After finishing my 3th rewatch 4 days ago, I decided to write my first review about Mikakunin de Shinkoukei. As one of the first animes I watched in 2015, it had a special impact on me, especially with its nice comedy, adorable characters and moe factor. I hope you will enjoy my review. (≧▽≦)
Story and Plot:
Mikakunin de Shinkoukei is basically the story of a girl called Kobeni, who on her sixteenth birthday is suddenly told that she is engaged to the mysterious boy, Hakuya. Very creative, right? Well, for half of the show fits standard fare in terms of a Slice of Life and rom-com with a lot of moe. The latter half is where the show begins to peak when we learn the Mitsumines are not ordinary folk living on mountains and the connection with Kobeni is linked to a long forgotten accident, leading to the reason behind this engagement. Even if this doesn’t change the overall situations in episodes in my eyes, it is a factor which makes the story a little bit more interesting and different from other shows. The idea of including non-human characters in a slice of life anime might sound weird, even if it doesn’t’ change main process of the anime. I personally still think Mikakunin de Shinkoukei can be only defined as a slice of life, however however fantasyor something similar could’ve been an added genre.
One of the weakest points of Mikakunin de Shinkoukei is some unconnected scenes one after another. In my opinion the main reason of it is manga, which consist of different and short chapters with simple designed panels. Besides the scenes with another, almost all scenes are well connected in their own plots. It wouldn’t be wrong to say Mikakunin de Shinkoukei is an episodic anime, however it doesn’t have a specific storyline either. The main idea of the whole show is making the characters as cute and funny as possible, which the anime succeeds in general. Only 12th episode has a different process than the others as a dramatic episode, which is not a problem for me. I even enjoyed watching such a nice episode.
Characters and Relationships:
As the very main character we have Kobeni. I personally think she is like an average character who we can see in every slice of life + rom-com anime. Well, I can’t really say I love Kobeni that much, since she is unnecessarily emotional and overreacting at some scenes. However, she has some nice characteristics that cause some funny scenes in addition, so also I can’t say she is an unqualified main character. For me the expression “normal” matches her with every single feature of her. At the end I can just respect her housework skills and big boobs.
In a slice of life anime which could be defined specifically as a “Cute Girls Doing Cute Things” (CGDCT) anime, there must be a character who brings moe wherever she goes. For that role we have Mashiro, our little sister-in-law. With every action she does, she is always so adorable. It makes totally sense that she is the main target of Benio with her cute characteristic and sister-like behaviors. It is also cute that she tries to act mature, but every time she tries to be older than her age, she fails. Together with her interest on UMAs, Mashiro is a character that every moe fan would love for sure.
Benio is my personal favorite character in Mikakunin de Shinkuokei. I heard from a lot of people that they find her annoying or repellent, but still nobody can ignore the fact that she is the main source of the whole comedy in this anime. In my opinion, without Benio, Mikakunin de Shinkoukei would be simple and boring. Even though her sister-complex might seem too much at some cases, I think that this just makes Benio a better character.
I actually don’t have much to say about Hakuya. He barely speaks during the episodes and he doesn’t heve a proper personality or character development. While rewatching the show, I realized again that his most important role is to be there and keep existing. However, at some points I think that he fits the main idea of anime which is made to be a slice of life.
Except that 4 main characters, Mikakunin de Shinkoukei includes 6 more supporting characters in total. Even though they are not totally awesome designed, all of them has an equal personality at a level worthy for their role.
In addition to single characteristics, the most important equality of Mikakunin de Shinkoukei is the great combined relationships between characters. First of all, there is a romantic relationship between Kobeni and Hakuya, which takes the biggest attention on audience’s eyes. Because of Hakuya’s weak personality in general, their relationship can’t go far away from a single hug, however in the following volumes of manga, these two characters become a little bit closer than in the anime. In following, an another remarkable point is the relationship of Benio with all sister-like characters in anime. Not only in Kobeni, but her interest in Mashiro is enough to make me enjoy this show. Unlike Kobeni, Masiro finds that huge attention that benio gives her really annoying and tries to put her off. This annoyed expressions of Mashiro made me smile or laugh a lot of times. In addition we have two powerful friendship situations between Kobeni and Mayura , Benio and Nadeshiko. Both of the friends of this main characters can be defined as calm similarly, even though Nadeshiko’s personality is much serious than Mayura’s. I personally like Nadeshiko more, with especially the first OVA. Lastly there is the relationship between Mashiro and Setsuna, which I find kind of unnecessary. The reason that Mashiro annoys Benio, who Setsuna adores, makes her hate Mashiro, not in a malicious but in a funny way.
