Hah! Where have I been eh? I miss talking about Sakamichi no Apollon the anime this past week because I got caught up reading volume 9 of the manga, watching other anime like Tsuritama, Jormungand, Space Brothers, KuroBas and Hyouka. Yup basically catching up. Updated my MAL list and then some.
I reckon it’s only natural that some peeps from the anime fandom poke me for the burning triangular or polygon relationship resolutions now that I’ve read Vol.9 of “Sakamichi”. Shall I spoil a little bit? Nah, not really. The one thing I’m going to stress is what Junichi’s college mate said to Kaoru in Ep 05: “Unlike Lovers, Friendship is for life“. And emm, a passage of time is involved. See, that is actually a teeny clue for the curious bunch poking me. How it gets to that point…let’s enjoy the anime together and find out.
Now then, we move on to the recent episodes which saw Kaoru being rejected by Ri-chan; Kaoru meeting his mom for the first time since childhood (with much encouragement from Sen no less); Sen going on a so-called date with Yurika who in turn can’t seem to hear enough about Jun; Sen being friendly with a new interloper bowl-haired character named Matsuoka Seiji; Ri-chan starting to have 2nd thoughts about Kaoru; Kaoru raging with jealousy at Sen’s new found friendship with Matsuoka the interloper and at the end there, the appearance of a disheveled looking Jun. Yes that’s very much what transpired in a nutshell, so to speak.
A year has passed since Kaoru first met Sen and Ri-chan. Even though his character has somewhat progresses, there’s one thing that hasn’t change with Kaoru and that’s his childish tantrums and jealous mood swings. Yup, his immature traits are still there and rears its ugly head in full force in both Ep 5 (after Ri-chan rejected him) and Ep 6 when he burst out at Sen over his new found friendship with Seiji. That’s just way over the top even after all Sen has done for him. Didn’t Sen told him not to judge Seiji when he does not know him yet? Furthermore, Kaoru never really talk to Sen about his insecurities either (fear of abandonment, what not). That’s the part he often assumed or took for granted. I’m sure Sen doesn’t read minds nor do I want him to. Jeez! I really can’t bring myself to empathize with his predicament as I do Sentaro’s back story. I gotta say that it is something that’ll come up again.
The way I see it, the only thing Kaoru has done for Sen is to indirectly warn him about getting too invested in Yurika (because he figured out Yurika is besotted with Jun…clue: the letters) and nudging Sen towards Ri-chan because he didn’t want Ri-chan to be disappointed which, does not make him look like a chivalrous hero but more like a meddling fool and a spoiled brat who is privy to a certain secret info. It is a good thing Kaoru met up with his long absent mother and even then, it is only after Sen’s insistence. He felt like giving up on the thought at one point. If he did that then he would probably regret it forever. To have the meeting happened is a good development for him and surely, it is the beginning of a renewal of bonds between mother and son, a relationship he would want to build upon later.
Gah, does this not make Kaoru such an unlikable leading male character? Yes but it does not make him less interesting. The opposite in this case, is true. His portrayal made him out to be realistic. I’m sure at some point in our teenaged years, we’ve gone through some of the traits that he exhibited, particularly the fear of rejection by others. At this juncture, it seems that the whole thing is a set up to bring forth more changes in Kaoru as the series heads towards the last half of the story. This is HIS story afterall and it is mainly told through his point of view.
Aren’t viewers surprise (or disappointed) by now that “Sakamichi” isn’t just about jazz? It is more about the friendship equation then it is about jazz although it is undeniably the catalyst that brought the main characters together. I reckon music will still play its part as we wind through the 2nd half and we might even get to hear something other than jazz (*hint* the Beatles album in Sen’s school bag). No doubt the atmosphere is bound to get moodier with Kaoru and Sen’s bromanceship facing its low ebb. Will Kaoru make up with Sen? With all the blushing we get from Ri-chan when she’s near Kaoru recently, will we see a change of heart from her? That’s the vibe that I’ve been getting so strongly in episode 6. What of Jun? Something is possibly going down with him that will add possible tension to the already fragile relationship dynamics. I really hope the anime won’t skip his development if it intends to settle the 2nd *triangle* equation. I am eagerly looking forward to the next episode which will probably cover vol.5 and that leaves 4 more volumes to fit into 5 more episodes. Gonna be tight but nonetheless, interesting to see.
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