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Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun – 09

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「0と1」 (Zero to Ichi)
“Zero and One”

Today’s episode has a feel reminiscent of earlier episodes: Haru and Mitty have finally dispelled the tense aura between themselves as they return back to a shenanigan and straight man duo. However, the other fronts of the show, which have taken a back seat for the main couple, have now come to fruition.

Firstly, Natsume has had her heart swooped over by Mi-chan! If subtlety last episode wasn’t clear enough, it’s glaringly obvious here: look at how that blush and cheerful energy emanates from her! When Natsume first described how she had the “problem” of having guys constantly attracted to her, or that she considered Mitty to be her first real “friend”, the tone of the show downplayed the importance and seriousness these facts were to her character. Come this episode though, and a serious flashback puts things into perspective. Natsume problem of attracting too many guys is no laughing matter, as it explains Natsume’s androphobia and her lack of friends. Girls can be so cruel at times–not saying that guys can be cruel too, but the emotional warfare that’s often employed by female schoolgirls in the anisphere is a biting trope that’s no exception here. It makes sense why Natsume’s reference to Mitty’s lack of reaction or “care” is a positive in her perspective: Natsume’s ridiculous guy magnet elicits no reaction, good or bad, from Mitty, allowing Natsume to feel a certain clearness, a calming neutrality. Although Natsume could find friendlier people, Natsume’s irrational fear that the friendliness is a facade that’s hiding a judgmental nature prevents her from doing so.

However, come Mi-chan to defend her from her troubled past, and suddenly there’s someone who’s actively standing up for Natsume! Add onto the fact that Mi-chan is a pretty confident guy with a nice build, and well, emotional Natsume has fallen head over heels for a nice guy–someone who’s defending her without any strings attached. While this might be good on its own, poor Sasayan misses yet another opportunity out of hesitation. He’s observant, that’s for sure, but unfortunately that doesn’t translate into action fast enough. Although this episode didn’t emphasize his reaction, previous episodes show that feeling of helplessness is still present behind that smiling face of his. SASAYAN YOU FOOL! Step up your game or else you’ll lose to the mature older guy with a cool demeanor! Don’t play around with your past love life with Haru in front of Natsume, even if it’s joking! (though I’ve got to admit, that was pretty funny)

Meanwhile, Yamaken’s’s tsundere meter is at maximum…which is actually pretty funny to watch. Male tsunderes: can they compete with female tsunderes? Yes they can. Although Yamaken’s rich attitude gets in the way of him properly interacting with Mitty, his wisdom and eventual niceness still shine through, and are noticed, though not in the way he probably wants them to be. For Mitty, Yamaken is stuck in a friend zone, though the faces Shizuku makes to establish this friendzone are…d’awwwwwww! Yamaken, I feel for you so much man, but you are so boned against Haru, who is stuck viewing you as a threat. Although Yamaken is noble in subtly declaring his love while establishing distance from Mitty, such a distant approach may not last for long, at least in my experience and observation. At least the field is equalized as the male counterpart of Ooshima…though at this rate, it looks like OoshimaxYamaken will be a potential couple, since no one else is available.

Finally, this leaves us with our main couple, Mitty and Haru, who for the most part feel comfortable around each other again. While Mitty may have forgotten (for a month no less) about thinking over the relationship, Haru has thankfully engaged his patience mode, taking satisfaction with the status quo and doing sweet things for Mitty, in his own crazy way. While breaking into Mitty’s house was sort of iffy, his lack of malicious intention makes it forgivable. Haru still has Shizuku’s best intentions in mind, even though his stupidity may stall the fruits of his actions. For now, Haru has been tamed, though excessive interference by Yamaken may tip him back into a more unstable state.

Mitty, on the flipside, continues to explore herself and the emotional side of life, with some assistance from Yamaken. She continues to analyze herself, both past and present, in order to deal with her new acceptance of instability outside of academics. While it was great that we saw Mitty with her hair down, the important developments this episode involved Mitty’s relationship with her parents. While she may not dislike her father, she definitely views him in an inferior light as compared to her mother. Shizuku’s father may have provided the emotional support that Mitty needed, but such notions were secondary in Mitty’s mind to the dedication and sacrifice of Mitty’s mother. However, now that Shizuku has to deal with areas of life she can’t be completely in control of, her father may have a bigger role to play in the future, such as explaining just exactly why Mitty’s father and mother fell for each other.

But let me ask you guys: what do you think of the metaphors that Mitty uses to explain her life? Can you guys follow with her thought processes, and agree about how she differentiates from a stable academic/work life to the instability of social life? Do you guys think Yamaken is a pretty interesting character or can you still not stand him? Finally, do you all think that Natsume will pull off something with Mi-chan next episode? She seemed pretty giddy for winter break…so who knows what’ll happen next!

