Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (2023)

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (1)

I had intentionally wanted to combine the review for these episodes with my previous article but, in the end, I chose to separate them to reduce it from being too lengthy. Besides, I wanted to give enough time to analyze these two particular episodes because there is so much to unpack from them!

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (2)

Tohru: [in tearful thoughts after telling Momiji about Momo wanting to be with him] Kept apart, even though the person they long for is still in this world… And the distance only makes those feelings more intense…

Yes, you definitely bet that my episode titling was inspired by Bruno Mars’ amazingly soulful song “Talking to the Moon”! And why not? The sentiments evoked in both the song and this episode are the same: the feelings of yearning until your heart breaks rings so loud and clear!!! What I love about this episode so much is the parallelism of our characters’ experiences, so kudos for Natsuki Takaya-sensei for effectively bringing out their vulnerable emotions. For Momiji, Kureno, and Kyo, they know that the love of their lives stand right before them but are hesitant for the chase! This episode was definitely their emotional push, leading them to choose the path they were meant to follow.

Part 1: Momiji, and his brotherly love for Momo

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (3)

Back in S1, Ep. 14, we were able to learn about Momiji’s heartbreaking backstory caused by the Sohma family curse. To this day, he had to sacrifice his presence in his own family to keep them happy. This decision also meant that he would not be allowed to bond with his beloved younger sister Momo, who has no idea of his familial connection to her. With such a difficult choice to follow, it is amazing how he still chooses to be a kind and happy soul to whoever he meets and doesn’t hold a grudge against his own mother. Instead, he watches and loves his family from afar, even if he is not at the heart of it.

But when Momo asks Tohru to ask Momiji to be her big brother, you can’t help but drown in a sea of tears! His forbidden wish became fulfilled by Momo’s simplest request. A reality that had originally existed beyond his wildest dreams, he is now able to wish for a new opportunity: to be a professional violinist so that he could host his own private concert for his family to attend alone. He knows now that he is just a step closer to experiencing what it’s like to be in a normal family. Things can only go up for him from here on out 🙂

Part 2: Kureno, and his romantic love for Uo…

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (4)

On the other hand, Kureno’s wish might not come easy for him. Compared to the other Zodiac members, he has a tighter leash to be by Akito’s side. So when Tohru offers him a chance of freedom by giving Uo’s contact number, he is allowed to believe that maybe–just maybe–his life is not meant to be isolated from the rest of the world after all. Tohru’s words also provide him with a sense of hope:

Tohru: Please, just one more thing. Uo-chan’s my friend and it’s hard to see her hurting, So at least take this. Here [hands Kureno a note], it has her contact information. Accepting it doesn’t mean you have to get in touch with her right away, or ever for that matter! But, who knows? You might feel different about it tomorrow. Maybe…maybe you’ll wake up and then suddenly decide you wanna see her again. It might not be tomorrow, it could be the day after that, or a year from now, or ten years! But, as long as you’re alive, things will keep changing, in ways you can’t predict! As long as you’re alive, you’ll find new things to wish for!

Entering a new stage of life is quite daunting, especially if you are so used to your original rhythms of life. For Kureno, he mentions that he is “content” living under the Sohma family traditions. He is conditioned to serve Akito, even at the cost–as Uo points out (S2, Ep. 5)–of his own happiness. But by seeing Uo, hearing her laughter and witnessing her unique sides after their first date, his life experience with her was immeasurable to what the Sohma family could provide to him. But even so, the next events transpire:

[Tohru hides the note in a nearby shrub] I’ll hide this in here, okay? So no one but us will know it’s there…
[Tohru walks up to Kureno, who is puzzled at her gestured “binding hands”]
Tohru: [defeated tone] Okay, I’m done now. Go on, do it.
Kureno: [realizing the matter, chuckles] Oh! I uh- I don’t have handcuffs on me. Sorry! It’s okay. I’ll give you a pass. There’s someone here who’s worried about you.
[Momiji enters]

  • Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (5)
  • Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (6)
  • Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (7)

(Images from @Kitsunes97/fruitsbasket.fandom.com)

[Kureno then proceeds to walk behind Tohru, entering the shadow of a tree] Now, go on back. [He pushes Tohru forward to the sunlight]

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (8)

Tohru: Um, Kureno [shocked]

(Video) Blind React: Fruits Basket 2019 Ep. 16-17

(image from @Kitsunes97/fruitsbasket.fandom.com)

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (9)

Kureno [wearing a sad smile] You shouldn’t be here. It’s not the place for someone like you.

