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.