Anime Review: Midori Days

High school delinquent Seiji Sawamura is desperate to have a girlfriend, especially after being rejected by 20 girls as of late. He’s afraid that he will end his life with his right hand as his only companion. Apparently, that doesn’t change when one day when he wakes up and discovers that his right hand has become a girl named Midori Kasugano, who confesses that she has had a crush on him for the last three years.

______________________________________________________________

Plot:

If the plot synopsis above sounds creepy, do not panic.  The story is not as creepy as it may sound.  It would seem easy to make a story about a girl who becomes a dude’s right hand perverted and sleazy, but Midori Days take a different approach to the scenario above.  Instead of going the ecchi route, we get a touching if not humorous story about a misunderstood male student who everyone seems to be fearful of, but only because they do not understand that he is not like what he may be seen as.

While the show is part of the romance genre, I would be remiss if I did not mention that this is a harem show.  While this is a harem show, Midori Days is in some ways a bit different from most shows in the harem genre out there today.  One of the big differences from most of the harem shows out there is that unlike most male lead that show up in the harem genre.  Seji is not milquetoast and actually has a backbone.  Seji is a misunderstood delinquent who while most people assume that he fights because he enjoys to, he only fights to protect those who cannot defend themselves from others.  Seji is quite the nice person but is feared because of his fighting.  The fact that Seji has some personality, the way he does things explains why he does have several females who like him and want to be with him.  Of course, one trait Seji does share one big trait that most harem leads have and that is pretty obvious to the fact that most of the girls are in love with him.

The girls who are in Seji’s harem all fits different tropes that you would expect to find in the harem genre.  The other main character Midori fits the shy rich girl trope for the series.  When Midori is in her normal body she is extremely shy which prevents her from telling Seji her feelings or even approaching him for that matter.  This of course changes once she becomes his right hand and then she becomes much less shy with her feelings tell Seji often that she loves him.  Ayase the stern but is girly outside of school class rep who tries her hardest to get Seji to love her.  The other girl in the harem is Shiori the precocious elementary school student who Seji to be her boyfriend.  This is a bit of a change from the manga as the manga has five females after Seji but taking away two of the girls does not affect the overall story at all.

Most of the story focuses mainly on the life of Seji and Midori.  Several episodes of this show shift the focus towards the other girls who like Seji.  While these episodes can be fun at times they are however the weaker episodes of the series.  Ayase’s episode is the weakest of the series as it is clichéd on the approach but is far from unwatchable.  The last few episodes of the series shifts the focus back to Midori and Seji and gives both characters most of their development and while the ending itself is nothing we have not seen before it is not groan worthy at all and feels touching.

Art and Animation:

Produced by Studio Pierrot the overall look of the show is somewhat mixed regarding the background art and the character designs.  The background art is good and has a pretty look to it for a 2004 produced show.  The character designs are a different story.  None of the characters design wise really stand out overall.  This is not the case however of one face for all the females in the show.  They are distinct from one another but nobody is really the standout in terms of design.

There is some fanservice present in Midori Days and is done in a tasteful and enjoyable way that does not take away from the show at all.  The fanservice present is mostly exposed breasts and the occasionally panty shot which are done in a natural way that is not jarring or seem out of place.

Music and Audio:

The music as a whole is unimpressive.  The OP is pretty much forgettable and so most of the music in the series.  The ED is an Adult Contemporary piece that is one of the better pieces of music in the series.

Both the English dub and the original Japanese audio track are good and for the most part the English dub is close in terms of performance to the original Japanese seiyū.  Drew Aaron give Seji his English voice and does a great job with his role.  He does not over enunciate his words like some might for trying to do a delinquent role.  Drew is not quite at the same level as Kishô Taniyama who gives Seji his voice in Japanese but both VA’s do their respect jobs well.  The surprise of the English dub is Kether Fernandez who voices Midori.  The surprise is that this was Kether’s second role in being a VA and does an equal job with Mai Nakahara who gives Midori her voice in Japanese.  The rest of the English dub is not that bad, but some of the secondary voices in the earlier episodes are bad but do progress and become better in the later half.  The Japanese dub is great all around featuring some veteran seiyū such as Yukari Tamura, Hirofumi Nojima, and Reiko Takagi.

Final Thoughts:

Midori Days is a harem show unlike most others but in some ways is similar to others in the genre.  It does a lot to separate itself amongst a genre that is packed to the brim with shows that do little to separate themselves amongst the other in the genre.  While there are a few issues here and there mostly with the music and character designs, Midori Days is a show that is greater as a whole than the sum of its parts.

Score: 3/5

Pros: Most of the English dub, male lead is a bit different than your typical harem lead, good character development with main cast and some of the

Cons: Unimpressive music, unremarkable character designs, some of the middle episodes are weaker than other episodes.

Midori Days is available from Rightstuf

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s