An 85 chapter shonen manga from Shonen Sunday magazine, Midori No Hibi (Midori's Days) spawned a 13-part anime series which first aired (in Japan) in April-June 2004. Having not read the manga, this writeup will just focus on that anime, of which Various DVD versions are floating about, although it's unclear which if any of these are official releases; I followed it on fansub, which were released with only a few days delay.
microlith helpfully points out: Media Blasters announced they had licensed Midori no Hibi at AX2004. There is only ONE legit DVD release, and that's the Japanese R2 dvds (no legit english dvd release exists.)
In the first show we are introduced to Sawamura Seiji, who, after his 20th successive rejection, despairs of ever finding a girlfriend and that as a result he'll have to live out his three years of high school with "only his right hand as his girlfriend". What appears to be a dubious bit of translation emerges as the key idea of the series, as, under never-explained circumstances, Midori appears. Literally. Or rather, the top half of her. About 6 inches high. Naked. In place of his right hand... With its ridiculous plot, Midori No Hibi could never take itself too seriously, but it manages to balance the madcap humour with some touching moments as the characters are developed, and the more blatant fan service is phased out after the first few episodes.
Learning to cope with the unlikely pairing and the decidely awkward situations it generates motivates much of the following action. It transpires that Midori has always admired Seiji from afar; and that her real body has been in a comatose state since the two were magically joined. Can the shy, academic Midori tame wayward Sawamura, previously dependant on his "Devil's right hand" to maintain his fiercesome reputation amongst the local delinquents? Can Midori be returned to her body, and in the meantime kept secret? And, of course, will Seiji learn to love her?
The animation style is fairly manic but this seems to be a stylistic decision rather than a reflection of budget restrictions- production values seem high, and much of it is executed with flair- often incorporating visual elements of computer games, horror films or kids' drawings to enhance daydreams, flashbacks and so on. Each episode clocks in at 24 minutes, so if you strip out the intro and outro credits/songs you can watch the whole thing in under five hours, which might make it useful for an Anime club evening as opposed to an epic all-nighter. The only downside of following a series like this is that you lose the moral high ground over any friends of yours who watch TV soaps!
Significant Spoilers from here on...
Note- I've used the western Given Name - Family Name convention here. In the episode reviews I've used whichever version is most commonly used by the main characters- e.g. although the form leader refers to herself as Takako, Seiji almost always calls her Ayase.
Seiji Sawamura The "Mad Dog" with "The Devil's Right Hand", Seiji is infamous at his school for being a violent delinquent, yet is not without his principles and will only fight when he considers it just. Unlucky in love and a failure at school, he despairs of finding a girlfriend yet seems dismissive of Midori's affections. Inevitably a more caring, considerate side to him emerges, but even without his right hand he racks up an impressive body count in fights during the series, only losing to girls!
Midori Kasugano The "real" Midori is a timid creature, yet once she becomes part of Seiji she becomes confident, impetuous and happy to share her feelings. Has always loved Seiji. From a respectable family, she nonetheless seems to enjoy domestic chores and generally looking after him. Has (fittingly) green hair (like her mother!), the standard big anime eyes and a deceptive level of strength, being able to pull Seiji's entire body around behind her. Enjoys dressing up in "I Love Seiji" clothes of her own design, and keeps a diary of their experiences.
Rin Sawamura Older sister to Seiji, and almost entirely evil. She seems to exist for two reasons- tormenting Seiji, and fanservice :) Routinely uses judo on her little brother to still the allowance he gets from their parents, who are permanently absent. Ultimately however she does look out for his interests, she'd just never admit to it.
Takako Ayase Head of Seiji's class, the prim and proper Ayase looks down on his delinquent ways until he rescues her from a rival gang. Then embarks on an elaborate series of schemes to try and win his heart, often daydreaming that some minor action of hers will immediately prompt him to marry her. Torn between wanting to confess to him and her own stubborn pride and academic reputation.
