Taiga: fire and brimstone await for your redemption

I didn’t start hating Toradora all of a sudden, and I probably never would (unless J.C. Staff does an absolutely odious ending). However, I did reflect on a quip that someone made on a forum. Since I wrote the reply with haste, I chose to rewrite it to better explain or deliver my opinion regarding the show. Toradora attempts to emulate reality; it is thus no surprise that people make mistakes in the series.

As what I currently do in forum replies, I state a caveat: indeed, I am quite fond of Ami; however, I am also not blaming anyone from the show for their actions. Yet let us analyze the mistakes that the main characters have committed in the span of the show.

Minori was, at first, the true airhead. Her head was often in the clouds, and her liveliness was only rivaled by her retardation at times. Of course something lies beneath the surface, but throughout most of the series (except in these latter episodes) she has been the life of the party. She started becoming emotional, however, when she finally detected that Ryuuji liked her; in fact, she was totally distracted by this that she manage to lose a softball game all by herself, almost destroy the Christmas tree of the class, and seethe with depression. I found this normal especially when placed vis-a-vis a situation akin to this in real life, and the only thing I found to blame in her was her (facade of) retardation at times to cope with reality, as otherwise, she is also a conflicted girl.

Ami was, at first, quite the two-faced bitch. She was difficult to love; her conceitedness was immense. Yet ever since Ryuuji helped her become aware that being herself was all right she continuously changed for the better. From initially a spoiled princess she has transformed herself to a truly caring person. What would be her faults, then? Would liking Ryuuji be one of them? I personally wouldn’t blame anyone when they would like a person such as Ryuuji. Even I like Ryuuji, and I’m a guy. How about her subtlety as regards her feelings? I personally think it would be more offensive to a man to be offensively obvious about one’s feelings. Her subtlety is her coping mechanism: practically speaking her only fault was that she was late to the nucleus of the friendship and so is forcibly relegated to a status that is sequestered in just friendship. For all her teases of Ryuuji she always tried to help him and she always respected him: she even picked him up when he was down at times.

I agree. Taiga did a few things for Ryuuji. She saved Ryuuji from drowning and did other things with panache that aided Ryuuji. HOWEVER, Taiga also did a significant number of evil things to Ryuuji. She still curses and insults Ryuuji consistently. She batters and harms him at times, and I’m pretty sure that hasn’t stopped as yet. Despite all this, however, Ryuuji stuck with Taiga. He cared for her deeply enough to be there and to cheer her towards Kitamura.

How did she thank him?

She thanked him by continuing to abuse him by both words and deeds. I’m sure it may seem comical and jocose for some, but it’s no fun to be constantly battered and called ‘idiot dog.’ Taiga was lucky that Ryuuji was an extremely patient, tolerant, and kind guy. Lesser men would have raped her or battered her in return or simply left; she was simply extremely lucky that he was very nice. A few disparate and isolated incidents cannot efface her constant abuse of him. If he ever chose Minori, and if he ever ends up with her, she can blame no one but herself. One who found what he purported to be mud selling mud to another who found it was truly a diamond cannot blame the other for buying the mud. The blame remains on the seller.

Ryuuji did everything he could to help Taiga. How did Taiga repay that?

I ask one that. I blame that mere coincidence, but that happenstance destroyed a relationship Taiga herself knew was going to work and be successful. Minori likes Ryuuji, and Ryuuji clearly loves Minori. [I don’t blame Taiga.]

Even if she was going to be alone, however, she fully deserves her solitude with her utter disrespect towards Ryuuji. I’m sure that while people would argue that the words don’t mean anything, the fact that they were spoken by her means something. Words may compose only 7% of verbal communication but one cannot disregard their power. If she didn’t mean that, she shouldn’t have said those denigrating words. She fully deserves her solitude, and a few isolated occurrences of kindness cannot change that. In addition to that, Ryuuji would never ignore Taiga. He’ll always treat her as a friend, because that’s how kind he is as a person. He’ll never leave her (as a friend).

