Glasslip – Episode 04 Review
Glasslip 04 – Kakeru Heads for a Different Series
I hereby pronounce Glasslip dead. Or maybe I should say that I hereby pronounce that I would very much enjoy seeing all of the characters in Glasslip die gruesome, shocking deaths as soon as possible. I can’t handle another week of this dull, uninteresting crap.
I’m not even going to bother with a synopsis this week. Not enough happened that I think we need to review it here.
This series is just awful. Nothing is happening. Rather, it’s more like things (of questionable significance) are happening, but they don’t really matter.
For example, Touko discovered in Episode 2 that she and Kakeru can see/hear the future together. That’s pretty interesting!
But it seems like Glasslip totally forgot about that!!! At the very least, having prophetic visions isn’t important enough for Glasslip to warrant any actual screen time. What the hell? Touko finds out she can see the future, gets worked up enough about it to call Kakeru to chat about it, and then…. AND THEN NOTHING. She’s gotta go eat some pork cutlets. Oh, and then she has to go hiking with her pals. Oh yeah, and then it’s imperative that she laze around drawing pictures of chickens. Future-vision? Huh? What future-vision? Oh, right… I can see the future. I sure do hope my future is a good one, blah-dee-dah.
And to think that it would be so desperately boring….
And Kakeru is just as bad. He’s finally found the girl that communicates with him from the future. That’s a big damn deal! But what does he do? He admires the pan-warmed Canadian bacon his dad made, blathers on with his dad about what could be some character-developing content but simply turns into nothing, and then…. He goes for a walk in the woods. Because obviously, if you found the girl of your dreams, you wouldn’t make an effort to get to know her or talk to her, right? Clearly, the correct course of action is to just check dream-girl off your list and get on with your camping-in-the-yard lifestyle. Who gives a shit about seeing the future, much less trying to figure out how it works, or if it’s legit, right?
This is one series where I care a lot more about the supporting cast than I do for the main characters. Hiro is doing his best to spend some quality time with Sachi; he even asked her out on a date. That’s awesome! Go Hiro! He wasn’t incredibly smooth when he asked her out, but who cares, at least he is trying his best to make his desires into reality. Sachi seems alright too. I think she’s got a pretty good idea that Hiro is interested in her – it definitely seemed that way last week. That’s how it would be for any reasonable person. If a person you’ve known for a while suddenly starts stammering and blushing around you, it means that the way they feel about you has likely changed. It may simply indicate that they are embarrassed over ripping a loud fart when you were around, but if you’re a young boy and girl (especially in an anime) chances are that they want to go out with you.
Yukinari is also a reasonable human being. Even though he’s a bit stubborn by continuing to be in love with Touko when she’s made it clear that she isn’t interested… That’s completely normal. You don’t fall out of love overnight! He seems like he is making an attempt to be around her and get used to her post-rejection. On top of that, he’s making it very clear to Touko that he still has feelings for her, and that confessing to her was a huge deal for him. He brings up the confession, he says he can’t be in the same room alone with her, and he questions her about Kakeru. That is the 16-year-old boy way of saying: ”Confessing to you was a monumental event in my adolescence, and I am totally heartbroken that you rejected me. However, I fell in love with you because I appreciate you as a person, and even if we can’t be lovers, I still want to continue our relationship. Please understand that I care for you deeply, and I will be able to be around you and it not feel uncomfortable to either of us, but it may take a little time.” He’s being really cool, in my opinion.
Yannagi is definitely the most interesting one in the series. She sees that Kakeru likes Touko; she’s known that since episode 1 (as should have everyone else). The most important thing is: Yannagi isn’t making an ass of herself about it. She likes Yukinari and she’s doing what she needs to do to give that relationship a chance (well, except for… should I bother mentioning the brother-sister thing here?). For example, she eavesdrops on Yukinari confessing to Touko. Afterwards, she doesn’t run in and passionately declare her love for her brother – she does the cool, calm, and collected thing. She simply acts like a fun, supportive, and reliable woman. And, ladies, that’s exactly what you should do in a situation like that. If the guy you love loves someone else and has never noticed you, he probably never will. However, showing him how cool and fun and supportive you are, consistently, can sometimes turn his feelings around. It’s highly unlikely, but I’ve seen it happen.
The other thing I like so much about Yannagi is that she’s doing her best to “manage” Touko. Be forewarned that I may be reading into this too much; this is Glasslip, a series that appears to have no fondness for character depth. Anyways, what I mean by “manage” is this: she’s trying to maintain the friendship with Touko, but she’s also trying to keep Touko off of Yukinari.
