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No Best Girls: Closing Thoughts on White Album 2

A short writeup on White Album 2 and stuff.

Disturbing as it may seem, White Album 2 isn’t about picking the “best girl”. Most anime fans will be distraught by that idea. And that it isn’t a “harem” nor one of those “dating sims”.

“But come on, Kastel-chan~, what’s a love triangle without best girls?” said a magical girl who just floated into my room, “That’s the fun of Macross Frontier and other love triangle shows. We all want to root for a Sharon and Rikka. What makes this work different?”

Everyone in the work is a person.

That’s what makes White Album 2 special: We are dealing with people we feel like we know for a long time. Maruto respects these characters so much that they’re now people. With stories to tell. Because we see them grow up, we get to understand them more as human beings. White Album 2 doesn’t feel like you’re reading a book, let alone a porn novel. It’s more akin to hearing someone talk about their lives and thoughts.

And because these characters are people, love triangles become a confusing matter. It complicates matters and often makes you wonder what you will do in that strange situation. The love triangle creates and reinforces each character’s beliefs in their unique definitions of romantic love. We all have different thoughts about love. White Album 2 just has a million characters who expect different things from love:

Love is friendship. Love is dependency. Love is family. Love is deception. Love is going against society. Love is changing yourself for the better. Love is about losing everything for someone else. Love is madness. Love is war. And more.

And these expectations conflict with each other. White Album 2 is a “people” drama. It’s a soap opera, sure, but it’s realistic as hell. There is no “forced drama” or anything of the sort; everything is natural because these characters are people. Their beliefs just collide with each other. And that’s what makes this mess of a love triangle so complicated.

We talk about romances being unrealistic because its characters are stereotypically unrealistic and too idealistic. White Album 2 encourages people to be different. They’re individuals. Everyone in the visual novel thinks for themselves and are not hackneyed cliches as one might think. No, they’re people. And because they have flaws like we all do, you want to be friends with them.

To put it simply, they’re people you want to have a beer with.

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