That is why before I’m fully convinced of the Taiga and Ryuuji end (as it will most certainly happen), Taiga must first pass through the eye of the needle in a burning haystack; otherwise I wouldn’t be convinced. Toradora isn’t a fairy-tale anime; faults aren’t erased as if they were mere motes of dust in paper. They must be redeemed. As it stands, Ami and Minori are clearly better ‘people’ than Taiga: for one they respect him fully. It will only be through her transcendent behavior that she can redeem herself, and I hope I’ll see this in the near future.

She must first feel the suffering she imposed on Ryuuji and realize the hurt she spread. When Taiga realizes the gravity of her past actions and changes for the better as she recognizes her faults will the relationship be not one merely of dependence but of true love. I await this happening. Redeem yourself, Taiga.

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31 Responses to “Taiga: fire and brimstone await for your redemption”

  1. pixie Says:

    your site is so gay, mike. i wish there’s a little bang bang bang in here. 😀

  2. MeoTwister5 Says:

    I was interested in your posts in the Animesuki episode 19 thread and posted a reply to it since… uh it’ll be too long to post here lol.

  3. Michael Says:

    Is that you, Koia Jorge?

  4. Bocom Says:

    You wanted an example of novel versions of some scenes, so I will give you an example here, since I find it to be pretty fitting. 😉

    http://bocom.mine.nu/blog/?p=212

  5. Michael Says:

    Woah.

    Woah.

    BRING THAT ON. BRING THAT ON.

    pixie:

    *blushes* :3

  6. IcyStorm Says:

    I don’t think the “hurt” Taiga has done (other than totally fucking over the possible Ryuuji x Minori relationship, but that was unintentional) really matters because Ryuuji is still by her. He still really cares for her, and he knows that she cares for him too. If Ryuuji was actually hurt by Taiga’s actions and words (like calling him a “baka inu”), then he would’ve left her side a long time ago.

  7. Turambar Says:

    If you want moments of Redemption from Taiga, I think her own recognition of her helplessness in supporting others is a nice one. I’m talking about the Kitamura arc of course when she realizes she lacks any ability to ease his tears, and pulls at Ryujii to go to him instead.

    On the subject of how Taiga treats Ryujii, I think Ryujii himself has realized that any of her “cruelty” is not the result of any sort of malice. I forget what episode it was when Yaachan said this but she mentioned that if Taiga truely disliked Ryujii to any degree, she would never eat the food he cooked. The reasons for her acting like a needy child is because that simply is the dynamic of her relationship with Ryujii, one of guardian and child, and both has come to accept that.

  8. braker Says:

    Batters and harms? I can’t even remember the last time she did any of that and even in the novels, the actual degree of violence is described as the level that can get brushed off as a joke and nothing that really does hurt.

    Also, you are gravely misreading a lot of the Minori scenes with too much of a shipping perspective.

  9. Jay.nichuan Says:

    I agree with the last 3 comments,

    Everything Taiga says to Ryuuji is in jest, she doesn’t really mean any of the ‘mean’ things she says, and clearly Ryuuji doesn’t see it as Taiga disliking him or whatever. Everything she’s been saying to Ryuuji is the opposite of what she’s feeling, although its taken a while for her to realize that. (she probably didn’t want to realize it, I think you mentioned something about the taboo factor of loving someone while you should be committed to another relationship)

    I mean I call my brother fatty every time I see him, but I mean it in an affectionate way. I call my best friends fags, and my brothers name has practically become fatty or fatboy thanks to me :3 but he doesn’t mind. (I hope not LOL) nah he doesn’t mind 😛

    Just refer to the (ending song of season 1?) ‘Vanilla Salt’. The lyrics refer to the conflicting nature between ones words and their true feelings: short extract as follows,

    If I’m told it’s white
    I’d say it’s black
    I can’t be honest
    I say one thing but do another
    If I’m told, “I love you”
    I’d say, “I hate you”
    I’m happy, but what am I saying?

    Like putting salt
    Into sweet vanilla…

    I suppose it might seem pretty insensitive but there’s no evil intention and Ryuuji realizes that. (omg it bugs me how the little-red-squiggly-line appears every time I type ‘realise’ D:)

  10. Keio Says:

    What’s a few jabs between close friends? 🙂 Oh and Ryuuji isn’t the goody-two-shoes depicted on the show as well. He also likes to smack others asses when kidding around. He even smacked Taiga’s a few times before (of course, not shown in the anime).

