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Manabi Straight! – 02 »

Manabi Straight! – 01

On the day of the swim meet, Inamori Mika is running to school when she encounters a girl she doesn’t know. This girl jumps down from a bridge and notices that Mika’s uniform is also of Seiou Academy, so she pulls out her hover scooter and tells Mika to get on. Mika’s friend Mutsuki is already at the pool and is trying to call her, but is unable to get through because Mika is currently holding on for her life with the new girl’s driving. The pair finally arrive during the principal’s speech by crashing through the fence, launching into the air, and landing in the pool. The principal and the class 2-A’s teacher Shimojima eventually figure out that the girl who came with Mika is the new transfer student Amamiya Manami. Mika and Mutsuki also learn who Manami is and find out that she’ll be in their 2-A class. When Mutsuki goes over and asks Manami about her swimming form, Manami replies back that she uses the Manabi Form. In fact, Manami even goes by the name Manabi. Manabi looks ready to swim, but she screws up her jump into the water and gets her body caught in the lane divider. Nevertheless, Manabi goes home happy that night to her older brother and proudly shows him the participation prize she got.
The next day, a pair of girls are discussing the scheduled student assembly when they bump into and greet a girl named Etou Mei. She opens her mouth to greet them back, but then closes it and walks away. Mutsuki then rushes up to Mei and gives her a big push in the back to greet her, but Mei keeps walking after she regains her balance. Mutsuki keeps up with her as she tries to run away and persists until Mei finally greets Mutsuki back. When it comes time for the assembly, Mika finds herself alone on stage as the student council officer. Meanwhile, another girl named Odori Momoha is filming herself feeding pigeons when she sees someone speeding towards her on a hover scooter. This person is Manabi, who is late, and she asks Momoha for directions to school. While Manabi is making her way there, Mika has already started the assembly and is telling the students about the student council in order to recruit them. Unfortunately, Mika finds that almost everyone has fallen asleep from her speech. As it turns out, Mika joined the student council right when the previous president and only member was about to transfer schools, so Mika is currently the sole member of the student council.
Mika’s speech then gets interrupted by the arrival of Manabi, who flies through the door and announces her candidacy for the student council president position. However, the principal tells the students that Manabi’s candidacy will have to be put on hold because she just transferred into the school and thus wouldn’t know anything about the student council. Hearing this, Manabi proceeds to give a speech about the student council improving student life. Mei eventually gets frustrated enough by everything to stand up and tell Mika to hurry up and end the assembly. Mika decides that they should decide by majority vote and asks for applause from Manabi supporters. When Mika is the only one that claps her hands, Manabi gets on stage and starts singing the Seiou school song that she apparently memorized after hearing it during the swim meet. Everyone is so touched and so impressed by her that they all applaud, making Manabi the next student council president. The now infamous Manabi introduces herself later to her new 2-A class – which includes Mika, Mutsuki, Mei, and Momoha – and declares that her favorite motto is Massugu GO!


ED: 「Lucky&Happy」 by 林原めぐみ (Hayashibara Megumi)
Watch the OP! Mirror 1 Mirror 2
As expected from ufotable, the entire ending is in Claymation, just like many of their other recent series. I’ve got mixed feelings at best about the Hayashibara Megumi song, and I’m hoping that the OP is a bit better.

Well that wasn’t quite what I had expected. I had a hard time putting voices to faces since these high-schoolers look so young and I recognized all the voice actresses (Hirano Aya, Nonaka Ai, etc) from relatively older type roles. This was particularly bothering for me when Horie Yui started singing towards the end of the episode because although I really liked the song, it just didn’t feel like Manabi was singing it.
The animation quality was pretty good though, living up to what I saw from the promotional videos. Truthfully though, I actually think that the soundtrack was even stronger than the animation. The background songs weren’t quite as addictive to listen to as the guitar ones from the PVs, but it was good nonetheless.
Overall, I’m slightly underwhelmed by the first episode, but it’s partly because I had fairly high expectations coming in because of those promos. For now, it feels like it’s lacking that particular something that would draw me into watching this series. Manabi does remind me a lot of Suzumiya Haruhi in the way she wants to make things more fun, but it’s still to early to tell what adventures she’ll lead the girls on. There’s a lot of potential here though, so I think I’ll watch a least a couple more episodes before I make any decisions about the show. On that note, the preview was actually pretty cool to watch.

