(Nitsuj): Morning Chibi.
(Chibi Isis): Morning. You unkept pig of a man.
(Nitsuj): Excuse me?
(Chibi Isis): You heard me baka! It’s. . .it’s not like I care for you or anything.
(Nitsuj): Chibi, are you okay?
(Chibi Isis): What are you talking about onii-chan? Chibi is always okay for her onii-chan who she loves very much.
(Nitsuj): Um, Chibi what are you doing?
*Chibi pulls out her katana*
(Chibi Isis): Someone wants a swordfight. Someone I’m looking at.
(Nitsuj): You sincerely mean that?
(Chibi Isis):. . .No.
*Chibi puts katana away*
(Nitsuj): Chibi what’s with all the mood swings? You’re acting crazy.
(Chibi Isis): I’m sorry. I just feel that people are starting to get tired of my naïve, innocent, but smart child personality. So, I figured I change up my personality to stay fresh.
(Nitsuj): Well that’s not true. Nobody’s getting tired of you Chibi. Besides changing up your personality is meaningless if you’re forcing it plus you’ll still be seen as you no matter what.
(Chibi Isis): Oh you mean like in Blend S.
(Nitsuj): Not my first response but yes. Based off the four-panel comic strip manga by Miyuki Nakayama in 2013 and still continuing to this day, Blend S takes the things we love the most about anime. Cute girls, maid cafes, lovable tropes, and puts it all into one funny story about their daily life. Next to Konosuba and Love Tyrant, this was one of the funniest and most enjoyable animes of 2017. Produced by A-1 Pictures (SAO and Magi) airing in the fall and won people over with its good animation, a good and young cast of VAs who were mostly unknown and only had 2 or 3 years of experience, and just enjoyable atmosphere to it. This anime falls into the same category as say Dog Days and “Is the Order a Rabbit”, you don’t watch it for major conflict or problems, you watch it to relax and get enjoyment out of it. Since this it’ll help me teach you a lesson about character, what say we take a look at it Chibi? I’ll let you help me with the review.
(Chibi Isis): Yay! I mean, I guess I can join you. It’s not like I want to review it with you, you pitiful dung beetle.
(Nitsuj): Oi, choose between tsundere or sadistic and stick with it. This is our review of Blend S.
Opening and Ending Theme
(Chibi Isis): The opening is “Bon Appétit♡S” by Blend A. This was hands down on of the best openings of 2017. It’s cute, energetic, matches up with the anime, and you can’t help but hum along with it. The song just feels so welcoming and feels you with joy whenever you hear it. The song was actually sung by the VAs themselves and they just do a fantastic job here.
(Nitsuj): The ending is “Detarame na Minus to Plus ni Okeru Blend Ko” by Blend A. It’s alright, I didn’t really care for this ending all that much. It’s peaceful, cute, and once again the VAs do a good job with the song but it’s not as memorable as the opening. Truth be told the song actually makes me feel a little sleepy not because it’s boring but because it’s so peaceful that it makes me want to drift off.
(Chibi Isis): The anime starts off with our main character Maika voiced by Azumi Waki who has just received a rejection letter from a company hoping to hire her (Nitsuj: You dare reject me!? You must die). Maika’s dream is to study abroad so Aika (her older sister) tells her to ask her dad for the money but Maika wants to earn the money herself without relying on others to pay the way for her (Nitsuj: Good mind set. I like her). The next day she goes to another job interview which turns her down because she has a scary smile (kind of like Se-chan. Even when she smiles she’s scary). As she walks by a coffee café named Stile, the manager Dino voiced by Tomoaki Maeno (Decim from Death Parade) sees her and becomes so smitten with her that he gets a nosebleed (Nitsuj: Well I guess it’s better than the blood rushing to the other spot). He offers her a job at the café which she accepts and she meets the rest of the staff. First up is Kaho voiced by Akari Kitō who is another waitress and Koyo who is the chef voiced by Tatsuhisa Suzuki (Yuji from Baka and Tese). Once Maika changes into her maid outfit (speaking of maid outfits, what happen to Yin-chan’s outfit? (Nitsuj): She burned it. Good thing I got backups), Dino and Kaho explain to her that all the workers have different personalities that they use to interact with customers (because a plain café would be boring). Dino wants Maika to play the sadistic character because of her smile which completely is the opposite of her personality (Nitsuj: Are you kidding me, this is a dream come true. You’re getting paid to treat the customers like trash. That’s like every waitress and waiter’s dream). She gets her first customers where despite being a bit shaky and nervous, she manages to please her customers (scenes here: https://youtu.be/ZIr-2RMLVgA and https://youtu.be/mGLGvPUuu6w. Those guys are masochist). Despite being a bit uncomfortable with this gimmick, Maika decides to stay on aboard. The next day we get to meet Mafuyu voiced by Anzu Haruno another waitress at the café who despite looking like a child is actually a college student (Baron: Oh~ she’s legal. Take that police). As far as character goes, she’s the imouto (which is ironic, seeing as how she longs to have a little sister and is actually a big sister herself. Scene here: https://youtu.be/8MONA8zrb7s). We also learn more about Kaho who plays the tsundere character (twintails and blonde hair. She has the traits of a tsundere) despite being a very out-going and sweet girl who’s also a gamer (Nitsuj: She’s a keeper). After work the girls go to an arcade and have a good time before they go home.
