Friendly Talks With Arthifis: DAKAICHI Mid-Season Thoughts

Introduction:

Arthifis and I are back with the next part of our collaboration. We’re five episodes in to Dakaichi and a lot has happened (or at least we had plenty to say about what has been happening) so we recently had a fantastic conversation about the show and how it is going. If you missed our first impressions chat, be sure to check it out and remember we’ll be talking about Goblin Slayer over on Arthifis’ place so if you haven’t seen that post be sure to go and give it a read. For now though, let’s get into it.

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Conversation:

Hey Arthifis! How are you this week?

Hey there Karandi! I’m really good to be honest! 🙂 I’m cooking some secret project which is making me watch a lot of Anime… And I’m having a LOT of fun to be honest ahah what about you?

If I’m honest, I’m not in a great space at the moment but that’s just because I’ve been super busy with work and I can see the next few weeks are going to spiral out of control (to the point where I’m looking at maybe having to suspend some posts on my blog in a couple of weeks just to take a breather). Still, it isn’t all bad news. I’m off to a convention next weekend (great timing, I know). I’m really curious about this project of yours though. You’ve hinted at it a few times.

That’s a bummer to hear! 😦 I actually understand you though… My work has been getting busier and busier and I’m actually struggling a lot to be able to balance Blog with work… Well, in fact I just stopped writing on the blog for the time being completely. But, well… That convention seems to be a lot of fun! So hopefully it will be something good eheh 🙂 Eheh yeah I know, I want to surprise everyone, but at the same time I’m so proud and having so much fun that is being difficult to actually have my mouth completely shut about it xD

Okay, so we’re starting off with Dakaichi today. And we’ve both watched up to episode 5. I’m curious as to what you think of the show so far.

Dakaichi4b

Well, I have to say that I discovered in episode 5 that I have fallen in love with the characters and their romance without even realizing it 😀 But, if that’s ok with you I would like to comment on episode 5 more at the end of the post because I don’t really want to lose all the commentary about the love I have from the series until episode 4. What about you?

Yes, episode 5 does need its own kind of section because it goes in a bit of a different direction then the first 4. Still, I’m with you in falling in love with the characters and their romance. Or at least Takato. Junta still doesn’t do a lot for me, but in his defence he doesn’t get a lot of screen time and we’re almost exclusively seeing Takato’s perspective for the majority of the episodes.

Yeah, that’s true. Actually I would like to watch the same story with Junta’s perspective… Nevertheless, I do have to say that Junta is growing more and more inside of me. It’s true that he still doesn’t seem to be able to stay his hmmm… instrument (?) under his trousers. However, we can see that he is in fact in love with Takato and he cares for him deeply. Something I actually liked to watch was how Takato start falling for him… Although maybe I could pass the cheesy momentos where Takato gets teary eyes without really having a reason for it.

My real issue comes from Junta though. As you said, it is clear he really loves him, which is fantastic and what makes so many of the feel good moments of this show stick. But it is also what makes this kind of creepy at times because Junta really pushes the line on consent in a lot of scenes. And the excuse, that they are in love, doesn’t make that sit any better. Admittedly, Junta does stick just on the side of the line that is kind of okay in a story at least, but putting this into a real world sort of situation, I’d tell Takato as a friend to ditch him.

Dakaichi2a

Yeah, I can understand your perspective. However, at my point of view I think Junta just pushes Takato’s boundaries. It’s true that he is pushing himself a little too much. However, contrary to what tropes we normally deal with, here Takato does want to have the sexual relationship, he just doesn’t seem to be completely comfortable with it. For example, the bus scene. Tanako starts saying no, but it’s not because he does not want it, it’s because he is scared of being caught. However, ends up going with it… I’m not sure if that makes any sense?

It makes sense, and it is one of the reasons why I enjoyed reading the story. Takato isn’t against the relationship and while some sequences look very much like Junta is being forceful, Takato very much goes along with a lot of it, and not just goes along, but encourages in his own way. And as you said, comparing it to the tropes and outright non-consensual situations this genre  normally throws at us, Dakaichi is at least with this main couple attempting to tone it down in the anime and even reading it after the first couple of encounters a similar toning down happened.

Outside of the relationship though, I’m really enjoying seeing Takato doing his job and part of me kind of wishes we had more sequences where he was on set or doing photoshoots and the like. What about you?

Dakaichi4g

That’s actually what I was going to pick next ahah Something that bothers me a little is how Takato’s personality changes completely when he is working and when he is with Junta. I can understand why they decided to go that route (the guy who always seems to be the best ending up being the “uke” in the relationship. However, I think I would prefer to see Tanako more in his own self way that the teary kind of guy because he is going to have sex. It does not make much sense to me.

So, yeah! I agree with you. I would like to see more of this dominant Tanako since it’s his true personality. Moreover, due to both personalities in this relationship it just does not make sense to me to have a top and a bottom. At my point of view, if this kind of relationship happened they would both be more fluid in bed, meaning they would change sides since both seem to have pretty dominant personalities but also love to be embraced and “dominated” by others. What do you think?

I kind of see Takato a bit differently. I think his personality that he has on set is the cultivated ‘fake’ personality he’s had to construct after a lifetime of working in show business. He’s calculated that appearance and attitude to maximise his chances of success at work, but it isn’t really him. I do enjoy seeing that persona, but it really is just another character he’s playing (which is probably why he’s such a good actor). I kind of feel he has decided to throw aside the persona when he’s alone with Junta and while I do think he possibly becomes a little too sappy, it is kind of nice that he can just kind of let his guard down because it must be exhausting to wear that mask all day.