January 7, 2007 at 4:39 pm
  • January 7, 2007 at 4:45 pmtensai_otaku

    You have a point and I understand that!!
    ” I AGREE “

  • January 7, 2007 at 4:50 pmNobunaga

    Megumi Hayashibara is doing the OP!? newsflash for me!
    Last time she did any OP or ED were Shaman King (2001).

    Looks rather good with the animation and story.

  • January 7, 2007 at 4:50 pmj1m0ne

    The OP/ED songs are actually just cover versions of Okazaki Ritsuko songs, so I guess if you don’t like the ED song you’re probably not gonna like the OP either….

  • January 7, 2007 at 5:30 pmAceofspades53

    I do believe Megumi Hayashibara did the opening for Love Hina.

  • January 7, 2007 at 5:40 pmLikkun

    Yeah, I agree with about everything you said. When I was watching it, I expected some real over the top stuff. Instead, it felt real calm and collected. Not like minded though but the whole Manabi singing scene at the end of the episode felt way too out of place. At least the song was impressive though but I’m already starting to dislike Manabi’s character. Right now I want to see more of Momoha.

    Other then that, I was also thrown off by all of them having M names.

  • January 7, 2007 at 6:21 pmNeo Horizon

    The screenshots look really great. I can’t wait for the summary. ^^

  • January 7, 2007 at 6:31 pmAmbient Escape

    Oh dear god The CUTENESS! =)

  • January 7, 2007 at 6:33 pmsento

    Looks cute. I might give it a shot. x3

  • January 7, 2007 at 6:58 pmhj

    this pedo show creeps me out

  • January 7, 2007 at 7:19 pmmasama

    this shows is kinda like ichigo mashimaro, one that you dont want to get caught watching by your colleagues, too much loliness…
    really cute tho

  • January 7, 2007 at 9:56 pmanim3guy

    i think diz is another pedo style anime so i’m out on watching this i thought it was something nice

  • January 7, 2007 at 10:09 pmasian182

    kinda looks like a chibi anime

  • January 7, 2007 at 10:37 pmTom

    Just saw the first episode myself, Mikan’s voice and behaviour kept reminding me of Ibuki Fuuko from Clannad. Come to think of it, all of the main seiyu’s have had some “irregular” gakuen anime roots in them. I look forward to this series.

  • January 7, 2007 at 11:11 pmImpzie

    I MUST watch this. This is like my top series to view for the winter series. I can’t wait for it to be available, hohoh~

  • January 7, 2007 at 11:55 pmbrooklyn otaku

    HOOK!!!!!!!!!!!! NEXT.

  • January 8, 2007 at 12:12 amtensai_otaku



    ” OSHIMAI ”

  • January 8, 2007 at 12:25 amDrmChsr0




  • January 8, 2007 at 12:54 ammoyism

    Is it me or is the BGM they use when Manabi is riding her scooter similar to that from Back to the Future 2 when Marty McFly does the same?

  • January 8, 2007 at 1:07 amNeo Horizon

    I feel really bad for Mika since she’s the only one on the student council. At least she has Manabi with her now. :D (But I guess whether or not that’s a good thing still remains to be seen…)

    Thanks for blogging this! \o/

  • January 8, 2007 at 1:22 ammutio

    Gawd, never saw a series with so much loli in it^^
    However the first episode couldn’t wake my interest really. As Omni said the soundtrack was pretty good, but for me it needs at least 1-2 more episodes to decide if I watch it or not.

  • January 8, 2007 at 1:31 amhenry

    loliness is enough for me to watch the series. I love Mei..

  • January 8, 2007 at 3:53 amJin

    Looks loli…I think I’m gonna check it out o .o; Seems iffy..

