Toradora – 06: Has Ami really fallen in love with Ryuuji?

I never lost respect for J.C. Staff ever since they did Shingetsutan Tsukihime and Honey and Clover. As with most studios, they have had their own failures and missteps with regard to quality anime, but two of their anime belong to my top three, and that must mean something. I almost forgot, however, with their releases of Zero no Tsukaima and Shakugan no Shana. The two are by no means bad anime series, but I don’t think they’re good, or at least in the possession of that lasting quality that series like Honey and Clover will possess in the years to come.

A broken beauty

A broken beauty

I never expected much with Toradora, and I still don’t. In fact, it wasn’t one of the anime series I had initially planned to follow this current season. I thought that it was just going to be another romantic comedy; while I do like romantic comedies, most releases this year have been mediocre to bad (and two were released by J.C. Staff themselves).

I believe this was my mistake with Kimikiss ~ pure rouge. I had high initial expectations when I started watching the series (it was, after all, directed by Kasai Kenichi, the same director of Honey and Clover), and while these expectations were met a lot of the time (the series is good), there were also times where I was disappointed with the series, especially in its latter episodes. The series was good, perhaps even very good, but it was by no means excellent, and that disappointed me.

When I started Toradora, however, I hated Taiga and her rude behavior. I hated how she imposed on a nice guy like Ryuuji, but I liked how it didn’t start with a lot of girls fawning on him: that was a plus, seeing that most romantic comedies with harem start with women fawning all over a spineless protagonist. My amusement evolved into a more engaged involvement, and it was the sixth episode which made me realize that whatever happens from now on I will probably think of Toradora as nothing less than good.

I invested a lot emotionally with the Code Geass series, and this was because I wanted something to happen that never did by the end of the series (in fact, the lead died and that led to me being in denial for almost a month). I didn’t think it was an elevated investment, however; R2 merely toyed with my feelings with its heaping amounts of tragedy, but there never was anything beyond me rooting for CC and Lelouch ending up together.

This is not the case, at least for me, with Toradora.

The sixth episode sincerely reminded me of the sixth episode of Honey and Clover, and that was a very good thing. While it wasn’t as emotional or as evocative as that episode (Yamada confessing to Mayama over and over in a state of desperate inebriation), the fact that there was a confession and subsequently a revelation with one of its central characters was a beauty to behold. The music, most especially, was perfectly composed for whatever happened in the latter part of the episode.

Of course, I still have some doubt as to whether Ami truly likes Ryuuji or is merely stringing him along because she despises Taiga. There is some visual evidence, however, that somewhat debunks the theory that Ami is simply stringing him along. First, Ryuuji already knows her true character and was the person who helped her get over her cowardice as regards an obsessed stalker. Second, Taiga and Ryuuji themselves deny a relationship beyond friendship, and it was reiterated in the episode once more. Third, what Ryuuji did for Ami was something I believe girls would fall in love in. To accept people despite their broken natures is something most of us have difficulty of doing; Ryuuji doing this selflessly with both Taiga and Ami, I believe, is something noble.

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12 Responses to “Toradora – 06: Has Ami really fallen in love with Ryuuji?”

  1. Ryan A Says:

    playerz lol. Well, you know Ami is so self-centered she is likely the “pleasure” seeker, but if she can do whatever she wants and piss Taiga off at the same time… I guess that’s her silly happiness.

  2. jp Says:

    Ami is curious, I have no idea of her motivations. Her multiple personalities don’t help matters either.

  3. ilifin Says:

    Ami’s an outsider. She’s looking in, and wanting to get some of the heat that the rest has. I won’t say too much on this trail of spoiling, but note that no matter how much you will want her to get places, she never will.

    I’m not sure how to take her character from the anime point of view yet. She can be already in love with the Ryuuji, and I really don’t think they made that scene in the anime in ep6 that detailed as they did without a reason behind it. She might just have fallen for him in that moment and realized it herself when she noticed how he served her that drink to heat her up, just as he pampers Taiga. She wasn’t being discriminated for being who she was, Ryuuji was just as nice to her as he is to Taiga. Maybe she already was convinced Taiga and Ryuuji were something, and then that moment it downed on her?

  4. zqube Says:

    I think Ami plays the role of the person who knows what’s going on. She will see or she does see who likes who and she will use that information for her own enjoyment.

    As a side note, Ami got much closer to Ryuuji than the anime showed. That whole scene is actually down-played compared to the original.

  5. lolikitsune Says:

    You say “broken beauty,” but what I see is a piece of slutty artwork reminiscent of Kanokon, or Kannon Maldini’s hat.

  6. Michael Says:

    lolikitsune:

    y u do dis

    zqube:

    Ah, I see. Thanks.

    ilifin:

    Likewise, thank you for the elucidation.

    jp:

    Yes, Ami is curious. But somehow I feel the novel-readers suggest otherwise. 🙂

    Ryan:

    Exactly.

  7. Kairu Ishimaru Says:

    I think so. If Ami fell inlove with Ryuuji, then that will be a good twist on the story. If Taiga hated Ami, then Ryuuji will start suspecting Taiga why is she angry and will say “Are you jealous!?” Then that begins another story. Just like the typical romance movies/animes/tv shows etc.

  8. lolikitsune Says:

    bcuz i <3 u

  9. Michael Says:

    Kairu Ishimaru:

    It really will. More importantly, though, it’s something quite novel despite everything. :/

    lolikitsune:

    I love you too. 🙂

  10. Ryan A Says:

    Mike, just a bit … http://randomc.animeblogger.net/2008/12/03/toradora-10/#comment-457840

  11. Michael Says:

    Ryan:

    D:

  12. qwert Says:

    I honestly don’t see any resemblance with this series or Honey and Clover. Yamada’s confession at the end of episode 6 was a really touching moment…..the scene in Toradora feels shallow and hardly has the same depth…..I feel the same way about the characters. I just don’t see it :/ These people feel like anime characters, while H&C characters felt like human beings.

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