The fact that I'm writing this, can't deny I'm approaching that level of mad. Hah!
Anyways, here goes:
- The relationship between Mitsuru and Kokoro feels forced.
I'm guessing that when people say this, they're referring to Mitsuru as Kokoro was quite obvious she's interested in him. So, I'll focus on Mitsuru. He's a private person, likes to keep to his own, rarely interacts with others in the squad.
In the beach episode, when Kokoro expressed her discomfort in exploring the abandoned town, he told her that she didn't have to go. Futoshi defended her saying she doesn't deserve such harsh words blah blah. And yet, for all Futoshi's white knighting, he went on to explore that mansion with the others and then noticed Kokoro's absence later. Meanwhile, Mr. Mean and Cranky has kept an eye on her and followed Kokoro when she entered that clinic. Had Mitsuru been a few seconds late, that cabinet would have injured her.
See, Mitsuru doesn't speak coddling words, but his actions definitely showed that he cared for Kokoro's safety. To the point that he kept an eye on her instead of exploring the ruins like the others.Then there is the greenhouse. In boys vs. girls, there were plenty of places he could go to - the library, the lake perhaps? Instead, he chose the greenhouse where he knew Kokoro would often be. He told her he goes there to be alone, yeah sure. lol. She went on with that Hanakotoba thing, and while Mitsuru doesn't appear interested, he didn't cut her off either. Given with his abrasive character, he could easily silence Kokoro with a few cutting words, instead, he let her talk about the things she's interested in.
In Partner Shuffle, Mitsuru knew where to find Kokoro, again the greenhouse. It was at this point we first see Kokoro's doll. Not sure how many have seen the implication of Kokoro playing with the doll. She was openly doing it in front of Mitsuru. This could mean two things: First, she has become so comfortable around him that she could just say whatever is on her mind, like asking why adults abandoned having children, and this while playing with a doll as if it's a real child. I mean, she's not embarrassed to be doing something she can't show to Miku. (I'm referring to episode 17 where Kokoro was playing with the doll alone in the abandoned room.) Second, she's slowly conditioning him about babies! hahaha.
But let me focus on the first, Kokoro knew how Mitsuru can be, but with him, she could be herself. This is in part because Mitsuru was relatively nicer to her. I can't imagine Kokoro being this comfortable around Mitsuru if he's a complete jerk towards her.
So does being nicer and wanting to be with her in the greenhouse speak about Mitsuru's attraction to Kokoro? I'd like to say yes. So in his own way, Mitsuru was showing he's attracted to Kokoro. It's subtle, not in your face obvious, but it's there.
After the memory wipe, people often believe that he stayed with Kokoro because of the baby. I'd like to say they're wrong. Mitsuru has been showing concern towards Kokoro before they knew about the pregnancy. But he didn't know how to approach her. Just look at the screencaps below:
Now I'm not here to change people's mind, they can view the relationship as forced as much as they want, but if their reason for feeling that way is speedwatching. Then uh...lol
- The broken promise.
I'm of the opinion that people who can't see beyond Kokoro's broken promise to Futoshi are people who are either were hurt by someone or hasn't experienced a relationship yet. Again, I can't change people's mind, but I can defend Kokoro's actions hah!
Just put yourself in her shoes. Will you want to stay stuck with Futoshi? Haha, seriously though, when she made that promise, she thought partners were permanent. So she easily agreed to the promise.
When Nana presented the option and gave them time to discuss, Futoshi bulldozed the conversation with 'we don't have to discuss, because we promised, ya?' Oh lord. And consider this too, Kokoro didn't know the situation between Ikuno and Mitsuru, yes, they're having issues, but not about Ikuno's plan to switch partners. Kokoro wouldn't dream of disrupting another pair just so she could pursue Mitsuru. Kokoro only saw her opportunity when Ikuno publicly declared her intention, thus setting Mitsuru 'free'. The window to make a decision is really small here. When Nana asked who else wanted to switch, Kokoro didn't have the time to second guess, it's a now or never situation and she went for it. She apologized to Futoshi. And perhaps she thought that was that and happily went her way to play with her doll.
Yes, she has shown no remorse. Why should she? She's happy with her decision to be with Mitsuru. She did not regret requesting that shuffle. She may have realized she'd hurt Futoshi only later on, when the 'euphoria' has worn off. She knew that she'd done him wrong, but hey, why should she stick with Futoshi at the cost of her own desires and dreams? That's just not right. Anyway, anytime that broken promise comes up, I'll just make them read this part instead of repeating myself over and over again hahaha.
However, there's one thing I'll concede:To play the role of the priest for the wedding. That has got to be the most painful thing to be in Futoshi's shoes. I mean, come on, do you really have to rub it in? Yes, he wants Kokoro to be happy, but why subject him to such torture? He hasn't moved on at this point. I don't understand what the writers were thinking.