Kōta Shingyōji Close family friend of Midori, and a member of her class at school. Has feelings for Midori, but seems to have set them aside since she clearly loves Seiji and he would rather see her happy.
Shuichi Takamizawa Token geek, technically savvy but socially inept, with a particular fixation on dolls and figurines due to his inability to understand or control real women. Also in Seiji's class, although he's never noticed the Otaku- who has devoted much of his life to his favourite doll, of an idol called Marin. Obviously switches his affections to the living, breathing doll that is Midori. Has a habit of being knocked unconscious in most episodes in which he appears.
Shiori Tsukishima Sexually suggestive and very forward admirer of Seiji's from his neighbourhood, which would be fine were she not about 10 years old... one episode devoted mostly to her, but otherwise only really appears in passing to tease Seiji.
Others- also making regular appearances are Osamu Miyahara, Seiji's junior; Midori's mother; Seiji's cat, which seems just as unlucky in love as him; and a steady stream of delinquents for Seiji to beat up and girls to turn him down.
1 The Right-Hand Girlfriend 3/4/04
This, the first episode, is unsuprisingly scene setting. What is suprising is that the how and why of Midori and Seiji's sudden...attachment isn't really offered- at most there's a hint that the cat has something to do with it! We learn that Seiji is a formidable fighter, but not without a sense of honour- targetting only those stronger than him. After beating up an entire gang, and suffering his 20th rejection, Midori appears on the scene, and an emotional rollercoaster results. She's thrilled to be so close to her beloved Seiji, yet he just wants to figure out how to get rid of her. He is turned away at the gate of her (extremely posh) family home with the news that she's away "on urgent business", so decides to just wrap her up in a bandage and order her to be silent instead. The girlfriends of the gang disposed of earlier turn up and pretend to be fans to get into his house- with Seiji oblivious to their true nature and, predictably, instantly lovestruck, it's Midori who saves him (them?) when one of the girls is about to club him over the head with a lump of wood. The girls flee, Midori is somewhat dazed, and Seiji realises he needs to take better care of her, despite their odd circumstances...
2 Our Memory 10/4/04
The class leader Ayase is developed here, although she does briefly appear in the first episode. A death threat from Rin (attached to the drinks in the fridge, and conditional on their being drunk) also offers some more explanation of Seiji's living arrangements (his parents never appearing and apparently away from the home).
A legend has begun to circulate that Seiji's "Devil's right hand" is bandaged up after he punched straight through a Yakuza car, and unsuprisingly the other kids are fearful of him, moving their desks away from his. The exception being model student Ayase, who dismisses him as being a boastful delinquent. She holds this point of view even when Seiji rescues her from a group of thugs from a rival school who were trying to take advantage of his injury, and it becomes apparent that the boasts come from his junior, Osamu, rather than Seiji. Osamu is kidnapped by the gang, who threaten to kill him. Ayase finds the challenge note they issued to Seiji and follows him to the meeting- where he takes a beating without throwing a punch so as to end the rivalry and keep the gang away from the school. Realising that Seiji is more honourable than she expected (and still slightly in awe at the way he rescued her), Ayase is the first to move her desk back and Midori catches her staring longingly at him.
Meanwhile Seiji discovers that Midori's real body has been in a coma for three days, but attempts to reunite the miniature Midori with her body are misconstrued by the domestic staff as him fondling her breasts, leading to a hasty exit!
Midori starts keeping a diary, a trait that continues for the rest of the series.
3 Days of Discovery 17/4/04
Seiji's older and deadlier sister Rin returns to town, just in time to steal his monthly allowance on the grounds that otherwise he'd spend it on adult magazines. Seiji tries to fight back, to no avail, until Rin attempts an armlock and spots Midori- this, it transpires, is the first time Seiji's ever beaten Rin in a fight. Once over the initial shock, she seems more surprised at Midori's emotional attachment to Seiji than the physical one.
