already ‘taken’.
 
Uzuki Shitenno reminds me so much like Sakura from Da Capo. Yeah, she’s a cosplay fanatic and her personality is like those of a child which matches with her small physique. Some people don’t really grow up. Makes you wonder if she could really do her job as a mom and teacher. She can. In her own ‘unique’ way. She is the art teacher in school and is a happy-go-lucky girl. At least she’s the positive type. Finally, which harem wouldn’t be complete without that brute and crude gal. That’s Satsuki Gokajo alright. You might want to stay away from this gal because to her, brawns is better than brains (yeah, power is love) and she may get violent and aggressive at times, acting without thinking first, and her strength makes her a formidable opponent. However, this athletics teacher is generally a nice person, though she and Uzuki gets into arguments and squabbles (like stealing each other’s food) but in the end they make up pretty fast rendering that spat "What on Earth was that for in the first place?". Funny to watch them do that.
 
But because it would be really weird for other people to know that a kid has 5 moms, but his mama is also his teacher at school. The gang try their best to keep their relationship a secret from the rest like Chitose has to address them as senseis in school and as mamas back home and also going to school and coming back home at different times. This is so not to arouse any suspicions either. Since Chitose’s not the kind to mix around with others, I guess that’s okay. But for the teachers… I mean, who wants to know where their teachers live, right? Okay, maybe some obsess admirer. But I don’t see any of that here. Not even Yayoi’s crazy male fans.
 
To add further to the harem, Chitose himself has 2 sisters. At first I thought they were his actual siblings but I found out that they’re just his adopted siblings but they treat each other as real ones and share quite a close bond. Yeah, they even have different surnames. Hazuki Yazakura is Chitose’s elder sister and is some sort of a rising and popular pop/rock star artiste. Because she has to go tour several cities for her concerts, she rarely comes back home, unless when she wants to, that is. The moe one of the gang has got to be Chitose’s adopted little sister Minazuki Rokumatsuri. Yeah, she’s cute when she puts both her little hands near her mouth on her cheeks whenever she speaks. Though she lives in Hazuki’s apartment nearby Chitose’s house, sometimes she gets lonely because Hazuki’s away doing one of her tours, therefore on occassions she comes to stay with Chitose.
 
If that’s not enough to the harem Chitose’s got, then be prepared to add another 1. She is Fumitsuki Nanakorobi who is the class rep and in the same class as Chitose. Besides being the president of the 3 member literature club, Fumitsuki harbours a deep secret crush for Chitose, but that Chitose jerk is bloody oblivious to it. Well, Fumitsuki’s partly to blame, everytime she gets her chance, she somehow gets nervous and blows it, whether it’s taking too long or due to some unfortunate circumstances. Though this doesn’t stop her from trying again. But that’s only within herself. In the eyes of the public, she is seen as a tough girl trying to discipline and tell off Chitose for his laziness and such (more like being concern for him actually). Because of that, nobody else knows of her secret crush on Chitose and I suppose she wants to keep it that way.
 
Or is it that she only herself knows that secret. That’s because she has 2 irritating and annoying self-proclaimed followers of Fumitsuki, nicknamed Student B and Student C (you can see the alphabets on their respective foreheads) who are always putting up mock plays and ‘what if’ love situations whenever Fumitsuki thinks about Chitose. And everytime, a very annoyed Fumitsuki would give them a super punch which sends them flying into the air. So funny. But I guess those 2 never learn because they’ll get it at least once in every episode. Don’t tell me that they enjoyed getting punched like that. Must be lah.
 
So most of the episodes are gonna be something like this. There’s some sort of a theme for a particular episode, sometimes focusing on just 1 particular mama, Chitose reluctantly gets involve and usually gets some sort of a torture or torment from it. Yeah, I wonder how that guy could stand so much suffering. It’s ironic because the mamas in a way you could say subject their poor little son to some torment whether it’s Kisaragi’s invention (always exploding in the end) or getting into some locked wrestling moves by Satsuki. Not sure whether they’re blur and ignorant or what because they seem to be thinking that Chitose’s having fun. Can’t they see their son’s in pain? But I guess that’s what makes it funny. In the end, Chitose bonds closer with them though he’s generally that stubborn person and perhaps learn a thing or two. A happy and feel good ending for that particular episode.
 
Thus episode 1 is when Chitose has his usual parent-teacher conference at his Koyomi High School. I guess there’s a dilemma when they’re his mama and teacher altogether. So they decide to put up a friendly challenge to see who gets to go with him to the conference. And the theme is being nice to him. You’ve already guessed it. More pain and torment. Then in episode 2, a couple of property realtors (1 looking so much like that booty shaker from Rave) threaten to expose a photo they took of Mutsuki and Chitose together (which will result in the former getting fired from school) if Chitose don’t sign an agreement to sell his house. Of course, their plans are foiled in the end and Chitose’s secret is safe and sound. Plus, they got their memories erased. Convenient.
 
Yayoi sense that Chitose may be in danger and having bad luck in episode 3 and tries several methods (red: torture and painful methods) to rid of him of his bad luck. So you could say that perhaps in a way it’s Yayoi’s cure that’s causing the bad luck and spirit of misfortune but I suppose Chitose’s got 5 lucky mamas and the spirit of mosfortune is eventually gone in the end. Chitose’s adopted sisters make their first appearance in episode 4. Hazuki and Minazuki wants Chitose to move back to their apartment so the trio can be together again but the mamas want to keep him as well. So another round of contests between the 2 sides to see who gets to keep Chitose and of course, Chitose getting hurt in the process. We find out Hazuki here is really a big eater. Yeah, she could gulp down dishes after dishes and she still has room for more! She’s definitely every girl’s dream of wanting to eat their favourite desserts and staying slim at the same time. In the end, after hearing Minazuki’s words and some comforting words from Chitose himself, they come to a conclusion to let Minazuki stay here from time to time since Hazuki has to be away for her tours. The catch is, even though I find the house to be quite ‘roomy’ somehow they don’t have enough rooms and because of that, Chitose has to move out of his room and sleep in the living room’s couch whenever Minazuki’s here to stay. How ironic. Can’t they share rooms? Can’t they see their son is in discomfort? Well, maybe Chitose don’t really mind them with his ‘bo chap’ attitude. He just lives with it. Yeah, this is nothing compared to his mamas torture.
 
The whole gang takes a trip to some snowy mountain in episode 5 but a skiing lesson gone wrong causes Chitose and Satsuki to be separated from the rest. And since there’s a storm coming and it’s getting dark, the 2 have no choice but to be strong as they try to find their way back in the blizzard. So we can see Chitose’s good side, though he may seem uncaring on the outside but on the inside he deeply cares for his family. As everyone else prays for their safe return back at the cabin, the 2 eventually manage to get back but we see the cabin been ‘torn apart’ due to an avalanche and the rest are ‘drunk’ from the fun they had last night while waiting for their return.
 
Kisaragi wins a boat through a contest in episode 6 and takes the gang on a trip but halfway their boat went out of control, leaving them stranded on some weird island. Here we’re introduced to a girl called Kanna Togakushi. Supposedly she and Kisaragi were childhood friends and had plans to take over the world! But because Kisaragi left to become a teacher and a mama, Kanna is furious and wants to kidnap Chitose so that Kisaragi would come back to her side and continue their world domination plans. Uh-huh, this island is full of weird traps and inventions and it’s like Kanna’s base. Plus, Kanna’s afraid of Kisaragi whenever she gets mad (umm… there isn’t any such expression on Kisaragi’s emotionless face. But I suppose she can tell). And because Kanna’s not used to men, she gets all flustered up whenever Chitose’s near her. Eventually this would turn into affection as later in the series, Kanna would come to the city and try and ‘capture’ Chitose for herself with whatever weird inventions of hers. So I suppose she has given up on taking over the world after Kanna’s plans has been foiled (partly due to her ‘dumbness’ as well) and real intentions exposed. Oh yeah, Kanna seems to call and refer Satsuki as a bear because of the latter’s display of brute power, much to Satsuki’s dismay. Also, Kanna calls Kisaragi Ki-chan but I’m thinking there’s a very good reason why she doesn’t call her Ki-sama. Hahaha! For those who don’t know the meaning of that, kisama means bastard in Japanese. Besides, Ki-chan sounds cute.
 
The usual sports festival in episode 7 as Minazuki is eager to get her brother to win the Most Valuable Player award so much so she fixes a race so that Chitose could win but it ended with disastrous results. When the mamas find out, they go all out to help Chitose win the coveted award. But of course, more pain for the poor guy. Though in the end, Minazuki’s plan didn’t turn out the way it should be, Chitose won the MWP award, which is Mottomo Waraetta Player (The player that laughed the most). Well, Chitose’s feeling pretty happy about it, until the announcer tells him that he didn’t do anything specific to get that award, making everbody laugh. Yeah, he’s also the guy who gets laughed the most too. In episode 8, Uzuki meets a small boy at the playground who thinks she’s an angel. To cut things short, that boy is actually a ghost as Uzuki and him continue to have the greatest time of their lives before the boy one day tells her that he’ll soon ‘vanish’ and never see her again. This episode is the only episode which I find Chitose isn’t subjected to any torturing from the mamas. A brief relief, I’d say.
 
Remember Fumitsuki’s 3 member literature club? In episode 9, the school principal decides to disband the literature club because it has too few members since the school is limited on their budget for the many other clubs. Yeah, and Student B and Student C are her other members. But the principal gives Fumitsuki a time frame and chance to recruit new members, failing which, she’ll have her club disbanded. With that, Fumitsuki tries to recruit as much people as possible and especially Chitose (who’s more interested in the going home club) and Minazuki. But the other mamas to wants Chitose to join their club and lets Chitose and Minazuki have a trial sit in in their clubs. Whether it’s Satsuki’s swimming club or Kisaragi’s chemistry club, you’ll expect lots more pain for this poor guy. In the end, Chitose said something like how unfair it is for the other mamas if they were to join one of theirs, so both Chitose and Minazuki eventually settled in joining Fumitsuki’s literature club, in a way saving her club from being disbanded.
 
After Hazuki has finished perfroming at some famous venue where she has always dreamed of performing, she decides to retire and comes back to live with Chitose and his mamas in episode 10. So some flashback here and there on how close Hazuki is with her siblings as she remembers the reason why she sang was because it made Chitose and Minazuki smile. With that, she decides to continue with her singing career. Oh yeah, we also see how Hazuki gulps down her food. She doesn’t really chew them! That whole piece of steak just entered her mouth like that. Not like she has a very big mouth too. Kisaragi uses one of her invention to change her personality in episode 11. It’s like 1 mom per day and it’s quite funny to see her in the other mama’s personalities. Of course it all doesn’t fit her because Kisaragi is best when she’s her normal self. That’s what Chitose thinks even though her inventions causes him a lot of pain. Well, looks like he does miss the suffering. With that Kisaragi changes back to her old self but not before something went wrong with the machine which causes Chitose and the other mamas to have their personalities changed. Don’t worry, they’ll be back to normal by the next episode.
 
A school cultural festival in episode 12 sees the mamas trying to get Chitose to attend the event that they organize. Meanwhile, Kanna is bent on ‘capturing’ her love but is foiled everytime. Then there’s 1 dating-like boyfriend-girlfriend-matching-like game on some stage whereby several boys and girls sit and asks each other some questions before with a push of the button they get to see which boy/girl they prefer. But when Chitose reluctantly participates, he’s the only guy there while the mamas, Fumitsuki, Minazuki and even Kanna are on the opposite. Yeah, real harem. He’s wondering how it all end up like this. It’s quite funny when Chitose’s asking what a disguised Kanna’s favourite hobby (I can’t believe everybody’s so blur in not recognizing that Kanna) and Kanna’s reply is "Seifuku". Of course everybody’s stunned at first. That word is a pun in Japanese which can mean world domination or school uniform. Hehehe. And everybody’s calmed down when Kanna said she meant the latter. But turning point of the series is at the end of this episode when Fumitsuki eavesdrop at the backstage when Chitose is having a chat with Minazuki and his mamas. Yup, she’s thinking that Chitose and the teachers may be living under 1 roof as she sounds pretty concern. Yeah, previously Fumitsuki tried to follow Chitose back to his house but failed to do so because for instance one time she got hit on the head by Kisaragi’s hammer from behind and was knock out cold. But this time, oh oh. Chitose’s secret is hanging in the balance.
 
Thus episode 13 Fumitsuki reveals to Chitose about her new found knowledge which causes him to sweat a little. Chitose in turn reveals this to his mamas. Of course they too are worried as it could change the way they are now. Thus Chitose and Fumitsuki had a private chat near the river with the mamas spying from afar (since it’s quite a distance they can’t really hear what they’re saying). Chitose begs to her that he doesn’t care for himself but doesn’t want anything to happen to his mamas. But it seems Fumitsuki doesn’t care for all that she just wants to be with Chitose as she tries to confess her feelings. It’s quite hilarious when Fumitsuki stammers as she’s saying "Su… su…" while a blur Chitose’s trying to guess what she’s saying by replying ahead by saying sudako and sukiyaki, before pissing off Fumitsuki as she tells him to let her finish her sentence. Hehehe. Anyway, Fumitsuki manages to confess that she loves him, shocking Chitose.
 
But at the same time, Kanna who’s still bent on capturing Chitose emerges from the lake and throws some electric net at them. With that, the electrocution wipes out both their memories a little. Bummer. I was hoping that these 2 would eventually be together in the end. Looks like the producers don’t want to end it that way. The mamas arrive and though they don’t know what happened, they thanked Kanna who’s still unsure of what she has just done. But when Kanna saw Kisaragi, she panicked and ran away before her usual I’ll be back again ranting. In a way, Chitose’s secret remains safe and everything is back to normal with everyone happy being together.
 
However, it doesn’t all end there. That’s because there are more lessons to learn as we continue into season 2 called Happy Lesson Advanced. The story here does continue off where the first season left and those who want to jump right into this season is advisable to watch the first one first. It makes sense right? I mean, how can you go on to the next chapter when you haven’t finish the previous chapter. Plus, it makes it easier because the previous season is like a foundation as it builds up certain things and makes you familiar with the series. Just like studying itself, right?
 
So with another additional 13 episodes, you can expect more or less of the same thing. Lots of wacky comedy and comical slapstick humour. And as usual Chitose bears the brunt of it all. However, I find this second season to be a little more serious with drama in addition to its usual comedy element. And since the way things ended in the last season, I suppose it makes it easier for the producers to continue off.
 
In the first episode, we see the school having some parade to choose for this new semester’s school uniforms. So our mama teachers are to model the potential uniforms. It’s so funny to see that when it’s Satsuki’s turn, everybody couldn’t recognize her and they’re wondering if she’s a new teacher because Satsuki don’t normally wear a dress. Then this causes Satsuki to get violent as she ‘pounds’ her male escort. With that, everybody recognizes it’s her and cheers on for her. I see, bruteness is her trademark. Also, we see beforehand Chitose having a new neighbour (a girl clad in red chinese cheongsam) moving next door to his house but she looks pretty suspicious. So when it’s Mutsuki’s turn to go onstage with Chitose as her escort, some guy which looks so much like their new neighbour comes down and attacks Chitose. He mentions that Mutsuki is his mom and calls her Mucchin.
 
So in episode 2, besides Kisaragi’s uniform won and would become the school’s uniform, we find out that the person who attacked Chitose then is Nagatsuki Kuron from China. To cut things short, he is actually a she and is that new neighbour girl, who seems to be spying on Chitose’s house everytime and even in the dark when it’s nightfall. She dresses like a guy because she’s more comfortable in clothes which aren’t too ‘breezy’. Anyway, during art class while making some head bust, Chitose receives a challenge letter (stuck on a knife as it was thrown in from the window) from Nagatsuki to challenge and fight him on the school rooftop. Funny to see Fumitsuki misinterpreting the situation and thinks Chitose dislikes the bust of her head so much. Anyway the 2 met and Nagatsuki says if she wins, Chitose has to stay away from her mom. As the 2 trade punches (I suppose Chitose could fight too) the mamas learned about this and rushed to the scene. Mutsuki manages to calm the 2 down (just before Kisaragi could activate her whatever multi-counter attacking device).
 
Some talking as we find out Nagatsuki has managed to find Mutsuki through someone and that Mucchin is actually Mandarin for the word mother (mu qin for the exact pinyin). Yeah, it make sense. A flashback telling us that they’re really not related but because a young Nagatsuki was taken in by Mutsuki’s kindness then, she decides to call her her mother and would look for her in the future. Another non-blood related case. Also, Nagatsuki becomes a new transfer student in Chitose’s class. But another love storm is brewing because Fumitsuki too is confused as she has feelings for Nagatsuki. Though she always keep telling to herself that she’s a girl but I suppose this gives an opportunity for Student B and Student C to put up another one of their acts. Not with their usual punishement.
 
It’s another Uzuki-Chitose in episode 3 as they head to the amusment park. Earlier on, Nagatsuki asks why Uzuki became Chitose’s mom and the former says because it’s fun. Nagatsuki of course couldn’t accept such an answer as she followed and spied on them there. She’s always thinking how could a cold hearted and ungrateful Chitose end up having 5 moms. While riding some ride, some mechanical glitch causes it to breakdown halfway and causes a fire. Uzuki and Chitose tries to escape but saw a trapped mother and her child and proceeds to rescue them. After witnessing such events, Nagatsuki now understands why Uzuki becomes Chitose’s mom. So episode 4 sees Nagatsuki visiting Yayoi in the infirmary as she explains her problems about Chitose’s attitude and reveals more info than she should like how her dad is some sort of a gangster which Nagatsuki isn’t aware of (it’s the way she say it and choice of words). Also, we learn that Nagatsuki is a big fan of Hazuki and when Hazuki was doing one of her concerts in China, she told Nagatsuki about Mutsuki because of the family picture Nagatsuki saw of her in. Yup, Hazuki’s back in this episode and we see Chitose has been sleeping in the infirmary all day long, missing his classes.
 
The school takes a field trip in episode 5 as Fumitsuki again tries her best to confess to an oblivious Chitose but is further unsure about her feelings for Nagatsuki. Hey, why is Kisaragi sitting upside down on Chitose’s head in the bus? Doesn’t anybody else notice this? I like the funny part whereby Fumitsuki’s gonna do some bungee jump on some fabled suicide bridge whereby eternal love awaits the couple who bungees off it. But because Fumitsuki took too long, Chitose’s gone and Student B and Student C bungeed down along with Fumitsuki. Haha. Those 3 will always be together. Besides, that we see Mutsuki’s a terrible driver. Don’t get into any car with her behind the wheels. Because Fumitsuki’s acting strange, a sharp Nagatsuki thinks she’s in love with Chitose and even sets up those 2 to meet in some room at the hot spring inn. However the futons fell on them and they’re in a compromising position. Yup, Chitose’s passed out but Fumitsuki’s mind is running wild and thinking that this may be her chance to kiss him. But after realizing her embarrassing position, she does her super punch which frees them from the entanglement. Fumitsuki later finds out that it was Nagatsuki’s doing and they both had a little chat. Fumitsuki thanks Nagatsuki for her advice and it seems the both of them have become good friends. Well, I suppose Fumitsuki prefers to do it at her own pace.
 
Because of Chitose’s laziness in episode 6, Minazuki decides to help her big bro do some assignment on the history of the city they live in by heading into some cave inside Koyomi Temple. At the same time, a couple of bungling treasure hunters dubbed the Honey Team, Hachi Fujiko and her henchman Takechi Kogorou, have arrived at the temple as well because they believed that there is some hidden treasure there. Of course when they spot Minazuki, they think it’s their competitor and try to capture her, but was unable to do so. Meanwhile Chitose and the mamas noticed Minazuki hasn’t returned yet and went to find her, eventually leading them to the cave. It’s quite funny to see the mamas turned into Miko Rangers (also come in different assorted colours) because of Yayoi’s advice that this is a holy place. And Chitose… He gets to dressed as a kappa. So both sides meet and Honey Team thinks that Chitose kappa is the treasure. Chase chase chase. Explosions, explosions, explosions. Yeah, some mecha battle between Honey Team’s grasshopper and Miko Ranger’s giant centipede. Most probably why Fujiko needs the treasure is to pay off her 24 payments and 2 bonus payments when she bought that mecha grasshopper. Of course they lost lah but they escaped. That’s the last you’ll see of them. So I hope Chitose learns to be more responsible next time after learning why Minazuki does so. And that catalogue book has an odd profile outline resemblance to Kanna.
 
Satsuki’s getting engaged in episode 7. But we’ll never see the face of her fiancee. Unfortunately because of that, she and Chitose got into an argument which strained their relationship a little. Something like Chitose one hit some drum together with her. I think. So a lot of chatting and drama as Satsuki tries to decide whether to go ahead and live with her new family or stay back with her old one. Quite funny to see Kisaragi got knocked out cold in her seated position when she tasted some super spicy curry dish. But I suppose Satsuki still prefers Chitose and the other mamas and in the end the omiai is cancelled after she and Chitose mend back their ties. It wouldn’t be fun if there is no brute power girl in the family, right?
 
The gang is invited to the beach in episode 8 because Hazuki is putting up a concert there. So you’d expect the sun, sea and swimsuits. Remember those 2 idiotic property realtors? Yeah, they’re back but this time they want to take over the beach and turn it into some resort. Of course the duo spots Chitose and his 5 mamas and are gonna get their revenge too and at the same time forcefully make Chitose sign the agreement to sell his house. It’s killing 2 birds with 1 stone. They managed to capture and tie them up one night. But since Kisaragi isn’t feeling well, she couldn’t unleash whatever invention of hers and kick their butt. Luckily she contacts Kanna and that girl got so excited that her Kisaragi called her that she rushed over to the scene and foiled those property losers’ plan. But instead of erasing their memories again, they made a deal not to developed the beach. They must be really afraid of Kanna’s weird inventions. But it ended when Kanna notices something is wrong with Kisaragi and that she hasn’t much time left.
 
Chitose is all home alone in episode 9 because the mamas along with Minazuki and even Hazuki took a trip to the hot spring. Since they don’t want to forcefully take Chitose along, they brought along a robot Chitose so as not to waste their tickets. And they treat it like the real Chitose so much so it makes you wonder whether they’re blur cases or not. Because of this, Kanna uses this opportunity to capture Chitose. But because of her usual flustering, she still can’t do it. Here the duo also befriended a puppy named Chibisuke and Chitose took the chance to teach Kanna how to be less nervous when interacting with others. Of course Kanna’s who’s living in solitary for so long would find it hard to do so but she eventually softens up and manages to do so. Though they had some moments here and there but it doesn’t amount to anything much, Meanwhile the mamas are relaxing at the hotspring and it’s quite funny to see that robot Chitose going "Don’t be kidding me" in nearly every sentence. Fumitsuki’s there too and just like any blur case she thinks this robot Chitose is the real one but fainted when she punched his head because robot Chitose’s head got loose. Anyway when the mamas come back, Kanna saw them and made her usual escape. Because there are 2 Chitose’s now, they couldn’t tell which is the real one. What the? And when Satsuki points out the robot Chitose is the real one, the real Chitose says how he is way past anger and it’s somehow really painful. Yup, I can’t believe after living for so long with their Chitose son, they can’t tell which is the real one. Or maybe they’re just pulling a fast one. And to think he had a day of no torment (unless you count Kanna’s one), but this has got to be the worst of them all.
 
