I recently realized something; A lot of the Persona Fandom seems to be convinced that Saki Konishi was, in fact, a horrible person and fully deserved the fate she got.
This realization initially shocked me, since I never saw her as such a negative character. After all, The Shadow-Self is something everybody has and hides and is not the “true self” (as it claims), but a fragment of the whole person, just one aspect that doesn’t fully define who they are. In other words, just because Saki’s Shadow was a jerk, it doesn’t mean she was. But somehow, a lot of people seem to think Saki was exactly like her Shadow.
I didn’t understand where this interpretation of her was coming from, so I looked at her short appearance, her post-mortem Shadow-lines in the TV world and mentions of her during the Magician Social Link again. And I started to understand. That doesn’t mean I agree with the sentiment though.
Let me explain why I believe Saki isn’t a nearly as negative character as the Fandom makes her out to be, with a little essay.
More of Saki’s personality was also revealed through Naoki’s social link. From what he’s said, she was quite the prankster and a bit insensitive. Saki may in fact been the female equivalent to Yosuke minus a few things. That aside, there is one thing I would like to point out.
You said that Yosuke may in fact been a “nice guy” before his shadow’s involvement, but I don’t think so. Remember the time Yukiko rejected his advances, twice? He didn’t seem so bothered by it at all. Sure, a bit of his pride might have been hurt but not enough for him to have hostility towards her. If that were the case, he would have never helped saved her and not once did he mention how she rejected him.
The feelings Yosuke had for Saki had always been genuine and it’s not something that would have changed, even if Saki were to reject them. Had Saki placed a little more faith in him, she would have known that. All the gossiping and rumors around Inaba really affected them both in so many ways.
Oh, Naoki’s Social Link… I never got far with it. Hmpf, I finally have to get on with my second playthrough, but yeah, I feel even more confirmed with that.
Hm, you raise a good point about Yosuke being better than that, though. I mean, one also has to take into account that Yukiko was always very popular and that offending her would probably not have been the smartest choice for someone who already is on the bottom of the social hirachy, plus, Yukiko was never as close to him as Saki was. But yeah, if there’s one thing Yosuke never was, it’s a bad person. Even at his worst he will take notice when he’s hurt someone and feel sorry for it.
I fully agree, Yosuke was never going to hate Saki. Even after seeing her Shadow and hearing all this gossip, he still dearly loved her. If she had been able to return those feelings or at least hadn’t been scared of him having them, I’m sure things could have been so different, but, alas…