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Old 2013-02-24, 04:29   Link #521
Kazu-kun
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Originally Posted by thundrakkon View Post
At this moment, that is all that he can focus on. He does not have a karuta club at school, and his goal is to win the individual match to probably go and be a part of Chihaya's club. Hence, it makes sense that he is focused on individual. It is a goal that will eventually lead to team.
I'm not sure about that. I think learning the importance of team competition will be part of his character development if he starts to get a little more focus. That's why I think at this moment he really doesn't understand Chihaya's approach to Karuta.
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Old 2013-02-24, 06:03   Link #522
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Originally Posted by Kirarakim View Post
And yet in a significant way they actually did not connect this episode. Chihaya talked about the joy of having teammates but Arata said he wants to focus on individual matches.
To be fair, it could be said that their connection is that they can casually talk about karuta without Arata going - goddamnit, stop talking about karuta!
"It always comes back to karuta!" <- said by every member with a disgusted face.


Anyway, it's clear there is a difference between the Chihaya and Arata in their approach to karuta.
Chihaya is overly ambitious/greedy, setting way too many goals and is clueless on how to achieve (or prioritize) them, whereas Arata only sets one goal at a time, and even scaled back from his original goal of being Meijin (for the time being).
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Old 2013-02-24, 06:44   Link #523
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Well to be fair I am not saying Arata & Chihaya are not connected by Karuta & their friendship but in that scene I felt there was actually a brief distance in thought which is why I found it ironic to talk about the deep connection they have specifically after this episode.

I do think they have an important connection but I interpreted that scene very differently. Even Chihaya kind of briefly reacted to it and then had to say but I care about winning the individual competition too.
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Old 2013-02-24, 12:03   Link #524
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I agree with Kirarakim--the phone call marks out a point of conflict rather than connection between Chihaya and Arata.

Partly this is a misunderstanding. Arata says what he does just since he shares Chihaya's own deepest motivation, and her reason for preferring teams, which is to play karuta forever with Arata and Taichi.

Nevertheless, the phone calls comes forward to develop the key theme of team versus individual play.

One of the things I learned from Chihaya's mom in this episode is that this is not an either-or, one to the exclusion of the other. Seeing both of her daughters depressed, on the verge of quitting their dreams, Ayase-san buys Chihaya a hakama. There follows that beautiful cascade: her mother's commitment reinvigorates Chihaya to start practicing karuta again. And then Chitose, who has spent the whole episode saying really outrageous things about karuta and Chihaya, finds in Chihaya's dedication the inspiration to throw away the college applications and to rededicate herself to her dream of becoming an actress. The family comes together, through a mother's individual act for the sake of one daughter, to inspire both daughters to renew their individual dreams. At each point the three women act as individuals, but in so doing, they bring the family together. It is just as Harada-sensei says: “An individual match is a team match, and a team match is an individual match.” It is really very wonderful and inspiring to see how this interplay between individual and family works out.

I think Kazu-kun is absolutely right to point out that learning Chihaya's perspective on team play will be an important character development for Arata. +1.

I continue to think the romance is just a tease. To torture Taichi and his fans, apparently...S for Suetsugo-Sadist
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Old 2013-02-24, 12:47   Link #525
Kirarakim
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Originally Posted by hyperborealis View Post
I continue to think the romance is just a tease. To torture Taichi and his fans, apparently...S for Suetsugo-Sadist
I admit I am might be biased because of my own feelings for Taichi

But I think because of all the "torture" Suetsugo puts him through, she must really like him. Like she wants him to struggle so his rewards in the end will be that more sweet.
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Old 2013-02-24, 12:53   Link #526
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It's so conflicting... On one hand I want Taichi's love to be returned... but on the other hand I really can't see Chihaya fall in love with anyone...
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Old 2013-02-24, 14:06   Link #527
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It would fundamentally change the anime if Chihaya were to fall in love with anybody. It would stop being about karuta, Team Mizusawa, Chihaya's dream of becoming queen, etc., and would become instead about Chihaya and Boy X. That's why the romance is only ever a tease. Shippers need to just give it up.

