It wasn’t just a little – チョットジャナクッテ
I didn’t know how much I’ve missed Love Stage!! and the entire fluffiness of Summer until I watched this OVA. This was just so sweet, adorable and happifying that I’m glad I started my week with it ^^
This OVA covers the chapter where Ryouma and Izumi goes to the amusement park with Shougo and Rei. After the first time they did it, Izumi had been trying to avoid being alone with Ryouma because the first time hurt like hell and not even Izumi’s feelings for Ryouma could make him embrace the pain. He craftily gets Shougo and Rei to tag along (he must have gotten that scheming ability from mama Rei, I’m telling you) on his date with Ryoma. Bring the ultra protective brother he is, Shougo stuck to Ryouma like glue for almost the entire day, so much so that it seemed as though they were the ones going out on the date. At last, Ryouma couldn’t take it anymore and he tried to escape from Shougo onii-san in the grand maze. After successfully unsticking Shougo from his side, Ryouma wasted no time in grabbing Izumi and attempting to get some alone time with his new little lover. Alas, becoming alone was the last thing Izumi wanted to do and he blurted out to Ryouma that “it really hurt”. Since then, Ryouma ceased contact with Izumi and the latter panicked. We have our typical “consultation about my friend” session where Izumi asked Ryouma for advice on what friend K could do to reconcile with his lover. Unsurprisingly, Rei’s advice was for friend K/Izumi to endure the pain for his lover. Despite how sound the advice sounded, their short discussion somehow led to Izumi deciding to be the seme. I loved the key and hole illustrations here, it was dramatic in some sense yet so funny. Izumi then headed over to Ryouma’s apartment and they apologised to each other, before they have make-up H. Since it has been quite a while since I read the manga, I thought I would get to see Izumi trying harder to top Ryouma but he was pushed down by Ryouma within seconds and all ends well.
The first character who just cheered me up instantly was Rei when he did his 180 change in personality when he tried to wake Izumi up. Business-like Hirakawa is good, but sado-Hirakawa is even better, especially when it comes unexpectedly and lasts for just a short while. Hirakawa is really one of the few versatile voice actors who can be placed in virtually any role and still manage to pull it off convincingly. I’m trying to think of a role which Hirakawa obviously can’t do, but I can’t think of any. Back to Rei, even though he was would get that violent when Izumi wasn’t awake at the right time, he was all motherly and caring when Izumi came out to look for him at night – awww – I just loved how he automatically asked Izumi if he wanted some hot chocolate. Such a perfect mother/wife material don’t you agree? Speaking of which, I really enjoyed the ending scene where the speculated kiss scene betwen Rei and Shougo was artfully implied. I’m glad we finally see more of their relationship in the anime; though they aren’t the focus, the Rei and Shougo couple was rather cute and it’s still a pleasure to see them being together in colours and all.
Remember who my best boyfriend of the year award went to? I’m glad I was watching this alone because I’m sure I had this stupidly dreamy look on my face when Ryouma was running though his plans for the date in his head (I absolutely loved the sparkly effect). Oh Ryouma… That was really a perfect dream date, too bad he wasn’t able to execute his plans but really, I thought his plans were just too perfect and great that it’s too good for Izumi. Also, in Izumi’s terms, wouldn’t the perfect date be attending a Lala-lulu event, going for some special anime screening, and a personal session with Saotome-sensei/ Lala-lulu’s voice actor? Nah, Ryouma, even though you’ve nailed the generic dream date, Izumi is not your normal girl here. Eguchi Takuya did a fantastic job here as usual, it has been a while since I last heard his voice and this OVA only served to remind me of how he could pull off seme-sexy and adorable with such ease. I loved his random outbursts too, especially his kya when he got over-excited over his date with Izumi.
While I’ve been feeling rather anti-Izumi during the first half of the show just because he’s making my Ryouma suffer, he was all forgiven at the moment he went all crazy fanboy for Lala Lulu. That really got me because honestly, I thought his sparkly eye reaction had something to do with Ryouma. Poor Ryouma, but Izumi was just too cute that I think that has to be my favourite scene during this OVA. Although he might not be the most likeable character at all times, I loved how honest and straightforward Izumi is. Leaving how he told Ryouma in his face that “it seriously hurt” aside, the scenes when he consulted Rei regarding “friend K” and promptly ran off after he got his answer, and when he told Ryouma about his super-seme plan. At the end of the day, he’s just an innocent and naive boy who won’t lie or hurt anyone. I’ve just listened to Yonaga Tsubasa in Orange no Kokoro, where he acted a cheery and strong-willed boy who always tried his best to stay cheerful regardless of whatever tough circumstance he was facing. Although the type of character Tsubasa can be casted for seems limited on the surface, I found that he could do lots of different personality really well. As Izumi, he was very convincing as an innocent and naive boy who is spoiled rotten by everyone around him and most of the time, I think he sounded more girly than half the girls in the world.
I noticed (and you can’t not) the not-so-subtle hints about something going on between Kuroi-kun and Saotome-sensei. It might have been something anime-only, or included in the more recent manga chapters of Love Stage!!. Why is everyone in a BL story gay? No, you don’t have to answer that, I just had to type that out.
In some sense, this OVA was perfect. There were bits and pieces of everything I liked in Love Stage!!, it felt like they just packed this episode with all my favourite things and it was just filled to the brim with happiness that I felt like we’re having Summer all over again. Oh how I miss Summer~