- Alt. Name
- NakaImo, One of Them is My Younger Sister!, Who is Imouto?
- Release Date
- Summer 2012
- No. of Episodes
- Studio Gokumi
- Light Novel
Nakaimo – My Little Sister Is Among Them! is a 2012 Romantic Comedy Mystery anime series from the Japanese animation studio, Studio Gokumi. While this studio has been reviewed multiple times for its many series, some newer series tend to fair very well online. However, when a series focuses on the mystery niche of anime, it tends to be a mixed set of reviews, and rightfully so for multiple reasons. Can a studio that has not been consistent in producing creative and entertaining anime series create something worthy of viewers’ time? Mystery series are one of the most complicated story-focused areas to write about in any form. Still, if the source material is good enough and the team behind the adaptation has the capabilities, it should be a beautiful experience. Or it could crash and burn.
Shougo Mikadono’s father has just passed away, and now he must become the head of Mikadono Group, his father’s company. After completing the training to take over, there is just one other stipulation he must adhere to: he will need to find a girl he loves at his new school and marry her by the time he graduates high school. Shougo constantly questions how he can find a girl to fall in love with within such a short amount of time. Though he’s eager to accept the criteria, the teenager enrolls and quickly garners the student body’s attention, whether he wants it or not.
When Shougo transfers to Miryuin Private Academy, it seems like he has many girls to choose from, such as Konoe Suruma, the class representative, and his first new friend. Miyabi Kannagi, a standoffish but kind girl; Rinka Kunitachi, the student council vice president; Mei Sagara, who runs a café and dresses like a witch; and Mana Tendou, the student council president. However, there is one major complication: one of these students is his long-lost half-sister, and he has no idea which one, so how can he become romantically involved with any of them? Can Shougo restrain his youthful desires while lustful beauties throw themselves at him in school, at home, and even in his very own bed long enough to figure out who among them is his hidden little sister?
While the most considerable trouble this story has going against itself is that the story is rather basic on paper. Still, once the viewer begins watching this series, they quickly figure out that’s it’s not the problem at all. The plot is intriguing and has a decent level of writing that is easy to follow at times, especially regarding the mysterious elements. With each episode, the viewer will be led down different paths that will make them question and request their opinions on who the sister may be. Having a mystery anime series can make the viewers question their guesses multiple times within the series is an enjoyable way to experience any series.
Another positive aspect of this anime series is that the romantic comedy elements are evenly placed for most. The comedic elements are sprinkled appropriately, and the romance is heavy enough to balance the two, which is always good to have, especially if this is someone’s first anime series. The series does give the appearance of being taken straight from a book, which it is, but the ability to create something that doesn’t bore people is positive in its approach. However, viewers should appreciate that Nakaimo gives the impression that it’s going to share the focus of all the main female cast—having any anime series that touches on any harem, romantic comedy, or even slice of life genre if there are more than two female characters the series tends to force the others to drop off the face of the earth.
However, when it comes to the negatives within “Nakaimo – My Little Sister Is Among Them!” there are some major red flags that anyone wanting to watch this series must know about before they get their hopes up. Though no series is perfect for everyone, and this series is no different, blatantly apparent that the writing is very generic. The story itself is not a defective area of the show, but what is terrible is that the series is very predictable. Having a mystery anime series become very predictable is troublesome, partly due to the viewer questioning the reason their watching the series if they know what’s going to happen, and partly due to watchability after the series is completed. If a story is easily predictable, the viewer most likely won’t want to rewatch the series again, especially if the series is a mystery.
Perhaps this negative aspect isn’t the worst on the list, but what doesn’t help the show is that the pacing is weird throughout the series. Nakaimo has one of the most bizarre progressions in anime, but what sets this aspect from being just bad is that the writers didn’t care about the story. The series has no actual character development, nor does it have any organic conversation between characters. But what indeed sends this poorly created story over the edge of misery is that every opportunity this series had to correct itself, all it could do was poorly execute a mediocre series of events. If the viewer can pay attention to several minutes for the first couple of episodes, the viewer will immediately figure out who the secret person will be revealed.
Even though the plot of this anime was mediocre, the artwork is another story altogether. When it comes to the ecchi genre, the art is crucial and can even make or break a series for its viewers. While this series has good artistic talent behind it, the art overall is nothing too spectacular. Though if one believes this to be negative, it’s most defiantly not! So many anime series that are fan favorites have less than stunning artwork behind them. The artwork is colorful and nicely created, very pleasing to the eyes. However, the art is what one would expect when it comes to any fan service anime series. To sum up, the conclusion would be to say there’s nothing jaw-dropping about this series’ artwork.