Golly, Kirarakim, are you saying Taichi's sufferings portend sweet rewards in the future? So, if Chihaya starts going out with Arata, that's so Taichi's "rewards in the end will be that more sweet?" I think there is a problem with this logic...
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Old 2013-02-24, 14:13   Link #528
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Originally Posted by hyperborealis View Post
So, if Chihaya starts going out with Arata, that's so Taichi's "rewards in the end will be that more sweet?" I think there is a problem with this logic...
Well, if Chihaya started going out with Arata so early that'd mean their relationship will fail. So, yeah, it could make Taichi's potential reward "more sweet". Then again, the point is moot, because if Chihaya really starts going out with someone it won't be till the very end of the series. And even then, it may not happen.
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Old 2013-02-24, 14:15   Link #529
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Originally Posted by hyperborealis View Post
It would fundamentally change the anime if Chihaya were to fall in love with anybody. It would stop being about karuta, Team Mizusawa, Chihaya's dream of becoming queen, etc., and would become instead about Chihaya and Boy X. That's why the romance is only ever a tease. Shippers need to just give it up.
American trailers don't agree
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Old 2013-02-24, 14:32   Link #530
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Originally Posted by hyperborealis View Post
It would fundamentally change the anime if Chihaya were to fall in love with anybody. It would stop being about karuta, Team Mizusawa, Chihaya's dream of becoming queen, etc., and would become instead about Chihaya and Boy X. That's why the romance is only ever a tease. Shippers need to just give it up.
I agree that romance is not the main point of the series but it obviously is a point. Will Chihaya choose neither? Perhaps and I am not denying that possibility but there is a love triangle here. It's actually a very well written one because who is going to end up with who is not entirely clear and all characters are sympathetic.

I think there is nothing wrong with shipping and routing for a couple (although I still think both pairs have an equal chance at this point). What is wrong when shippers feel this need to bash characters when they don't do things that pertain to their ship.

Quote:
Golly, Kirarakim, are you saying Taichi's sufferings portend sweet rewards in the future? So, if Chihaya starts going out with Arata, that's so Taichi's "rewards in the end will be that more sweet?" I think there is a problem with this logic...
Quite honestly I have no idea what you are saying here and I wasn't just talking about Taichi's suffering in terms of his feelings for Chihaya but in terms of karuta too.

Although the manga-ka gives ALL the characters a hard time and winning never comes easily, Taichi especially fails more than he wins. I think this is definitely on purpose on the part of the manga-ka to develop his character. She wants him to struggle before he can be rewarded so that reward will be more meaningful.

As for his reward being Chihaya, I never said that. However Taichi is not suffering because Chihaya is with or is going to end up with Arata, he is suffering by his own inability to let Chihaya know how he feels out of fear that he will lose her. And I Do think it is possible he might lose her, but that is a chance he has to take.

Whether Taichi ends up with Chihaya or not I do believe he will only find happiness if he lets his feelings out.
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Old 2013-02-24, 15:25   Link #531
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Originally Posted by Kirarakim View Post
I agree that romance is not the main point of the series but it obviously is a point. Will Chihaya choose neither? Perhaps and I am not denying that possibility but there is a love triangle here. It's actually a very well written one because who is going to end up with who is not entirely clear and all characters are sympathetic.

I think there is nothing wrong with shipping and routing for a couple (although I still think both pairs have an equal chance at this point). What is wrong when shippers feel this need to bash characters when they don't do things that pertain to their ship.



As for his reward being Chihaya, I never said that. However Taichi is not suffering because Chihaya is with or is going to end up with Arata, he is suffering by his own inability to let Chihaya know how he feels out of fear that he will lose her. And I Do think it is possible he might lose her, but that is a chance he has to take.

Whether Taichi ends up with Chihaya or not I do believe he will only find happiness if he lets his feelings out.

I agree with that assessment. Chihayafuru could be a sports manga pretending to be romance manga or a romance manga packaged in a sports manga. The line is not definite there, which makes it all the interesting.

Taichi could be the perennial unrequited lover of many romance stories, always faithful and very supportive, but never to be the one to take the center stage. That I, think was what Taichi thinking of himself. Always behind the shadow of Arata in a slow wallow of self-pity. This is something that Taichi should learn to strive from. He had always played games that he thinks he can be no. 1 at, avoiding games that there's someone who better than him, like Kurata with Arata. The game of Kurata is Chihaya's heart, he should step up and strengthen his resolve that he can be better than Arata, no matter the handicaps.

