Fruits Basket, my favourite Shojo

Fruits basket is a manga created by Natsuki Takaya and published in the magazine Hana to Yume. This manga was published for the first time in 1998 and ended in 2006. The series has 23 volumes. Fruits basket became so popular that they made an Anime series of 26 episodes in 2001 and in 2015 they released a sequel: Fruits basket another. Undoubtedly, it is one of the best known manga in Japan and in the rest of the world. The Fruits Basket franchise became a great success due its charisma and attractive plot.

Fruits Basket is part of the Shōjo Manga. But what is a Shōjo manga? Shōjo literally means “Young Woman”. This type of Manga can speak both of historical and fanciful facts. However one of the most important elements of the Shōjo is that the stories focuses on the love relationships of the characters and their feelings. Shōjo is usually full of drama and love triangles. This type of stories is directed for a young female generation.

In this case, Fruits Basket is based on the story of a poor orphan girl. After the death of his mother, Tohru Honda moves with his grandfather, however it is not so pleasant. The girl decides to leave her home and live in the forest. One day, in the woods, she stumbles upon a very particular house. In it lives his classmate Yuki Sohma and his relatives Shigure and Kyo Sohma. What she does not know is that the Sohma family hides a secret. Each of the members has been cursed and, when in contact with a person of the opposite sex, becomes animals of the Chinese zodiac. Tohru Honda promises to help the Sohma family in exchange for being allowed to stay in the house. Upon learning of the peculiar situation of the family, Tohru is surprised but does not change at all the relationship she has with her friends.

Tohru is a girl who has been through very bad times. She is a sensitive girl who can not resist keeping her feelings. Tohru finds refuge in his new home and his new mission. However, this calm does not last long as she is trapped in a love triangle.

Throughout the series, she is confronted to choose between Yuki and Kyo Sohma. Both have mixed feelings towards our protagonist.

Yuki and Kyo are two completely opposite characters. That they are always fighting. Both have many disagreements, however there is one aspect in which they always coincide: protect Tohru. Yuki and Kyo feel the duty and the need to keep her close to them. However, each one has a different idea of ​​how they should provide protection. Yuki is more open with her feelings and feels that he protects her by being honest with her. Kyo, on the contrary, is more mysterious and avoids talking about what he can feel.

Given this dilemma, Tohru has to choose who is the most suitable person for her.

Definitely Fruit Baskets is a manga that you should not be missed!

Read More

Rosario to Vampire: a supernatural school comedy.

Rosario to Vampire is probably the manga that put Monster Girls in the mainstream but the manga was a lot more than just cute girls doing cute things. It had actual depth, stakes and action that the anime adaptation decided to completely gloss over.  Rosario to Vampire is a perfect example of the source material being better than the anime. Rather than following the manga, the anime decided to make the show a generic harem series but the manga had so much more going for it.

At heart, Rosario to Vampire is a supernatural school comedy that does take a turn to becoming an action comedy manga down the line but the sense of the school never seems to go away which is definitely a strong pint of the series. The story follows Tsukune Aono that ends up enrolling into a school for monsters because he didn’t manage to get grades good enough for any other school – maybe there’s a life lesson there somewhere. All monsters attend school in human form but if an actual human is found on the school grounds they will be executed immediately leaving our protagonist in a tight spot.

As Tsukune tries to keep his head down and get out his situation alive, he ends up running in with the most attractive girl on campus, Moka Akashiya that is a vampire with a split personality and falls headfirst in love. In order to deepen his relationship with Moka, Tsukune decides to give his new life at a monster school a shot without knowing about Moka’s bloodthirsty nature.

Throughout the saga, we get to meet fun characters which include the multiple other heroines of the series Kurono Kurumu, Shirayuki Mizore and Sendou Yukari each with their own unique personalities and motive to monopolize Tsukune. Each heroine is either a Western Apparition or a Japanese Youkai with traits of their lore etched into their characters which adds a bit of depth. Considering Rosario to Vampire is a series targeted towards the male demographic, there’s an abundance of fan service which coupled with the manga’s art really makes for an enjoyable read.

Overall, Rosario to Vampire is a great manga series with great art along with characters that grow throughout the series and is definitely worth a read for anyone who enjoyed the anime or just wants to read a fun comedy romance manga with a healthy dose of action.

Read More

Fairy Tail: the relationship between Grey and Juvia

I can say this without a doubt that the relationship between Gray and Juvia holds a special place in the hearts of many including my own. From the moment they met each other, they impacted each other’s life in a big way. After their encounter both the relationships and characters have gone through major changes.

