I hesitated to write this post, simply because I still don’t know if I’m committing to Nyan Koi. I figured it was the default show I’d follow. It’s certainly lived up to expectations so far. But now I’m sort of waffling between this and Sora no Otoshimono, simply because of the equally insane, stupid, brilliant and hilarious flying pantsu from episode two. However, for now I’m sticking with writing about Nyan Koi, just because there seems to be more of a story at this point, whereas with SNO, I’d just be posting screenshots and pointing and laughing. But if Sora no Otoshimono’s third episode is as ridiculously genius, who knows, maybe I’ll start writing about it too, or pick it up in place of Nyan Koi (when the heck are they going to introduce the blue, tsundere angel!?).
A couple episodes in, I feel confident in saying that Nyan Koi is more or less Seto no Hanayome’s spiritual successor. I doubt it’ll ever reach SNH’s level of hilarity and epicness, but I like where it’s going so far. As jubbz has pointed out, Junpei does look a lot like Touma from Index. And when Junpei’s complaining about how unlucky he is, he’s almost a dead ringer. The difference between Junpei and Touma is that Junpei’s reactions to his situations are hilarious (and pretty realistic), whereas I wanted to run Touma over with an 18-wheeler and wire his jaw shut. I thought the visual gag of Junpei arguing with the cats, then running off with them following him was unusually funny, just because of how serious they played it. Junpei later finds out that he’d pass the curse along and doom himself even more quickly, if he tells anyone about it. Which leads to an excellent Lelouch moment for Tama, who apparently is not a big fan of his cosplaying monk owner. Hearing Lelouch’s voice come from a cat is too funny. I definitely need more of that.
In addition to the Touma visual similarities, I think Junpei has a little bit of Makawa Kai in him. Unfortunately, his Romeo shtick is going way over saucer eyed Mizuno’s head. I should find her eyes to be grotesque, but for whatever reason, I the bigger and rounder they get, the more cuter I think they are. As long as she doesn’t cross the goldfish line, I’m sticking with her.
A mamba is a snake, a manba is a subtype of a ganguro. The romanization guidelines for the m and n sounds are a little loose, but I always prefer the n, even when it usually makes an m sound (e.g., senpai vs. sempai). Anyway, chalk this one up as something I learned from this episode. There’s a whole section on manbas and yamanbas (apparently an extreme version of manbas) on Wikipedia. Fascinating stuff. And a unique character style that I’ve never seen before. But what’s under the pounds of makeup and ridiculous wigs? Take a guess. That’s right, your tsundere, childhood friend! Although her tsundere qualifications are still in question, Sumiyoshi turned out to be a lot different, in more ways than one, than I expected.
Junpei’s argument with his former childhood friend is cut short when he notices that Tama and co. have invaded his final refuge: the school. And not only that, they’ve got a mission for him. There’s a cat, who’s being evicted from the school. Junpei’s mission? Kill the principal. Oh wait, whoops, wrong mission. Actually, it’s just to thank the person and say "I love you" to the person who’s been taking care of the cute neko while she’s been slumming it at school. Now what kind of person would take care of a cat? I like Junpei’s calculating mind. Serious about taking care of cats + kind and sweet smelling + Junpei’s age = mature megane type or Pure class rep type. I’d definitely go with the pre class rep type. But in reality? More like the heavy makeup, fake hair type. And things take a turn for the worse for Junpei, when Sumiyoshi walks in on him talking to the cats like a damn fool. Anybody know what that niconico text says?
For Sumiyoshi’s silence, Junpei agrees to become her slave. We get a little Sumiyoshi x Junpei flashback. They were close friends as kids, until one day Junpei gives away a stuffed cat that Sumiyoshi had made for him (or so she thinks). As a result of this, they grew apart in middle school, until they became downright antagonistic in high school. However, like all childhood friend, tsundere types, it’s clear that Sumiyoshi still holds a little flame in her heart for Junpei.
Junpei also reminds me a little bit of Nagasumi from Seto no Hanayome. And the Sumiyoshi chase scene reminded me of the epic Gozaburo and Luna Papa chase scenes. But before, getting dumped on with water, which leads to the chase scene, we get a nice heart to heart between Sumiyoshi and Junpei and a surprising amount of depth into Sumiyoshi, including why she decided to go with this extreme manba look, and her memories of Junpei giving away the stuffed cat.
With her makeup in shambles, Sumiyoshi hides her face from Junpei and by fortune runs into Mizuno on the stairwell. Interestingly, Sumiyoshi’s extreme fashion choices doesn’t seem to have hurt her ability to make friends. Or maybe Mizuno’s the type to BE FRIENDLY with everyone. Mizuno may be a little socially clueless, but she does a great job cleaning up Sumiyoshi and preparing her for her coming out party… as a maid. Super shock! She even has a fang! Now that’s the busty brunette I remember seeing in all the pre-season artwork!
After school, Junpei runs into Sumiyoshi again, and lets her know that the cat is gone, but is thankful that she watched over her (or him). Junpei also lets Sumiyoshi know that he didn’t give the cat away and was just showing it off. And in the end, all that gets Junpei is another furry housemate.
All in all, another good episode of Nyan Koi. They introduced a new character and did a real good job of filling out her character as a bold girl who uses a strong independent streak (and a wild mask) to try to cover over her vulnerabilities. Actually, they did a better job of developing Sumiyoshi, then they did with Mizuno in the first episode. What’s up for next week? An ecchi mail woman? Whoa, another unexpected character type.