I wish I could be a super hero. Or maybe I could be one of those shinigami who battles demons on a midsummer’s night. What about being a sidekick to a squad of magical girls while they duke it out with the forces of darkness. Hell, I could even settle for a mildly attractive goddess falling out of the sky to help me realize my darkest romantic comedy desires. Instead I’m stuck with my normal life.
I’d be willing to trade with Izumiko, who’s constantly reiterating the fact she wants one. Being a girl with spiritual gifts doesn’t seem like such a bad deal, especially since I get to be friends with Mayura (No one knows which way she swings right?). Sadly, transactions with imaginary characters are impossible at the moment, regardless of advancements in science.
But, if you could wouldn’t you do it? Take that one chance to swap places with your favorite character. It would be like one of you’re favorite anime, getting the chance to change your entire life in a single moment. With single step you could slip away from mundane of everyday and into the magic and wonder of a world filled with digivices, cute familiars, and deities willing to get down with mortals.
The attractiveness of this fantasy is what makes it one of the most enduring archetypes in all of anime. A seemingly normal individual gets swept up by happenstance into the realms beyond the threshold of normality. We identify with these characters because they’re living our dreams, journeying through adventures we can only experience vicariously.
So it’s a complete letdown when they start asking for normal life. If only someone invented a bulldozer powerful enough to smash through the fourth wall. We could create some sort of bazaar to auction away our livelihoods, using buzz words like ‘beautiful’ and ‘wonderful’. I expect transactions to look a bit like this:
“Sure I’ll give you my group of high school friends for your alien lover.”
“I can do a Pikachu for a mother not obsessed with my underwear”
“How about this, I’ll give you a normal girlfriend and you can give me your dark past filled with murder and intrigue”
But alas, our worlds can never cross over. The gap is just too vast to cross…
Sometimes though I do understand where Izumiko’s concerns might be coming from. Maybe it’s just not all that it’s cracked up to be. It isn’t something that I could experience to clear away my misconceptions. I’ve only been a bystander after all. There are questions and concerns about an anime life that I just can’t begin to decipher from my perspective. Is combat with zombies and contracts with demons that simple after all? Maybe there is something special in my beautiful wonderful normal life, something that I take for granted.