Both the characters have suffered quite a bit over their lives. Juvia was orphaned for unknown reasons and then bullied on by the other kids at her orphanage due to her rain, which led her to becoming a more depressing character. On the other hand, Gray had lost his family and master to Deliora; haunted by the thought of not being able to protect his family and master caused him to become distant and cold. After their first meeting Gray made the rain that was the cause of Juvia’s loneliness go away and keeps it at bay, while Juvia has slowly but surely softened Gray’s heart.

In the beginning of the series, Juvia was shown to have “stalker like tendencies” like keeping an eye on him in the darkness of the night and making anyone female that approached Gray with even friendliness her rival in love. It was speculated that Juvia’s love for gray stemmed from her lonely childhood, but during the Tenroujima arc all such suspicions were decimated when her love for Gray was shown to be pure and strong enough to even leave her opponent aghast. Whereas, gray has continued his trend of casually ignoring or comically responding to all of Juvia’s approaches. Even in the more recent chapters Gray still gets annoyed and can be oddly cold to her. But Juvias love has only grown stronger for gray over the years, but thankfully the “stalker like tendencies” haven’t. But unfortunately, they have gained some personality tendencies of each other, like Juvia striping in battle and Gray making not so adorable faces at cute things.

The fact that the mangaka has the two fight alongside each other, side by side, holding hands and going as far as to perform Unison Raid’s is the very testament of the trust they place in one another. The moment they perform a Unison Raid is quite a big deal, as Its magic that brings together two hearts! This is a major feat not out done by any other unconfirmed pair in the series. This was referred as a “synchronized attack of love” by Mashima the mangaka himself. Another example would be the “Gray & Juvia Special Chapter” which did not have any relevance to the manga, but has Gray shown  to positively respond to Juvia’s affection, even though it was a day of mourning for him.

In conclusion Gray took Juvia’s rain away, and now Juvia is slowly but definitely melting the walls of ice around his heart. Through their differences, they help each other move forward together and that’s why Gruvia is one of the best pairings out there.

Read More

Fairy Tail: the relationship between Natsu and Lucy

The relationship between Natsu Dragneel and Lucy Heartfilia has been a topic of heated debate for the entire Fairy Tail fan base since the first chapter and episode was released.

A romantic sub plot between the two has been seen throughout the series on many occasions, likewise there have also been moments when fans of the pair have had their doubts on what’s to become of their favorite couple, mainly due to the constant teasing by Hiro Mashima the mangaka of Fairy Tail, which he makes a point to do so even on his twitter account.

The chemistry the mangaka has managed to establish between the two has left many to wonder if their favorite couple will end up together or ending up in solely a platonic relationship. The strength of their bond has been shown quite a few time throughout the series and is following the trend even now. In various situations Lucy and Natsu both have openly relied on one another, but rather taking it as a sign of affection it can also be stated as the strength of friendship and degree of trust which they have in one another; which happens to be a recurring theme in the series.  Though this degree of trust and friendship is without a doubt beyond of what’s normally shown to a guild member, but are not shown exclusively to one another by them. Throughout the series both Natsu and Lucy have shown strong relations of friendship and trust to some other close guild members like Gray Fullbuster, Erza Scarlet, Lisanna Strauss and Wendy Marvel. But even so Lcuy’s bond with Natsu is somewhat unique, which can only be compared to the bond Natsu shares with his oldest and possibly dearest friend “Happy the exceed”.

From the very start of the series Natsu and Lucy have been put together in many situations. The very first time they met each other was when Lucy was thinking of “how to join Fairy Tail” and was put under a love charm by Bora who was referring as to himself as the famous salamander of Fairy Tail, mean while Natsu was looking for his dragon parent Dragneel Salamander in the same vicinity. When Natsu interrupted their conversation to see if Bora was his dragon parent the charm on Lucy was broken, but yet all the other females surrounding Bora remained under the charms effect.  It was stated later on in the anime that that the charm can be broken by the intervention of the soul mate of the person under the charm, which led to more fuel being cast on the already heated debates of the fans.  Following this incident Natsu took her to Fairy Tail where she joined the guild.

The fact that he was the one responsible for inviting and bringing her to the guild carved a deep bond between the two of them. Which led to Natsu eventually deciding to form a team with her along with Happy. Natsu has been shown to deeply care about Lucy, from him uprooting a magic Sakura tree from Magnolia Town’s Blossom-viewing to threatening the life anyone who harmed her. They have also been hinted to have romantic feelings for each other in quite a few small slice of life arcs of the series but were mostly dropped or not mentioned afterwards.

Though hints about the pairs relationship degree are dropped and shared every now and then, but until Hiro Mashima is ready to unveil his true intentions for the future of the couple, it will remain as a topic of great debate for many if not all fans of the series.

Read More