"Since I'm Not Popular, I'll Change My Image a Bit” (モテないし、ちょっとイメチェンするわ Motenai shi, Chotto Imechen suru Wa?) is the first episode of the anime series WataMote. The episode was written by Takao Yoshioka and directed by Shin Ounuma, who is also the series director. It was broadcast in Japan on July 8, 2013.
A man narrates, "Here we have a particular girl," as the scene pans from the night sky to outside the Kuroki Residence. Inside, lit only by her computer, Tomoko surfs websites about for the definition of a "mojo" (喪女もじょ) or "an unpopular girl" a month before entering high school. She reads the definition with increasing depression as she appears to meet the criteria.
Defiant, she rejects the identity. She thinks she is popular because in three years of middle school a "guys spoke to me six times!" She recalls a guy asking her what their next class is, a guy picked up her eraser for her when she dropped it, and a guy moved closer to her so she they could share a textbook. In each case, she could only talk in a very quiet stammer. Nevertheless, Tomoko heralds these as achievements as she vows, starting the next month, she will enter high school, where, in a dating sims montage she will have guys wooing her without her even trying. Indeed, she notes has dated "hundreds" of boys in such games.
Time passes two months to May to find Tomoko eating lunch alone while reading a book. She wonders what has gone wrong as the scene shifts to the opening titles. The scene resumes afterwards with Tomoko inwardly trying to reassure herself that she has plenty of time to "make some guy friends." Nevertheless, as she hears other girls talking with guys she inwardly freaks. She rationalizes that the girls must be "boy crazy bitches" and the boys "scumbags" and she is better off being alone as she vainly stares into her book.
The scene focuses on the sky outside her class window to show the quick passage to late afternoon. The unnamed Okada and Nemoto say goodbye to the Homeroom Teacher. As the two discuss studying, Tomoko notes that midterms are soon as she descends into a fantasy of doing well and becoming popular. She emerges from her fantasy to find herself alone in the classroom.
She slowly walks to the shoe lockers to encounter Okada, Nemoto, and the two unnamed boys Kiyota and Suzuki discussing plans to study together at a restaurant. As Tomoko passes, she wonders if terrorists could occupy the school. She then wonders if the aliens from Gantz could attack, or Shimada from Parasyte show up. She passes a male teacher at the school entrance. When he teachers tells her to take care going home, Tomoko can only stammer in a whisper then bow and run away.
At home, she collapses into her bed. She wonders how long it has been since anyone has talked to her at school. Her mother calls to her to ask if she wants anything from her shopping. Alone, Tomoko makes some coffee and notes that even a recluse can talk to her mother. She plays video games that require her to rub a guy's back. The character has erotic reactions but the play does not satisfy Tomoko and she throws the console across the room.
After that, she tries to dress like cute students, but fails to the point she becomes sick. She then asks the eternal anime question: "Am I cute?" Assessing herself as small in both stature and in chest, she figures she should at least gain points with pedophiles. Looking into her eyes, with her rings from stress, she rationalizes if she can fix them she can "live my fun high school life!"
She runs to borrow her father's glasses and quickly realizes that they obscure the her dark circles. She then furiously searches for ways to increase her "cute" in a montage homage to Death Note. Her exhausted brother Tomoki returns home. Tomoko decides to greet her with her "new cute look" which shocks him.
After the advertising break, Tomoko changes back into her casual clothes and decides to focus on her conversational skills. She sits in her brother's room and tries to engage him in conversation despite his demands she leave. She finally turns to him, darkly, and announces she will kill herself. Tomoki tells her to wait and explains that she just got on his nerves a bit. Tomoko continues as the room dissolves into dark swirling clouds, that she feels the difficulty of her life increased and she is in "hard mode now." Her future will be "nightmare mode" so she might as well go to the ending immediately.
Tomoki apologizes and reminds her that she wanted something from him. Tomoko simply asks that he talk with her. She begs for him to talk to her for one hour a day as a way for her to rehabilitate her conversational skills. Inwardly, Tomoki refuses the concept; he asks why she does not simply talk with her friends. He cannot believe she does not have a single friend. She reminds him that he has been star soccer player then wanders into a fantasy that every time he scores a goal, he gets to have a "quickie" with the female manager, a concept that would certainly make soccer a more popular sport.