Full-length images: 4, 10, 16, 18, 23, 25, 29, 31, 34, 36.

 

Omake

Tonari no Kaibutsu kun   09   Omake 01 Tonari no Kaibutsu kun   09   Omake 02 Tonari no Kaibutsu kun   09   Omake 03

End Card

Tonari no Kaibutsu kun   09   End Card
November 26, 2012 at 2:07 pm
36 comments »
  • November 26, 2012 at 2:17 pmShadiic

    Is that a picture of one of the girls from K-On in the background of first picture?

    Anyways I wonder if we’ll learn more about Natsume chan

    • November 27, 2012 at 4:29 pmvul

      It sounded like she was singing Setsugai Se Yo, so I’d guess it was from DMC

  • November 26, 2012 at 2:44 pmHakumeiJin

    It was nice to see some other characters explored this time. Also it’s nice that Natsume is more energetic although I’m not sure what her current extremely obvious crush will lead to. Also about Sasayan missing his chance, strangely enough he doesn’t seem interested at all? I wonder if he has any traumatic event in his past as well considering how easily he joined the group despite seeming to be pretty popular with everyone before.

    And Yamaken is such a tsundere :D While I feel sorry for him it’s nice to see that he doesn’t even register on Mitty’s radar and if he does it’ll probably Haru’s fault. It’s kinda interesting how he instantly suspected him, I wonder if it’s past experience.

    • November 27, 2012 at 12:34 amI Love Kumin-Senpai

      HINTS ON EPISODE 1 – INTRODUCTION!!

  • November 26, 2012 at 2:48 pmKira526

    Great episode! It’s nice to see Haru and Mitty back on track with their usual shenanigans. I would gladly comment on your Natsume question Zanibas, but as someone who’s read the manga I probably shouldn’t ^^;;; I can say this though: I’m really looking forward to the next episode! The Christmas chapter is great and I’m excited to see it in anime form.

    As for Yamaken, I didn’t like his character at first, but he really grew on me. His tsundere moments are too funny and he was making me smile this entire episode. It’s not easy when you realize you like your friend’s “girlfriend” especially when that friend is HARU. Yamaken might want to sleep with one eye open after that sort of confession to Haru lol.

    As for Mitty’s metaphors, I actually relate to them. I was really similar to her in high school (to a lesser extent of course). I drew a line between school work and my social life. I have to admit, much like Mitty, I am a classic control freak. And as Mitty brought up in this episode, it’s much easier to control the outcome of your academic life. Whereas, when it comes to relationships, there might not be a right or wrong answer. So, just as Mitty did, I focused on the aspects of my life that I could control rather than getting caught up in relationships. And once you get used to that mentality, it’s hard to break free. So I can definitely see how her relationship with Haru is shaking her confidence. He challenges everything she originally stood for. And while she might not realize it yet, that kind of challenge is what she needs to move forward in life.

    On a lighter note, I face palmed when Sasayan missed his second chance. That poor guy can’t catch a break can he? Haha, this show has some seriously great characters.

    • November 26, 2012 at 8:46 pmCherrie

      I was so excited when I saw that the preview for next episode was Christmas!! I love Christmas episodes =)

  • November 26, 2012 at 2:54 pmMichael

    Good review as always and now I am looking forward to the next episode even more.

  • November 26, 2012 at 2:58 pmMegas

    I’m wondering how any of these weirdos can actually LIKE Shizuku – oh, I just answered my own question didn’t I (weirdos). I attest dealing with Shizuku to cop chases / car wrecks: Love to watch them but hate to be involved in them. It takes a mighty weird person to like being in a wreck too, hehe.

    If you want to know more about Natsume, there’s a ton of foresight in the first few seconds of the first episode. So they’ll definitely get around to it.

  • November 26, 2012 at 3:35 pmahomine

    cute….tsundere yamaken n/////////n

  • November 26, 2012 at 3:42 pmrufe

    Has there been any indication thus far that Sasayan is attracted to Natsume? or rather that he is aware of his feelings if he is…

  • November 26, 2012 at 3:44 pmMisa

    I actually like Yamaken; don’t get me wrong I like Haru as well, but I think it’ll be interesting to see if/when he stirs things up for Shizuku and Haru.

  • November 26, 2012 at 3:52 pmramblinkat

    Cute and funny ep this week, though I can’t believe that Mitty forgot about her ‘relationship’ with Haru for an entire MONTH oh man xDD Hope Sasayan can hurry up and woo Natsume or he seriously will lose to Mi-chan haha and tsundere Yamaken was indeed cute though I can’t help but feel that having this extra ‘rival’ was a little was unneeded since come on, we already saw how poor Oshima has failed in comparison to their respective love interest, and its not like this main pairing doesn’t have enough road blocks already lol but y’know despite the cliche I actually do hope we see a little Oshima/Yamaken in the future, the more I think on it, it could be a really nice pairing! Anyone else agree/disagree?

