Nazo no Kanojo X – 11

Time for rivals to strip have a showdown!

So Aika managed to coax the rather accomodating Akira to her school festival, dressed to seduce in front of Mikoto. But how would Mikoto react to this engineered misunderstanding? As it turned out, in a way only she could…

Akira’s is the face of a man with no regrets.

After the rather conventional high school love drama stuff last week, it was nice to see the show return with the crazy this week. It’s managed to make me acclimated to its oddities so that two naked girls standing in a classroom offering their saliva to a blindfolded boy… okay, that was still pretty out there, but at least the context made sense. Like what Akira thought, it was an over the top dream(nightmare)-like situation, one that the show managed to construct convincingly. I also loved how quickly it arrived, with Mikoto’s directness guaranteeing minimal wasted time.

It was impossible not to love her wearing a robot costume in order to sneak in to the festival and wearing nothing else in order to assert her ownership of Akira. We had seen Mikoto’s jealous side a couple of weeks ago, and we saw it again here, this time against a real person. It seems she’s been coming to grips with her possessive instinct at the same time as Akira. This was a different girl to the one who chose not to interfere during Akira’s first encounter with Aika. Or even the time when Ogata asked her out; could she say to Akira anymore not to interfere? After the hilarity she caused this episode?

Look at how dominating Mikoto looks here.

I’m curious about the sweetness of Aika’s saliva and what that meant. At first, I thought sweet saliva was part of the bond between Mikoto and Akira, but sweetness was also used to communicate emotions between Mikoto and Oka. This time, Mikoto was drawing conclusions about Aika’s future love life. Seems to change based on context, but also seems always to be related to strong feelings of love. Perhaps Mikoto tasted that Aika was a very loving person and concluded that such a person would be successful in love in the future?

I’m generally content letting the magical realism be, but the scope of the magic of drool keeps expanding, and it would be fascinating if the show explored it more. Starting as a strange quirk that Mikoto had, it’s become a general thing that could be shared by anyone, but Mikoto still appears to have some special knowledge about it. But I don’t expect the show to head that way (or the manga to have, actually), and given the type of work this is, it really doesn’t have to (or rather, it shouldn’t). Mysterious Girlfriend X has used its magic wonderfully, to create outrageous, hilarious, and emotionally satisfying scenes like the showdown in this episode, and that’s more than enough.

In the end, the best pieces of fanservice in this episode were Urabe’s smiles.

Preview

What’s got Oka all googly eyed this time?

About

A math/science geek and a self-dubbed cynical optimist. I don't care if it's deep, if it can make me feel something or laugh, it's fine in my book. @lvlln
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14 Responses to “Nazo no Kanojo X – 11”

  1. skylion says:

    This is how anime is done. Actually this is how proper storytelling is done. Antagonist, Protagonist. Boring. This show allows another level of characterization to proceed. Cheers all around, I say.

    As for the true fanservice vs. the real fanservice. I have a broad mindset, and can accept both. And love both for all they are worth.

    Bring on the BD.

    • BlackBriar says:

      I agree this is how it’s done. And they’ve given a somewhat new twist on the confrontation thing between two girls fighting over a guy. The tasting saliva while being blindfolded while the girls are naked in front of you in broad daylight is a new one to me. It completely went over my head.

    • Highway says:

      It may have been mentioned in previous episodes, but I think the show’s decision to severely limit the number of characters (only 2 main characters, one full-time (Oka) and one part-time (Aika) supporting character, 2 comic relief characters (Ueno and Youko(sis)) – this whole show has fewer characters than Aikawa Ayumu’s harem) and limit the number of locations (most episodes seem to have only 3 or 4 locations, usually repeats from earlier shows) gives it the time to allow that much character development of the ones we’re interested in. And they’re using that time tremendously well. The show is *never* boring, even though that would seem like a recipe for people just standing around talking. And the emotional range is staggering, mostly due to the low level they start off with.

      Really, the series direction has been top notch all the way through, starting (from what I hear) with the selection of scenarios from different manga volumes but brought together so well that the viewer wouldn’t ever know, to keeping the series consistent and on a path with definite vision. Really excellent.

  2. Highway says:

    One thing I think it’s worth noting, regarding the general nature you mention of saliva sharing there seems to be: It’s not as general as you’d think. So far in the show, we’ve only seen one nexus of saliva sharing: Mikoto. Everyone has shared with her – Akira, Ogata (and it’s possible that Ogata experienced the sweetness, without the other emotional response, and just didn’t comment on it), Oka, and now Aika – and as far as we know noone has shared with anyone else. Not Ueno-Oka, not Aika-Akira. So there’s still the possibility, or even the probability, that it’s something unique about Mikoto. She might be more sensitive to other people, as well.

