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Manga / Fruits Basket
Fruits Basket provides examples of:
- Abusive Parents: Be thankful you weren't raised in this series. If your parents aren't abusive, they'll be dead in five minutes. The only characters who don't have abusive parents grow up to hate themselves. In the case of the Sohma's, it's partially justified: being cursed and locked in abuse cycles for generations doesn't make them good parent material.
- If you want a full list, we've got:
- Yuki and Ayame, whose parents kicked Ayame out at a very young age and used Yuki's existence purely for self-gain, since the Rat is considered "special" by the Sohma family, worth a lot of money and prestige for the parents.
- Kyo, whose dad blames him for his mom to committing suicide, despite how it was his abusing her for giving birth to the cat that drove her to it. She in turn kept Kyo from going outside and pretended to love his true form when she didn't, until she couldn't pretend anymore and killed herself.
- Momiji, whose mother went insane over the fact that her son could turn into a rabbit, and chose to have all her memories of him erased.
- Rin, whose parents were actually fun and nurturing until she asked them a simple question, then they flipped out, stopped pretending to love her, and physically and mentally abused her so badly that her health deteriorated (including stress-induced ulcers!), and eventually abandoned her after their abuse left her hospitalized.
- Kyoko Honda, whose parents emotionally neglected her because they were more focused on what neighbors thought than what their daughter wanted, then kicked her out when she got hospitalized trying to leave the gang.
- Arisa Uotani, whose father was an alcoholic and whose mother left him for another man. Though a quick scene in the present shows that her relationship with her father is better now.
- Kakeru Manabe and Machi Kuragi, whose father is filthy rich and as a result, their respective mothers (one in marriage, one a mistress) forced them to be the best at everything to compete with each other for his money and influence. (At least until Kakeru finally told his mom to back off.)
- Machi got the worst of it. While her mother gave up pushing her when she no longer had to compete with the mistress's son, she is still very critical and dismissive of her daughter, and blames her for being "dull" when the whole reason Machi became so was to live up to her mother's ridiculously high expectations. Machi's parents also kicked her out the second she tried to interact with her baby brother, because they assumed she had "always been jealous" of him and wanted to murder him, when all she wanted to do was cover him with a blanket so he wouldn't be cold.
- While Kagura isn't hit with as much abuse as the others, her parents are always fighting. They fought so much that she spent a large portion of her childhood hating herself, believing that they fought because she was one of the Zodiac.
- Akito is actually one of the characters who received the worst abuse. Ren, her mother, hated her for getting attention from Akira, her father, and thus proceeded to mistreat and belittle her at every turn, one of the worst examples being forcing her to live as a man so that she could be the only woman Akira loved.
- For a very short while, Kyoko was this to Tohru, in the form of neglect. After Katsuya's death, Kyoko fell into a state of despair in which she did nothing but lie on the floor all day, not feeding or looking after her daughter. Katsuya's father often came to their home to take care of Tohru, and for days he was not around, Tohru took care of both herself and her mother. She gets better when she travels to the sea to commit suicide, and hears a child crying for her mother. This reminds her of her daughter, alone at home, and she rushes back to Tohru, vowing to never abandon her again.
- Notable aversions:
- Tohru's mother (after snapping out of her grief-fueled depression) and father (for the short time he got to be a father) were exemplary.
- Haru's mother appears very briefly in a later chapter, telling Haru that he's got a call about Rin being in the hospital and seeming pretty concerned about him. He also mentions that he isn't sure if she'll yell at him or laugh over how he went Black and trashed a classroom. On the other hand, it was mentioned that he suffered emotional abuse from other (unnamed) relatives, mainly because he was the spirit of the Ox and the myth portrays the Ox as being a dumb animal that was manipulated by the rat. This is the cause of his anger issues, which his parents enrolled him in karate classes to help him deal with them.
- In a refreshing change, Shigure's parents are briefly shown, and he seems to have a slightly disinterested but relatively stable relationship with them (as he does with most people) - he chats with them at a party in Volume 17 without too much fuss.
- We also have Hiro, the brat who's lucky enough to NOT have any abusive parents or ANY abuse in his past. Lucky him.
- Saki Hanajima's parents aren't abusive either, and are actually very loving and supportive, despite Saki having frightening psychic powers.
