Minami TakahashiTaishi MurataMitsuo IwataNozomi Furuki
Onsen Yousei Hakone-chan
Episode 1 also reviewed here: Anime 1st episodes 2015: O
Also known as: Young Hot Spring Fairy Hakone-chan
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2015
Director: Takeyuki Yanase
Writer: Korie Tomonaga, Momoko Murakami
Original creator: Daisuke Yui
Actor: Aoi Yuki, Ayaka Asai, Ayana Taketatsu, Fumi Morisawa, Haruo Satou, Kazunori Nomata, M.A.O, Megu Ashiro, Minami Takahashi, Mitsuo Iwata, Nozomi Furuki, Saki Ono, Shoko Haraguchi, Taishi Murata, Yuki Kuwahara
Keywords: anime
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 13 three-minute episodes
Url: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=17255
Website category: Anime 2015
Review date: 1 November 2016
Young Hot Spring Fairy Hakone-chan
It's quite nice. You'll delete the files after watching and there's no chance of you ever feeling the need to rewatch it, but it's okay. I enjoyed it to a reasonable degree. I kept expecting it to be funnier than it is, though. Apparently the original manga is a comedy, whereas this didn't make me laugh, to be honest.
It's not failed comedy, though. Failed comedy is painful. It's also not a fanservice show, despite the hot springs (and a boob dive in ep.1). It's just a pleasant and fairly pointless bit of fun with hot spring fairies. The cast are:
HAKONE (fairy, female, hundreds of years old) - a god who's usually in the form of a little girl. If she gets enough belief, though, her body can become ten years older for a short time. She's nice, if high-handed (e.g. using a derogatory nickname for Touya), and she's surprisingly willing to use her divine powers in front of witnesses. This will look spectacular, but almost immediately exhaust her. She gets appointed to be the ambassador of the local hot spring association. Favourite food: manjuu.
TOUYA (human male, about sixteen?) - The Male Character. We're told in ep.1 that he likes Haruna, but this is immediately forgotten.
HARUNA (human female, about seventeen?) - old friend of Touya's, with big boobs. She'll discover that she might possibly fancy him about halfway through the series, but the only thing she does about this is to emit a purple death aura of jealousy when Miya's draping herself all over him.
AKI (human female, fourteen) - Haruna's sister.
MIYA (fairy, female, hundreds of years old) - Hakone's rival. Will develop a crush on Touya and discover to her astonishment that she's becoming Hakone's friend. Her introduction had a line about a smell of sulphur, but she's not the devil. In real life some hot springs smell of sulphur, as it happens.
GOURA & ASHINOKO (fairy, female, young by fairy standards) - make trouble.
I'd assumed the show was being sponsored by the Hakone Tourist Board, given all the local namechecking. The hot springs are real, Gora Park is real, etc. I think my guess must be wrong, though, or at least I can't find any sign that it's right. Ah well. It gives the anime a little texture.
This is an utterly non-essential series, perhaps about average for a three-minute anime. Would I call it good? Not really. "Good" would be overstating it. Did I feel I was wasting my time? No, I watched it happily enough. The characters are fine, their antics are fine and the show's fine. I quite liked ep.9 (the ghost) and the finale, even if the latter's theoretically more dramatic events are in practice pure thistledown. They're the result of a non-serious fight against non-serious opponents. I enjoyed the pseudo-tragic ending and its inevitable subversion with a happy ending, but none of it ever mattered for a moment. It's all for form's sake. It's not even meant to have bite, but instead to be pleasant and reassuring.
I wouldn't recommend it. I wouldn't warn you against it. It's mostly on the right side of "pointless" vs. "enjoyable and nice".