Takatsuki Ichika is pretty, smart! (Part 1)
Ano Natsu is a deep romantic-comedy detailing one fateful summer when Earth receives a visit from an extraterrestrial. The alien, Takatsuki Ichika, crash lands onto Earth for some reason, but I don’t really give a fuck. I’m just here for that PURE LOVE. And despite the show being fairly cliche, the production team still somehow manages to instill some believability into their characters. Take Ichika for example. She’s an alien, so she probably doesn’t know much in the way of Earthly customs, but she’s a critical thinker—something you might not pick up on your first time watching. Trust me, though. It’s there. She’s very observant of her surroundings and changes her behavior to conform to others’ expectations.
Lemon introduces herself with her arm outstretched, which takes Ichika by surprise. However, she quickly deduces that this must be some introduction ritual for humans and (sort of) emulates Lemon by giving her name and… grabbing onto Lemon’s hand. Obviously, this is supposed to be played for laughs in a typical comedic scenario in which someone, an alien in this case, who knows nothing about human culture fails miserably. Even so, this scene is super DEEP because Ichika actually expresses surprise, carefully considers the situation, and somewhat appropriately responds. Oh, but it doesn’t stop there. She’s a very self-conscious girl, always considering how she did something wrong and how to correct it for later. It all pays off in a later scene.
FUCKING GENIUS. WHOEVER WROTE THIS ANIME IS A GENIUS. THIS ANIME HAS NO PLOT HOLES WHATSOEVER.
But seriously, she formally introduces herself to Kaito, and he gives the appropriate response. In that moment, Kaito feels like he’s felt her hand somewhere before, and Ichika learns how to properly do a handshake. Have you seen another alien do something this ingenious? I mean, really. The alien education system must be very good.
There’s another scene as well in which Ichika learns even more about social mores. This time, it’s about nudity.
Okay, so Ichika opens the door to see Kaito setting out her clothes. He’s a modest faggot, though, so he’s all like, “Close that shit!” Ichika, being the fucking alien genius that she is, takes this to mean that showing her body at certain times or in certain ways is inadmissible. Thus, when Kaito’s sister (I don’t remember her name) and Kanna show up and her towel starts to unravel, she uses Kaito’s face to hide her breasts. Clearly, this has some mixed reactions, but it once again does show that Ichika is well aware of what’s going on around her and tries to change her behavior to fit in.
I’m sure I could even do some deeper analysis as to how this is some parallel to human self-awareness and other pseudo-intellectual bullshit, but I’ll save that for another time. Until then!