Elf Ban Kakyuusei

February 6, 2009

Hehehe. I decided to go watch Elf Ban Kakyuusei after my previous blog on Kakyuusei 2. Going backwards in time? This is a 4 episode OVA with around 30 minutes running time and is actually the first of the many Kakyuusei series to follow. This anime as usual is one of those which have been adapted from the PC dating simulation game but I think the game was called a different name. Not to sure about that.
 
Also, this is quite an old production as I discovered that it was released way back in the year 1997. Wow. That seems to be a pretty long time ago. Yeah, I was still schooling then. So as I have said in my previous blog on this series, there is no relation in the storyline or the characters of the two Kakyuusei series that I have watched. Unlike in Kakyuusei 2, there is no air of mystery here as it focuses more on the drama romance and perhaps the little harem in this short OVA series.
 
Episode 1
One of the main girl characters of the series, Mizuho Yuuki, is seen walking home after her tennis club activities and you’d expect to see some fanservice over the series when she jumps over a dog who spots her panties and goes wild. Uh huh. I can’t believe that dog is a pervert. Mizuho cheekily says to the dog that it was looking at her panties and quips how ecchi it is. I wonder if it understood what she said.
 
Mizuho arrives home and decides to take a shower. So she has no qualms about her little naked brother, Tatsuya, coming out of the shower. But Mizuho has something to worry about when she suddenly spots her classmate, Tohru Nagase, soon coming out from the bathroom after Tatsuya. Naked. Luckily, there is no myth that if a girl sees a guy totally naked, she has to marry him.
 
So we find out that Tohru will be living temporarily at their place because his home is under some renovation, his dad is working overseas and well, you could say Mizuho’s mom likes that guy. So is little Tatsuya. He’s so happy having a ‘big brother’ staying with them. However, Mizuho isn’t too pleased and wonders why her family is trying to screw up her life while looking at a penguin keychain in her room.
 
The next day, Tohru wanted to walk to school with Mizuho but the latter doesn’t want to because it might send wrong signals if other people see them coming out from the same house together. Too late. Some girls already did. Soon, the talk of Tohru and Mizuho became a hot topic in school as it spreads like wildfire. When Tohru enters his class, he spots a love umbrella of his name and Mizuho’s on the blackboard. He’s furious to know who did it and it seems, his best pal, Minoru Goto, was the one. So Tohru drags him out of the class and to the announcement room. Over the P.A. speaker, he boldly tells the entire school that there is nothing going on between him and Mizuho and the reason why he’s staying at her place. Minoru takes this opportunity to do an interview session asking several other questions but a teacher, Shizuka Mitsuki, comes in to stop whatever they’re doing and reprimands them. Mizuho is glad that Tohru had cleared up a misunderstanding while her best friend, Miko Kamiyama, totally believes in Tohru’s words.
 
Because Miko’s mind has been pretty much pre-occupied and not concentrating, she drops her eraser during class and when she goes pick it up, all the perverted guys were like having a nice view of her butt. WTF?! During recess, Mizuho and Miko are having a chat on the rooftop and since Mizuho denied anything going on between her and Tohru, Miko says that she has feelings for Tohru, shocking Mizuho. Miko also wants Mizuho to tell Tohru that she’ll bring lunch for Tohru tomorrow. Well, from Mizuho’s body language, we can see that she harbours some feelings for Tohru. I mean, she can’t even concentrate on her tennis. So obvious.
 
We find out that Tohru is working part time in his uncle’s cafe called Dogeza and his uncle somewhat reminds me of Charlie Chaplin! Then a girl named Ai Minamizato and her friend Miyuki Ijima comes by. I can’t believe that shy girl Ai came all the way to the cafe just to tell Tohru that she believed in what he said through the P.A. speaker before rushing out. That’s it? Oh yeah. It’s like some big accomplishment. Congrats girl. On another note, now I know why Miko is named so. Because she’s also working as a miko priestess at a shrine temple run by her dad. Can a miko priestess fall in love? Ah well, she’s a girl of that age, so it’s natural.
 
That night, Mizuho can’t sleep and goes down to get some drink when Tohru did the same thing. Mizuho caught Tohru staring at her. It’s so dark, can he see anything with that dim fridge light? Before Tohru returns to bed, Mizuho tells him that Miko will come by tomorrow. The next day, Miko comes by and has Tohru eat her delicious lunch. He says how she’ll make a good wife, sending heartbeats of excitement to her. So when Tohru invites Miko to the pool tomorrow, Miko accepts. As Mizuho is walking Miko back to the temple, Miko wonders if Mizuho would like to come with them to the pool. Mizuho couldn’t giver her answer in time as Miko had already gone in. Mizuho walks back when it starts to rain. Obviously, she has a lot on her mind as she takes shelter nearby and spacing out.
 