The reason why Kisaragi’s acting weird recently is because she has to go back to her ‘kins’ in episode 10. To cut things short, Kisaragi is an alien!!! WHAT THE??!!! This explains why she’s always doing strange and weird things. But I felt that this alien thingy puts a damper on it all. Come on. An alien? Though Kisaragi is reluctant, she has to anyway. Even Kanna is scared of her ‘kins’. Because of that, Chitose and the other mamas try to bring her back. Yeah, the producers go through all that trouble even designing and putting those alien subtitled wordings on screen when Kisaragi had a chat with them. But in the end, they allowed Kisaragi to have her stay on Earth extended until Kisaragi completes her mission by turning Chitose into a respectable adult. Uh-huh. Like I’ve mentioned, he’s got a long way to go.
 
Hazuki decides to fulfill a long time dream by opening her own little shop in episode 11. Of course everybody helps out. Nagatsuki and Fumitsuki patrons the new store and Nagatsuki thinks of buying a scarf for Mutsuki. As Nagatsuki returns later to purchase it, only to find Chitose at the counter (covering for Hazuki as she wonders off) as the latter wouldn’t sell it. So an argument ensued. But when Hazuki comes back, Nagatsuki gets all flustered up and leaves. So Hazuki later has a little chat with her and the next day planned for Nagatsuki and Chitose to work together in the store. They didn’t get along at first but eventually they tolerated and understood each other. Yup, they both handed that scarf to Mutsuki. In the end, Hazuki has to leave for another world concert and left the keys to the store to her trusted families. At least, now Nagatsuki has a more favourable view on Chitose. 
 
Okay maybe not so. That’s because in episode 12, Mutsuki decides to ‘run away’ from home and temporarily stay at Hazuki’s store for the time being. I’m not sure what it is, but it has something to do with Chitose though it’s not his fault. Because of that, the other mamas took turns doing chores and even become Chitose’s homeroom teacher. Kisaragi’s turn is the funniest one, because she just stood there stone cold and only answering when she’s supposed to, before leaving when the period’s over. Hahaha. Anyway, Nagatsuki went over to have a chat with Mutsuki as Chitose has his flashbacks with Hazuki and Minazuki when he was younger and how they bond so well. Of course tension is mounting between Nagatsuki and Chitose because the former is pissed off with the latter’s ‘don’t care’ attitude. Why, Nagatsuki even came close in spilling the beans that Fumitsuki has a crush on him but was just stopped in time by her. So another duel? Well, not really, Nagatsuki’s pleading in tears for Chitose to bring her Mucchin back.
 
Well, it seems Nagatsuki will be heading back to China in episode 13. So there lots of talking and drama as the gang try to say their goodbye to her, though Mutsuki’s back with them. But they have to find Nagatsuki first and she’s no where to be found. So Chitose eventually manages to find her when Nagatsuki returns to her home and they both have another round of chatting on the rooftop. Something like how Nagatsuki always wanted a warm family and such. You know this kind of stuffs money can’t buy. Bla bla bla. To cut things short, the next day, Nagatsuki says her goodbye to everybody and she even hugged Chitose and says she loves him too. In sibling sense, that is. Looks like they accept each other. Well, the end credits show how everyone gets on with their normal lives. Like Fumitsuki looking and admiring a photo of herself with Chitose sleeping on her lap on that school field trip return train trip which Nagatsuki gave to her earlier on. Yeah, Kisaragi’s still ‘exploding’ things and Kanna seems to be quite friendly with Chibisuke. But I wonder if Kanna’s part of the family because you could see her in that group photo in the end.
 
If you think it’s over, well think again because there is more to learn as the lessons continue in Happy Lesson The Final. This one isn’t much of a series but an OVA with just 3 episodes only. And from the title, you may have guessed that this is gonna be the final instalment of the Happy Lesson series. Yup, graduation is near for those who have sit through thick and thin watching this series.
 
The first episode begins with a Star Wars like opening words of narration about the mamas arrival. But other than that, everything remains the same. From Chitose’s attitude to the mamas, Fumitsuki’s and her failed confession attempts to Student B and Student C’s mocking love plays. It’s a hot summer spell when the principal wants the teachers to each give their suggestions on how to make the school a better place. Well, Mutsuki’s suggestion for a place for a library got picked but the thing is in order for her wish to be carried out, an old unused building within the school grounds is set to be demolished. Since Mutsuki has many fond memories during her time as a student there, she’s hesitating and spacing out a lot. It’s quite obvious. So much so the other mamas ‘forced’ Chitose to go have a talk with her. The sudden of it all made Chitose and Mutsuki in a ‘compromising’ position as they blushed. Once they composed themselves, they have a little chat.
 
But before the old building is to be torn down, the principal suggests a test of courage one night before the tearing down and it seems it’s Fumitsuki’s lucky night because she gets paired up with Chitose. Yup, she’s gonna confess alright. What are the chances of success? So the mamas played the monster scaring part and even Hazuki’s there! Umm… Minazuki looks more cute than scary in that cat outfit. Along the way, a broken floor board caused Fumitsuki to injure her feet so Chitose has to carry her. Once the duo accomplished their mission, they’re greeted with that ‘unbelievable stares’ from the other students. I mean, a guy like him giving the class rep a piggy-back ride? Chitose immediately drops her when he realized his situation and gives the excuse that the test is over. But wait… Summing up all her courage, Fumitsuki finally confesses she likes him. Finally! Everybody’s in shock, students and the mamas alike. At the same time, Mutsuki is alone at some classroom. Probably remembering the time she had back then.
 
So the second episode has the whole school excited and abuzz about the new couple. I’m not sure if Fumitsuki is regretting her actions but Chitose doesn’t seem to be bothered, though he’s been thinking about Fumitsuki’s confessions. Even the other mamas are supportive about Chitose having a boy-girl relationship. Besides that, most of this episode is about Mutsuki school girl days. During that time, Mutsuki had a crush on her former teacher. Because he was her first love, Mutsuki has come back to visit the classroom every night since the building’s demolition is announced. More spacing out and drama. Chitose went to talk with her 1 night there. Chitose’s talk seems to be full of anger. Yeah, something like how he’s telling Mutsuki to stop dwelling in the past, always talking like an honour student and that she has never considered his feelings. Bla bla bla. In the end, Chitose just ran away. Later that night, Chitose and Fumitsuki met at the park. What’s the occassion? Chitose’s there to apologize to Fumitsuki that there’s someone else he loves. What the? This jerk is in love with his Mutsuki mama-cum-sensei? Well, like I’ve said before, the mamas are young enough to be his girlfriend. It must be really heartbreak for Fumitsuki to hear those words after all those attempts.
 
Fumitsuki didn’t really freak out but just accepted that in the beginning of the final third episode. I wonder if it’s alright having such a relationship with one’s mama even though they’re not blood related. I’m a bit confused too. Demolition day arrives but the night before, Chitose along with his mamas (except Mutsuki) decides to stop the demolition by staying at the building. Even Fumitsuki’s there. The next day, the head of the demolition team seems annoyed that there are people blocking the path to his demolition destiny. By that time, all the other students and teachers joined in the protest as well. For the 1st time we see Student B and Student C getting a hug from Fumitsuki because they decide to join in too. Yup, no super punch. Even the principal joined in because she values the opinion of her students. Mutsuki arrives and asks that demolition guy boss 1 hour to persuade them to evacuate. So some talk about hope and dreams and I felt that it was like 1 big reunion because soon Nagatsuki, Kanna and even Hazuki made their appearance. That demolition boss couldn’t wait any longer and sends his team of robot construction workers to settle it.
 
As predicted, those robots are no match for their human counterparts and are soon defeated by what each of the characters are good at. In a way the building is saved from being demolished. Later that night, Mutsuki and Chitose are having a private chat on their rooftop. We find out that Mutsuki’s real intention of going back to the building is to find a letter to her beloved teacher she lost back then. However she was unable to find it and mentions that it would be quite embarrassing if someone would’ve found it and read her letter which contains her true feelings in it. But now Mutsuki says that there is someone more important to her and that her beloved sensei looked so much like Chitose. Before you know it, those 2 lock lips! A mother and son kissing each other?! Oh my goodness. Even though they’re unrelated but the though of it still… Soon the 4 other mamas turned up and wants a kiss from Chitose too. Yup, just like they say, what Chitose now doesn’t need is a mother nor a teacher as they changed themselves into bridal outfits. Looks like they’re upgrading themselves into Chitose’s lovers! Wow. Now it’s really 3 in 1. From mamas to teachers and now girlfriends! And with 2 sisters, this guy has it all! A truly harem anime! With that, Mutsuki says that this is Chitose’s graduation from his Happy Lesson. Congratulations!
 
So in the final scenes as the end credits are rolling, we see everyone still doing the same thing and finally, on the school rooftop, Chitose seems to have found Mutsuki’s letter and gave it to the latter. Mutsuki allows Chitose to open and read it and to Chitose’s disappointment, it didn’t sound like a love letter, though Mutsuki says it’s one. We won’t really get to see what she really wrote but I guess, they’re all happy in the end.
 
Overall, I guess everything’s pretty okay. The hilarious slapstick comedy makes it enjoyable to watch and life’s never dull especially when Kisaragi’s around. I just want to note that there’s actually a 5 episode OVA which were released before the 1st season. It’s just about how Chitose and the mamas met and the relationship between Chitose and his 2 sisters. But it it doesn’t amount to anything serious. And 1 of those episodes is actually the 1st episode of season 1 itself. Plus, the DVD version has added extra episodes which are actually from the other seasons like episode 11.5 of season 1 is actually the 9th episode of season 2. Pretty confusing.
 
The name of the titles starts off with some double/twin Japanese words (the right term can’t come to mind) like ‘doki doki~’ or ‘fuwa fuwa~’, which in Japanese have real meanings. Sounds cute the way they say it. Though the voice acting fits each of the character’s personality well, I kind find the colouring to be a bit ‘dull’ and it’s not so brightly coloured like in today’s anime. Perhaps it’s a year 2002-2004 production and probably they want to maintain some consistency in the drawing, art and animation throughout its seasons.
 
Perhaps cuteness is the theme for the first season as you can see 1 character in chibi form at the title screen and during the mid-intermission, it’s like a character transforming from her normal bishie self into a little chibi version before once again transforming too big to fit the screen. You should see it if you want to know what I mean. And there’s this cute little dance from our ladies at the end credits in chibi form. But all that chibi form has been discarded in the second season as the title screen has just the title, the mid-intermission is just a group photo gone wrong and the ending credits just show a pic of the group posing on some street. Same thing in the final season. But this time there is no mid-intermissions and the end credits show a little aftermath of the episodes.
 
I happen to notice why most of the female characters have their names end with ‘~ki’. Then upon doing a little research, I find out that they are actually named after the old names of the Japanese months like Mutsuki is January, Kisaragi is February, Yayoi is March and so forth. In addition to that, their surnames start off with a number which corresponds to the month number that they are named after. I see. Since there are only 10 main female casts, I guess nobody’s named after Novermber or December.
 
After watching so many Happy Lessons, it’s impossible not to learn anything from it. Yup, it doesn’t matter if you’re not blood related, as long as there is love and trust, even friends and aliens can be part of your family. And a mom doesn’t necessarily have to be that 1 female person who gives birth to you, but anyone who’s caring and treats their child with proper love and care. Uh-huh. It’s the power of being together as a family and staying happy as one.
 
Though I’m not really sure if Chitose has really decided to be Mutsuki’s girlfriend, but I rather felt that he and Fumitsuki would make a cute couple. As the series progresses, you’ll see how Chitose changes though generally on the outside he’s still the same person. He’s sure got a different way in showing how he cares for others. Yeah also, everyday’s a lesson for him. With that, I’m done with this series and I too have graduated and passed with flying colours! Wohoo! Congratulations to me! Masters or PhD anyone?

Here is another really nonsensical comedy. But this time it doesn’t take place in outer space nor in the big city. Where is it, you say? It’s in the tropical jungle! You might have guessed that I’m talking about Jungle Wa Itsumo Hare Nochi Guu or also known as Hare+Guu.
 
Even though the setting is in the jungle, just to note that this isn’t exactly how jungle life is about or portrayed. If you really want to know how life is among the luscious trees and abundant flora and fauna, it’s best to see a documentary on it. Or else when watching this series, please turn off all your logic senses and turn on your non-stop laughing mode.
 
In this 26 episode half hour series, you’re gonna see a lot of wacky and comical stuffs accompanied with lots of wacky and interesting characters that inhabit this tropical jungle. As mentioned, the whole series is generally a comedy one. So there isn’t going to be other aspects like romance, drama or even slice-of-life. Even if there is, somehow it will all go back to the comedy element. You’ll be laughing like mad (most of the time) in this crazy series. I know I did.
 
Firstly, we have this main protagonist, Hare. He is naturally a good natured boy who lives along with his one kind mom, Weda. Why is his mom one kind? Like most mothers, she loves her child. But that’s about it. Other than that, she likes to drink, get drunk, likes to have fun and is lazy so much so that Hare is the one who does the cooking and cleaning in their jungle hut. So you could say that he is a good son in a way. But Weda’s character doesn’t really make her a bad person or somebody you would hate from the start. She’s not evil. Just that she’s laidback and ‘blur’ at times (okay, maybe most of the time).
 
But all this is gonna change when one day Weda brings home a cute looking homeless girl called Guu. Why? Because she has no parents so Weda decides to take her in and live with them. I wonder if that qualifies as a good reason because she’s already got Hare and it’s not like she did quite a good job in raising him. Okay, so I don’t know that part but I suppose it’s more the merrier. Well, everything seems okay to Hare at first. Guu is quite kind, polite and with that innocent face, isn’t she just adorable. At first.
 
That’s because the next day when Hare wakes up, he finds a completely different person. He’s wondering if she’s the same person yesterday. Yup, Guu is the same person alright. Only thing is she has undergone a total personality change. Now she looks and sound monotonous and is really really weird. Sometimes having ‘tenticle’ arms, if you know what I mean. Now this is where Hare’s life takes a turn for the worst. In each episode, you’ll see that Guu enjoys making life difficult and miserable for Hare. Why, you could say that she’s a number 1 troublemaker and instigator. And you may wonder why is she doing only this to Hare? Well, firstly I think that Hare’s the only one who notices that Guu is different from her first appearance and secondly, the other characters are ‘blur’. Yeah, they’re oblivious to Guu’s mischieves and pranks and think ‘it’s like that’. Note that this doesn’t mean that people who live in the jungle are stupid. Plus, since Hare is the only one who has a direct reaction from Guu’s actions, I guess this make it even more interesting for a second, third time for Guu, doesn’t it?
 
So it’s also like this in every episode. Because Hare knows very much of Guu’s nature, he gets worried and concerned of what she is going to do. Uh-huh, he becomes all frenzy and in a state of panic everytime Guu says something because to Hare, after some deep analytical thinking of his, he thinks what Guu says and mean are completely different and concludes that she’s up to no good. Because of that, Hare will freak out and jump the gun as he yaps and blabs like a psycho so much so that sometimes Guu has to give him an uppercut in the stomach or jaw to shut him up. On purpose, of course. Thus, Hare will do ‘whatever it takes’ to stop Guu. But most of the time, Hare is the one who bears the end result of Guu’s doing. Poor kid. I’m thinking that when Hare grows up, he’s gonna end up being a psycho himself. So young already got mental breakdown. But he’s really a tough kid having to endure chaos after chaos in each episode.
 
Before we continue, I’ll just briefly run through the other ‘interesting’ characters in the series first. Remember just how weird is Guu? She has a habit of swallowing things. Yeah, really swallow things. Because of that, when Hare got swallowed into Guu’s stomach, there seems to be even weird things in it. Like several buildings, a hundred legged cat, a floating lips fish and 2 human inhabitants in her stomach! They are good friends (probably after living so long in Guu’s stomach) Seiichi and Tomoyo and they both don’t mind living in her stomach! Now that’s a positive way of looking at things. Unless, they too are blur cases. Later, Guu’s stomach takes a 3rd inhabitant. In episode 8, a young air stewardess, Yamada, attempts to commit suicide by drowning because of her love problems but Guu ‘saved’ her by swallowing her. However, Yamada’s emotional instability makes her a dangerous person because she becomes unpredictable and violent! Yeah, Hare found that out the hard way. Though Hare manages to calm her down and give her some hope (temporarily), but Yamada is still that same violent person when it comes to matters of love.
 
Then there’s the head of the village and principal of the only school in the jungle, Chourou. The first thing you’ll notice about him is his big erm… hairy chest hair. Yeah, he thinks it’s a symbol of his strength and manliness. So much so he won’t hesitate to give the young ones or anybody a rub on his chest hair for boosting morale and such. Eww… But in episode 3, his world came crashing down because… You’ve guessed it, Guu. Yup, in Chourou’s cooking class, Guu steals his chest hair for some device (using it as an afro hair wig?) but luckily, Chourou’s chest hair grows back again quickly again the next day. Even though Hare tries to stop Guu, but you know how it all ends up, don’t you? Unfortunately, Guu steals it again and because of that, Chourou’s chest hair wouldn’t grow anymore, rendering him with low self confidence. I think it’s because he had a dream that Guu stole his chest hair, everytime Chourou sees Guu, he shivers in fear and even calls her ‘Guu-sama’. He’s like a scared obedient dog and follows whatever Guu tells him to do. Poor guy. Though the next time you see him with his chest hair, it’s actually just a strap on. At least it’s not so bad.
 
I’m not sure but I notice that the jungle has quite a handful of students only but the school looks like it has several classrooms and fits for about 100 students. But perhaps the jungle is so vast that they could build quite a ‘big and spacious’ school. I mean, as far as I can see, there’s only 1 class and all of the students fit into there, regardless of age. Plus, other than Chourou, there’s only 1 other teacher, Reiji. But he’s not so much as a model teacher as he likes to spend his time sleeping. Even in class! Yeah, and I thought only students do that in boring lectures. But this is too much. So much so you’d be thinking, what have the students learned so far from him. Actually they don’t and even once they got pissed off by it. Uh-huh. Self study periods most of the time. Again note, this doesn’t mean jungle people are stupid.
 
Then there’s Reiji’s little sister, the red-haired and cute Mari. She has a crush on Hare but after seeing and misinterpreting a situation in episode 4 whereby Hare forcefully had to play along with Guu to tell her that he loves her or else Guu won’t stop her usual bugging, Mari considers herself as some tragic shoujo manga character. Part of Guu’s doing? You can bet on it. In addition, Mari loves Weda a lot because Mari herself doesn’t have a mom and always yearned for one thus she sometimes get jealous or mad when she sees Hare not appreciating having his mom around.
 
Other children of the jungle inculde Toposte, who is Chourou’s grandson and fears that 1 day he might have a bushy chest hair like his grandpa due to genetic reasons, Waji, a kid who is always laughing for whatever (or even none) reasons, Gupta, an older student but immature for his age, Wiggle, another older student who is in love with Weda but his attempts are futile whenever he tries to prove his love to her, Lavenna another older student who is quite an indecisive young lady. There are 2 other young students in Hare’s class, Sagin and Raaya. But I suppose this 2 only make up for the numbers in the class or else the class wouldn’t look like a class as they don’t have any proper dialogue. Even if they try to speak, the scene would change to another.
 
Other inhabitants of the jungle include the lovey-dovey couple Adie and Chet, Weda’s friend and drinking partner Rebecca, and making his appearance in episode 5 is Dr Clive. Yup, Hare got sick on that episode and decides to go visit the new school doctor. He heard of rumours that he’s mean to guys and only kind to girls. Furthermore, this doctor is a pervert as he spends his time reading playboy magazines in the infirmary. When Dr Clive finds out that Hare has a young looking mom, he’s quite interested to flirt with her, of course much to Hare’s objections as he tries to keep him away from his mom. But as fate would have it, we find out from Weda as she calmly points out that Dr Clive is actually Hare’s real biological father! Before Weda came to the jungle, she was living in some rich and big mansion and got into a relationship with Dr Clive that time, resulting in Hare’s birth. She was 14 years old then. Because of that, Weda and her late dad don’t see eye to eye as the latter disowned his own daughter. That is also the reason why Weda had left her home and head for the jungle. Weda didn’t want to tell Hare at first as she was waiting for the right time to do so. Poor Hare initially thought that he was the reason why Weda got disowned but luckily his mummy consoled him. So it’s kinda odd to see father and son squabbling and arguing most of the time as Dr Clive would still try and use every opportunity he gets to flirt with Weda.
 
Perhaps Dr Clive got to much of a bargain because there’s a woman who’s crazy about him in episode 10. And old hag, that is. Everyone seems to notice Gupta’s long hair and Hare suggests for him to get a haircut. But Gupta freaks out because he doesn’t want to get a haircut from the jungle’s creepy ol’ barber, Dama (reminds me of a character from Lat. Yeah, must be her afro hairstyle). Eventually Gupta gets one and when Dama laid her eyes on Dr Clive for the 1st time, it’s more than just love at first sight. It seems Dr Clive resembles ‘very much’ to Dama’s beloved late husband. We eventually find out that Dr Clive and Dama’s late husband don’t really look a like and the only thing that they have in common is their white hair! Haha. So it’s so bloody hilarious to see Dama turning into a monster and alien (not to mention a change in her voice as well) as she chases Dr Clive here, there and everywhere while Dr Clive is having a hard time avoid being captured. She’s really dangerous when she’s in love. And he’s really terrified when she is. Hare thinks that he got a taste of his own medicine. But it seems Dr Clive can’t go back to the infirmary anymore because Dama will always be there looking for him, so he decides to seek refuge in Weda and Hare’s house, much to the latter’s dismay.
 
Oh, I want to mention that in this series, the jungle is inhabitat with lots of weird looking creatures. One of the more common and abundant ones are called Pokutes. They can be seen walking here and there just about anywhere (or even lovey-dovey with each other!) and make really weird kind of noises. They look like the alphabet ‘H’ at first sight as they have 2 legs, no hands and I think those 2 limbs on top of their head are their ears or what. Yeah, they have that face which reminds me of those statues on Easter Island. Plus, Pokutes are the main food source and staple food for the inhabitants of this jungle as they could be used to make several Pokute dishes, though they’re considered to be protectors of the jungle sent from Heaven. How ironic to eat ones ‘saviour’. Perhaps it’s a custom here.
 
