19 CommentsAnime Analysis / By Scamp /

Small Character Touches in Sankarea and Kids on the Slope

The dad in Sankarea wants to monopolise his affection for his daughter. The main character in Kids on the Slope really likes this girl and wants to appear cool in front of her. These are two distinct character traits for two characters, but what I really like about both of these traits is how they are presented to us with little cues about how the characters act.

Whenever Rea’s dad goes to touch Rea, he removes his gloves. It’s a very deliberate act too. For every other instance in the anime, he keeps those gloves on. I wouldn’t be surprised if he wore those gloves on the very rare occasions he actually talks to his wife. We already know his wife doesn’t take too kindly to her husband reserving all his affection for his daughter. The gloves are just another visual cue to add to how he reseves this right for only his daughter.

In Kids on the Slope (which is a really dull name), the main character Kaoru takes off his glasses every time he talks to Ritsuko, the girl he likes. Considering he’s already painfully aware of his total lack of coolness, he does everything in his power to appear more attractive in front of her. He also only does this when he’s alone with Ritsuko. Whenever the brasher Sentarou barges into their conversation, the glasses go straight back on again.

These are both very small touches, but clever ones that use the visual medium to help characterisation. I think both Sankarea and Kids on the Slope have fantastic directing, so these small pieces build up. While people tend to pinpoint specific scenes when they talk about great directing, it can be hard as a reviewer to talk about great directing when its the build up of such minor points like this. So this post is dedicated to the little directorial touches. Which is why it’s a small post. Yeah, I’ll pretend that’s the reason why this post is so short.

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17 Comments

  1. acostoss
    Posted April 21, 2012 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

    Brilliantly said. I, too, have taken note of these details. It kind of has me watching more intently, keeping an eye out for other small things I may otherwise miss. Hopefully this increased attention does not go to waste.

  2. Posted April 21, 2012 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    Lovely attention to detail. I breezed right over the gloves in Sankarea, but did notice the glasses in Apollon. You pull the relevancy of such seemingly trivial motions into sharp detail in just a few short paragraphs. So you don’t need to give excuses for your brevity. This post is better than that.

    • Gunslinger
      Posted April 27, 2012 at 10:00 am | Permalink

      It was the other way for me I failed to notice the glasses in sakamichi

  3. luffyluffy
    Posted April 21, 2012 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    I noticed the gloves in Sankarea, but 90% of me watching Sakamichi is blankly staring at the screen with a dumb smile on my face.

    Speaking of Sankarea, holy shit. What do you think of it now after the first few episodes? i really kinda wish you were blogging sakamichi along with space bros but oh well

  4. Posted April 21, 2012 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    Another visual detail I liked about Sankarea, is how it is barely doing any traditional fanservice scenes with Rea herself, even if it does with Ranko. It’s a nice touch that makes the latter’s scenes more lighthearted and generic, while it gives Rea has this aura of “specialness” in contrast.

    Like in Episode 2, when Furuya got to see a flash of panties, but we didn’t. Not because the show is above that (it isn’t), but because Rea’s character is above that.

    • Gunslinger
      Posted April 28, 2012 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

      Haha now that she’s become a zombie she’s no longer accorded that privilege.

      • Posted April 28, 2012 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

        I think she is. I was talking about “traditional fanservice scenes”. Even before I was writing this, Rea had some sexualized shots, but the point is that while Ranko gets the stereotypical ecchi upskirts, and bathing scenes, Rea is getting the more exotic, quirky scenes like “midriff with huge stitches on it”, or “loofa between boobs”.

      • Gunslinger
        Posted April 29, 2012 at 7:01 am | Permalink

        Massaging breasts with phallic objects ?

  5. Posted April 21, 2012 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    Very nice observation skill you got there. I failed to notice Kaoru’s tendency to remove his glasses when he’s alone with Ritsuko, but I think Rea’s dad’s gloves were a giveaway.

    I agree with you that Sankarea is surprisingly well-directed. This may be one of the best shows in terms of direction in recent memory.

  6. Peix
    Posted April 27, 2012 at 5:45 am | Permalink

    Oh hey, it’s back!

  7. SENSEISHUN
    Posted April 27, 2012 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    Sakamichi > Sankrea > Jormungand > Space Bros, so far for me this season. Space Bros will probably end up being #2 for me in the end. Since this is a pretty strong season maybe you could make a comparison post or strengths/weaknesses on some of these anime because there is a lot to talk about this season when it comes to ‘good’

    • Gunslinger
      Posted April 27, 2012 at 10:03 am | Permalink

      Jormungand was pretty high up my list for this but the shootout in the third episode was so badly animated .

      • SENSEISHUN
        Posted April 28, 2012 at 3:23 am | Permalink

        I have high expectations for it simply because it reminds me so much of Black Lagoon. Every seems to have a screw loose, but acts like everything is normal.

  8. Posted April 27, 2012 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

    I think Rea’s dad reserves all of his rights to do something intimately to Rea alone, and it’s not just touching. Notice that he only smiles when he is interacting/sexually harassing Rea as if she’s the only thing he sees or cares of.

    • diz1776
      Posted April 29, 2012 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

      Kodomo no Jikan.
      It’s basically what he’s doing.

  9. 3242
    Posted April 28, 2012 at 7:01 pm | Permalink

    Kids on the slope being a boring name is why I call it Sakamichi No Apollon
    since that makes me go
    “Apollo!”
    much better in my opinion *nodnod*

  10. Posted July 28, 2013 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

    Have you ever thought about including a little bit more than just your articles?

    I mean, what you say is important and everything. But just imagine if you
    added some great images or video clips to give your posts
    more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with pics and clips,
    this website could certainly be one of the very best in its niche.

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2 Trackbacks

  • By Sakamichi no Apollon – 03 » Animees on April 28, 2012 at 12:57 pm

    […] thecartdriver is weer online. Soort van. Hij heeft in ieder geval een detail in de regie ontdekt bij Apollon die mij ontgaan is. Die van Sankarea had ik al wel gespot. […]

  • By Sankarea – 04 » Animees on April 28, 2012 at 3:59 pm

    […] zijn kleine dingetjes als deze die de serie leuk maken. Verder heeft Scamp (van thecartdriver) een stukje geschreven over wat Apollon en Sankarea zo goed maken en voor Sankarea had ik het ook al […]

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