  11. Michael Says:

    IcyStorm:

    Point taken.

    Turambar:

    I’m actually waiting. I feel that her moment of revelatory redemptiveness is in the air, and it would quite convince me to rally over to her side. I’d argue though, that simply because it’s a cruelty without malice doesn’t mean it’s not cruelty because it still is.

    Meo-senpai correctly stated Taiga’s treatment of Ryuuji as a vestige of her treatment toward her father. It’s a very rational opinion, and one I’m wont to agree with. My argument, though, is that were the story simply to stagnate with this being the final revelation of Taiga, it would really fall flat in the end especially when Taiga ends up with Ryuuji.

    braker:

    I’m shipping!? Huzzah!

    Simply because I disagree doesn’t mean I’m shipping for Minori. Besides, I like Ami, remember? Yet I full well know the futility of her advances and have already accepted it. What I desire is for Taiga to prove her worth to me, as a viewer, because as of now, she still hasn’t. I verily doubt that could be considered shipping. As early as episode 13 I was already open to any ending of the show. I favor Ami, of course, but that doesn’t mean I can’t look at some aspects of Toradora with a critical eye.

    Jay:

    Hahaha. It’s weird because the spell-checker doesn’t recognize alternate spellings of a correct word. Still, cruelty without malice is still cruelty.

    Keio:

    My close friends never call me ‘idiot dog!’ Do your close friends call you that? 😉

    That was an aspect I wished I saw. I mean, seriously.

  12. braker Says:

    >>She started becoming emotional, however, when she finally detected that Ryuuji liked her; in fact, she was totally distracted by this that she manage to lose a softball game all by herself, almost destroy the Christmas tree of the class, and seethe with depression.

    No, she had a good idea that Ryuuji was attracted to her at the villa arc, but she started become unstable when Ami, with harmful intent, sarcastically asked her if “her guilt was gone”. It wasn’t Ryuuji liking her that was the problem, it was that she started realizing the gravity of what she might be stepping into and that it was the same exact thing she criticized Taiga’s father of (this part sadly didn’t become emphasized in the anime).

    >> For all her teases of Ryuuji she always tried to help him and she always respected him: she even picked him up when he was down at times.

    Yes, yes, and she also butted in the wrong way (she is the whole cause of the Emorin mess – and the reason she did it was jealousy, plain and simple) and has also caused some level of physical abuse to Ryuuji (all the women have) in the novels. She is also going to cause more problems.

    Also:
    >> she even picked him up when he was down at times.
    Taiga has done the exact same thing.

    >>How did she thank him?

    Companionship/emotional support, a life beyond just his mother and/or being feared by the people around him, the beginnings of a relationship with Minori (which didn’t flourish, but the fact is Ryuuji would never have started moving towards Minori without Taiga’s support).

    >> HOWEVER, Taiga also did a significant number of evil things to Ryuuji. She still curses and insults Ryuuji consistently. She batters and harms him at times, and I’m pretty sure that hasn’t stopped as yet.

    If you take them as curses and insults with the intention to harm, then yes. If you brush it off as being the typical squabble within a family, then no. It’s not real, it’s play, and both Ryuuji and Taiga have always interpreted it as such. They already know enough about each other to avoid saying the stuff that really hurts, because their relationship isn’t typical; which is also the major problem.

    >> I ask one that. I blame that mere coincidence, but that happenstance destroyed a relationship Taiga herself knew was going to work and be successful. Minori likes Ryuuji, and Ryuuji clearly loves Minori. [I don’t blame Taiga.]

    Was it going to be successful? The guilt jibe from Ami made her more conscious to the messed up relationship between Ryuuji, herself, and Taiga, to the point of having her directly go to Taiga’s mansion to get to the bottom of this, and it was certainly, not by coincidence.