As he grits his teeth and inwardly wishes she was his brother so he could punch her in the face, Tomoki agrees to talk with her. He asks for how long he must have conversations with her, and Tomoko responds only until she gets a boyfriend. "So you're basically sentencing me to life in prison?" concludes Tomoki. Tomoko thinks only a month; Tomoki inwardly finds this surprisingly positive. When he asks her what she wants to talk about, she asks him the same eternal anime question: "Am I cute?" He responds, "normal," which only generates her questioning what level of "cute" that represents. As she blathers on, he inwardly cries.
The scene shifts to Tomoko retrieving her shoes from her locker. Walking some distance away, Okada and Nemoto celebrate the end of their exams with a half-day off to enjoy. Tomoko plans to surf the net and play video games. As she leaves the building, Kiyota and Suzuki catch up to Okada and Nemoto to suggest that they go to karaoke. Inwardly, Tomoko explodes in jealousy. As she walks away, she imagines the four enjoying with another unnamed girl enjoying karaoke. She imagines they all engage in various perversions in the room as she passes the teacher at the entrance. This time she manages to stammer an intelligible "goodbye" (sayonara) before running away.
Running, bathed in lens flare, with the music picking up its tempo, Tomoko is delighted with her achievement: managing to reply to the teacher. She decides to stop off at a store to buy something sweet as a reward as well as something for her brother for his help. At this store, the handsome shopman asks her if she needs a spoon and she is overcome but can manage a simple "yes" and "thank you."
Delighted that she talked to "a hot guy," she decides to continue with her luck. She stops by a book shop called Book·On where she can read manga alone without attracting attention. After reading many, decides to try WcDonald's. After stammering her order to the counter girl, she finds a quiet table upstairs. With one bite, she becomes overwhelmed with how good the hamburger is: "I thought these things were just for children and idiots!"
After eating, Tomoko feels she has enjoyed herself alone, but also feels it would be better with friends or even a guy. Almost on cue, Okada, Nemoto, Kiyota, and Suzuki arrive after karaoke. Panicking, Tomoko inwardly suspects they will notice her as the girl who is "always off by herself." She visualizes her situation like a video game and concludes she must escape to the bathroom. There, she rearranges her clothes, puts up her hair, and sucks in her cheeks like she tried the night previously to look cute in the hope of disguising her appearance. Only Kiyota notices her school uniform but does not recognize her. Tomoko successfully walks past her classmates unnoticed only to run directly into her brother and his two unnamed friends on the stairs. Her brother acts like she is stranger while inwardly wonder what "this idiot" is doing. As they pass, Tomoko hears one of his friends remark how ugly she is.
In the early evening, Tomoko sits on a swing in her neighborhood "OX Park." A somewhat embarrassed Tomoki finds her and coaxes her to leave the park and go home.
After the Ending Theme, a more cartoony Tomoko and Tomoki preview the next episode
- Tomoko Kuroki
- Tomoki Kuroki
- Mrs. Kuroki
- Homeroom Teacher
- Okada (unnamed)
- Nemoto (unnamed)
- Kiyota (unnamed)
- Suzuki (unnamed)
- Middle school student
- “Cute Guy” at Mart 7/24
- Fast food clerk
- Tomoki's two friends (unnamed)
- This episode introduces Tomoko, Tomoki, and their mother.
- This episode also introduces the unnamed characters .
- Tomoki has the same dark rings around his eyes like his sister while their mother does not.
- Dating sim
- Ouran High School Host Club
- Death Note
- Gaagle is an obvious reference to a popular search engine.
- WcDonalds is also obvious.
- Book·On the logo is based on that of this store chain.
- Tomoko discovers the meaning of "mojo" (喪女もじょ).
- The kanji 喪女 is spray painted on the brick wall behind Tomoko in the opening titles.
- Tomoki does show grudging concern for his sister.
- "Girls who form their own groups like that are just boy-crazy idiots anyway! Only scumbag boys would hang around bitches like them!" – Tomoko
- "Wearing makeup and short skirts to flirt with boys is for sluts. Go ahead and live out your clichéd adolescence with your fellow scum." – Tomoko
- "I'm coming soon!" – Naked Male Character, Tomoko's video game
- "Whoa! Freakin' ugly!" – Tomoki appreciating his sister's new Cute Look
- "Every time the forward scores a goal in a soccer game, he gets to have a quickie with the female manager, right?" – Tomoko
- "Shut up, you pansies and bimbos." – Tomoko
|Anime Episodes||01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | OVA|
|Manga Volumes||01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16|
|TomoMote Chapters||01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28|