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Manga / Kashimashi: Girl Meets Girl

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Kashimashi: Girl Meets Girl is a Yuri Genre manga written by Satoru Akahori (writer of Saber Marionette J, Sorcerer Hunters, and Maze Megaburst Space) and illustrated by Yukimaru Katsura. It ran in Dengeki Daioh from 2004 to 2007, and a 12-episode anime adaptation aired in 2006.

Hazumu Osaragi has been having a rough time lately. The object of his affections, Yasuna Kamiizumi, has just turned him down (though it probably doesn't help that she very literally can't see men). Climbing to the top of his favorite mountain to have himself a sulk, his day starts to look up when he gets to see something that few people ever see in their lives: a UFO!

It's just a shame about the whole "crashing on him and killing him" bit.

Luckily for Hazumu, though, the ETs found it in their hearts to stitch him back together... but being aliens, they don't have the best conception of human biology. And so, as they announce to the town, Hazumu Osaragi is reborn... as a girl! Not only does Hazumu have to adjust to her new life as a girl, but she also finds herself in the center of a Love Triangle between two other girls: the elegant but cold and withdrawn Yasuna, and Hazumu's tomboyish childhood friend Tomari Kurusu.

"Kashimashi" is both the name of the town and school where the series is set ("Kashima-shi") and the Japanese word for "noisy". A Japanese proverb holds that "when three women get together, it's noisy (kashimashi)," the joke being that the kanji for "kashimashi" contains three of the characters (no pun intended) for "woman" or "female." (You may remember Tomo from Azumanga Daioh quoting it.)

Hazumu provides a rare case of Gender Bender where the one whose gender has been bent doesn't seem to really care that much about the predicament. It's possible she is actually happier this way from the beginning without a lot of the protesting that would appear in other series. The love triangle in the show also gets presented in a pretty straightforward way, all but completely disregarding that the story is in fact about two girls who try to win the affection of another girl.

This manga provides examples of:

