Anime Review

Sakamoto Desu Ga? Analysis – Making most of what you have

The ideal human

Sakamoto is the ideal human being living his days with style and elegance. He’s handsome, knowledgeable and athletic, a real polymath. Want to get the best of him? Well, best stop your thought there because whatever scheme you’re trying to pull, he’s one step ahead. Hmm, well not ahead per se, just simply that every tragedy that befalls on him turns into a fortune. Pull a chair under him while he’s trying to sit to make him fall? Bad luck, he’s simply going to balance himself in his seating formation with his tremendous core strength. Steal his chair? No problem, he’s found a new seat on the window. All the girls like him, all the boys want to be like him, heck even ghosts want to be with him. Haven’t you heard? He’s sakamoto.

So what’s sakamoto’s deal? Why’s he so good at everything and what is the point in having an ideal and unrelatable main character? Well if you’ve been pay attention, the story isn’t about him, but the characters he encounters – people that are victims of bullying, people that entice bullying, those that lust, those that greed. Those imperfect individuals like you and I, witnessing perfection. What would you do in the face of perfection? Strive to be the best that you could be or cower in jealousy? Because no doubt you will never be as handsome as Sakamoto, quick witted as Sakamoto or even as athletic as Sakamoto. But in an odd way and perfect kind of way, I feel drawn to these minor characters more than Sakamoto because I am not perfect either.

Sakamoto isn’t much a character as he is an entity. He is not the saint that comes to solve all your problems, or even help you solve them. He will simply guide you in the right direction. The perfect example is in the episode where Yoshinobu Kubota is being extorted from the delinquents in his class. He succumbs easily to their pressure and allows them to take his money. He doesn’t want to give his money away but neither does he attempt to defend it taking the easy way out by asking money from his parents. So we come to understand why it’s so easy for Kubota to give his money away. He didn’t work for it, pour his sweat and tears for the money so why should he pour sweat and tears to defend it?

Yoshinobu Kubota asks Sakamoto for help but Sakamoto helps him in the most odd way possible, he helps name earn money so that he can pay the delinquent his money. Yoshinobu doesn’t understand why Sakamoto won’t simply beat these hooligans or why he has to work just to pay the delinquents. But as Kubota gets better at his job, and receives compliments from his manager, he starts to enjoy it. When the paycheck arrives, he feels genuinely proud of his accomplishments and when he has to give his money to the delinquents, he refuses to. He wants to protect his accomplishments. This character growth arc for me personally is more admirable and beautiful than anything Sakamoto does throughout the entire series.

The anime reminds us to not take life too seriously and the episode that best showcases this is episode 6. The first 10 minutes of the episode is Sakamoto walking along a white line along the side of the road as three middle school boys follow him doing the same thing. The leader of the group is jealous of Sakamoto for being able to do things he cannot. As all four of them follow the white line and spend more time together, the three kids start warming up to Sakamoto. It’s a very nostalgic scene that reminded me of times when I was younger. I didn’t want or need a lot of things to be happy, just spending time with my older brother and friends with no care for tomorrow was enough to make me happy.

I rate this anime 9/10

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