REVIEW: ‘Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki,’ Episode 3 – “When a Girl is your First Friend, Life Seems Like a Date for a While”

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Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki Episode 3

Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki is a slice of life anime produced by Project No. 9. After making improvements with his first attempts at discussion, Tomozaki’s battle to level up continues, as he and Aoi hit the mall to do some more character creation for him. After that, it’s time for him to improve his social graces. Hit the grind for those experience points with Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki Episode 3.

While on a trip to the mall for new clothes, some lunch, and a haircut for Tomozaki, he and Aoi run into one of their classmates Fuka Kikuchi. This young lady surprises both of them by reacting to Tomozaki instead of Aoi. Reading this as a sign of interest, Aoi decides that they have found the target of Tomozaki’s medium goal. The goal of finding a girlfriend for him.

Now, if the above paragraph seems like the synopsis for one of a thousand bad teen movies, it’s a fair reaction. Person A having to win the affection of Person B on a bet/dare/challenge is certainly a well-worn plot concept. As well worn as it is morally questionable. My favorite thing about Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki Episode 3 approach to this story is how Tomozaki dislikes this idea. He speaks about it repeatedly, and in a way that feels surprisingly adamant. Well, at least for Tomozaki.

Happily, Bottom-Tier Character Tomozakidoesnt take this concept to the full manipulative conclusion most stories do. Aoi doesn’t want to make Tomozaki seduce Fuki, or even have her fall in love with him. She simply wants him to do what he needs to in order to create the beginnings of a relationship. As she tells him, “You think she’s cute, so you get involved and find out for sure if you really like her. What’s so weird about that?” Limiting it to this criteria, the goal avoids the icky manipulation themes that teen movies all too often happily wade into.

Before Tomozaki is ready to approach Fuki, Aoi decides he needs to continue to work on his social skills. Level grinding before a boss battle if you will. To this end, he is tasked with chatting with another of his fellow students twice a day for the rest of the week. This is we’re Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki Episode 3 spends the remainder of it’s run time.

Tomozaki’s struggles during this montage of social interactions run the gambit from near-miss to outright disaster. While he’s still getting the hang of proper socializing, he continues to come across as surprisingly genuine with his behavior.  While he fumbles quite a bit, he never has a moment where he says something so dumb it’s unbelievable. As shows often love to have the socially challenged do. This keeps Tomozaki in a place of sympathy, instead of reducing him to a farce.

Along with its integrity toward its main character, Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki Episode 3 continues to deliver its story in a grounded visual way. While some of the character reactions lean a little into the classic anime exaggeration, it never takes it too far or breaks the feeling of the scenes through its use.

When all is said and done, Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki Episode 3 continues to impress me with how well the story balances the genuineness of its characters and the integrity of its story, all while avoiding so many of the oversimplifications or icky moral pitfalls other stories dealing with similar subject matter fall into.

Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki Episode 3 is streaming now on Funimation.

Bottom-Tier Character Tomazaki Episode 3 - “When a Girl is your First Friend, Life Seems Like a Date for a While”
  • 10/10
    Rating - 10/10
10/10

TL;DR

When all is said and done, Bottom-Tier Character Tomozaki Episode 3 continues to impress me with how well the story balances the genuineness of its characters and the integrity of its story, all while avoiding so many of the oversimplifications or icky moral pitfalls other stories dealing with similar subject matter fall into.