When they were kids Arata called Taichi a coward, not much I think from playing dirty but for not man enough to actually tell Chihaya his true feelings for her and not hiding behind from his bully behavior. Even then I think Arata knows what Taichi is already feeling which makes it really awkward since Arata has feelings for Chihaya also. Both guys maintain this silent well understood balance De tente regarding their love for Chihaya. Both guys have trouble in expressing their feelings, making each of them half of a whole of what could have been a perfect partner for Chihaya. It's their journey through these challenges that adds an extra layer to the excitement of the show.
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Old 2013-02-24, 15:39   Link #532
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Originally Posted by Kirarakim View Post
I agree that romance is not the main point of the series but it obviously is a point. Will Chihaya choose neither? Perhaps and I am not denying that possibility but there is a love triangle here. It's actually a very well written one because who is going to end up with who is not entirely clear and all characters are sympathetic.

I think there is nothing wrong with shipping and routing for a couple (although I still think both pairs have an equal chance at this point). What is wrong when shippers feel this need to bash characters when they don't do things that pertain to their ship.
See, I don't think there is a love triangle. There is Taichi in love with Chihaya and that is it. We have just hints Arata is interested in her (ie his relief to find out Chihaya and Taichi are not going out), but nothing specific. And Chihaya is an absolute cipher. There is nothing to say she has even the notion of romance in her head--your own argument that Chihaya's response to Sumire has no romantic connotations is the best evidence for this fact.

Romance is a point of characterization, especially for Taichi (it's noticeable only by its absence in the others, as a sign of immaturity). It can't become the defining point of the story, because then the genre of the narrative itself changes. Shippers' demands for specificity and clarity require the story to become the romance novel it is not. So the romantic elements function only as a tease to the viewers, and as a source of suffering for Taichi. It is never going to go anywhere, or at least not until the manga is finished. So I say it again: the romance is a tease.


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Originally Posted by Kirarakim View Post
Although the manga-ka gives ALL the characters a hard time and winning never comes easily, Taichi in especially fails more than he wins. I think this is definitely on purpose on the part of the manga-ka to develop his character. She wants him to struggle before he can be rewarded so that reward will be more meaningful.

As for his reward being Chihaya, I never said that. However Taichi is not suffering because Chihaya is with or is going to end up with Arata, he is suffering by his own ability to let Chihaya know how he feels out of fear that he will lose her. And please note he might lose her, but I think that is a chance he has to take. Whether Taichi ends up with Chihaya or not I do believe he will only find happiness if he lets his feelings out.
I wasn't very clear in the first place--I was questioning whether a person's suffering now portends success later. Were you saying that? I might have misunderstood you.

Taichi has a room full of trophies and flocks of girls throwing themselves at his feet. He is only interesting so far as he possesses neither. Taichi's suffering and failure humanizes him, so that we can care for him in the first place and admire him for his efforts to achieve his goals. We viewers would like him to succeed, and it would be very satisfying were he to do so, but that success is immaterial to the literary purpose of his suffering, which is to make us care for him. We already do so, and will continue to even if or especially if he finally fails. That's why I don't think there's any connection between Taichi's distress in this episode and whatever his ultimate fate is going to be down the road.

By the way, I respect Taichi more for not forcing his own romantic agenda on Chihaya. Romantic love has its selfish element, which Taichi, to his credit, refuses to go along with, whatever his feelings and personal hurt. He allows Chihaya to pursue her karuta dreams, rather than demand that she make a choice to fulfill his own. Taichi is an honorable lover.
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Old 2013-02-24, 16:05   Link #533
Kazu-kun
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Originally Posted by hyperborealis View Post
but that success is immaterial to the literary purpose of his suffering, which is to make us care for him. We already do so, and will continue to even if or especially if he finally fails. That's why I don't think there's any connection between Taichi's distress in this episode and whatever his ultimate fate is going to be down the road.

