Fruits Basket Anime Review (2019)

Fruits Basket (Japanese: フルーツバスケット Hepburn: Furūtsu Basuketto), sometimes abbreviated Furuba or Fruba (フルバ), is a Japanese shōjo manga series written and illustrated by Natsuki Takaya. It was serialized in the semi-monthly Japanese magazine Hana to Yume, published by Hakusensha, from 1998 to 2006. The series’ title comes from the name of a popular game played in Japanese elementary schools, which is alluded to in the series.


Fruits Basket tells the story of Tohru Honda, an orphan girl who, after meeting Yuki, Kyo, and Shigure Soma, learns that twelve members of the Soma family are possessed by the animals of the Chinese zodiac (十二支 Jūnishi) and are cursed to turn into their animal forms when they are weak, stressed, or when they are embraced by anyone of the opposite sex that is not possessed by a zodiacal spirit. As the series progresses, Tohru learns of the hardships and pain faced by the afflicted Somas, and through her own generous and loving nature, helps heal their emotional wounds. As she learns more about Yuki, Kyo, and the rest of the mysterious Soma family, Tohru also learns more about herself and how much others care for her.

The series was also adapted into a 26-episode anime series in 2001, directed by Akitaro Daichi. A new anime television series adaptation produced by TMS Entertainment and directed by Yoshihide Ibata premiered on April 2019, which will adapt the entire manga. The first season of the 2019 reboot was 25 episodes long. The second season will premiere in 2020.


When high school student Tohru Honda’s mother dies in a car crash, Tohru decides to live with her grandfather. Renovations on the house and unsupportive and unkind family members cause her to move out of her grandfather’s house temporarily and, since she has nowhere else to go, Tohru begins living in a tent and supporting herself. That is, until she finds a home in the least likely of places, inhabited by her popular classmate Yuki Sohma and his cousin Shigure. The first day Tohru moves into the Sohma house, an orange haired teenager crashes through the roof of her new bedroom and starts attacking Yuki. This newcomer is Kyo, Yuki and Shigure’s aggressively angry cousin. Once Kyo loses quickly to Yuki, he tries to fight him again. When he’s about to attack, Tohru tries to stop him, but slips on an article of clothing, making her fall onto Kyo’s back. When this happens, Tohru discovers something big about the Sohmas.

The Sohmas live with a curse. Twelve members of the family (not including Kyo, who is the cat) are possessed by spirits of the Chinese Zodiac and turn into their zodiac animal when they are weak, under stress, embarrassed, or when hugged by someone of the opposite sex.

Personal Thoughts

Fruits basket is a simple shoujo story and a remake of old version of Fruits Basket reanimated. But as we know their will be second season this time with new story in 2020. Earlier in old version it was left did not continue as we could have seen at first sight. Our main girl, Tohru Honda helps certain people affected by a curse that makes them transform temporarily into a cute animal of the zodiac when they hug someone of the opposite sex. What is the big deal you would say?

Yeah doesn’t mean much as a problem for me also when I started this anime. The beginning is what you expect from a typical shoujo show. A cute and simple girl flirting with handsome males that makes jealous others random female students at school. And she starts to live with them from the very first episode! In the first episodes, you could find that all is going well without any strong pressure and you will probably think: “Ah, another shoujo/slice of life anime without interest”.

You could’ve never been so wrong.

As the anime and the story advances, you will discover a very dark and mysterious story behind all the characters, and it doesn’t limit at the mains ones! That’s one of the strongest point of Fruits Basket (2019), the characters are really well written. Theirs backstory are roughs, deeps, unpleasant, frightening but also sometimes happy and they made them as they are today. All their interactions with the other members of the cast are coherent and really well thought taking into account their own experiences, traumas, etc… even if the spectator doesn’t know them yet.

From a certain point in the anime, the mysteries about the past lives of some characters start to be revealed. And it’s done in a magnificent way. Trust me when I say you will need more tissues than you usual jerking week routine. More seriously, the way this anime conveys the feeling is incredible and is on par with Violet Evergarden as an example. Those few episodes really hit the spectator because for some characters, all the pressure built during the anime releases suddenly as a flow of beautiful flashbacks, hidden memories and sickening past situations that explain a lot about how they are behaving today. Even for the characters that were not hinted to have a dark past, we do get some breathtaking moments that will stay on your mind for a while after.

I also must highlight that Tohru is one of the strongest characters I’ve seen in this genre of anime. Being able to put on the truest smile you’ve seen and being constantly a flurry ball of cheerfulness for everybody she met while staying reasonably true is something truly admirable if we consider what she has been through.

Enough about the characters, the music/sound in Fruits Baskets (2019) serves perfectly its role. Accentuating the emotional moments when it should and give a relaxing tone when the story goes on. And God I love the endings, they did a really good job, the songs are very emotional and remind us at the end of every episode the feels that went through during the last 24-min (If you saw episode 24, you know how powerful it can be haha). Moreover, they are meaningful both in their lyrics and in their visual.
F-yeah we could do a complete review on the second opening about how Tohru is giving hope and peace for all the characters as we see the cast bring down their umbrellas one by one while the rain stops and the luminous sunrays lightens up their faces.

For a remake, the animation of Fruits Basket (2019) is so worth it. Not much to say about it, it’s just beautiful. The sceneries are great, the movements are fluid and the expressions on the characters faces really feel authentic and is giving a lot to the spectator.

Overall Fruits Basket (2019) is close to a masterpiece of its genre. A story of love, friendship but mainly a story about life itself. The hard times that we all had once at least can be found and reflected in this anime. Thus, the spectator can easily relate to the various tragic event and it’s so well done that even if he didn’t encounter them in his life, they will still get through him. As Tohru brings peace and joy to the people she loves, Fruits Basket (2019) brings us tears of understanding and a very strong feeling of compassion that makes us want to take into our arms every single character of the show (and it’s not because we only want to pet them after!).

If you loves shoujo or you seek anime like Violet Evergarden with strong emotional moments with beautiful music and smooth animations, you should 100% go for it RIGHT NOW.

And if you are not particularly interested by shoujo nor slice of life anime, why not give it a try? You might be surprised by how moving an anime about simple things in life can be! and now I will highly recommended this to watch. And I will rate this 9/10.


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