As Mei and Yamato are slowly but steadily climbing up the stairs of hardships, the toughest step so far has appeared – the love rival. While it is a very common stereotype in most shoujo series, the love rival is a great way for the main couple to realize their insecurities. In Mei’s case, watching Yamato working with the straightforward Dessert model Kitagawa Megumi (Kotobuki Minako), made her see that she isn’t strong. Mei is honest, straightforward, and very down-to-earth – because she has been isolated. There was never anyone she could deliberately hurt. Now that she has Yamato, she is afraid of doing something that might disappoint or hurt him. She has someone she doesn’t want to lose now, therefore she can’t express her sadness, in case Yamato will be upset.
Yamato on the other hand has slowly learned to see that he doesn’t have to please everyone, but now that Mei supported him taking on the modeling offer, he thought this was his way of making her happy. There are so many more obstacles in this couple’s path…
One thing that is quite unique to this series’ love rival character is that she, unlike most shoujo’s challengers, doesn’t share a past with the male. Megumi’s interest in Yamato is very shallow as it is based completely on looks. It’s undeniable that beautiful people are attractive and interesting to us, but usually most of us keep that attraction for ourselves. Megumi is obviously a very social girl. As a model she is talented, and everyone looks up to her. For her it’s easy to voice her thoughts without thinking of the consequences. She takes people’s admiration for granted. It was nice to see how Yamato rejecting her, and not only because he is in a relationship already, but also because he can now see how artificial the “feelings” most girls had for him were.
Of course, Megumi won’t give up. She seems to be the kind of girl who must have it her way. Her sly way of using work as an excuse to spend time with Yamato worked very well. She has also befriended Asami which shows that she will slowly worm her way in Mei’s circle of friends to perhaps, exclude her from it. It is a mean way to get what you want, but Megumi is famous and respected so it is bound to work. Things aren’t looking good for Mei, especially not when even her friends are all swooning over Megumi, however, let’s not forget that Aiko is a friend of Mei too. She has a bit of an attitude but her feelings are genuine; she has also overcome the stage where looks meant everything, so hopefully, Mei won’t be alone in this. But the most important person in this is Yamato.
He loves Mei, that is for sure, but he still can’t see her insecurity or her fear of losing him. It is hard for me to understand whether or not he really can see how much Mei cares about him. While the modeling part was just an act, he didn’t even notice his girlfriend crying. Perhaps he was very into the job. It is hard to blame him when Mei was fine with it, but it’s frustrating to see Mei who finally found some light in her life having that taken away from her by someone whom she just met. But surely, Yamato can be trusted. He wouldn’t betray Mei, hopefully, however, that doesn’t mean that Mei’s life is about to become any easier. Megumi is the ideal girl to many men, and for someone like Mei, that is hard to beat. But Mei has one thing Megumi doesn’t, and that is a kind heart that is capable of loving. That heart of hers is what makes her so lovable, don’t you agree?
- That’s a, uh, rather strange way to test your cookies…
- Megumi is a Dessert model. A fun fact is that the Sukitte Ii na yo. manga is serialized in Dessert.
- Asami and Kenji sure like to express their randy feelings!
- It looks like the studio is using Adobe Camera Raw through Adobe Bridge (correct me if I’m wrong)! I prefer Adobe Photoshop Lightroom.
- Double glomp!
- Full-length shots: 11, 28, 36
- Eyecatch: B-part