Oh my flying spaghetti monster!! What is with all these super feelsy episodes lately? Sarazanmai left enough of an impact with the friendship feels, and then Bungou Stray Dogs slapped me with all those parental love feels! And now, we have Fruits Basket (2019) episode 7, with the beauitful, heartbreaking story of Hatori and Kana! So yeah, I cried. Anyway, I won’t be giving a structured episode review, but just my thoughts and impressions, so here goes!
Episode 6, “Spring Comes,” made two things very clear to me. First of all, I remember virtually nothing from the 2001 version– I couldn’t remember what animal Hatori was, and I still don’t know the real “curse” of the Souma family. I didn’t really recall Hatori’s story at all. Chances are I can’t remember the original because even though I only watched it about a year ago, I was high/ baked/ stoned as all hell. Yep. Glad to be sober now. Anyway, second, this episode made it clear to me that Hatori is an amazing character and a muuuch better person than me.
I was deeply moved by the story of Hatori and Kana, and I can empathize. Once he allowed himself to open up, he felt indescribable happiness with the person he loved. Long story short, Akito ruined everything for them. Kana was driven mad and Hatori erased her memories to free her from mental and emotional anguish. Also, when Akito was throwing a fit because he didn’t want Kana and Hatori to get married, he pushed Hatori into a mirror. The glass injured him and left him mostly blind in his left eye. Hatori may seem intimidating and antagonistic at first, but he’s only meddling because he doesn’t want Tooru to experience the same things Kana did.
Hatori is an amazing person because he let Kana go and find her own happiness and though I’m sure he’s sad and bitter about it sometimes, it doesn’t seem to causing any major life problems for him. For most people in my life, after they leave me behind or find happiness elswhere, we do grow apart, but I’m happy for them. However, there are one or two people for whom I cannot be happy when I love them with my whole being and their happiness involves cutting me out of their lives. I’m in agony daily because these few important people cut me out. Hatori, though, voluntarily cut himself out of Kana’s life, completely, and let her find happiness elsewhere, even though he wanted to spend the rest of his life with her.
The only thing that seemed slightly unbelievable about the story was the way Kana became mentally ill because of Akito. Then again, You just never know what will trigger an episode of depression for an individual. If Kana was a 25 or younger, it’s possible she was having onset of a mental illness that would have happened even without Akito triggering it. Perhaps it was a disorder that caused paranoia, or perhaps seeing Akito losing his eye was traumatic enough to cause mental scars for Kana. There’s no way of knowing. Either way, some time after her memories were wiped, Kana found love again and is shown looking very happy indeed.
We got a ton of character history and growth for Hatori, and some for Akito, even though Tooru still hasn’t met him. Also, we got a few tiny bits of character development for my favorite bunny, Momiji. (Mainly, two things. One, he wants to be liked by Tooru. Two, he is close with Hatori and understands him very well.) This episode definitely made me want to hate Akito at some points, but with Fruits Basket being what it is, I suspect even he has a story I can sympathize with. I wonder why Hatori went to Akito for “permission” to marry? Is it because Akito is, like, the “family head” or clan heir? Or was it just because Hatori cared so much about Akito’s opinion?
Perhaps you, like me, were wondering why the dragon of the zodiac is a seahorse in Fruits Basket? The type of seahorse that lives around Japan is not actually called a seahorse but a seadragon. It is known as Tatsu-no-toshigo, where Tatsu means standing and toshigo is bastard child of the dragon. Seahorses and seadragons do kind of resemble small, wingless dragons, though. It’s a trope in Asian fiction to have the seadragon or seahorse stand in for the mythical dragon. In Fruits Basket, I imagine they wanted a real animal to represent each category.
I probably won’t be able to write about this without being either too corny or too skeptical, but in episode 6 there was the theme of “it gets better.” Winter can be compared to grief or depression, and spring to acceptance and healing. The sun always rises, this too shall pass, spring comes, time heals the heart, yada yada, etc. I felt this had to be mentioned because it’s key to understanding Hatori’s character growth and how Tooru symbolizes the slow coming of a new springtime in his life. But yes, if you couldn’t tell, I’m the Frodo type who believes “some wounds never heal.” Of course, things will get relatively better if you keep moving forward, but things won’t be all better, and there may not be true healing. Not for everyone. Ok done.
This episode of Fruits Basket was great as usual! I can’t wait to see what zodiac animal we’ll meet next! This is has been 7mononoke of Anime Rants. Ja ne!!