Point of View is not necessarily easy to convey in anime, nor film in general. FLAG did a great job of it by putting you directly inside of a camera lens for the entire show, but let’s avoid the obvious choice here. The biggest ways that anime locks you into a characters mind is through asides and background imagery. These elements are used heavily in manga and can be carried over visually and audibly with ease to another two-dimensional visual medium, proving once again where animation can open up the extra possibilities that live-action film wishes it were capable of.
PoV is a great thing to have because it gets us into a character’s head in a quick and effective matter. The sooner we understand a character, the easier a time we’ll have connecting with them and coming to enjoy them. Nyan Koi is not the pinnacle of originality, and yet it exhibits an alluring charm, possibly due being told from the main character’s point of view, and because said character is likable.
Nyan Koi actually begins inside of Junpei’s head as he imagines a midday rendevous with the woman who’s been setting his heart aflame. She pushes him to the ground, and just as things get steamy, a piece of her hair inexplicably goes up Junpei’s nose. (And here I’m thinking she’s going to reveal that she’s a cat person or something!) This says a few things about Junpei immediately: 1. He has no confidence in his luck, 2. He is hopelessly sexually frustrated, and 3. He is very easily embarrassed. These instantly notable characteristics just about define his personality.
That and he bloody hates cats. Perhaps it’s merely his allergies defining his judgment, but I’d say that Junpei probably just wouldn’t have been a cat guy to begin with. I can see him as much more of a dog guy, but I digress. Junpei has another nightmare, and now he’s become a cat. I think we can safely assume that Junpei isn’t going to have any good dreams in this show. Nothing but freaky David Croenberg-esque nightmares.
We don’t only get into his head through nightmares, though. As the narrator, Junpei feels free to put his state of mind all over the screen. We learn that Junpei thinks of everything in a very coordinated and logical sense. Can – check, trash bin – check, proper action – kick. And again when the cats are advancing on him, the situation takes the guise of a battle formation, and Junpei must Red Alert his way out of the cluster-fuck. I greatly enjoyed the imagery in both of these scenes, which lends a lot to why I found this episode quite entertaining.
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