  • Against the Setting Sun: Used a few times throughout the series, usually with Hazumu and Tomari by the Artificial River Bank.
  • Ambiguous Gender Identity: There's significant evidence that Hazumu was a trans girl even before the accident, whether or not she was fully conscious of it. She was known for being feminine in not just looks but attitude (for instancing making a Childhood Marriage Promise to become Tomari's bride), doesn't protest at all about becoming biological female, and is very obviously happier this way.
  • Ambiguous Robots: Jan-puu is some kind of artificial lifeform. In the English dub, she's called a clone and thus a biological being. The subtitles are more ambiguous.
  • All Men Are Perverts: Asuta's attraction toward Hazumu is treated as such, which leads to some awkward situations, and even Asuta is embarrassed to be attracted toward his (formerly male) best friend.
    • Also Hazumu's dad, who seems waaaaay too into shared father-daughter special time (usually involving nudity or dad taking naughty pictures of Hazumu). Hazumu's mom will have none of it and will combat it with martial arts holds.
    • And when her mom isn't around, Jan-puu with her boxing glove bazooka is happy to help out to defend the modesty of her gender-bent crush.
  • Anvil on Head: Of the 10t weight variety.
  • Applied Phlebotinum
  • Artificial Riverbank: Tomari's favorite spot to go to, since she spent a lot of her childhood there with Hazumu.
  • Bag of Holding: The alien man uses one in one of the last episodes as he's gathering his stuff from Hazumu's room. It appears to be a large bag, and when he's done, the bag magically shrinks.
  • Beach Episode: Episode 7.
  • Beneath the Mask: Hazumu as a girl is now more free to act more feminine.
  • Bedmate Reveal: Hazumu wakes up to find Jan-puu curled up against her the day after the aliens move in.
  • Bicep-Polishing Gesture
  • Blank White Eyes
  • Blob Monster: During their ghost hunt, Asuta is introduced to and attacked by "Alien number 6" (Jan-puu's naming for him), a part of the alien crew of the ghost hunt. This alien does, according to Jan Puu, love tasty earthlings.
  • Blue with Shock: Happens a few times to a few characters, usually Hazumu.
  • Butt-Monkey: Asuta and Namiko.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: Averted with Hazumu while a guy, played largely straight with her as a girl, and with Yasuna and Tomari as well.
  • Cherry Blossoms
  • Childhood Friend Romance: Hazumu and Tomari in both the anime and manga. In the manga, Hazumu finally shakes off her indecisiveness and cries out for Tomari over Yasuna in the last chapter. The anime OVA episode is a bit more spectacular, both reversing the Unlucky Childhood Friend end of the previous episode and giving the two an elaborate wedding ceremony (Hazumu carries Tomari).
  • Childhood Marriage Promise: Hazumu and Tomari.
    • Fulfilled in the episode 13 OVA.
  • Clark Kenting: The alien man does this in episode 4 when he shows up as an assistant professor, and claims he's related to Hazumu.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Tomari starts to display this trope around episodes 4 and 5.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Namiko falls into this trope from time to time, usually right before falling down a hole or falling from her classroom.
  • Color Failure: Happens to Tomari and Hazumu's dad in episode 2.
  • Courtly Love: At least according to a French reviewer, who describes the central triangle as not so much carnal as similar to relationships found in Chrétien de Troyes's novels.
  • Cross-Popping Veins: Happens to Tomari a lot.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Ayuki
  • Declaration of Protection: By Tomari to Hazumu. Possibly foreshadowing the ending, considering the possible meanings of the phrase.
  • Different for Girls: Inverted - Hazumu mostly takes her change in stride; it's tomboy Tomari, of all people, who insists on giving her lessons in being a girl. Hazumu's only difficulty is when she has to buy her first bra.
  • Dirty Old Man: Hazumu's dad seems a bit too eager to want to take a bath with her. He also seems too interested in taking pictures as well.
  • Does Not Like Men: Yasuna and her inability to perceive men's faces (according to "Alien-san" in the manga, this is some kind of genetic disorder) keeps her from having any relationships with men. This also affects her relationships with other girls.
  • Dramatic Wind: The series could be a commercial for building windmills in Tokyo.
  • Dull Eyes of Unhappiness: Yasuna displays them from time to time. She displays them again in episode 11 after losing her ability to see women as well.
  • Dynamic Entry: Tomari does a hilarious one in episode 7.
  • Emotional Powers: A relatively mundane version: When Tomari is in her P.E. class/club and experiencing strong emotions (e.g. thinking about her relationship with Hazumu), she subconsciously mobilizes her hidden reserves (no superpowers) and is scoring school records, or at least amazement from her teacher.
  • Expressive Hair: Tomari's pigtails react when she's experiencing strong emotions.
  • Face Death with Dignity: In the manga, Hazumu, after she's informed she only has one month left to live.
  • Face Fault
  • Fanservice: The manga has a few omake with it. The anime seriously ups this quotient.
  • Festival Episode
  • First Girl Wins: It depends on which of the girls is viewed as first. Yasuna was the first introduced, but Tomari is Hazumu's childhood friend, and so knew Hazumu first.
