Sunday, April 22, 2007

Kare Kano: Reminiscence

For a brief introduction to the above forementioned manga, please read it's wikipedia page or my blog entry on it.

As I mentioned before Kare Kano is the shortened name for Kareshi Kanojo no Jijo. The translated title is His and Her Circumstances. "Kareshi" although can mean "he", can also mean "boyfriend" which of course is referring to Arima Soichiro, likewise "Kanojo" can mean both "she" and "girlfriend" and which is of course Soichiro's girlfriend Miyazawa Yukino.

The reason for me bringing up this manga again is because this was the inspiration for me to write Yu Yi. I modelled the narrator after Soichiro. Yes, for those who have yet realised, the narrator is a male. The subject of the story was a bit more vague, I was also inspired partly by Yukino, but after writing that piece and reading that piece over again, I realised that the subject resembles me more than she resembles Yukino. Maybe it's the free spirited nature in the both of us. Yukino although might also be a free spirited character, she also has this charisma in her that enabled her to attract Soichiro. The subject in Yu Yi lacks this charm.

The relationship between the narrator and the subject is also different from the relationship between Soichiro and Yukino. Yukino really loves Soichiro.

Rewind to when Soichiro first tried to confess to Yukino, this was played out in a flashback of Soichiro narrating to Yukino after they were together. Soichiro had wrote a note to ask Yukino out to the Sakura trees, but because of some other reasons, he was unable to confess to Yukino. He only managed to confess on another occasion, this time he was successful. Yukino at that point in time rejected him flatly. However, as Yukino described the rejection to her two sisters, one of them mentioned that right from the start Yukino had already taken special notice of Soichiro if not she wouldn't have wanted to be in all ways better than him.

In another twist of fate, Yukino lowered her guard and Soichiro found out that Yukino was in fact a farce, and was a total slob at home. The anime depicts this scene very well, and made it very funny, better than the manga. There were a couple more conflicts between Yukino and Soichiro and over that course, Yukino realised that she was in fact very much drawn to Soichiro that she likes him. However as Soichiro had confessed to her before the expose, she wasn't sure if he still liked her.

Then comes the second confession of Soichiro. As he describes his feelings then in a later scene, he said that although he was first attracted to the farce image of Yukino, the more he learnt about the true her, the more he found her similiar to himself and the more he liked her, so there was a growth and development of his feelings towards her over the course of time. Although Yukino by this point in time knows that she likes Soichiro, and with the second confession, knows that Soichiro still likes her despite her being a total farce, doesn't tell him straight that she likes him.

I think this has got to do with a myraid of factors. Firstly, consider Yukino's reflex action, she didn't expect that second confession, hence there couldn't be the most natural reaction then. Then there's the circumstance she was in, at the metro station with an oncoming train, and Soichiro's reassurance that sort of just puts a full stop to the discussion. And most importantly there's the "otome" (translated very loosely it means something like virgin maiden) character inside Yukino.

The most difficult thing is not to tell a person you like him, but to tell a person who told you that he likes you that you like him.

Anyway, Yukino didn't say it, she did something else during some committee meeting with Soichiro, but that's not the point. The anime version was also better in this sence because we were able to see the struggles of Yukino, not knowing what she wanted to do, or say.

Another thing I want to bring up is the TV documentary I watched last Friday at 8.30pm. It's called 《圆点》之《重逢》, this girl she went all the way up to North Vietnam to look for her father. All these years growing up, she never met her father before, so there was a burning curiosity to what her father was like. When she first saw her father, in her own words, she said that she didn't feel anything about him, it was almost like they were strangers. But as she stayed with him over the next couple of days, and she went around to see how his life was like over there, she felt a bond between them, it was almost as if the stranger was becoming her father, over the span of that couple of days.

It's no different from Soichiro and his father Reiji Arima. Soichiro felt nothing when he first saw Reiji, but after Reiji kidnapped him and made him stay by his side for the next ten days, it is clear that Soichiro felt the bond between them, in fact, it was so clear to Soichiro that he loved Reiji. The scenes from Kare Kano played out to seem so much similiar from that girl's tale in Yuan Dian that I really took a double take. Just as her father brought her around the village, brought her to see his friends, his students, and how he was living his life over the past twenty over years, Reiji brought Soichiro with him along to his concert tours, brought him to meet his agent and all the media following him, brought him to drink, and just showed him how he was living his life over the past seventeen years, playing the piano and being given that new lease of life. I guess such things indeed do happen in real life too.

Okay, now I've got this huge urge to want to buy the complete set of Kare Kano. I don't even mind buying the entire set in Chinese, but after I've stopped my damned diet plan, my expenses have been rising and I don't have that spare cash to buy anymore manga. Maybe I should go back on that diet...

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