- Kisa's mother is another example within the Sohma family. When Kisa decides to stay at Shigure's house for a few days to be with Tohru, her mother calls everyday to make sure she's eating properly and to tell Tohru what her favorite food is.
- Ritsu's mother, though asphyxiatingly overprotective of him, does genuinely care about him and even (VERY DRAMATICALLY) tells Tohru (before the latter even meets him) that he's "a good boy" despite all his...quirks.
- If you want a full list, we've got:
- Adaptation Distillation: Due to the anime only running 26 episodes, a lot of events were moved around:
- The chapter where Tohru first visits the Sohma estate and the chapter where she first sees Hatori's Zodiac form are combined into one episode.
- In the manga, Tohru meets Hiro and Ritsu after the incident with Kyo's "true" form, but in the anime, it happens before, since their particular meetings are self-contained. Rin and Kureno's meetings with Tohru, on the other hand, take place during the Beach Arc, so they don't appear in the anime.
- Mayuko-sensei is replaced with the gym teacher in all of her scenes, and she isn't mentioned when Ayame gives Hatori the pictures of Kana's wedding, which he got from her in the manga.
- Adaptation Dye-Job:
- Tohru's eyes are changed from brown to blue and Kyo's bracelet is no longer red and white (which changes its origins). There are other hair and eye variations too, however Tohru's the most prominent.
- Kazuma Sohma, aka Shishou, has his hair changed from brown to silver.
- Adaptation-Induced Plot Hole: The anime made the wrong call on Akito's gender. To be fair, this wasn't revealed until a much later point in the manga than the anime ended on.
- Adult Fear:
- Invoked in a flashback. Tohru's mother Kyoko comes from an abusive household where her parents heavily neglected her and kicked her out of home right before her then-counselor and later-husband Katsuya came to ask them for marriage approval, so once she finds out she's carrying a baby, she has a Heroic B.S.O.D. due to being terrified that her relationship with Tohru would go the way of hers with her own mother.
- For a double-hitter, while Kyoko is a good mother to Tohru, she dies not long before the series starts. Her last thoughts, as she lies bleeding to death in the road, are complete panic at the idea that her daughter will be left all alone and uncared for. This carries over to Hanajima and Uotani (who are Tohru's friends, but also act as surrogate parents at times), who are shocked to learn that while they thought Tohru was living with relatives, she'd spent a week living in a tent. Especially considering that Tohru's only relatives come from Katsuya's side and, save for her grandfather, they all hate her. (And when she has to stay with them for a while, they treat her like absolute garbage.)
- There's also the massive amounts of child abuse in general, both physical and psychological. Most of the characters are able to escape or overcome it by the end of the series, but it's still horrifying, especially considering how well most of it is covered up. And it's made even worse when the biggest of the abusers turns out to have been one of the most abused victims.
- Adults Are Useless:
- The absolute Sohma family hierarchy with Akito on top means that nobody prevents or intervenes in the event of physical or emotional abuse that occurs regularly within the family at Akito's hands regardless of what they think. Discussed and lampshaded from time to time by Hatori and Shigure: Hatori laments from time to time that "[the older zodiac members] really suck at [protecting the younger ones from Akito]," while Shigure prefers to allow things to play out.
- Momiji's father asks his son to accept that his mother's memory of him needs to be erased in order for her to get better, noting that he'll "love Momiji twice as much" to make up for the lack of his mother's later on. It's implied that this meant leaving Momiji to live on his own, asking Momiji to avoid his mother and sister whenever possible and making him give up violin for the sake of keeping said sister in the dark, while Momiji's father went on to continue to live happily with his wife and new child.
- Age Gap Romance: Takaya has said she likes age gap romances.
- Kyoko and Katsuya, with an age difference of eight years.
- Uotani and Kureno, with a difference of nine years.
- The implied relationship between Saki and Kazuma, with a difference of at least 20 years.
- Also possibly Akito and Shigure, who are between seven and nine years apart.
- All-Loving Hero: Tohru Honda. But even here, her kind nature has its faults.
- Always Camp: Ayame Sohma.
- There is one person corresponding to each animal in the Eastern Zodiac, as well as a cat. Hair color and personality appear to be linked to the animal spirit the person possesses, which causes problems for the people cursed by animals with exotic coloring.
