so I've been thinking
I always wondered why tsukishima caught so much flack for not being energetic or not putting in extra efforts. He did what he was supposed to do and he did it well. It didn’t seem fair especially when there’s characters like kunimi and kenma and taichi who aren’t asked to change. But now that I’ve thought about it, there are a lot of factors in play. Up until now, I’ve thought of it as “tsukishima was wrong”. He was wrong in not practicing more or “showing his passion”. That’s what I thought the message was, and I think a lot of people think of it like that too. But the fact of the matter is, it’s not a simple matter of everyone else being “right” and tsukishima being “wrong”. There was nothing wrong with him not being passionate otherwise the way people treat kunimi and kenma wouldn’t make much sense. Tsukishima wasn’t doing anything inherently wrong by being uninspired and unmotivated. It would have been wrong if he didn’t fulfill his role, but that wasn’t the case. Even while complaining about him, ukai couldn’t say that tsukishima didn’t fulfill his responsibilities. Because it’d have been untrue. Tsukishima showed up at practice on time and stayed the duration, he learned to read block, he learned to recieve better, he learned the synchronized attack, and he even balanced his schoolwork with his extracurriculars perfectly. If it were just a matter of responsibility then tsukishima met his better than hinata or kageyama. So what was the problem?
Well part of it was simply that his environment required him to have more enthusiasm than he was showing. Kenma is in nekoma, kunimi’s in seijoh, kawanishi is in shiratorizawa. Their teams permit and can easily accomodate their lackluster attitudes. But karasuno can’t. That’s not the kind of team they are. Their playstyle and goals can’t accomodate that. And, with a few exceptions, the players have got to try and accomodate their teams as much as the teams accomodate them. If he were someone like hinata or kyoutani or bokuto or ushijima things may have been different. Those are the chracters that recklessly charge forward without worrying what kind of environment their teams have. They reshape the team. People work around them. And maybe that’s a good thing and maybe it’s not, either way it’s a thing. But tsukishima is nothing like them. He HAD to learn to accomodate the team a bit, his team needed him to have a different attitude. If he went to aoba jousai, oikawa might have found some way to fit him in without making him change. If he were in nekoma, he might have had to change but it probably would have been a slower burn. If he went to shiratorizawa then it wouldn’t have mattered as long as he could play and play well. But he went to karasuno, they needed something else from him. And luckily, it wasn’t something he didn’t already have.
And that’s probably the second factor. It’s not like tsukishima didn’t have enthusiasm or that he truly didn’t care, he was just afraid to show it. Kunimi’s lackluster attitude and play style is something he’s turned into an advantage. Kenma’s is both an advantage and just a fact of life, that’s just the way he is. Point is, none of the other unenthusiastic players were unsatisfied with what they were giving. They were playing in a way that made them happy, that achieved their goals. But tsukishima was different. He was competitive. He wanted to win. And having such a competitive and victory-obsessed team aggravated that even more. The problem was that he was scared of what might happen. He wasn’t playing in a way that achieved his goals, he was too afraid to set goals in the first place. He was almost afraid the expectations would kill him. He didn’t lack drive, he was just burying it. And that’s a lot different from naturally being like that. Forget the team, if it were just that the team needed him to be different I’d have said that he should have just bummed off and found another club. There is no reason for someone to change who they are against their will for a sports club. But he had to change for himself too and that makes all the difference. What he was doing, the burying his emotions and hiding from something he loved out of fear and anxiety, it wasn’t healthy. He had to change that sooner or later.
Anyways that’s what I think about it. I’m super proud and happy about the interest tsukishima’s showing now.