Monday, July 06, 2009

Overthinking Fruits Basket

I enjoy overthinking shoujo manga. Of course, there are many yummy spoilers for the Fruits Basket manga here I've long thought about the counterpoint of Akito and Tohru. They both have rather masculine names, there is a black wing motif associated with Akito and a white wing motif associated with Tohru, and there's of course, the matter of sexuality. I don't think it's a mistake that Tohru is a pure virgin who blushes and gets flustered when Kyo tells her that they've kissed before, and Akito 'resorts to using her womanhood quickly', in the words of Shigure, who is just one of her lovers.

It's an old archetype- the pure virgin of light vs the experienced witch who is associated with darkness. Akito often speaks about darkness too. She is shown telling Yuki that he is on a pitch black path and saying that her life is dark and so her room has to match. There's also the divide between optimism and pessimism. In volume 2, Hana, Uo and Kyo discuss how Tohru doesn't see her life as a glass half empty. In a scene just a bit later, Shigure talks about how someone thinks his CUNNING PLAN will fail, and someone says "I know full well when my glass is half empty". If one did not know the rest of the story, this would be confusing, but taking a glance at it now, that's certainly Akito saying that[note the hairstyle and kimono, those of you following along in your manga].

Of course, in the manga, Tohru eventually 'wins', but hey, there's always fanfiction.

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Anonymous Michelle Pendlelton said...

Tohru and Akito have the exact opposite personalities. Tohru is filled with optimism despite the struggles she's been through. Akito, on the other hand, is always a negative thinker. Bottom line is, characters like them really make Fruits Basket exciting. =)

7:46 AM  

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