- Hilariously lampshaded with Hatsuharu (the cow): To prove to the overeager student council's president that his hair is naturally white with black roots, he drags him into the boys' bathroom and shows him his pubic hair. Of course, when Tohru asks Hatsuharu how he did it, and due to the fact that Haru is in 'black' mode and isn't really thinking straight, things end with a double Megaton Punch.
- Art Evolution: The art gets very noticeably better as the manga goes on, starting from around the end of volume 2. Many characters such as Yuki and Akito originally had rather thin, pointy faces that filled out and softened up as the manga continued.
- Audio Adaptation:
- Babies Ever After: The epilogue shows us Tohru and Kyo's grandchildren.
- The Beastmaster: The Zodiac members do have the ability to attract and (sometimes) control whatever animal they are possessed by. However, only Yuki is seen actually utilizing the latter ability in the early chapters to help him dig out Tohru's belongings after her tent is buried in the aftermath of a landslide. Kyo is regularly mocked by people who don't know his secret, who suggest that he should become a "Cat Trainer" given how cats are attracted to him.
- The Beautiful Elite: Practically everyone, but especially the Sohmas.
- Berserk Button: Yuki is pretty much a walking berserk button for Kyo.
- Hurting Tohru in any way is a surefire way to enrage Yuki.
- The one born in the year of the Ox? Yeah, don't call him a "dumb ox," or bring up how he was tricked in the story.
- Best way to set Akito off? Be a male Zodiac member who wants to leave the family or become romantically involved with someone; or be an outsider who wants to enter a relationship with a Zodiac member. Akito will wreck you. (Or your loved one.)
- Big Bad: Akito is directly responsible for a good portion of the problems several of the Sohmas dealt with. Ren was the one that ultimately pushed Akito over the edge.
- Big Damn Heroes: When Yuki goes with his mother to a parent teacher meeting to discuss his future post high-school, she coldly dictates her chosen path for him, ignoring or overriding both Yuki and his teacher's objections... Until Ayame shows up, drives their mother into Rage Quitting, and takes over the meeting. This marks the point of true reconciliation between the brothers.
- Big, Screwed-Up Family: The Sohma clan is all over the map with the myriad ways to screw with a child - if a method of parenting can cause psychological problems, rest assured that at least one member of the family is doing it. As indicated by the flashback showing Ren's early days with Akira, the nasty backbiting and poisoning opinions for influence has been going on for generations, and the penultimate chapter implies that this might have been part of the Sohma family curse as well. To put it another way, there's a grand total of three caring biological parents in this family still alive at the start of the series, Hiro's mother, Kisa's mother and Ritsu's mother, and the latter's parenting has its own issues. Including living adoptive parents bumps that number up to four.
- Bishie Sparkle: With an entire cast of Bishōnen, this naturally happens a lot, but most notably during Tohru's daydream of "if Yuki and Kyo got along".
- Blank White Eyes: Used to great effect throughout the series, especially by mild-mannered characters shocked with the insanity around them.
- Blessed with Suck: Sure, on paper having the ability to transform into one of the 12 animals and the cat from the zodiac sounds like it would be pretty fun and/or cool for some people. But then you soon realize that you have to deal with how the people around you that know about the curse will react, especially your parents. Made more clear since every member of the Sohma family that has the curse usually has their parents being either abusive or wanting nothing to do with them.
- Boyfriend Bluff: Kyo pulls a non-verbal version of this to protect Tohru from some guys that want to take advantage of her.
- Bratty Half-Pint: Hiro Sohma
- Break Up Demand: Akito is fond of this. She breaks up Hatori and Kana, Rin and Haru, and also Hiro and Kisa.
- Although Akito doesn't demand break ups verbally so much as lash out at to one half of the relationship that leads the other half to break the relationship off. She objected so violently that she struck Hatori's face with a ceramic vase, which shattered and blinded one eye, then blamed Kana for his injury, and because of the curse Kana had to blame herself, then nearly died from grief and had to have all her memories of Hatori erased to get better. Akito also hospitalized Rin and threatened to do the same to Haru unless she broke up with him, and it's implied also got Kisa hospitalized to intimidate Hiro into distancing himself from her.
- Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: Kyo and Tohru fit this to a T. To a lesser extent, Hiro and Kisa as well.
- Broken Bird: Isuzu/Rin Sohma. And Akito.
- Bug Buzz: Ah, the perfect summer sound!
- But Not Too Foreign: Momiji is half-German and speaks German fluently from time to time in the manga, but he is also half-Japanese.
