One of my notebooks was nearing depletion after about three years of use, and so I decided to write a lengthy write-up with dedication until I filled up the notebook’s remaining pages. I decided to write about Kuragehime.
The weight of words
It is nothing funny to lose a loved one at such an early age. Children for the most part are unprepared for it and have difficulty dealing with such loss. The absence will most certainly color their maturity and define their personalities in the future (as what is visible with Tsukimi). There are certain things one should never say to children suffering from the passage of someone dear: in our block on pediatrics one of the most memorable things I’ve learned is that one never tells a child who’s lost a loved one not to cry. It’s also no good to lie about the one who died, since children, while being young, are more perceptive than they seem, and lying about who they love will reverberate through their entire lives.
A loving mistake
Despite being unprepared, however, these children’s perceptiveness must not be ignored. Even at such young ages, children often correctly understand a certain event from the priming cues that event presents. In child psychiatry, it is an absolute no-no to be dishonest with a child upon the death of a loved one. As much as we’d like to believe the contrary, children are not idiots. Honesty is extremely important so that the child can face the truth of the event, although that truth must not be forced upon the child at loss: the child must know the truth, but in his due time and in his own terms. It’s no good to shove the truth down his throat.
A costly mistake most parents commit towards their children is lying to them with regard to their (the parent’s) condition for ‘the sake of the child.’ Simple words and statements like this build up a child to have faith in the dishonesty of fantasy, even if the words were said with noble intent. Another mistake is for the parent to tell the child not to grieve: as most of us know, children don’t have a mature sense of ideation, and their actions are mostly rooted in the physical world. If a child was told not to grieve by a loving parent, chances are he will follow that command even if it will be to his detriment in the future (how should the child know how about that?). Taken to the extreme, the child may have difficulty growing up adjusted, as the process of grief was not followed naturally.
The process of grief (described properly by the thanatologist Kubler-Ross) is not something to be taken lightly, as it is only in its completion that people finally move on and face the reality of the loved one’s passage. Because of her mother’s words, Tsukimi was not afforded this normal process of grieving. It is no surprise that her current existence was majorly defined by her mother’s death as she was still unable to move on from it. Because the normal process was stilted and stoppered, it transmogrified into something pathologic. Even after years have passed, Tsukimi was still heavily affected by her mother’s death. Had she been allowed to cry her heart out or had she not been ‘pressured’ by her mother, she may have become more adjusted as a person. She may even be one of the princesses who proudly strut Tokyo. One must recall that the primordial reason to her being an otaku of jellyfish was her excursion with her mother when she was near death: the child is the father of the man.
The OP expanded further
The opening animation of the song, as I mentioned in a previous post, is full of prognostication with regard to the future events in the series. As the allusions speak for themselves, they predict certain events from the short, referential skits.
At the later part of the OP, there was a marriage skit with Shu protesting the marriage of Kuranosuke with an unknown lady. That unknown lady popped up in the preview for the next episode, and it is currently obvious where Shu’s emotions lie. While it may seem disturbing for some that Kuragehime was going to become a love story, I am enjoying the direction it’s been taking as it won’t be anything but an iridescent love story: I’ve had my fill of the Amars and they’re very good, but only as side characters. I hope they will be more than one-dimensional at the end of the series, but I’m thankful that they have shifted focus to the relationships of the main characters. Besides …
Every story is a love story
All stories eventually and inexorably deal with love. The love may not be romantic or erotic in nature, but love can never be skirted from and can never be avoided in any story, as it is a fundamental positive emotion ingrained in every human being. It’s just that the love is directed towards different objects: whether these are inanimate or imaginary, as is the case with the Amars; filial, as with Quentin Compson; or of course, romantic, as with Shu’s towards Tsukimi’s. Every story is essentially a love story, however, perverted or sublimated.
As I’ve mentioned in the previous segment, I’m not too fond of the previous focus on the Amars and their idiosyncratic manifestations of love, so I find that the current direction of the series is more interesting. By placing focus on such a paradoxical emotion among the series’s central entities, the show’s become more colorful.
It has already been pointed out by many that Kuranosuke is highly attractive. An unbiased observer, as observed in the previous episode, funnily pointed out that Kuranosuke was ‘ikemen.’ Whether dressed as a woman or man, he’s highly confident in his beauty. He isn’t delusional: as he pointed out, he was endlessly scouted and his girlfriends were the beauties of his place. Their bitterness towards each other, however, lead to his disappointment in them. Their outward beauty was masked by their ugliness within.
In contrast, Tsukimi did not bathe in the knowledge of her attractiveness: in fact, she tried to shy away from it. She masked her outer beauty with disregard, but it’s quite obvious that she’s a kind girl. When Kuranosuke touched her up, however, she noticed her being a diamond covered with just a ton of dirt. Even then, he still wasn’t able to see her beauty, because he was so focused on her physical makeover. It was only in this episode where they looked into each other’s eyes (as Tsukimi’s disability with her vision made her braver), and he saw the beauty within and without. It was very entertaining to watch because he was in persistent denial with his feelings until he finally realized that his feelings towards her were growing. It’s ironic that despite his overwhelming handsomeness, physical charms and aggressiveness, he’s quite the underdog for Tsukimi’s heart.
I think it’s difficult to root for him, however. He can practically just walk and beauties will flock to him, whereas his brother has difficulty even having relationships with women. Shu has never been besotted as much as he is with Tsukimi, after all.
I sought to write this post topically, since there are a lot of interrelated but highly disparate issues that the current episode tackled. As the puzzle slowly gets constructed, the pieces more and more become connected to the picture. I’d assume that the mystery woman will present complications to the love triangle being fomented by Kuranosuke’s jealousy. She will either be interested in Shu or Kuranosuke, and will be a confounder to the major players involved.
I really don’t think Shu’s turned off with the normal Tsukimi, although I will have to see the future episodes to really tell. The incident during the previous episode was just one bad fluke, after all: he saw her at her worst. Sooner or later, he will have to see her as she really is. I am patiently waiting for the role the new lady will play, since she, at a physical level, is the antipode to Tsukimi: she is quite stylish; she looks mature; and seems social, too. She’s one of the princesses that Tsukimi dreams one day to be (even if she is already one).