|GATCHA~! How is everyone doing? I’ve been playing Dragon’s Crown in 12-hour stretches with my friends, foregoing just about every anime except for the ones I’m blogging. Err, hopefully I can catch up soon because that will be a lot of anime to watch and a lot of anime posts to read. Ah, the pains of having too many obsessions!|
I have been concerned about Hajime over the past few episodes. She is the shining beacon of light to lead everyone to success and happiness, and she always makes the best moral decisions. What’s left for someone who already has life figured out and is totally comfortable in their own skin? Hajime’s one shortcoming is her inability to properly communicate with others. I haven’t seen much improvement on her behalf just yet, but I think she will improve towards the end of the series. What I have been seeing is an improvement in her reputation, as her comrades begin to finally understand just how self-aware and smart she really is.
Hajime’s “Scissor Striptease” never really caught on
I thought Utsutsu-chan might still feel sour about Hajime’s not-so-delicate handling of their one serious discussion, but she’s completely gotten over it. She’s starting to understand that her power is a curse but it is also a gift. This is the first time we’ve seen her jump into action. She jumps in and starts healing people out of her own free will. It was nice to see her finally take action, and feel proud of her powers. Jou helping her out was a nice touch as well. It looks like making clones and controlling the flow of life energy doesn’t come without a cost, and she could die if she overuses her powers. I suspect this won’t be the last time she’ll overexert herself to try and save someone. I just hope it doesn’t result in death.
After the tunnel events, Utsutsu-chan does a lot of bonding with Hajime. Although Hajime still dances around the point when speaking to her, I think the concept of getting a reward is simple enough to make Utsutsu-chan understand. She’s better with actions than words, so this is her way of supporting her new friend – with a shower of hugs and bows. She cut her dress so much that we see her in a different skirt the next scene – a rather endearing gesture despite being so bizarre. I wonder if Kenji Nakamura made Hajime like this to reflect his style of direction that often relies heavily on visuals instead of words and long-winded dialogue. She certainly suits his usual style, and I feel like she’s very similar to past protagonists such as Haru (Tsuritama) and Irabu (Kuuchuu Buranko) in that regard.
Hajime does many things that seem strange to everyone else, and never even tries to explain herself. For the first time ever, Sugane asks her about her behaviour and receives a very important response. Why did she reveal herself to Rui? Well, talking face-to-face was an important way to get accustomed to this new face and win them over. Furthermore, she likely wouldn’t have another chance to talk again. She doesn’t say all this, but she explains that her actions were all for a reason. Sugane is shocked. All this time Hajime has not been acting out on a whim. She’s not oblivious, she’s not stupid, and she’s not as barking mad as she seems. This is the first big step he takes to understanding her, as well as understanding his own position in all of this chaos.
Sugane represents a sort of medium ground between Paiman and Hajime. He is a stickler for rules and loves justice, yet he is flexible enough to change his views if provided a logical explanation. Paiman is so obedient to JJ that it’s comical. He can’t make an decision on his own, and gets mad whenever he’s asked to think critically about anything. He’s the opposite of Hajime, who is highly suggestible to new ideas, but always makes her own decisions in the end. Sugane is influenced by both of them, and is slowly deciding just how he wants to align himself as time moves on. Episode 1 Sugane was more like Paiman whereas now he’s a lot less stubborn. Furthermore, he’s aware that he’s changing and is trying to make sure that these changes are right. He’s a very responsible young man, and I’m starting to like him more and more as a character now that I see his more sensitive side. Also, he suddenly became really goddamned fashionable.
Some restaurants decorate their tables with candles. Others…
Now that Sugane understands Hajime, the two of them can finally work together like a team. He can also potentially learn to “translate” her babbling into something more concrete for other people to fully understand her. I liked watching the two of them chat with Rui because they were both on the same wavelength, but they communicated in completely different ways. It’s interesting that Rui brushed off Sugane, yet was deeply affected by Hajime’s words. He also seems to realize how sharp Hajime is despite her appearance. He likes her devotion to justice and how she’s unfazed by the concept of fame.
He’s also impressed at her ability to see through his Crowds ability and his true gender. Her comment about his make-up – while sounding kinda rude – is probably just a round-about way of telling him to stop being so guarded. His cross-dressing may not just be for fun, but a way of hiding his true self. It’s obvious that he’s hiding something about his special powers as well, and Hajime just wants him to be straight with her. It may not seem like a typical conversation between two geniuses trying to trick each other, but Hajime is playing mind games of her own.
It’s interesting that Rui is immediately struck by Hajime and doesn’t write her off as crazy, like just about everyone else. As expected, the two of them have a really interesting dynamic when put together. I can’t wait to see how he plans on stopping the Gatchaman. Personally, I find his actions to be hypocritical. He longs for a world full of people who feel good helping others, yet when he finds people with these values, he tells them to stop saving others. It’s frustrating that he tells them a small group of people with special powers will make the world too reliant on them when he’s doing the same thing. Does he really think 100 people with special powers can support the entire world? If people become reliant on others in power, then why not abolish the police and the firefighters too and see justhow well that works out? He’s missing a big opportunity by not co-operating with them and just merging their services with GALAX. If this show is all about the importance of communication, I predict it won’t be long for Rui’s plans to crash and burn.
On a side note, it’s nice to see Jou is alive and…with a gun. Jesus Christ, can this man stay out of danger for like 2 seconds? I think the death flag is officially lowered, but he sure is getting himself into trouble lately.