- Call-Back: One of the last chapters of the manga has Tohru falling off a cliffside that crumbles underneath her - the same cliffside that Shigure told her was unstable in the very first chapter.
- Cast Full of Pretty Boys: Justified and lampshaded as the Sohma being The Beautiful Elite, but in fact it goes way further than just them.
- Censor Steam: When the Sohmas turn back from animals into (completely naked) humans, the transformation is accompanied by smoke clouds that handily obscure almost everything naughty.
- Cerebus Syndrome: Although the general message of the anime is one of The Power of Friendship and The Power of Love, the buried angst from the Dysfunction Junction becomes dominating in the later manga volumes.
- Cerebus Retcon: Early on in the manga, Kyo and Yuki's rivalry is Played for Laughs. The reasons behind it, revealed in later volumes, are... decidedlynot.
- The Chessmaster: Ren Sohma
- Chekhov's Gun: The manga is full of them (almost all are cut out in the anime adaptation) including Kyo's beads but most noticeably the little red hat that Tohru owns. It is shown sitting in her tent on the very first page, hanging off the iconic picture of her mother. Turns out to be one of the most driving plot devices as Tohru has a dream remembering her receiving the hat from a little boy when she was lost as a child and he led her home and in the second volume goes into full detail about the event. But while hinting at the significance of this story, what at first seems like it might only be a cute accidental meeting as we don't know whether the mysterious boy is Yuki or Kyo at first and when we find it was Yuki it is still unsure who the Official Couple will be, it actually turns out to weave into a whole Jigsaw Puzzle Plot between Kyo, Yuki and Tohru's Dark and Troubled Past where Everyone Is Related in ways that ultimately turn every character relationshipon their head and clears up all their past actions towards each other, in one Reveal right after another. All because a little red hat.
- Childhood Marriage Promise: Subversion: Kyo's promise to Kagura was extracted by her threatening him with a knife (or a large rock in the anime).
- The Clan: Well, the Sohmas.
- Cleaning Up Romantic Loose Ends: In the manga, most obviously with Yuki.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: Kagura Sohmais a genuinely nice girl, but around Kyo she tends to switch into berserker mode, leaving the object of her 'affection' a crumpled heap on the ground before she knows it. ("My love! Who did this to you??") Kyo is rightly terrified when she first appears.
- The Prince Yuki Fan Club is the definition of this trope although their leader, Motoko, later realizes she's being selfish about what Yuki wants after an attempt to confront Hanajima backfires and Hana questions them about being too pushy and forceful towards Yuki. She then speaks to Yuki and gets over him.
- Akito is an enormous one. She has her reasons and eventually gets over it. Her mother is even worse.
- Color Failure: Usually Kyo after Kagura visits.
- Covered in Mud: At one point, Tohru's uniform is dirty from the mudslide that fell on her tent. Once she gets cleaned up, one of Yuki's fan club, jealous that Tohru arrived at school with Yuki, says "That mud looked so good on you".
- Creepy Crossdresser: Akito in the manga, prior to her HeelFace Turn.
- Cross-Popping Veins: Parodied. After Kagura causes a big mess at Shigure's house, Kyo yells at Shigure for being too easy going about the incident. Shigure promptly reaches down and sticks a large, red set of veins to his head, declaring "Now I'm mad," and removing them a moment later. And Kyo in cat form is seen often sporting these.
- Curse Escape Clause: The only way to break the curse is if one who is under the curse but not a part of the family is truly loved. Originally supposed to make it inescapable since the Cat wasn't cast out until later.
- Cursed with Awesome: Averted with Hatori, whose transformation symbolizes that the curse is weakening and so he becomes a seahorse instead of a dragon.
- Played straight with Kureno, who transforms into a bird and thus has the ability to fly (though he only mentiones this briefly in a flashback and his animal form flying is never actually shown).
- The Cutie: Tohru Honda and Kisa Sohma
- Dark-Skinned Redhead: Kyo is darker skinned than everyone else, at any rate. Could be partially due to his curse, partly to how much time he spends outside.
- Dénouement Episode: The final episode of the anime is largely this.
- Don't Try This at Home: After tripping Kyo (who was running at breakneck speed), Hatsuharu then breaks the fourth wall to say that doing this could cause serious injury to anyone besides Kyo.