Episode 2 starts off with Maika practicing being a sadist (Nitsuj: We know a master in this field) and decides to start smiling while serving the customers which works out wonderfully (scene here: https://youtu.be/6yXuGqXAyjU). Maika’s sadistic smile also charms a foreigner who was just passing through. In the next part Koyo reveals that he’s a fan of yuri (what’s yuri? (Nitsuj): Ask Isis) and wants more girls to visit the shop so he can see some yuri action. Maika and Kaho decide to act out a yuri scene together by feeding each other but Maika accidently drops cream on Kaho’s sweater and tries to wash it for her (Baron: Yeah! Take it off! Take it all off!). After this, Mafuyu and Dino fight to see who gets a magical girl figurine Kaho won at the arcade (unlike here in America, Japanese arcades aren’t rigged. (Nitsuj): And they still exist). They play rock-paper-scissors where Mafuyu wins and then we go to the last story which is a contest to decide a new item for the menu. The teams are split into two where Maika and Mafuyu are on a team and they create a parfait where Maika unintentionally adds salt, vinegar, and tabasco sauce into the parfait (wow, she had no idea what she was doing. (Nitsuj): And that’s why some of you aren’t allowed in the kitchen). Despite this sin against food, the customers love it but only because Maika made it and they can’t resist her sadistic smile. Maika and Mafuyu win where they each get a reward for their victory. For Maika, she wants nothing seeing as how she got to cook with a friend (stop being selfless). For Mafuyu, she dresses up Maika into a magical girl from her favorite show.
Episode 3 starts off with Maika arriving to work before everyone else. Dino is there where he talks about how he left his home country of Italy because he fell in love with Japanese anime and developed a love for black-haired women. He then ask Maika why she’s so interested in foreign countries and she says it’s because she got bored of her country (at the age of 5). She talks about how she grew up in a traditional home until one day a foreign man came to discuss business with her dad. He was so different and a breath of fresh air that she instantly became interested in foreign countries (Nitsuj: You just want to date a blonde, don’t you?). Her obsession with foreign countries didn’t stop there as she tried to convince her parents to dye her hair blond, install a chimney so she could capture Santa (I’ve been trying to do that for years but he keeps escaping), and even admits that her first crush was a Colonel Sanders statue (Nitsuj: When you offer chicken at such a good price like KFC it’s hard not to love the Colonel). As a thank you for listening to her rattle on, Maika allows Dino to use her lap as a pillow to rest before everyone else arrives and when they arrive we get a case of sexual harassment (scene here: https://youtu.be/360JF9TQ6kw). In the second part, Dino works up the courage to ask Maika out on a date but she misreads his intentions and invites the others who show up except for Mafuyu who wanted to stay home and watch anime (can’t fault her on that). Kaho and Koyo decide to help Dino with his date but these two are introverts and outside of work, don’t know how to interact with the world. The day does end on a good note when Maika and Dino buying each other matching keychains (and like that the ship is sailing). In the third part, a customer accidently leaves an R18 doujin in the café and it gets found by Maika (scene here: https://youtu.be/YGuHSsNcHOQ). They try to find the customer it belongs to with Maika asking them directly and indirectly (scene here: https://youtu.be/auW97Aa5_pA. (Nitsuj): No to the first. Yes, to the second. (Baron): Yes, to the first. No to the second. I like teachers (Corbin): Yes, to the first and second). They decide to put out a notice and the doujin gets picked up by the owner who to the shock of Maika isn’t a man but instead a lovely young woman (scene here: https://youtu.be/AYlGupuU8AY).