Episode 2
Miko is seen trying on various swimsuits in a store and fanservice cue when she trips while taking off her undies. At the pool, Miko finally arrives to see Mizuho and Tohru waiting for her. But Mizuho soon decides to leave the duo alone as she leaves by saying something urgent has come up. We then see Mizuho taking a train with Tatsuya to see a movie and Tatsuya is lamenting that he wants to go to the pool with Tohru but soon takes back his words when Mizuho threatens she’ll not take him to the movies.
 
At the pool’s dressing room, Ai and Miyuki spot Miko there in her swimsuit and wonders what kind of guy she’s with. At the same time, since Ai and Miyuki are changing and having ‘fun’ fondling with each other, the other ladies watching them think that they must be in some kind of yuri relationship. At the movies, there is a long line but a classmate of Mizuho, the rich and influential Haruhiko Satake, seems to spot Mizuho and decides to use his authority to jump the line and reserve special seats for them. Though Tatsuya is suspicious but all this first class service experience made him happy. He’s still a kid alright. You can tell that Satake is trying to hit on Mizuho but Tatsuya always get in the way unknowingly. Mizuho can’t concentrate on the movie as all she could think is Tohru and Miko.
 
Speaking of which, Miko tells Tohru how strict her dad is and that her curfew is 4pm. Wow. So early. Then Miyuki spots Tohru with Miko and gets upset and throws a beach ball at him. This causes him to lunge forward and accidentally grab Miko’s boobs. Of course he quickly backs away and both felt embarrassed. Tohru wonders who threw the ball as Miyuki is gone by then. After finish watching the movies, Satake treats Mizuho and her little bro for some cakes. He asks her if she has any boyfriend, in which she says no. He could’ve started flirting with Mizuho if not for Tatsuya who got in the way.
 
Tohru is on the way back with Minoru who was passing by, when he is being confronted by Ai and Miyuki. Miyuki wants to know if Miko is his girlfriend, in which he denies. Then Miyuki pushes Ai in front of Tohru and the latter got a little frightened on what to say. Anyway she says of wanting to date him by meeting her tomorrow at the park but runs away soon after. What was that all about? Minoru proceeds to tease him. When Tohru reaches home, he spots Mizuho coming out of Satake’s limo. Tohru’s expression seems to indicate that he isn’t pleased with it and thinks that the important thing was a date with Satake. But then Tatsuya comes out and spots Tohru as he calls his name. Mizuho realizes that Tohru is there and has that worried look on her face while Satake decides to take his leave. Later when Tohru asks if there is anything going on between her and Satake, she didn’t give any answer, fuelling his suspicions even further.
 
The next day, as Tohru decides to go out, Mizuho gets a call from Satake. Tatsuya wonders if Tohru is going out on a date and pesters him to take him to the pool. But Tohru tells him to go ask his sister instead, which that little kid doesn’t want to. Once Tohru leaves, Miko arrives with her lunch for Tohru but Mizuho tells her that he isn’t in. At the park, we see Tohru and Ai sitting together (with a distance) on a bench. Ai is so shy it feels so irritating. Miyuki and Minoru are spying on them from a distance. Everytime Tohru tries to sit nearer, Ai moves away. *Sigh*. Want to date or not? Miko on the other hand is having her lunch alone in the park and spots other lovey-dovey couples.
 
In the evening, Mizuho is returning after shopping for groceries and spots Tohru with Ai and Miyuki. When they part, Mizuho confronts him and tells him that he has betrayed Miko. She also tells him how Miko has come by to have lunch with him. But Tohru’s attitude seems like as though he doesn’t mind and even tells her this isn’t her business and should stay out of it like he did with her date with Satake. This upsets Mizuho very much as she runs away in tears. Tohru grabs her hand but she slaps it away and tells him to leave her house and not set foot in it again. That night while Mizuho is sleeping on her bed, thinking of what has recently happened, looks like Tohru is staying at the park (having an outdoor view for a change, huh?) and Miko seems pretty happy herself.
 
Episode 3
Mizuho is thinking about last night’s events and wonders why she said those weird stuff and would go apologize to Tohru. But Tatsuya barges in and tells her that Tohru has left, shocking Mizuho. Wait a minute, didn’t she tell him to leave? Now it’s like she can’t believe that he took her words seriously. Geez… Later Mizuho is dejectedly walking by a flower shop when the florist lady wonders if she’s looking for Tohru. To Mizuho’s surprise, Tohru is seen coming out from a place where he is staying temporarily nearby Dogeza. Miko then comes up to him as they walk together. Mizuho decides to hide herself from being seen by pretending to look at the flowers in the shop.
 
