Fruits Basket delivers yet more epilogue.
It seems such a petty complaint when I consider the dizzying emotional heights this final season of Fruits Basket has delivered, but realistically after episode 11, both 12 and 13 have felt kind of anti-climatic. Part of me almost wishes they’d just made episode 11 a forty-minute special and truncated the content of these final two episodes. Because waiting a week in between each one to just get more wrap up feels a little… well lame.
Binge watchers will have a definite advantage here because to be blunt, they can ride the emotional high from episode 11 and be swept through these final two episodes and left with that final happy smile of joy at a sickly sweet conclusion in which everyone gets a happily ever after. For seasonal viewers, Fruits Basket’s ending lacks any kind of meat and two weeks is a long time to trail out an ending of saccharine sweet smiles.
And you know, it doesn’t undermine my overall love of this anime. Three seasons of Fruits Basket and it has told a beautiful story and part of me is really happy that the characters are working toward their happy ending and we’re seeing what happens next. However as an episode to review my impressions of I’m left with the unmistakable feeling that pretty much nothing happened other than the slow demonstration that all the characters are moving on and making sure we know they got to happily ever after.
That doesn’t leave you with a lot to say and the few moments of comedy offered up by Hanajima really don’t give much to discuss either.
Though, this episode does make a point of touching base with all the key characters and couples and we see their reactions to Tohru leaving (with Kyo). There’s lots of sighs and wistfully staring off into a future and then there’s the plans they make for themselves.
Probably the one that made me happiest was seeing Hatori making plans to travel. He’s lived a longer time in the clutches of the family and had never really rebelled against it. Unlike Ayame and Shigure he stayed in the main estate and did what he was asked to do so seeing him planning to go somewhere and maybe have his own life for a change was actually a pretty touching moment in amongst a lot of similarly played out sequences in this episode.
While the future for many of the kids is ambiguous, they make it clear they are all moving on with their lives and relationships.
I will get to the full season review of Fruits Basket: The Final Season soon but really I think I need to binge watch the whole season. While week to week was fine, the emotional roller coaster makes it difficult to really be objective as a whole. I do know that Fruits Basket really did do something special and this final season has been a brilliant conclusion, even if the final episodes have felt like they are dragging just a little bit.
Images used for review from: Fruits Basket: The Final Season. Dir. Y Ibata. TMS Entertainment. 2021.
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6 thoughts on “Fruits Basket: The Final Season Episode 13 Impressions – The Long Epilogue of a Narrative Continued”
Hot take: the ending of Return of the King is good, actually. If anything, it could have been even longer had they not cut out a key chapter from the book. Tolkien was channeling ancient stories like Beowulf where the return journey is often just as important as everything that comes before (hence why The Hobbit’s subtitle is There And Back Again), but that context is often lost on modern audiences. Kids today don’t have the attention span to read a book that’s a thousand years old and like two thousand pages long, what gives?
I know this has nothing to do with Fruits Basket but I’m a Tolkien fanatic so thanks for listening to my nerd rant. Haha
I get what Tolkien was doing and why, I just know that I very much prefer stories just to end and leave some things for the audience just to imagine. I don’t think it is just kids who don’t have the attention span for it, though it probably isn’t an issue of lacking an attention span and more an issue of stylistic choice that once the climax has occurred and the main issues are resolved, a short bit of closure is fine but once it starts dragging…
Again, Fruits Basket probably didn’t overstay its welcome and in a binge session this would have been a fairy good wrap up. These final two episodes as a proportion of everything that built up to them aren’t that long. The problem I found as a weekly viewer is that after waiting a whole week for the next episode there just wasn’t much happening that it felt like it needed to be its own thing.
Then again, personal preference.
I think it was supposed to be gentle wrap-up episode rather than a crashing climax, which is par for the course for this series in my opinion. It is worse when a series “ends” and the final episode is an unrelated coda – that really undermines the impact of the story conclusion.
But we got some more Arisu and Saki so it’s all good! 😀
It is all good. When I rewatch this season I think these final 3 episodes will be better for binge watching.