Hello! Here is to my next challenge. Get ready for some of this babe~
Favorite Supporting Female Anime Character
This choice would most definitely be altered in later time, but we are talking about the present time. With that in mind, the one lady who I quite fancy for both her looks and a personality most fitting for a supporting character is no other than…
Did you know that her name Natsuki, in Japanese, is just another way (albeit extremely rare since the second Kanji isn’t actually needed) of saying ‘summer‘?
But if we switch gears and mix Chinese into her name’s translation, the second Kanji would mean something along the lines of ‘discipline‘.
That’s where her character becomes tremendously interesting. Just keep this in mind for the next time you head into Hibike! Euphonium as her character arc and even after has everything to do with (the initial lack of) discipline.
If there is anything Hibike! has resonated with me, it’d be that little arc when Kumiko and Natsuki fought for a euphonium spot in the audition.
Hard work does most of the time triumph over talent. Seeing Kumiko achieving her goal via hard work was a major wake up call for Natsuki, and from that time she had changed into an extremely supportive person since she knew her limits—she couldn’t really go as far as others.
This can probably be taken as a hint from her family name, Nakagawa (中川), as the two Kanji letters mean ‘middle’ and ‘river’ respectively. Natsuki was in the middle of the flowing river; she could either keep going or turn back. In relation to the story, Natsuki could really just stop working towards the national competition which is an easier option, or work her ass off and keep going, which she chose to do.
The catch is however, you don’t change horses in the middle of the river, and the fact that she has done exactly so in the auditions…
Watch the show to find out the result!
I believe that a lot of Natsuki’s character has more to do with her differing interactions with each and every single one of the characters in the story than just solely her demeanor. And with that, I think only videos will ever do her justice. Please do watch all of the short clips (they are like 2 minutes max) as I can promise you that she is not your typical, overused trope of senpai.
Natsuki first appeared to anyone as the usual ‘senpai’. And this should be obvious but unless you’re a loudmouth and happy-go-getter, your first impression towards any upperclassman should always be influenced by respect. This is where Natsuki came off as potentially scary as the show perfectly portrayed her in the first few episodes. Kumiko’s interactions and reactions towards Natsuki might as well be one of most, if not the most realistic shit out there, as nobody would want anything to do with a scary senpai who does nothing but complain and slack-off. Even Kumiko called her scary just moments before becoming a witness of personality wonder behind the formality layer.
Natsuki: Contender no more.
Natsuki is seriously a good-sport kind of person. Like, GOOD-sport.
If a competition calls for only one winner, she’d wholeheartedly join in for a fair game. She is not afraid to quickly admit her loss; in fact she doesn’t beat around the bush and just cuts straight to the case, as seen in the video. The same goes with her complaints for anything, be it towards the club or Yuuko’s act of being wishy-washy when it comes to the latter rooting for her beloved senpai.
Her humor is not overwhelmingly great but that is actually what makes her a better character than most. While others are way too busy trying to make their characters ‘funny’, Natsuki on the other hand doesn’t need the help of comedy to make you smile.
Removing all sorts of formalities and we are left with Natsuki the teasing machine. She simply never slows down on ripping Yuuko a new one; it gets a little more comedic (and at the same time erotic) when Kumiko becomes her target, but that is how I like it best.
Anyone with maid fetish here? Because even Natsuki has ‘service’ for you.
This is what dropping Sodium into Water looks like in Hibike!
In case you are really wondering how it looks like in real world.
That is not to say Natsuki has never been on the receiving end of teases. Though, it would be hard to break the tsundere outer shell of hers as she hardly ever accepts being called a good person when deep down, everybody knows that she is.
A Front-line Support
I usually break supporting characters into two main categories: the front and back-line supports.
Back-line supports have little to no contribution towards the main character’s development. They are also usually not the type to heavily interact and even if they do, it would be out of necessity, i.e. parents/homeowners with their ‘welcome home/I’m off!’ and the usual ‘how has your day been?’
Front-line supports on the other hand are vocal and active. They are undeniable source of impact for the main character’s development. And since they have to obviously be more than just greeting robots, the amount of personality and complexity in their designs are usually great. In an anime show, you should be able to tell within two episodes right from the moment of any supporting character getting the spotlight, that they are either yay or nae.
Ever since the audition, Natsuki definitely sat on my front-line type as she is constantly giving Kumiko the little support she needs, in her own style…
Saying O.K. while looking away — Natsuki is showing us some gesture powers in a conversation.
You know what they say about mob mentality?
Natsuki is even willing to put aside her inability to accept Yuuko as her equal, and infuses the saying of ‘monkey see, monkey do‘ into her encouragement for Riko’s love life.
Please tell me that I’m not the only one understanding this without subtitles…
There are some little hints about Natsuki having experience in romantic relationships. I would really love her romantic side-story!
And I totally forgot to mention that Natsuki is seriously a looker! Putting her in my hotties list would be favoring Hibike! just too much.
So yeah, she gets a special post right here~
See you back here tomorrow where I will put on my epic face!