So most of the episodes sees the gang and their hilarious ‘misadventures’ as Guu tries to scheme something but a frantic Hare decides to do something to stop her. Like in episode 2 whereby Guu is first introduced to Hare’s class and Hare is concerned about what kind of facial impression she will put on. But you know what’s gonna happen, right? Guu swallows them all into their stomach. But being the blur people they are, they think it’s some dream. Eventually everybody accepts Guu regardless whether they’re aware of her true nature or whatsoever. Ignorance is bliss. Then in episode 4, Waji tells Guu that laughing makes your troubles ‘fly away’. You should hear how Guu laughs! So damn eerily funny! Like a breakdown robot going HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Also, Guu gives everyone a ‘greeting kiss’ to boys and girls alike by nearly swallowing the head!
 
In episode 6, Guu tells Hare that it’s a pastime for people to take baths in their clothes. Of course Hare doesn’t believe so as he’s always done so naked. Hare went around asking the other inhabitants for their opinions and comes up with a conclusion that people do really bath with their clothes on. Then on the day the school decides to go to some jungle bath, Hare bathes with the guys with his clothes on but his male buddies find it weird because they we’re all bathing naked. This prompts Hare to get embarrass and think that Guu has played with his mind once again as he storms into another section. But this time as he bathes naked, he notices that he is in the girl’s section. And there is no way out… Taihen desu yo.
 
Or in episode 7 when Hare gets a weird present from Guu as his birthday gift. How weird is it? Well, it isn’t anything tangible and it’s more like an out-of-body experience. In other words, Hare and Dr Clive switched bodies! So Hare gets to see first hand what live is about being Dr Clive. Hmmm… It seems Mari is quite fond of Dr Clive too as she always make lunches for him. So the next day when Hare returns to his normal body and is feeling a little sympathy for his dad, he finds out that Dr Clive is still the same ol’ perverted guy he is. Yeah, all that feelings just went down the drain.
 
Something big, black, hard, shining, stinking, strange-voiced monster is terrorizing the jungle inhabitants (so they think) in episode 9 when Weda goes missing on a hunting trip. It’s funny to see each of their interpretation of that black hard shining thingy and I suppose Dr Clive drew something hentai (hint hint). Because the others are so blur on what is it, only Hare seems to figure what that perverted doctor drew. In the end, it’s revealed that the black hard shining thingy is actually a bear. Yup, Hare got injured when he tried to attack the bear but it seems Guu transformed into an older version of herself, tackled the bear and in a way saved Hare, who’s barely conscious. This older version of Guu somehow reminds me of Maya of Tenjou Tenge as she looks more serious and mysterious. Throughout the series, this version of Guu remains a mystery as I’m not sure what is her real intention and purposes as she only appears very seldom. Even that cute and innocent version of Guu. Not sure what she really is as her transformation to this one is also very seldom. And probably I think she would transform into the cute version much later in the series for a short while just to make viewers remember and refresh their memories about this one.
 
Then in episode 11, the gang heads to the beach but Weda and Hare dozes off on a raft as they lose sight of land. Yeah, they got back when Guu transformed herself really large and brings them back ashore. And nobody notices it all. Mari gets abducted in episode 12 by some Boa Team and the rest goes off to rescue her in Power Rangers style. Fortunately, this was all a play. Later Guu holds a weird contest among Dr Clive, Mari, Wiggle and Hare whereby the winner gets Weda. Everyone is so enthusiastic about it like as though it’s a game, even Weda herself. In the end, Hare wins but good thing is that he got his mom to himself but bad thing is, he still has to do all the work and chores. Or that Pokute legend in episode 15 whereby Chourou tells Hare how Rebecca was raised by Pokutes when she was young. Yup, her house has full of it doing whatever chores.
 
By episode 13, things are starting to pick up (as well as the weirdness) as Hare meets Weda’s ex-servants, Bel and Asio, who are taking a vacation so that they could come to the jungle to look after Weda. Bel the maid is quite infatuated with Weda ever since young and gets nosebleeds everytime just thinking about her while Asio the gardener has ‘scary eyes’ as said by the others, though I don’t see how scary they are. They look just normal to me. Asio has a tendency to correct or state the true situation to Bel (which is often correct) which prompts Bel to get mad and pound Asio without mercy.
 
A flashback episode 14 which explains how Weda got kicked out of her house because of her pregnancy. Weda realizing that the mysterious man in her dreams is actually Asio in episode 15. Mari deciding to role play in episode 16 by making Weda her mom and Dr Clive as her dad as the trio slept together like a family, making Mari quite happy. A health check for the kids in episode 17 with Hare finding out that their examining doctor is that older version of Guu. Also, Asio and Weda disguised themselves as transfer students and gets a health check from Dr Clive. Yeah, almost everybody’s a blur case not knowing who those 2 transfer students are. Yeah, even Weda gives herself a new name as a cover up, Wendy. And since Dr Clive knows that Wendy is Weda, is he gonna do something hentai to her? Hare’s really worried and has to put a stop to this.
 
Dr Clive’s nightmare with Dama continues in episode 18. Yeah, Dama hasn’t given up on him yet and Hare has to reluctantly help Dr Clive. Yeah, more monster and alien-like terrorizing from Dama. In the end, Dr Clive dyed his hair grey which successfully prevents Dama from chasing him any further. That simple, huh. So for the rest of the season, Dr Clive’s hair will be in grey colour and no longer white. Consider this as a safety precaution. In episode 19, Hare is fed up of the annoyance of Bel and Weda so much so Guu gives him some magic stick which could change a person’s character. Yeah, Guu is having fun changing everyone’s character. Also, everyone suspects that Chourou did something weird to them especially the girls, who they think Chourou did something hentai on them. Though Chourou doesn’t know anything in the end, his innocence is proven when it is actually a cat who has an uncanny resemblance of Chourou’s face. Good thing it doesn’t have Chourou’s chest hair.
 
It gets more insane in episode 20 because it’s snowing in the tropical jungle! Hare thinks it must be Guu’s doing. Of course it is. And it all started because Mari read a book on the Alps and wishes how it would snow here as well. And because it really did snow, nobody’s really bothered whether it’s a dream or something wrong as they had their fun in the snow like having a snowball fight. See Hare, you’re too tensed up, you need to relax. Okay, maybe he’s better worrying because he’s more funny that way. Haha. Just kidding. Then after the snow melts in episode 21, Hare wonders how life is in the big city. And just like that, Weda decides to pack her bags and return home. Wah! So fast decide ah. Hare thinks it’s just a short visit but Weda says they’re leaving the jungle for good! Oh the horror. Be careful of what you wish for. With that, everybody says their emotional goodbye to Hare, Weda, Guu, Bel and Asio. And guess what. They’re taking a plane there and the pilot is… GUU!!! Oh dear, things couldn’t get any worse for Hare as he’s panicking and freaking out once again, much to Weda’s ire as she knocks him out. It’s gonna be a looooong ride, buddy. So hold on to your seats.
 
The gang have arrived in the big city in episode 22. Also, they meet up with Weda’s overprotective paranoid bodyguard, Robert. He looks cool with his handgun of this as they all arrive back at Weda’s huge mansion. Besides having to adjust from a jungle life to a more civilized culture, Robert (and Guu) decides to train Hare for his own protection because Robert tells them that this concrete jungles is filled with lots of danger. So another short flashback in episode 23 of how Robert met Bel as the former admires the latter and thus decides to to the same for Weda but found out that Weda is totally opposite of what he perceives her to be. So as Hare tries to show Robert Weda’s good points, Hare and Guu ended up being taken hostage in a bank robbery. Yeah, Hare’s really freaking out and saying something like how he don’t wanna die and such while Guu is having a whale of a time. She’s enjoying every moment of it. Poor Hare. Now he has to go through this terrifying situation as well. But the robber leader seems to be friendly with Hare because of some video game thingy. Once Weda and Robert knew of the situation, they both sprung into action and managed to save the day. See how strong a mother’s love is. And that robber leader seems to accept his fate and defeat as he intends on using that free time in jail to play and conquer whatever video game he and Hare discussed during the hostage crisis.
 
Hare receives a letter from Mari in episode 24 asking him about the life in the city. I wonder how Mari knows the address of the mansion. At the same time, Dr Clive has left the jungle to attend some lecture in the city and coincidentally meets with Weda and the 2 got into a hotel room. Of course Hare is surprised to see his perverted doc here and together with Guu and Robert, they pull off crazy tactics to pull them apart. Yeah, Guu dresses up Hare like a girl as a disguise. But in the end, Weda left on her own will. And just like the moral of the story as Guu says at the episode’s end "And the moral of the story is… No pants". Whatever that means, but it was sure funny. Hare’s feeling pretty bored in episode 25 though it has been a few days of ‘unwanted excitement’ in the city. So Guu suggests to play some hide and seek game whereby Guu becomes ‘it’. But Hare soons become terrified when he finds out that Guu is swallowing everyone in the mansion! Hey, even Tomoyo, Seiichi and Yamada are running out and about. Sometimes it’s nice to get a little fresh air. While getting lost in the mansion’s garden (it’s like a jungle in here too), he stumbles upon a cabin and an elderly lady there. To cut things short, she’s Hare’s grandma.
 
So the final episode 26 also sees why Weda doesn’t like her mom too much. Something like she wasn’t supportive of her when she was pregnant with Hare. At the same time, Hare’s home sick and wonders what his other jungle pals are doing so much so Guu transform herself into a robot and allows Hare to use it as they have a peek of the jungle life with Hare and Guu. Seems pretty okay, unless of course it’s Guu who’s causing all the trouble as usual. Finally Weda and grandma meet, but Weda now decides to leave the mansion and head back to the jungle. Change her mind again, huh. However Hare is reluctant to leave as he just got to know his grandma. Yeah, Bel doesn’t want her oujo-sama to leave her too. But in the end, I guess it’s good that Weda and grandma reconciled, though Weda is still adamant in her decision to go back to the jungle.
 
If that doesn’t feel satisfying, that’s because there’s a second season or rather 6 episode OVA after that called Jungle Wa Itsumo Hare Nochi Guu Deluxe. Personally, though it still retains the silliness and hilariousness, I kinda find that this particular season isn’t as funny as the first. In addition, the episode stories are shortened by half meaning that in 1 episode there are 2 stories. Yeah, and there’s that amusing short eye catch as its mid-intermission.
 
So basically it’s like a continuation from the first season. The whole gang are now back in the jungle. First off, probably Reiji has been sleeping on the job too much so much so that the school has got a new substitute teacher called Yomi. Everybody’s real afraid of her except for Hare who has just returned from the city. Why? In short, she has mood swings. Violent and temperamental. You don’t want to make her mad or say something unpleasant. Yeah, Hare found out the hard way too. Here comes the pain. And in a way it ended up Yomi having Hare as her boyfriend. I don’t want to have a girlfriend like her. Also, Chourou’s chest hair returns but this time it engulfs the entire jungle so much so that Chourou went missing after that.
 
But the biggest surprise is that Weda is now pregnant and that Dr Clive and Weda are going to get married! Uh-huh, even Bel, Asio, Robert and grandma have arrive at the jungle. So round 2 of that weird contest whereby the winner gets Weda continues with Dr Clive, Asio, Bel and Wiggle vying for her attention. But in the end, nobody really won because I think Weda just wants Bel and her mom to congratulate her on her wedding. Other than that, other hilarious adventures include the time when Mari transforms into an adult version of herself after thinking that Hare may like a grown up version of herself. But I suppose it’s best for Mari to stay the way she is now. Then Hare got his hair dyed all white which spells disaster. Because Dama now thinks that Hare is her beloved dead husband! Run Hare run!
 
Then a time where Guu uses her magic stick (now in a different form) to change everybody else into little children which makes Guu the ‘eldest’ one. So it’s tough being a grown up. Also, it seems that Hare too becomes a violent person when he becomes drunk. Uh-huh. He could challenge Yamada as well. But another important point in this second season is when Hare and Guu take a trip back in time when Weda is still pregnant with Hare. Because Hare tries his best not to let a young Weda know his identity (and possibly ruin or screw up his future), he tells her that his name is Ame, because it was raining back then. And so thus back to present time, Weda has given birth to her second child called… Ame because of the events back then. If you think about it Hare’s name means sunny and shiny whereas Ame means raining. How contrasting.
 
But the last episode in this season sees the return of that bald robber leader. Yeah, he’s back in the jungle and is going to get his revenge on Weda. Yup, he’s got Hare and Guu hostage once again. And just like any loving mother would do, Weda decides to sacrifice her life by falling off a cliff in exchange for Hare’s life. Dr Clive tries to stop her but too late. Everybody could only watch in horror. Then Dama arrives in time to save Weda and soon a battle between the ol’ hag and bald robber begins. Dama is so different here. She’s no more that love sick chasing monster she used to be. Yeah, she’s much more ‘refined’ here. In the end, Dama not only defeats the robber (yeah, some super kick to the crotch) but they both end up in love with each other and got married!
 
And there’s more to where that came from. A third season called Jungle Wa Itsumo Hare Nochi Guu Final has another additional 7 episodes. Also this season’s pattern follows quite closely to the second season’s in the sense that there are 2 stories in 1 episode and I also felt this wasn’t as funny as the first season. And as the name suggests it’s the last of the Hare+Guu series. Yeah, all good things must come to an end.
 
This final season starts off with Weda getting a video message from the Bel and Asio back at the jungle. Because of that, they decide to do a video letter reply and with that, Weda decides to go back to the city once more to see her mom. So it’s back to the city again. Well, Dr Clive isn’t coming along. Hare seems to be blabbing how bored he is and hates the city and wishes to go back to the jungle again where his friends are when Weda decides to enrol him in a private school. Thing is, Hare instantly fell in love with a cute blond girl named Rita. See how love could change a man. At least he has something to look forward to.
 
Of course in school Hare tries to fit in while Guu is trying to give Hare a usual hard time. So Hare has his fair share of being a bully victim. Robert tries to protect from afar (trying to snipe a kid? Seriously) but gets thwarted by Dama. Hey, what’s she doing as the school’d janitor? So much so Rita couldn’t tolerate anymore and tell off those bullies in class. I guess it’s pretty embarrassing but to get a scolding from a cute girl. Bloody suey. Hare’s grateful though.
 
And just when Hare’s about to settle down and probably have a steady futue girlfriend, Weda thinks it’s time to head back to the jungle again. Oh brother. Yeah, the class threw a farewell party for Hare. Of course Bel is very sad to see her oujo-sama leave and so is Rita. After some heart to heart talk, the trio soon leaves. But that’s about it for Rita. No more major stories which involves her. And I thought there’s gonna be some romance for Hare. Even Guu’s pretty disappointed with a ‘normal’ ending. She’s really hoping for some screw up. Upon arrival, they are greeted by Mari who’s quite eager to see them. Uh-huh, Weda is only in her lingerie because it’s quite hot back here. Yeah, she looks hot too! Have she no shame? But that isn’t so important. Anyway, everybody’s glad that they’re back except for Mari who’s thinking that Hare may be two-timing her behind her back. But luckily Hare says that Rita’s just a friend and nothing more, prompting Mari to become happy again as she forgives him. If only more girls were like that. So a messy welcome back party as Weda gets drunk as usual. And poor Hare. He’s got to do all the cleaning up once it’s over.
 
Other than that, we see Toposte getting all worried if he would have his grandpa’s chest hair as Hare tries to sooth his fears. Yeah, Chourou is now a big hairball of chest hair. But after some flashback storytelling, Toposte doesn’t fear having chest hairs anymore because… it could make him popular with girls, just like grandpa during his heydays. Haih… Then Lavenna takes a walk to do an errand and meets all kind of strange and weird incidents from the jungle’s inhabitants but didn’t think of them as anything extraordinary as she writes in her diary at the end of the day how peaceful her day was. Haih…
 
Also, it’s like an RPG game style as Hare along with Tomoyo, Seiichi and Yamada turned into RPG characters to save Ame from the evil older Guu version as they meet other jungle inhabitants in different character roles in their quest. Rita too makes her appearance but it isn’t anything much. I like the title with the first half as ‘RPG Test Version’ and the second one as ‘RPG Pirate Version’. Hahaha. Then Yomi and Hare have their date but it was disasterous. A heartbreak Yomi thinks she’ll never fall in love again, that is, until Toposte passes by. So is Yomi and Toposte a new item? Not really sure. And Hare and Dr Clive decides to be good to each other so that they could be good role models to Ame. It’s rather hard, isn’t it? But they manage to pull through.
 
Things get a little serious in the final episode of the 3rd season. Though it is mentioned vaguely somewhere in the 1st season that Weda has an older brother and sister but that’s about info you’ll get on them. Here, the 2 siblings find out that their late father has left his vast fortunes to Weda’s name in his will. Because of that, they decided to hire a professional assassin to take out Weda. Luckily Robert’s there or else Weda would’ve been toast. Well, after some intense exchange of gunfire, we see that the assassin is a pretty hot and sexy blonde. Yeow! But when that hot babe suddenly changed into Dama, Hare freaked out. Yeah, something about how Dama sees herself. I don’t really get it.
 
Anyway, the face-off between Dama and Robert is just like a series of talks. Uh-huh, something about some guy who is using Dama as a pawn to do his bidding. Some flashbacks here and there as that guy found her and train her while Dama’s keeping all this a secret from that robber husband of hers. After Dama realizes that she has been deceived, she jsut walked away to settle things her own way. While Robert seems to be concerned about Dama, Hare doesn’t really care. Yeah, the story’s been blown out of proportion and I’m still trying to understand what’s going on. How’s it all got to do with it all. But in the final scenes we see Robert fending off some unseen assassins for the 7th time back at Weda’s home. Because of that, Weda decides to do something about it. Yup, she’s going back to the city to face her siblings. And that face of hers is now really scary. Something about this fight will cost them. Too bad Hare. You and Guu have to tag along too. The end.
 
Overall, I felt a little disappointed of how it all ended. It’s like a prelude to make another season but unfortunately, the anime ends just there. But generally, I still love all the hilarious and silly antics and all those freaking out moments from Guu and Hare respectively. Like in some episodes how when Hare realizes that everything has gone wrong in the end, the weather suddenly changes from a dry one to a heavy downpour in an instant as he screams in frustration.
 
Probably because of the way things ended, it didn’t do much justice to the other characters as well. In order words, it didn’t really tie up properly what happens to the other characters. Maybe it’s back to their usual lives, nothing much happening out of the ordinary. But with Guu around, I’m sure it’ll be more than just havoc and chaos. Yeah, she could be a professional troublemaker, if there’s such a job in this world. Oh there is, but not officially. Hehe.
 
The art, drawing and animation for all the 3 seasons are pretty consistent with each other. I like Guu’s voice acting which is voiced by Naoko Watanabe. It really does fits the characters role and personality. Meanwhile Rikako Aikawa does an amazing job for Hare’s voice. Yeah, you’d expect him to freak out and become psychotic in every episode.
 
Of all the theme songs in the series, my favourite one is still the ending theme for the first season, Ohashi, sung by 0930 (pronounced Okusama). While the opening theme song for the first season, Love Tropicana, sounds like a song fit for a jungle themed series with all that fanfare, the second season’s opening theme song, Love Tropicana Deluxe has a line whereby Hare is reading and cramming it so fast that it sounded so funny, though I’m not sure what he’s saying. And the opening animatino is pretty wild too. The second season’s ending theme Fun Fun And Shout has the gang singing like broadway style with Chourou in the lead. If you’ve guessed the name of the 3rd season’s opening song is Love Tropicana Final, then you’re right. Yeah, they’re all sung by the same group, Sister Mayo. But the final ending theme Teruteru Bouzu,is sung by Rikako Aikawa which is an acoustic solo. You could see more and more of the characters gathering as each episode goes by. Though I’m not really sure what it all means.
 
So just be warned, do not attempt to pull any stunts like what Guu did. It’s definitely impossible. And we certainly do not need another Guu to mess up and further complicate our lives. Heck, if we wanted to do so, we would’ve done it by ourselves, wouldn’t we? I just hope Hare is able to keep his sanity when he grows up. Hecl, probably he’s one already. And a final reminder. Jungle people are not generally stupid, though the ones here are generally blur cases. In the jungle the might jungle the lion sleeps tonight…  No lions here. Only Pokutes. And with all that racket, certainly it’s hard to get a good night’s sleep.

Saa

July 20, 2007

  Nandemo jibun dekiru tte,
  Tsuyogaru dake tsuyogatte mo ne,
  Kimi ga inakya nan mo dekinai shi
 
When this song starts off, it really does get you into the mood. You’ll feel like like getting up, moving your body and do some shuffling with your feet to the very catchy tune of this song. Yup, that’s the effect this opening song of the anime series Mamotte Shugogetten, Saa, had on me.
 
  Konna chippoke na heya ga ima ja,
  Chotto dake hiroku mieru yo,
  Reizouko akerya nan mo aryashinai ya
 
Unfortunately for me, this is one of my favourite songs which doesn’t have a karaoke version. Or at least an instrumental version would do, but this song has either the full length version or the tv size version. I mean, I’d prefer to have a karaoke version of it (if there is ever going to be one) since there are several background vocals accompanying the lead singer in it. Thus each time, I have to do a duet with the group, SURFACE.
 
  Saa suikonde kure, Boku no sabishi sa,
  Kodoku wo zembu kimi ga,
  Saa kami kudaite kure, Kudaran koto mayami sugiru,
  Boku no warui kuse wo
 
Even though I have been singing this song for quite some time already, I’m still having trouble on occassions trying to pronounce the lyrics perfectly. Yup, since this song is quite fast paced, it would sound almost as if I’m doing a rap. And the bridge part is a tongue twister killer part. My tongue is really twisted when I try that part. Aaa blpshhh ugkmablu bla bla bla. Hehehe. Success rate: probability a person would live up to 200 years old. That bad, huh. And because of that, I’m having a hard time trying to remember the lyrics as well. Though the chorus is much easier.
 
  Saa waratte kure, Mujaki na kao de,
  Mata boku wo chakasu you ni,
  Saa uketotte kure, Kono tsura sa wo,
  Saa wake aimashou… Saa
 
Another thing I like about this song is the funky bass playing. At certain parts of the song it’s quite obvious like in the beginning and the part just before the next verse. Even the electric guitar plucking at the solo part sounds funky and synthesized albeit is just a short one. Though generally I would say that this is another rock song but there are trumpets/horns blazing in the music as well. Other than that, I guess I’ll have to try my best again. Practice time!
 
  Yappari kimi ga dare yori suki dakara,
  Sayonara dekinai…

Ichigo Mashimaro

July 14, 2007

This reminds me of a younger version of Azumanga Daioh. How so? Because there are cute little girls, cute little girls and cute little girls. No, I don’t have a fetish for little girls nor do I have a lolita complex. But that’s what I think when I watched Ichigo Mashimaro or literally Strawberry Marshmallow in English.
 
So if you go "Eeeeeyeeerr… So cute… So adorable.. So kawaii…" whenever you see such little kids, then I think you’d probably want to have a look at this anime as well since cuteness is the main theme. Cute girls doing cute things in a cute way. Therefore, cuteness is definitely guaranteed. Have I mentioned cuteness too many times? Now isn’t that cute?
 