Comparing the animation production of the series to any other area of the series is a little unfair; the quality is exceptionally well. The opening theme song is appropriately titled “Choose me♡Darling” and is sung by the Japanese pop idol group StylipS, which specializes in performing anime soundtracks. Having a group able to sing a catchy song and keep the viewers entertained is one thing. But having a group that has done pieces for series such as High School DxD franchise, Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Lilya, and even Gundam Build Fighter is on a higher level for any anime series. Though the opening animation is a little outdated and has not aged that well, it’s still entertaining and a nice piece of animation.
The interesting portion is that the ending theme song of the series gives the impression that this is the opening. Usually, the closing theme is slower and softer in tone, but this series
chose to go with a fast-paced poppy tune which is attractive. The animation is on par with the opener, though it could easily be argued as a watered-down version of animation due to the many still shots used. However, for a series of this caliber, it somehow works though using the cheaper quality of animation tends to backfire in the long run, and that’s what happened in this series. The animation quality is good, but when the animators cut corners, it is easily identifiable.
When an unexpected potential viewer looks at the poster for this series, they’ll immediately realize that the cover girls are the show’s focal point. However, this series has a somewhat large cast of characters. Shogo Mikadono is the male protagonist who is the heir of the Mikadono Group. To take over as chairman of the Group, he must fulfill specific requirements like graduating from school, being a standup young man, and finding his life partner. Throughout the series, the viewers will notice that he is best described as the prime definition of the word dull. He has a lot of potentials to be something within the series but only takes one-third of the opportunities given to him, and that’s being exceptionally generous.
Konoe Tsuruma is a black-haired young girl who attends the same school as Shogo and the first friend he makes on the first day of his new life. She is best described as being happy-go-lucky; she is very curious and believes in the destined meetings of people. She happens to be in the same class as Shogo and the class representative, which helps them both out a lot. Unlike Shogo, she is a little more developed but has nothing to write home about. A lot of her character is unwritable without giving potential spoilers to the series away, and half of them aren’t even part of the central premises.
Miyabi Kannagi is another classmate of Shogo and a member of the swimming club. She is standoffish at the beginning of the series, but she changes to a more comforting yet jealous character as the show progresses. Her character is interesting because there isn’t much to go off within her character arc. She has a past that is “unique to her,” but every other character within this series does. However, most of the female characters within this series cannot be written about due to spoiler territory.
Rinka Kunitachi is the blonde first-year student council vice president of Miryuin Private Academy, and it is heavily implied that she was brought up in a Nobel family. After Shogo transfers into Miryuin, Konoe calls her a “princess to the core.” However, Runka keeps Mana in line and is shown to be quite good at dancing. She is one of the more distant characters within the series, which is interesting mainly because she is one of the more competitive characters of the bunch. Having the opposite characteristics is a little entertaining and was somewhat unexpected.
Mana Tendou is the student council president of Miryuin Private Academy. She has a childish personality and is generally on the quieter side except for significant events where she gets excited and tends to be more outgoing and loud. Outside of these, there is not much to talk about, which is a shame. Mei Sagara is a silver-haired third-year girl who dresses up as a witch. She runs the Lyrical Sister Café, which she describes as “a dream-like café where anyone can become an older brother or older sister!” She is one of the few characters who knows Shogo’s sister’s identity but refuses to tell him for multiple reasons.
Overall the amount of character development within Nakaimo – My Sister Is Among Them is shockingly low. Each female character has one personality trait, and that’s the only thing the characters will have. The writers didn’t give them anything else to work on, just a pretty face. If someone is hoping for better characters, please just read the dictionary; at least the words used in that book were valid.
As the series begins, the viewers will hope for an entertaining show, which in some respects, they received. But as Nakaimo progresses, they quickly realize that this series is a classic bait and switch, especially when it comes to any form of entertainment. The story is flat, the art is what one would assume, but the terrible number of characters takes this anime over the edge of terribleness. If a viewer can get through the entirety of the series once, that’s an accomplishment within itself, and one would hope they’d never want to watch it again. Don’t expect anything other than generic material that any fanfiction writer could do better if they just started writing.
Cody Senpai is the creator of BakaNow, an anime review website that specializes in spoiler-free reviews for everyone. He is an avid anime watcher who has traveled to Japan numerous times to not only experience the culture and history but also to build friendships with people through a common interest. He is an avid animation fanatic from birth and even went on to major in communication to help share the importance of the stories we love to watch and listen to. Cody lives in Denver, Colorado and loves to do anything adventurous.