It makes me a very sad person when Minami-ke is disappointing. I’ve never quite watched a show with such fluctuating quality before, but it seems that Asread are sinking back into what they were doing with Okawari; making whole episodes out of the boring skits that just go for too long. It wasnt terrible, at least, and I did crack a smile here and there. There just isnt an awful lot to write about when the episode doesnt really do an awful lot.
The first skit takes up the whole first half of the episode, which is far too long. It centered mainly on Chiaki’s hatred of swimming pools, and how she didnt want to help her friends clean the pool because it meant that the day the pool opened would come sooner. Chiaki’s spoilt-princess-deadpan-stubborness is still as cute as ever, at least.
Due to the incredible heat, Chiaki eventuallyhas a change of heart and realizes that if she wants to be good at swimming, she must become one with water. She takes this one step further and decides that she ought to try and become as close to water as possible by increasing the percentage of water in her body. This was definitley the highlight of the entire episode, and was definitley amusing, as Chiaki tries to raise her body-water percentage to at least 80% by binge-drinking water, but soon finds it impossible, and what’s worse, she ends up a little bloated.
Chiaki gets a little moritifed that she seems to have put on a bit of weight, so goes to see the school nurse (who I just realized we have never actually seen before, at least I dont remember her) after having another of her ‘ingenius’ Chiaki ideas. She puts a bandage on her finger to distract attention from her stomach, despite the fact that I personally couldnt see much of a difference in it. I laughed at this, too, but it was sadly the heighest point of the episode.
However her little plan backfires, because her friends get worried about her ‘injured’ finger and demand that she sit out of the pool in case she hurts herself. Chiaki, who had actually wanted to go in the pool for once, was quite upset, because she had wanted to test out her new and improved 71% water body. Sitting in the sun she started to sweat and cry and thus realized she had wasted some of the water in her body and it was probably at 69%. The way she calculates these things with such stoic seriousness never fails to get a laugh from me.
It was a cute skit, but it just went for too long. The next one is also too long, and not half as interesting. It’s at Kana’s school, which seems to be Asread’s weakness. Parts at Kana’s school were funny in the original Minami-ke but in Okawari and it seems now Okaeri, they’re the most boring segments. Which is ironic as Kana is one of the funniest characters – she’s just alot funnier when she’s with her sisters. The whole first half centered on Fujioka and Riko and eventually Reiko trying to drop hints to Kana to invite Fujioka along to the pool, because they were too embarassed to ask outright. An amusing idea, but to drag it on for so long? Kana’s an idiot who cant take a hint, we get it already. We got that 2 seasons ago.
Somehow or other, although we dont get to see how, Kana finaly seemed to get it and they were invited along. We only get to see the group at the pool briefly, however Kana seems deeply pissed off about something, particularly at Fujioka. We dont get to learn what this is until a little later when they are back at home and Touma has come to visit again.
It turns out that Kana wanted to play tag in the pool and so made Fujioka ‘it’. However, Fujioka, out of his own politeness, believed it just wasnt right to touch a girl in the pool, and such is the burden of playing tag with girls. And thus, he wouldnt play. Around the table at home, Touma tries to get him to overcome this and so there is a rather amusing little game of tag around the table in which nobody actually moves and merely touches the person next to them in turn. It was pretty ridiculous so I did smile from this, so I’d say it was the second best moment of this episode. The joke beneath it all was the fact that Fujioka is still the only one that doesnt know Touma is actually a girl, and ends up touching her inappropriately without even knowing. He then ends up actually chasing her for real, to her horror. What would have made this segment more amusing, however, would be Mako-chan, because then both reverse-traps could create even more gender-confusion.
In all, the episode was a pretty dull entry for Minami-ke. There’s certainly been alot worse by Asread, but its just disheartening to see the third ‘meh’ episode in a row after the first two of Okaeri were so brilliant. The general law of Minami-ke is that if Hosaka isnt going to be in an episode, the Hosaka-less segments must be hilarious enough to make up for it; and this episode with the exception of Chiaki’s goal of becoming one with water failed in that regard. It gets points for the Chiaki segment, but minus-points for dragging it on too long, and points for the game of tag, but minus points for surrounding it in mediocrity when it could have done better things, like going to Haruka’s school. Then we could have at least seen Hosaka and the new girl Hitomi. Plus, is there really a need for another pool-centered episode? It feels like we’ve had too many of those, and judging by the next episode preview, there’s a beach one next. It was really hard to judge this episode, but here’s hoping episode 6 will be an improvement because in the end out of 5 it gets only,