This series has only 12 episodes so there are enough cuteness to go by. Luckily it doesn’t span 100 of episodes so much so that the cuteness appeal would’ve been lost over time. And probably by that time too, those little girls would’ve grown up and become pretty and sexy teenage ladies. Just kidding. Though this series is of a comedy genre, you won’t really be laughing every single second of it (okay, most of the time). A little bit of character bonding, drama and slice of life as well.
 
Of course the first episode starts off by introducing our main protagonists of the show. We see Nobue Itou, a 20 year old college student who rides a scooter and is a habitual smoker. She’s like the big sister among the other main characters in the series. She’s a little annoyed that she ran out of cigarettes and proceeds to go to her little 12 year old sister’s room, Chika, to borrow some money. Since Chika’s got a headphone on, she can’t hear a thing as Nobue decides to play a little prank on her but ends up slipping herself. Would you give more credit to somebody who is a bad pay master? Well, yeah. Chika isn’t going to lend her.
 
Then suddenly come ‘flying’ into Chika’s room from her window is their next door neighbour Miu Matsuoka. Unfortunately, she tripped and she fall face flat on the floor. Yes! This Miu girl is my favourite character and the main reason why I watched this series in the first place. Also because of her, I feel that the entire series is funny because of her or else it woul be just plain and dull. How interesting is Miu? In one word, she’s a brat. Okay, maybe that’s not enough to describe her. In addition, she’s a troublemaker, mischevious, naughty, irritating, instigator, suka cari pasal and all those equivalent words you could think of. And everytime she does or say something bad enough, she’ll get her typical punishment. That is, you’ll see her lying face flat down on the ground with her arms spread out. Though we won’t get to see the process of how she ended up like that, but seeing the end result is funny enough to make you laugh because the scene changes quickly to this ‘punishment’ with a short moment of silence. Hahaha. I love this part when it happens to Miu. This will happen at least once in every episode. Trademark. Sorry if I sound like a sadist. But I think Miu is one too and she deserves it in a way. Sometimes you might feel like you want to strangle and punch her in the first but because she’s just a 12 year old and look cute in doing it (even if it’s totally wrong), you may think otherwise.
 
After some whatever blabbings from Miu, another friend of theirs comes ringing their door bell. It’s the 11 year old besepctacled Matsuri Sakuragi. She is the most naive and gullible girl I have ever known. Because of that, she is often made the teasing subject for Miu. Poor girl. I wonder if she really understands what’s going on. Yeah, a crybaby too. But luckily, she’s got ‘big sis’ Nobue to comfort and ‘protect’ her from the ‘evil’ Miu. So which means, the usually cheerful Chika is the only ‘normal’ one I find among the gang. Anyway, she came crying because of somebody eating her pudding…?! But as usual Nobue comforts her but Miu too wants some pudding and shows her teary eye innocent face to Nobue. Yeah, she ends up outside the roof with her typical punishment face down.
 
So as Nobue eventually left to get some cigarettes, more antics and disturbings from Miu on Chika and Matsuri like Miu trying to wrestle Matsuri wearing some face mask and sunglasses…?! I wonder how they could all really tolerate her. But the main thing about this episode is that Nobue’s birthday is coming soon and the trio are pondering what to give to her as a birthday present. Since they notice Nobue likes to smoke, they’re thinking of making a paper ashtray. Since they want it to be a surprise, they’re trying their best not to let Nobue find out what they’re doing. Of course Miu is up to her no good again like after pestering Chika to cook because she can’t work on an empty stomach, she goes to sleep. Haih… Not only that, when they’re halfway making the present, because they’re little kids, they start to doze off and Miu whacks them awake with a paper fan and tells them not to sleep on the job. She’s the one to tell because Miu herself too fell asleep and gets a taste of her own medicine from Chika.
 
By the end of the day, Nobue comes home and after a shower, she enters Chika room to see the trio sleeping soundly. Well the place is kinda messy and looks like they managed to finish it and even wrote some colourful notes as birthday card messages. Nobue reads them and feels quite touched, that is, until she reads Chika’s one which says something about her body size (big, growing, fat, I suppose). Would any girl that age feel insulted? Yeah, Nobue takes a marker pen and wrote something on Chika’s left cheek. The next day as the 3 little girls head for school we see the words written on Chika’s cheek which goes something like "Currently running away from home". I guess Nobue’s pretty satisfied she got her revenge and her birthday present. Though, I’m not really sure the meaning or implication of that line.
 
Episode 2 introduces another 11 year old to the gang. She’s Ana Coppola from Cornwall, England. I was surprised that Ana’s voice actress is no other than the talented Mamiko Noto. It did remind me of her when I first heard her voice. But there’s something strange about Ana. No doubt she’s from England, she can’t actually speak proper English and she is very fluent in Japanese! Reminds me of my case, a banana ;p. Because of that, the newly transferred Ana is telling herself that she must’nt let other people know that she can speak Japanese. However, while doing this on her way to school, she’s already busted because Miu and Chika by coincidence cross paths.
 
And in school, she got into the same class with Matsuri and at first Matsuri is quite afraid of her as Ana takes her seat next to hers. But overtime, these 2 will become friends as Matsuri finds out about her secret and knows that Ana is a nice and polite girl and decides to help keep her secret. So in class, Ana just sit there keeping quiet, trying not to have any conversation with her classmates as it may leak her embarrassing secret. So the reason they conclude about her non-talkativeness is that she’s a foreigner who doesn’t seem to be fluent with Japanese yet. But at times, Ana’s secret comes close to being exposed as Ana herself isn’t cautious like how she first writes her name on the blackboard using hiragana letters and how she says the traditional "Itadakimasu" line before her meal and even had brought chopsticks for her bento. So Ana tries to cover up by clumsily using the chopsticks in an awkward way. Perhaps they’re all little kids that they can’t tell Ana’s acting or maybe really blur. By the way, there’s a kid in their class, Sasazuka, who’s always being picked on by their homeroom teacher. Whether it is his fault or not (usually the latter), the homeroom teacher will ask him to go stand outside. Poor kid. And he has no choice but to do it.
 
Besides Miu even causing trouble in her own class (like drawing some funny stuffs when the teacher asks her to do some maths problem on the blackboard), Matsuri brings Ana back to Nobue’s place after school and to Ana’s horror, she saw Chika and Miu there. But I think Nobue instantly takes a liking for Ana as she hugs her. Yeah, Nobue really has a thing for little cute girls especially Ana and Matsuri. Maybe she’s immune to her little sis Chika and that’s why Chika don’t get that same treatment. As for Miu, we all know why lah. But the story ends when troublemaker Miu writes Ana’s surname in kanji, which irritates Ana a lot. Yeah, Coppola means like hole, bone and cave in that writing. Another punishment for Miu outside the roof. She really deserves it as Miu’s been pissing off Ana ever since she got here.
 
It’s ironic to see Matsuri trying to teach Ana some English in episode 3. Because they were’nt successful, Ana invites Matsuri over to her house to study together. Back in Chika’s room, I’m not sure why but Miu’s being tied up with some rope. Whatever it is, I’m sure she deserves it. Matsuri tries to go out and to Ana’s place without letting the others know but you know the harrassing Miu. Nobue must be really doing this to satisfy her cute craving for Matsuri because she suggests her to wear some cat hat complete with a cat’s tail. Gullible Matsuri does and even adds a ‘~nya’ at the end of her sentences. Though Matsuri is on her way and slightly lost, she bumps into the quartet and tries to bluff her way out. Yeah, who would believe that there’s an alien behind them. And only Matsuri could fall for her own trick.
 
Anyhow, the gang decides to tag along as well. Once there, we see Ana’s real big mansion. Uh-huh. Rich kid. Ana arrives at the gate to greet Matsuri but to her horror sees the rest of the gang there. Except for Miu. She ran off after ringing the bell. Because of that, the rest got in and Miu got left out. As we tour the house and see the grandeur of it, everyone’s quite impressed as at the same time Miu tries to get into the house through climbing one of the walls. Once she manages to do so, she got chased by Ana’s pet dog. Don’t worry it’s a friendly chase but of course Miu’s exaggerating it. Once settled, Ana shows them her CD collections, have some tea, staring at a huge map of England, and of course life wouldn’t be complete without Miu pissing Ana off further and making the latter cry. Luckily Ana found her comfort in Nobue. Later, they discover Ana’s dressing room collection and are amazed at her numerous dresses hanging there. Naughty Miu tries on a little girl’s bra and doesn’t seem satisfy with it and even puts her hands on Ana’s just to try for size! With that, Ana drops her English book as Nobue picks it up. Secret busted. Luckily Nobue thinks Ana is teaching a friend in English when she asks her how much this dress costs. A slip of Ana’s tongue causes Ana to answer in Japanese. Secret really busted.
 
Nobue’s smoking habit is starting to kick in in episode 4. Just like a poor church mouse, she once again heads to Chika room and tries to take some money from her mailbox-like piggy bank savings. Of course there wasn’t any money. As usual, Miu tries to wish real hard for it before tossing it out of the window. That’s not even her stuff. Later something about a tissue led to Nobue having an idea of them playing a doctor-patient thingy with Miu as the doc while Ana and Matsuri as her assistants. I think Nobue wants to see how cute her Ana and Matsuri darling are in a nurse outfit. Good thing is Miu has no chance of becoming a future doctor because she flips up Ana’s skirt and says some unpleasant comments after examining Chika. Yup, that usual punishment again. So Nobue takes over the doctor role and examines Matsuri who’s playing the patient in labour now.
 
But the main thing about this episode is Nobue finding a part time job so that she could have some money to buy cigarettes. She ends up applying as a waitress in a cafe. Though the pay is reasonable but the skirt is a bit too short and there is a no smoking policy on the job. Looks like Nobue has to just deal with it for the time being. While working there, Ana and her mom are having their meal there when Ana spots Nobue. Later, Ana tells Chika and Matsuri about it. The trio tries not to let Miu know but too late, she’s already heard it all. Now Miu plans to patron the place. Nobue’s pretty annoyed to see the 4 there. And she’s their waitress. Miu’s first annoyance is when she lifts up Nobue’s skirt only to make Nobue stick the ice cold glass of water in her cheeks. So a war of words erupted, which is bad because it affects the cafe’s reputation. No choice, Nobue has to suck it in for now. The customer is always right.
 
To make things worse, all 4 of them came back day after day. This is really pissing Nobue off as she has no choice but to tolerate and serve them. Sabarlah… The other 3 girls blame it on Miu and somehow got drag into all this but can’t back out now. Miu is ordering expensive and fancy desserts and says it will be on Nobue’s treat. Though the rest of the girls have a guilty conscious, but I guess there’s so much Nobue can only take. So Nobue puts some Tobasco sause in Miu’s dessert. Since Miu isn’t the kind to learn her lesson, soon she starts tripping Nobue, making her drop plates and glasses. Nobue retaliates by doing the same. A confrontation looms as Nobue starts and the 2 started a food fight throwing everything possible at each other. It’s a real havoc! Some old man got victimized there as the food got all over him but he just sat there without any reaction while the food fight goes on. In the end, Nobue gets fired and her pay is used for the cleanup and damage costs as she only manages to buy 1 pack of cigarettes. Back home, Nobue’s not gonna let Miu go scot free as she shows the bill of 275 Yen and writes ‘nengumai’ (annual rice tax) on Miu’s forehead. I don’t think that mark will come off so soon as we see Miu trying to wash it off.
 
Miu and Ana’s spat continues in episode 5. Well, you know whose fault it is, right? Uh-huh. They’re trying to outdo each other by seeing who’s taller standing on stacks of magazine. Unfortunately they both fell down when the stack became unstable. Then in Ana’s class, she herself is quite popular as she receives several love letters. One of them even in English! Yup, "I fall in love with you! I love you! I need you!". So young so expressive so creative. Of course Ana’s still trying to keep her Japanese speaking a secret. So far so good. That is, until Miu who’s playing baseball outside swings her bat too hard and the ball breaks the window and flew into Ana and Matsuri’s class. Miu just barges in to retrieve it. That’s when the horror starts (for Ana) when they saw each other. Yup, Miu called her Coppola.
 
Back home, Ana’s gonna ‘kill’ Miu with a recorder (?!) but is restrained by Nobue. But Miu gets her usual punishment. It seems Nobue seems to favour Ana and Matsuri more by paying attention to those 2 rather than Chika or Miu, much to the latter’s dismay. I mean when the gang are shopping at the supermart, Ana gets whatever she wants but as for Miu, all her stuffs got rejected. So an attention-crazed Miu does her way of getting attention, causing trouble, that is. What else. She does some during nabe dinner time and eventually gets her usual punishment. Later, Nobue, Miu and Ana are taking a bath together. Miu and Nobue are staring at Ana and are admiring her beautiful complexion (and her small chest…?!). Of course Ana felt a little embarrassed even if it’s girls who are looking. Because of Nobue’s bragging on how cute and adorable Ana is, this causes Miu to blow her top and in her jealousy she cries (no crocodile tears this time). Nobue felt pity and allowed her to sleep with them for the night. With that, Miu felt a little more secure. No matter how bratty she is, Miu’s still a little kid. But the next morning when Nobue wakes up, she finds Miu’s stomach bigger. Yup, that naughty kid’s back to normal and plays a prank that Nobue may have impregnate her. Some things never change. Don’t worry, it’s just a pillow under that.
 
It’s a darn hot summer in episode 6 as the 4 little girls trek back from school in the sweltering heat. You may think it’s the heat that it’s getting to Miu’s head as she’s up to another mischieve again but she’s always been like that all year round. Miu suggests a rock, scissors and paper game to see who would carry their school bags. Though Matsuri lost, Miu ends up carrying all the bags because of the latter’s comments about exercising some power to control over the losers. Later as Nobue, Chika and Miu are in Nobue’s air-conditioned room relaxing, Miu suddenly opens the window letting all the hot air in. You know what happens after that lah. Miu and Chika have another round of weird rock, scissors and papers in which Miu lost again. This made Miu to use Nobue’s handphone to call the soba shop and order something and soon the police. Of course Nobue isn’t amused and stops her since it’s her handphone.
 
Meanwhile Matsuri is at the vending machine and her trouble starts when the can she bought starts rolling down hill. Maybe she’s always around Miu so much so trouble follows her. At the same time, Ana is trying to pronounce ‘ginger ale’ on a can in another vending maching at a store when an old man (yes, that victimized one from Miu and Nobue’s food fight several episodes ago) tells her how to pronounce it. Same expression too. Ana recognizes him and quickly leaves to find Matsuri. Later when they regrouped at Nobue’s room, Nobue heads out to get some food and Miu ‘borrows’ Nobue’s handphone to record some lines like "I’m hot!". Miu got the others to do so too but wants Ana to say hers in English. When Nobue comes back, she finds the girls sleeping and Miu napping on her bed. Miu wakes up and wants to go to the toilet but since it’s too hot she decides to hold it in. Eventually she can’t hold much longer and went. When Miu comes back, she saw Chika sleeping in her place and soon gets annoyed and starts waking her up. Before you know the 2 started arguing which causes Matsuri to sleep in the comfy bed. Uh-huh, they drag Matsuri into it too so much so Miu threw a pillow but it hit Nobue in the face.
 
Once it’s over, Nobue decides to sleep on the bed herself. Not wanting to be noisy and wake her up, Miu suggests writing on paper to communicate. It’s funny to see when Matsuri writes if she could go to the toilet, Miu replies by drawing a black devil. Hahaha. Chika then felt the need to sneeze but Miu quickly tries to prevent her and pounds on her. Luckily Nobue’s still asleep. Then as they ‘converse’, Miu again draws 2 black devils this time, followed by a sketch of some guy (hmm… quite good sketch there). This made Chika wanting to laugh as she’s trying hard to hold it in. But when Chika hits Miu’s head with a paper fan, Miu then draw 3 black devils. Hahaha. Nobue wakes up in the evening and they all have some popsicles on the rooftop. Looks like Nobue caught a little cold herself. The next day as the little girls walk home from school, Miu comes up with an idea to see who carries everyone school bags. She suggests whoever steps in the sunlight has to do so. Everybody does by walking under the shades and when finally Miu spots a long stretch of no shades, she decides to make a big jump, but falls short. Yup, Miu becomes the mule again. With that Miu decides to call Nobue but when Nobue’s handphone rings, her ringtone is set at the loudest "I’m hot!" and surprises everyone there including Nobue herself, who’s quite embarrassed about it. Now Nobue’s really pissed off. Punishment time…
 
Continuing with the hot summer vacation in episode 7, Ana and Matsuri have followed their respective families for a vacation. So this leaves Nobue, Chika and Miu. Miu has a project of her own. That is, she’s planning to observe Chika and Nobue with her camcorder. Yeah, this kid could really get creative (irritating is perhaps the right word) with the camcorder. By this time, Matsuri has already come back from her trip and shows them her photos of her in the countryside with some goats. Miu continues her observation by taking away Nobue’s cigarettes and giving them to Matsuri. Though Miu told Matsuri not to give the cigarettes back to Nobue, naive Matsuri eventually does after Nobue went to go talk with her. Also, Ana comes back and shows a video play she made during her vacation. Ana’s dressed up in a white lacy dress and trying to speak some English but mixes it up with her Japanese. This prompts Miu to show what she has recorded too. It’s a recording of Chika sleeping. She focuses the camcorder on Chika’s little chest. That’s not so bad… yet. Miu then takes some stuff toys and stuff it under Chika’s chest to prop it up. With that, Chika gets really annoyed and Miu gets her usual punishment.
 
The next day the 4 little girls decide to go to the swimming pool but since it’s raining, it ruined their plans. Nobue comes to pick them up with an umbrella and tells them that she’ll bring them to the beach instead. So okay, unless you’re ogling at Nobue’s sexy swimsuit, perhaps there’s nothing much to see for the rest, unless you’re a lolita fetish. Thing is, when Nobue told Miu to bring her camcorder, Miu forgot to, disappointing Nobue because she was quite looking forward to it. When Nobue says how ‘flat’ Miu’s is, this prompts Miu to take off Nobue’s top, leaving her in a state of embarrassment. As punishment, Miu is buried in the sand with only her head sticking out. Yup, they’re gonna have a watermelon splitting event and the watermelon is Miu’s head! Well, Ana had a near miss. After some pleading and soon gets released and uses a real watermelon this time. When it’s Matsuri’s turn, she can’t take the whole thing and just got ‘sick’. Uh-huh, she had to lie down for a while. When it’s Chika’s turn, following Miu’s direction, Chika gets further away from the watermelon and ends up near a stall.
 
After that, the gang heads for a swim in the ocean. Nobue teaches Matsuri how to swim which causes Miu to feel a little jealous again. So when Nobue gives her some swimming lessons, Miu is happily paddling a certain distance when she surfaces only to find the rest of the gang had gone back on shore. Once it’s sunset, they all head home. Miu gets back to her irritating camcorder observation back home and is annoying Chika’s who’s doing her homework. But the next day when school reopens, Chika is surprised that Miu’s summer project earned her 2nd place. Yup, it’s an exaggerated summer vacation like Nobue taking an aeroplane, Matsuri meeting a kappa, and Ana investigating a crime scene murder in a Sherlock Holmes outfit. While Chika is impressed, Miu says that she may have got 1st place if she had included this picture. Miu whips out a photo of Chika’s ‘inflated’ chests while she was sleeping then. A very pissed off Chika gives Miu her punishment.
 
It’s the festival in episode 8. But before that our little girls are having a little exam. Miu as usual is causing some ruckus just before the exam finishes by hitting her table with 2 recorders. And when Miu tells the teacher out loud that Chika won’t show her answers to her, the teacher threw a chalk at her but Miu blocks it with her recorder and smirks. This causes Miu to stand outside the class as punishment. Back at home, Nobue is helping the girls put on their yukata. Miu plays with Matsuri’s name because the latter’s name also means the same thing in Japanese. Miu soon leaves but comes back dressed as a red ninja with a basket over her head. Miu takes off the basket only to reveal another mask she’s wearing. And later as Miu’s causing her usual annoyance (like throwing CDs as her shuriken and attacking with her toy sword), Nobue finds some black marks around Miu’s face which make her look like a panda. Funny. Soon it’s Miu’s turn to be dressed in a yukata by Nobue as she asks Miu to strip naked. Though Miu playfully feels ‘violated’ but she’s glad that she’s gonna wear a yukata.
 
As the gang heads to the festival, they’re wondering why Miu has brought a bag of random stuffs. We find out why. At the festival she’s planning to use them as barter trade in exchange to play a certain game at the stalls like that goldfish scooping thing. Of course, the owner isn’t dumb and Nobue has no choice but to pay for her. It seems Miu is quite skilfull, getting lots of goldfish. Though Miu says she’s saving them, after Nobue praises her, she releases all the goldfish back. Yeah, catch and release, she say. Later Miu teases Matsuri to say some tongue twisting word. Matsuri is trying her best but manages to pull through with Nobue’s help. As they get something to eat, they spot Miu trying to sell her random (and useless) stuffs by making a makeshift stall. Though some guy comes by and says nicely that she needs to get a permit to sell, Miu says she isn’t selling because she hasn’t sold 1 and soon packs her stuffs and quickly leaves.
 
They heard some drum beat getting louder and notices Miu up there causing another trouble as she’s calling for her Nobue Itou onee chan to help her as the authorities are trying to get her off. Nobue covers her hears and says to herself that she doesn’t know her. Oh the embarrassment. This isn’t happening. Eventually, Nobue has to as she apologizes to the authorities and promise to be strict with her. But as the fireworks start, they couldn’t see a thing because it was blocked by trees (or perhaps they’re rather too short). So back home, the gang played a little firework of their own when Miu toss some ring on Nobue’s head causing that sparkler to go off, making her mad at the same time. Nobue yells that she intends taking Miu back to the festival and selling her off. Miu then asks her 2 goldfish she got from the festival, James and Richard, to save her.
 
Every girl goes through that stage where they’re concerned about their weight and figure. Is it Nobue? Nope. It’s more of Chika. In episode 9, after having some potato/yam snack, Miu comments how fat Chika has gotten. Even though Chika’s words are meant to be mischevious only but Chika took it quite seriously. Chika first tries to weight herself on a scale she freaks out seeing her weight. Thing is, Miu’s there too and simultaneously freaks out as well. And then, Miu gets into her mind games again when Chika’s making some cookies like saying how she’s eating lots of cookies even though she’s just tasting. Chika slips into further depression and tries to avoid eating anything else. So much so Chika doesn’t even take a bite when Ana brings some cake over. Thinking that her weight may have gone down a little, Chika checks again and to her dismay, it’s still the same.
 