    Ryuuji ditched the opportunity to wait for Minori at the party to run back to Taiga in a Santa suit. You can say that’s just because Ryuuji’s nice, but it’s clearly abnormal and looks even stranger in the anime with his internal dialogue gone. How could a relationship work between Minori and Ryuuji if Ryuuji kept pulling stunts like that? If she accepted Ryuuji’s proposal, that itself would have led to a Nice Boat ending, because she would keep looking at Taiga and so would Ryuuji.

    If you’re going to blame Taiga, you might as well blame Ryuuji (and Ami) too. At least Taiga was purposefully keeping her distance to avoid having her emotions explode like that.

    >> She must first feel the suffering she imposed on Ryuuji and realize the hurt she spread. When Taiga realizes the gravity of her past actions and changes for the better as she recognizes her faults will the relationship be not one merely of dependence but of true love. I await this happening. Redeem yourself, Taiga.

    If you even think she won’t feel the suffering she imposed on Ryuuji based on how we’ve seen her character up until now (and especially during the Kitamura arc when she cried for the guy), what character have you been watching?

  13. Honoo Says:

    While Taiga awakens from her Kitamura delusions and realizes Ryuuji is her *true* happiness and starts crying, all I did was…

    … contemplate something in the lines of “now that you realized that, go and ‘finish him off’ already.”

    At the same time, I let out a mean chuckle. (No matter how tearjerking it’s supposed to be I still choose to laugh.)

  14. Son Gohan Says:

    @braker:
    I don’t understand why everyone should give up their happiness for Taiga’s!
    Why should Minori feel “guilty” of liking the same guy that Taiga likes? Love is irrational! Why should she give up on her love for Taiga’s sake? That’s what irritates me of this show.

  15. Michael Says:

    >Yes, yes, and she also butted in the wrong way (she is the whole cause of the Emorin mess – and the reason she did it was jealousy, plain and simple) and has also caused some level of physical abuse to Ryuuji (all the women have) in the novels. She is also going to cause more problems.

    We’re talking about the anime series here. I care little for the novels until I finish watching the show.

    >Companionship/emotional support, a life beyond just his mother and/or being feared by the people around him, the beginnings of a relationship with Minori (which didn’t flourish, but the fact is Ryuuji would never have started moving towards Minori without Taiga’s support).

    Surely these weren’t offered by the other girls, right?

    >but it’s clearly abnormal [to me.]

    You forgot to add that one little thing there.

    >How could a relationship work between Minori and Ryuuji if Ryuuji kept pulling stunts like that?

    How could a relationship work between Minori and Ryuuji if Taiga kept pulling stunts like that?

    >If you even think she won’t feel the suffering she imposed on Ryuuji based on how we’ve seen her character up until now (and especially during the Kitamura arc when she cried for the guy), what character have you been watching?

    I’m waiting. That’s practically the point of this post.

  16. Michael Says:

    Honoo:

    I cried. I pitied her. But something within me was saying ‘serves you right.’

    Son Gohan:

    I also have my qualms regarding this. That’s why I seek for Taiga to redeem herself – to pass through that eye of the needle in a burning haystack – before I will rally to her side.

  17. braker Says:

    >> Surely these weren’t offered by the other girls, right?

    They are a factor, but do you really think they’re even close? The comparative degree of companionship/emotional support even in the anime is greater between the two, thanks to all the cut scenes. Ryuuji’s own growing connection to Minori began thanks to Taiga bragging about Ryuuji in private; and even this part is in the anime. Ryuuji being able to take the next step in having a real relationship with Minori went forward because Taiga started telling him to move, even when he was content with doing nothing.

    As for life outside of mother: Taiga not being there would have meant it would have taken time for Ryuuji to adjust in the class. Ami wouldn’t have even been interested in Ryuuji if it wasn’t for Taiga in the first place. The [fun] farce at the pool wouldn’t have happened, the villa trip/scare-fest would never have happened, there would have been no reason for Ryuuji to run like a madman at the marathon race, Ryuuji wouldn’t have the courage to run for student president to cheer up Kitamura by himself, etc.

    Things could have turned out differently and maybe better without Taiga around, but the major propellant for all these adventures had been Taiga. Ryuuji, as Ami said, has a “moon” personality. He’s not the type that engages in events actively.

