If I was to complain about the current generation of anime I would say, among other things, that there’s not enough emphasis on what happens after the boy gets the girl or the girl gets the boy and there’s still too many loser male main characters. Neither are inheritantly bad; but, with the former, it’s because it went past the happily-ever-after that the second season of Clannad was so unique and great. And, the insistence by some on the latter really restricts the type of series that can be done and often feels like mere laziness on the part of the creators. Just look at the reaction from fans with Melancholy of Haruhi, Gurren Lagann, Steins;Gate, and Space Brothers to see what’s possible with non-loser male main characters.
One of the reasons for the success with Chuunibyou demo Koi ga Shitai! is that it didn’t settle on using these current anime conventions, either.
In episode 10 of Chuu2 we got the profession of love which would be the end to a lesser series and up until that point our male main character, Yuuta, had been a pretty solid character – on the whole coming across as pretty average with flashes of being cool. That puts Yuuta in a very small group of male main characters but what makes him even more interesting is what happens afterwards.
Guys, I’m willing to admit, are pretty clueless about many things and can come off as losers very easily and very frequently. So it’s not that I dislike characters like Shinji because they’re unrealistic but I dislike them for their prevalence and how far their loserness is carried out.
After Yuuta and Rikka pledge a lover’s contract between themselves then in an exceedingly short amount of time Yuuta realizes just how completely ill-equipped he is to handle their new relationship. A cool character would have known exactly what to say and how to act to help Rikka but he doesn’t those words or the right actions and he knows it. He’s become a loser and a jerk, not because that’s how the creators artificially wrote him to be, but because he’s a tenth grader who has no prior knowledge to handle a situation such as this.
His downwards streak continues in episode 11. After seeing Rikka off at the train station and failing to figure out what he’s supposed to do, Yuuta is confronted by Dekomori. She berates him for allowing Rikka to just leave like she did and he blows up; he angrily attacks her about her own chunnibyouism until she runs away in tears.
He then stands there shaking with frustrated anger at himself like the lost little lamb he is, lamenting that he didn’t say what he wanted say and said what he didn’t want to say. It’s this moment of raw emotional grief that is shown with such clarity because of the efforts by Kyoto Animation that it is today’s moment. It’s not the prettiest moment from Chuu2 but it’s such a unique scene that it’s one of the most memorable.
So, to pick up from yesterday:
On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: a love powered mecha.
On the second day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: a wake up call.
On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: a unique form of culture shock.
On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: a masterpiece to savor.
On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: a shock to the heart.
On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: a pair of comfortable old slippers.
On the seventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: a wink and a nudge.
On the eighth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: Botox for the facial spasms.
On the ninth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: a reality check.
On the tenth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: a warm fuzzy memory.
On the eleventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me: a reckoning of my failures.
Tune in tomorrow to see what’s next.