Kimikiss pure rouge – 01
It’s early spring, and with the sakura in full bloom, a mature yet youthful girl walks out of the train station and is met with a nostalgic view: the town in which she grew up in, not having visited in quite some time.
Elsewhere, some douchebag is awakened by the sound of the doorbell. Ding dong. Ding dong. Ding dong. Goddamn, I’M COMING. The obnoxious guest lets herself in – oh, it’s that same girl. The douchebag walks down the stairs and meets the gaze of a striking beauty at his door – “eh, who might you be?”
The girl starts laughing! “You haven’t changed one bit!” she jests. This charade continues on and on, leading to the girl letting herself in the shower, a place where all hot girls inevitably go to take their miniskirts and powder blue underwear off. Naturally, this coincides directly with the guy’s best friend showing up at his door, the girl walking out wearing only a towel, etc.
Except this time, the friend recognizes the girl! “It’s Mao-oneechan!” Kazuki proclaims. The lightbulb finally turns on in Koichi’s head – oh, it’s our childhood friend, who went to study abroad in France… two years ago. Apparently in anime / Japan, two years is long enough to completely forget a face… or in Mao’s case, a rockin body!
At any rate, Koichi’s mom comes home and the four have their reunion cup of tea. Uh, by the way Kazuki, why did you come again? OH SHI-
At the park, a giant teddy bear is having an epic battle with a silent gorilla. It’s the new production of the Cinema Research Society, a promotional video to recruit potential members at the start of the new semester. The director, also the club president, is a rather greasy fellow, and he orders Kazuki and Koichi around like little kids.
Back at home, Kazuki tells his imouto Nana that ol’ Mao is back. Not really paying attention to their conversation as my mind has wandered to places that are best not described here.
Swing back to the other home, where Koichi is sound asleep. Mao walks into him room in her skimpy casual getup, and with her yearning, vulnerable eyes, looks upon Koichi and utters, “Koichi, I can’t sleep…” Pan to a shot of the closed door to Mao’s room, where she is making some rather overtly suspicious…sounds…ah, not there, ah, oh, ahh… grrrr you bastard turn turn TURN! Ah, video game. No biggie, no biggie.
Next day, the first day of the new semester, Koichi and Kazuki find themselves in the same class (yay), along with the creepy film club guy (doh). Mao meets her homeroom teacher (Ayako Kawasumi), who also happens to be the faculty advisor for the film club. It’s like one big happy family. And as we all know, families are all about drama! Maybe next ep…
Along the way we meet this quiet big dude named Eiji – he’s really cold to all the hot girls around him, supposedly putting on that air of mysteriousness that’s supposed to drive girls wild. Well, it seems to work with Mao, as she can’t stop pestering him for a word or two. Does this make him the male version of tsundere?
Koichi bumps into a girl in his class and blushes up immediately – the girl does the same. And yet, they’re not going out, nor seem to really respond to each other too well. The girl runs out the classroom, her face as red as a baboon’s ass – my guess is that he confessed to her, but she turned him down just because she was so caught off-guard. It’s not that she doesn’t like him, but her delicate maiden heart just wasn’t ready!
And finally, Kazuki finds some mysterious girl lobbing paper airplanes out a window. After some smalltalk, she suggests they experiment with something. Eh? Experiment? Yep, she says, as she stands on her tiptoes and touch his lips with hers.
You know, after watching it for the 30th time today, this episode isn’t bad at all. We’re obviously set up for some hard-hitting drama down the line, and a ton of questions left unanswered, history left uncovered, and characters that needed explaining. So while this first episode might have seemed a little boring from the outset, it did a good job at laying the foundation from which the rest of the show is likely to build upon,
Technically, this show was what we’ve come to expect from the people that brought us Honey & Clover and Nodame Cantabile. The animation was solid, with that unique watercolor-ish art style, the characters look terrific, the voice acting tremendous with its all-star cast. The OP/ED songs are decent and seem quite appropriate, the BGM well done.
My issue with it? It didn’t wow me. The first episode of Honey & Clover was amazing with the return of Morita-senpai and his huge bags of croquettes, the first ep of Nodame went from soothingly triumphant to giddily romantic after Nodame proclaimed her love for Chiaki. We did get a big kiss moment at the end of this episode, but it came totally out of the blue, not to mention with the supporting male!
As with its two predecessors, Kimikiss is shaping up to have some well-developed and intriguing characters that have plenty of personality and meaningful history behind them – it will be interesting to see what is to become of them!