Nekomonogatari relived Hanekawa’s past and cat history. Personally, I find her as the most underrated character; that’s why it’s nice how Shaft dedicated a short series solely for her. This show may not have the same magical feel that I experienced with Bakemonogatari but it’s evocative how it catwalked us through to the hallmark of Monogatari’s one-of-a-kind perversion—the intricately artsy and titillating poses.
When it comes to posing, Shaft is notoriously known for abusing the human neck anatomy to redefine the art of head-tilts. It’s also amazing how this studio always adds eccentricity to body gestures in order to produce such sophisticated visual kinks.
Take for instance, beneath Araragi and Tsukihi’s fanservicey, incestuous foreplay is the ever-tantalizing pas de deux. Sounds classy, right?
Well, here’s what’s classy about it.
It is broadly renowned that the sign of sexuality in ballet is the heterosexual pas de deux. Through the dramatically elongated bodyline, the man supports, manipulates, and conquers the woman who is visualized as “magically desirable, vulnerable but strong, fragile yet enduring” prize to be won—truly, a perfect metaphor for Araragi’s domination over Tsukihi.
Another common pose that I enjoyed is whenever the body plays with the gravity by putting most of its weight on one leg while resting the other. This creates a relaxing and flowing counter posture, or simply known as contrapposto.
As we had seen with Hanekawa, through contrapposto, she could eroticise a gesture by sensuously revealing her stimulating physique. From her sometimes innocent or sometimes cynical face tracing all the way down to her voluptuous breasts, curvaceous hips, and firm buttocks while placing her weight on one leg and flirty bends the other.
Further, an S-curve—an extension of contrapposto—arguably stands for seductive, statuesque, and sexy posture. Hanekawa’s pose turns even more lewd as she embraced her cat side. Feline creatures are perceived as sexy and wild in popular culture. Having these qualities and a piece of lingerie, Hanekawa uncannily portrays a highly sexualized persona.
This is interesting because if we are going to notice, the more Hanekawa exposes her body, the more she emphasizes her identity and sexuality. Thus, flesh is to femininity. In Black Hanekawa’s case, an over-feminized and revealing body symbolizes liberalism, strength, and power. Whereas in the case of the schoolgirl Hanekawa, a clothed body means conservatism, diffidence, and feebleness. And these could also be read through her poses.
But it’s not just Hanekawa, even Oshino does an S-curve to bring out that cool, masculine swag.
Here’s another fun Monogatari article that I wrote some time ago: