Suzuka - 1: Anticipation

Episode:1: Anticipation
Starting a new section of his life, Yamato moves from the rural area of Hiroshima to Tokyo. Walking by the sports field of his new high school the boy observes a beautiful girl practicing high jump [image1] - and immediately falls for her. Meanwhile Miho, a middle schooler girl, is eagerly awaiting her cousin at her mother Ayano's bath house [image2] that will be Yamato's new home from now on, although usually only girls are allowed to live there.
As he's not paying a rent, Yamato offers to help cleaning the bath, only to get scolded for daydreaming by Miho-chan soon after. But it's too late already - two of the female residents enter the bath, one of them completely nude (and not really the shy type)... Miho tries to save the day, Yamato ends up stumbling and falling upon the other girl [image3] - and as you'd expect, that's the very moment when the aforementioned track&field girl walks by. Being completely frustrated, Yamato goes to his new living room for the first time, mistakes the door and - inadvertantly enters the room of Suzuka the high jumper who now turns out to be the third female resident of the bath house, living next door to the boy!
When Yamato and Suzuka eat supper together with the landlord and her daughter the boy learns that Suzuka is a promising athlete scouted for the high school both will be attending together soon, and she's praised by everyone, in sharp contrast to Yamato. During conversation Yamato drops a clanger once again and Suzuka walks away, telling everyone how she hates Yamato's sloppy attitude. But after supper Miho-chan visits Suzuka [image4] and pleads for her onii-chan, asking Suzuka not to think too negatively of him...
Later this evening, Yuka and Megumi (the two girls of the bath incident) pay a surprise visit at Yamato's room, bringing along some alcohol... with all the ruckus next door, Suzuka decides to use the sauna, and under the pressure of everyone's high expectation she extends her session there, hoping to lose some more weight. At midnight both of Yamato's visitors finally are dead drunk, and he now remembers having promised to complete cleaning the bath. He's surprised to find that someone left the lights on, and then shocked to see Suzuka having fainted in the sauna [image5] whose door won't open...
Then ending of this episode [image6] is too good to spoil it here.
(2005-07-26, Devil Doll:)
Akitsuki Yamato really is an irresponsible daydreamer (albeit not to the extent of some Urashima Keitarou), all hat and no cattle. His cousin Fujikawa Miho, two years younger than the boy, is cute and caring (and Yamato-onii-chan does need assistance like hers at this stage); her mother Ayano doesn't seem to play an important role, she's just there and makes things run smoothly, being the brave single parent not unlike Minase Akiko.
Asahina Suzuka, named "Miss Perfect" by Yamato, is too good to be true at first sight - but that's what this first episode is about. My first bet for her had been Miyazawa Yukino but I soon started wondering whether Narusegawa Naru (with Naru's patented punch here replaced by snappish remarks that can hurt a boy quite as much) doesn't come closer. Time will tell.
Having a Spa-type bath as setting of the series, silly-funny-ecchi scenes are to be expected, leading into Yamato's emotional low of this episode. Saotome Yuka is even more irresponsible than Yamato, combining the characters of Konno Mitsune and Tina Foster; Matsumoto Megumi appears to be a more aggressive variant of Minazuki Taeko. Both contribute nothing to the story so far except for the "comic relief", Japanese style; I could well do without these two.
I left out the last third of the episode story in my synopsis, as I consider the development there too interesting to spoil it here. With Suzuka being the title character of the story you probably already know she didn't die...


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