Back to the Vaults 2008 Christmas Special — "Ai Yori Aoshi ~Enishi~ Miyuki"

Ai Yori Aoshi ~Enishi~ Deep Snow
Ai Yori Aoshi ~Enishi~ Beautiful Snow
藍より青し ~縁~ 深雪

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Ai Yori Aoshi ~Enishi~ Beautiful SnowKaoru is returning home from his part-time job to pay for school when he sees classmate Tina Foster on the street. He turns down her offer to have dinner, citing other things he has to do. As he walks, a snowflake pendant falls on his head. He takes it, grabs something cheap at the convenience store, then goes home exhausted and falls asleep on his futon. He awakens a bit later to discover a cute girl dressed in a Santa outfit and calling herself Santa Clause. When Kaoru sees how she got in and out of his place, he freaks and runs out the door, falling down the stairs only to be caught by a floating Santa-san.

Ai Yori Aoshi ~Enishi~ Beautiful SnowReturning to his apartment, she explains that she accidentally dropped the pendant and she’ll need it to return home. She wishes to properly thank him for returning the pendant and reading his thoughts, she sees that his wish is to spend Christmas with someone like her. This is the first time someone has made such a wish and she’s a bit flustered by it, but agrees to it. Kaoru has a problem addressing her as “Santa” so she tells him he can call her anything. He settles on “Aoi-chan,” and tells Santa-Aoi that this is the name of a girl he knew for a short time as a child but hasn’t seen since. Santa-Aoi decides to give Kaoru some good dreams for the night but is stunned when she sees him crying in his sleep, not realizing that his dream about having Christmas cake with his mother is the cause.

Ai Yori Aoshi ~Enishi~ Beautiful SnowThe next morning, Santa-Aoi-chan makes breakfast — turkey and Christmas cake. Soon, they are at a theme park where Kaoru notices that no one seems to notice Santa-Aoi. She replies that it is because they don’t believe in her. The two spend the entire day at the park doing all sorts of things like skating, eating, and enjoying the rides, while also running into Chika-chan, Taeko, Mayu, and Miyabi-san. When midnight comes, the wish comes to an end an Santa-Aoi must go. She spreads dreams throughout the world, at which she understands why Kaoru cried during his dream. Before she leaves, she wishes he would meet the girl of his dreams, then kisses Kaoru on the lips and is gone. The next morning, Kaoru thinks things are a dream, except there’s a Christmas cake showing the whole thing really happened.

Thoughts/Review:

Since this special is only 15-minutes long, I figured I’d just use my traditional episode format.

Ai Yori Aoshi ~Enishi~ Beautiful SnowThis special came from chapters 43 and 44 of the manga (volume 5), which I didn’t know when I first watched this years ago, not having read the manga at that point. This episode doesn’t really make this clear, but the manga states that these events happened shortly before Aoi and Kaoru were reunited at the beginning of the series. With that little element added, it makes for a nice little twist on things. It shows that Kaoru always had Aoi-chan in the back of his mind at least and Santa-san granting Kaoru’s secret wish when the real Aoi came to find him sometime later is pretty sweet.

Ai Yori Aoshi ~Enishi~ Beautiful SnowThe anime managed to get cameos in for all the girls, even though that is quite a stretch. I guess that’s why the anime didn’t bother trying to actually say, “this happened just before Ai Yori Aoshi episode 1” because these girls could not have all had cameos then. They didn’t appear in the source manga. Still, from a fun perspective, it is nice seeing them all and at least the anime folks had sense enough to give Tina the short hairstyle she had when she and Kaoru were attending class at the same time before she took off for a time.

Ai Yori Aoshi ~Enishi~ Beautiful SnowFor fans of either the Ai Yori Aoshi manga or the anime, it is just nice seeing Aoi and Kaoru together at Christmas (and as an aside, it is funny hearing Santa-Aoi-chan address Kaoru as “Kaoru-san” rather than “Kaoru-sama” as Aoi-chan does). The way Santa-Aoi catches the falling Kaoru is a sweet moment as is the kiss they share at the end. It is just good, gooey stuff for fans of the franchise and for those who just love a sweet, wholesome romance, especially at Christmas.

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2 Responses to “Back to the Vaults 2008 Christmas Special — "Ai Yori Aoshi ~Enishi~ Miyuki"”

  1. Blogima says:

    I simply LOVE this special! Ai Yori Aoshi have a good story (well, I didn’t see all the episodes, just ones ^^”).

    Great job, Astro. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year for You!

  2. AstroNerdBoy says:

    The first series is the best, but the 2nd has good stuff too, including this omake for the DVD. ^_^

    Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to you too! ^_^

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