Rin's old biker gang turns up at the house, and she decides to use Seiji's allowance to treat them all to a trip to the hot springs. Seiji and Midori are allowed to tag along, and much fan service ensues- from Midori using her body as a sponge to rub Seiji's back to Rin spending most of the episode naked. There's also a Sake-fueled brawl and Midori is exposed to the gang, but they're so drunk they assume Seiji is a ventriloquist. Aside from all that madness, Rin tells Midori in flashback about Seiji's childhood- how he used to be bullied, and made no effort to resist. It was the young Rin that looked out for him- and first trained him to use the "Devil's Right Hand". After a week of training, he confronted the bullies- only to be defeated anyway. Yet to Rin's surprise and grudging respect, he kept going with the training, eventually becoming the feared "Mad Dog" Sawamura- but his early experiences meant that he would never fight a weaker opponent.
Rin hopes that this tale of early weakness will put Midori off Seiji, but she of course just loves him all the more for it. Seiji is unaware of the conversation, as for most of it Rin is casually drowning him in the pool- a habit from when they used to be bathed together as children. Once he comes round, the gang are gone, leaving Seiji to foot the bill for the trashed room and having to hitch-hike home.
4 Our Secret Revealed!? 24/4/04
Another episode, another character, and this time it's obsessive doll-collector Takamizawa, who Seiji meets at a dress shop for figurines whilst clothes-shopping for Midori. Horrified by the prices and even moreso by the geeky occupants of the store, Seiji just wants to escape, but is delayed as Midori delights in dressing up in various outfits. He manages to convince Takamizawa that this encounter should be kept a secret from the others at school, but winds up knocking him out and fleeing when the otaku catches a glimpse of Midori.
Having long channeled his affections into dolls (being fearful of real girls and their unpredictable ways), Takamizawa begins sending clothes to Midori and stalking Seiji, convinced that she's an ultra-realistic doll from a western manufacturer. He's smitten when he realises the truth- for a living doll has always been his dream. Keeping the secret in exchange for having Midori/Seiji at his beck and call, Takamizawa pushes things too far during a photo-shoot with Midori, who points out that she's a real girl, not a doll, and turns him down. The hapless geek seems to settle for friends- but then wants to take pictures of Midori in a bikini. She panics and Seiji predictably pulls a wrestling move on Takamizawa, rendering him once again unconscious. He has to be carried home, but the next day seems to have no recollection of the events- the secret can last a little longer.
In a development from episode two, Ayase brings an Obentō for Seiji, hoping that the wonderful food will prompt him into asking her out- but preoccupied with guarding his secret, he bolts out of the class before she gets a chance to offer it to him.
This is one of my favourite episodes, for a couple of reasons. One is the Takamizawa No Hibi short films that crop up as Seiji imagines what the doll-collector wants with Midori- breakneck pace spoof horror movies, with a darkened colour set, and even a second of rolling credits. The other is that through Takamizawa the show can send up a large chunk of its fanbase- already Midori puppets/dolls are available for the more dedicated Otaku...
5 The Power of Love 1/5/04
A less impressive episode, but still has its moments. Both Midori and Seiji get ill at various points and so the ways in which they care for each other are explored. After a run-in or three with a sadistic games teacher, Seiji is exhausted after attempting 100 press-ups with only his left hand, and carelessly drinks a large chunk of a bottle of water from the fridge- only to discover that it is Rin's Tequila and passing out. Impressively, Midori can somehow tug his sleeping body behind her (as has happened briefly in other episodes) and so sets about chores and dealing with visitors to the house- managing to terrify both the Pizza Boy and a door-to-door saleswoman by speaking for the clearly unconscious and rather dead-looking Seiji.