- Which prompts Kyo to yell back "Don't try it here, either! And who the hell are you talking to anyways?!"
- Due to the Dead: Many characters assist in proper respects to Tohru's dead mother.
- Dysfunction Junction: Everyone has a tragic past, screwed up family history, and/or other significant psychological issues. Parents in general tend to be abusive, neglectful, ashamed of their children's forms, or dead. Some characters slip into states of violent psychosis when excited or annoyed.
- On a lighter note, the rampant cross-dressing in the Sohma family seems almost normal by comparison to the myriad accounts of abuse and neglect.
- In the manga, a brief look into Kimi Todo's backstory shows her getting teased in middle school, with the girls wondering aloud why she doesn't just go hang out with the boys and get by on her looks. And then Kimi subverts your expectations hilariously.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: For all the love and friendship this series has, there's also a lot of pain.
- Eastern Zodiac: There is a character for each animal in the zodiac, plus a cat and the 'god' who arranged the legendary banquet. "God" doesn't get a transformation, however, it does have the power to manipulate the other spirits at will, forcing them to do anything it asks. They also love it unconditionally and can never blame it for anything. Unfortunately for the owner of the dragon spirit, a little wordplay means that instead of turning into an actual dragon (which would be badass), he turns into a 竜の落し子 ("tatsu no otoshigo"; "baby dragon"), or "seahorse". However, Shigure in the manga says that the curse is falling apart and even the animal forms are half-baked forms of what they used to be, and he actually says: "Look at Hatori, for example.". While the traditional legend says there was one banquet and that the rat tricked the cat into missing it, the end of the manga reveals what really happened: the animals partied with the god all the time, but when they started approaching death, the god came up with a drink of reincarnation and gave some to the unconscious and dying cat. The cat woke up after drinking it and gave a Who Wants to Live Forever? speech that pissed everyone else off. Dramatically Missing the Point, they felt betrayed by the cat, drank the elixir, and died at some later point.
- Even the Guys Want Him: Yuki Sohma. Hell, even his teacher wants him.
- Everyone Is Related: Both in the sense that half the cast is actually biologically related to each other (the Sohma family is HUGE), but also in that the characters all manage to have some sort of connection to each other. The friend Yuki makes at school, for example? His girlfriend's father just happened to be the driver of the car that ran into Tohru's mother. Tohru's homeroom teacher? She happens to be an old acquaintance of Shigure, Hatori and Ayame, by virtue of being Kana(Hatori's ex-fiance)'s best friend and is in love - and by the end of the series, most likely on her way to being an Official Couple - with Hatori. The most obvious example, however, is that Tohru just happened to have met Yuki as a child, and Kyo just happened to know her mother.
- Evil Matriarch: Ren Sohma, in spades.
- Foreshadowing: In the first chapter, Shigure tells Tohru that the hillsides are weak. In chapter 121, when Tohru is trying to befriend Akito, the cliff crumbles underneath her and she falls.
- In chapter 19, the female student council assistants imagine Momiji in the male uniform after a growth spurt, accurately.
- Forgotten First Meeting
Hanajima knew about the Sohma curse the whole time.Since she is psychic, it is possible. Also, it was somewhat hinted at the end of the manga.
The cat's grotesque true form is a result of a curse from god & not anger at the curse.This troper got this guess based on the "true" origin of the zodiac curse. Summary: Basically god was lonely until he found companionship with a cat which gave him the idea of inviting other animals for a banquet whom became the members of the zodiac. Every night god & the animals partied until the cat fell on the verge of death. God then bound the cat, God & other animals in a circle of reincarnation which the other animals happily agreed to not wanting to be separated, however the cat disagreed stating that all things had to end. The other animals & God instead of musing upon what the cat said considered it an act of rejection. In anger at this supposedly betrayal, God cursed the cat to be born in its hideous state not only as "punishment" but to ensure that it would be unable to bond with other people, thus ensuring its complete devotion & making it that the cat would never want to leave God. Support for this would come from Kyo & Akito's relationship. Akito insists on preventing Kyo from forming relations with anyone insisting that only he she will understand him.
Tohru is secretly a mass murderer.She's always so... happy. shes suffered so much and she still smiles, but what if its a slasher smile? What if she snapped years ago? She's nice to the public, yeah, but who can tell? or, in a reversal, she's secretly maniacally depressed.
