Title: St. Luminous Misshion High
Genre: Drama, Mystery, Schoolkids
number of episodes: 13
What to Expect: One good mystery, and a lot of inflection on what drives us as people, some amusing situations
Plot = A
Characters = B+
Music = C+
Overall = A-
General Outlook: St. Luminous starts out with what seems like the tired romantic cliche of a lone man somehow ending up in a all woman area. Well in this case, its a lone man and his best friend Ryuuzo and they head to St. Luminous as transfers and also as the main character becoming the Chairman of the school. As per his grandfathers will he arrives at the school, only to find himself amidst a scandal as one of the students has mysteriously vanished. To make matters worse Kahei is certain he met the girl who is vanished just before he entered the school. Now Kaihei has to try and live up to his grandfathers wishes, and lead the school as the chairman. Still he has to deal with pervert teachers, strict woman, being a student himself, and then the attention of all the girls at school. It doesnt help that he has forced his best friend to dress as a woman(as part of his condition to come into the school). Even when more girls start dissapearing Kaihei is determined not to give up, and with the help from some mysteroius allies, and his new friends at school he just may get to the bottom of it. He only has until Graduation to find them all, and the school year looks like it will be far from uneventful…
Music: So-so. Its your typical foray of drama music, complete with the few bar theme they play at commercial breaks. The only music of note is the ending theme, “Labyrinth” by Ali Project. Also is the few peices of music that the musician’s play, but otherwise its just fitting background music. However, like with many dramas, mysterys, the general theme(those few bars of music) still grown on me, and i cant say i hated any of the music. Just in no way did any of it stand out.
Characters:We’ll focus on the main characters, the missing girls are discusses as the series progresses and i wont ruin any mysterys that way.
Kaihei- The poor sap who gets pulled into this whole mess. He is still confused as to why his grandfather placed him as Chairman since he hasnt seen him since he was a child. He is rather kind, sometimes naive, but with a good soul. He promises to clear this mystery up before graduation
Ryuuzo- Kaihei’s best friend, and poor fool who thinks he can get into the all womans school since his friend is chairman. Too late to backout, he is forced to attend the school disguised as a woman. In his own words “Its like a lone wolf being surrounded by food and being told when to eat…” His crossdressing is a bit amusing, as his tendency to act manly, beat up perverts and the like would seem to give him away. Made even more amusing by the fact that the school thinks he/she and Kaihei are dating.
Sister Akane- The chief sister in charge of the school. Many sisters(aka nuns) help run the school, and she works as a second in command, helping out Kaihei. She seems to have some mysterys to her as well however, and if she will be a help or not is yet to be seen.
Teachers- Lumped together as only a few ever get real character treatmant and screentime. Noticebly would be Jim the pervert(who teaches electrical enginerring) and the uber strict Boken weilding gym teacher Kadou. The other teachers generally only care about their own classes and rarely offer help in any way. I dont know why but everytime i see the math teacher i want to hit him.
Grandma- The school Director, after the chairman she is in charge of decision making and so forth. However she seems content to spend most of her time sleeping during the meetings and playing her giant bass violin string thingy.(i dont know music ok, sue me) Is rather mysterious and sort of helps her young grandson everynow and then, unknowingly or not is the question. Always watching the going ons of the school from the chairmans office with her binoculars.
Moe-chan- An old woman who rides a bicycle/cart around campus and smokes all the time from an old pipe. She appears wherever and whenever she wants, usually to offer some form of cryptic advice to Kei-chan. She lives nearby the school but is always found on the campus somewhere.
Student body- Most of the school finds the new chairman cute and worthy of chatter and rumours, but many come to be his friends and they all lend their support to him in tough times. Groups like the broadcasting class, and the cooking class are most prominent in the roles they play.
My Thoughts(and spoilers): I first got this because i read more on the mystery aspect of it than anything else. The first thought i had reading the concept was it was a Love HIna rip-off, and im glad i ignored that. It is anything but. Luminous gives a great mix of humour, drama, mystery and all kinds of introspection. As well as the broadly hinted at Yuri themes of love and such. I liked how they played up the whole supernatural angle as well. They made it seem perfectly logical the dissapearances up until the 3rd girl vanishes at the end of one episode right in front of the viewers eyes. As they build up, and soon a group of 5 students vanish in front of everyones eyes, the tension is set just right. They could have taken it some mundane route of generic kidnapping, but i like how the supernatuarl focus not only led you across the girls lives but Kaihei’s as well. I was a lil surprised how it ended, with 3 girls still missing. And though the mystery is solved, they still dont say “exactly” where the girls are. I did enjoy the final credits as well, where Ryuuzo who is finally able to not be in drag has to tell the girls on the beach he is Ryuu’s brother. Which leads me to one last thing. Ryuko one of the girls falls in love with Ryuuzo. However they hinted that perhaps she knew he was a man, but perhaps not. So im confused as to the direction that could have went. Especially since Kaiheis cousin blurts out her love for Ryoko. A lot of the girls randomly come out so to speak near the end, only to cover it up with other ideas(well the artist i can buy as being bi-sexual). Still a great series, short and good fun.
Where to get it Currently: Through Fansubs. Anime-Keep did a wonderful job with the versions i watched, and im not sure if there are any other varaints out there. So seearch your local BT channels for it.(or just directly head to Anime-keep to find em)
By Darknight ZO