Nobue notices Chika reading a diet book and tries to cheer her up by playing a game of baseball outside with the rest. Chika throws a powerful pitch which hits Nobue’s side. And because of Miu’s comments as the umpire, she got ‘sit out’. When Nobue finally manages to hit the ball, Matsuri can’t even catch the ball and is covering her head in fear, though the ball landed quite a distance away. So they tried some football. Nobue is taking on Ana when Miu decides to steal the ball by flipping up Ana’s skirt. You know Nobue’s fetish, right? This causes Nobue to be slightly distracted. With that Chika steals the ball and scores. GOOOOOAL!!! But it was too powerful and hit Matsuri off the swing she’s sitting on. And for some unknown reasons, Miu too throws the baseball right at Nobue, hitting her.
 
Even back home, Chika continues with her dieting by doing some simple exercises. Even when Chika and Miu are bathing together, the latter still as usual playing some mischievious pranks on Chika but since Chika’s too preoccupied with her dieting, you could say she’s ignoring Miu a little. Okay, so maybe except for the part where Miu nearly drowned her. Once done, Chika finds Nobue in her room going through the diet book. Chika is still upset with her weight gain but Nobue tells her that since she’s growing up, her weight too has to increase with her height. With that, Chika gets her self-confidence back. But as for Nobue, after flipping through the diet book and then weighting herself, to her horror she noticed that she has gained some weight. Planning to go on a diet? Hehe. So how different is she from Chika?
 
In episode 10, Nobue’s out on her scooter and stops at a scenic spot with a cabin-like restaurant next to a lake. Meanwhile back home, Miu is playing some hypnotizing game with the rest. Of course she’s a failure. At one point when Miu and Chika left the room to go to the toilet, Matsuri really belives that Chika had turned into a dog because Miu and the dog only returned to the room. Of course we know it isn’t lah. Chika’s just taking longer than usual and soons show up. But their hypnotizing show comes to a halt when Nobue calls Chika and asks them to come over to the place she’s at. She’s not saying why as it’s gonna be a surprise. I find it a little weird for Nobue to ask the little girls to come over by themselves. I mean, it’s dangerous, don’t you think? The rest of the episode sees how the quartet try to get there but end up being ‘delayed’. We know Miu is gonna be the main source of it, right?
 
For instance, Chika wanted to take her bicycle but since it’s got a flat tyre, she has to walk to the bus stop, the place where they agree to meet. And that Miu is on her little scooter as she whizzes pass Chika who’s having a hard time catching up. Uh-huh, something about competing with an old man as he’s jogging pass by. When Chika does, she’s catching her breath and notices Miu, Matsuri and Ana on the bus leaving as Miu waves goodbye to her. Yeah, they got split up. The trio gets off at the destined bus stop and Chika manages to catch up with them once again. On foot. Miu scoots off in her scooter again with Chika giving chase, leaving Matsuri and Ana behind. So Matsuri and Ana are trying to find Nobue at the park. Matsuri got tired and decides to rest on a bench when Mastsuri’s pet ferret suddenly runs off. Some foreigner finds the pet ferret but is asking directions in English, in a weird accent. Ana’s in a little panic. Fortunately and ironically, since Matsuri has studied a little English, she takes the foreigner to the place he wants to go. As for Miu and Chika, they’re at a vending machine as Chika decides to get herself a drink. Before Chika could push the button of the drink she wanted, Miu beats her and presses another drink. Do you just feel like slapping her?
 
Because the kids are taking too long, Nobue decides call them but nobody picks up their handphone. Luckily she manage to get through Matsuri’s and says she’ll come get them. Then Miu calls her and begs her to come on some swan boat ride, pissing Nobue off as she yells to come here right away. Well, it’s her fault to ask them to come here unsupervised in the first place, right? Once she manages to round up the gang, she tells them that she wanted to treat them to some cake but since they’ve took an awfully long time, she changed her mind. Of course the girls are not too happy about it and decides to hypnotize Nobue. Yup, all of them tried to. Not sure whether if the hypnotism worked (of course not lah) because Nobue eventually treats them all. Then on after their treat as they’re walking back, Matsuri spots some flowers blooming as the 4 little girls went to have a closer look. Nobue says something like how it’s okay for them to be simple minded. But Chika replies that she doesn’t understand this kind of things. Nobue just smiled and asks them to hurry home as they all took a stroll back home in the setting sun.
 
Episode 11 starts off with the gang as usual gathering in Chika’s room. While Chika is dead serious and busy trying to do her homework, the rest are just idling and hanging around there. Even Nobue is hanging out with them. As usual too, life wouldn’t be complete without Miu’s mischieve like how she gives Chika a used tissue paper. Yup, Nobue just sneezed and used it and Miu had the cheek to give it to Chika as some toilet paper exchange. Chika is a little annoyed not only towards Miu but the rest as well. That’s because they’re so dull and they can’t do anything outside since it’s freezing cold. Yup, winter is approaching. While Nobue soon leaves, the other 3 girls then decide to play some paper sumo. The sumos are made out of paper and they ‘move’ by hitting the table with their palms as though like playing a conga drum. Miu of course is giving irritating nicknames to everyone else and we find out Ana is quite knowledgeable about the sumo culture. Yeah, she may be a sumo fan. Anyway, since the gang are too noisy, they’re pissing off Chika so much so that she kicked the 3 out of her room.
 
Just then Nobue comes back and she has caught a cold. How? Well, while on her scooter and trying to buy some cigarettes in a vending machine, she slip and fell off. So the cold icy snow soaked her clothes. Nobue tries to take a hot bath but the heater’s down and the repairman can’t come until tomorrow. So the kids suggest to go to the public bath house, which Nobue agrees. Funny part is when the gang leaves, Miu dresses and bring stuffs which indicates like as though they’re heading to the beach. Umm… What else is there to do at the bath house? I mean after putting their stuffs, klutz Matsuri even having trouble taking off one of socks while standing and losing balance, take a nice deep warm soaking bath, exchange different shampoos (Japanese and English shampoos, that is), scrubbing each other backs, Miu causing a little disturbance like asking Nobue to press some button on her back but when Nobue does Miu says that there’s no way she could have a button on her back, more soaking but this time Miu farts letting loose some bubbles (eewww… And it stinks too!), there’s that victimized old man all alone soaking by himself. Wonder if he’s really listening to the girl’s conversation. I feel it’s a little ecchi here, though nothing serious happened.
 
Once done, they get dressed, drink some milk and feeling all refreshed and warmed up. As they leave, it started snowing which prompts Matsuri to say how nice it would be if she gets to see Santa Claus. Before Miu could tell Matsuri ‘something nice’ about Santa, she got herself her usual punishment. Isn’t the snow cold? Nobue asks if Matsuri has ever seen Santa but the latter replies she has never even though she tried staying up late. With that, Nobue fuzzily hugs the 3 girls and soon wraps her scard around their necks, like a chain. Miu instantly gets up and wants to join in too but Nobue says her scarf isn’t long. With that, Miu tries to get in but accidentally pushes them as they fall into the snow. Oops. And they’re all just freshed and warmed from the bath.
 
It’s a freezing Chirstmas Eve in episode 12 as Chika gets up and opens her room window only to be pelted by Miu’s snowball in the face. Some wake up, huh. As Noboue’s shovelling the drive way, Ana and Matsuri are having trouble keeping both their feet balance as the road is slippery. As the gang made a snowman, Matsuri seems to be quite looking forward to Christmas and Santa when Miu as usual is gonna tease her that she still believe in that fairy tale but luckily Ana quickly shoves Miu and the latter ended up like her usual punishment position in the snow. Soon they head back in for some warm cocoa. As they’re playing doll house, Miu once again is gonna say that Santa isn’t real when Nobue, Chika and Ana quickly piles up on her. Yeah, like some wrestling move to shut her up. Matsuri wonders if Santa ever came to Miu’s house. Because the other 3 girls are giving Miu that threatening look, Miu has to change her story by saying that she had won over Santa. Uh-huh. Something about when she was 3 years old, Miu asked for a traffic light but got 3 coloured flashlights, when she was 4, she wanted a hot spring but got a secret hot spring set, when she was 5, she wanted a sumo wrestler but got a sumo suit and when she was 6 she wanted a mountain but Santa didn’t give her one as he left a card saying that her wish is too big and that he can’t accomplish it with his powers. With that, it’ll be her parents who will get her Christmas presents. You could say Santa gave up after that. Weird wishes in the first place. At least they aren’t run-of-the-mill wishes. Of course naive Matsuri felt pity for Miu.
 
Nobue remembers the time when she tries to calm a crying Chika because she fears the non-existance of Santa. Well, Nobue dressed up as some weird Santa comes into Chika’s room through her window and puts a present next to her. Thing is, once done, Nobue slip and fell off the roof because it’s slippery. Thus Nobue decides to help Matsuri believe in Santa. That night Nobue, Chika and Ana are dressed as reindeers while Miu is in a Santa suit as they’re heading over to Matsuri’s house. Suddenly a lovey-dovey couple comes by and spots them (I mean, 4 weirdos hiding behind a lamp post. Come on). Nobue seems a little annoyed because she herself doesn’t have a boyfriend yet. The couple are initially surprised to see them at first but the girl gets excited and asks them what are they doing. Miu answers that they’re finding the best couple for a give away trip to Hawaii. Of course Chika denies it all. Meanwhile the guy is asking Nobue some questions (I don’t think he’s hitting on her, mind you) as Nobue’s still pretty annoyed. Then the guy digs his own grave when he says how single people gets jealous easily. Even Miu know what’s gonna happen as she says "Oh oh, he said it". Yup, Nobue lands him a couple of reindeer kicks which sends the guy sliding face down on the road as his concerned girlfriend chases after him. Not only that, Nobue wishes how the stupid couple would break up soon. Serious case of envy.
 
Once they reached Matsuri’s house, they climb in through the window as Matsuri has left it open thinking the real Santa would come. Nobue asks Miu to hand her the present as Miu gave her a toy hammer. Yup, her usual punishment. Even so, when Nobue asks for the real present this time, Miu now gives her 2 toy hammer. You guessed it too, double punishment. Nobue decides to take out the present from the sack herself instead. Uh-huh. It’s a Hale Potey book! But they notice that there’s 1 already lying next to her. So is it the work of the real Santa? Because Nobue’s a little noisy, Matsuri wakes up. The gang panics a little and tries to flee by tiptoe-ing. It’s so funny to see them freeze halfway when Matsuri calls out if it’s Santa. Probably Matsuri hasn’t had her glasses on, is still in sleepy mode and the room’s quite dark. Above all, we know she’s naive. Nobue tells Miu to respond. And Miu responds with a kung-fu chinese crane position while wishing Merry Christmas, which lands her the usual punishment outside the snow covered garden. Hahaha. So Nobue tries her best to talk to Matsuri but without giving away her identity. Matsuri thanks ‘Santa’ for the hard work and tells him to do his best, which made Nobue feel a little happy.
 
While making their way back, they’re talking about Santa’s existance and such as they notice Nobue isn’t still happy because she mentions that one day Matsuri will find out and that they’re just delaying the inevitable. But after some talk like if the belief in Santa makes one happy and such then Santa will be real. Uh-huh, that there’s hope kinda talk. In turn, this made Nobue realize and that Santa will definitely come. The next morning, Nobue wakes up and decides to shovel the pathway and calls for Chika to help but she’s not in her room. When Nobue goes outside, she saw 5 cute little snowman, oddly resembling them. Yeah, very odd. Nobue just smiled. Soon our 4 little girls make their way to school as they spot Nobue on her scooter. They ask her where she’s going and Nobue replied that she’s going to school. Ana wonders and asks Chika if there’s anything wrong with Nobue and Chika replied something about her sis mentioning a cool-looking guy in the morning the other day. Ana and Matsuri are surprised and thinks could that guy be Nobue’s potential lover. But Chika and Miu sarcastically scoffs it off saying "No way, no way". No confidence in her, huh.
 
Then a big change in class. Remember that Sakazuka kid? When the teacher tells him to go stand outside, he just said "I don’t want to". With that, the teacher goes and stand outside himself! HAHAHA! See, you must learn to say ‘No’ too. Meanwhile Ana and Matsuri are having a chat in their classroom and wonders what kind of guy he is Nobue’s potential lover. And as for Chika and Miu, Miu’s getting braver and braver as quoted by their teacher because she just stood up and raise her voice while telling the teacher how Chika won’t let her copy her homework and won’t treat her to sweets. Some things will never change. I suppose Nobue decides not to go to school because we see her relaxing and huffing her cigarette at some park while enjoying the moment.
 
Overall, I think this whole anime is cutely okay. Some funny and hilarious moments there especially from Miu. As mentioned without her, the whole story won’t be that interesting to watch. You could say variety spices up our lives. But this kid is too ‘spicy’. Though there is a 3 episode OVA and has already ended its run in early 2007, I still haven’t watched it yet as I’m waiting for the subs to come out. Yeah, I’ll be anticipating more of Miu’s mischieves. If you can’t get enough of this series, there’s even a video game on it.
 
Since the theme is cute, the drawing and art are made to look that way too. Though it’s not your typical bishies nor those drawing for kiddies, I guess it’s a balance in between. I happen to notice that at times the characters (especially the little girls) have this pink blush on their cheeks. Uh-huh. To make it look cute. Voice acting wise, I could say they’re quite well done and of course my favourite is still Miu’s. Quite fitting for her bratty role. There isn’t any real character developments since there isn’t any real plot. You could guess their personalities from the 1st episode and it stays that way right till the end.
 
The mid-intermissions somehow reminded me a little aobut Azumanga Daioh. Not that they’re both really similar. We see a still close up shot of some body part of Nobue’s (usually below her neck or her hips, but nothing ecchi) with that short single solo wind musical instrument playing (I think it’s a melodian. I could be wrong though) in an otherwise silent mid-intermission.
 
Another nice thing about this series is the background music. Though there are some slow ones, generally they’re all fun and cute to listen to. My favourite one is Hotto Suru Theme which is a cool and easy double acoustic guitar pluckings. It makes you feel like you wanna relax and chill on a hot day. Also both the opening and ending themes sound and look cute, though it doesn’t really appeal to me. By the way, the opening theme song Ichigo Complete are sung by the voice actresses of the 4 little girls while the ending theme Classmate is sung by Fumiko Orikasa, which is the voice actress for Miu. Hmm… They sound so different that I can’t recognize her.
 
I read many viewers say how the manga version is better than the anime. Well since I haven’t read the manga before, I guess I can’t do any comparison about it. Plus, there are quite a number of differences betwen the anime and manga like the character designs and Nobue’s age in the manga is only 16 years old. Also the anime tries to cramp several chapters into 1 episode. Not only that, even the video game is inconsistent with the anime and manga. Is that a good or a bad thing? I suppose it doesn’t matter if it’s all cute. But I still find the anime relatively enjoyable to watch. Though there are some little ecchi scenes which some people may say it’s like kiddie porn because of those parts where the girls took a bath together naked and such. But as far as I’m concern, all the necessary parts are strategically covered.
 
So kids, lesson learned is that never be like Miu. You may think that by trying to be cute Miu’s way, people would become soft-hearted. I think you’ll receive more than that face down punishment, seeing today’s world is so violent. And that "Are you trying to be cute?" respond isn’t likely to be a compliment either. Thus, I can foresee what kind of person Miu becomes when she grows up. But then again, the future may be uncertain and Miu may change. Maybe. But for now, no matter how irritating she is, it’s better for things to stay as it is. Hey, you need someone to bug you in order to keep you on your toes, right? Now isn’t that cute.

I didn’t really watch the other seasons in the series first when I decided to watch Full Metal Panic Fumoffu. Well, you know me. That’s because I read that this is the more light hearted and comical version among the Full Metal Panic series. I mean, the other sequels and prequels too have their share of comedy, but it’s more related to the military life and such. Yeah, what are the chances that I would really understand a series if I watch them in order, since I’m such a blur case.
 
Being not a true Full Metal Panic hardcore fan, as I’ve mentioned, I decided to watch this because of the comedy aspects relating to the high school life of the 2 main protagonist of the series, Sousuke Sagara and Kaname Chidori. In the Full Metal Panic original series, the former is a 17 year old highly skilled military specialist working for some secret organization and is assigned to protect the latter. But every kid that age in Japan still needs to attend high school, right? So you can expect some romance and a little action here. Just like in Ranma and Akane’s case. How long will those 2 have to wait until they manage to confess to each other? Dunno. Perhaps the oblivious Sagara is understandable, but Chidori, she’s really hesitating. Plus, Sagara has a small cross scar on his left cheek which may remind you a bit of Kenshin Himura of Rurouni Kenshin, though there’s no relation between the 2.
 
So it’s gonna be hilarious and fun to see how a military trained background Sagara tries to cope with his normal everyday school life at Jidai High School. Yup, not with hilarious results and outcome based from his military style thinking and analysis. Luckily, Chidori’s there to ‘quell’ his ‘extremeness’. Yeah, everytime Sagara does something wrong, he’ll get his punishment and beating from Chidori in the form of her paper fan. Right smack on his head! Oh the impact. So much so it becomes a conditioned response as the series goes by. Probably that’s Chidori’s way of ‘affection’ for Sagara.
 
Though the series has 12 episodes, some sources has quoted 17 episodes. The reason being is that 5 out of the first 6 episodes are actually only 15 minutes long and the rest are your usual half an hour long story. But so as not to confuse myself, I’ll just use the 17 episodes one for my blog. Another good thing is that the episodes in this series can stand alone by itself without having the viewers to actually sit and watch in order, though it’s advisable to do so. Meaning, most episodes, don’t really bear any relation to its previous one. Most of them.
 
To start things off in the first episode, it’s mainly Sagara receiving a love letter in his shoe box. Yup, it’s a love letter. But what does Sagara think of it? He thinks it’s a threat bomb letter and even goes all out to take safety precautions to diffuse it! Uh-huh, the school’s shoe locker exploded not because of the letter but the bomb diffuse equipment (explosives, that is – fight fire with fire) from Sagara himself! If that poor girl ever finds out his responds to him, I think she’ll dump him. Sagara’s collecting the fragments of the torn letter and concludes it may be a death threat. Yup, he’s making up the missing lines by putting in his own to sound like one. Haih… Of course Chidori from the looks of it knows that it’s a handwriting of a girl and is indeed a love letter but Sagara gives an excuse that the antagonist may disguise himself as a girl to get him and concludes that he’s gonna ‘take action’.
 
I think it’s out of jealousy rather than not wanting to see any harm to whoever that Sagara’s admire is as Chidori decides to stay back after school at the promised meeting place. Chidori and her best pal, Kyoko, really did wait but since nothing much was happening and that girl has been waiting there for a long time too, Kyoko decides to go home first. Come nightfall, 3 gangsters approached that girl and are disturbing her. This prompts Chidori to come out and challenges them as she lands a punch in one of their faces. Because of that, the gangsters plan to rape her and got her cornered when suddenly they got shot by some rubber bullets which made them flee.
 
We see that it’s actually Sagara camouflaging as those bushes and he has been observing that girl the whole time and watching for any ‘threatening’ moves and is prepared to neutralize it if there’s any. Can this guy’s thinking get any worse? That girl approaches Sagara and asks if he has read her letter but Sagara isn’t keeping his guard down as he told her that he had blown her letter to bits and that if she’s some sort of terrorist aftering him or what? Of course a normal school girl would feel offended, humiliated and hurt as she ran away in tears and heartbroken. Well, another fan smack from Chidori. But it seems Sagara still didn’t learn his lesson as the next morning, Chidori manages to stop Sagara in time before he detonates another letter in his shoe box. With that, we find out it’s just a thank you letter from ‘A Mysterious Terrorist’. You know who lah.
 
Episode 2 begins with Sagara playing a shooting game at the arcade and because he took it too seriously and panicked, he caused the machine to explode. Because of that, he along with Chidori and Kyoko are banned from entering the premises again even though it wasn’t the latter 2’s fault. Then at the alley, they’ve been threatened by the gangsters in the last episode seeking revenge as they challenge Sagara. He agrees. Chidori isn’t worried about Sagara’s safety but for the gangsters. Uh-huh. After hearing several gunshots, Chidori asks if he had shot them all but Sagara says he merely fired some warning shots to scare them.
 
Those 3 gangsters are reporting back to their lady boss who is disgusted with their failure even though they outnumbered him 3 to 1. She decides to kidnap Chidori so that Sagara has no choice but to come and rescue her and meet their demands. Next day at school in the student council’s room, the student council president, Atsunobu Hayashimizu, calls Sagara about that video game incident but they both wonder where Chidori is when one of those gangsters suddenly barges in to and tells them about how Chidori is kidnapped by using his handphone and calling his lady boss. If Sagara doesn’t show up, the gangsters will do whatever they want with Chidori. While that gangster is bragging, Sagara locks the door as the secretary of the student council, Ren Mikihara, pulls the curtains. Sagara pulls out a wire and is gonna get that terrified gangster to spill some answers.
 
At the warehouse where the gangsters are waiting for Sagara when the latter finally shows up. The lady boss told him to disarm himself first. It’s so funny to see Sagara taking out weapon by weapon so much so you’d be thinking how he fit and hid all those in the first place. Yeah, those gangsters are starting to sweat. Before the lady boss could order her underlings to attack, Sagara points to the ceiling to reveal the lady boss’s little bro, Yoshiki, tied up and being held hostage. Looks like he’s done his homework too. He too threatens to kill Yoshiki if she kills Chidori as he demonstrates with a push of a button on his remote which brings Yoshiki closer to falling to his death. And something about his motto about never negotiate with terrorists, pissing off Chidori. Then another funny part because Sagara threatens the rest of the gangsters as he lists down their names and whatever trivial info about them and what could happen to them. This guy’s scary. How can he remember all that info with such precision. Soon, all the gangsters panicked and ran away leaving the lady boss alone. No choice, she releases Chidori because she loves her little bro very much. Then it is revealed that Yoshiki’s just playing along. Previously Sagara barged into his class and begs Yoshiki for his help in return for some soft drink. That kids easily bribed. So Sagara’s not merely a psychopath, he’s a really dangerous psychopath!
 
In episode 3, Chidori’s determined to beat the lunch crowd in order to get her favourite bread. Is Japanese school’s like this every recess hour? I mean, they really rush and push each other to buy bread. Worse than pasar malam. Luckily Chidori manage to get hers but spots a troubled Sagara and tells him that he needs to be assertive if he wants to get any bread. With that, he thanks her, takes out his handgun, fires a shot into the air and demands for a plain bread or else he’ll shoot again, pointing his handgun at the crowd now. Of course everybody there panics and soon a stampede occurs as they rush for their safety. Is this his interpretation of being assertive? Yup, those 2 are being called again to the student council’s room and tells them because of the mental stress caused by that incident, the workers refused to return and work there. Who wouldn’t. So for that duration, Sagara, Chidori and their pals have to stand in as temporary bread sellers. But it seems their PE teacher doesn’t like that idea and plans to sabotage it. Since he underestimates Sagara, he gets into all sorts of traps placed by Sagara as a preventive measure to keep the food safe. So much so that he has been caught in the act by the principal. After several days, the bread workers return and everything returns to normal. And all this while Sagara never knew of the PE teacher’s real motive. Call it lucky or blur.
 
