It has been previously established that the Ame-iro Kouchakan rates very high on the ‘ole Yuri-o-meter. In fact, it seems to draw female couples like bees to lilies and yes, I’m mixing my metaphors, thank you.
So, it will come as no surprise that Mana-chan-sensei from the earlier mini DCD, “Pink Princess” has taken to doing her work at the Amber Teahouse. The Yuri atmosphere is perfect for her to get in the St. Lotecia groove. She loves watching Seriho and Sarasa dance around each other, She loves to love/hate her devoted editor Shiko and she just loves Yuri. And so we find ourselves in “White Engage,” the Drama CD that comes with the deluxe edition of Volume 1.
The conflict here is small. And predictable. A sudden wrench is thrown in Mana-chan’s and Shiko’s working relationship that causes a crisis between them. Seriho and Sarasa are able to help the two of them work it out. They do work it out, rather creatively, I thought. And with a wonderfully voice acted kiss. Tamura Yukari gets extra super-duper shiny stars from me for making it sound like a good kiss.
Their reconciliation brings about a conversation on weddings. Which in turn brings about a conversation about Sarasa and Seriho being engaged. Sarasa is speechless and Seriho is puzzled, until Mana-chan calmly points out that Seriho *did* ask Sarasa to stay by her side for 50 years and what do ya call that if not a proposal? Seriho is surprised, but not at all unpleased to think of it that way. Okay, then. They are officially engaged. ^_^
Haru is tortured by just about everyone when they learn that an underclassman has confessed to Hinoka. “Yosh, yosh,” they all pat her shoulder to comfort her, completely ignoring her protestations of really not caring at all. Even Seriho pats her comfortingly and they all laugh at her when she insists on this facade that is probably totally true.
The bonus talk track was win. Mizuki Nana and Yukana sound crazy blushy embarrassed as they discuss how crazy, blushy embarrassed this whole script made them. This is followed by the other actresses talking about the whole love-love atmosphere, and how the girls-only love story made them feel. Since they have all now done this a number of times, it wasn’t possible to fall back on the usual trope-y comments, so there’s an air of yes, well, we have to actually talk about this a bit, this time. It was fun.
The packaging for the CD is quite lovely – and includes a nice little extra manga. The CD is once again decorated to look like a lace doily. I do have an issue with the lack of stability in the packaging – the CD keeps falling out. Not a huge thing. Also, there’s was an odd glitch when I first listened to the CD, in which the tracks played in reverse order. I took it out and put it back in and it was fine but still…totally surreal there for a bit. Oh, and the end of the extra manga had the most lovely picture of Mana-chan-sensei and Shiko, so I added it here. Click the pic for the full size version. (This is in part for my wife who wanted a copy.)
Art – 8
Story – 8
Characters – 9
Yuri – 9
Service – 1 (For all the Fujieda fans who are all REALLY nice guys who like cute things.)
Overall – 9
And there you have it. An hour of Yuri fun at the Amber Teahouse. What more could we ask for, really? ^_^