I don’t know if this honestly bugs people. No, I know it does. But it’s hard to get a good read on something like this. My general question is: How far does a character’s relationship perception have to fail before one gives up? Or alternatively, how many characters and series did it take you to really get annoyed? While I was watching Ore no Kanojo to Osananajimi ga Shurabasugiru, Natsukawa asks Kidou, “Do you know if there’s anyone Chiwa likes?” and even tries to reaffirm that he doesn’t. The obvious and boring response from any male character is being oblivious to the advances of the girl in question. He follows up with much confidence: “No way.”
How much anime do I have to watch with this uninspired reaction? It would have been different if I couldn’t anticipate the exact wording, with even the exact Japanese and the intonation, but Kudou Eita miserably fails. Is it really that difficult to detect love? Perhaps one needs to put forth effort to have their love radar properly working. In Kudou’s case, I say that his anti-love stance is flimsy, but was enough for him to fall into his own mental trap. Because he firmly plants himself as anti-love, he believes that no one loves him either. (Or he’s just dumb, according and convenient to plot.) There’s going to be an episode explaining his anti-love parade. For sure. I just hope I haven’t fallen into my own mental trap of “maybe it’s a worthwhile reason”.
It really almost ends up in a loop of dumb logic. Main character is asked if anyone likes him. An obvious love interested has been shown previously, and the MC waves his hand in dismissal. If the MC does know, it’s not true and it was delusional. If the MC does know, and it is true, the girl is mistaken in her target. But being mistaken is the crux, and thus she slowly comes to love him. I have personally not seen a case of the MC being asked “Do you know if anyone likes you?” and seriously considers if any girls may have taken a fancy towards him, and thus spits out evidence: “Oh, wait. Now that I think about it…”
But then what will be the next line?
“No! No way, she couldn’t love me. That’s impossible. I secretly love her too! But will she love me back?” No, she doesn’t jerkwad. She’s gonna abuse you and take advantage of you.
Toradora circumvents this relatively cleanly, but I still remember there being some residual annoyance. It’s smart enough that the initial love setup follows through until the first confession AND afterwards, which is where the show really picks up. Taiga quite quickly confesses to Kitamura. But yeah, there was also that huge factor of how many episodes were left. You don’t really expect the series to end after they shove a love confession in the third episode and finish it right there. The love motivations behind all the characters in Toradora are not flimsy as other series’ characters. You see the different kinds, from each one, and how they mesh and interact into what is essentially the Love Trainwreck of Youth. It shows the flaws of love at a young age. Not the flaws of poorly written love from a young author. Maybe the fact that the intended demographic that should be enjoying this show fully is not what I currently am. Or am I using the word demographic in poor thought, and that I’m just getting angry, older and jaded like everyone else?
There’s so many possible variations that OreShura could-have-should-have done. I don’t care if the MC doesn’t know that someone already loves him. At least write him better lines.
I guess this show was finally the one to get up in my grill. Just how dumb to love do these male leads have to be? The “subtle” hints that girls leave are in your field of vision, dammit. Ugh. And don’t get me started on that Sakamaki Izayoi from the new show Mondaijitachi ga Isekai Kara Kuru Sou Desu yo. That 2-bit punk better lose in some way or else I’m gonna drop that show faster than my Lann can kill a giant polar bear.
.. But Yukari Tamura is in OreShura. I must continue to watch. :V