    >but it’s clearly abnormal [to me.]
    >> You forgot to add that one little thing there.

    Don’t you think, it would have made MUCH MORE SENSE to send Kitamura? Why didn’t he? Why does he himself have to go? Why not go with Minori after she comes over? He should have heard Ami mentioning that Taiga left to bring Minori along.

    > How could a relationship work between Minori and Ryuuji if Taiga kept pulling stunts like that?

    It’s an emotional reaction that was caused by Ryuuji coming over. That’s what broke her. You can’t dismiss him from the equation when she had been purposefully keeping her distance from him and Ami warned him against going. Or what, you would have been happy with her just sitting there and doing nothing?

    >If you even think she won’t feel the suffering she imposed on Ryuuji based on how we’ve seen her character up until now (and especially during the Kitamura arc when she cried for the guy), what character have you been watching?

    >> I’m waiting. That’s practically the point of this post.

    I don’t really agree with the notion of a heroine “deserving” someone just because they suffered a lot or are going to suffer, but she’s already been rolling with the punches her whole life and she already was prepared to roll with the punches again after she bawled herself out on the streets.

    Judging from the title of this blog entry, I don’t think you’d settle for anything short of gang-rape, but that’s just my impression.

  18. braker Says:

    @braker:
    don’t understand why everyone should give up their happiness for Taiga’s!
    Why should Minori feel “guilty” of liking the same guy that Taiga likes? Love is irrational! Why should she give up on her love for Taiga’s sake? That’s what irritates me of this show.

    I’m not saying Minori should feel guilty or even suggesting that people should give up their happiness for Taiga. I’m saying, what Ami said about “whether her guilt was gone or not” was what caused the whole mess. I would have been fine if Minori gave the go sign, but that’s not what happened.

    Also, who are people to decide what “happiness” is for these people? That’s ridiculous. They’re still kids in their second year of highschool.

  19. Michael Says:

    Then, yes, they were a factor. That’s the simple answer to the simple question. Nothing more, nothing less.

    >Don’t you think, it would have made MUCH MORE SENSE to send Kitamura? Why didn’t he? Why does he himself have to go? Why not go with Minori after she comes over? He should have heard Ami mentioning that Taiga left to bring Minori along.

    It truly makes more sense to send the man who broke Taiga’s heart. I mean, it’s not enough that he loves Sumire, isn’t it? Why not add fuel to the flame why we’re at it!? It’s so sensible!

    >You can’t dismiss him from the equation when she had been purposefully keeping her distance from him and Ami warned him against going. Or what, you would have been happy with her just sitting there and doing nothing?

    On the same note, it’s practically what he was. He went because he wanted to make Taiga happy in remuneration for her efforts. If my friend did that for me, the least I’d try to do is also to try and make him or her happy. The question still stands, though.

    How could a relationship work between Minori and Ryuuji if Taiga kept pulling stunts like that?

    >I don’t really agree with the notion of a heroine “deserving” someone just because they suffered a lot or are going to suffer, but she’s already been rolling with the punches her whole life and she already was prepared to roll with the punches again after she bawled herself out on the streets.

    Judging from the title of this blog entry, I don’t think you’d settle for anything short of gang-rape, but that’s just my impression.

    We agree to disagree, then. But gang-rape, that’s horrible! :3

  20. woahlzxh Says:

    let taiga redeem herself. whether she deserves it or not for ending up at this stage doesnt matter already.

    let dear mirorin find peace. woe is this anime without her smile ):

    let ami bloom even more.she shines, and i want her to shine even more with the remaining time.

    & let that silly but lovable of a blur cock that is ryuuji to just stay who he is.

    come, what may. (:

  21. braker Says:

    >> It truly makes more sense to send the man who broke Taiga’s heart. I mean, it’s not enough that he loves Sumire, isn’t it? Why not add fuel to the flame why we’re at it!? It’s so sensible!

    The two were getting along just fine at the family restaraunt and when they were making the tree. Taiga was still blushing, Kitamura’s indebted to her, and he’s still under the impression she likes Kitamur, or did you get the impression that Ryuuji thought she fell out of love with the guy? She had absolutely no rivals left except for Kihara, so why not?