  • January 8, 2007 at 7:19 amModel_X

    The screenshots look kinda cute and funny at the same time. Time to give it a shot.

  • January 8, 2007 at 12:22 pmEleutheria

    Mikan tries too hard.

  • January 8, 2007 at 1:48 pmkaito

    wow 0__0 a lolicon’s wet dream.

  • January 8, 2007 at 2:33 pmAnacone

    That was like a eurovision song, not so bad maybe possible classic…heh

  • January 8, 2007 at 2:35 pmAnacone

    I mean that ED…
    Looking forward series…

  • January 8, 2007 at 2:39 pmHobby

    Ugh, no thanks. Who watches this stuff? Late night pedocons and sexually disfunctional salary men?

  • January 8, 2007 at 5:26 pmVexx

    Interesting how *any* show that features one or more young girls gets labeled “pedo” by some. Makes me wonder what is going on in the heads of folks so quick to label it that way…. :)

  • January 8, 2007 at 6:15 pmGDP

    Vexx: Too much fanservice in shows has corrupted their thoughts, and they think that any anime portrayal of females must be the producers’ attempt to cater to viewers’ sexual drives. Ergo: a show featuring chibi females is “pedo”.

  • January 8, 2007 at 6:28 pmHobby

    Oh come on Vexx, wake up. A show featuring pre-teens airing in the early hours. In Japan. Who exactly do you think this show aimed at? Insomniac 11 years olds? I think not.

  • January 8, 2007 at 8:22 pmLikkun

    Well then it wouldn’t technically be pedophilia would it? It would have to be ephebophilia in any sort of argument. But either way, even though the art is kind of questionable, the rest of the show is presented nicely. It could have easily just been straight up half-assed fanservice.

  • January 8, 2007 at 8:39 pmRiXeD

    One word:


  • January 9, 2007 at 5:26 amEndz

    ahh.. you people make it sound like… depicting underage girls in anime is a pedos dream. In fact I dont see too much fanservice in manabi straight!. The only fanservice in this episode i could think of was the swimming part.

  • January 9, 2007 at 1:37 pmKorie

    Actually, Megumi Hayashibara did the OP for Shrine of the Morning Mist in 2002, more recently than Shaman King. And it’s good too- it’s called Faint Love.
    Very underrated series, and very enjoyable if you get a chance to see it.

    As for this new series… I think I have to see it. It seems to have a similar schoolgirls-run-wild effect to Pani Poni Dash and Azumanga Daioh. I just hope it’s crazy enough!

  • January 9, 2007 at 4:28 pm41nano

    Is it me or these high school girls just look likes lolita from elementary school ?

    Fucking pedobear :-|

  • January 10, 2007 at 10:23 amshh227

    I have not seen this show but I liked the ending theme! I also like the animation too even though this anime looks a bit controversial.

  • January 10, 2007 at 7:21 pmBata-kun

    I’m watching this because it’s UFOtable, it has good music, it has a solid seiyuu list and after saying all of this, I feel that it’ll be a fun series. Oh and I’m watching this because it’s not a late Thursday/early Friday anime series, one of the last things I need right now. There’s no way I’m giving this series any serious consideration of being my anime of the year (as I feel that “Nodame Cantabile” is the show to beat), but if it’s fun in the end, that’s all that matters. Ne?

  • January 10, 2007 at 8:32 pmdeathgod

    loli blood slowly awakening,

  • January 12, 2007 at 12:49 pmDeathclock

    So very,… Loli-ish o.o

  • July 12, 2007 at 5:54 amThe Timinator

    I watched the entire series and thought it was well done, but I’m baffled as to why it’s being labled loli or pedo. There wasn’t any of what I would define as ‘fanservice’ in the series unless you have a sick closet-lolicon mind that’s always searching for such things.
    It seemed to me just a story about teens making the tough transition from what they are as kids to what they become as emerging adults. The whole school spirit theme was kind of boring to me because I was never a school spirit kind of guy.