Minami-ke Okaeri 01 (YES! YES! YES!)

Minami-ke Okaeri 01
みなみけ おかえり Episode 01

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Minami-ke Okaeri 01Haruka and Chiaki are already in their kimonos for the hatsumode (the visit to the shrine on New Years) but Kana is still sleeping. However, when Kana notices the time, she panics and is up. Arriving at the shrine, they meet Uchida, who’s been busy buying food and stuff from the different stalls set up at the shrine. After the customary prayer to the gods is completed at the shrine, it is time to get their fortunes. Chiaki gets one for good luck and a love fortune promising a good encounter. Chiaki’s fortune is read by Uchida, who decides to get a fortune but has to borrow ¥100 from Kana to do so. Uchida’s fortune is also good and a love fortune telling her that her awaited person will come. Hosaka is next and buys his own fortune.

Minami-ke Okaeri 01Back at the Minami apartment, Uchida is giddy over her love fortune, which annoys Chiaki somewhat. Kana and Chiaki give Uchida grief about her “prince” being fictitious. Uchida says this man exists and wants the two of them to stop bringing her down when her fortune was so good. As Chiaki gets under to kotatsu, Kana asks if Uchida’s love will come now. So, Uchida assumes the seiza and waits, sure that her intended love will Minami-ke Okaeri 01come. Kana tells Uchida that the first person through the door will be her intended, since God chooses. This bothers Uchida a bit but the doorbell rings, meaning her intended is here. It turns out to be Fujioka-kun, which has Uchida all flustered. Chiaki grabs him and gets him down so she can sit on his lap. Chiaki reminds Uchida that she needs to pay Kana back for the fortune and Uchida begins to think her luck won’t be so good. For Chiaki, everything is about money, not love.

Minami-ke Okaeri 01Chiaki is explaining the Cup Yakisoba Phenomenom to Touma by saying that when one wants to eat yakisoba, they don’t eat Cup Yakisoba, not that Cup Yakisoba is bad, but it is a different food from real yakisoba. Chiaki expands this explaination to her teddy bear and a real bear, and the difference in talking to a person and talking to a teddy bear, as the visiting Takeru is doing, lamenting over his girlfriend. When Haruka arrives with Kana, Haruka is able to cheer Takeru up with what she says is new tea, but Kana points out that it is old tea. Thus, Touma and Chiaki have seen the Cup Yakisoba Phenomenom in action.

Minami-ke Okaeri 01Chiaki is in the nurses office when nurse Kumada-sensei says she’ll be doing Chiaki’s home visit. Chiaki isn’t thrilled with this and arriving home, Haruka states that Takeru would be best to handle the visit, which he’s more than happy to do. When Kumada-sensei arrives, she and Takeru hit it off so well, Chiaki has to ask Kana what is going on. Kana says this visit by Kumada-sensei is actually an omiai — a marriage meeting. Fujioka arrives and he hits it off well with Kumada-sensei. Kana’s response is the same — omiai. Chiaki has had enough and demands Kumada-sensei do what she came for — discuss Chiaki’s grades. Instead, she came to discuss Chiaki’s weight, worried that Chiaki isn’t eating enough.

Minami-ke Okaeri 01Chiaki can’t find Fujioka the Bear but Takeru has a method for finding lost items. He takes a mechanical pencil and setting it on top of the kotatsu on it’s end, he lets it fall. Haruka, Kana, and Chiaki see it points to the kitchen. The skeptical Chiaki decides to see if Fujioka Teddy Bear is there. Spying a large pot on the stove, she looks and sure enough, there’s the teddy bear. Chiaki returns and attacks Kana for pulling such a Minami-ke Okaeri 01prank. Haruka has a lost item too, so Takeru does his pencil trick again. It points to Kana, so when Haruka confronts Kana about an expensive ice cream missing, sure enough, Kana had consumed it. Chiaki wants to know the trick but Takeru swears there is none. Kana decides to test him by asking him to use this to point to her future husband. Takeru lets the pencil go, but it doesn’t fall. Kana gets annoyed and knocks it over so that it points in the direction of the front door. The doorbell rings and Fujioka is there, having gone out to get some food for everyone. He accidentally went up to the roof before coming to the right floor where the Minami apartment is. Chiaki and Haruka blush and smile at the oblivious couple while Takeru shows a bit of annoyance at Fujioka.

Back at the shrine, Hosaka tries for the 180th time to get a good fortune and fails. However, he’s not going to let that stop him from going after Haruka.

Thoughts/Review:

Minami-ke Okaeri 01THE BLACK-SAN CHARACTERS ARE GONE! YES! YES! YES!

Next, the shorts are back. Yeah, buddy! I really do think the short format works best for this series. So two pluses right out of the starting gate.

Ah! The Minami brothers are in the OP, suggesting they will be in the series. That’s three!

Minami-ke Okaeri 01Increased levels of fun and even comedy?

Oh my! I do believe we have a winner here, y’all! WHEW!

No “bakayarou” from Chiaki, but she was back to her old self which is most excellent.

The Cup Yakisoba short was a bit bizarre but still fun. All of the shorts were fun but I have to say that the funny short was Minami-ke Okaeri 01the pencil trick one. I laughed at the actual discovery of the bear in the pot because I honestly thought it wouldn’t be there. Kana getting busted and Haruka getting cross made me laugh. It was both funny and touching to see Fujioka being “revealed” to be Kana’s future husband. I like the idea of that somehow. ^_^

On the negative side, the character designs are a bit off to me and not as attractive-seeming, but that may be from having seeing Minami-ke Okawari recently. I noticed a couple of bad animation moments.

Minami-ke Okaeri 01While this episode didn’t have the bang that Minami-ke got off too, it was still VERY enjoyable for me. If this is the way the series continues, then asread deserves a lot of credit for realizing their attempts to be different were a failure and correcting their mistakes. I can’t wait to see episode 2 now. ^_^

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