Miko and Tohru are going out on a date as they start off at the bowling alley with Tohru teaching her how to bowl but she accidentally threw the bowling ball at his face. Ouch. Gotta hurt. Later, they visited the aquarium. Next morning at school, Mizuho and Miko watches how Ai and Miyuki greets Tohru coming into school and Miko quips how Tohru is popular with the girls. Later in class, Satake tells Mizuho how he is organizing a party for tennis club members at Dogeza and Mizuho accepts his invitation. However, Mizuno and Tohru happen to pass by and heard their conversation and Tohru doesn’t seem too happy as they leave.
 
As Tohru is working at Dogeza, Ai comes up to him and says how she’s not going to give up and lose to Miko. Another date for Tohru and Miko the next day at the amusement park. Then as they’re taking a ride in the ferris wheel, a short earthquake causes them to be thrown together. As they look into each other’s eyes, they kissed. It’s already late at night as Tohru and Miko are rushing back because it’s way past her curfew. But Miko didn’t mind since she’s happy being with him. Mizuho on the other hand spots the duo happily running hand in hand. Spacing out again…
 
Indeed Miko gets a scolding from her dad but soon develops a cold. Mizuho went to visit her and Miko tells her about her kiss with Tohru. More spacing out. That night, Mizuho gets another call from Satake wanting to come to his house an hour earlier before the party because he wants to play a tennis match with her. Meanwhile Tohru is walking home when Ai calls to him. Now she is bolder and tells him that she wants to date him but Tohru says he doesn’t know her well. So Ai asks she would do anything to make him know her better. Tohru then looks around and gets an idea. Oh dear, he brings her to a love hotel! In the room, Tohru tells her to strip and we see Ai reluctantly and embarrassingly doing so. Ai can’t take it anymore as she breaks down and apologizes. Luckily Tohru didn’t take advantage of her and says how she’ll meet the right person in time. He kisses Ai on the forehead.
 
The next day as Mizuho and Satake are playing a game, she sprains her ankle. Satake takes her inside the house for treatment. Tohru has just arrived at Dogeza to find it crowded with tennis club members. Then one of the members says how Mizuho and Satake aren’t here and are probably having some sort of relationship, which prompts Tohru to get a little upset. He soon rushes to Satake’s place. I don’t know why but I kinda feel that since there’s some other guy ‘threatening’ his harem so he goes into action although he has a few other girls who admire him already. Must be lah. After Satake treats Mizuho’s ankle, he suddenly let his perverted side get the better of him. Uh huh. I guess all this was just a ploy so that he could do something funny on Mizuho. Mizuho realized too late as that jerk starts caressing her feet and fondles her breasts. Mizuho struggles but her injury prevented her from running away. She begs for him to stop but Satake says that nobody is coming and his parents are away. So they’re home alone. Their own private party, says he.
 
Just when he least expected it, Tohru comes by shouting if Mizuho is in. Yeah, he climbs over the gate (why aren’t there any security? I guess what Satake said was true seeing that there is really NOBODY in his house). Satake is distracted and Mizuho takes this opportunity to kick his crotch. OUCH! Tohru is at the front door when Mizuho comes out and falls into his arms.
 
Tohru gives Mizuho a piggyback ride and at the park, he bandages her ankle. Mizuho asks if he likes Miko and he reply yes. So when she asks why is he dating other girls, he says he is doing so to understand girls better. Yeah, even if his intentions are genuine, if that only works in the real world. While Mizuho says he may hurt the girl’s feelings, Tohru says she might be jealous and asks her about Satake. This causes Mizuho to be a little upset as she shed a tear. Tohru quickly apologizes but Mizuho turns around and gives him a short kiss on his lips before running away (hey is her ankle okay already?). Tohru is in shock over what has happened as he is left standing there.
 
Episode 4
Of course that sudden course of action has caused Mizuho to constantly think why she did that. So much so when her mom wakes her up for school the next day, she gives an excuse that she wants to skip school due to her injury. But her mom wouldn’t allow that little injury as she forces her up still. Also. due to Mizuho’s injury, Tohru decides to give Mizuho a ride to school everyday. Though Tohru felt sympathy for Miko she did mention how she enjoys being given a ride by Tohru. When Miyuki spots Tohru and Mizuho on a bicycle together, she gets upset but Ai is happy to be a spectator and watch it all from a distance. Is she implying that she’s dropping out of the ‘race’? Woah, Tohru riding his bicycle into the shoe box area?! And in class, when Satake spots Mizuho looking his way, he gets a little panic and tries to get away but trips, making everyone laugh at him. Serves him right.
 
