Note: I’m really sorry for only putting this out now. This was actually the first interview I translated for the show, but I decided to put it off until I translated the ones before it. I’m honestly quite disillusioned by the adaptation, which is why I won’t be doing the rest of the interviews anymore. I might find time to squeeze in Episode 3’s interview somewhere, but I won’t make any promises.
This is a special interview with Kayano Ai (Sakura Megu’s voice actress) after the recording session of Gakkou Gurashi episode 6. The original transcript can be found here. Enjoy!
――What kind of character is Yuki from your point of view?
Kayano: When you look at her design, she looks like a really cute animal, but I feel like she’s the most “human” among the cast. Just by looking at her, she screams “anime character”, but on the other hand she also feels the most real. I think anyone who gets cornered in a situation like this would have a survival instinct like Yuki-chan does. Anyone who would want to remain themselves in a situation like that would react the same way Yuki-chan did, is what I think.
――Another thing about Episode 6 is Mii-kun’s entry into the School Life Club. I think the characters’ relationships will start changing from here on.
Kayano: It feels kinda tense… Rii-san’s fist was shaking. Like, “Whoa, Rii-san?!” (laughs) Kurumi-chan seems like the type to pick fights, but here she’s like, “Guys, calm down!”. People who find the characters’ personalities important would have gotten a lot of surprises this episode.
――It feels like a transition into the second half of the show, doesn’t it?
Kayano: Yeah. Rii-san seems like the most calm out of all of them, but… (laughs) This is the kind of show that would make you think deeply about what each character is actually thinking during every scene. I’m sure there were a lot of people who watched this episode and came out of it wanting to rewatch everything from episode 1. They’d realize things like how Mii-kun (who knows that Megu-nee actually isn’t there) was just trying to adjust to the conversation.
――What was the most memorable scene for you in Episode 6?
Kayano: I talked about it earlier, but it’s the part where Rii-san’s fist was shaking. The other one was the scene where Megu-nee locked herself out to protect everyone.
Kayano: Yup! I still can’t believe I was attacked by Kurosaki (Maon)-san right as she sings the ending theme! (Note: Kurosaki Maon is credited as “schoolgirl” in Episode 6) I told her that it was an honor. (laughs) “I was killed by Kurosaki Maon. I regret nothing!”
――(laughs). In the second half, there was a sports festival where Yuki and her friends just had fun. How are you with sports?
Kayano: I suck at sports! (laughs) I couldn’t handle sports-related clubs either. But I did table tennis during grade school.
――Table tennis is actually pretty hard though, isn’t it?
Kayano: That was during the time Fukuhara Ai became popular too. I thought to myself, “My name is Ai too, so maybe I have a talent for table tennis?”. So I tried it out, but I never got better at it. So it was during grade school that I realized that just having the same name isn’t enough.
Kayano: I wonder how the School Life Club girls would do in sports.
――Kurumi used to be in the track club, so she’s probably quite athletic.
Kayano: Yeah. Megu-nee doesn’t seem to be athletic, so I guess that makes me closer to her. I do prefer stuff like yoga where you move slowly though. (laughs)
――Ah, but weren’t you required to participate in sports festivals?
Kayano: Yeah, but I don’t remember what I did during them at all. (laughs) Ah, there was that one time we made a banner to cheer for our class, but we burned it. That’s probably the least we can do if we can’t participate in the event itself.
――I see. (laughs) For the last question, now that we’re finally at the story’s halfway point, what are your expectations for the second half?
Kayano: I didn’t read too much past where the story is right now, so I actually don’t know where the story is heading from here on. Mii-kun’s introduction is different from the manga too. I didn’t want to get too read too much of the story, so I stopped midway.
――So you’ll be surprised once you read the scripts.
Kayano: Yeah. Every time I get shocked, I’d also go “this is too painful, I want to stop” and not want to read the rest of the script. Just a bit (laughs).
Kayano: It’s a show where a lot of bad things happen, but I think Yuki-chan’s cheerfulness gives a sense of hope. So from here on, I’d like to see Yuki-chan’s cheerfulness brighten me up. Just once is fine.
――It feels like a ray of hope, doesn’t it?
Kayano: I’m also hoping that there’ll be more of Yuki-chan and Megu-nee’s conversations. Up until now, they’ve been doing the episode previews, but Megu-nee finally disappeared in episode 6…
――It would be nice if they interacted more.
Kayano: I really don’t know what’s going to happen in the story from here on. I feel like now that Megu-nee’s voice and her figure finally disappeared, her existence itself would vanish from the show. But I’m happy as long as the Megu-nee in Yuki-chan’s memories is also happy.