Happy (belated) birthday, Rina Tennoji!
I’m so glad that you’ve found many efficient ways of communicating your feelings to others!
When you were first revealed in the Perfect Dream Project promos as one of the new faces accompanying the N girls that won the poll, I knew you’d be a favorite of mine from your design alone. I love the cyber aesthetic, and you really stood out from the crowd with your Auto Emoticonverter Rina-chan Board. I decided to keep an eye on you as the project moved along.
Later, when ALL STARS came into the picture, I loved seeing you develop as a character. You were initially a shy and introverted girl who’d hide behind your Rina-Chan Board often. You’d trail behind your best friend, Ai Miyashita – the first person that you connected with at Nijigasaki High – and she often spoke for you when others misinterpreted the feelings that you were trying to convey. She helped create what would become your primary method of communicating with others, the Rina-chan Board. While the Rina-chan Board seemed to be effective in getting your emotions across, you were constantly seeking ways to improve your connection with others.
Eventually, the world of school idols unfolded before your eyes, and you used the power of song and dance to tell the world how you were feeling. Once you were feeling confident enough, you revealed your face to the ALL STARS protagonist/Yu, and, soon enough, you were even able to give high-octane performances without relying on the board! You later went on to reach out to others that may have been feeling the way that you did by utilizing the internet, letting others know that they weren’t alone and showing them that they could become more confident as well.
In the anime adaptation, you retained your main traits, but you were characterized a bit differently, as you were shown without your board from the get-go. You still went through the same issue of worrying how others would perceive you, but instead of using your board as a crutch before gaining confidence to go on stage without it, you gained confidence to use the board on stage when you felt that your natural face wasn’t enough to show how you were feeling.
Your story really resonated with me as someone that suffers from social anxiety. While I can convey my facial expressions just fine, I do have trouble expressing my feelings to others at times. When I do express how I feel, my feelings can often be misconstrued. I also have trouble making new connections with others. I’m glad that characters like you (and the colorful Love Live! cast as a whole) exist to give the world a sense of optimism about the things that we can achieve when we’re being the best versions of us that we can be – to light up the world when things seem desolate.
What makes you awesome:
• Your affinity for technology. I love that you have a love for video games, robotic pets, and the way that things operate. It can lead to some interesting developments and scenarios, such as the creation of your electronic Rina-chan Board and the creation of a haunted house.
• Your chiptune-esque solos/your voice. Your songs have a very distinct sound, and they’re very earwormy. (Teletelpathy was stuck in my head for weeks after I first heard it, and Tsunagaru Connect still gets stuck in my head.) Your voice is very much suited for them; it complements them perfectly.
• Your Rina-chan Board. I’ve seen people expressing their hate for the board, saying that it’s ugly and that you look so much better without it. Imagine having such terrible taste. I love the range of expressions that your electronic board has, and I love seeing your artistic skills showcased with your hand-drawn ones! Honestly, if others don’t love you with the board, they don’t deserve you without it. Mind you, you do look adorable without the board, and I love how you going without it represents your growth as a character. It’s just that the board is such a unique feature and a huge part of your character. Nowadays, you’re seen without it a lot in official art (although it does still pop up), and I miss it.
• Your cat-motif. Aside from the fact that the cat accents on your clothes look really cool, many cat-lovers have proclaimed to be introverts, so cats suit you. Cats themselves have a playful side – much like you when you’re showing off your oft overlooked witty or mischievous sides.
• Your pink hair. Don’t really have an explanation other than the fact that it’s awesome.
You are more than worthy of being one of my best girls! Never stop being the always-emoting, tech-savvy idol that you are! Rina-chan Board: Wai!