- Oh, no. She's nothing so mundane. She's a demon. On dark nights when you're at your most depressed and vulnerable, she'll come to you, whispering reassurances. If you respond, if you let her comfort you, she tears your very soul away from your body and devours it. But her smile never changes, her words never cease, even when you realize they are worse than hollow.
Tohru represents Canada.She's excessively polite, attempts to keep the peace among her quarreling friends, and her colors (as seen in the swimsuit chapter) are red and white.
- I would like to expand this theory by suggesting that Fruits Basket takes place in the same universe as Axis Powers Hetalia
- If that's true, then I'm willing to bet that Momiji represents all three Axis Powers - He's from Germany, lives in Japan, and acts like Italy. How it's possible to be all three though, I don't know.
Momiji is Obfuscating StupidityHe acts like a child and pretends to cry whenever Kyo hits him hoping to catch him off gaurd and hit him back. The only reason why he hasn't yet is because he didn't want to do it in front of Tohru.
- Alternatively, he was only crying to get Tohru to comfort him...
- This is practically canon is you actually take a long look at Momiji's character. He is smart. He is the only one that will recognize the fact that they have purposefully ignored the Cat's fate. When his curse breaks he becomes a slightly colder personality and he has a manipulative streak in him, especially towards Kyo. This isn't to say that Momiji isn't a genuinely very kind and childish person at heart, but his is definitely Ofuscating Stupidity.
The "god spirit" possessing Akito Sohma is Aizen Sousuke.They describe themselves as "possessed" by spirits, not that they "are" the spirits. Akito is sure she's God, which is Aizen's general claim. Akito dresses in men's clothes because Aizen is sick of wearing frilly womens' kimonos.
Akito is anorexic.Breasts are mostly fat, right? It makes sense that she would essentially starve herself in an attempt to keep them small. It would explain how thin she is, her irritability and mood swings, her poor health and pallor, and, of course, how flat she is.
- Add another tick to Ren Sohma's Evil Matriarch list: SHE STARVED HER DAUGHTER TO KEEP UP THE APPEARANCE OF THERE BEING A MALE HEAD OF THE FAMILY!!
The Sohma family is inbred.It explains all of the mental disorders in the family. Ren is Obsessive-Compulsive and abusive, Akito is sociopathic and sadistic, Yuki has insecurities, Haru has multiple personalities, Kisa's a mute, Momiji has A.D.H.D., Hatori is bipolar, Hiro is jaded, Ritsu also has insecurities, Kureno has attachment issues, Shigure is a pervert (which could be stretched to be a sex addiction), Kagura is extraordinarily Bipolar, and Kyo has anger issues.
- Except Kisa's mute-ness came from outside sources, but I am willing to stretch that into a reaction of GAD-turned-w/Agoraphobia (She ran away from home to hide from people) And it ties into the large amount of other Anxiety issues and issues which have a co-morbidity with anxiety issues.
- For the record, while Shigure is definitely a flirt he doesn't act like a womanizer. That is, he says stupid, perverted things (mostly because they get a rise out of people) but a sex addiction? No.
- Personally, I think Shigure is also a sociopath[I'm using the manga as my canon here], but bipolar people have manic states and depressions, none of which Hatori or Kagura have. And note that both Ren and Akira have vague illnesses, and Akito often suffers from vague illnesses. Yuki also suffered from health problems. I don't think Ren is OCD, due to her lack of compulsions. She just is obsessed unhealthily with her dead husband.
- I'll grant that Hatori never has a manic state (he seems like he has depression in spades, though), but Kagura clearly has both states - while people focus on her manic Yandere moments, she gets rather depressed at times (particularly later on, as she muses about how Kyo loves Tohru). Also, given how he acts when nobody can see, I wouldn't say Shigure is a sociopath - he does what he does because he thinks it's necessary (even though he does ultimately manipulate Kyo and Tohru into the conditions required to break the curse for his own benefit primarily).
- With regards to Hatori being bipolar, he could always be type 2. It's categorized by having the violent swings of emotions yet not showing it (normally keeping a stoic or emotionless facade) from my personal experience, but its clinical definition is that it's just like regular bipolar disorder, just that the manic state never reaches full-on mania.
- But Ren is just a Sohma by marriage, not by blood. She was a maid.
- Actually she probably is a Sohma by blood, as the family is so large and seems to be made up entirely of one family, even the maids who for whatever reasons are members of lower standing.
- There's always the chance that Akira, Akito's father, was a product of inbreeding as well. The manga never mentions this, but the current generation certainly couldn't have been the first/second generation to practice inbreeding, right?
Yuki's mother wanted him to be the cat.Yuki's mother is the only zodiac mother we know of who had another child with the perfect knowledge that it was possible that child might be born cursed. Since she had already given birth to the cursed Ayame, it's reasonable to assume she learned a lot about the curse, including the curse of the cat. She could have known that, while the cat himself is a pariah, the family members of the cat are extremely prominent and highly placed within the family (note how Kazuma, the previous cat's grandson, is so revered). What if she knew that the previous cat had died or was dying? It's possible she may have gotten pregnant with that goal in mind: to be not only the mother of two cursed Sohmas, but the mother of the shunned cat. Although the rat is certainly revered, she never got over the disappointment of not being the mother of the cat, and always resented Yuki for it. It would also add a nice symmetry—we know that Yuki and Kyo wish they were more like the other, and we also know that Kyo's dead mother wished that her son had been the rat. Wouldn't it also make sense for Yuki's mother to wish that her son had been the cat?
Akito actually is a boy.He was raised to think he was a girl by his mother - who wanted him to be one, hence the cross dressing and 'hiding' his gender from the rest of the Sohma's. Being as obscenely rich as the Sohma family is, Akito's mother could certianly afford to have sex-change surgeries done to him, as well as medicines to help, with bribes to keep the doctors silent. Well, that, or when he changes into the 'God' - like the others change into their Zodiac forms - he changes into a girl. But being The God, he can transform at will, which messes with his already frail body and mind, perhaps explaining his/her mysterious illnesses.
- But Akito's mother wanted him to be male, so that she could provide a "proper Sohma heir." It's part of why Akito has so many hang-ups about her sex, and women in general, by the time of the manga. Plus, sex-change surgeries and hormone therapy are long-term procedures; even if you could cover those up by saying that she's "sickly" and can't be seen, that would still be plenty of time for someone to notice that something was going on.
The Sohma family is really a cult.Throughout the whole series, the readers learn that the Sohma family is twisted. Going through the cult checklist, they appear to have many of the signs of a cult. The members of the family have to have an unyielding level of devotion to the head of the family. (Akin to a cult's obsession with their leader.) One of Akito's statements to Toruh says how an outsider could never understand their ways. (Their radically different worldview puts them at odds with mainstream society.) One of the older women of the family tells the rooster that if Akito wishes for one of the zodiac to die, he needs to let Akito harm them, such as what happened to Rin. (Double-whammy: More devout members enforce the rules and the leader is able to escape punishment for such actions.) Yuki, Kyo, Hatori, Hiro, and Haru are all shamed and guilted, to keep them in line. (Another cult sign.) Yuki is psychologically traumatized. Kyo's blamed for his mom's death, though she may've been unstable in the first place. Hatori has the whole thing with Kana on his shoulders. Hiro feels guilty for being unable to help Kisa. And Haru feels guilty over what happened to Rin. The whole thing where the zodiac members go back to the house for the rest of their lives also counts. (They spend an extraordinarily large amount of time on group activities.) Rin, with her attempt to break the curse, is punished harshly. (Members are discouraged or punished for thinking or acting for themselves if it is against the cult.)
- The Sohma Family doesn't actually "really" need to be cult because for all intents and purposes they canonically are. The only difference is that their personal beliefs that drive their cult lifestyle are actually based in reality.
- Also, it is stated in the series that as soon as the Curse breaks the whole Sohma Family structure began to break down dramatically.
Tohru was bullied much more heavily than she lets on in flashbacks.First of all, it isn't much like Tohru at all to keep grudges or dwell on tough experiences. The only reason we know about the rice ball incident at all is because it related to her problem at the time of feeling excluded from the Sohmas. When she gives her speeches of encouragement to other people it's usually that she quotes her mom and then tacks on a little bit of her own opinion. However, the first time she explained what Kisa was going through, not once did she mention "My mom used to say." Her relating to Kisa was way too specific to be just her theorizing on what she might have been going through, too. I think the game of Fruits Basket was just one part of the bullying, and Tohru and trouble telling her mom about it. This is why Kisa and Tohru became to close so fast, they could understand each other.