I kind of disagree with this. It's a typical storytelling device to build drama by having the characters struggle and fail, and then revert that into success in the climax of the story. Most stories work like that, so I wouldn't be so sure that Taichi's current suffering doesn't portent success at the end of the route. Of course, this is just a device, not a rule, so I'm not claiming that current failure will lead to success in the future for sure. Chances are it will though, since most stories do work that way.
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Old 2013-02-24, 16:14   Link #534
Kirarakim
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See, I don't think there is a love triangle. There is Taichi in love with Chihaya and that is it. We have just hints Arata is interested in her (ie his relief to find out Chihaya and Taichi are not going out), but nothing specific. And Chihaya is an absolute cipher. There is nothing to say she has even the notion of romance in her head--your own argument that Chihaya's response to Sumire has no romantic connotations is the best evidence for this fact.
I agree and disagree with you here. I agree that only Taichi's feelings are absolutely certain when it comes to the romance while Chihaya and Arata's are not clear, but I actually think that is all on purpose on Suetsugu's part to make the romantic element unclear.

I think there is definitely indication that Chihaya could love Arata but does not realize or understand her own feelings. I think this is what Taichi believes. Or it could be that Taichi is misinterpreting strong feelings of friendship for love.

As for Arata we see so little of him that it is even harder to grasp how he feels, again does Arata care for Chihaya as a friend or something more.

However, I don't think the love triangle doesn't exist because only Taichi's feelings are clear cut. The love triangle is being set up for the audience not just the characters.



Quote:
Romance is a point of characterization, especially for Taichi (it's noticeable only by its absence in the others, as a sign of immaturity). It can't become the defining point of the story, because then the genre of the narrative itself changes. Shippers' demands for specificity and clarity require the story to become the romance novel it is not. So the romantic elements function only as a tease to the viewers, and as a source of suffering for Taichi. It is never going to go anywhere, or at least not until the manga is finished. So I say it again: the romance is a tease.
Oh I agree with you we are not going to find out until the end or at least until near the end of the story. I don't think that makes it tease though.

And yes Karuta is and should be the main focus of the story but I think the reason why fans focus so much on romance because just like how we are never sure who is going to win that match of karuta we are not sure who is going to end up with who. And that type of uncertainty makes for good storytelling.




Quote:
I wasn't very clear in the first place--I was questioning whether a person's suffering now portends success later. Were you saying that? I might have misunderstood you.
No, I was saying I believe the manga-ka specifically gives Taichi a hard time now because he will succeed in the end and it will be more rewarding. As in a story when you have a character struggle it means more when they succeed. Please note I didn't say what that success would pertain too.

Does struggling always mean you will succeed in real life, unfortunately no. But I think it's not wrong for a reader to expect to see this for a character. Success can of course come in many different forms.

Quote:
Taichi's suffering and failure humanizes him, so that we can care for him in the first place and admire him for his efforts to achieve his goals. We viewers would like him to succeed, and it would be very satisfying were he to do so, but that success is immaterial to the literary purpose of his suffering, which is to make us care for him. We already do so, and will continue to even if or especially if he finally fails. That's why I don't think there's any connection between Taichi's distress in this episode and whatever his ultimate fate is going to be down the road.
I wasn't just talking about this episode but all episodes. The manga-ka pays in my opinion considerable attention on Taichi and his constant struggle for me to think there won't be some ultimate meaning to it all.

Of course it is admirable that despite failure, Taichi doesn't give up and keeps struggling. This is certainly part of his character growth but I don't believe Tachi's ultimate purpose in the story is just to struggle & that he won't earn something in the end.

Quote:
By the way, I respect Taichi more for not forcing his own romantic agenda on Chihaya. Romantic love has its selfish element, which Taichi, to his credit, refuses to go along with, whatever his feelings and personal hurt. He allows Chihaya to pursue her karuta dreams, rather than demand that she make a choice to fulfill his own. Taichi is an honorable lover.
While I would like to say that Taichi is just being admirable I think he is also acting out of fear of rejection.