    Ryuuji didn’t even intend to let her know it was him. It would have been good enough if Kitamura just stayed in the bear costume had he went.

    Why does HE and HE alone have to be the one to save Taiga?

    >>On the same note, it’s practically what he was. He went because he wanted to make Taiga happy in remuneration for her efforts. If my friend did that for me, the least I’d try to do is also to try and make him or her happy.

    You don’t think that’s what Taiga wanted to do and still wants to do?

    >>The question still stands, though. How could a relationship work between Minori and Ryuuji if Taiga kept pulling stunts like that?

    Again, Ryuuji is automatically predisposed and extremely reactive to anything that happens to Taiga, even if she isn’t asking for or wanting help. If Minori didn’t see her cry but saw Ryuuji going in and out of the apartment, what do you think she would think?

    The father/daughter analogy isn’t a one-way relationship between Ryuuji and Taiga. And Ryuuji, in his own way, is also a broken person.

    >>We agree to disagree, then. But gang-rape, that’s horrible! :3

    I don’t mind disagreement, but this is ridiculous. What have you been watching?

  22. Bocom Says:

    Compare the novel version of this scene with the anime version.

    A lot from the novel is lost when transferred over to the anime, because some things are changed and some things, like most inner dialogue, is cut from the show.

    The feelings of anime-Taiga isn’t portrayed in the same way as novel-Taiga’s feeling, unfortunately for the worse. I mean, it does give people the wrong impressions, and concludes that the anime and novel is too different to be acknowledged as being the same thing. This seems kinda unfair, since anime-Taiga doesn’t seem to contemplate on the matter in the same way that novel-Taiga does. This leads to anime-Taiga looking like she’s more selfish than she really is, and that is truly a shame.

  23. Michael Says:

    woahzxlh:

    This is what I’m waiting for. Really.

    Bocom:

    This is one of my gripes. I think I wouldn’t even think about these reflections had the anime better explained stuff. As it is, however, it’s still very well made.

    When I read that excerpt, I … I felt for Taiga. So badly. I wished the anime would reach this point and at last convince me that Taiga transcends even her fire and brimstone and redeem herself in the best way possible. I can’t wait! 🙂

    braker:

    >The two were getting along just fine at the family restaraunt and when they were making the tree. Taiga was still blushing, Kitamura’s indebted to her, and he’s still under the impression she likes Kitamur, or did you get the impression that Ryuuji thought she fell out of love with the guy? She had absolutely no rivals left except for Kihara, so why not?

    Ryuuji didn’t even intend to let her know it was him. It would have been good enough if Kitamura just stayed in the bear costume had he went.

    Why does HE and HE alone have to be the one to save Taiga?

    Kitamura wears only suspenders, and thinks he’s hot and cute. Yeah, I sure would like him to go to Taiga’s house to understand her! I mean, he’s SURELY the epitome of psychological stability! The God of Broken Hearts! Truly a capital suggestion.

    >You don’t think that’s what Taiga wanted to do and still wants to do?

    I’ll see about that. I hope she’s going to continue to try and make her happy even if she suffers and hurts inside immensely. Then I will slowly understand the nobility of her love and then maybe rally with her.

    >I don’t mind disagreement, but this is ridiculous. What have you been watching?

    I’ve been watching Toradora! Surely there more than one way to look at things.

  24. braker Says:

    >>Kitamura wears only suspenders, and thinks he’s hot and cute. Yeah, I sure would like him to go to Taiga’s house to understand her! I mean, he’s SURELY the epitome of psychological stability! The God of Broken Hearts! Truly a capital suggestion.

    You think he’s not psychologically stable? That’s his party-mode personality. He can be calm and sensitive.

    >>I’ve been watching Toradora! Surely there more than one way to look at things.
    This kind of one-sided Taiga bashing for this episode is abnormal. Maybe you’re looking too much at a result taken out of context instead of a process?

