There’s just something about parallels in fiction that make me sit up a little bit straighter and pay more attention.
You can hear parallels in a show’s original soundtrack. Maybe a particular string of notes or chords from the OP finds its way into an instrumental piece during the episode, for instance.
In regards to Yagate Kimi ni Naru, there are several parallel moments in which later instants are intentionally framed very similarly compared to earlier scenes be it character positioning, character thoughts, etc. By doing so, the development and progression of both characters are put on display. Even though the girls are positioned in nearly the same way as before, it’s clear that their mindset is a little different by then.
I’m finding this sort of difficult to explain via mere words, so allow me to default to pretty images instead. Before we get started, however, I would like to credit Mark Nacino for bringing most of these scenes to my attention. He’s a truly avid yuri fan and befriending him has been a pleasure.
In episode 1, Yuu and Nanami were still barely getting to know each other and Yuu, after asking Nanami for advice, ends up rejecting a former classmate over phone in front of Nanami. The classroom is appropriately dyed in rich ochre tones as the sun is setting but also because the topic of love and romance is very present in both girls’ minds given the earlier conversations.
Here, Yuu’s hand is being supported by Nanami, who appears as the reliable senior (before said facade was striped away on multiple levels; for instance, Yuu quickly realizes that Nanami is the one with sweaty palms
and weak knees and heavy arms even though Yuu was the one in a potentially anxiety-inducing situation since she had to turn down someone else).
In episode 13, however, the screen is covered by sapphiric tones which makes sense considering how the girls are having a date at an aquarium. However, in my mind the colour also aptly describes the mood of said date. Even though dates can often be considered to be passionate and romantic in nature, the girls are trying to ignore said connotations (to varying degrees of success) and just enjoy themselves.
By now, it’s clear that Nanami is the one who generally needs more support more compared to Yuu, so it only makes sense that Yuu is the one supporting Nanami in this similar yet different scene as seen in the positioning of their hands.
Along a similar vein, episode 1 and episode 9 contained parallel scenes. Koyomi, being the keen and sharp writer, seems to notice Yuu whenever Yuu is preoccupied.
In the 1st episode, Yuu is at a bit of loss and is thinking about how to gently reject the aforementioned classmate when Koyomi calls out to her.
In the 9th episode, Yuu is suddenly acutely aware of just how dazzling Nanami is after experiencing a flood of emotions while watching her run. Koyomi again calls out to Yuu, but once again Yuu keeps her friends at a distance while claiming everything is alright even while she tries to tackle her romantic issues alone as before.
Finally, there are the moments in episode 6 and episode 13 to consider (13 really drives home the parallels).
During episode 6, Yuu tries to convince Nanami that she doesn’t have to do the play and that others would accept her even if she didn’t try to be like her dead older sister. Nanami, however, replies that she has to be like her older sister. After a brief moment of tension, the two make up while standing face-to-face.
During episode 13, Yuu decides that they could act out some of their lines in the play since no one else is around. Just like how many of later scenes parallel earlier scenes, the main character in the play mirrors Nanami, and the atmosphere gets slightly prickly as Nanami, acting as the amnesiac main character, affirms that she has to imitate at least one of the persona familiar to others.
However, the tension is short-lived as the girls are just trying out roles that are quickly discarded when the Penguin Parade they were waiting for starts.
There are probably a bunch more parallels, but I’ll leave it at this.
Thank you for reading.