Yep, I’m not. I’m baffled when people assumed that you are what you read. I know I was very vocal on how Takemoto (of Honey & Clover by Umino Chika) echoed my situation back then. Lost, confused and afraid of the unknown—future. We had similar situation but still we weren’t the same. I’ve read several reviews, which mostly are negative reviews of the series I liked, presumed that because I liked this detestable character, I am or or inclined to like RL person (this is stated in a general way btw not personal attack but those who liked it). I find that notion really presumptuous.
I enjoyed a good, well-developed villain. Sometimes I liked the villain better than the protagonist. That being said I do not aspire to be what my favorite character is, generally speaking. When I read I’m well aware of the story being just that—a story. I know there are stories that can transcend and touch lives in more ways. And I do appreciate a good slice of life stories—ones that occasionally even led me to tears. But my appreciation has a limiter; that just because I enjoyed it does not mean I will apply it in my life. As a reader I set discretions; it is why I have books that I want to read and those I clearly will not. The real world is different from fiction world I read & watch. And believe me I read and watched A FREAKING LOT ALREADY!
I remember back when I was 12 years old. I was already watching anime as violent as Rurouni Kenshin. Even my late father commented how violent it was. But I just shrugged and continued watching. I even watched more violent series than Kenshin and I don’t think my moral compass has broken because I read/watched genres like these. As I mentioned I don’t like being judged of what I read & suggests baseless idea of how I’ll behave based on literary piece that I consumed! That’s not me!
Yes, I love to drown myself in stories but just because I liked anti-hero character like Light Yagami of Death Note doesn’t mean I share the same principles. If anything else I opposed it but that doesn’t mean he’s not a great character. He was one of the most interesting character developments I ever had the pleasure of both reading & watching: from stellar, honorable student to someone who was obsessed with his ambitions! I appreciate characters but I don’t aspire to be them! Even good, morally speaking characters—while they inspire—I am still who I am! So I really don’t get these assumptions just because I liked a less unorthodox or ethically gray character.
I believe that as a reader I’m free to read anything I want. That said, we are given an ability to think; you don’t just consume something and simply accept it. I, for one, am not that kind of reader, and while I read I also think of many things (as I mentioned several times before my mind is a hive of unorganized thoughts) I don’t presume things are simple black and white, and neither should you. At the end of the day this is just a piece of fiction & realism of it might be just teeny tiny fraction of what real world represents. I’m firm believer that it is still up to me, the reader.
Now let’s stop holding back authors on writing characters that are unconventional. And stop shaming readers who like these characters. Regardless of how similar I am with some character or how much I adore him/her, I can seriously say I’m not them.
How about you, do you also think that your favorite characters represent your personality? Do you like morally gray characters as well? Share you views with me!