  25. Michael Says:

    It doesn’t really matter what I think, does it. My article wasn’t unfounded. While her disrespect may not be born out of malice, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s still disrespect. I’m looking towards the results, and I’m hoping those will be well-construed and constructed. I don’t take her disrespect out of context: it’s there, and I choose not to ignore it. She must do something more to pull me to her side, because, if the buck stops here, it’s going to be really disappointing.

    With that, I bid you good night! 🙂

  26. Keio Says:

    @Michael

    Not “idiot dog” really. But we casually call each other “hoy gago”, “tanga” or “tang inang to”. I even call some of my close girl friends (notice the space) like that. :))

  27. Michael Says:

    Keio:

    Somehow, the disrespect grated on me. The next episode will come soon, anyway, so it’s not that long of a wait.

  28. Keio Says:

    I understand your point. Disrespect is still subject to a person’s view. Some people are just more tolerant than most. Can’t wait for the next episode. I’m in the dark on what’s going to happen, since B-T hasn’t translated volume 8 yet. Till your next blog. 🙂

  29. Jay.nichuan Says:

    >While her disrespect may not be born out of malice, it doesn’t change the fact that it’s still disrespect. I’m looking towards the results, and I’m hoping those will be well-construed and constructed. I don’t take her disrespect out of context: it’s there, and I choose not to ignore it.

    Well I might be getting a bit off topic :3, but I reckon that its not really cruelty if Ryuuji doesn’t feel any (lasting :P) pain or suffering from Taiga. The occasional whack doesn’t count.

    Personally I reckon its this occasional ‘closeness’ and bantering that brings people closer. I mean, just like Ami says to Ryuuji “you could never hit Minorin right? Idolization isn’t going to bring you closer” (chances are, not the exact words but you get my point ^^) It’s got to do with that equal-footing thing.
    Thats why I believe Ryuuji is closer to Taiga, and even Ami as opposed to Minorin, even if he has a romantic interest only for her.

    OH oh! and about the “idiot dog” thing, I have 3 incredibly close friends, two are Asian, and one is Curry. Respectively we call them baka-neko (stupid cat: originates from Fruits Basket), 4 year old/ shorty (he was born on the leap year haha) and nigglet/nigger. ^^ And we exploit every possible opportunity to poke the crap out of each other :P. Even so we are the best of friends. If we couldn’t do something like this to each other, our relationship would be a lot more distant.
    So basically I wouldn’t call Taiga’s actions/words cruel. Nor would I call me and my friends words/ actions cruel. Even if we do inflict some physical pain.. and suffering :P. (Btw they call me fag :P)

    Neither do we take these words/ actions as any form of disrespect. When things get serious, it becomes clear that we have great respect for each other. I wouldn’t be exaggerating when I say, there is absolutely nobody I respect more than those 3 friends of mine. Relating this to Toradora, in the occasional emotional scenes, Taiga does realise when she does something mean, and has apologized to Ryuuji for what she has done or said.

    The only true suffering that Ryuuji gets from Taiga is when she is upset. He’s one of the nice guys that cant possibly be happy when someone close to him is unhappy.


    Q. Would you prefer a partner, or even a friend, that is:
    1. always ‘respectful’ and idolizes you, and never dares to say or do anything that could be observed as hurtful, or
    2. would you prefer one that is more carefree and … how to put it.. slap happy? ^^

    ps. O: this has been a really popular post for discussion

  30. Michael Says:

    Point taken, Jay.

    Oh I can’t wait for the next episode!

  31. TomTom Says:

    The way I see it is that Taiga already reflected on her actions by making Minori go to the party, even when she had probably already come to terms with her emotions, atleast on some level.

    The whole scene where she (Taiga) sits on the chair, thinking about how it wasn’t enough for her to be kind only during Christmas, and how Santa or in this case, Ryuuji, isn’t coming.

    Ryuuji does come, though, but she practically forces him to go and meet Minori. Only after Ryuuji has left does Taiga fully realize her own feelings.

    It’s rather vague interpretation, I know.

    Anyway, in my eyes, Taiga doesn’t need to redeem herself. Sure, she’s called Ryuuji names and hit him, but he never seemed like he’d been hurt.

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