Ira Gamagoori, Kill La Kill
Gamagoori is a bit of a paradox. Unbounded by physics, his physical presence is as large as he wants it to be. But for all his imposing enormity, he creates situations for himself in which he becomes vulnerable, from a decidedly kinky fighting uniform that makes him the M to his opponent’s S, to getting himself wrapped around the little finger of tiny, whimsical Mako. I like characters you can’t describe in just one sentence, and Gamagoori fits the bill.
Haru, Free! Eternal Summer
To be honest, Haru isn’t my favorite character in Free! It’s Nagisa, the small-statured blonde prankster. However, I was deeply impressed by his character development this summer. If Rin was the evolving personality of season one, Haru stole the spotlight this time around. While he was cold and indifferent before, this season we saw his emotions in technicolor as he wrestled with losing his friends, his dreams, or both. Haru’s metamorphosis was explosive and changed the dynamic of the entire group.
Ginko, Mushi-shi The Next Passage
If I were a better journalist I would be more like Ginko: somebody who tells stories about people’s lives in a way that is both insightful and healing to subjects and listeners alike. A wanderer, Ginko has a lot of stories he could tell about himself and his travels, but what makes him even more inspiring is that he chooses not to focus on himself. Since he acts as a moral center for the show, Ginko is one of the most reliable narrators we’ve gotten in an anime.
Mikorin, Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-Kun
A shoujo heroine in a man’s body. Mikoshiba, whom Nozaki has affectionately nicknamed Mikorin, wants to come off as a lot tougher than he actually is. When he makes bold statements to girls, he’s the one who ends up blushing! While playing a dating sim, he decides that the hero’s best friend is a better partner than any of the girls. I loved how Mikorin consistently skirted gender roles while remaining comfortable in his own masculinity.
Sommelier, Denki-gai no Honya-san
Strong, silent, and kind of a softie, Sommelier is Denki-gai’s straight man. His matter-of-fact observations and understated personality bring balance to the otherwise loud, emotional cast. Like Gamagoori, he’s the impossibly ginormous half of a size-difference couple. Plus, the fact that he only needs to look at a person to recommend the perfect manga for their tastes makes me want to hang out with him.
This post is the tenth installment of The Twelve Days Of Anime, a blogging series in which anime fans write about shows that inspired or impressed on them this year. For all the posts in this series, visit my table of contents.