In episode 4 we see that the owner of the doujin is Miu voiced by Atsumi Tanezaki (Lisa from Terror in Resonance) who in actuality is a doujin artist and actually wrote the doujin herself (scene here: https://youtu.be/ZCz9QTHRPJ0). She gets hired by the café and takes on the big sister persona which she excels at (she’s almost too good at it to be honest) and also wants to stick around because she believes the workers will provide good source material for her work. Especially Maika and Dino as Miu figured out that Dino has a crush on Maika (Nitsuj: They’re 10 years apart) and likes to use them as models for her stories. Later on while reading customer feedback, some of the customers want Maika to be more sadistic so the group train Maika to be more sadistic and what they create is a dominatrix Maika who would be too much for the customers to handle (scene here: https://youtu.be/K83l3mSS6DQ. (Corbin): Ohh~ Blend S. You made me jizz my pants). They instead revert her back to normal and tell her to just be herself (Nitsuj: And that a lone is all you need to get over. Scene here: https://youtu.be/RUFq38S-nqk).
(Nitsuj): In the first part of episode 5 it’s ponytail day (scene here: https://youtu.be/0dgs5Fqs_Zg). After work it begins to rain and Maika doesn’t have an umbrella so Dino walks her to the station. When he closes up shop he accidently locks Kaho and Koyo inside and the two don’t realize this until later because they were absorbed in playing a game on their phone. We actually do see a mood between the two start to form until they realize that they had important things to do after work (nerds). Dino comes back and lets them out where they flee like cockroaches exposed to the light (scene here: https://youtu.be/-W2-DWhg9iU). The next day we find out that Maika caught a cold running from the train station to her house without an umbrella (why didn’t you give her the umbrella you idiot?) so Dino, Kaho, and Mafuyu go to visit her where they meet Aika and Koichi (Maika’s big brother) who are shocked to see that Maika has friends and mistake Dino for Maika’s boyfriend (Chibi Isis: Not yet but we’re getting there. Scene here: https://youtu.be/dLAtHlU7vNk).
Episode 6 is all about outdoor fun (yay~. Let’s play ultimate frisbee and catch). The group goes to have a BBQ on the riverbank much to the protest of Kaho, Koyo, and Miu (scene here: https://youtu.be/RRnEuwLUJiY, city bums) where Maika bought a huge tuna (Chibi Isis: You sure it’s a tuna and not a cardboard cut out? (Nitsuj): One can only hope Chibi, one can only hope). Despite not having that much experience cooking tuna Dino manages to cook it just right and Maika rewards him by giving him the best part, the eyes (scenes here: https://youtu.be/9fDGzUzeWoQ and https://youtu.be/F-0EbsZolNA). On the drive back home they decide to plan a trip to the beach, and the next day Dino goes swimsuit shopping with Maika where he texts the others for help (defeating the purpose of him being there in the first place. Scene here: https://youtu.be/14BQ7CIpX18, he truly is a guy who knows how to block himself). She tries on a few swimsuits where she finds the one she likes (scenes here: https://youtu.be/iaWQUJ5oFtU and https://youtu.be/hzXFBtWY3pw). On their day off, they all go to the beach and we get to see the girls in their bikinis (scene here: https://youtu.be/plc9Puwir3U. So I think we can all agree Kaho has the best swimsuit? (Corbin): Yep. (Baron): No arguments here). We then get a montage of them having fun on the beach with the highlights being Koyo too distracted by Kaho’s swimsuit (scene here: https://youtu.be/5Hm3JuGFVvU and https://youtu.be/3A-wO_iT9lM) and of course Dino and Maika.
