Last week I talked about how casting new VA for anime roles could be considered controversial. This week I wanted to talk about hairstyles in anime.
I think seeing characters change their hairstyle is intriguing because your hairstyle can reflect you as a person, in my opinion. Having characters change their ‘do allows the audience to gauge them from another angle.
For instance, Hibiki (from Anne Happy) used to have moderately long hair as a child. When she accidentally gets her hair trapped and is basically forced to cut off a bit of her hair in order to escape, Hibiki starts to cry because she thinks the other children would think a girl with short hair is weird. However, Ren unhesitatingly trims her own hair, which was even longer than that of Hibiki’s, in order to convince Hibiki that everything will be okay and girls with short hair are fine (damn right).
Present-day Ren still has short hair. She definitely has had time to regrow her hair, but I believe she intentionally keeps her boyish cut in order to show her support for Hibiki.
Not only do some characters trim their hair, but there are also characters who grow out their hair instead. One example would be Atarashi Ako (from Saki: Achiga-Hen), who used to kind of look like a tomboy with her short hair and hoody. By the time she enters high school, however, Ako’s hair is much longer and she looks (and perhaps acts) more lady-like.
Sometimes characters just try out different hairstyles like they were trying new clothes during certain episodes. I also find that refreshing since some characters just look so different, perhaps even better, with different styles of hair. To me, they’re better than the obligatory beach episode! Here comes another Anne Happy picture dump, by the way.
[What do you think? Do you consider characters changing hairstyles to be fascinating? Or am I just making a big deal out of nothing?]