This time on Kis-My-BUSAIKU (キスマイ ブサイク), we finally got a female guest on the series – Ookubo Kayoko-san – and hopefully she can set the guys straight about will and won’t work to impress the 100 women judging their performances. To be sure, having male guests on, however insightful they are, hasn’t helped Nikaido-kun.

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The situation this time is another kiss scene, but since they gave us some other stuff in recent episodes, I can’t complain. Kissing the girlfriend in the kitchen is a pretty stock scene, though. If they plan to continue sprinkling in kissing scenes, I hope they’ll come up with something that’s a bit more innovative in the future.

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Will Fujigaya-kun, the current king of the rankings because of how many times he’s been at the top, be able to grab #1 again after being less consistent in the past month?

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They continue to reveal who got which rank in a 3-2-4-5-6-1-7 order, which I don’t like as much as the original order of 3-2-1-4-5-6-7, but it actually worked out this time. As usual, though, I’ll discuss how the guys did in alphabetical order to avoid giving too much away.

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Fujigaya-kun started out the scene helping the girlfriend, lifting up a plastic bag of heavier ingredients and then tying the apron for her. I’m sure this move had some of the other members kicking themselves for not thinking of it.

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After being close in, Fujigaya-kun risks putting some distance between himself and the girlfriend in order to speak to her face-to-face instead of having her turn around from her cooking. He makes sure to watch as she cooks even when they’re not talking. Throughout, the dialogue between them maintains the impression that they’re a young couple – it’s  very casual with the short phrases characteristic of regular speech.

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After sweet-talking her a bit, he swoops in for the standard hug from behind (if any of the members doesn’t do this, I’ll be shocked). It wasn’t the smoothest move ever, but it got good comments.

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From this point on, it felt a bit contrived to me – much more like a scene being played out than the solid portrayal of a real couple they started out with. But I guess if you want to get the judges’ hearts pounding, the gap between the casual beginning and the sweeping romantic finale helps.

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Ookubo-san offered some cogent thoughts after Fujigaya-kun’s scene, especially regarding the hug-from-behind.

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Senga-kun said he preferred to hug from below. Will he get Ookubo-san’s approval for his performance or not?

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Kitayama-kun flipped things around completely – he’s in the kitchen cooking and the girlfriend enters to help out. This reversal starts out well . . .

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. . . but the fact that Kitayama-kun seems to be going about his business without making much eye-contact, his odd manner of speaking, as well as the way he breaks an egg with one hand start to turn things sour. The judges noted that he only prepared food for one person. The worst, though, was the way he sneaked the kiss without any setup – he might as well have just kissed her right away for all the emotional impact that had.

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Miyata-kun got off to a bad start with sloppy posture (not cool) and a whiny tone that made it sound like he was complaining. Nobody likes to hear someone complaining while they’re cooking – it just ruins the atmosphere and cooks are as sensitive to that as artists – but Miyata-kun actually made it worse by complaining that he was hungry. He came off as spoiled. If someone started on that track with me, they’d be fixing their own dinner.

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His setup involved the girlfriend cutting herself – already patronizing because it implies that she can’t handle a knife – but then he has to come to her rescue for the trivial cut. That’s just . . . ugh.

And then he makes things worse by going all vampire on it:

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Oh . . . dear. You know, I bet if she was left to handle it herself, she’d have cleaned it off and gotten some antibiotic ointment and a band-aid like a sensible person. After a long time with his mouth on her finger, he spat something out at the sink. Did he think there was some poison involved?

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He does eventually bring a band-aid, but neglects the fact that his spit is not a disinfectant. Do not let this man administer first aid!

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You would think it couldn’t get worse, but then when he went in for the kiss he grabbed her head – putting his hands over her ears to secure her in place as he docked his mouth over hers. It was so unfortunate an image, I’ll do Miyata-kun a favor and leave it out.

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Nikaido-kun walked in apologizing for being elsewhere while she started to do the dishes. Instead of letting her clean the knife, he takes it from him saying that it’s dangerous, cleaning it himself. That was extremely patronizing – she’s an adult, isn’t she?

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His ultimate ploy for the kiss was . . . hokey. It was such an old move that the judges saw it coming as soon as he said ‘desert’.

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Even Ookubo-san said it was amazingly old. In response, Nikaido-kun said Ookubo-san was “kowai” (scary). That’s not the right attitude to take when someone is giving you advice!

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Senga-kun started off on a very good note by the way he approached the girlfriend and his manner of speaking, which was full of positive words right away.

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He asked for a taste of what she was cooking – a gutsy move, because the facial expressions in reaction to the taste have to be finely calibrated to avoid giving the wrong impression or suggest that the “oishii” isn’t totally truthful. At the same time, the expressions can’t be so over-the-top as to be unrealistic or uncool.

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He gives the traditional hug from the back.

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And the final result for Senga-kun was a definite contender.

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Tamamori-kun looked a bit sloppy and tired walking in, but then started to help with the dishes.

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Of course, we’re all waiting for the Tamamori-kun twist – he can never do anything in the expected way, right? Well, he had a reason why he wanted to stick his hands in with hers, and considering the comments, the judges did not find this move slick. The timing was bad.

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It just seemed like he was trying to do a ring presentation scene in the kitchen rather than using the kitchen properly to get a kiss without a gift.

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Yokoo-kun walked in on the girlfriend cooking, but did so with a rushing step while commenting on how good the food smelled – as if excited by what she was making for him. This was the most direct cooking complement we got, and he also had the right expressions on his face as he looked at the food.

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He promises to handle the clean-up afterward.

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His lines are a bit hammy when he talks about how lucky he is, but his timing on the kiss was good.

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Ookubo-san had plenty of points to make after watching the videos, but I suspect that a lot of her reactions had to be cut out to fit the half-hour show time.

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After that, we got the usual Kis-My Yori Kakkoii segment in the last three minutes.

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The first one was an auto mechanic – certainly a cool job. On top of that, he had a pretty cool image  – sort of a gap from what one might expect from a grease monkey (using the term affectionately).

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He got shockingly few votes from the KMF2 members, though. Are they jealous?

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The second entry went with the Papa ploy, and also pulled off the Papa look.

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So, call it two solid entries this time, though the KMF2 members didn’t seem to think so. Again, I think there should be a prize for anyone who gets more than four or five votes, since then the members will perhaps be less flippant about their voting.

While the topic was a very standard and predictable one, I found the episode quite fun. It was once again very easy to see the differences between the performances and this remains one of the easiest shows for English-speaking viewers to get into. Translating the comments from the judges might be a good way to learn some parts of the language, too.

As long as we don’t proceed on a string of three kiss-related episodes or something like that, things are still looking good for this series. The KMF2 members are shouldering all the creative burden right now and doing a good job of it – coming up with interesting ways to tackle the prompts – but the people creating the prompts need to step it up.