All this exertion takes its toll on Midori, who develops a fever but refuses to let Seiji take her to the hospital. Instead he bunks off school and prepares traditional tamagozake medicine (egg yolks and sake) for her, and is surprised to find himself lonely while she is quietly resting. Back at school he is once again challenged by the gym teacher, this time to a hundred chin-ups, again one-handed and with the threat of failing the class. He manages 99 of them, but can't muster the strength for the final one. Just as he is about to fall from the bar, Midori grabs hold of it, refusing to let go even if it kills her. Seiji performs the last chin-up with his supposedly damaged hand, but the teacher doesn't accept it. Not that it matters- Seiji is more concerned for Midori, and is slowly realising how helpful she is.
Meanwhile, the other would-be love interests are still cropping up- Ayase tries to visit Seiji to nurse him back to health (and win his affections that way) but is using some notes from school as an excuse, so fails to find his house after Shiori takes them from her. After repeated blows to the head in volleyball and basketball games, Takamizawa is beginning to have visions of Midori again...
6 Shiori's Love Love Plan of Attack! 8/5/04
Back to the new episode, new character approach, this one is about Shiori, the extremely forward 10 year old that lives in Seiji's neighbourhood and is also infatuated with him (strange that he's never had a girlfriend with all these female admirers). Seiji and Midori are about to enjoy a day out together, when Shiori jumps out of a car and asks Seiji to look after for a while. It emerges that her father has recently remarried, and Shiori claims she wants him and her step-mother to spend some time together alone rather than have a family holiday. They agree to this, and the much-protesting Seiji is left to look after the kid...
Shiori in fact wants to get away from her parents because she resents her step-mother, who she sees as trying to replace her real mother, who has died. Whilst out in town with Seiji, she acts as if they are on a date, much to the horror of Ayase, who sees them together. At an amusement arcade they run into Rin, who takes it upon herself to train Shiori in the ways of seduction so that she can win Seiji's affections- the result being a rather disturbing sequence of outfits ranging from schoolgirl uniforms to dominatrix kit, all modelled when supposedly Seiji is meant to be helping Shiori with homework. Rin realises that Seiji isn't as desperate or unscrupulous as she imagined, and even arranges for him to see Shiori in the bathroom, but his reaction is one of outrage when Midori points out what's going on. Shiori is crestfallen, but not unconsolable, and eventually Seiji convinces her to go home and accept the love of her new mother.
Finally, Ayase, perhaps catalysed by the sight of Seiji with another girl, finds the courage to invite him to a film, under the pretense of a spare ticket. He gladly accepts, not realising that it's a date. Midori does, of course, and wonders what she should do about her latest rival.
7 First Date 15/5/04
The day of Seiji's date with Ayase, and she's been meticulously planning her atakku- from researching the opportunities to scream during the horror movie, to sending her parents off on a trip with her allowance money to ensure an empty home. Midori is concerned about the competition, but a combination of Seiji's witlessness and Ayase's tendency to get ahead of herself and daydream (usually in the style of sepia-tinted, grainy filmed romances) causes most of the opportunities to be missed or backfire. For much of the date Seiji is thinking more of his stomach- even when Ayase drags him to the shops to model swimwear for him.
Her plan to be caught naked in the bathroom (the writers seem fond of this idea, Shiori tries a similar thing in the previous episode) by Seiji is the only one that goes vaguely to plan but not in a good way- she comes running out after Seiji says the dinner is burning, and immediately faints when he sees her. He puts her to bed and leaves a note thanking her for the (in actual fact inedible) meal, and Midori decides to salvage the evening with a trip to a fountain overlooking the city, a spontaneous moment that proves far more influential on Seiji than all of Ayase's carefully scripted plans.
8 Right-hand Seiji 22/5/04
This episode is approximately half-way through the series, and appropriately marks a turning point in the feelings of both main characters. The episode unwinds in two strands, as each character has the same dream (nightmare?)- that Seiji wakes up as Midori's right hand. The action alternates between the two dreams, at first sticking to the same basic themes- waking up, preparing breakfast, sorting out for clothes for Seiji etc., but filtered through the perceptions of each character. In Midori's dream, for instance, she is a lot less careful with Seiji, smacking his head into things several times and carelessly revealing him to plain view, as she tries to get used to being the bigger character. For Seiji, the experience makes him realise of how much hard work it is for Midori to be his right hand, having to avoid detection.