Sagara does an all-nighter for some assignment in episode 4. He manages to finish his work with the help from borrowing from Chidori’s notes. As he’s dozing off, he suddenly hears a loud scream and thinks it’s a burglar as he springs into action. Only thing is, the victim thinks he’s the burglar and Sagara gets bug spray in his face. Because of this, Sagara forgot to bring Chidori’s notes to school, thus enraging her. Plus, today’s the day of the assignment’s deadline. Furious, Chidori drags him along with her into a taxi to get her notes back. Upon arriving back at Sagara’s home, they manage to get her notes but the taxi driver didn’t wait for them and goes off. In a hurry, they stole a nearby bicycle and head for the train station. But some mad police woman caught glimpse of them and a frenzy chase ensued. Yeah, that police woman’s really obsessed in getting them. But the bicycle can manage to outpace the police car and keep it at a reasonable distance? But that police woman isn’t gonna give up that easily. Psycho. After they manage to loose the police car (that crazy police woman crashed the car), they reached the train station only to find the train is gonna leave soon. By pulling off some cool sommersault manoevres, they manage to get on in the nick of time. Only thing is, they boarded the wrong train. They’re going somewhere else. By evening, the duo manage to arrive back at school only to Chidori’s horror that their teacher who’s suppose to hand their assignments to fell sick. To make things worse, Sagara knew about this all along but he mentions Chidori never gave him time to explain. Yup, Sagara’s sick too. Thus the whole assignment collection has been postponed, making their crazy day adventure real pointless.
 
Sagara, Chidori and their friends head over to the beach in episode 5. Yeah, some girls in swimsuits. Fan service? Because Sagara uses his shotgun to split open the watermelon, this causes all its juice and seeds on Chidori. In her anger, she storms off to clean up after hitting Sagara with a baseball bat. But it seems they’re being watched by a kid named Masatami Hugo atop some huge mansion on the cliffs. He’s taken by Chidori’s beauty and asks his butler, Washio, to invite her over for some tea. Chidori is approaced by Washio and after his explanations, she agrees. Meanwhile, Kyoko tells Sagara that Chidori may be gone for a while is probably she’s still mad. Sagara sets off to find her and his investigations lead him to Hugo’s mansion. But after being rejected to enter at the gates, Sagara thinks Chidori’s being kidnapped and tortured. Thus, he decides to sneak in. Of course the mansion detects an intruder and Hugo sends Washio and his 2 other subordinates to take care of things. As I’ve mentioned that I’ve never seen the other Full Metal Panic seasons, the way they show those 2 subordinates make it as though they’ve appeared from there before. Though I may be hugely mistaken. Sagara manage to defeat those 3 blokes with ease and with sheer pure luck (Washio even thinks that it’s a detailed calculation of his plan, which isn’t). Soon he confronts Hugo only to see him having tea with Chidori. And after some ‘lecture’ from Sagara, he sweeps Chidori off her feet, leaps off the cliffs as he parachutes down to the beach below. Well, though Sagara didn’t say it, but I suppose Chidori still thinks that deep down inside his heart he still cares and looks out for her.
 
The class take an art field trip in episode 6. And their art teacher seems to be very passionate about it so much so I don’t really know what he’s blabbing about it. Their assignment involves a human model as a subject but nobody volunteers. Kyoko suggests Sagara because he’s good at ‘standing still’. As Sagara agrees and everybody else discusses what pose for Sagara, the former has some private chat with the art teacher. Because of his flowery language, Sagara concludes that he has to be one with nature. Soon Chidori notices Sagara is missing and their art teacher doesn’t permit them to choose another model so they decided to go look for Sagara. Because Sagara wants to be a ‘good model’ he has laid traps along the path to prevent his other classmates from getting close to him. Yeah, they all go down one by one as they try to reach him. Eventually after a hard fought battle, Chidori manages to capture him and as revenge they tie him upside down the tree and start painting away.
 
In episode 7, Chidori meets her senpai Fuwa as she ponders if Sagara is able to adapt to normal school life. Fuwa invites Chidori to an amusement park this coming Sunday. I’m not sure whether it’s out of jealousy or trying to protect Chidori but it seems Sagara and Kyoko decide to go spy on those 2 this coming Sunday. Okay, so I think it’s the latter reason because Sagara thinks Fuwa wants to steal some secret information of their school through Chidori and plans to intercept. But Kyoko warns him about Chidori hating him if he does something rash and so Sagara decides to lie low for now. So far so good until some gangster shows up and is harrassing Chidori and Fuwa. Though Sagara wants to intercept, but Kyoko kept reminding him about that hatred thingy. No choice, Sagara spots the amusement park mascot costume, Bonta, knocks that guy out and ‘steals’ the costume. That park mascot looks like some giant mouse with a green Irish hat. I think.
 
So if you’re wondering how the term Fumoffu came about for this series, it’s because whoever wears the costume can only say the words "Fumo Fumo". Weird. Though Sagara manages to scare the gangsters away, he has caught the attention of the security guards as Sagara tries to avoid being captured by them. Later Chidori and Fuwa are together in a ferris wheel when the latter confesses that he wants Chidori to be his girlfriend. But after seeing that Bonta being chased around, Chidori smiles and declines his offer and tells him that she likes somebody else. Luckily Fuwa’s an understanding guy and accepts her decision. After they both part, Chidori manages to find Bonta and distracts the security guards and has a chat with Bonta. Probably she knows that it’s Sagara behind it but acts as though she doesn’t want to blow his cover. After some heart to heart talk, Chidori leaves. Only thing, the chase begins again when the security guard spots him.
 
Chidori and Kyoko are being chased by gangsters in episode 8 but a guy, Issei Tsubaki, saves them. Though Chidori tries to thank him but Tsubaki is quite rude and scorns her, pissing Chidori off a little. At school, Sagara and Chidori are being called to the student council’s room and have received orders to shut down the school’s karate club. In addition, all the members must leave the dojo as it will be torn down. However, those 3 bald muscular karate club member triplets refuse to do so unless they can beat them. Since Sagara isn’t your chivalrious knight, he’s using sorts of ‘dirty tactics’ and any meams to beat them like using a weapon instead of hand-to-hand combat, luckily to be stopped by Chidori. Though Sagara defeats them, but the karate club president, which is Tsubaki himself appears and tells Sagara that he’ll have to beat him instead. Sagara seems to be losing to Tsubaki when the latter is gonna make his final blow on Sagara. As he put on his glasses, he spots how beautiful Chidori is. Yup, another Mr Magoo here. He doesn’t scorn her anymore too. Because he’s so taken in by Chidori’s beauty and not paying attention, this allows Sagara to land Tsubaki 1 super punch. Though Tsubaki admits that he has lost, he tells Sagara that he’ll fight Sagara again over Chidori. Uh-huh, this guy’s in love now.
 
Yeah, Tsubaki’s really serious in challenging Sagara in episode 9 as he waits and waits and waits. Sagara didn’t turn up. Why? That’s because Sagara found another letter in his shoebox locker and plans on detonating it again! Luckily after that paper fan smack from Chidori prevents him to do so. The next morning, Tsubaki’s mad that Sagara didn’t show up and soon barges in to his class and demands an answer. It seems Sagara has thrown away his challenge letter without reading it. This made Tsubaki really mad and is gonna pound Sagara. But because he isn’t wearing his glasses, he accidentally pounds the school janitor. At the student council room, Hayashimizu tells them that they can’t use Chidori as a bet and tells them to settle it by helping out the recuperating school janitor with his chores. The one who gets accepted by him wins. They both agree. At the school janitor’s place, because those 2 competitive blokes are trying to outdo each other to win his attention, they’re causing more trouble than anything else. But it seems the school janitor’s quite tolerant since he thinks that they’re trying their best to help him.
 
After some lecturing about working together instead of trying to outdo each other, the both of them agrees. Looks like they really could get along well. Then the final blow to the school janitor is when they invite him to eat some fish they cook. He eats the fish, compliments them for their work and asks where did they get the fish from. They told him they caught it from the school’s koi pond. You might guess that the school janitor is slowly losing his cool as he gradually removes his bandages and proceeds to take out a chainsaw and tells those 2 that the fish is some koi that he has taken care of and have grown attached over the years. It’s like his child to him. Uh oh. Before you know it, he cranks up the chainsaw and all hell breaks loose. Yeah, his face is all black and his eyes and smile is giving out that evil shine. He’s gonna slaughter those 2! As the school janitor turns into a monster, in his rage the entire school is damaged as the 2 try to flee from him. I can’t believe Sagara can’t beat this guy with all the guns and bombs. Maybe he’s accustomed to fighting humans not monsters. The next morning, their classmates find not only the school building heavily damaged but Sagara and Tsubaki sprawled in a corner mentioning how nothing had worked on ‘him’. But looks like the school janitor’s back to normal. For now…
 
The gang reads a notice on the bulletin board in episode 10 warning them about some sex offender in the area and has something to do with ‘pony’. Kyoko gets her horrifying experience when she’s walking back alone that evening only to be approached by some guy wearing a horse mask and going "Pony, pony". Some sick fella. Furthermore, he’s got some hairbrush and wire in hand. Though Kyoko tries to run but her assailant manages to catch up with her and we hear her screaming. Next morning, a serious Sagara seems to be telling Chidori about last night incident about Kyoko. Chidori is feeling the chills as her heart sank when Sagara concludes his sentence "He gave her a ponytail". Well, Kyoko seems unhurt except that she now spots some ponytails and because of that wire used, she can’t really change back her hairstyle. Okay… Nothing that serious. Though Sagara has suggested several ways (don’t even wanna think about it) to capture and make that sex offender talk, Chidori suggests going to the police station, in which they did.
 
As Chidori’s telling her case to Yoko, the female police officer there, the latter gets hyped up when Chidori mentions sex offender. Yup, you’ll recognize her as that crazy police officer who crashed the police car while chasing Sagara and Chidori back then. Because of that she’s being demoted to a desk job and is desparately gonna get her previous role back by nabbing this sex offender. Yeah, she’s really obssessed even mapping out the location of the attacks. Thing is, Yoko can’t seem to clearly remember Chidori’s face but clearly remembers Sagara’s and says how she’ll beat the crap out of him if she sees him. Likewise, Sagara’s telling Chidori how he’ll kill her if she notices him. But since Chidori’s here for Kyoko’s revenge, she agrees to cooperate with Yoko by being the bait.
 
That evening, Sagara’s in his Bonta outfit. Looks like it’s permanently his. And it seems he has fitted inside the Bonta suit with lots of those high-tech computerized controls. How can so much thing fit in there? Seems like a lot of space inside. Anyway, he’s keeping watch when Yoko spots him and thinks he’s the sex offender. Soon they both exchange rounds of gunfire. Crazy. Because they’re both engrossed with each other, Chidori notices the real sex offender as he starts chasing her. Sagara and Chidori fires 1 shot at each other which at the right timing, hit the sex offender right in the face. After the sex offender comes to a grinding halt on the ground, Yoko realizes that the real sex offender is the one chasing Chidori and asks who is that Bonta guy. Chidori replies it’s a friend of hers. Chidori soon smacks Sagara because he and the sex offender is conversing in a weird language. Do they understand each other? I mean one is going "Fumo fumo" an the other going "Pony pony". Yoko unmasks the sex offender and asks why he did it. I’m not sure but something about ponytails turn him on and that there are too few women with such these days. Sick guy. Yoko then arrests and takes him away while Chidori in her disbelief mentioning to herself how there’s something very very wrong in all these. Yeah, everything is.
 
Chidori’s telling a ghost story to her friends who’re getting scared in episode 11. She must be a real convincing ghost story teller. Except for Sagara who has never shown any signs of fear (does that meeting with that monster school janitor count as one?) thus they challenge him to go to some supposedly abandoned and haunted hospital. There, one of their classmates, Mizuki spots an old woman looking out of the window, freaks out and decides to chicken out by running away leaving Sagara and Chidori alone. With that Sagara decides to enter the hospital to find the old lady. So your usual horror film elements which may indicate something supernatural like a patient zooming fast around the corner before disappearing, the telephone suddenly rings but Sagara threw a cup at it to make sure it isn’t an explosive, hearing voices of small children coming from upstairs, and a head flying outside the window. It’s so funny to hear Sagara’s response "I’m glad that’s not a bomb". Yeah, because Sagara doesn’t think of all those as ghostly events, this is pissing off Chidori in a way, though she’s scared of it all. Finally when they encounter a ghost of a young girl soaked in blood, Sagara’s still not scared, prompting Chidori asking the ghost to do something scary. You know what? The ghost smiled. *Smack* With that, Chidori is really mad now as she heads across the room to the ghost when the floor suddenly collapses.
 
Though Chidori comes to and is still a little dizzy, to find Sagara panicking because there’s blood all over the place. Upon checking, to their relief it’s just paint. Then it is revealed that the whole ghost thing was just an act put up by 2 kids to protect some guy called Gen. So they just scare people away because they’re always picking on Gen. When Chidori asks about the old woman, the kids say they never used any old woman in their tricks, causing Chidori to freak out before passing out again. Soon the 2 kids too panic when they realize it and rushes out of the hospital. But that old woman’s a real person as she turns out to be Gen’s mom. So it’s all their imagination. Chidori open her eyes to find herself riding as a pillion while Sagara pedals. She asks if he was worried about her back then, he gave a soft one word answer "Yes". Though Chidori didn’t hear it, but I think she’s happy to know that he cares for her as she keeps pushing him for an answer, nearly throwing Sagara off course.
 
Hayashimizu orders Chidori and Sagara to help the school’s rugby team with the former their manager and the latter the additional rugby player in episode 12. Why? Since the school’s rugby team is so weak (yeah, all the players are sissies as well), the principal decides to disband it. But because of the rugby club’s captain pleading, he decides to give them 1 more chance but on 1 condition. That they have to beat a strong rugby school club, Garasuyama High. We see how ‘soft’ those Jidai players are during their usual practice (even Chidori thinks they’re goners and no hopers at this rate) and they got into a mass brawl with Garasuyama players at some restaurant. Those tough and hardened Garasuyama players of course are mocking them all the way. With that, Sagara promises to tone up the Jidai rugby team, his style of course.
 
Uh-huh. It’s like some military boot camp training as we see them going through harsh training and Sagara giving them ‘words of encouragement’. Not really sure whether they’re insults or copyrighted words because there’re a lot of censored beeps coming out from Sagara’s mouth in nearly every sentence. But so darn funny. You could say the training paid off in a way. Match day arrives and because Sagara isn’t knowledgeable about rugby rules, he kicks the opposing team’s rugby captain’s face causing the latter to be out cold while Sagara is out himself for foul play. With that, the other Jidai rugby members gets motivated and encouraged by Sagara’s ‘sacrifice’, and starts playing a violent game. Yeah, all the Jidai members have turned into tough cookie monsters and beasts so much so the Garasuyama side are terrified as the tables are now turned. The brutal, aggressive, sadistic, one-sided match ended up with Jidai winning and Garasuyama ended up more than their pride being hurt as they completely crushed the latter with a huge winning margin scoreline. I wonder if you could really call that a game.
 
If you’re wondering if that white haired girl Teletha Testarossa is gonna make her appearance, she does now in episode 13. She must be a real genius to have such a high military position at that age, furthermore being dubbed ‘The Goddess’. Under the suggestion of Commander Mardukas, Teletha agrees to take a vacation as she decides to go visit Sagara’s high school in Japan. Though Mardukas is reluctant but Teletha says that he must keep his promise to support her decision no matter what. Next time be careful with what you say and agree. At Jidai High, Kyoko’s rushing in and telling how a pervert has appeared in the school grounds. Sagara and Chidori dispatches to the scene to find a strange man standing there. Because his back his facing them, Sagara quickly throws him over only to realize to his horror that it is his commanding superior Mardukas. Yeah, it seems Sagara is quite fearful of this guy, obeying and answering every single orders military style. We hear that Mardukas accidentally walked into a girl’s locker room and was unable to explain himself. And he tells Sagara that he’s here visiting a college professor with his ‘daughter’ who’s on a 2 week transfer student as they go inspect the school grounds.
 
Finally the leave for Sagara’s hose and Mardukas isn’t impress with the cleanliness as he orders Sagara to quickly clean up the place. No choice, Sagara has to burn the midnight oil, which concerns Chidori a little. The next morning and a squeaky clean house, a tired Sagara hears his door bell ring and to his surprise finds a genki Teletha at his doorstep. With that, Mardukas tells Sagara to keep a close watch on her and that if he ever attemps anything perverted, he’ll not hesitate to rip him apart. Yeah, Sagara’s really sweating. Before Mardukas leaves, he also tells Sagara that Melissa Mao will soon arrive to help out. Soon Teletha is introduced to Sagara’s class as a transfer student and everybody is impressed with her. Except Chidori of course. Yeah, she’s wondering what on Earth is going on. By the look of things, it may indicate that they’re both rivals for Sagara’s attention, if you know what I mean. Chidori offers to ‘teach her stuffs while Teletha excitedly accepts to learn her lessons. Lessons in love that is. And Sagara’s feeling the heat because he has got to guard both of them now. As if 1 woman isn’t problematic enough. Sorry. I didn’t mean to be insulting.
 
It’s a swimming period for the class everyone gets into their school swimsuits except for Teletha who gets into a tight fitting outfit because of the advice she got from that perverted Kurz Weber. The funny part is when Teletha dives in, everybody’s waiting for her to resurface. Time passes… She’s not resurfacing and they think she may have drowned. With Sagara panicking and fearing the worse, he rushes and dives in like a rock! With his full clothes on! We see Teletha resurfacing at the end of the other side of the pool. She can hold her breath so long. After dragging Sagara out, Teletha thinks about giving him a CPR only to be intercepted by Chidori. Probably Teletha has that intention of kissing him. The 2 ladies started arguing when Sagara comes to. Kyoko asks him what is his relation with Teletha. After some deep thoughts, Sagara says due to some circumstances he cannot give details about their relationship as it is way ‘beyond your imagination’. All the girls get excited and misinterprets it as a romantic forbidden love. See, wrong choice of words. A jealous Chidori then stomps away. Hehe. Even Kyoko quipped that Chidori’s got a rival now.
 
Later, Sagara thought he’s gonna get some relief when Melissa arrives but finds out due to some storm, she is unable to come. Probably it’s all part of her plan to leave them alone. Sagara pleads for her not to abandon her comrade but it fell on deaf ears. Sagara turns to Chidori for help by asking to stay over but Chidori refuses as she say it’ll get in the way of their ‘special relationship’. With no where left to turn, Sagara passes out. Probably the stress here is too tremendous compared to the battlefield. In the end, Chidori decides to stay at Sagara’s place to help out as the latter’s sick in bed. But with 2 ladies trying to outdo and loggerheads with each other, things could only get worse as they spill a bowl of rice on his face. Deja vu isn’t it? Remeber that school janitor’s case?
 
In order to spend her last days with them, Teletha suggests to visit a hot spring inn as their school vacation in episode 14. Melissa and Kurz seems to join in too. This episode may be a little ecchi but don’t worry. All the necessary parts are strategically covered and blocked. Also that perverted Kurz wants to take a peek at the girls at the hot spring and manages to recruit Sagara’s male buddies, Ono D and Shinji. Of course, if Sagara’s oblivious to love, then this ecchi stuff is out of the question for him as he decides to sit this one out. At the hot spring, Kurz and his newly recruits are taking action only to be foiled by that male-female wall barrier defence and finding out that there’s some high sensory laser device which shoots at anyone trying to take a peek around the corner. You’ll also see Chidori and Teletha getting along quite well. Okay, maybe not so. That’s because there’s 1 night where Teletha decides to sneak and sleep with Sagara but unfortunately (or fortunately), Chidori knew this would happen and have handcuffed her hand with Teletha’s. How disappointing.
 
After exhausting all means, Kurz decides to make a mad dash run at a certain time at night from a distance (at the woods?). It seems the whole forest area has that laser beam too! Though not clearly mentioned, but I think Sagara set them up because he’s looking back at Kurz and co suspiciously when they decided to do that ecchi thing. So a lot of blasting as the trio make a run for the girl’s section. A lot of near misses but in the end, it got Wurz and Ono D. Shinji’s thinking of giving up but after some last words of encouragement (yeah, something about burning the view to your eyes), Shinji gets all fired up and wow! Such transformation. He manages to destroy and dodge all the lasers like as though he’s a pro. It’s all so bloody exaggerating but funny. Finally in 1 last blow, the explosion propels Shinji into the girl’s section area. But he got his face in Sagara’s crotch! Why is Sagara there? He tells him that the men and women’s bathing place switch places after 10pm. What a bummer. Kurz must be really disappointed on the way back. Teletha’s final day at school sees her getting a little emotional as her classmates gave her a heartfelt farewell. With that, Teletha’s back resuming her duty and vows to protect those good people.
 
In episode 15, Ren along with Sagara and Chidori are walking home when they witness some clash between 2 rival gangsters. We find out that 1 of the gang is supposed to be under Ren’s family, the Mikihara. The other gang, Ryujinkai manages to defeat the Mikihara gang and took away all their money. Ren recognizes them and comes in to help but the gang leader, Shibata recognizes Chidori. Remember the part in the amusement park where Chidori’s saved by Sagara in a Bonta outfit? Yup, it’s this guy. Chidori threatens to call Bonta if he’s gonna cause any more trouble. Soon Shibata realizes that she’s Ren’s friend and apologizes. Back at Ren’s home, Shibata suggests to their boss about hiring a bodyguard when Chidori comes in with Sagara in a Bonta suit. Uh-huh. Chidori’s playing interpreter too. The boss thinks all this is a big lame joke and sticks his sword at Shibata. Well, Shibata did loose to that Bonta, right? With that, Sagara runs up to the boss and quickly throws him over. With that, the boss changes his perception and allows him to train his henchmen. It’s so funny to see the gangsters doing their laps around town, following Bonta as passerbys stare the weirdness of it all. Meanwhile the Ryujinkai plans on kidnapping Ren to force the Mikihara group off their turf.
 
The next day while Sagara is resuming training with his ‘students’, he receives a message that Chidori and Ren have been kidnapped by Ryujinkai. Sagara is analyzing that these gangsters are too weak to face their enemies now as they need more training. But Sagara has a plan to make them all strong. That night as Sagara and the Mikihara henchmen arrive to raid the Ryujinkai’s building, they’re all dressed in Bonta suits! Did he made them overnight? I mean each Bonta suit is equipped with the latest technology and for combat purposes. I think it’s more of the Ryujinkai in shock to see oversized rats invading them rather than their combat skills which contributed to the Ryujinkai’s defeat. As the Bontas storm in SWAT style, Sagara manages to arrive in the room where Ren and Chidori are being held hostage. Ryujinkai boss threatens to shoot Chidori but the latter bit his hand allowing Sagara to fire a rubber bullet at his head, knocking him out. So how effective is this Bonta suits? Why the next day over the tv news, we see several police members foiling a drug smuggling operation wearing Bonta suits. Everybody should have one. Looking cute and dangerous.
 
