「友達と彼女」 (Tomodachi to Kanojo)
“Friends and Girlfriend”
Yes, that’s right, you’re not seeing things: Kanojo Okarishimasu wound up getting coverage. Not even sure what made me pull the trigger. Interest? Alcohol? Deep seated sense of masochistic self-loathing? All within the realm of possibility, however one thing is certainly known: this show will be taking romantic cliff diving to new extremes.
While Kanojo Okarishimasu has effectively laid out the tropes and stereotypes it will use until its dying breath, this episode was arguably the first where we got the full extent of Kazuya’s wimpish personality. Simp; cuck; oneitis; whatever term or phrase you want to stick him with it’s the sort of behaviour damn near everyone loathes, and frankly it’s not hard seeing why. As Kibe physically pointed out (you don’t see this often), Kazuya latches onto the first sliver of apparent female romantic interest and all but drops everything else in favour of it. Actually getting to the know the girl beyond a pretty face and small talk? Of course not, for this kid thinking and consideration are a fool’s errand; the only thing is grasping a hold of and consolidating the attention before it slips away. Mind you, the situation is coloured by Chizuru’s involvement, but there’s no denying the results: Kazuya found his balls only because he rationalized one surprise kiss from Mami as indication enough that nothing between them has really changed.
The ironic thing about Kazuya’s behaviour though is that there’s nothing especially forced or artificial regarding it. This sort of supplication, awkwardness, and outright naivety is something I’m sure a lot of us have gone through given the rules of the dating world are not as much learned as acquired through repeated failure. To just “get it” and actually find sustained romantic success takes experience, and it’s something Kazuya currently—and horribly—lacks in. This is what makes Mami’s actions all the more reprehensible because she’s effectively a master running circles around an initiate. While Mami’s reasons may be unknown right now, it’s pretty damn obvious Kazuya’s currently a play piece for her whose only purpose is getting her ahead. I firmly suspect this advancement is specifically in the realm of social status and social validation (note that response to Kibe calling her out), but there could easily be more to it, especially if she has her eyes set on a bigger target. If you never thought girls would use one guy to get with another, I’d recommend reconsidering those beliefs.
And as for Chizuru? Well, not much to be said on this front. Yet. As before the girl has kept her relationship with Kazuya solidly professional (even if some whispers of interest are present), but after going zero to partying with Corona-chan in the span of a few hours and taking a dive off a boat I imagine there’ll be some recalibration of feelings after Kazuya’s heroics are fully realized. No romance worth its salt is going to let one girl ahead that much that fast, especially when we have more female competition yet to make their appearance. Without a doubt though the aftermath of this little event will see two girls boasting stronger interest in our outmatched MC, and newfound reasons for both to start actually facing off against each other for his attention.
The only question is whether that attention will first involve Kazuya in the process stupidly spending even more of his rapidly dwindling bank account.
If she says it’s cute, rest assured it’s anything but.
While still early days, it’s hard not hating on Kazuya’s friends and thinking they see him as little more than the group punching bag. It’s incredibly rude to just up and invite yourselves to someone’s house, and try to push for it through peer pressure and coercion. It doesn’t reflect well on Kibe keeping quiet during that moment either.