Episode 7 starts off with Maho having a full body tan (show me your tanlines) which gives Dino the idea to turn the café into a jungle (scene here: https://youtu.be/xeTE_dyDBGM. (Corbin): What I wouldn’t give to have that kind of service at the end. (Nitsuj): Would you leave. (Corbin): The cable and internet are out at house, I need this). In the next part the café is out of strawberries so Dino and Maika go out to buy some but every supermarket is out of them (Chibi Isis: Must be a sale). They do manage to find one pack but a child wants it as well and Maika scares the child with her smile. Dino manages to calm the child and the mother down with his Italian smile (if it works for Lupin it works for Dino) and they give the strawberries to Dino and Maika. This event upsets Maika and makes her believe she’s not cut out for customer service but Dino cheers her up with his love for her eyes and black hair which gets the attention of the police (scene here: https://youtu.be/UXBpheCja2g, that is the first time I’ve ever seen a police officer react to a lolicon). In the final part the café is busy to the point that the girls start to fall out of character (Chibi Isis: Except for Maika. She seems to have everything under control. (Nitsuj): Unknowingly). The girls suggest they hire a new body with Koyo suggesting they hire a male to help him in the kitchen but Dino rejects that idea (nobody gets close to his Maika) and the girls playfully suggest they do crossdressing to see how it feels.
Nothing much to say about episode 8. Dino hires the last of our maids Hideri voiced by Sora Tokui who looks like a cute little girl but in actuality is a boy (https://youtu.be/4F4qzPbcFiA). Yep, Hideri is a trap and gets put in the roll of idol character which is his dream. He wants to become a professional idol and show his parents that he has talent or they’ll have him inherit the family farm which he doesn’t want to do (Chibi Isis: Farming is for noobs). Despite having a cute face there are times where his voice goes deep and he shows his manly side (scene here: https://youtu.be/r6jnj82cBeY). Later on, he picks up on Dino having a crush on Maika (Chibi Isis: Really? He didn’t know? No offence but I think Dino’s crush on Maika is so obvious that you could see it from space. (Nitsuj): It’s so obvious that Corbin isn’t making any sexual passes at her. (Corbin): Even though I would love to I’m a man of class and won’t step on another man’s prey) and decides to help him deepen his relationship with her. He tells Dino to complement her but all of his attempts fail until at the end of the day he finally just comes out and says he loves Maika (Chibi Isis: Ohh~ you went all the way in, never go all the way in. Go 90% and let the girl go 10%) but she misinterprets this as him just being nice to her. In the final part Miu and Hideri go shopping in order to find a uniform for Hideri but can’t find what he’s looking for. We get a few laughs such as him trying to fight the urge to go to the public bathroom (the Hideyoshi restrooms have yet to be built. (Chibi Isis): Still trying to pass that bill). They go to Mafuyu to see if she has any spare uniforms which she doesn’t so she dresses him up as a magical girl from her favorite show. While he looks it, he’s embarrassed to wear it at work. They then give him an elementary school uniform to wear which he out right rejects but the next day at work they have school day theme going on and he has to wear the uniform.
In episode 9 Maika comes across an abandoned dog which she names Owner (wow, with her name of foreign things I’m surprised she didn’t give it a foreign name like Pierre, William, Alexander, or Joe). Because her siblings hate dogs Maika can’t take care of him so she asks the others with the only one being able to look after him is Dino (no way, that dog is better off in the streets). With enough persuasion Dino agrees to look after Owner which effects his anime watching schedule because Owner threatens him each morning to go out (scenes here: https://youtu.be/Cy1GE4QO4I0 and https://youtu.be/L5KL1H6_Seg). In the second half, Aika comes to visit the café to see how Maika works where we see sadism runs in the family (scenes here: https://youtu.be/yZmtsGmM9TY and https://youtu.be/prnMU7navgA. Maika has a good big sister).
Episode 10 is a Mafuyu episode (Chibi Isis: Showing love to the lolis). It starts off with a customer confessing to Mafuyu and her brutally rejecting him (scene here: https://youtu.be/qS_kYIY43M0, that was the cutest and cruelest rejection I have ever seen). The reason why she rejected the guy is because he doesn’t know her personality outside of work (which is the complete opposite of a little sister). That, and dating a guy would interfere with her free time which involves watching anime in real time (Chibi Isis: Unless he wants to join you I say kick him to the curb). In the next part Kaho is failing math and has to do a make-up test where if she fails again her mother will stop her from playing videogames (that was the same punishment my parents gave me when I was in school). Mafuyu decides to tutor her taking on the role of a big sister, taking Kaho to her favorite café to study (oh my God a normal café. They actually have those in this anime) and changing her shift around so she can be free to tutor Kaho. In the end, Kaho manages to pass her test thanking Mafuyu for everything and the two agree to hang out at Mafuyu’s favorite café from time to time.
