Episode 9 of Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie reveals that, like many anime characters, there is much more to the ice queen Kamiya than meets the eye.
The following contains spoilers for Episode 9 of Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie, “Innocence and Clumsiness,” now streaming on Crunchyroll.
Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie recently expanded its roster of characters during the school culture festival mini-arc. The newest addition to the main cast is the blue-haired Kamiya, a highly popular girl at Shikimori’s school who is seemingly perfect — yet Episode 9 reveals she is anything but.
Shikimori herself is put on a pedestal as the ideal student and role model at school, but she has her own minor flaws and inecurities, and just wants to be understood. Episode 9 of the anime helps her and Kamiya grow closer as friends, bonding over this common issue. Neither of them is the queen everyone thinks they are, and that’s okay.
Episode 9 has a lengthy and heart-warming sequence where the school’s two most popular girls, Kamiya and Shikimori, spend some quality time together and open up as true friends. They didn’t get much of a chance to befriend one another during the festival, but now they can reveal their deepest insecurities and fears — and it pays off immensely. This is a chance for Kamiya in particular to explain herself and dispel some illusions that all her classmates have about her. Everyone has a highly flattering view of her, but she would much rather be understood than be treated like a celebrity.
Due to her reputation, good looks and accomplishments, Kamiya has been made into an ice queen of sorts, a beautiful and perfect girl who stands alone and has no need for friendships with the “peasants” around her. The students believe she thinks that other people aren’t good enough for her, but if anything the reverse is true, and Kamiya tells Shikimori and later Nekozaki all about it. Kamiya actually feels terribly lonely and misunderstood, longing for meaningful friendships and connections.
However, she is rather busy and can’t make time for others, such as when she must decline Nekozaki’s offers to hang out. Kamiya’s busy schedule and excellent skills gave rise to her “ice queen” image, and she’s having a tough time breaking free of it. Thus, finally making friends with Shikimori and Nekozaki here makes her happier than any A+ test score or sports victory ever will.
The events of Shikimori’s Not Just a Cutie Episode 9 embody a common theme in rom-com and light drama anime in the current age: seemingly perfect characters who are simply misunderstood. Kamiya is the most recent example of this, and she would identify strongly with a handful of other characters in the same position, many of whom are high school girls themselves. In short, it’s better to form meaningful bonds with a few people than to be idolized by hundreds of strangers, and a flattering reputation means nothing if it means standing at the top all alone. The power of friendship trumps raw ambition every time.
One such character is Komi Shoko of Komi Can’t Communicate fame who, like Kamiya, is put on a pedestal thanks to her good looks, good grades and aloof persona. But in reality, Komi is a perfectly ordinary person who acts like an ice queen not out of arrogance or superiority, but due to her communication disorder. Komi would trade away her entire reputation if it meant making one true friend, and is hardly aware of her immense popularity at all. She may be beautiful on both the outside and inside, but Komi never sees herself that way.
Other recent examples include the petite kuudere Aharen Reina from Aharen-San Is Indecipherable and the big sisterly Hori Kyoko of Horimiya fame. These high school girls each give the totally wrong impression at school, and that makes the former terribly lonely and simply does little good for the latter. Aharen in particular is whisper-quiet and often overlooked, but on the inside she is an imaginative, caring and generous girl who just wants someone to share her heart with. This is why she cherishes her newfound friendship with Raido so much — she is making up for lost time, and now in Episode 9 of Shikimori, so is Kamiya.
Louis Kemner has been a fan of Japanese animation since 1997, when he discovered Pokemon and Dragon Ball Z in elementary school. Now he’s a bigger anime/manga fan than ever, and is ready to share what he knows with readers worldwide. He graduated high school in 2009 and received his Bachelor’s in creative writing from UMKC in 2013, then put his skills to work in 2019 with CBR.com. He’s always looking for a wonderful new anime to watch or manga series to read.