    • November 26, 2012 at 6:31 pmNishimura

      I’m actually kind of hoping that both Yamaken and Oshima get their preferred loved interest. There’s just something about Haru that rubs me the wrong way. He’s portrayed as this broken puppy, but in more than one occasion we’ve seen a side of him that even Mitty seems to sweep under the carpet. It’s just not particularly healthy. While yes, underneath it all he has a heart of gold, the fact that he still seems to treat Mitty like an object (one that only he can have) irritates me. However, I do feel like Mitty would be the only one who could actually handle someone like Haru. While I’m rooting for Oshima (and Yamaken) I feel that in her current mental state Haru would crush her.

      Also I would just love to see the mangaka pull one over on us and switch the main couple. I don’t want just a stir up, I want an actual switcheroo. It’s just not something you see in shoujo and the one time I did it really made the story (see Sand Chronicles).

  • November 26, 2012 at 4:20 pmswordhack4

    Great ep!! Mitty should keep her hair down more often. She looks amazing. (I like girls with their hair down, or in a pony tail over the shoulders.)

    Lol I actually like Yamaken more now, tsunderes FTW!!

    Nice to see other characters shine, and poor Natsume. They need to leave her alone :/.

    Now…anytime I’m asked if I did it…..I’ll smile.

    And I love the tension between Haru and Yamaken at the end. And that OST that played with it too.

    Reading the manga, on chapter 24……..I. Love. TnK-k.

  • November 26, 2012 at 4:37 pmlialiakicks

    “Do you like Mitty?”
    “Is that a problem?”
    …did you seriously just ask that Yamaken? OF COURSE IT’S A PROBLEM!!! (and yet, I cannot dislike him ;o;) Everyone in this show is just… great!

    Sasayan is a nice guy. :) Er, joking about his sex life (or lack thereof) in front of a girl (perhaps even his crush) wasn’t wise though. LOL. It’ll be nice to see what he does in the future. Show her you care man! Words are nice, but actions are better ;)

  • November 26, 2012 at 6:12 pmKiria

    I really like Mitty’s metaphor of the empty pot. I feel she’s fine with it being empty but wouldn’t mind to have some fish in there, just as she might be being swayed to start enjoying herself more with Haru and her friends. However, just like with the fish, it’s better to her to not anticipate things too much so she won’t get hurt when/if they don’t end up happening, which is why she’s probably so cautious and undecided about her relationship with Haru.

    PS. Yamaken tsundere is just great

  • November 26, 2012 at 6:17 pmwive

    hmm wonder expect love triangle going between shizuku, haru, & blonde guy?

    asako seem got troubled past til shades guy come in scare the bully women & shizuku got fired for 6th time yea call the mom explain more shizuku more like her mom.

  • November 26, 2012 at 8:02 pmvolant

    I really enjoyed this episode. The sequence when Mitty is talking about the water pot and her expectations when all of a sudden Haru sweeps her off her feet really shone through with its combination of music, lighting, facial expressions. This lifted my expectations as to what would come next so when Haru decided to go fishing, he really cracked me up. On the other hand, Sasayan failed yet again to step up to the plate. It’ll be interesting to see how he handles Natsume now that she’s fallen for someone else.

  • November 26, 2012 at 8:38 pmKinji

    Can’t get enough of Haru! damn why none of men in earth resembles him!

  • November 26, 2012 at 8:42 pmCherrie

    A rom/com story is not complete with it’s 4th wheel! And I saw this coming since episode 3, but it’s still good build-up and I’m glad that they took their time with it =)

    I thought the most interesting topic that Mitty brought up (or metaphor that she used) was her use of goldfish and how it related to her life. She’s used it once before but I think in a different tone… now she’s using it to explain to Haru how lonely she was and how she was setting up expectations for herself which led to her disappointments. Her conclusion – have no expectations and you will not be disappointed in the future. I think that’s why she chooses to immerse herself in areas that she can control and she knows her outcome. By studying hard, she will earn good grades.

    I think what’s more interesting though, is how Haru and Yamaken will play a role in her expectations. The reason that Haru probably captivates Mitty is because he DOESN’T meet her expectations, in fact, he goes off and totally does what he thinks is right (and to Mitty, she might not WANT anything). You can see in this episode, whereas she’s using fish as an EXAMPLE, Haru takes it quite literally to mean “She wants a pet.” I actually think this is adorable and if a guy ever did that, I’d be attracted to him because… well he’s so different. If someone goes through life expecting something… and all guys are exactly what you expect them to be… then they’re not special, they’re just average (someone like Yamaken, no offense). When you meet that someone who exceeds your expectations and surprises you, that’s when you know they’re trying.

    This is turning into a personal blurb… so for the tl;dr version > YAY HARU! You go get that fish!