(Chibi Isis): Episode 11 is a pretty simple episode. Maika and Dino take Owner to the park. Dino enjoys himself while Owner falls for a girl dog only to scare her away because he inherited Maika’s sadistic smile (he’s clearly Maika’s dog). In the café we see Kaho depress over losing her game data and Koyo makes her feel even more down with his insensitive comments (baka, stop trying to sink your own ship). He decides to make her a parfait to cheer her up, but a customer gives her a keychain of her favorite character from the game which cheers her up. Koyo plays the parfait off as a treat for Hideri (Nitsuj: Actually that reminds me, we haven’t focused on him or Miu for a while now) but Kaho finds out about the parfait being for her and thanks him for trying to cheer her up. Dino once again tries to confess to Maika by cornering her only to have it fail and Maika get mad at him for getting in the way of her work. After the credits we see Maika feel bad about getting upset with Dino so she corners him, apologizes and makes his heart skip a beat. We also get this lucky perv scene between Maika and Hideri (scene here: https://youtu.be/r40A5lQHjHM).
In the final episode the group goes on a ski trip where Dino decides he’s going to confess his feelings to Maika (Nitsuj: Correction, he will try to confess his feelings but fail. (Chibi Isis): You really think so? (Nitsuj): I bet my reputation on it. (Chibi Isis): Good enough for me. Let’s watch him succeed). Dino teaches Maika how to snowboard and at night he goes in for the confession with everyone watching from the shadows (they’re most likely placing bets on if it will succeed or not). Dino finally confesses but Maika fell asleep and didn’t hear it at all (scene here: https://youtu.be/GErgd4cjcM0). Koyo tells him to do it again but Dino decides to hold off believing that now isn’t the right time to confess his feelings. In the second half the group celebrates Christmas at the café where Dino talks about how Koyo, Kaho, and Mafuyu got hired. For Koyo and Kaho, they were the first to join and because they were reclusive didn’t know how to talk to each other at all (Nitsuj: I cannot imagine that) and wouldn’t even talk to each other unless Dino was round (scene here: https://youtu.be/kXiNVDji4Jc). For Mafuyu, Dino scouted her and approached her where she thought he was predator (in some ways yes) and almost caused a scandal in the park. After that Dino talks about hiring Maika where she thanks him and everyone for all the fun times they’ve had so far and confesses that she loves them all to end the season.
(Nitsuj): And that was Blend S. There’s not that much to say about it, what you see is what you get, and you want you get is an enjoyable anime with fun characters and funny situations.
(Chibi Isis): The animation is cute and colorful and each character never goes to waste. While some characters are focused on more than others each character plays a part in the story whether it be helping resolve the problem or provide a funny line or reaction. The music is alright, it fits the anime nicely but the selling point for me is the VAs.
(Nitsuj): Despite a majority of the cast being unknown, young, and only having 2-3 years of experience, they all performed great here. You can tell the casts is having fun and really enjoying themselves. When the casts is enjoying themselves and you can sense it it’s hard not to enjoy the anime as well.
(Chibi Isis): My final score for Blend S is 7.5/10.
(Nitsuj): I give the anime a 6.5/10. While funny and enjoyable I do feel that they use a few jokes and scenarios one too many times. So combining those two scores get 14/20 which gives us a final score of 7/10. A fitting score for a funny and enjoyable anime that’s worth checking out for those of you looking for an anime to relax to and enjoy. So did you learn anything Chibi?
(Chibi Isis): Yep. I should just be myself. I’m fine the way I am.
(Chibi Isis): But what should I do about the people who are bored with my personality?
(Nitsuj): Oh screw those guys. If they can’t accept you for who you are that’s their problem. Besides, have you forgotten? You have wind magic, can summon AI beasts, you’re good at using swords, and if things get too big for you to handle you can call on me and the others. Who are more than happy to help.
(Chibi Isis): Oh yeah. I forgot all about that. Thanks Nii-chan.
(Nitsuj): My pleasure, and thank you reading. We’ll see you next time on Project Nitsuj.
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