On an evening on the school’s rooftop, Tohru tells Miko that she has feelings for Tohru and would she mind dating him. Miko suddenly gets furious and says that Tohru is hers and only hers forever. Of course lah, if you ask someone so bluntly like that. But all that is just a nightmare as Mizuho wakes up in sweat. So when Tohru is waiting to pick up Mizuho, she tells him there is no further need as her ankle is healed. But Mizuho is been feeling down since and hasn’t show up on her tennis club activities causing some of her pals to wonder what is wrong with her.
 
At the park, Mizuho decides to throw away that penguin keychain when Tohru comes by. They chat on several things like the upcoming school festival and when Mizuho accidentally swing the penguin keychain with her fingers, it slips and drop right next to Tohru. He picks it up and remembers that he gave this to her as a good luck charm during one of her tennis tournaments. Mizuho then runs away. Meanwhile Miko is sweeping at her temple when Tohru comes by. As they’re about to kiss, the sky suddenly turn dark and flooded the whole area. Yeah, another dream from Miko as she nearly drowned in her own bathtub. She even quips what a dirty dream she had.
 
Next day as Miko and Tohru have another outing, Tohru tells Miko that he loves Mizuho. At first, Miko didn’t realize what he meant as she too says that she likes Mizuho. Until Tohru pointed out it wasn’t that kind of love he was talking about. But Miko didn’t get mad nor sad. She asks if he hates her now which he didn’t. With that, they play some little cops-and-robbers game of their own and when Tohru catches up with her, she tells him to kiss her, which he did.
 
At school, Mizuho bumps into Miko who decides to invite her to a concert. On the day of the concert, Mizuho wonders why Miko is late when it’s about to start. Mizuho is then surprised that Tohru comes by and asks if this seat is available. He too is surprised to see Mizuho. He says that he was being given the concert tickets by Miko. They realized it was Miko’s plan to set them up together. How noble and nice of Miko to do so. I know in the real world, there’ll be lots of hatred and fighting if that ever happen. After the concert ends, the duo rushes back to Dogeza as it starts pouring. Since the cafe is closed, Tohru searches for the hidden spare key nearby. I don’t know why but isn’t it dangerous to leave one especially for a business premise? As the duo go upstairs, Mizuho kisses Tohru and says she has been suppressing her feelings for him all this while for Miko’s sake. But ironically, it was Miko who brought them together after realizing things. They confessed their feelings for each other.
 
Before you know it, the 2 made love. Don’t expect to see anything flashy or hentai here. Mizuho wakes up the next morning to find Tohru looking at her while she sleep. She then says how she loves him 100% but Tohru says he only loves her 75%. So what about the balance? He wants to reserve the 25% balance so that he can continue to love her more. Isn’t that the same? As they kiss, Tohru puts the penguin keychain back on her finger.
 
Just another teenage love story…
Yeah, that is what it is. But because this is an old production, so I guess the storyline reflects the anime during that era. Even the drawing, art and animation too. As I expected, Tohru and Mizuho ended up together to end the OVA on a feel good note. I guess due to the popularity of the OVA, the producers then began producing the TV series entitled Kakyuusei, which has more episodes. Furthermore, I found out that there is supposed to be more female characters but since this is a short OVA, I suppose they can only focus on a handful as the rest made only cameo appearances. So my guess is that they will be given more prominence in the TV series. But the TV series as I also read has a different male character lead.
 
Also, there are quite a few spin-off sequels and alternate retelling of the series. Some have more adult content in it. Speaking of the fanservice, I wouldn’t say that the series is filled with them. Just here and there. I mean, after the one at the beginning of the 1st episode and the opening credits animation, you’d think that there will be some ‘eye candy’ throughout the series. No, I’m not disappointed, mind you. I’m not sure about the final part in the last episode which has Mizuho talking to viewers (as the eyes from the camera’s point of view) about making a change in their life in the school’s storeroom.
 
The opening theme is sung by Mari Adachi and is entitled Tokimeki No Yukue. It sounds quite a lively pop song from that era. But I find the ending theme, Suki To Ietara, sung by Riko Sayama (also the voice of Mizuho in the series) to be unsuitable. I know it’s a slow ballad but somehow I find her voice a little out of tune. Unless it’s on purpose. The ending theme for the final episode is Hane No Nai Tenshi, also sung by Riko Sayama and is a little upbeat.
 
While there are many better other teenage love stories (and harem series too!) out there, I’m not saying that this OVA is totally a waste of time. Back in those days, I guess the storyline was uncomplicated and simple. I’m still wondering if I’ll be able to get a harem of my own… Well, a man can only dream… Yeah, keep dreaming. But also continue watching more of such animes ;P.
 

Elf Ban Kakyuusei