  • First Kiss: Although it's seen in the very beginning, we don't get the context behind it until episode 5, when Yasuna explains to Hazumu about her condition of not being able to see men for some reason, and rejected him because she thought he would eventually end up that way to her as well.
  • Foe-Tossing Charge: Tomari whips these out to get through throngs of reporters.
  • For Science!: The alien man uses this excuse largely to stay and observe Hazumu and normal Earthling relations. Turns out he had a good reason. On his planet, his people have a condition similar to Yasuna, and he was there to see if The Power of Love could cure it, which it does at the end of episode 12.
  • Friendly Enemy: Yasuna and Tomari realize early on that they are rivals, but develop a friendship out of their mutual love for Hazumu.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: Played for Laughs with Asuta. The girls, even his best friend Hazumu, will often treat him as a less important character, such as inviting all the girls to a day at an aquarium (and even specifically telling him no), or planning an event at a local cafe, and not inviting him (although he happened to be there anyway coincidentally). However, at other events he does get invited, such as the beach, but is again not treated as important.
  • Gayngst: Very mild and mostly in the first manga volume, but it's still there (a concept apparently foreign to "Alien-san").
  • Gecko Ending: The manga hadn't finished yet when the anime was made.
  • Gender Bender
  • Genki Girl: Jan-puu.
  • The Glomp: Jan-puu likes to do this to Hazumu.
  • Gratuitous English: Mainly in the anime's OP ("eveybiddy, prease to meet you," etc.); the NASA scientists in the first episode speak correctly, but the wording is a bit... off. ("I'm afraid that that's the fact." "The estimated arrival point is... figured!")
    • Namiko-sensei seems to use this trope a lot as well, usually right before something happens to her.
  • Hidden Eyes: Hazumu always has these whenever she's shown as a male. Even as a young child. The audience only sees her eyes when she gets turned into a girl.
  • How We Got Here: The very first scene actually happens at the end of episode 5.
  • If It's You, It's Okay: Tomari has to grapple with this early on after Hazumu's gender switch.
  • Ignore the Fanservice: Hitoshi usually doesn't care about Namiko.
  • Imagine Spot: Several characters do this, usually Asuta and Hazumu's dad.
  • Innocent Fanservice Girl: Hazumu. Justified as she just turned into a girl and is therefore unfamiliar with how they should act, such as flapping her skirt to cool her legs, and asking Asuta to measure her bust size.
  • Invisible to Normals: The alien and Jan-puu to normal people. They only allow certain people to see them, such as Hazumu and her parents, although Namiko is able to sense the alien's presence at first.
    • Intangible Man: "Alien-san" does this during a ghost hunt in Hazumu's school to make it more realistic.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Used by several characters:
    • Ayuki is an interesting variant, as she seems to honestly prefer witnessing the beauty of Hazumu's relationship with Tomari or Yasuna rather than attempt to start up a relationship of her own.
    • Tomari used this to push Hazumu into trying for a Relationship Upgrade with Yasuna prior to the beginning of the series, but it results in Yasuna turning him down.
    • Yasuna does this in the OVA. She also gets help from all of the main characters.
  • Joshikousei
  • Jumping the Gender Barrier
  • Kimodameshi: Episode 8.
  • Large Ham: Paired with Running Gag, "Without a boyfriend for 35 years, I, Tsuki Namiko..." will fall down a hole.
  • Lethal Chef: Yasuna's curry in episode 7 was a bit too spicy for the human characters, but the alien man didn't seem to mind it.
  • Looming Silhouette of Rage
  • Love at First Sight: Combined with First Kiss, this is how Hazumu got killed. Jan-puu fell in love with Hazumu and rushed in to kiss her... in spaceship form at a hair under the speed of light.
  • Love Confession:
    • Hazumu gives one to Yasuna in the beginning, but she's rejected by her. Turns out that Yasuna has a condition where she is unable to see men, but was able to see Hazumu, and feared getting too close to him would make him "invisible" to her as well. As a result, Tomari uses that incident against her a couple of times later on when Yasuna starts getting too friendly with Hazumu again.
    • Asuta understandably thinks he got one in episode 7 from Hazumu, but it turns out he misinterpreted it.
  • Love Letter: Tomari gets love letters from other girls, to her annoyance.
  • Man-Eating Plant: A somewhat less deadly variant: Alien-san presents really amazing genetically altered sunflowers in biology class, who proceed to strangle Asuta and Namiko.
  • Matchmaker Crush: Tomari pushes Hazumu to confess to Yasuna... but then increasingly owns up to her own feelings after his genderswap.
  • Meaningful Name: Sora Hitoshi. It means spaceman.
  • The Mind Is a Plaything of the Body: Hazumu answers a lot of questions with "I really am a girl now." Then again, considering how feminine she was as a boy, it's always questioned about whether Hazumu is just freer to express that as a girl than as a boy.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Hazumu