There are two key scenes that don't arise in both dreams. In Seiji's dream, Midori braves the oppressive atmosphere of the figurine collector store and delights in dressing mini-Seiji up in various outfits and accessories available there. Whilst she's doing so, a guy starts taking up-skirt pictures of her with a cameraphone. Seiji spots him doing so, but can't warn Midori, nor take action, for fear of the reaction of the massed geeks in the shop were they to discover the secret. Eventually he can take no more and is about to lash out anyway- but before he does, Takamizawa of all people comes to her rescue.
In Midori's dream, she runs into a school friend, who she has to lie to in order to protect the secret. The friend invites her to a coffee bar, where she catches up on some of the latest gossip. When the friend departs in a hurry for an art lesson, Midori bursts into tears and runs after her, but then awakes from the dream and wonders why she's upset. It occurs to her that although she is very happy being with Seiji, her other life isn't frozen with her unconscious body, and so she is missing out on changes in her friends' lives.
9 Takkii no Hibi 29/5/04
Another strong episode revolving around Takamizawa, split into two parts. After repeated blows to the head and the discovery of his memory card from the photo shoot, he's finally remembered who Midori is. Not only does he start stalking Seiji again (for candid photos), he sets up a homepage for her- which rapidly obtains 500,000 hits. Midori is awe-struck by her new fame, but Seiji threatens to destroy his laptop unless the site be taken down. Takamizawa agrees but only on the condition that Seiji do a job for him, which he knows he'll accept due to his dire financial status.
The job turns out to be manning a stall at a doll collectors' convention- a stall dedicated to Midori merchandise, from the cute to the twisted (Midori dolls in widow costumes, or with built in 'massagers'). After Midori starts to loudly advertise the stall (under the pretence of ventriloquism on Seiji's part), a crowd forms and they rapidly sell out- leaving only the real Midori, which they claim can't be sold since she's the prototype. This just makes her even more desirable, and a bidding war breaks out, until a famous actor places a bid no ordinary fan can meet- 500,000 Yen. Seiji flies into a rage, declaring that Midori is so precious to him that no amount would tempt him to part with her- which she takes at face value, and is delighted by. The crowd take this as yet another passionate performance, and applaud him as a god amongst collectors for his incredible level of obsession.
Back at the supermarket but this time shopping for quality steaks rather than Tofu, Seiji once again runs into a distressed Takamizawa. It transpires that he's fallen in love- with a real girl instead of a doll. Sensing an opportunity to get him away from Midori, Seiji agrees to help him confess his feelings, but is appalled to discover the girl, Yuma, is apparently a real-life version of Takamizawa's favourite doll, Marin. Realising that Takamizawa is really motivated by a desire to get her to live out his cosplay fantasies of Marin, Seiji tries to sabotage the confession, styling the geek as a delinquent (although the bokken, black clothing and heavy jewellery is offset somewhat by his glasses). Unfortunately, this turns out to be precisely to Yuma's tastes, so Seiji resorts to drastic measures, disguising himself as a violent thug and challenging Takamizawa to a fight, with Yuma the prize. This too backfires, as the fanboy shows unexpected dedication to his latest idol and prepares to fight. Seiji and Midori wonder if they've misjudged him, if his feelings run that deep- but then Yuma beats up Seiji, outraged that he's ruined the perfect moment. This, however, doesn't fit in with Takamizawa's fantasy of Marin, and so he loses all interest and flees the scene, Yuma in hot pursuit.
