Manabi Straight! – 02
OP: 「A Happy Life」 by 林原めぐみ (Hayashibara Megumi)
Watch the OP! Mirror 1 Mirror 2 (9.5MB, XviD)
I like the OP a bit more than the ED, though it’s just a personal preference that I really can’t justify. Stylistically, the opening sequence is interesting because of all the graffiti, but I wish they didn’t do all that camera focusing effect.
Before school one morning, Manabi’s brother finds her dressed up in glasses and pigtails – what she considers student council president style. She ends up heading to school looking like she normally does, and even embarrasses Mei by waving at her on the bus along the way. Upon reaching the front of the school, Manabi finds Mikan and gets her to do her own version of the Massugu Go! The two of them rush off after class, and Mutsuki tells Mei that it’s because they need to clean the student council room since the student council president of Aikou Academy is coming for a courtesy visit. Manabi and Mikan spend a lot of time sorting things out, but Manabi’s antics and the general disarray means that they don’t get much accomplished. Later that afternoon, Mutsuki comes by the room and finds the two girls lying on the table and looking out the window. She decides to help them, but the girls still don’t get much done until Mei comes by and Mutsuki drags her into helping too. Taking charge, Mei declares that to arrange the place neatly, they need order and they need to get rid of all the useless stuff. When the girls decide to continue tomorrow and start talking about food, Mei quietly goes to leave. Manabi tries to bring her into the conversation, but Mei claims that she has things to do. Despite this, Manabi still thanks Mei for the advice and waves goodbye.
Under Mei’s direction, the girls clean up the room the next day and decide to sell some of the junk. Momo comes by and starts filming as the girls gather a crowd that’s attracted to their 50 yen price tags. In tallying up the money afterwards, Mikan announces that the group has a total of 9480 yen after sales and a special donation from their teacher. Taking the money, the girls head to the home improvement store and buy what they need for the student council room. Back at school, Mutsuki is trying to get another club to help out when Momo starts broadcasting from the student council room. After announcing that the theme of the room will be that of a cafe, Momo turns the camera on to Manabi who explains that she wants to make this into a gathering spot – a place where everyone in the school can gather and have fun. Everyone is welcome to come play, eat, drink, and talk, and the school will become more and more fun. As a result of Manabi’s speech, groups from throughout the school come to help set up the room. The newly decorated room is finished by evening, and Manabi, Mikan, Mutsuki, Momo, and Mei are all so tired that they fall asleep there. The next morning, the Aikou Academy student council president arrives and introduces herself.
Well, I still wouldn’t say this show has a substantial story, but it’s got more than enough cuteness and humor with stuff like Manabi’s brother’s reaction to her dressing up and Mikan and Momo falling asleep together at the store. I’m also a bit surprised that they decided not to use the Claymation ED for the second episode and instead opt to animate through it. Maybe it’s just me, but it feels like studios these days are getting more creative on how they use OP and EDs.