Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun: Episode 8 – Immersed in Anime’s Enchanting World

The Intricate Dynamics of Shoujo Romances: Diving into Sukitte Ii Na Yo and Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun

A Desperate Need for a Longer Adaptation

In the realm of shoujo romances, two series this season have caught our attention with their unique approach to relationships: Sukitte Ii Na Yo and Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun. However, as avid viewers, we can’t help but feel that these shows would benefit from a longer adaptation to fully explore their complex dynamics. With only four more episodes remaining, there’s a concern that the endings might be rushed or inconclusive. While the supporting cast in both shows adds depth and intrigue, there’s a risk that their story arcs will be sacrificed due to time constraints. It is our hope that these adaptations offer a satisfying conclusion for the viewers, without merely serving as a promotional tool for the manga. The fans deserve a well-crafted ending that does justice to the compelling narratives established thus far.

Contrasting Approaches to Romance

When delving into the world of shoujo romances, it becomes apparent that Sukitte Ii Na Yo and Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun offer intriguingly distinct experiences. While Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun leans towards a more fanciful and comedic style, Sukitte Ii Na Yo dives into the realm of realism with refreshing honesty. Both shows excel in their own ways, but it’s the characters themselves that truly captivate the audience. Mei and Shizuku, the socially isolated bookworms in these respective series, present different perspectives on relationships. Moreover, the stark differences between the male leads contribute to the contrasting appeal of these romance narratives. While Sukitte Ii Na Yo appears “realistic” in its portrayal of teen romance and sex, the engaging nature of the romance in Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun stems from the strength of its characters.

An Analysis of Shizuku’s Complex Duality

Shizuku, the heroine of Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun, stands out with her assertive and unapologetic personality. However, beneath her self-awareness lies a tendency for self-deception. She recognizes and understands the issues surrounding her relationships, but her desire for control conflicts with the chaotic nature of her connection with Haru. Throughout her childhood, Shizuku adopted a strategy of denying the influence of relationships to maintain a sense of control. Moreover, Haru’s unpredictable behavior poses a threat to the emotional walls she has built around herself. Every aspect of his personality challenges her defenses, which may have been erected since her mother’s abandonment. While Shizuku has her flaws, there’s an undeniable allure to her character that keeps her inexorably tied to Haru, perhaps due to his own captivating qualities.

The Enigma of Haru’s Character

Haru, on the other hand, presents a challenging puzzle for both Shizuku and the viewers. It’s impossible to overlook his reckless tendencies, bordering on psychosis. Although he has never intentionally harmed Shizuku or those around him, his fits of rage have unintentionally resulted in physical altercations. Haru embodies the essence of a man-child, with a lack of boundaries, out-of-control temper, and a past that fuels his anger. While it’s plausible to suspect that Haru may suffer from a personality disorder, the responsibility ultimately lies with Shizuku to determine if she should be with him. Unless Haru can demonstrate personal growth and gain control over his demons, their relationship remains a risky endeavor.

The Complexity of Their Relationship

Shizuku and Haru form a captivating yet imperfect couple. Both characters possess flaws that make them intriguing and relatable, drawing the audience further into their complex dynamic. Haru’s shortcomings stem from his impulsiveness rather than a deliberate desire to hurt others. In fact, he often finds himself unable to restrain his actions. However, Haru’s ability to recognize his mistakes and offer sincere apologies shows glimpses of personal growth. In contrast, the malicious intentions behind Yamaken and Yuzan’s actions reflect true cruelty. While Yamaken’s behavior can be attributed to his youthful nature, Yuzan’s thinly veiled malevolence raises questions about his true nature. It remains unclear if Yuzan is merely misunderstood or as unsettling as Haru and Yamaken believe. Nevertheless, Yuzan’s presence seems to serve no purpose other than to sabotage Haru’s efforts, leaving his true motives shrouded in mystery.

The Emergence of the Romantic Triangle

As with any shoujo romance, the emergence of a love triangle is inevitable. In this case, Yamaken appears to be the third vertex. Despite Haru’s faults, it’s difficult to envision him pursuing Ooshima or any other girl unless Shizuku unequivocally rejects him. Haru’s straightforward, obsessive, and somewhat na├»ve nature prevents him from easily shifting his affections. Nonetheless, the stage is set for Yamaken to become a significant factor in the love triangle. As of now, our impressions of Yamaken are less than favorable, as he exudes arrogance and displays a lack of honesty. Considering the complicated state of Shizuku and Haru’s relationship, it’s challenging to remain optimistic about their future. However, Shizuku’s progress this week is commendable. She acknowledges the cruelty implicit in her confusing signals to Haru, recognizing that he lacks the social awareness to decipher them. Moreover, she confronts her own emotional barriers and acknowledges her unpreparedness for a genuine relationship. By admitting her unpreparedness, she takes a step closer to becoming ready and delivers a straightforward response to Haru, relieving him of any lingering doubts. The question that remains is whether Haru can confront his own issues and embark on a journey of personal growth.

Natsume: A Breath of Fresh Air

Amidst the complexities of the main storyline, Natsume offers moments of lightheartedness and innocence. As we observe her in her adorable haunted house costume (despite its ambiguity), her transparent nature becomes a striking contrast to Shizuku. Natsume’s earnestness and vulnerability make her character especially endearing. Her genuine happiness upon being entrusted with a secret and subsequent devastation after being shut down were heart-wrenching to witness. There was a glimmer of hope when Sasayan discovered her crying next to Yuzan, suggesting that he might finally have the chance to open up. Unfortunately, it seems unlikely that the anime adaptation will fully explore Sasayan’s hidden depths, an unfortunate oversight given the potential richness of his character.


In the intricate realm of shoujo romances, Sukitte Ii Na Yo and Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun stand out for their diverging approaches to storytelling. While Sukitte Ii Na Yo offers a realistic depiction of teenage romance and sexuality, Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun presents a more whimsical and theatrical narrative. Both series captivate viewers with their flawed yet fascinating characters. The complicated dynamics between Shizuku and Haru in Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun keep the audience on edge, pondering whether their relationship is ultimately sustainable. As we follow their journey, we also become enamored with the endearing innocence of Natsume. Despite limitations in their respective adaptations, these shoujo romances offer glimpses into the intricate human experiences of love, growth, and self-discovery.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Are there any plans for a longer adaptation of Sukitte Ii Na Yo and Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun?

While fans may yearn for a longer adaptation of these beloved series, it ultimately depends on the production companies and the demand from the audience. Although a longer adaptation would provide more room for exploration and character development, financial considerations and scheduling constraints often shape the decision-making process. It is advisable for fans to show their support by engaging with the existing anime and considering purchasing the manga to further demonstrate their enthusiasm for