10 The Distance between Hearts 5/6/04
Midori's childhood friend Kōta awakes from a dream in which he sees Midori as Sleeping Beauty- and Seiji as the prince who's kiss can awaken her. Meanwhile, Seiji is at a triple-date Gōkon, and is also thinking of a kiss- from the cute but shy girl sitting opposite him. She is of course Ayase in disguise, although this isn't one of her convoluted plans- chance has thrown them together, and she's worried of being found out. During a round of the King game, Seiji's friend arranges for the two of them to eat a chocolate stick from opposite ends- which Ayase realises will lead to a kiss. She's somewhat terrified by Seiji's enthusiasm for this (as is Midori), and rather than have her much-awaited first kiss with him be under these circumstances, she uppercuts him and storms out.
Seiji can't then understand why she is being so stand-offish to her at school the next day, but before he can dwell upon it too much, Kōta catches up with him, and finally overcomes his nerves and asks to speak to him about Midori. At the coffee house from Midori's dream, he explains how Midori has admired Seiji since junior high, but is very shy abuot her feelings- a description Seiji finds hard to believe of the pint-sized bundle of energy he's been sharing his life with. Kōta wants Seiji to go to Midori's house, but remembering the disastrous results of last time, Seiji politely declines. Kōta is upset, and Seiji realises the younger boy has himself always had feelings for Midori (although he denies that in a fluster), so he tells Kōta that Midori would probably be pleased to know she had a friend who cared so much. This surprises Kōta, who confesses he thought Seiji would probably dump him in Tokyo bay or have him locked up by the Yakuza for even daring to speak to him- rather than being the considerate guy he seems to be.
Midori thinks back to her first day at High School, where Kōta gave her the courage to speak in class. We see her with the girl from her dream, who it is apparent she looks up to for her confidence in sharing her feelings. Once more, we see her hesitant and afraid at the train station, unable to find the courage to confess to Seiji. Fortunately, these are happier times, as she cheerfully tells Seiji she loves him whilst writing her diary that night, and he's so used to it he just tells her to go to sleep. Before she does, though, she thinks again of the life she's been leaving behind, and how her mystery illness must be causing distress not to just Kōta but also her mother.
11 Fated Reunion 12/6/04
Seiji is finding his revision of calculus difficult, so he comes up with a plan to get Midori to take the test for him, although she probably would if he just asked anyway...he challenges her to a scissors, paper, stone match (with bonus pointing round that apparently is included in Japan), with the loser doing whatever the winner wants. Of course, Midori defeats him in all 6 rounds and her request is that he tell her he likes her- she'll even accept a lie, she just wants to hear it! Seiji can't go back on his word, but for some reason can't bring himself to say it. Midori is disappointed, but gets in an "I love you" of her own anyway.
Ayase has yet another plan to win Seiji's heart (again acted out in a daydream), by offering him some lovingly prepared notes on the exam. However, Seiji doesn't realise their significance, and her nerves prevent her just confessing outright. Neither the notes nor the late-night studying help; Seiji falls asleep in the exam and fails. Walking home, he's surprised by his disappointment, and notes that before Midori appeared, he never would have studied for or cared about a test anyway. She's delighted by this, and even more so when she realises that they've accidentally wandered up to the fountain, her favourite place. She wishes she could stay there forever with him, and he concedes that they can go back at any time.
Back at Midori's home, her mother is trying a wide range of mystics and healers to try to bring Midori back to waking life. Kōta is watching, and realises how hopeless the situation is. He still feels that somehow Seiji would be able to help, so resolves to ask him once more. Unfortunately, he picks the wrong band of delinquents outside the school and winds up kidnapped by a rival group who think Seiji has gone soft. Seiji's junior, Miya, spots them carrying Kōta away and calling for help, and relays this information to him. Midori realises the description could be of Kōta, and so they head to the gang's hideout at an abandoned bowling alley. Seiji manages to rough them up, but without his Devil's right hand, can't finish the job properly, and with it three on one looks to be in trouble. Midori takes matters into her own hands and, seizing a bowling pin, finishes them off. Kōta is safe, but has seen Midori and (in the usual response) passes out in amazement. Is the secret finally out?
