Kono Naka ni Hitori, Imouto ga Iru!

Title:Kono Naka ni Hitori, Imouto ga Iru!
One of them is my little sister (literal translation)
Who is "Imouto"?
この中に1人、妹がいる! (Japanese)
Keywords: , , , , , , , , , , ,
Notables: HIDAKA Rina
SAKURAI Takahiro
Shougo Mikadono is a highly eligible bachelor who has been sent to a prestigious school partly to find a wife for himself, since this is a condition in his deceased father's last will on his inheriting the famous Mikadono corporation. There are some problems: first, word of this has already gotten around, and second one of the girls he is courting might just be a sister he never knew he had!

[TV series, 2012, 12 episodes + 1 OVA episode (numbered as "episode 13"), 23 min; picture back to front: Tendou Mana (slapstick girl, school council president, brown hair), Sagara Mei (senpai, café owner, grey hair), Kunitachi Rinka (aristocratic kouhai, school council vice president, blonde hair), Kannagi Miyabi (tsundere brat, classmate, red hair), Tsuruma Konoe (level-headed girl, class rep, black hair)]

1:04min Series PV - YouTube Video
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Watch 8 7 6 7 8 9 Devil Doll [series:2593#752]
[Score: 72% = maximum "Watch+"]
An aggressive harem comedy with heavy focus on ecchi elements such as frontal nudity and breasts, suffering from shallow characters with occasionally shameless behavior. Thus the "secret younger sister" plot, together with an interesting male lead who has to stand his ground against a conspiracy within his own future company, is the much more interesting layer with lots of story twists and hidden agendas - is there anybody who can be trusted? This scheming and machination element alone made this series worth watching for me as a mystery show following the given clues, whereas the romance component failed to convince me.
Yes, a fanboy's wildest dream. Shougo's mother even put her son into his own apartment to avoid any "restrictions" that would apply to the school dorm, so he's free to do with these girls whatever he likes to. Then again, this show doesn't rely on aliens or goddesses for the harem contenders: The girls do have a plausible goal, with Shougo being the well-known Mikadono heir and his wealth being at stake for his future bride. And I wouldn't be surprised if his mother also leaked some information to the girls at school to speed up the process...

The "secret younger sister" theme adds an interesting twist to this show: Konoe, the cute and playful girl with a "fated" head start is so obviously the favorite that any other girl will have a hard time to even credibly compete with her; therefore she would be the perfect candidate for the "imouto" and thus not being eligible, in order to not make the whole competition boring. But if she were out then the winner might well be a disappointment for the audience - so how will they make this play out? And there's one problem with this subplot: If the sister is so afraid of becoming known to the public, then why contact Shougo in the first place?

Technical attributes are standard fare, with the girls' faces being childishly cute for marriage candidates, even more so given their aggressive behavior (significantly more than in Ichigo 100% TV). The ecchi level is pretty high, with T&A fan-service and Konoe playing with her boobs in the first episode already. Thus any rating above "Watch" is rather unlikely right from the start. And still, Konoe alone might have been sufficient for watching this show as she's neither a denial queen nor a tsundere or stupid or a damsel in distress; unfortunately she's not much of a character either. Miyabi, on the other hand, has a long way to go to at least become a likable character, not to mention a real contender. But in the end, it's the hidden agenda part that saves the day, regardless how shallow the girls remain. And it's Shougo who finally understands what's going on and takes the initiative, thus showing the best character growth within this series.

  • Episode 01: (0-) Shougo is fair game right from the start, with two girls attempting to kiss him already. The cliffhanger makes me wonder: Why would they let that nice idea go to waste at this early stage already?
  • Episode 02: (0+) Four ecchi scenes (all including breasts, including frontal nudity), but otherwise a decent episode, introducing three more girls and giving Miyabi something to think about. And Shougo is quite the ladies' man, unlike those many clueless wimps in harem anime. "Mr. X" was another nice add-on, and it's good to see they do know about the existence of DNA tests, i. e. they're not all stupid.
  • Episode 03: (-) An orgy of embarrassment due to a simple unresolved misunderstanding, causing two slutty girls to try and "cure" Shougo. The surprising twist at the end doesn't save this episode as it's based on a mere assumption.
  • Episode 04: (++) A huge step forward in terms of both story and character development for two lead girls, answering significant questions and posing new ones at the same time. And yes, the "KyoAsu IMT-270" cellphone does play a core role in this story, even more so now that we know who constructed it - there's still trouble ahead for its owner.
  • Episode 05: (0+) This one had a slow start (why doesn't Shougo just switch off his cellphone at night?) but the second half had us return to another character's story and one more clue from the cellphone department.
  • Episode 06: (0-) Similar to the previous one but much weaker, with a strange focus on a side story and an unconvincing explanation by the culprit. And shouldn't Shougo start asking his lead girls for voluntary DNA test samples by now, and then focus on the "cleared" ones?
  • Episode 07: (0-) The first DNA sample, at long last. The fourth girl's arc begins but her agenda appears weird: If she wants to remain unknown then why announce her existence to the public? And her access to that special cellphone was all too random. Downgrade for "Characters" due to no progress on the "girlfriend frontier".
  • Episode 08: (0) The fourth girl's agenda was a nice twist, and her explanation was plausible. The positive aspects were outweighed by fan-service elements and a growing harem of one-dimensional girls though.
  • Episode 09: (0-) A new girl moving in next door to Shougo's apartment, a new story twist, and the first DNA test results. Despite the shallow characters, the "sister mystery" still holds my interest.
  • Episode 10: (0+) The first contender places her final bid. But it's much more exciting to see how close to Shougo the enemy forces have placed their agents already, as not even the DNA test result may be trustworthy now.
  • Episode 11: (+) More evil machinations, finally a date with an unexpected girl, and the second baddie being clearly identified, so almost no time for ecchi filler material. Will one episode suffice for answering those many open questions?
  • Episode 12: (++) Walls of text, but a plausible and detailed explanation about what was going on in this series and who had which hidden agenda. Don't expect a harem winner though.
  • Episode 13 OVA: (0) A dating competition. Starting with perverted delusions of Shougo, only the last contender understands what this event is actually about, learning from the previous mistakes of her rivals.

Last updated Tuesday, June 11 2013. Created Monday, May 27 2013.
Unevaluated Stretch [series:2593#628]
(One episode watched):

Ah yes, the fanboy's wildest dream come true: sexy girls are throwing themselves at you, and you have only to choose which one(s) you want. Of course the clever guy never firmly selects one, so that he can keep a harem of hot chicks competing with one another for his attention. Fortunately Shougo seems like a responsible guy, though it's too soon to say if any of the girls has much of a mind to her. So far their bodies are getting far more attention than their brains. Not only is there the unknown sister twist, but something funny seems to be going on behind the scenes--why else would the trouble have been taken for Shougo to notice the odd cellphone which the first girl he meets is carrying, when the same time could have been spent showing another set of bouncing boobs? The jokes get fairly risque ("They're so soft and full of cream--like cream puffs!"), which is kind of amusing; otherwise there is little to laugh at. Will this show just be a matter of wishful thinking with cardboard characters, or will some sort of semi-plausible plot develop? So far Nakaimo looks to be fanservice driven and pretty dull. When I first watched this, the thought occured to me that I couldn't remember any of these formulaic harem series from the last season. But then I realized that these sort of shows are always around, I just hadn't considered any to be worth watching.

Last updated Monday, July 09 2012. Created Monday, July 09 2012.

Other Sites
Official Website (japanese) at TBS http://www.tbs.co.jp/anime/nakaimo/

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