「ジョバーとローブロー」 (Jobaa to Rooburoo)
“Jobber and Low Blow”
Someone mentioned it and I will not take credit for it, but Yui’s background is revealed this week and she was indeed a rape victim. Or almost. I think it would’ve made for a darker story if she really was raped, since the “almost” lessens the severity of the situation. However, the fact that she was attacked when she was younger explains why she doesn’t like being touched, why she shivers in the presence of men and why she seems to shake Yoshifumi off. As terrifying as her experiences are though, I was more interested in the interactions between Taichi and Yui, Taichi and Himeko and I was hoping for more Iori. I also thought it would’ve been a nice touch if they animated a flashback of some sort while Yui dug up her past. It would have delivered a more powerful message in my opinion, however I guess the focus of the episode isn’t on Yui, but rather how she overcomes her past.
I ranted a bit about how the body-switching and Heartseed introduction bothered me last episode… but I know understand a little more that the series is more about how each person overcomes their insecurities with the help of others who understand what they’re going through. Yui and Taichi were a great example of that. As stated, I’m not too thrilled about hearing about Yui’s background, but what really got me was how Taichi chose to help her overcome her fears (even if it meant injuring himself). I never imagined a Yui x Taichi pairing, but I’m starting to see it more now. Taichi is indeed someone that I can foresee fitting all three of the female characters. I don’t necessarily think that’s a good thing – I see him as a very typical harem male lead who just happens to fit everyone, easy going personality with no real sense of individuality. He even lets his sister dictate what they watch.
On the other hand, I really don’t blame Taichi for his “lack” of personality so to speak. For one, I definitely relate to him in more ways than one. Himeko pointed out that he was selfless and he would like someone to protect (someone like Iori), even being as clueless as he is. Although I definitely agree with Himeko’s evaluation of the situation, I also see Taichi as someone like myself and I can empathize with him. He fits all the girls and blends in well because he’s so laid-back. He’s selfless in a sense that he rather see other people happy and he chooses to suffer (by doing garbage clean-up for example) because he knows it has to be done and no one wants to do it. I completely respect that (and have been in similar situations), and that means I no longer find him a bland character to watch. I’m actually very anxious to find out who he ends up being most attracted to… my guess so far goes to Himeko (since she did just faint). While she described Iori, I almost felt like she was also going through the same emotional roller coaster and simply had no one to depend on – since she acts as the pillar for all the other girls to lean on.
Yoshifumi and Iori had very few scenes this episode… and the few scenes that Yoshifumi was in, made me only feel like he was the most undeveloped and flat character. The girls trump the guys in terms of interesting back stories and Yoshifumi falls way behind Taichi in terms of understanding people too. Not to say that he doesn’t have his own issues, I just haven’t seen them surface yet. This probably won’t be explored until later though – next episode seems to focus more on Himeko, Iori and Taichi.