In episode 16, due to the lack of rooms in Jidai school, everyone is using everyone’s room for their club activities. It’s really havoc and out of place. Hayashimizu has to find a solution and notices that the social science club has only 2 members. They are willing to give up their club room but on 1 condition. To decide whose club their room should go to, they have to participate in an experiment and tells them all to gather at the park. Once everyone gathers, he tells them all that the experiment is about flirting and each club must send 3 members and get as many opposite gender back at this spot before 4pm. The one with the most numbers wins. Well it seems Sagara has joined the photography club and is being mocked by other clubs about his unattractive attire. Soon they make a bet that if Sagara doesn’t get at least 1 girl, he’ll have to swim in the lake naked. Sagara agrees. And the experiment soon starts.
 
So you could see all those ‘losers’ trying to ask girls to come meet at the place at 4pm. I guess Tsubaki’s pretty good looking too after saving a few ladies from some menacing gangster. Meanwhile, Chidori’s walking around with the social science club member who is observing ‘juicy data’ and spots one of Sagara’s members luring some elderly lady into the alley. As she follows, to her horror Chidori finds out that Sagara is actually ‘hunting’ women. Once that woman gets into a certain spot, a cage will sprung down to capture her. And he’s already got 7 infuriated ladies behind the bars. An enraged Chidori smacks Sagara and tells him to release all of them, which he did. Chidori tries to give some advice on flirting with words, but I guess those words seem alien to him as Chidori’s words are played really fast forward! Can’t here a single thing. Even the subs also zoomed pass by. Sagara tries this approach out but fails because his lines are all military lines. I’m not sure what this part is all about as an old woman comes up to Sagara looking for a gift for her grandson. Sagara gives her a model tank, which she accepted and thanked him very much before waving goodbye as Chidori watches from a distance.
 
Time’s up as everyone gathers back at the spot. Who won? Tsubaki’s karate club. Since Sagara ended up with no woman, he has to fulfill his end of the bargain. Before he could take off his top, a gorgeous looking lady in a kimono comes up to him. She’s telling him how he promised her dinner and she’s quite looking forward to it as they both walk away arm in arm. Everybody must be in real shock and their jaws open wide. Of course Sagara’s blushing and doesn’t know what’s going on. After some distance from the crowd, Sagara asks who she is when that lady bursts into laughter and he soon realizes her as Chidori. Must be the laughter that gave her away. Plus, I find Chidori looking quite pretty in that. Sagara agrees too as he compliments her how beautiful she looked. But that doesn’t mean he has fallen for her, right?
 
Episode 17 has got to be the ultimate hilarious unfortunate event ever in this series. It all began when Sagara brought some dangerous bacteria container to class and Ono D accidentally opened it. Why? That’s because Ono D had eaten some very spicy bread and the spiciness has got to him. Naturally, one would quickly take the nearest liquid (or anything that resembles one) to quench himself from the spiciness. And tadah… the container with an unknown bacteria has been opened. Sagara realizes what has happened and immediately took preventive measures by sealing his whole classroom off. Even those people not from his class like Tsubaki is caught in it. Sagara’s reason for doing this is because he tells them all that the bacteria spreads through air and that everyone in the class has been infected. Everybody starts to panic. I mean who wouldn’t. They’re all still so young and have yet to experience much of life’s beauty’s ;). It’s quite funny to see everybody going to pound on Sagara. Yeah, that slow motion mirage-like view accompanied with those angry mob looks. Hehehe. Everybody’s breaking down but luckily they’ve got a calm and reasonable Chidori to clam things down. She’s giving them some motivational speech and words of encouragement. With that, everybody accepts their fate and tries to look on the positive side.
 
That is, until Sagara says that he has a vaccine but only enough for 1 person. You could see everybody slowly moving away from each other and that aura of ‘unfriendliness’ and hostility. Hehehe. After all what Chidori has done, everybody’s gone berserk again and chaos ensues as they try to grab the vaccine. Everything went down the drain just like that. Chidori manages to restore order again when she tells them a draw would only fairly decide who gets the vaccine. So they need to get a paper stating ‘Atari’ (meaning a win). As the students pull out the paper one by one, we see a yet so close yet so far situation because most of the other papers have the starting words ‘Ata~’ on it like ‘Atatakai’ (warm) and one even ‘Atatatatatatatatatatatata’! Hahaha. Those who didn’t get it are depressed about their impending doom. While Mizuki doesn’t want to die before she gets a boyfriend, she suddenly decides to have Tsubaki as hers, much to his dismay. Yeah, she’s quite clingy to him. She’s all over him. With a handful of them haven’t taken the draw yet, finally it’s Sagara’s turn. Um… He got the winning ticket. With that, everybody again slowly is breaking down and saying how they could accept their deaths but Sagara getting the vaccine is most unacceptable as chaos once again erupts. During the ‘bashing’, the vaccine container broke. Things just couldn’t get worse, could it?
 
Because of the commotion, the next door teacher forcefully opens the classroom door and yells what is going on. With that, since everybody knew the bacteria spreads by air, they don’t care anymore as they all rush out. Tsubaki tries to attack Sagara but the latter knocks him out with a rubber bullet while Ren went to spend her last moments drinking tea in the student council room. I think Ren does like Hayashimizu and vice versa because when the latter walks in and Ren says she has to leave him, Hayashimizu responds "I can’t leave you". Meanwhile Sagara quickly takes Chidori to the infirmary and tells her to strip naked. Chidori thinks he wants to sleep with her but actually Sagara may have guessed how the bacteria works. At the same time, Kyoko and Ono D are chatting outside and the latter’s in some discomfort. Do these 2 have feelings for each other? Well, it seems Ono D tried to confess but he stopped short when he suddenly feels much better and no more in pain. Soon, his clothes start to disintegrate followed by Kyoko’s as she’s wondering what’s going on in embarrassment. Back at the student council, Ren’s clothes too has been disintegrated by Hayashimizu gives her his coat to cover up.
 
We then hear Sagara over the phone with the person supposedly send him the container. I don’t really understand what it’s all about except that it isn’t a dangerous bacteria but an experiment accident to break down petroleum turns out to break down nylon and clothing fabric instead with human body temperature. Thus, it’s called the Full Monty Bacteria. Good news is that the bacteria dies out in 2 hours and nobody’s going to die. Though everyone may be relieved, but Sagara knows the implication about his own. Yeah, he’s sweating. He doubts he’ll even live much longer. We can see all those students (and even that school janitor with his chainsaw!) with that evil shine in their eyes as they chase after Sagara. Well, we don’t get to see it because as the end credits roll, it’s just a pitch black background but you could hear the pandemonium of a really angry mob. The final picture shows Sagara being cornered against a wall and requesting for backup and we see those students holding various dangerous weapons. Is this the end of Sagara? Maybe for this season. Perhaps that’s why he didn’t go back to school in the next season. Just kidding. Only speculating.
 
Overall, I kinda like all the hilarious any funny stuffs especially Sagara himself when he does all those analytical reasonings and actions based on his military style background. However, with all the humour and comedy, it still isn’t enough to make me feel like watching the other seasons in this series. Probably I won’t feel at a lost because like I said, this season can stand alone by itself.
 
In each episode, there are tons and tons of trivias and parodies for you to spot. For a blur case like me, I can’t remember if I actually spot one. Like that episode where Sagara coaches the weak Jidai rugby club players. The dialogue from Sagara are actually lines from the movive Full Metal Jacket. Or even that crazy police woman Yoko, which is actually a spoof of the police anime Taiho Shichauzo (You’re Under Arrest).
 
Which comedy anime doesn’t have its characters in chibi form. Okay, maybe most of them have. For this one, it’s right at the end credits as you could see the chibi characters walking in line like a marching parade. And if you happen to notice the background setting in the early episodes will be morning and spring and as the series progresses, its setting will change to evening and autumn. By the way, I happen to notice that all the songs in the Full Metal Panic series are sung by the same person, Mikuni Shimokawa, that is. So this Fumoffu is no exception either.
 
With the drawing, art, animation and voice acting all pretty consistent, don’t ever try to attempt any antics that Sagara does. It is definitely dangerous. Even if you’re from a uniformed background, I’m sure there are other ways to solve any hostility. On second thought, maybe it’s best to fight fire with fire. And with people like Sagara around, I’m sure we can all ‘rest in peace’. Hehehe. Doesn’t that sound ambiguous? Causing more havoc and mayhem instead of quelling the threat and sometimes making a mountain out of a mole hill. All this seems pretty familiar in the real world, doesn’t it?

Though I’m not really a fan of the magical girl genre, something inside me kept telling me to have a try for the series Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha. And after watching so many kinds of anime, I decided to go with my gut feeling. So okay, it didn’t turn out that bad as expected but it didn’t change my liking on the magical girl genre.
 
I should be counting my lucky stars because I really like the opening theme song, Innocent Starter, which is sung by Nana Mizuki. I was really taken into it and instantly fell in love with it. Maybe most people would say that it’s just another ordinary song, but to me, I find it quite catchy, the tune of the song. Talk about starting things off on the right note. With that, I decided to stay and try out watching the series.
 
Another reason being is that, since this series is shown on the local television, there has been a preview of it written earlier on. Because most of the magical girl genres are targeted for younger audiences and especially little girls, this review say that due to the complexity of the magic system, the show would appeal to older audiences as well. Maybe it’s because I’m such a blur case or what that I didn’t realize the intensity of the magic usage system. So after the series has ended, I decided to look up a little and do a little research by paying a visit to Wikipedia. And oh my goodness!!! There are tons and tons of terminologies of whatever spells and devices. Some I might never even heard of or recall ever being used in the series. Like I said, maybe I was a blur head or maybe those additional hyped up stuffs are used in later sequels. Yup, there’s a sequel to this series alright.
 
At first I thought this was a 26 episode series. Why? Because normally and usually I have noticed and ASS-U-ME-D that when the local tv series decides to air a Japanese anime, they’ll usually take a 26 episode one. Anything less than that and it’ll be too short and they might have to repeat the show in the same slot again or churn out more money to buy other shows to replace this one. Hehehe. Not until when I was watching somewhere near the end, it hit me that "Hey, how come the plot feels like it’s gonna end already?". In addition, I happen to notice over the internet that the subs for the series has only 13 episodes. I was thinking did they dropped subbing this show? To satisfy my curiosity (or rather blurness) I did a little research again and to my shock and surprise, it has only 13 episodes. Yes, 13 episodes! Now I really do look like a fool. So next time if you want to ASS-U-ME, don’t. The ASS is on me this time. *face looking towards the ground and blushing*.
 
The storyline is basically like this. We’ve got ourselves a cute elementary school goer named Nanoha Takamichi who seems to have the perfect life. Her kind and caring parents own some sort of a coffee shop and her elder brother and sister are equally caring and nice to her as well. But since they’re busy doing their stuff sometimes, Nanaoha feels left out at times. But she’s all used to that. And as any girl at their age would have, best friends of course. Two to be exact for Nanoha, Alisa Bannings and Suzuka Tsukimura. Doing things together, having fun together. Isn’t life a bliss?
 
But all that is about to change for Nanoha as we see in episode 1 a young archaelogist boy named Yuuno Scrya, is engaged in some battle with some monster. Though both at the end of their duel are injured, the monster retreats and Yuuno… he turned himself into a ferret. I don’t remember why but it seems something like to save his powers and heal himself. Something like that. So Nanoha along with Alisa and Suzuka are heading off to school when Alisa suggests to take a shortcut through the woods. Nanoha hears some strange voice calling for her but it seems only Nanoha herself can hear it. Soon she spots an injured ferret and in no time, the 3 friends took it to the vet for treatment.
 
Because they can’t get that cute ferret out of their minds, they’re contemplating of what to do with it during class. You should pay attention to your teacher… Later that night, Nanoha’s having a strange dream about the ferret being in danger. Yup, some black dustball monster is gonna attack it at the vet. And oddly enough, Nanoha decides to head over to the vet only to find a huge scary monster. What’s even scarier is that the ferret can talk! Well, might as well explain a few things since Nanoha now knows it can speak, like who he is and he’s not from this world bla bla bla.
 
Soon Yuuno (let’s call him this from now on. It’s better and more ‘respect’) gives Nanoha that red round jewel, called Raging Heart, the jewel that he used to fight the monster earlier in the day. Yuuno can’t used it because he has failed once and is injured. I guess it’s no time to think whether you wanna be a full time/part time magical girl and save the world because the monster aint gonna wait around for you to finish making your decision. With that, Nanoha takes the Raging Heart in her hand and with some uttering of some few words and tadah… a henshin (transformation) occurs.
 
So it might not be a lengthy transformation but I figure that since it’s a magical genre, this transformation of showing our young heroine change into her super costume to fight evil is a must. But there is 1 thing that I kinda notice about the costume. Why, the skirt is longer than knee length! No, I’m NOT disappointed. That’s because, in fact, all the magical girl genres that I’ve seen, the heroine’s skirt is so short! Would you believe me, from Sailor Moon to Card Captor Sakura, it’s like wearing a loose mini-skirt. Which brings me to another point. I kinda noticed that Nanoha’s magical girl outfit and her school uniform is quite close to each other in design. Yeah, which means, her school uniform’s skirt length too is longer than knee length. Something refreshing and different.
 
After the transformation, Raging Heart becomes some sort of a magical staff-cum-wand (I later find out that such staff is called Intelligent Devices. Hmmm…) that as usual shoots magic projections, project magic barriers and such. Oh yeah, now she can fly too. Okay, not just fly but some wing like projection will appear at her ankles to indicate that she can soar to the skies. I find it kinda different because the voice of the Raging Heart is to be of a computerized female voice and it speaks in English. And I found out that a non-Japanese person lends her voice to this. Yeah, so no squeaky high pitched typical Japanese anime girly voice for this Intelligent Device. In addition, whenever Raging Heart activates a spell or barrier, there’ll be some English words appearing on the red ball but I can’t make it out though it’s exactly what Raging Heart says because the font style is too ‘fancy’.
 
Nanoha’s battle with that scary monster continues at the start of episode 2. It seems that Nanoha has a natural talent for being a magical girl, impressing Yuuno in a way. Though I’m not sure if Nanoha watches magical girl series or not. Nanoha’s a fast learner and can even pull off spells which are way beyond Yuuno’s expectations. And as expected, she defeats the monster and a jewel appears from it. So we hear some explanations from Yuuno that those jewels are known as Jewel Seeds and he’s trying to collect all 21 of them scattered in this world. Previously on some archaelogy expedition, he somehow lost them on an unfortunate disaster so he’s trying to recover them all as soon as possible. Why? Because the Jewel Seeds are very very powerful source of power and by falling into the wrong hands, you know what this means, right? World domination, cultural abomination. You get the picture. With that, Nanoha agrees to help Yuuno recover them all.
 
Since Yuuno has to be with Nanoha, I guess passing off as her pet ferret would make a great cover. Well, at least everyone allows it so long as Nanoha takes care of it. Plus it would be really weird if they find out that Yuuno the ferret can talk. So how do they communicate? Besides being some magical wand, Raging Heart too becomes some sort of a telepathic tool for Nanoha and Yuuno to communicate anytime anywhere and in total privacy. Now if there’s a phone technology like this today.
 
Remember how Nanoha has a talent of being a magical girl. Yeah, it takes a step further. Why now she can even sense the presence of a near by Jewel Seed. While on her way back from school, Nanoha detects a Jewel Seed who seemed to have turned some Rotweller into a scary looking dog-like beast. So another round of transformation, another round of magic spells before they subdued the monster and collects the Jewel Seed. Yay. Now that’s 2 out of 21.
 
Episode 3 starts off with Nanoha doing another round of Jewel Seeds collection. Yup, she has already 5 of them by now. She’s doing a pretty good job. So while most of this episodes see how everyone else gets accquainted with a cute Yuuno, Nanoha and her pals watches their school football team in play because Nanoha’s dad their coach, we see that one of the football player kid giving his sweetheart a Jewel Seed unknowingly the chaos he might wreck later on. But when she touches the ornament, a bright light suddenly shines and woah! That’s a pretty large tree. Did those 2 lovebirds turned into a tree?
 
Nanoha with her Jewel Seed sense tingling rushes outside her home to see the large tree engulfing the city with its heavy roots. Don’t worry, Nanoha’s here to save the day as she transforms to another magical girl and goes off to find the Jewel Seed. With her ever amazing growing skills which keeps impressing Yuuno each time, she manages to do the impossible (something like sealing the Jewel Seed from a far distance) and bring order back to the world. So when those lovebirds come too, they think it’s all just a dream and walks away. Perhaps it’s better this way. With that all the tree roots disappear but not without leaving some damage to the concrete and road behind. Yuuno explains that when a Jewel Seed comes into contact with a human or living thing, a super power will be unleashed. So is Nanoha immune to it because she’s the magical girl? Or maybe Nanoha didn’t really touch it. But don’t worry, it won’t be each episode Nanoha gets to find a Jewel Seed episode. That would be plain boring, wouldn’t it?
 
It may seem that episode 4 is one of those filler episodes. That’s because, Alisa, Nanoha and her brother gets invited to Suzuka’s super rich and big mansion. Yeah, Nanoha’s brother has a thing for Suzuka’s older sister, Shinobu. Though it isn’t obvious, but you could pretty much guess it’s like that. Is the theme for Suzuka’s household purple? I mean, not only their hair colour is purple but the maids there too are dressed in purple. And Yuuno’s having a hard time trying to stay away from Suzuka’s pet cat.
 
Besides all the fun and enjoyment that our 3 little girl have, we see the appearance of yet another magical girl. A sad and gloomy looking girl called Fate Testarossa (I heard something like testosterone at first) at first may look like the villain of the series as she took is looking for the Jewel Seeds. Nanoha gets to meet her when she and Yuuno sense yet another Jewel Seed somewhere in the huge gardens. To their surprise, they find a giant cat. So it’s not that scary looking as the previous monsters they battled. That’s when Nanoha meets Fate (pun intended). Nanoha notices how Fate doesn’t really care about the cat’s well-being as she’s just relentlessly attacking the cat just to get the Jewel Seed. With that Nanoha transforms and a short battle ensued with her new found rival. Fate’s Intelligent Device, Bardische (a computerized male voice over, who’s also a non-Japanese), to has its superb and cool magical powers as Nanoha lost to Fate and gets injured in the process.
 
Which means, Fate gets the Jewel Seed. And soon after which, Fate leaves. Meanwhile, Nanoha is being treated back in Suzuka’s house and Nanoha gives the excuse that she may have just tripped in the woods. Well, at least they believed her. Who would if she said "I battled another magical girl". Yeah, they’ll say you’ve watched too many animes. Then back in some high rise building in the city, we see Fate, petting her wolf-dog pet, Arf, and ponders about her new rival. We also find out that Fate’s doing it because of her beloved mother. And she’s bloody determined not to loose.
 
I supposed the the fun and enjoyment continues in episode 5 because Nanoha and the gang vists the hot spring. Since they’re little girls, don’t worry about having to see big bouncy boobs. AND I’M NOT A PERVERT! And because everybody sees Yuuno as a ferret, Yuuno’s in a pinch because he has to reluctantly watch our little ladies undress themselves. Luckily he isn’t a pervert. Just close your eyes real tight.
 
But the 3 girls bumped into a suspicious looking woman at the hot spring. Yeah, she has a jewel-like thingy on her forehead. What’s even more surprising is that she’s telepathically telling Nanoha and Yuuno to stay out of other’s business. Looks like she’s one of Fate’s subordinates. But in front of the other 2 friends, she just play dumb and innocent. You’ll find out she’s actually Arf in her human form and she’s telepathically conveying her findings to Fate, who herself seems to have detected another Jewel Seed.
 
As expected, Nanoha and Yuuno too sensed a piece of the Jewel Seed and rushes down to some stream near a bridge. Okay, so Fate’s there too. Another round of battle for tiny tiny piece of jewel. With their Intelligent Devices mentioning some whatever magic moves or special power thingy, it seems Nanoha may have the upper hand that is, until Fate sticks her Bardische at Nanoha’s throat. No choice, Nanoha has to give up the Jewel Seed. With that, Fate spares her life and warns her not to butt in again or else before leaving with Arf. Is Nanoha on a losing streak? Yeah, she’s gonna need all the vacation she can get.
 
Because of the recent events, Nanoha is down in the dumps in episode 6. Lots of spacing out here and there so much so, her pals think that something is wrong with her. Nanoha’s not the kind of girl who would go telling people that she needs help so she keeps to herself. Besides, could anybody help solve a problem which involves magical girls? Not even Superman could. So it’s best to fight fire with fire. And because Nanoha’s been acting strangely, Alisa suspects Nanoha may be hiding something and soon both of them get into an argument. But luckily, Suzuka’s there to stop them. Unfortunately, their friendship is now on the rocks.
 
But Nanoha has to put her spacing out and personal problems on hold. That’s because Fate and Arf are up to their tricks again. They’re trying to activate the Jewel Seed with their magic. Both sides detected the presence of each other as they try to quickly seal the Jewel Seed. Such great timing that both their magic hit the Jewel Seed at the same time. While Nanoha is spacing out about her friendship thingy, Fate is on full speed to recover it. It seems Nanoha values frienship very much and wants to know more about Fate as Nanoha explains her reason for wanting the Jewel Seeds and asks Fate the same. But their conversation is rudely being interrupted by Arf. With that, the 2 girls now race with each other to retrieve the Jewel Seed. But their Intelligent Devices clashed at the same time resulting in some super bright power flash of light which starts to crack both their Intelligent Devices. Now that’s high power impact.
 
So in episode 7, Fate tries to retrieve to Jewel Seed herself but is too powerful as she collapses. A worried Arf then quickly whisks her away as Nanoha and Yuuno could only watch. Back at Nanoha’s home, she’s being doing some thinking and even has a little chat with her sister.
 
Meanwhile at Fate’s place, though Fate has only garnered 4 Jewel Seeds, she decides to go meet her mom, even Arf doesn’t have a good feeling about it. Then this is the part which shocked me. We see Fate being tied up and getting whipped mercilessly by her evil looking mom, Precia! What the?! That $#(*&%$ b*tch!!! She’s not happy that Fate has failed her and has only got 4 Jewel Seeds. Well if you want a job done, you better do it yourself, right? And you send your poor little daughter out into the field and she did her best and you’re being this grateful? Why you #(*$#(*&$(*#@!!! I felt really pity for Fate who has to endure all that and she didn’t even fight back! Perhaps she’s too weak. And poor Arf could do nothing but wish for Precia to stop as she’s covering her ears to that intolerable cacophony. #@&*&#@*!!! Well, to show her ‘gratefulness’, Precia decides to give Fate another chance to collect the remaining Jewel Seeds and of course that warning not to screw up again or else. Yeah, go screw yourself. Fate has got to be every mother’s dream daughter because she’s still looking at the positive things of her mom after all that pain. I don’t think I could go through all that.
 
