After getting so down on Futaba last week, I was really glad to see an entire episode dealing with her dilemma and her real desire to tell Yuuri the truth. But further, episode seven of Blue Spring Ride (Ao Haru Ride) continue to showed Futaba’s shortcomings, which are the same we all have.
The show opens as episode six left off, with Kou having stepped off the train to be with Futuba, who has come to terms with her “love” for him. He notices the scent of her hair. She falls even more for him and decides she must tell Yuuri that she, too, loves Kou.
But in between, something interesting happens. Futuba runs into her best friend from middle school. If you remember back in episode one, Futuba compared herself to Yuuri, having been ostracized during middle school as Yuuri was during high school. Futuba’s middle school friend had been her only companion, but eventually abandoned her, too, and here we find out it’s because she thought they both liked the same guy. Futuba makes the connection with Yuuri and Kou and becomes more distressed, wondering what effect all of this will have on their relationships.
What Futuba fails to realize is that her lack of honesty is already having ripple effects. Yuuri is worried about Futuba, and so hidden feelings are having an outward impact. And what if Futuba failed to tell Yuuri about her feelings for Kou until they exploded out into the open? What kind of effect would secrets revealed have then?
The concept of keeping truths hidden is an important one. We often think of lies as those false words we say. But in a world where little white lies are considered an inconvenience or some morality tale rather than a serious concern, it’s no surprise that hiding the truth isn’t also considered lying, even though it’s being dishonest. And like spoke lies, hidden ones can also hurt people.
Yet, Futuba seems to, perhaps, finally decide to come clean by the end of the episode (though I want to note that her “confession,” in and of itself, won’t be wrong in any way). And I love how we see her struggle with this decision all the way through, because it elucidates two of her shortcomings which most of us also share. The first is pride, as Futuba continues to think of how she can best solve the situation without realizing that, as her hidden thoughts begin to impact others, she doesn’t have full control. And second is selfishness, as Futuba continues to place her desires above Yuuri’s and thinks about how revealing truth will impact herself rather than how Yuuri might be hurt.
To be honest, though, I wonder if most of us would think in the same way…and especially so when we were in high school.
Looking at Futuba’s train of thought reminds me of how selfish and prideful I was as an adolescent, and how far I’ve come because of how the gospel has transformed me. And even more significant, I see how much more I have to grow, because really, I think of myself first and only too often. So as annoyed as I’ve become with Futuba, I’m coming to understand that, as with Shinji Ikari, it might be because I see so much humanity (and specifically myself) in her. And if Ao Haru Ride has led me to think upon such things, all the more power to the selfish shoujo heroine lead.