(image from @Kitsunes97/fruitsbasket.fandom.com)

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (10)

[As Momiji pulls Tohru away, Kureno says in a solemn tone]
Goodbye.

(image from @Kitsunes97/fruitsbasket.fandom.com)

[Camera pulls away leaving Kureno alone in the shadow]

Tohru: [in her thoughts] My heart… is breaking…

I love the symbolism in his actions and how they “interact” with the present setting. The fact that he willingly pushes Tohru away from the tree’s shadows for him to only inhabit shows that, for now–in deciding between Akito or Uo–he will remain by Akito’s side. This dark path and position is for him, and him alone, to travel.

We can only ponder why he is selflessly sacrificing his individual freedom to be with Akito…

But will he fully follow through with his actions?

(Video) Fruits Basket Episode 16/17 REACTION

This episode ends with him looking up to stare at the bright hopeful moon, the only bright light in the dark night that enshrouds him. He knows that he wishes to be with Uo as he grips her contact information in his hand. The only thing for him to do now is to believe that his hopeful wish can become a reality… Will he go and meet her?

And Kureno isn’t our only man lost in love’s labyrinth.

Part 3: Kyo, and his romantic love for Tohru… and… vice versa?

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (11)

Staring at Kyo and Tohru’s dialogue at the end of this episode doesn’t excellently deliver the intimacy of their moment. I have attached GIFs here to enjoy their scene together

Time and time again, we witness Kyo having an emotional tug of war with himself: he knows his destined future to be isolated forever conflicts with his hungered future to be with Tohru. But when his conversation with Tohru on the roof leads him to think that Tohru hypothetically likes someone else, he–without a second thought–chose her finding her own happiness over his own.

IF THAT ISN’T LOVE, THEN I DON’T KNOW WHAT LOVE IS!

But the moment when Kyo utters his words of congratulations, Tohru erupts in tears! As mentioned in the previous episode (S2, Ep. 15), Tohru seems to be stuffing some feelings that she has about Kyo. However, his words of allowing her to find happiness with someone else triggered her to feel heart ache! What emotions could possibly be running through her head? All we know at this point is that she subconsciously wanted to be with Kyo after her long day and she knows that the roof is Kyo’s place of privacy for him to quell his own thoughts. Being on the roof together is the only time where they can be alone with no one else around. Notice the pattern of her always being able to open up to Kyo about her thoughts and feelings since the beginning of this season and during the Beach arc! And remember how she also mentioned that Kyo was an “angel from the heavens” that saved her from being lost in her unknown but traumatic childhood memories (S2 Ep. 14)?

(Video) LOVING ONESELF!!! Fruits Basket 2019 EPISODE 16 17 18 commentary / reaction

I don’t know about you, but with all of these significant events, you can’t help but conclude that Tohru is starting to develop some deep feelings for Kyo too! 😉 Only time will tell if these feelings will grow even further!

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (12)

In my closing thoughts on this episode, keep note of the mysterious lady that Kureno talks to briefly. Who could she possibly be? Is she perhaps the Ren figure that Akito despises?

(Image from @Kitsunes97/fruitsbasket.fandom.com)

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (13)

This fun episode can be broken down into two parts!

Part 1: Tohru, Change of Wind

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (14)

Tohru [inner monologue]: It’s strange. He can unsettle me or make me happy with just a few words. Kyo is a mystery.

This is a subheading that you can take quite literally compared to my other episode titles. LOL Notice how monumental moments for Tohru are noted by a slight breeze. It’s definitely an indication of her stirring feelings, all of which are triggered by Kyo. This episode works as a continuation of Tohru’s confused feelings on crying on the rooftop from the last episode. For example, when Kyo is separated from the group because a girl is confessing to him, Yuki is able to ease Tohru’s worries.

(image from @Kitsunes97/fruitsbasket.fandom.com)

When Kyo tells her to mind her own business in an annoyed manner, she is shocked. But when he asks her what’s wrong in an affectionate tone, she feels happy. She is affected by Kyo’s words, experiencing both heart throbbing and heart aching moments by just being with him. These moments definitely illustrate that, compared to other characters, Kyo is able to make her feel vulnerable and emotionally aware of herself. That totally means that Kyo is much more special to her than she would definitely admit.