- The same might apply to Haru (although the same kind of lame backstory shows up in The Wallflower so it's possible he could have really reacted that way...)
- It is known that Tohru is best friends with two outcasts, a delinquent and a freak girl who we know was bullied through her childhood. I doubt she gravitated towards them only because she is so nice. The girl was an outcast herself and had no friends, until she met those two. This only breaks down in High School when Word of God states that Tohru's class in those years was very accepting towards everyone and had a good familial sense between them, hence why they probably also took in the craziness of Kyo Sohma so easily.
Hanajima's brother Megumi owns a Death Note.He can curse people based on their names. Sounds familiar?
The Sohma Family's Involuntary Shapeshifting may be a Freudian Metaphor.This is not so much a guess as a joke. Having only seen six episodes of the anime by the time this is written, nobody has had their sexual orientation brought up, and it is established that it takes a hug from the opposite sex to bring out the animal in them. With that in mind, one might see the Sohma Curse as a case of Something Else Also Rises. Of course, this all assumes it's all about sex to begin with, which is likely not the case in a character-driven manga such as this.
- Although it's a good idea, the curse is triggered by exhaustion (the body becoming weak) as well as the hug from the opposite sex.
- Funny idea but it was always my understanding that the curse functions in that way specifically, simply to keep members from forming simple and intimate relationship with other people "outside" of the curse, even to the point that they can't hug at last one half of their own biological family. Humans need touch in order to be mentally stable but Zodiac members "need" to only be close to God and the other Zodiacs.
Tohru is Haruhi Suzumiya.How likely is it that random bishounen would let her live in their house? Reality warping has to have a part in that.
Akito never hurt Kagura because he's scared of her.She's literally the only female Zodiac member that never is directly attacked in any way by Akito, even though she's obsessed with Kyo. Considering her...outbursts, maybe Akito was aware that unlike Kisa or Rin, Kagura would fight back and could potentially cause him a lot of damage.
- I think Akito probably emotionally/mentally abused Kagura as much as he did everyone else (she seems to have loving parents but states that she felt horrible about her own existence, so something must have been getting to her behind the scenes) but had no cause to physically harm as she never got close to a male character, in Akito's eyes, who doesn't even recognize Kyo as someone anyone could enjoy spending time around.
The whole story was caused by the maids.The only people who seem to blindly go along with the Sohma things, with no questions or self-doubt, are the maids. And if you look at the flashbacks, Ren seemed to be much more stable until everybody started telling her that she was just evilly seducing Akira. The maids seem to be the ones who started her on fearing that Akira would leave her. Imagine if they'd treated her like she was actually one of the family— she might not have raised Akito to be so crazy, and in turn Akito might have been better-behaved towards the rest of the zodiac. So the whole story is really the maids' fault.
Rin and Haru initially used sex as a comfort mechanism.
- It's a non-squicky explanation for why they did it at such a young age, and a logical extrapolation of their unhealthy emotional states.
Hatori can erase memories because...
- He's the dragon. Dragons really did exist in the far past, but used their memory wiping powers to make the rest of the world forget them, maybe because they were being hunted to extinction or some such sad thing.
Ayame has some degree of martial arts skills.
- Out of the cursed Sohma, we know that Yuki, Kyo, Haru, and Kagura practice martial arts, and if this troper remembers correctly, the manga may have implied that more of them have learned it. In Volume 8 of the manga, when Ayame and Yuki go outside, Ayame says something along the lines that he had to come outside with Yuki because he needed to protect him from bandits (In addition to the fact that he also made a promise to not leave Yuki's side for that day). Ayame's zodiac form appears to be a garden snake of some kind, which, this troper assumes, probably doesn't have venom. So without being able to inject venom into possible attackers, how else would Ayame plan to defend his little brother?
Akira was the former Rat of the Zodiac.
- If you look at the chapter page where Akira's face is shown, we see his profile. His eyes and hair and face seem very much like Yuki's. Somewhere on the Furuba wiki page, it said that Akira was the former God. This cannot be true. For one, Akira and Ren had Akito, who bore the spirit of the God of the zodiac. Then it stands to reason that Akira's position as leader of the Sohma clan is different. The reason why everyone in the Main House was overjoyed was because 'God' had not been born for generations...even a cenutry or more. The Main House is ruled by the leader of the Zodiac, or at least, one of its members. Who better to lead the Sohmas but the one closest to God, the Rat?
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