Sometimes not Getting Punched Hurts More // Fruits Basket Ep. 2 Review
Episode 2 Review: They’re All Animals!
It is hard to beat around the bush when a teenage girl falls on top of you, and you turn into a dog. Shigure know the jig is up, and opens episode 2 of Fruits Basket with a quick and dirty synopsis of the Soma family plight. Everyone is inhabited by the spirit of the animals of the Zodiac. He is the spirit of a dog, Yuki is the spirit of a rat, and Kyo is the spirit of a cat. Yes, the cat is not actually one of the twelve of the zodiac, but lets not dwell on that too much yet.
I thought about how hard it would be to keep it a secret if I was the embodiment of a zodiac animal. If they aren’t able to hug a member of the opposite sex, how has the Soma family line continued past a single generation? These are some questions to be answered. Unfortunately Tohru doesn’t seem quite that bothered by it once explained. I imagine I would have a lot more questions for the Soma family if I found out. Of course there does seem to be someone who might know about this ordeal.
Akito – Head of the Family
Casually introduced in this episode is Akito, the head of the Samo family household. Obviously a family of humans with spirit animals would have an all controlling member at the head. Opinion on Akito seems to vary within the immediate Samo family surrounding Tohru. Yuki is hesitant to trust Akito. There is definitely some good reasoning there. Kyo is outright offended by the mention of Akito. Shigure is most defferent to Akito, a trait probably gained by his maturity in age.
Yuki is most definitely harboring resentment for some of the comments and actions of Akito. We find out Yuki’s friends were all essentially brainwashed after an incident when Yuki’s rat secret was uncovered. From that event we have two issues stemming from it. Akito has clearly influence Yuki’s thoughts negatively by planting a seed of doubt in his mind. He sees his rat spirit as a curse and not as a gift. Its great to see that Tohru, when sound of mind, is the path to clearing up this issue. Even in this second episode we can tell Yuki is already questioning Akito’s original words.
We also have the issues that Akito has caused for Kyo. We don’t have a direct touchpoint for when Kyo was pushed away, but it feels like he is treated like the bastard child of the family. He is metaphorically seen that way because he is the cat. Kyo is the lone outsider of a family filled with Zodiac spirits. This makes him thirteen out of twelve. I think it is pretty clear his is what makes him such an aggressive character. He is both naturally opposed to the rat as he is a cat, and he doesn’t feel like he is an actual member of the family. No wonder he needs to beat Yuki in a fight.
We still only saw Yuki, Kyo, and Shigure Soma this episode in terms of animals. Akito is the only other member of the Soma family who is revealed yet still a mystery. We do know that they have the power to communicate with animals of their kind. Shigure passes this off as a minor power, but I disagree. Being able to communicate with other dogs sounds like a great power.
Hugs from Tohru
It is inevitable we are going to see a lot of accidental and intentional hugs from Tohru this series. We are already starting of course. I like that it begins to feed into the dynamic and relationship between Tohru and Kyo. Kyo clearly has a crush on Tohru, and can’t seem to get a grasp on how to proceed. He is too angry and hot to handle. Tohru is not blissfully unaware, but we definitely aren’t quite there in the story for this subplot to be fleshed out yet. She has a natural attraction for Kyo as he has the spirit of the cat. Something she has always been fond of.
I like the constant battle between Kyo and Yuki. They really embody their respective animal. The rat always wins just like in the story. Of course that is what make Kyo feel left out of the family. I hope for his sake, he can stake his claim one day.
[Images via Crunchyroll]