(Video) Fruits Basket Funny Moments #4 | Season 2 (2020)

But what I find even more perplexing about her feelings is that, compared to Kureno and Momiji, there is no physical distance for her to overcome–Kyo is right next to her at this moment and she could express her love freely to him if she wanted to! Perhaps she is either starting to realize how much he means to her or is restraining herself to fully fall for him… but what could possibly be stopping her to do so…?

Part 2: Best of Friends and New Opportunities for Yuki

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (16)

This second part of the episode focuses on two important relationships that Yuki has. First, we must analyze the impact of Tohru in his Yuki’s life. And, as I’ve reiterated countlessly, Yuki really treasures Tohru’s presence in his life, who undoubtedly allowed himself to believe in the importance of his life in this world. As damaged as he felt emotionally and mentally by being a Sohma, Tohru became his encouragement to keep moving forward.

Yuki: [as he is walking with Tohru in his head] Thank you. I can never tell for sure how much of me you see: my cowardice, my resolve. I think you probably see both. And no matter what, you keep smiling quietly for me. You’re so precious to me, even now.

But even with these sentiments, he knows he cannot realize them as romantic feelings. Remember how he said that he knew for sure that Kyo would reject the classmate’s confession? It’s because he has now fully come to terms as to what Tohru means to him–it’s just a matter of time before he is able to reveal it to us. He willingly surrenders to Kyo but will still be there for Tohru as a token of gratitude for her help in his life. If something were to ever happen to Tohru because of Kyo, he would never forgive Kyo. This is hinted at the fact that Yuki kept Kyo in check by slapping him when Tohru was told to mind her own business. And as Yuki is talking to Manabe, someone who reminds him of Kyo, he projects his thoughts at Kyo metaphorically.

If you like her that’s your business. And if she likes you back, that’s her business. But I don’t have any right to interfere. But, if you get close to her as some kind of joke or chase after her simply out of idle curiosity, then you’ll be making it my business. If you hurt her, I won’t forgive you. Ever. Do you understand? That’s something I could never forgive.

The impact of Tohru in Yuki’s life ultimately influenced and encouraged his bond with Manabe, Yuki’s second important relationship. Let’s take a look at their witty banter.

Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (17)

[Manabe and Yuki talking at the riverbed]
Manabe: Let’s say that did happen–that I turn out to be that kind of guy…Then what would you do?
Yuki: Then we wouldn’t be friends
Manabe: Not… friends?
Yuki: [realizes the error in his words,embarrassed, thinking to himself] Where did that lame threat come from?! I’m not some snotty little kid on the playground! I sound like an idiot! He’s gonna make fun of me, for sure! [out loud] Wait! That’s not what I meant!!
Manabe: [throwing a tantrum] What?! You can’t go around saying you won’t be friends with people! That’s totally crossing the line! Think about all we’d be missing. We haven’t even had the chance to discuss our taste in erotica?
Yuki: [shocked] Wha–.. That.. worked?

As silly as this moment was, it’s actually an important one. It’s been a long time coming for Yuki to find where he belongs socially outside of the Sohma family home. Ever since his childhood incident that caused Hatori to erase the memories of his friends, it has been very hard for him to find and create new bonds. However, by introducing Manabe into his life and by working with him, Yuki is able to start his friendship list with a new slate! Manabe’s presence marks how far along Yuki has come from his burdensome past, which plagued him with thoughts of never being needed or wanted by anyone. For Yuki, this field trip allows him to believe and experience the warmth of humanity he craved for so long (S1, Ep 12).

Yuki: I hope that when I look back on the person I am now, seeing him will make me smile. I wonder if I’ll ever feel that way… [Memories will] shine softly, inside of you… Add color and they will shine.

Other than that the highlights of this episode for me were:

  • Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (18)
  • Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (19)
  • Fruits Basket (2019) S2, Ep. 16-17 (20)

(Images from @Kitsunes97/fruitsbasket.fandom.com)

Lastly, why is Manabe intrigued about Tohru? He jokingly states hypothetically if he can ask Tohru out in this episode, which marks the second time of him asking about Tohru since their time together making rounds as Student Council Members (S2, Ep. 13). It seems that Manabe has an eye out for Tohru. But if it’s not for romantic pursuits, then what other reason can it be…?

More developments to come on the next review installment of Fruits Basket (2019) 🐭🍙🐱🐴

(Video) O DESFECHO DO PASSADO DA UOTANI!! | FRUITS BASKET (2019) EP.17

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