Fruits Basket: Volume Two: What Becomes of Snow?
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Includes episodes 7 12 Its once again time for the schools annual Cultural Festival, and Class 1-Ds rice ball stand is a success thanks in large part to Tohrus delicious home-made treats. But what should be a day of fun turns tense when the festival is visited by two unexpected guests Momiji and Hatori Sohma! Akito has sent them to the school to do some checking-up on Yuki and the others. The only question is, why? At Hatoris request (or rather, demand), Tohru pays a secret visit to the Sohma Estate. But when she arrives to find the sprawling compound practically deserted, not even the fun-loving Momiji can help to ease Tohrus nerves. Thanks to Yukis previous warning, Tohru fears the "important matters" Hatori wishes to discuss may include erasing her memory! The month of December is near its end, and Tohru and the Sohma boys are getting ready to greet the New Year. Tohru plans a grand holiday dinner, but in the midst of the preparations, she discovers she may only need a table for one. Yuki, Kyo, and Shigure will have to return to Sohma House for an exclusive Zodiac Banquetwhich means Tohru may have to spend New Years Eve alone. Winter Break is over and the third term has started at school, which can mean only one thing its time for the endurance run! Tohru, Yuki, and Kyo suit up for their annual physical fitness test, but when the starting pistol fires, they quickly find themselves running against more than just the clock. Yuki has a troublesome cold to deal with, and Kyo has a troublesome relative! "Black Haru" is on the scene! Its Valentines Day, a dangerous day for the Sohma boys, as girls from all over the school swarm to give them presents! Even Tohrus gotten some Valentines chocolates for Yuki and Kyo (and Shigure, and Momiji, and Hatori, and Hatsuharu ). But as Tohru soon discovers, these little chocolates could lead to some big headaches down the road, especially when she hears what Momiji is giving her in return! Momiji gives Tohru an amazing White Day present an all-expenses-paid trip to a hot spring! With Yuki and Kyo along for the ride, Tohru and Momiji travel in the comfort of a private chartered bus to the luxurious Sohma owned resort. Upon their arrival, Tohru meets the woman who will be her hostess for the day. And when she learns that this rather bizarre woman is also a Sohma, she cant help but wonder could this be another member of the zodiac?
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I also love the reversal of what seems to be a general theme in anime of the horde of girls going after a guy to a horde of guys going after a girl. I wish I was Toru! Yuki, Kyo, and Haku are yummy!
Seriously, though, Fruits Basket is about more than that. It's about valuing real friendship, and learning to love both yourself and other people. This dvd is great for any children old enough to shake off the few sexual connotations scattered throughout the series, as well as for adolescents and adults of all ages.
To make matters even more complex, "Fruits Basket, Volume 2: What Becomes of Snow?" introduces us to three new members of the Sohma family, as well as a look at how the mysterious Akito rules over them. But despite these darker moments, the series never strays too far from the warm-hearted comedy and appealing characters.
Our leads are all involved in the school's Cultural Festival, despite Yuki's distress at having to wear a dress. But then two new Sohmas turn up: bubbly rabbit Momiji, and the chilly Hatori, who tells Tohru to meet him at the Sohma main house -- alone. Despite Tohru's nervousness, she obeys -- and finds out the painful facts about Hatori's past, and the isolation felt by cursed Sohmas.
When New Year's rolls around, Tohru and her friends help Kyo and Yuki clean the house, while Shigure torments his hysterical editor Mii. They're expected back at the main Sohma house, but the boys are reluctant to leave Tohru alone. And a school endurance run is interrupted by Haru Sohma, who is determined to fight Kyo -- but their battle is interrupted when Yuki collapses.
Then Valentine's Day comes around. Tohru has chocolate for everyone (literally), Yuki is stalked by his fangirls, and Kagura is busily trying to feed Kyo a chocolate heart the size of his head. And a month later, Momiji repays Tohru's favour by giving her an extravagant gift -- a trip to a hot spring.
There are definitely some darker moments to "Volume 2: What Becomes of Snow?" Most of these come from Hatori's tragic past, and the revelation of just what a lonely, painful life many of the zodiac members lead. Even the younger ones like Haru aren't immune, since we see that he was often mocked for his animal's part in the old zodiac folktale.
But don't worry, the dark spots are surrounded by lots of heartwarming moments (Momiji's "foolish traveler" story) and goofy dialogue ("No means NO, woman!"). And there's loads of comedy, from Shigure tormented Mii by refusing to write the rest of his novel, to the shrieking hostess at the hot spring. ("AAAAAAAAA! I'm sorry, world! I apologize for this boy! I'm SORREEEEEE...").
I have to admit that the hot spring episode is a bit slow, since much of it involves eating and soaking. And singing. But it has some cute moments like Yuki laughing, and the crazed ping-pong game.
We also get to see some different sides of Tohru and her friends -- for instance, it's revealed that despite her cheery demeanor, Tohru is sometimes very lonely for her mother. Yuki continues trying to come out of his shell, while Kyo verrrrrry slowly tries to overcome his social awkwardness. The "plum on the back" scene ends up being adorable because of this.
And we get to meet some new Sohmas, particularly Haru and Hatori. Haru has a dual personality -- one placid and serene, one violent and lecherous -- and a tumultuous past with Yuki. And Hatori comes across as the most tragic figure thus far, convinced that he is doomed to loneliness, and haunted by what happened when he dared to love someone.
"Fruits Basket, Volume 2: What Becomes of Snow?" introduces us to some new Sohmas, and some dark secrets. But it also never lets up on the warm'n'fuzzy smiles.