Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The Weekly W: Watermelon

As you may have noticed, we've covered all of the main W's at least once.  So in celebration of the ridiculous heat this summer and the watermelon I had with dinner, we'll be looking at watermelon in anime.  The obligatory summer episodes of anime often feature watermelon, fireworks, and beaches.  It's going to be sweet!

Watermelon faces : 3
Why do we love beach episodes so much?  Watermelon is pretty neat, but that's not the only reason to love the "obligatory beach episodes".  There are some really neat things that happen in beach episodes, and overarching themes that are pretty important.

The first thing people may notice is that there is a TON of fanservice in most beach episodes.  Even in series with little to no fanservice, the episode is a convenient excuse for shirtless guys and girls in bikinis.  

So we can see that a beach episode could be assumed to just be an easy way to add fanservice to a series, but there are other reasons to have beach episodes.  The episode can serve as a good way to develop relationships between characters.  This is particularly useful if the show takes place in a world much different from our own, since it lends a bit of familiarity to the setting.  Heartfelt discussions and confessions also happen during beach episodes, as the characters feel a sense of connection from spending time with each other.

Beach episodes can also allow characters to enjoy some light-hearted fun.  Smashing watermelons, playing with fireworks, or having a cookout can all be a way for a group to release tension and relax before the PLOT returns.

 Summer Specials can also take place at festivals, which can be an interesting location for a date, for friends to hang out, or for some PLOT to ruin a fun evening out.  This also involves girls dressing up, snacking on food, and playing carnival games.  Fireworks are a popular way to end a night. 

A typical festival scene

Overall summer episodes are often lighthearted and fun.  They allow for relationship development between characters, and offer a convenient opportunity for fanservice.  One of the most interesting things about them is the similarities in episodes from different genres and ages.  Do you have a favorite beach episode?  A favorite summertime activity? Comment below!

Hope Burns Bright

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