By TheBigN(oodly Appendage)
In life, there’s always an opportunity to get worked up, necessary or otherwise, about something, and so it often seems to be the case with Yuno. But as is most cases with our X’d protagonist, it’s understandable in this episode, as she begins her time at Yamabuki High School, a new situation, with new courses, new teachers and new students for starters. Though they might seem innocuous, we are all caught unawares when faced with something that we haven’t met before, especially when coupled with whatever life decides to throw at you when you’re not paying attention. It can be petrifying, bewildering, doubt-inducing, and very persuasive in reversing course back into what you’re used to, even if you’re not fine with what’s there, just because it’s what you know. But regardless of how we feel about them, the only way to progress and to get to progress when confronted with these new experiences is to keep pushing onward, no matter how long it takes to get there. So it’s good to see Yuno begin to tackle this new challenge of high school life, even with some butterflies flying around in her stomach, because everybody’s changing, and we never feel the same. :3
Unlink the first episode of x365, the nervousness Yuno demonstrates is more of anticipation than of self-doubt, more curiosity than fear, and so on. Given what I know and what I’d like to think I’ve had experience with, the main change in tone is due to familiarity. It is definitely a big jump for Yuno away from her normal comfort zone by living by herself and going to a new school with little to no experience on how to go about it. But it isn’t like she’s just randomly thrown into a creek with no paddle, since she’s starting on this new journey with a friend in tow in Miyako. Yuno admits after her first impression of Yoshinoya that “Just being close to someone you know makes the class more reassuring.” It becomes easier and quicker for her comfort zone to expand to the high school because she has someone she knows that’s going through the same experience, and suddenly the unknown isn’t quite as scary anymore (That being said, I wonder what would have happened if Yuno was unable to stop Miyako from volunteering her to be a nude model, which would be unknown territory for her and for the audience. At least the ones who keep away from illicit doujins and such).
Yet it’s still stepping out into the world of unfamiliarity, and as such, we tend to do our best to prepare for what happens, which often tends to be either more than we can handle or more than we needed to worry about. For Yuno, it’s the latter, showing that she’s a little too oversensitive for the day at various times during the episode; it should tip someone off when the school’s opening ceremony isn’t important enough to be mandatory for second and third year students. A fun example was her fretting about the necessary inventory and stressing out some when given mixed advice that’s useful and relevant in one instance (though for Miyako more than Yuno; tissue anyone?) and useful, but not quite so relevant in another one (a red Swingline, anyone?). And I think the more important example comes after the end of the day.
Yuno falling asleep on her feet into Miyako just a couple of yards of home sweet home indicated several things. First, that it was chronologically the first example of the fact that Yuno can pretty much sleep anywhere. Since I’m apparently also developing this condition, I can sympathize with her, but even I haven’t gotten that far yet. Second, it shows how much Yuno focused on this first day, showing both how excited she was about the day, letting Miyako know that she hadn’t slept much the night before due to that, and how much she carried that ever-present nervousness applied to being in a new situation. It seemed as if once she stepped out of Yamabuki High School, a weight was lifted off her shoulders, and since at that moment her body didn’t need to worry about the burden anymore, it decided to rest itself. Finally, it indicates how much trust that Yuno seems to unconsciously have for Miyako to be willing not to keep it together just before arriving at home. It also says something for Miyako being agreeable to carry Yuno back to the apartments, up the stairs and into her room. Even though it hasn’t been that long since they’ve met, you can see a comfortable, close and more trustful bond between them than most people have in life.
And in many ways, Yuno is so damn lucky. Lucky to have a carefree friend in Miyako who is willing to help her out and cheer her up without asking anything (important) in return. Lucky to have a doting friend in Sae who is willing to calm her down and keep her composed whenever she’s prone to pressuring herself too much, especially in situations where she doesn’t need to. Lucky to have a supporting friend in Hiro who allows her to take a load off her mind by putting it into her stomach, among other things. And lucky to have a group of people that care about her well being and happiness as she takes small steps forward in life, expanding her comfort zone bit by bit.
In other news, Misato-sempai is awesome, and we need more of her impishness in this world (go go Ami Koshimizu!). And I’m still mad that they didn’t include Drunk Yuno in this episode. Bastards.
Next Episode: Fly Like An Eagle