Leaty wrote:Honestly, like—for some readers I just don't know how I could have possibly provided "the vibe" that Mai and Iwanako had romantic feelings without making it much more explicit (which would have defeated the point). Like what was I supposed to do, add a kiss? That wasn't what this story was about. Iwanako wasn't supposed to fully understand her feelings here, because she was still in pain over Hisao. I would have thought that the fact that Iwanako seemed much as much (or more) heartbroken over the prospect of losing Mai's friendship as her relationship with Hisao dissolving was telling, but for some people that wasn't, sooo...
Exactly. She had just confessed to Hisao and was at that point still heartbroken over how that turned out. Maybe it's just me, but in that situation I never developped feelings for another person...
And it's all the more vexing for me when you take into account that in Developments, Iwanako literally alludes to being in a relationship. Like, who did people think that could possibly have been? Some random, nameless schmuck? Do either of us work that way?
Actually I did assume it was some random guy, since there were no other named characters available.
Like I don't know if it's sociocultural differences or what. I kind of think that if Mai and Iwanako were both male, nobody would have missed it, but that isn't the point.
Why? Like I said, none of the things you mentioned would be out of place for best buddies. Heck, my best friend a few years back was
gay (we've since drifted apart, and he's been happily married for a few years now but we still talk from time to time) and I recognize a couple of those situations, and neither I not all the people around us ever got any ideas about us... Now that I think about it, it probably was because I was obviously in love (unrequitted) with a girl we both knew - actually just like Iwanako and Hisao in that story. Hmm. I never thought of it this way until you mentioned switching the genders...
My working theory about people missing it is that everybody is looking at MTtB wrong—that they assume the eventual romantic pairing in that story will have to be enabled by some kind of transformative revelation that somehow tilts Iwanako's sexuality from heterosexual into bi/pansexual (or even just a lesbian), and that because Bantamweights doesn't feature such a magical event, it would be impossible that Iwanako could be even unwittingly interested in a girl during the events of the story. And that isn't how sexuality works? If Iwanako is bi/pan in MTtB I quite assure you she's bi/pan in BW, even if she doesn't know it.
Well, at the time of Bantamweights she was in love with Hisao - or at least still getting over it - and there's no indication in her interior monologue that she might be (consciously) bi. In MTtB hetereo relationships are closed to her for medical reasons. That might not make
her bi, but it might make her consider the possibility that she could
dewelar wrote:And, in fact, alludes to it strongly enough that even Hisao gets an inkling of it, fer chrissakes!