Also I think Taichi finally telling Chihaya how he feels is not just about forcing her to make a choice but being honest. Perhaps now isn't the best time to tell her but I think he should eventually whether she will share his feelings or not.
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Old 2013-02-24, 18:11   Link #535
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The romantic part of me thinks the same way of Kirarakim.
I mean, to me Taichi is the most developed character, we even usually see his point of view among all the other characters. So I asked myself, which author would dedicate all this time and narrative efforts to one single character if she doesn't even like him. If I had to say she really like this character. So the conclusion Kirarakim pointed out would sound quite logic. It's a typical storytelling device as Kazu-kun has said. And I do talk about him ending up with Chihaya. Because so far I can't see him step over it to the point to find another equal "reward" that would satisfy him (though I think in Taichi's mind his love path id completely detached by his Karuta path) and the audience as much as that. Namely, him becoming a Karuta master or overcoming his own flaws. The latter is already happening and the former would be a bit unrealistic to me. So they havent' the same weight. Unless he would overcome his feelings for her, but I think he will not.
But the rational part of me agrees with hyperborealis, the so called love triangle is just a tease for Taichi and for the audience, for now. A way to sympathize and root for him. And if anything things will become even harder for Taichi. And not just for Arata return. But because they hinted to some connections between him and Shinobu which could configure a Chihaya being in Taichi's shoes. And it would double the hard situation of Taichi. Despite probably they don't share any feelings. But doesn't matter.
If the author would have relieved a bit Taichi love situation I would have expected a new character who could be a (real) love interest for him, someone like Shinobu. (quite a commonplace as a narrative choice but still).

On a side note, I do agree that he should express his feelings. Usually it is really liberating, whatever the outcome would be. (And for that reason he never will do it )
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Old 2013-02-24, 23:23   Link #536
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I agree and disagree with you here. I agree that only Taichi's feelings are absolutely certain when it comes to the romance while Chihaya and Arata's are not clear, but I actually think that is all on purpose on Suetsugu's part to make the romantic element unclear.

I think there is definitely indication that Chihaya could love Arata but does not realize or understand her own feelings. I think this is what Taichi believes. Or it could be that Taichi is misinterpreting strong feelings of friendship for love.

As for Arata we see so little of him that it is even harder to grasp how he feels, again does Arata care for Chihaya as a friend or something more.

However, I don't think the love triangle doesn't exist because only Taichi's feelings are clear cut. The love triangle is being set up for the audience not just the characters.
Arata is still talking to her so he has feelings. Guys don't normally talk to females unless there is some interest. Chihaya definitely wants to see Arata. Ep. 7's ending demonstrated that nicely. Chihaya and Arata's problem is distance. Once they are close, then it should play out nicely.

Taichi needs to move on to greener pastures imo.

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On a side note, I do agree that he should express his feelings. Usually it is really liberating, whatever the outcome would be. (And for that reason he never will do it )
It could break up the harmony within the competitive club as its a small one, especially if she declines. It could lead to one or both of them leaving the club due to it. Club losing its rank etc due to loss of talented members with people at their school gunning for them. Another reason why they can't have a Chihaya x Taichi.
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Old 2013-02-24, 23:42   Link #537
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Chihaya and Arata's problem is distance.
I don't know. More than liking or loving Arata, Chihaya idolizes him. For her, Arata is the personification of karuta, a god incarnate, not a prospective boyfriend. Maybe if they were closer, she would start to see him, you know, as a human . But I don't know.
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Old 2013-02-25, 00:10   Link #538
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I don't know. More than liking or loving Arata, Chihaya idolizes him. For her, Arata is the personification of karuta, a god incarnate, not a prospective boyfriend. Maybe if they were closer, she would start to see him, you know, as a human . But I don't know.
Ep. 7 showed something different. No idolization in her desire to see him. That was a "She wants to see him" moment. This is a shojo title. Idolization has probably ended already. It only extends so far when you're competitors anyways. And normal females lose that idolization stuff when they mature and have relationships.
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Old 2013-02-25, 00:13   Link #539
Kazu-kun
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Ep. 7 showed something different. No idolization in her desire to see him.
Let's just wait and see what happens when they actually meet.
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Old 2013-02-25, 00:17   Link #540
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Guys don't normally talk to females unless there is some interest.
I will let my guy friends know this

But really this is fiction. I don't think either Taichi/Chihaya or Arata/Chihaya is more likely at this point. Anyone can find "scenes" to support their pairing. Heck at this point as has been already pointed out Chihaya/Karuta seems the most likely .

And also this isn't shoujo but josei and I am convinced Suetsugu is keeping things purposely ambiguous at this point.
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