I can understand your point of view. However, when I was talking about the personality was more about his line of thought, instead of the way he presents to others. His way of thinking is normally in the same page wherever he is (since nobody can actually read his thoughts). And from those kind of thoughts I see someone who is calculist and likes to dominate things. But, yes it’s true that he lets himself go when with Junta.

In fact, I think that persona is what makes Junta to seem to push himself so much because Takato’s persona just can’t accept to be with other guy, I mean it would mean problems in his acting career, right?

Dakaichi2c

You’re right in that Takato’s inner monologue really doesn’t change between when he’s at work and when he’s with Junta. That’s an interesting pick up and one I’ll need to consider.

I don’t have much else to say about the first four episodes, other than I really enjoyed them. Is there anything else you want to discuss before we turn our attention to episode 5?

Let me see… *picks notes*…. Nope, I think we covered everything! Since we are going into episode 5, let me start with this question. What do you think about Takato’s character evolution in episode 5? Isn’t a little strange someone who knows the game, is over-cautious and knows that guy is basically a snake to just let his guard down?

Dakaichi5b

Yeah, I have a big issue with Takato’s character in this episode. The start is great where we see how he’s more or less completely accepted his relationship with Junta (loved the scene where he accepted Junta’s key-card), but then as you said, he lets his guard down. Now, I guess you could argue that Takato has gotten blind drunk and done something stupid before (episode 1) except that in that case he’d just lost his title of Most Huggable/Sexy Guy or whatever and then ended up the supporting actor to the guy who took his title. It kind of made sense that he’d go on a bender. Here, it really doesn’t make sense and I know that they just wanted to set up that final scene, but it really did seem totally out of character for Takato. What did you think?

Exactly the same thing as you. In this episode Takato came out as this naive and “weak” character which we already know he isn’t. It’s true that he can’t handle his drink. However, to be honest, first, I just can’t Takato giving help to an actor he doesn’t like so easily. Second, it’s hard for me to believe that he would just go and get drunk near someone who he knows that is one of those actors that play rough and dirty.

Dakaichi5d

As you, I think they just needed some kind of event to get to that final scene. At this point the romance is completely settled and they had to add some kind of problem into it so there is story to continue. However, I hated the execution. I don’t what was the worst, if the character changing completely, or if it seems that they are building a rape scene to start next episode….

We were definitely diving into uncomfortable territory at the end there (not unexpected but I was kind of hoping they’d tone it down given they toned down episode 1 a lot). But yeah, Takato’s character really suffered in this set up and it is unfortunate given I’ve really been enjoying how he’s come across and during most of episode 5 I just wanted to call him an idiot.

That said, I get why he gave the guy advice. They are going to be on stage together and if the lead doesn’t pull his weight and the show goes down in flames that is going to reflect on Takato’s career as well. Self-interest is always a fine enough motivator even if the guy is a complete jerk. One good thing about Ayagi (sorry, checking notes on that name), is that I really appreciate Junta as Takato’s partner after meeting him. Ayagi is just scum.

Dakaichi5e

That’s a way to take out something positive of this episode ahah I hope… I mean, I REALLY hope that in the beginning of the next episode Takato just pushes him away and that’s the end of it. Yes, it will bring problems since Junta will see that hickey and think he was cheated on. But, to be honest, isn’t just cliché?

I think I would probably prefer to see them just acting like a couple more than that… Work, for example, could become an issue or something like that… Or, maybe I just love these guys together so much that I don’t want to see any kind of attacks against their love ahah

Yeah, they definitely hitting the cliches and tropes this episode. I think overall, I’m still really enjoying watching this show and I really would like to see Junta and Takato get a happily ever after, but there’s no getting around the fact that episode 5 is a little bit a problem and it will all come down to how they continue it in episode 6 as to whether it is a serious red flag or just a momentary mis-step for the show.

Yeah, I agree with you. I once read somewhere something like this: It is completely ok to use coincidences and things that are just there to make a character to enter in some distress. However, it is not ok to do the same thing to take them out of that distress. So, we will see! I hope that in the next episode we will see Takato punching Ayagi’s face! I know that he won’t press any kind of charges because he is an actor in Japan and he’s afraid of losing his career and things like that. However, I do hope that Ayagi is not able to do anything to Tanaka when he seems to be passed out from drunkenness… I mean, that’s just… cheap porn story –’

Dakaichi5a

So, I really hope they are able to come back and make me love the series right away in this next episode!

I think that about wraps this chat up then, unless you have any final points you’d like to raise.

Nope, I think this is all eheh it was nice chatting with you 🙂

Thanks Arthifis for joining me on this one. I really enjoyed the chance to discuss Dakaichi and the characters and I think that I have a lot more to think about with Takato’s character now. Looking forward to when we come together again in a few weeks and hopefully we both don’t rage quit the show at episode 6.

For now though, I think we need to go over to your blog to discuss Goblin Slayer.

Thank you for having me and I couldn’t agree more! I was really looking forward for this talk since I had so much in my chest I wanted to share about Dakaichi with you, so these are always a lot of fun eheh

Well, I won’t rage quit! The most it can happen is that it will go to my Horrible Anime quest pile ahahah I look forward for our next talk in few weeks! ^^ And yes, time to come to my place and discuss a little bit about Goblin Slayer eheh

Dakaichi Episode 5 - Takato
My favourite Takato.

Conclusion:

Thanks to everyone who joined us for this conversation. We’d both love to know what you think of Dakaichi so far so be sure to leave us a comment, and remember to check out our chat about Goblin Slayer over on Arthifis’ blog.


Thanks for reading.

Karandi James

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