12 Sudden Parting 19/6/04
Unlike Takamizawa or Rin's gang, Kōta's discovery stays with him when he comes round, and so Seiji and Midori have to tell him everything. Midori is concerned that she caused trouble for Kōta but he blames himself, and is more worried about getting things back to normal, especially for the sake of Midori's mother. Seiji explains that Midori knows she's causing upset, but the situation isn't her fault, and nothing can be done. Back at the house, another witchdoctor pronounces that Midori cannot be restored since her soul doesn't want to return- it must do so of its own accord.
Later, Midori is knitting a scarf (emblazoned LOVE) for Seiji, and he admits he's always dreamed of a girl lovingly preparing one for him so that they can share it. Midori is excited, but he dismisses hers since she's "just his right hand" and so they couldn't share it as a real couple. Dejected, she asks if that's all she'll ever be to him, and he wonders whether they can really go on like this. Whilst he sleeps, Midori finishes the scarf, wraps him in it, and thinks that perhaps the situation is all down to her.
Awaking, warm because of the scarf, Seiji is amazed to find his right hand 'healed'. He can't understand why he feels bad about it- with him and presumably Midori back to normal, he figures that everything should be o.k. In an attempt to suppress his feelings, he rapidly reverts to type- skipping class when questioned by Ayase, lashing out at Miya for no reason, buying a caseload of adult magazines and above all delighting in fighting against a massive gang with his returned Devil's right fist.
But after the fight he still seems down. Ayase (who has herself been preparing a scarf) turns up after being told about the fight by Miya, and berates him for his sudden change of character. Seiji tells her that she shouldn't bother- and she finally manages to admit she cares, telling Seiji she loves him. Embracing him, she confesses that she's felt that way ever since he rescued her from the other delinquents. As the episode ends, we catch a glimpse of the awoken Midori standing at the window of her house, looking out to the city.
13 The Days of Two People 26/6/04
The final episode picks up the cliffhanger of the previous one, but this time, things run a bit differently...before cutting to Midori at her window, Seiji tells Ayase the words that had haunted him all his life- "I'm sorry". Ayase's feelings for him have made him realise how right being with Midori felt.
At Midori's Kōta visits and learns that she has no recollection of her time as Seiji's right hand- just a sense of joy and belonging that she can't place. Seiji returns home, and is constantly reminded of her absence- from opening the door left-handed to seeing her miniature toothbrush. Opening a cupboard, he is startled by Rin, who has returned to steal his allowance (again). She, as usual, beats him up after discovering that Midori has left and yet he hasn't been to see her.
Finding the diary Midori had been keeping, Seiji finally goes to the house, but can't bring himself to ring the bell. Kōta runs into him before he can leave, and whilst he explains Midori's return to being shy, and her memory loss, she spots them from the balcony. With Kōta and her mother's help, she confronts her feelings, and realises she must find happiness in this life- not go back to her coma in an attempt to rejoin him. She searches for Seiji throughout the town, intent on confessing, and eventually finds him at the fountain. Her courage seems to fail her one last time, but in the end she tells Seiji she loves him. The fountain bursts into life, the first snowflakes begin to fall, and we know all is going to be right with the world- for the final scene, Midori awakes at home, no longer shy, and content that her love has only just begun.
He never did say it properly, though. And whilst Seiji's cat has also found love, what of Ayase? Or Kōta? and Takamizawa remains obsessed with his dolls....still, Seiji ends his losing streak at 20, and Midori gets the guy she's been after for years, and so this is really just their story. I don't imagine there being a sequel, but perhaps some spin-offs or additional episodes are possible.
- First aired dates from AnimeNewsNetwork.com
- Seichi Anime fansubs, bittorrent links from http://s92717645.onlinehome.us/seichi/ , full of helpful tips on Japanese cultural differences in addition to the subtitling.
- There's a seemingly official site at www.midorinohibi.com, might be for the show, might be the manga, can't read a word of Japanese so can't really offer you any more insight than that!