Kokoro Connect – 07 & 08
Sorry for the delay – I have been fairly busy & not all that inspired by the last two episodes of this show. So anyway, short post (by my standards anyway) covering episodes 7 & 8.
This new “unleashed desires” arc hasn’t really captured my attention the way the body swapping arc did. The main reason for this is the fact the show is just too tame with the “desires” it chooses to unleash – with a cast consisting of dumb hormonal teenagers, I’d have expected lots of sex, illicit substances & fighting (just going by my own teen years). Instead we just get a lot of angsty bitching and a few mild scuffles – which isn’t all that interesting to watch as it’s bog standard teenage behaviour.
Just take Taichi for example – his unleashed desires so far consist of sleeping though an imouto wake-up call, ranting at Inaba about her lack of trust, trying to forcibly white knight Yui and knocking Iori headfirst into a locker. Now I appreciate that given Taichi’s normally stoic countenance that these episodes are something out of the ordinary for him, but I hardly think they are a true reflection of everything that’s bubbling away in his subconscious! For Taichi who likes to see himself as a “good guy”, the way he lashes out violently when “unleashed” is extremely concerning, causing Taichi to withdraw from the group just like Yui but to a less extreme extent. This is very frustrating because the group should be coming together and supporting each other, not getting caught up in their own angsty bubbles.
I can’t help but feel that this arc is a step back – there was a lot of potential left in the body-swapping idea, and I’m pretty disappointed that it’s been abandoned. The idea of releasing the ‘id’ also has a lot of potential, but Kokoro Connect appears reluctant to really go all out and explore its characters sub-consciousnesses in a meaningful manner. I can only hope that Heartseed steps in to liven things up again – his presence in the preview with Inaba is promising.
I am also once again disappointed that Aoki continues to be sidelined. In the latest episode he steps up and gets into a heated argument with Taichi over what to do about Yui. However he once again fades into the background immediately afterwards – once again I’m left wondering about what makes Aoki tick; it is unfortunate that he will probably continue to be sidelined in favour of Taichi.
What makes Aoki’s lack of development worse is the fact that Fujishima is instead being pushed to the fore. That in itself isn’t a bad thing because Fujishima is a fun and interesting character who livens things up a bit, but the fact that she has had more development than one of the central quintet annoys me. With the upcoming school field-trip grouping the love triangle trio together with Fujishima & Taichi’s friend, I’d imagine Aoki, and Yui to a lesser degree, will continue to find themselves neglected.
There’s still time to turn this arc around, but the wasted potential irks me quite a lot. Kokoro Connect just lacks that extra bit of care & depth that would have made it a brilliant show – as it stands it’s just good, and in a way that annoys me more than if it was utter tripe.