Animation and Songs:
I want to start my paragraph with the opening and ending themes. Since I am not that into high pitched voices and energetic music, I would honestly say both songs don’t fit my music taste. The opening of anime, Tomadoi→Recipe (とまどい→レシピ), is actually kind of nice, especially the beginning part makes me addicted to the song a little bit. Unfortunately, I don’t have the same opinion about the ending theme, Masshiro World (まっしろわーるど). It was really not for me which is pretty understandable, since I skipped the song in literally every episode. We also surprisingly have a second ending that could be defined as an insert song, too. 16-sai tte iu no wa Tokubetsu na Kanji da (16歳っていうのは特別な感じだ) by Jun Ichikawa is probably my favorite musical piece including all the other soundtracks. I still wouldn’t listen it in my free time, however, it is not a song I would skip if it was an opening theme. Oh, and we shouldn’t forget great UMA song of course.
Lastly, there are totally 9 character songs, 3 songs for every main girl (Kobeni, Mashiro and Benio) which I think are the best part of the anime for music lovers. I won’t give my opinion about all of 9 songs here, however I would like to say Kobeni and especially Benio ones are pretty charming and nice.
With vivid colors and nice character design the show is nice and smoothly animated. In complacence with other popular shows like No Game No Life (MADHOUSE), Your Lie in April (A-1 Pictures) or Noragami (BONES), I would surely say that Mikakunin de Shinkoukei has a simple and easy style. The utilization of white for highlights just makes the colors seem more staring than normal. In addition to these, after looking at some panels of manga, it is easy to say that the animators improved the art style of mangaka in a really good way. Herewith I would say that Mikakunin de Shinkoukei is wonderfully animated in its own way. Great job Doga Kobo!
Manga and OVAs:
The anime has 2 additional episodes, each lasting roughly 12 minutes.
First of them is Mikakunin de Shinkoukei: Mite. Are ga Watashitachi no Tomatteiru Ryokan yo., released at 19th of March 2014. I especially love the first part of this episode which deals with the childhood memories of Kobeni with her sister Benio and Benio’s best friend Nadeshiko. The other part of the episode represents another memory but memory of Mashiro and Hakuya this time. Both parts don’t take part in original manga, which means actually, first OVA of Mikakunin de Shinkoukei is a filler-like episode
Second OVA, Mikakunin de Shinkoukei: Kamo Nikutte Midori-ppoi Aji ga suru no ne., includes the special edition of the 5th manga volume, and explains the experiences of 5 characters in an onsen trip in a thermal hotel. Mashiro’s interest in UMAs makes this episode totally funny and watchable.
Mikakunin de Shinkoukei is written and drawn by Cherry Arai if the source of the anime with the same name. I read the manga only until the end of the last episode of the anime and with everything I experienced while reading it I would honestly say that the manga is not much qualified like anime. Despite the fact that the art style is poor, all pages and panels seem so simple and plain that it makes the reader bored after a few chapters. In my opinion if you watched the anime, the manga is inadequate for an enjoyable reading.
To sum up, I want to start with writing all positive and negative aspects of Mikakunin de Shinkoukei:
- +Some great characters with well thought relationships
- +Impressive art style
- +Additional character songs
- +Nice OVAs
- +Better than manga for sure
- -Weak main lead
- -Unconnected storyline at some points
- -Average ending theme
- -Inadequate manga for people, who want to know what happens after anime
In conclusion Mikakunin de Shinkoukei is an enjoyable anime with cute characters in my eyes.
Thanks for reading my first review to the end! Have a great day!