  • Naked Apron: Ah, preparing for a barbeque at the beach - Asuta gets a fire going at a grill, and when he's done he turns to see Hazumu wearing an apron over... their bikini. He is, of course, pleasantly surprised - and then the group turns to see Hitoshi doing a completely played straight rendition of the trope, complete with heart-shaped apron.
    Hitoshi: Aprons aren't supposed to be worn like this?
    Asuta: Hurry up and wear something! And then apologize to all the apron-wearing women of the world! Apologize!
  • The Ojou: Yasuna
  • Parental Abandonment: Yasuna's parents are never around due to work and the fact that she deliberately distances herself from them because she has a strange condition where she's unable to see men, except Hazumu.
  • Pervert Dad: Played straight for the most part. Strangely enough, in one scene he gets to act like normal and doesn't seem unusual at all.
  • Pun-Based Title: The kanji 女 (pronounced onna) means "woman". Kashimashii is one possible pronunciation of the kanji 姦; this kanji is composed of three copies of 女, arranged in a triangle. So, the title can be interpreted as representing a triangle of three women. And to top it off, the place where the story is set is also called kashimashi, albeit written with different kanji: 鹿縞市, meaning "Kashima City". (Note that the original title of this manga is written phonetically, so it doesn't actually use the 姦 kanji, making it a Stealth Pun of sorts.)
  • Running Gag: Namiko-sensei falling into a hole or from a high place, and Asuta getting beat up by Tomari.
  • Scary Shiny Glasses: The alien man's default look.
  • Second Law of Gender-Bending: Hazumu is much happier after being resurrected with a female body, mostly because she was very feminine before and no longer feels pressured to act otherwise. She may have actually been a transgender girl to begin with.
  • Seiza Squirm: Hazumu has no problems with the position, but Asuta and Tomari can't pull it off very long.
  • Shared Life Energy: Hazumu is crushed by an alien spaceship and resurrected as a girl. The story goes on to say that as a male, Hazumu had run out his "fate gene" and would have died at that time of some cause or another, and that restoring him as a girl gave him a little more time. Hazumu could extend her new life by finding a "donor", basically, falling in love and linking her destiny with someone else, in this case Tomari.
  • Shipper on Deck: Hitoshi Sora
  • Shopping Montage: Guess who needs a new wardrobe.
  • Shounen
  • Shout-Out: Janpuu calls Hazumu "Onee-nii-sama" (a combination of terms for a brother and sister), a reference to the author's previous work Maze Megaburst Space, where it was also used on a gender-bent character.
  • Single-Target Sexuality: Both Yasuna and Tomari love Hazumu even after he's a she.
  • Sleep Cute: At the end of the Beach Episode, natch.
  • Snow Means Love: Even in summer!
  • Spaceship Girl: Jan-puu-chan
  • Stalker with a Crush: Namiko to Hitoshi.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: The alien man is a master of this, often to the surprise of Hazumu.
  • Super-Powered Robot Meter Maids
  • Talking to Plants: Hazumu
  • Teleporters and Transporters: "Alien-san" and Jan-puu, which freaks out and startles Hazumu on a regular basis.
  • The One Guy: Asuta functions as much in the main group's social circle, and one of the manga omake reveals that Hazumu's genderbend has resulted in the other male member of the gardening club becoming this. He wasn't happy about it.
  • There Are No Therapists: Even by Japanese standards, this is a particularly egregious example. Hazumu gets killed by a spaceship landing on her, comes back to life through alien intervention, gets turned into a girl from the DNA up, gets her entire ordeal broadcast to the entirety of the people of Japan, is plagued by the paparazzi, exposed to questionable changes in care by her parents, and the only help she gets is from her childhood friend and the girl that rejected her in the first place.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Tomari uses Yasuna's rejection of Hazumu and hurting her feelings as the reason why the latter shouldn't be trying to spend so much time with Hazumu anymore.
  • Third Law of Gender-Bending: Hazumu readily takes on feminine traits after receiving a female body because Hazumu was already feminine as a boy, and was possibly a transgender girl to begin with. Regardless, Hazumu is fine with feminine clothes, but prefers male/unisex ones even as a girl.
  • Tomboy: Tomari
  • Training Montage: Hazumu's "girl lessons" in episode 2.
  • Tsundere: Tomari
  • Unrequited Love: Both Tomari and Yasuna feel this way from time to time. Played straight with Asuta and Namiko, although the end of the OVA hints that the alien man may be in fact returning the feelings as they seem to be preparing to kiss each other before turning invisible.
  • The Unwanted Harem: Everyone, regardless of sex, species, or relation, wants Hazumu.
  • Verbal Tic
  • Vague Age
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Tomari gets called out on this in the OVA when she repeatedly tries to avoid or ignore Hazumu.
  • What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: The alien's main reason for sticking around. They need to relearn love (and all other emotions) to restore their species' desire to procreate.
  • When the Clock Strikes Twelve: Near the end of the manga, Hazumu is told she only has one month to live.

Alternative Title(s): Kashimashi Girl Meets Girl