For example, if I was in love with Bob, but Bob was in love with Jane (and I knew that)…. The first order of business would be to get as friendly with Jane as possible, so that she will feel close to me and will not be able to accept Bob’s advances – because she would feel guilty about hurting my feelings. Then, when Bob is all sad because Jane rejected him, I would find reasons to be around Bob a whole lot more than normal, to show him that I am a really awesome girl (and that I’m actually better than Jane – which would probably involve a bit of trash-talking about Jane). Bob, fresh from the sting of rejection will look for any reason to decide that Jane is an unworthy girl, and after offering him those reasons, he’ll get with me to restore his broken pride.
See? It’s astoundingly simple, and almost every girl does this at least once in their lives. Actually, that’s really the absolute minimum of weird catty things that girls do to capture male attention and compete with each other. Surprisingly, it’s a subject that isn’t represented very accurately in drama/literature/etc. I have no idea why though, because I’m sure you could ask any woman about it and they’d be able to explain all the subtleties of girl-fighting. That being said, I think Glasslip is doing a shockingly good job of portraying that via Yannagi’s character. Unfortunately though, that is the only thing that Glasslip is doing right, and I am certain they will screw it up, since they have screwed up everything else so far.
Touko sucks. Touko is the absolute worst. Touko is the epitome of the awful, catty, deeply ignorant, self-centered, attention-whoring, two-faced, insensitive, clueless, rude, careless, overly-dramatic, and selfish traits of woman. She’s a total bitch – even Yukinari thinks so. Of course, Yukinari is okay with it for now since he thinks she’s hot… But his opinion is strong enough that he comes out and says it to her.
My biggest problem with Touko is that she doesn’t give a rat’s ass about the future-thing. How lame can the girl be? Her inability to conceive of the gift of prophecy as an important thing is totally ruining the anime for all of us viewers (haha, okay that was kind of a joke). Seriously though, I had a big problem with her and Yannagi’s interaction in this episode. First of all, she calls Yannagi out of the house, to the docks, which appear to be pretty far away from Yannagi’s place. WTF?!?! Yannagi just got out of the hospital with a sprained ankle! She’s on crutches for god’s sake! How insensitive and totally thoughtless can Touko be? Sure, I understand that since Touko wanted to talk about Yukinari, it couldn’t be at Touko’s house… So give it a rest for a few days until Yanngi gets better! What made it worse was that Touko called Yannagi out to talk about herself. Yeah, whatever, Touko gave a nod to politeness by asking Yannagi if she would be okay to meet at the dock… But when they arrived, Touko didn’t say, “Are you feeling okay?” or anything of the sort. She just launched into, “Oh, I’m soooooo sorry that Yukinari confessed to meeeee.”
When Yannagi steps up and tries to be the better person by saying it is okay, that’s when Touko commits the worst crime a friend can commit. She says, “Oooooooh, but it’s sooooo not okaaaay! Because I feeeeelt something for Yukinari when he was confessing to meeeeee!! I was all aflutter!” Shut up, ho. Can you possibly be a bigger bitch, Touko?
Maybe Touko didn’t read the “How to be a Somewhat Decent or at least Moderately Acceptable Friend” manual. If she had, she should know that when your bestie’s crush has just confessed to you, you are supposed to go to great lengths to let your best friend know that you didn’t care at all, that you think he is stupid and ugly and dumb, but that of course he wouldn’t be those things if he were confessing to your best friend. You have to try hard to make sure that you and your friend are very clear that you have no interest in your friend’s crush at all. So, what did Touko do? Even though she and Yannagi had already worked things out on the hike, she had to wait until Yannagi was injured, right after she saw Yukinari and Yannagi getting close. And then she called Yannagi out to bring up the drama again, and essentially implied that she was still on the fence about returning Yukinari’s affection. All the while, she knew it was hurtful to Yannagi to rub all that stuff in her face – she should have easily seen Yannagi act uncomfortable and sad. If nothing else, she had a future-vision in which she made Yannagi cry – but, oh yeah, those visions don’t matter anymore in Glasslip. What a bitch.
Adding insult to injury, Touko then proceeds to be a total bitch to Yukinari when he sees her at school. He’s trying so hard to tell her that his feelings are hurt but that he honestly cares about her beyond being her lover. What does Touko do? She jumps up and looks at Yukinari like he’s infected with some horrifying infectious disease when he tries to talk about his feelings. Come on, how would you feel if someone looked at you like that when you were trying to say difficult and embarrassing things?? And then… And then… This bitch starts FLIRTING WITH HIM. How soulless can this girl be? Now that’s she’s realized she has him in the palm of her hand, she starts toying with him. She’s all giggly and blush-y as soon as she forces him to start expounding on what he thinks is hot about her. I suppose that since Touko is an unrivalled egomaniac, she gets turned on when people talk about how sexy she is.