    I thought the episode was excellent as well. Terrific characterization, nice development, and sublime imagination. Mikoto is thinking so many steps ahead in situations like this. Also, for someone who self-limits her human interaction so much, she has unbelievable insight into other people’s emotions.

    Also, silly thing to note: When Oka was looking out the window at the maid cafe and seeing Aika and Akira, the board next to her head said “oka” (from the start of “okaerinasai”. I thought it was kinda funny, and wondered how intentional it was.

    • lvlln says:

      Huh, it didn’t occur to me to think it through, but the saliva connections have been almost all Urabe, but not quite. In episode 6, Oka took a taste of Akira’s sweat when they were having ice cream. Still, it seems that Mikoto is a girl who attracts this phenomenon.

      • Highway says:

        See, I’m not even sure about Oka and Akira. I thought that was ice cream that he got on his cheek or nose after Oka startled him by murmuring “Akira-kun” in his ear. I thought it was more symbolism, that she knew something he didn’t.

  3. Karry says:

    that two naked girls standing in a classroom offering their saliva to a blindfolded boy… okay, that was still pretty out there

    Not really. You should see some of the Jap porn, my god, they are so creative it hurts. Having sex in a lion’s cage, strip badminton, women used as racing cars…that is something so insane it can hardly be described in full detail, human furniture…

    • lvlln says:

      Well, our expectations of TV anime are different from our expectations of porn, no matter how much the former seems like the latter in some cases. Sure, the situation seems pulled right out of a porno screenplay.

  4. BlackBriar says:

    Hahaha, even if being slapped down by two hot girls, Akira should consider himself the luckiest man alive. Man, that was a lot of fan service but it was well intergrated with the story. That was Mikoto’s best use of scissors yet. I wonder if she does it like that often because it was well excuted without a single cut on her body.

    They set everything up so you’re expecting some sort of classic jealous confrontation, hurt feelings, etc but they surprised us with the end. And instead, we end up with a blindfolded Akira, both his love interests naked and swapping spit and Oka wearing a maid outfit in the corner hiding while watching the show unfold.

    But who’s the more perverted one here? Akira for imagining Mikoto and Hayakawa naked, or the girls who are getting a thrill out of being naked in front of him blindfolded?

    I didn’t expect Mikoto to one up Hayakawa so easily. She obviously had her suspicions but that was masterfully done. Mikoto forced Hayakawa to confront her own feelings of inadequacies and as a result, I think Hayakawa can be more honest with herself. Mikoto is a lot more mature and confident than a average high school girl would normally be.

    • lvlln says:

      Yeah, Mikoto’s direct reaction to Aika’s challenge was unexpected and refreshing. She definitely displays maturity beyond her years, but only in certain aspects. She’s still got many of the insecurities expected of a teenage girl. I like that she’s grown more possessive over time – more in touch with her feelings toward Akira.

  5. Highway says:

    A question: What significance should we attach to the fact that Mikoto shushed Akira before he could tell Aika that he loved Mikoto? Was Mikoto trying to save what was left of Aika’s self-confidence before it was crushed with outright rejection? Was she trying to signal something to Akira about the possible impermanence of their relationship? Was she perhaps not wanting to hear him declare it in such a situation? Or something I’m not thinking of?

    Or am I just thinking too much about it?

    • Racer X 47.1 beta says:

      I’d say Mikoto was protecting Aika. Mikoto is very perceptive and I think she saw passed Aika trying to steal her boyfriend and saw the hurt little girl that was there. Some girls/women play those catty games, but I don’t think Mikoto is that type of person.

      Interesting question on whether Mikoto was hinting at the impermanence of the relationship. I have the feeling she recognizes it, but I doubt if Akira is at that level of understanding yet. As even he admits, he’s still a kid. If she did try to explain it to him, it would just send him into a panic.

      • Highway says:

        Yeah, talking about their future is something that’s kind of odd. We know the show is happening sometime in the past, although it’s presented as present tense. There are also some times, although I think they tend to be translation weirdness, where it’s hard to tell how far in the future we’re watching it from, usually in Akira’s last-line voiceover before the ED.

        In Episode 1, he says “That’s how I got a girlfriend for the first time in my life.” (I’ve seen other translations that are ‘That’s how I got my first girlfriend’ which means something different). But Episode 6, he says “This is why I have a picture of my girlfriend making a funny face in my wallet.” And a few of the other ones he says things like “my girlfriend continues to be mysterious.” So I guess it’s pretty inconclusive whether Mikoto’s his ‘first’ girlfriend out of multiples, or first and only.

  6. princeleon/Tommy says:

    This is easily one of my favorite arcs in the manga. The characterization and development was some of the best yet. The “fanservice” was also a nice element though it does make you wonder just who are the real perverts here. I don’t think it’s Akira. :P

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