So Fate goes out for another round in search of the Jewel Seeds. As expected, a Jewel Seed possessed some tree and turned it into a frightening one. Reminds of you of Halloween. Yeah, Nanoha’s there too. Though they manage to subdue the monster tree, It’s like the same thing, they’re gonna have that high impact clash again when at the same time, the Time Space Bureau Administration decides to send one of their official, a kid named Chrono to halt the fight between the 2. Okay… so now we have some people in some space ship called Asura who keeps order and justice throughout the dimensions. Uh-huh. Led by Chrono’s mom, Lindy, who’s the commander of the Asura and a seemingly genki young intelligence officer, Amy, among the crew.

 
Chrono manages to arrive in time and stop them before the 2 ladies turn each other into magical girl meat kebab. Just kidding. Because Arf wants to protect her master, she quickly whisks Fate and disappears away, leaving Nanoha and Chrono there. Since Nanoha’s deep into this, I suppose, she has no choice but to follow Chrono back to Asura for some questioning. Perhaps the word interrogation is too much for a little girl.
 
In episode 8, Nanoha goes on board the Asura and finds out more stuffs like the Jewel Seeds are also known as Los Logia. Not only that, Yuuno finally transforms himself back to that human kid. Maybe he’s been too long as a ferret and may be thinking that he’s one now, huh. Yeah, Nanoha’s a little surprised too. Lindy wants to know more about Fate and wants to bring her in for questioning but she seems to be very elusive. Thus, they want Nanoha and Yuuno to help them, which they both agree.
 
So we also see a short flashback of Fate’s past. Well, they both seem to be much happier that time. So what exactly went wrong? But Fate after all that torture still decides to do her mom’s bidding even if Arf protests. But since Arf is Fate’s loyal familiar, I guess she’ll have to go wherever Fate goes. Even if it’s the ends of the Earth. Back at Nanoha, she’s having a talk with her mom and indirectly says she has to leave to settle some problems of her own. I’m not sure, but it seems her mom allows her though she didn’t even specifically say what her problem is because she has her full trust in her daughter and since Nanoha’s a big girl now and can do things on her own. With that, Nanoha gets her blessings from her family members and off she and Yuuno goes on board the Asura. Even back at school, the teacher announces Nanoha won’t be in school for some time to solve some personal matters. I guess everybody cares that much not until you have to be busybody and know what it is. And again, who would believe about the magical girl thing. Furthermore, now it’s got space and time travel keepers.
 
Since there are a few Jewel Seeds left, in episode 9 Fate is desparate to please her @$#*% mom and tries to activate several Jewel Seeds at once though she’s aware that this may cause the Time Space crew to find her location. And on board Asura, Nanoha and Yuuno are having some chat. Don’t worry, there isn’t any real chemistry or romance going on between these 2. Besides, isn’t Nanoha too young for that? They’re just kids. Anyway, they detected Fate hovering across the ocean with several Jewel Seeds.
 
Nanoha and Yuuno are quickly despatched to the scene. So as usual another stormy battle ensues. But this time, Nanoha is trying to reason with Fate and doesn’t want to fight her and even asks to help her find the Jewel Seeds together. Because Fate’s heart is wavering, Precia finally arrives in her island fortress, Garden Of Time and launches an attack on Asura, disabling the ship for the moment. Also one of the bolts strike Fate. Arf’s trying to get the remaining 6 jewels but Chrono appears and intercepts as he gets 3 of them, making Arf mad. Before you know it, Fate and Arf disappears.
 
Poor Fate gets another heartless beating from her &!&*&# Precia in episode 10. Arf can’t take it anymore and decides to go confront Precia. Even though she has the will but Precia’s too powerful for Arf as she disposes her off. Luckily Arf manages to escape in time, but not after sustaining some injuries. What’s this? It seems that Precia seems to be obsessed with some girl called Alicia sleeping in a large tube. Hmm…
 
Arf days may be numbered, that is until Arisa finds it. Yup, Arf’s in her animal form. Because Arisa’s fascinated what kind of animal it is or rather she’s a kind soul, she decides to take in the beast and nurse it. Meanwhile, Nanoha’s briefly back from her whatever expedition, in her eyes of her family and friends, that is. Nanoha hears from Arisa at school about that weird looking animal thing she caught and decides to go pay a visit and have a look after Arisa invites her and Suzuka.
 
We see Arf in some cage at Arisa’s place and of course Nanoha and Yuuno recognizes her. Luckily with that telepathic thing, the trio can converse without freaking out those 2 innocent kids. Arf’s telling how Precia’s the badass woman and using Fate for some whatever experiments. Yeah, the Time Space crew is also listening to Arf’s testimony and they conclude that she may be telling the truth. With that, they’re gonna arrest Precia, seeing that earlier attack on Asura is enough for an arrest warrant.. Um… I don’t remember, but it seems Lindy is impersonating as somebody and making some things as she gets to know the Takamichi household. Some cover up? And since everybody’s there so friendly, I guess they don’t suspect anything.
 
In a way you could say Arf has joined them but only to get Fate back. So after Nanoha makes peace with her friends and some bonding with her family, Nanoha sends a challenge to Fate for their final battle and this time they’ll put all the Jewel Seeds they have on the line, though Nanoha’s real intention is to save Fate as well. Thus, Nanoha and Fate finally meets and prepares to fight. Though Arf’s concern and tells Fate not to follow that mad woman’s orders anymore, Fate still remains loyal to the fact that she’s still her daughter. Aww… Poor girl.
 
Episode 11 is partly a flashback episode as we find out more about Precia and Fate’s background. While Nanoha and Fate engaged in an aerial magical battle over the Jewel Seeds at stake, but it is Nanoha that ultimately wins. Nanoha still forgives Fate (whether or not she’s aware of what she’s done) when Precia arrives and gives Fate another of those lightning blasts. Has she had enough of that already? Bardische breaks and Fate’s Jewel Seeds are being absorbed by Precia. Precia’s disgusted that the ‘useless’ Fate is being with Nanoha. Who’s the useless one. But it’s the moment the Time Space crew have been waiting for, for Precia to show herself so that they won’t have a hard time tracking her down and nab her. While Nanoha brings Fate back to Asura, the other Time Space crew has invaded Garden Of Life and is asking Precia to give up. Would she give up so easily. Noooo, we must hear some little past lecture first. Plus, Precia’s pretty protective over her Alicia and disposes those officials easily.
 
We learn from a sick Precia (both mind and body. She’s coughing blood too) that the Alicia girl in the tube is actually Precia’s real daughter. So who is Fate? She’s only a clone! Oh, I couldn’t have guessed it. Back then, something went wrong in her magical experiment and Alicia died. So Precia who’s so obsessed with her daughter tried all stuffs, legal or illegal to get her daughter back. Therefore, Precia has created Fate in the image of her daughter Alicia and even gave her memories of her precious child. That explains why Fate has those memories of her when she was young but instead of Precia calling her Fate, her mom keeps calling her Alicia. Since a young Fate was happy back then, she couldn’t care less as long as she could be with her mom. Memories of somebody else. 
 
To land the ultimate killer blow to Fate, Precia tells her that even though Fate has Alicia’s memories and all that, Precia has never loved her once and hated her since the day she was created! Why that #($#(*$&(#*$&(#*&$@#)(@*#)(#*@)(#*)(@*#)(@*#)(@^!!! Anybody who wants to pound this monster to death, please raise their hands! She’s just using Fate to do her bidding until her Alicia revives. This is worse than being a slave. I suppose there’s a limit a child can take. Fate’s in real shock and disbelief. Bloody cruel. As Fate collapses, her mom doesn’t care a single bit. The Time Space crew prepares to take Precia in by force.
 
But getting to Precia isn’t easy as in episode 12, she’s gonna use the power of the 9 Jewel Seeds to bring her to some legendary place of magic called Al Hazard. What’s so good about that place? Well, that place is fabled to have some lost technology which would allow Precia to finish her work to revive Alicia. Though Precia mentions that the 9 Jewel Seeds isn’t enough but since she’s desparate, it’ll just do. And since the Time Space crew isn’t enough, Nanoha, Yuuno and even Arf has to join in and stop her.
 
What about Fate? No doubt she’s till in shock about her new found discovery, she’s doing some self analyzing psychological stuffs and soons get her confidence back. Uh-huh. Just like out of confidence, her Bardische somehow becomes fixed like as though it’s all new. Maybe it’s magic. With that, Fate decides to join Nanoha in battle. Our heroes are having a tough time with Precia’s guards as they’re obstructing them in order to buy her some time to activate and open the gate to Al Hazard.
 
To Nanoha’s surprise, Fate comes in at the right time and saves Nanaho before she becomes toast. With that, the 2 forged a friendship and worked together as a team. Aww… While Nanoha went off in search to stop some power source, Fate once again meets up with her mom and tries to talk to her. I would have guessed that the answer is the same since that woman is quite stubborn. Even in times like this after what Fate has been through, she’s still willing to forgive Precia and wants to give her a second chance. Fate’s such a good girl as she doesn’t care if she’s a clone or what so long it’s that mother-daughter relationship thingy.
 
Because Precia has used the 9 Jewel Seeds to activate the gate to Al Hazard, this causes some instability as the Garden Of Life now is gonna crumble. Precia is still obsessed with her irreplaceable daughter and snubs Fate’s good intentions. With that the ground crumbles, Precia and Alicia fall into some sort of dimensional abyss. Fate could only watch in horror. And since the whole place is gonna crash, everyone has to evacuate quickly. At first I thought Precia actually disappeared into another dimension and would resurface somewhere later in the next season. However, upon further reading I found out that she actually perished during that incident as she’d rather die with her Alicia rather than facing up to her crimes. Uh-huh, Precia’s still laughing like a mad person when she’s falling to her impending doom. Good ridence.
 
The final episode 13 begins where we left off as Precia falls to her doom. Nanoha manages to arrive in time to stop Fate before she too follows her mom. Luckily everybody manages to escape Garden Of Life before it total self destructs and get back onboard the Asura. This final episode felt like tying things up and make it as though it’s a prelude to a sequel. Yup, we see Nanoha and Yuuno getting some whatever reward from Lindy for their cooperation. Then Lindy, Chrono, Nanoha and Yuuno have some discussion over their meal about Al Hazard which is only believed to be a myth and the real existance of it isn’t really proven yet. Something like that. Also, Chrono tells Nanoha that Fate is going to get prosecuted for violating some space dimension rules but he will assure that Fate will get a lighter sentence because Fate initially didn’t know what’s going on the first place and was doing this under the orders of her thank-Lord-she’s-gone-now mom. With that, Nanoha and Yuuno are beamed back down to planet Earth as they said their goodbyes.
 
Back home, Nanoha gets a warm welcome back from her family and friends. Who wouldn’t miss such a cute girl. They’re glad she’s back in 1 piece. On the day before Fate’s trial, Nanoha gets a chance to meet her one last time and talk things over. It’s quite heartwarming to see them together. Looks like Arf and Yuuno are pals too. And if you noticed, this is the first time Fate actually smiled! Fate wonders how are they going to be friends and Nanoha just simply say to call each other’s name. I’m not sure the logic behind that, but I guess it’s a start. After giving each other a warm goodbye hug and promising to keep in touch, they exchange hair ribbons and off Fate and Arf goes. The end credits isn’t anything much as we just see the characters resuming their daily life and going about with their usual business. Looks like Yuuno’s here to stay with Nanoha since he’s got no where to go. Has he given up on his archaelogy thingy?
 
Overall, I guess this whole anime is pretty decent to me, since I’m still haven’t turned into a magical girl crazed fan. To be fair (ahem ahem), this series isn’t that all bad. Okay drawings, art and animation and just a little character development with Nanoha and Fate. Though I think it will appeal to younger and older audiences, boys and girls. Okay, maybe not so the younger audiences in a way because this series touches on child abuse. It may be a little horrifying. Then I found out that the local tv is gonna air the second season Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha A’s. Which means if you count them in total, there are additional 13 episodes which makes the whole Nanoha series into 26 episodes. For me, I’ve had my share of kawaii Nanoha so I won’t be continuing further.
 
Plus, the storyline for the second season seem less appealing to me. It goes something like this. Several months after the first season ended, Fate is currently being tried for her crimes but still keep in touch with Nanoha. Of course new villains who call themselves Velka-Type Knights threatened to steal some magical powers to rule the world by filling up the Book Of Darkness. That kind of thing. Therefore, Nanoha and Fate has to team up once again to defeat the new enemies and save the world, time and space. So more magical spells, more characters, more drama and plot. Sounds interesting? Not if you’re a Nanoha or magical girl hardcore fan.
 
Actually I’ve caught the first episode of Nanoha A’s. The opening and ending theme song this time are way unappealing though the drawing and art are still consistant. Yuuno seems to be onboard Asura along with Fate and Arf. Uh-huh, Nanoha gave the excuse that Yuuno’s real owners have reclaimed him. Raging Heart’s vocabulary seems to have increased and is like able to have a decent interaction with Nanoha. You could see the kanji subtitles when Raging Heart speaks. And even later Nanoha gets her first battle with an aggressive hot headed brat, Vita, who’s another magical girl. Yup, Nanoha’s really taken a beating and seems on the verge of losing when Fate and Yuuno showed up in time. See, you just need to call her name, right? And Fate will be here. Can’t get enough of magical girl battles already and wanting for more?
 
Speaking of which, currently in Japan, they’re showing the third season of the series called, Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS. It’s set 10 years after the end of the second season. Yeah, everybody’s grown up here. So is Nanoha too big to be a magical girl now? Would she be better being a teenage idol? Perhaps not. That’s because Nanoha here now is some super high level mage. And along with Fate and some girl, Hayate, supposedly from the second season, are working at the Time Space Administration Bureau with some trainees. Well since I’ve got a little Nanoha overdose (after 13 episodes of the first season and 1 episode from the second? I must be kidding myself) I won’t be watching this one too as I’ve mentioned I’m dropping the second season as well.
 
Back to the first season. Each of the episodes starts off with Nanoha narrating how she’s just a normal elementary school kid and somehow unexpectedly she turned into a magical girl after receiving Raging Heart. Sometimes it’s like a recap of what has happened so far before she finally says "The story of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha will now begin". Perhaps Nanoha too has a little fascination about beginnings and doesn’t want things to end because in the final narration of the last episode, Nanoha too narrates how this isn’t the end but the beginning of things. I think it’s a typical signal for a sequel. Hehehe.
 
You can probably guess from the title screen whether or not that particular episode is gonna be a serious one or not. Well okay, this is just my observation. If they show the title with the Raging Heart as the background, then it’s most likely to be a less serious one. If not, it’s just one black screen, which is more prominent around the halfway point of the series. Also it seems the title too ends with ‘~na no’. Must be Nanoha’s catch phrase.
 
And probably the whole crew got this contract thingy because not only it’s common sense to retain the voice actor and actresses of the characters for the following season, it seems that the opening and ending themes for all the 3 seasons are sung by the same person as well. With Nana Mizuki doing the opening themes whereas the more highly pitched Yukari Tamura does the endings.
 
Therefore the lesson here is the magic of friendship. A friend in need is a friend indeed. It’s always better to portray a positive outlook even in times of despair and pain. So okay, maybe a strong willed person can do that. And since maybe they’re little girls, they’re still considered innocent in a way. Though I’m through with this series, but "The story of Chua Tek Ming’s anime adventure will continue". And that’s just the beginning of it.

Himitsu No Akko Chan

July 6, 2007

Though I’m not an avid fan of the anime series Secret Of Akko Chan and have stopped watching it ages ago. Somehow, I’m not sure why, I had the urge to ‘check’ the series out after a long hiatus. Meaning, I’m just gonna take a little peek at the show just for the sake of fun. Probably I had too much free time on my hands then.
 
To my surprise, the first thing that caught my surprise is the drawing itself! Why, it’s as though the entire series has undergone a total revamp. What’s so surprising about the drawing, you ask? In my humble and honest opinion (ahem ahem), I find that this time the drawing for the series is totally horrible! Forgive me. Perhaps the word ‘different’ would be a better choice of words.
 
Yes, the characters in the series now looks totally different. Though I can still make out generally who that character is. Especially that big fat bully, Taishou. He now looks even lamer and funnier (in a weird sense, that is)! Yeah, no more that bully look. Okay, so he may still have that bully look in a way, but this time he probably looks more like a clown. Even that Moko girl who looks cute herself seems to spot a brown hair now instead of her previous dark blue. And what’s with her nose too. Uh-huh. I find her uglier here too. Sorry.
 
At first I thought only the main character and heroine Akko didn’t undergo such drastic change and probably the only one who remained the same. But upon closer examination, I find out that her drawing and art detail has become more simpler. Yup, the previous Akko looks better and cuter. Unless you don’t strain your eye to see the difference, I guess it doesn’t really matter.
 
Of course, the other characters are still there. There’s still that baby kid who sits on his cat who looks like a mini tiger. Uh-huh. I don’t remember their names. Besides, how can that baby talk when he’s got a pacifier in his mouth. Don’t tell me he’s a ventriloquist. Just kidding. Then there’s the rest of the gang whose names too I can’t recall. Moko’s little brother, Taishou’s 3 subordinates, some little bespectacled girl who somehow reminds me of a character from Charlie Brown’s Peanuts, Akko’s pet cat, and of course both Akko’s parents.
 
Oh yes, I happen to notice a new character this time. It’s a penguin. Yup, a penguin with some thunder emblem embeded on its stomach. I think it’s Akko’s pet in addition to her cat, but since I don’t really watch the entire series, so I’m not really sure what this penguin’s real role is for here. Funny penguin.
 
Alas, the storyline here is still the same as the previous one. Akko has been bestowed some sort of magical hand mirror by some Queen of the Mirror Kingdom because of Akko’s kindness in treating the broken mirror with utmost care. This palm sized mirror allows Akko to change into whatever personality, shapes, sizes and forms she wishes with just an utter of some magical words. Sounds like a typical magical girl series. Only thing is that, Akko doesn’t transform into a cute super hero type to save the world from evil forces nor does she carries a magical wand.
 
Akko would use the mirror to transform herself into other people in order to help other people, whether it’s her friends or not, when they’re in trouble. Any kind of trouble. Yeah, this girl would do her best to help people out because she doesn’t want to see them in whatever hardship. So whether it’s taking the place of some wrestler, trying to give some self confidence back to some figure ice skater, making a kid to believe in Santa Claus (and the meaning behind it), attempting to calm/reason with a kid who doesn’t want to follow in his father footsteps of some job as his dad wants him to, pretending to be a replacement cat for a grandma who’s in denial that her real cat has died several years ago, impersonating as some mahou shoujo character, diffuse the tension among her friends when they’re fighting over whether an anpan or meat bun is best, or even as some alligator to allay rumours that some kid’s friends are calling her a liar because they don’t believe her about having seen some alligator. Not only human beings, but Akko too helps out animals like a cat who’s being bullied by other ‘gangster’ cats. You get the point.
 
Of course, all these are just the outside, but on the inside, it’s still Akko. Meaning she’s gotta play along and sometimes use her wits to ‘deceive’ and ‘act’ like she’s the real thing. And boy sometimes Akko really does get into a pinch trying to help these people out. Helping others isn’t as easy as it seems. But at least this girl is willing to give it a try. And in the end, it always ends well. At least for the episodes that I have watched.
 
As luck would have it, I managed to catch the last episode whereby Akko tansforms herself into some famous rock star which her pal Moko adores most. Yeah, the Queen of the Mirror Kingdom notices how Akko is frequently using her magic mirror out of fun and to surprise her friends instead of really helping those in need. Because of that, Akko’s mistake caused her identity to be found out by Moko, much to her disbelief. Not so much that the fact Akko could change, but she had misused her powers to deceived her friends.
 
And one of the rules in using the magic mirror is that nobody, and I mean not a single soul (except those involve in the realm of magic of course) must know about Akko’s identity and secret. Too bad Akko, it’s your fault this time. Though Akko felt bad and regretted her actions, the Queen of the Mirror Kingdom has no choice but to take away her mirror, even though Akko pleads that she’ll never do it again in the future. Once is bad enough.
 
But Akko manages to redeem herself when Moko who’s attending some special appearance of her idol rock star at some building, catches fire. Akko manages to rescue her and though she didn’t use the magic mirror’s powers, but I guess it’s because of her strong will and determination to save her friends, which caused Akko to transform into a fireman for the moment and rescu Moko.
 
In the end, though everybody is all right and the Queen of the Magic Kingdom erased everybody’s memories about that incident (out of convenience, I guess), Akko still didn’t manage to get back her magic mirror. But look at the bright side, at least Akko’s free from it all now as she heads to play some football with her friends. So people, you don’t really need a magic mirror to transform yourself to help others. It’s your heart and intention that is most important.
 
Another thing I find is that the opening theme song, Himitsu No Akko Chan (yes, the song is the same name as the anime title), seems to be more waltzy. Yup, with all those orchestral strings and such in play. The first ending song, Watashi No Uta Wo Kiite Hoshi, is so rap-like. I wonder if it’s fitting for a children’s series. Whereas the second ending song, Nippon Hare Da Yo~! Akko-chan, has Akko and her school buddies singing and performing.  Well, erm… Sounds like a genki group song. I can’t help but notice that the audience there watching the performance are so still! Yeah, as though they’re just props. Since your attention is on Akko and friends performing, you won’t be noticing those ‘rock’ people. Then this part I don’t get it. Once Akko’s done finishing singing, she’s surprised to notice that her microphone’s a hairbrush. What does this mean? Does it mean that Akko isn’t really singing and is just doing lip service? And that there’s some recorded singing of Akko? And what’s with that penguin striking a row of chimes at the end of it all. Really dunno.
 
Anyway, upon further research, though there aren’t much information on this series, I found out that this version that I’ve recently watched is actually the third remake of the 1969 version of the series! Wow. That’s a real long time ago. And looks like the drawing there is really from that era. So, that previous better looking one I watched is actually the remake of this version too. Uh-huh, they remade it somewhere in year 1988 with 61 episodes wheres the third remake is around 10 years later somewhere in year 1998 with only 44 episodes. I guess there’s nothing much to tell since the original one has a whooping 97 episodes. However, all 3 versions still maintains that basic premise that Akko uses her magic mirror to transform herself and help others. There are several movies made too, but little is known about them. Not that I’m really interested.
 
I suppose this series is quite popular back then having being translated and dubbed into several languages like Italian, Spanish and French. The characters too are given their own names to fit the local culture and stuff. Most probably back at that time, there weren’t many cartoons around the world and anime isn’t a niche yet. Uh-huh. Plus, no internet and other stuffs kids would do these days to preoccupy themselves with.
 
Having said that myself, I guess I myself too don’t have a life. As mentioned, I must have had too many free time to watch several clips of this series and even do a little research about it when the series ended. So unless you want to find out how the nature of animes were during those days or probably those people from that era, for nostalgic purposes, then I suppose this series is quite okay with some magical girl adventure, comedy and a little lessons in life. For me, I think I’ll be better off watching more current animes. I’m even way past Doraemon.