type_wild: (Stare - Subaru and Hokuto)
[personal profile] type_wild



Okay, I'm not expecting this one to be actually gay for one very telling reason: it's based on a novel and it hasn't been picked up overseas. Meaning that the ending is (probably) known and with YoI being the cash cow of the decade for whoever sits on the rights for discs and merch, they'd be all over this one if it would deliver gay stuff.

And yet.

Our tale starts as Protag's dog leads him to Senpai and Senpai's well-defined abs so that Senpai can lead Protag into the sport. Fast forward to high school, where the School Club Is In Trouble, Protag spends several minutes being conflicted about how he doesn't want to be dating his girlfriend, and Senpai is aiming for greater things than Protag had ever dared dream of. And yes, Protag totally spends at least half his dialogue telling us how amazing Senpai is. As a friend put it: If this was a western show, we'd be looking at a gay coming-of-age story, no room for doubt.

It feels more like YoI than Free!, but more than anything it feels like neither of them. It feels shounen in packaging and in the way the boys interact in the locker room; there are well-defined muscles, certainly, but none of the ridiculous fanservice shots that the other two never passed up. There's an entire conversation happening between teenage boys in the bathtub, and they remain seated the entire time.

In short, it feels like it's taking its story seriously. It doesn't feel like it's for girls, and since it's being generally ignored I expect it's just your average shounen ditty.

But man, merely the fact that the protag is the older twin somehow feels like a meaningful statement about masculinity and gender performance, that's how loud this episode was about ~somone's got a crush on Senpai~
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