    • November 27, 2012 at 10:34 amZanibas

      We need to do a collab post pl0x :P

  • November 26, 2012 at 8:49 pmNugester

    Sorry, Yamaken, you’ll never win. But, thanks for playing and helping Haru and Shizuku get closer together …

  • November 26, 2012 at 9:24 pmronbb

    I really enjoy this series, and this episode is no difference from the previous…it’s simply brilliant. I like its subtle way of story-telling. It flows from one point to the other so smoothly through the interactions and dialogue amongst the characters, and as the story is being told, my emotion simply swings along without even noticing it till the ED is played… Can’t wait for the next episode to come.

  • November 26, 2012 at 10:35 pmhwighting

    this series is torture because im always left wanting more. i think i may just delay watching until all the episodes are available.

  • November 27, 2012 at 5:41 amColonelMiim

    I kind of assume that there is two things:
    (1) Haru which makes her happy, without her study
    (2) Yamaken, which will study similarly with her (considering her studies are a big issue for her.)

    I think though, I loved Yamakin, he didn’t want to get into Haru’s relationship, though he intended to return the pen and just move on away, something might either happen, or not happen, I think he will be their friend. I think he won’t let this relationship ruin anywahting, ARGH THO, i love Yamakin after this episode, and Haru, and I’m liking Natsume and the glasses guy thing, this episode, made me like the series more :)…..

  • November 27, 2012 at 6:27 amTingster013

    No matter how good looking and smart a guy is( in this case, Yamaken), they will always have a fatal flaw. Good luck finding your way, Yamaken.

  • November 27, 2012 at 7:22 amNaiika

    I’ve always liked Yamaken, and though Haru is interesting I’ve always liked Yamaken over him. But that’s just me going for the underdog. We all know how stories like this end though so it doesn’t much matter.

  • November 27, 2012 at 8:33 amrei

    I’m probably one of the few people who prefer Yamaken over Haru because he’s a better boyfriend material. This is something I notice in shoujo manga/anime, the other guy is usually the better choice. Too bad they don’t get chosen…

  • November 27, 2012 at 9:38 amKinny Riddle

    I remember Terashima Takumi (Yamaken) doing another male tsundere as Touma in iDOLM@STER, where he started out as antagonistic towards our 765 girls, but then slowly sympathized with them and even helped them out at times, but his tsundere nature keeps getting in the way and putting up a front, the usual “I, it’s not like I’m helping you because I like you!” XD

    For some reason, I LOL’ed at Sasayan and Haru trolling Natsume about whether they’ve “done it”. LMAO

  • November 27, 2012 at 1:33 pmgrey

    oh the music cue at the end of the ep was perfect

    perfecttttttttt

  • November 27, 2012 at 2:47 pmjustin

    the battle is on!!

  • November 27, 2012 at 3:55 pmRyuuzaki21

    why i find mitty with hair down so hot? :3

  • November 28, 2012 at 1:02 amTorami

    Sasayan what are you doing! xD perceptive as he is, he might already know that he likes Natsume, though I’m not sure about that yet.
    I like how they’re bringing back Mitty’s story about the fish. Her appearance says she doesn’t care, but i’m sure somewhere in her heart she still feels loneliness.
    And Yamaken is really growing on me. I feel kind of bad for him since Mitty won’t look to anybody else than Haru, so it’s likely he’ll get rejected one day or another…
    And props for Zanibas, your posts are always so early! Good job ^^

  • December 4, 2012 at 7:38 amjreding

    What an awesome episode! I love Mitty and in a way I identify w/ her. But recently Natsume has grown even more on me! Yamaken has indeed turned out to be quite an interesting character. I find it hard to relate to him personally but one-dimensional he is not. I hope Natsume does not hook up w/ Mi-chan – he is way too old for her, no? (sry for the late comment)

  • December 5, 2012 at 4:02 amewok40k

    Poor Yamaken, friendzoned to the max. And he’s acting really nice towards Mitty, helping her understanding herself.
    To put it in the psychoanalytic light, Mitty’s superego has run amok with her desire to be in control of her life. By contrast we see Haru being completely ruled by his Id, and carefreely spending his day getting no fish in the end.
    Props to the authors for keeping light on secondary characters too! Natsume gets some nice present from life in the form of the Mi-chan (I wonder if he noticed her happy face?), and Sasayan is being sidetracked – at least for now.
    The relationship chart has become something of a strange star map now, with both main characters having now secondary one-sided love partners, and Natsume starting a strange triangle of her own, with a band of lesser followers in just for her looks…
    I expect Haru getting full jelly now he suddenly found a rival in Yamaken – I wonder what the results in the next episode will be?

  • January 3, 2013 at 5:00 amBackspace

    Power of tsundere transcends even gender as shown here by Yamaken.