As if that wasn’t enough of Touko-the-relentless-bitch in a single episode, there’s the typical-anime-romantic-misunderstanding scene. Touko sees Yannagi and Kakeru in an embrace, and loses it. Can someone please tell me what right Touko has to get jealous of Yannagi and Kakeru? Yannagi has been saying since Episode 2 that Kakeru is hot, and since it has just been made painfully clear that Yukinari isn’t into her, it seems only right that she would move on. Touko has vehemently denied to everyone that she is interested in Kakeru (even though anyone with a brain knows she actually is). However, I have to say, “Sorry, Touko,” Yannagi followed the girl-code by telling Touko in advance she was interested in Yukinari, and when Yannagi asked (which she clearly did on the dock) if Touko was interested in Kakeru, Touko said no. By the rules, Kakeru is fair game. It was just an anime-worthy accident, but I’m sure the incident will precipitate a veritable riot. Touko will flee with passive-aggressive flair, and make long, dramatic (not-to-be-taken-seriously) speeches about how Yannagi should be with Kakeru because she feels guilty that Yukinari confessed to her instead of Yannagi.
Touko sucks. She wants all the guys to belong to her. She likes that Yukinari is into her; she flirts with him and leads him on even though she rejected him, and she won’t give him up to Yannagi. She won’t admit she’s interested in Kakeru, but she loses her shit when she thinks he’s flirting with Yannagi. And to make matters even worse, when all of “her boys” are unavailable, she goes to the coffee shop and starts asking for Hiro. What does she want with Hiro? Will she try to seduce him too?
So, what will come of all this?
I think it would be whole-new-levels-of-amazing if Touko transformed from being the clueless, pretty, kind-of-mystical, anime heroine (aka Manaka from Nagi no Asukara) into being an outright evil, self-centered bitch who demands that all the boys pay attention to her. That would be so outrageously cool for an anime to do.
Unfortunately though, I have no hope left for this series. Last week, I was eager for some explanations and got none. The future-vision stuff was untouched, Kakeru didn’t interact with the main characters in a meaningful way, and the plot didn’t progress at all. This week was exactly the same. Even though we “know” that the main group of five is important and that Kakeru is important, they aren’t interacting. At this point, Kakeru could never show up in the series again, and I wouldn’t be surprised. He doesn’t matter, and the supernatural elements he introduced don’t matter either – at least, the series has not given me any indication that they do.
Even more importantly, the main characters don’t really matter to me. You don’t get the feeling, from watching the series, that any of this “drama” between them will have any lasting effect on their lives. They ignore their own feelings, try to make everything seem fine, and they try to play emotionally significant events off like they don’t matter. However, the problem with the series is that the audience hasn’t been shown that those emotional events do matter. Sure, we know that Yannagi is hurt when Touko rubs Yukinari’s confession in her face, but we have no idea how it affects their home life. And we know that Hiro has been thinking about Sachi a lot, but we have no idea if Sachi gives a damn. It’s just not shown to the viewers. For an anime that is relying entirely on a very slow-paced, character-based, slice-of-life type of setting, it is imperative that the audience be able to connect with the characters. So far, that hasn’t happened. We have not been clued in to the characters’ thoughts, feelings, or struggles, and it’s impossible to connect with them without that.
I’m really disappointed with Glasslip. It proposed itself as being a supernatural drama, and so far it is neither. Already 1/3 of the way through, Glasslip is nothing more than a dull slice-of-life with worse-than-average characters. Sure, it’s fun to go off on a tangent and pretend that the characters’ actions are meaningful, but in reality, they are not. My point again is: if the series does not care about the events and plot, why should I?
I have no hope left that the future-visions of Touko and Kakeru will play a prominent role in this story. At this point, I don’t have much hope that we will even see teen-romance-drama that is worth watching. Myself and others in the blog-o-sphere are begging for suicides or murders, because the only thing that can save the series at this point is a hugely disturbing plot twist. Sadly, even if the gang started dying next week, I doubt there would be enough time left to make the series feel anything other than rushed and contrived.
I have a feeling that this coupling will not work out.
Episode Rating: 3.0/10.0
What do you guys think? How many of you have decided to drop the series? Does anyone have any good ideas about what would make it better?