Pin the Blame: School Days

What is eternity doing tonight? has become Mega Megane Moé. For the latest posts, please change your links accordingly.
a.k.a. Whose Fault is It Anyway?

Makoto Itou has accumulated more than a fair share of heat for his actions so far through the first half of the soap-opera-slash-harem-slash-love-triangle anime School Days, and by heat I mean rampant flaming. Makoto deserves to die. Makoto deserves a swift kick (or two) to the crotch. Makoto is the worst harem/male lead ever.

Now, having seen up through the raws of episode 6, it's a nearly impossible task to argue that Makoto is a just person, or a good guy, the typical type of harem lead that one would see in any other anime.

What can be argued, though, is that Makoto is more than a slight victim of circumstances. To put it one way, Makoto is not the only person in the wrong here. That's right; the girls are at fault too.

It's really wrong to focus all the attention on Makoto just because he is the center of the anime; we pull up on the earth as much as the earth pulls us down. For each action Makoto makes, it causes - or is caused by - an equal action.

Yeah, perhaps that is just overdramatized writing, a bit of Shioriism, but it can be shown that School Days is not the result of one messed up, horny guy, but many faulty characters.

Not at all, of course, that that is a bad thing, entertainment-wise.

Kotonoha's weakness, oddly enough, is what attracts the most viewers to her. No, not her breasts - although they do play a factor in a lot of things, including initially attracting Makoto - but rather her shyness. She simply is just not able to make a stand for herself until it's too late. School Days has proven to be one of the darker school world, perhaps more representative of the peer-pressure, maybe conformist environment of some schools. Kotonoha frequently allows herself to get pushed around - by her classmates, even by Makoto himself.

To be honest a large part of this could be avoided perhaps, if Kotonoha was a bit of a stronger person - if she didn't back down and run away every time Makoto did something wrong. In a sense, perhaps it's the wrong thing to say that 'Kotonoha should have kept Makoto more in line', but it's true. Maybe it's not her job to do so, but both of them do need steps towards compromise with their equally somewhat extreme personalities. Kotonoha needs guts. Makoto needs more blood to his brain and less to his wang.

Sekai, as you might surmise, can be attributed an equal amount of guilt. Simply put, there's a line between friendly and meddlesome and you can guess what side she's on. Perhaps she had good intentions in setting Makoto and Kotonoha up somewhere along the line, but in the end, just like Makoto, her own lust took over, for one, in the kiss at the end of episode 1, or the 'special training'. Makoto and Sekai are both somewhat the same in that they stepped all over Kotonoha on their way to each other, and she took it. Perhaps if Makoto and Sekai had started together it would have ended better, but I think the situation could have worked very well in reverse, because Kotonoha is the girl with the omg boobs that Sekai don't got.

Sekai, although seeming to have the best intentions, doesn't seem to be much more forceful with them, to be honest, than Kotonoha. Sure, she says no. Sure, she says she shouldn't be with Kotonoha. But does she mean it? Or is it the equivalent of girls screaming "No! Stop!" when they're already naked in bed with the guy? Perhaps it can't be blamed that Sekai didn't stop Makoto; of course it's going to be hard stopping someone you like from liking you.

And still, somehow, the word never got to Kotonoha that Makoto switched alignments until it's too late.

To be honest, the blame-fest could even extend to the classmates. The classmates who constantly hounded Kotonoha (who is screaming 'snap me!' at this point). Setsuna, who looks like she could almost be the 'quiet girl voice of reason', may have done more in unlocking Sekai's real feelings for Makoto by bugging her about it every episode or so.

Perhaps it was the right thing to do for a friend. But if she knew Makoto was going out with Kotonoha, maybe some doors should have remained closed.

What about Taisuke? He's the annoying Harem Runner-Up Pervert. So away with him as well.

Otome was revealed in episode 6 to have something for Makoto as well. This is what we call 'getting messy.'

In the end, it's not all Makoto's fault. Obviously, a lot of this could be fixed if Makoto was not a hormone-laced, impulsive teenager, but it'd be wrong to ostracize only him. Everyone in School Days does have at least a small flaw, and that's what makes the anime a good watch. There are no perfect characters, no Childhood Friends, no Overly Nice Harem Leads. It's, in a sense, more real than most anime. Even though I cannot personally attest for it, being living the geeky school life, it feels like School Days could be something that could almost actually happen.

The endings, may be an exception to that rule; but we'll burn that bridge when we get there.



Yeah, I agree. They're all at fault. I don't think any of them have and bad intentions, they're just all realy stupid with handling their feelings... xD Which is what being human is all about~!

In my opinion, Makoto would've been a key part (a BIG part) in stopping all those mistakes from happening. I agree that it isn't entirely his fault however.

It's hard to believe a guy would drive himself into these kinds of situations in real life though, but meh I guess it's possible.