Arakawa Under the Bridge wants to have heart– it wants to you to feel for these apparently unfortunate people who are forced to live under a bridge due to their various social and mental “quirks” that brand them as outsiders. We get inside of Ric’s head and we hear him remark on how they may not be all the strange after all. We see how he becomes more attached to Nino as he gets to know her. We even get little vignettes at the beginning of episodes that let us hear how other characters feel, like how we saw Nino imagine what it’s like to be a whale that wants to get on a rocket and fly into space.
Arakawa wants to ground us somewhat in reality and make us relate to these wacky homeless freaks. Thing is, I don’t want these heartfelt moments. I don’t want to relate to Nino and Star and Mayor and everyone else that lives under the bridge. I like them for the very fact that I can’t relate to them.