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This series really knows how to hit hard when it gets serious. I was not expecting the true nature of Kyou’s trauma to go so far. That being said, I think this episode was a strong moment for Tohru, and it raised an interesting idea about the nature of unconditional love. As I mentioned last week, I’m glad that this was addressed before the first “season” of the series concluded. It does make me wonder just how much more of the story there is, since it feels like a lot has already been covered.
I like that Kazuma’s arrival in this episode is intended to force Kyou to change. I honestly wasn’t expecting Kyou to profess that he hates living with Tohru and Yuuki so much, but I think it plays well into the main theme of the episode. It focuses on Kyou’s tendency to cover his feelings up with hate, as has been pointed out in a previous episode with his hate for Yuuki.
I do remember the comments Kagura has made about Kyou’s true form, but I was definitely expecting a figurative interpretation of that statement. I didn’t realize that he had a literal form that he kept hidden from everyone. It goes to a more grotesque scenario than I’d expect from this show, but I think it’s used well in this episode.
I think the best part of this episode is that Tohru is actually disgusted with Kyou’s true form. She’s typically the girl who would cover things up with nice words, but she expresses genuine feelings of fear in reaction to this. It makes her feel less like a saint and more like a normal girl, which is what she needs, honestly.
I’d maybe argue that this goes a bit too far. I get that Kyou is lashing out, but keep it together, man.
This episode does a great job of placing emphasis on actions over words. Kyou’s mother showers him with love and encouragement, but her actions betrayed her true feelings of worry and fear. So while she appears supportive, she actually backs Kyou into a corner. We can see Kyou using a similar defense mechanism when he proclaims his hatred.
This behavior is something we’d expect to see from Tohru as well, given her self-sacrificing and supporting nature. Instead, she expresses her actual anxieties and accepts Kyou anyway. She’s basically saying that she cares about Kyou so much that she doesn’t care about countering fear. I think it’s sweet.