Saturday, July 21, 2018

Hayate Reflections: What I Don't Like About Nagi

I do not think that Nagi Sanzenin is a perfect character. Far from it, in fact. After all, as much as I am an idealist, I am also a realist – and it is all too obvious that as a person, Nagi is not perfect and that she was never meant to be in the first place.

With that said, because I love her, she is perfect in all her imperfections for me. Still, there is one aspect of her that I find disagreeable – as it was portrayed in the manga and this would be.

Actually, since I’m sure a lot of you out there just don’t like Nagi in general, I’ll let you take a guess. What do you think I don’t like about here? Ready? Go…
Ok, I’m back, so what do you think? Is it…

A.      Because she’s an immature spoiled brat?

Well of course not. This is one of her perfect imperfections (as the song goes). She was indeed quite a spoiled brat at the start of the series and perhaps for a good majority of it… but you know what? For me, this is a part of what makes her character so likeable. Part of her spoiled brat persona was brought on by how sheltered her life had been under Maria’s care and thus, she grew up naïve to a lot of things about the world.

Which brings me to my next point. You see, I don’t believe that she was ever truly immature. The reason that she gives off the impression of being immature is because she had no way of knowing how a lot of things work. For example, she was never made to take any responsibility for her actions. She wouldn’t even be allowed to take public transportation on her own. She had hardly ever been to a shopping mall. Most of all, she had very limited interaction with other kids except others who were pretty much super rich spoiled brats by themselves – even Wataru is no exception, since he was made out to be pretty much of a brat himself at the start of the series.

In short, she had no way of knowing a lot of the things that would have made her seem more mature – but when she assimilated all the knowledge and experiences that had been denied to her after she lost her mansion, she was pretty much just as capable, if not more capable than the average 13 year old girl her age.

So if it’s not about her being a spoiled brat… then is it because…

B.      She’s clingy and possessive of Hayate?

Well yes, even near the finale, that possessiveness was there. Even the wish she made for a world where Hayate loves her could be interpreted to be possessive – but nope, this isn’t what I dislike about her.
You see, I agree with her. I believe that you can’t be totally selfless when it comes to love. While thinking of the other person’s happiness as well, I believe it is also equally important to look out for yourself and your own happiness. What Nagi was showing with her possessiveness of Hayate was strength of character. She was showing us that she wasn’t going to lose him if she could help it because she loves him and she believed for quite some time that he loved her back as well. After all, Hayate was always at fault for inadvertently giving her all the wrong signals. I know that some of you pin the blame on Nagi for misinterpreting these signals, but I think that’s total BS. Nagi already has strong feelings for Hayate, it’s only natural that she would interpret the strong signals Hayate gives her in her favor.
So if it’s not about her possessiveness… could it be because…

C.      She’s a tsundere?

Nope, you’d be dead wrong here. I don’t dislike tsunderes and as a tsundere, Nagi isn’t even all that violent towards Hayate about it. The only parts wherein she’s shown to have violent reactions come mostly from the non-canon parts of season 1 of the anime. So should I hate her for stuff she never did? That’s kinda silly, don’t you think?
Ok, so did you guess anything else? Well… whatever. I’m pretty sure that you’ll never guess what aspect of Nagi I sort of dislike anyway, so I might as well tell you:

It’s because she gave away her cats: Tama and Shiranui. I mean, it felt a bit off considering that her cats had always been a part of her family. (Yes, I know that Tama is a white tiger… he’s a big talking cat, so there!) So I felt that it was a bit disappointing that she didn’t find a way to keep them with her somehow.  It felt a bit wrong for me – especially considering how loyal Tama had always been to her. Also, Tama even speculated that she might leave him behind one day for Hayate… which sort of happened since she did get together with Hayate in the end… but this was two years later. It almost felt like betrayal… almost.

With that said, I don’t really blame Nagi that much for this. In fact, I’d say it’s more about the author, Kenjiro Hata, pandering to the audience. Tama and Shiranui probably weren’t very popular with the readers, which is why their roles gradually disappeared until they just became an afterthought in the ending. It’s not even fully-explained why they ended up in Sakuya and Isumi’s care. It all felt so random. 

Anyway, given how vague their fates were portrayed to be, it’d be easy to speculate a number of positive scenarios as well. Like, maybe Nagi just didn’t have the resources to give her cats the happy life they deserved if they had stayed together with her, so she gave them away to her rich friend whom she knew would take good care of them.

In the end, that’s really the only thing I can find disagreeable about Nagi’s characterization. Of course, I’m sure that you haters out there can enumerate a lot more – so please, go ahead and do share them amongst yourselves – in your own time. Meanwhile, leave me out of it.

This has been Hayate Reflections and this is lordcloudx out.

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Acrylic on Paper... name a brighter smile... you can't!

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