I love this girl.
Really, how could you not?
Anna is, to me, indicative of the difference in quality between it and many other anime floating around out there, particularly those with large female casts. In another show, Anna would be your run-of-the-mill tsundere. She certainly demonstrates some of the attributes of that trope, after all. However, Anna’s actually got characterization, and I would never think of calling her a tsundere because of that. Yes, she’s fairly taciturn. Yes, her behavior toward Nitori warms up. And, yes, she does get mad at Maho when she makes accusations of romance between the two. But she’s a fully rendered person; this isn’t a walking piece of moe-bait.
I find myself enjoying the NitorixAnna romance more in animated form for some reason; I suppose the sweetness of it just comes across more clearly when the characters are actually moving and have voices. Yui Horie is doing a fantastic job as Anna – she’s been in a lot of roles I haven’t been crazy about, but her work here and on Aoi Hana (where she voiced Kyouko) has been quite impressive. She’s gotten typecast a lot, but I think these sorts of roles actually display her talent much more effectively.
I think the anime makes it look like Takatsuki has a crush on Nitori where the manga did not. Since the anime is extremely unlikely to hit the point where Takatsuki does have her first crush, I suppose it doesn’t really matter, although I’m not thrilled about it.
Speaking of Takatsuki, I just wished to comment on how she definitely seems to be the least… not mature exactly, of the bunch. It isn’t that she’s immature, given the negative connotations of that term. She’s just not as aware as the rest of the core cast seems to be. Her behavior with Saori makes that clear, and my citing of that also would’ve made the use of the term ‘mature’ problematic, since Saori isn’t exactly being mature herself. She’s mad ’cause her crush likes this girl! It really does serve to remind one of the fact that Saori, for all her calmness and seriousness, is still a thirteen year old.
Saori’s rash decisions also point out that she’s an adolescent. Not going to school because her crush got a girlfriend? And telling her mother that she’s just going to quit altogether? Along with suggesting that she can become someone’s mistress? If that isn’t a teenager in a nutshell, I don’t know what is.
I found the bit about the retention of the personal pronouns they use out of habit to be an interesting bit. One of the things I enjoy about the Japanese language is the variety of ways to say “I”. I like looking at the choice of pronoun can say about the person, and the ways in which people consciously opt for one versus another. A friend of mine always uses わたくし (watakushi) when she speaks Japanese. I tend toward 我 （われ）(ware) (in my case it’s borne out of the fact that I studied Mandarin previously, and the pronoun is 我 read as ‘wǒ’; I liked the character’s appearance itself and was reluctant to part with it… it drove my poor professor insane, because she insisted I sounded like an old man by using it). SEMANTICS. IT’S INTERESTING.
私 (watashi) has a bit of a range for it’s femininity vs. masculinity quotient, although it is much more often used by girls and women. 僕 (boku) on the other hand? Eh, not so much. When women or girls use it, its usually because they are a. tough or trying to project a tough image, b. consciously trying to be different, or c. masculine. Amusingly enough, Ayu from Kanon used ‘boku’, although it was supposed to strike us as cute – look at this short, adorable girl! And she’s using ‘boku’! Moeeeeee! So Nitori in girls’ clothing will probably strike that cord to most, so long as his voice doesn’t start sounding too manly.
Moving along, I’ll note that the OP single, Itsudatte by Daisuke, came out March 2nd. I actually like the OP better than the ED, surprisingly. A bit ‘meh’ on the B-side thus far, but I’ve only listened to it twice; it may grow on me/I may appreciate it more when I’m not trying to do a million things at once.
Oh, and all the blushing everyone does in this makes me finally see why some people are apparently into SaorixTakatsuki. Still don’t really find it much myself, but I can at least understand where they’re coming from with it.
For those of you interested in more about Japanese personal pronouns, Wikipedia has a pretty good chart.