Kouichi & Yuumi
So after their first date, which wasn’t really a date considering there were like 10 other people there, their relationship continues to progress at 5 centimeters per hour. He still sucks at talking to her, she still blushes all over the place whenever he does, and it isn’t until the end of the episode that he works up the courage to ask her for some help regarding books and that library stuff she’s good at. Good thing about these kind of relationships – they progress so slowly you never really feel the bumpy ride.
Progression: At a snail’s pace, but at least it seems to be in the right direction
Kouichi & Mao
No more updates on their late-night “gaming” sessions, as she seems to have affirmed her onee-san role and doesn’t seem like she’ll be giving that up anytime soon.
Progression: A complete lockdown cease-fire
Kazuki & Asuka
Our genki soccer chick is getting some major playing time this episode, and she uses it well to flaunt not only her athletic gifts, but her total domination over the weakling known as Kazuki. The two appear to have some history, particularly involving their relative abilities at soccer, but it seems to run deeper than that. How deep? Kazuki has too much else on his mind to remember…
Progression: Until someone drops the bomb, this one isn’t going anywhere
The Imouto Duo
They still seem to be riding that wave of “new friendship” where you’re so happy you made a new friend that’s just like you. Wait until a rift happens! Wait until their love interests overlap! Wait until the blue frog shows up! Well, all three of which will probably never happen – the only clue we really have of anything happening to this plotline is that Naru-chan is one of the girls in the intro lineup of the six girls.
Progression: It’s all going buddy-buddy for now, but if the OP is any indication…
Kai & Mao
Our resident a-hole walks in on Mao cleaning up the millions of love letters that have fallen out of her shoe locker, and offers his stoic apathy for support. And he kinda catches her as she’s wobbling off-balance from not sleeping enough. Then he picks up her bag and takes her to the nurse’s office! Douchebag. Not to mention he asks her out on a date in the last scene – and she accepts!
Progression: No physical action going on here (yet), but this is the only relationship that’s actually moving at a “natural” pace
Kazuki & Eriko
You remember that first girl you ever touched, or the first one who showed half a wink of interest in you? And you couldn’t take your eyes off her in school, couldn’t stop thinking about her, etc. It’s like, you don’t even know her, but some little event triggered off a whole cascade of emotions resembling a crush. I’m sure most of us have experienced something like that, except it was probably around the fifth or sixth grade. How old is Kazuki? Not to mention Eriko probably has the maturity level of a girl much older (or at least tries to), so we’re essentially dealing with a relationship where the guy is obsessing over a girl who not only has an IQ twice as high as his, but also a mental age twice as high as his. She’s clearly mad at him in her own apathetic way, which likely makes her the hardest egg to crack of all the characters in this show, but we all know it’s just a matter of time
Progression: In all seriousness, this is kinda going like the thing between Clannad’s Tomoyo and that blonde guy. Which is to say, nothing will ever happen until he goes completely emo and completely gives in to her.
Other things to watch out for in this ep? Asuka meets the imouto duo, and Mao meets Eriko. Oh, there’s also Kawasumi Ayako sensei as well as Mitsuki (classmate, voiced by Noto Mamiko) getting brushed off by Eriko. She is cooolllddddd.
I don’t really care anymore, this show is way too generic and requires me to completely suspend all notion of expectation and common sense to appreciate it. Which I don’t have a problem with, it’s just that normally that attitude is exclusive to shows like Ninomiya-kun which is brainless fun for twenty minutes, not Kimikiss, with a pedigree like H&C and Nodame. It’s like the art style and character designs just don’t fit the depth of the show and its characters.
And then there’s the belief that because this show has TWO male leads, that somehow absolves it from being a harem show. Well, it’s definitely not a traditional harem, and not every girl is after the guy(s)’ nuts, but believe it when I say these girls are complete cookie cutter mashups of the tried and true formula of female character dynamics in a traditional harem. It’s a bit different in that all the storylines seem to be progressing at once (in contrast to the sequential progression of each character in traditional harems), but the almost complete independence each relationship has with each other is astounding. With all the different things going on, you’d think their feeble minds and hearts would explode.
But in the end, it’s not THAT bad and ultimately, it’s all a good way of getting your romance fill of the season. I was looking for something to replace the void left by Nodame, but instead I got an upscale version of SHUFFLE. No, I can’t even say that, as shuffle knew exactly what it was and took every necessary means to accomplish what it set out to do (hot characters, above-average plot), but I’m not sure Kimikiss really has a set identity yet. The writing is just too weak for it to make any sort of impression. Four episodes in, I expect some real meat!
But obviously my expectations are misplaced, so I guess I’ll just have to shift them to where they’re obviously supposed to go.
Kimikiss is the best looking, probably the most serious harem anime ever! The drama isn’t cheapened by fanservice, the characters don’t throw themselves at the male leads’ feet (wait, there’s more than one?!), and the level of depth is much greater here than we’ve seen in any other harem! Each relationship takes on a different feeling and a different pace to give each a unique and substantial feel!