Toradora! 11

とらドラ!Episode 11

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Returning to school, it is time to prepare for the school cultural festival, which Haruta is excited about and the student council plan to make a great one. During P.E., the boys watch the girls play basketball, which includes a customary fight between Ami and Taiga. Afterward in that locker room, Haruta is on the festival committee and states that he’d like to do a maid cafe to get the girls into maid costumes. The guys are generally OK with that, but one of the guys would rather see the girls in Chinese dresses. Ryuuji is down with that, thinking of seeing Minori in such a dress but when he imagines Taiga in one, he changes his mind. That leads to a breakdown with everyone wanting different costume, leading Yuusaku to suggest a cosplay cafe. The guys agree.

Before the next class, an irritated Taiga hands her school sweatpants to Ryuuji to fix, blaming everything on Ami. Ami protests this loudly before they enter the classroom. That night, Ryuuji is working on sewing up Taiga’s sweatpants while Taiga waits when her phone goes off and she refuses to answer it. Ryuuji is a bit annoyed with this, but Taiga is more annoyed with being pestered, revealing that it is her “excrement old man” — her father. She doesn’t want to talk to the man who remarried and basically kicked her out. Ryuuji is uncomfortable with Taiga continuing to address her father as “crap.”

The next day at school, Haruta proposes that Ami be their representative for the school’s Miss Ohashi contest. She declines since she’s already the MC, so she picks Taiga. Taiga is angry by this, but when the class considers her fame throughout the school, the pick her anyway. Next is the picking of the class event, so one of the boys quickly suggests a cosplay cafe. The girls aren’t thrilled with this and Minori tries to get herself to suggest a haunted house. When Yuri-sensei throws cold water with her cynicism, Haruta proposes a vote. The guys are happy with this since there are more of them and all the guys will vote for a cosplay cafe. Unfortunately, Haruta decides it will be a lottery, not a vote, and to the horror of the guys, the event chosen is a pro-wrestling type match.

After school, Ryuuji is with Taiga as she stops at an ATM machine, only to discover her bank account has been emptied. She knows it is her father’s doing for ignoring his calls. On cue, her father calls and she still won’t answer. When Ryuuji suggests she talk it over with her father, Ryuuji finds himself sent to meet Taiga’s father instead. Taiga’s father is disappointed that his daughter won’t see him but understands, explaining the situation to Ryuuji and saying that he’ll soon be divorcing his 2nd wife. Thus he wants to live with Taiga. He hands Ryuuji a large packet of money to give to Taiga and insists on eating something with Ryuuji at the restaurant they are currently at.

Ryuuji comes home and Taiga is doing the dishes as payment for sending Ryuuji in her stead. Ryuuji isn’t happy with the way she’s washing dishes, but Taiga doesn’t want to hear about it. When Ryuuji tries to explain how much Taiga’s father wants to see her, she really doesn’t want to hear that and leaves, returning to her own apartment.

The next day at school, the class look over Haruta’s script and approve of what they see. It has Ami as the chief good guy wrestler and Taiga as the main villain with her Yankee underling, Ryuuji. Ryuuji objects to this as does Taiga. Since Taiga is worked up over this, Ami decides to quote one of her lines from the script, setting Taiga off. This causes the class to believe that Taiga is only play-acting, not serious. Yuusaku interrupts their wrestling with an announcement that all classes will be in competition and cites a list of prizes for the winning class. Everyone is now very excited to put on this wrestling production.

Ryuuji and Taiga walk home after school only to encounter Taiga’s father, who’s been waiting for Taiga. Taiga greets her father by kicking him in the balls and calling him a stalker before storming off to try to find refuge in Ryuuji’s apartment. Ryuuji is angry with the way Taiga is treating her father causing Taiga to get upset, feeling Ryuuji is taking her father’s side. He gets more angry, tells her he’s always on her side and lets it slip out that his father will never be there for him no matter how much he wants it. Realizing his slip up, Ryuuji immediately shuts up but Taiga now understands Ryuuji’s anger. Caressing and pinching Ryuuji on the cheek, Taiga agrees to speak with her father and so does.

Thoughts/Review:

I really can see why people like this anime both as a romantic comedy but also as something that gets poignant without really getting too angst-ridden. Ryuuji never talks about his dead father nor about his slutty, drunken mother, yet clearly the impact to him is greater than expected. His adaptation by being the opposite of his mother (hard worker who loves to cook and clean) is understandable and while he’s never liked his mother comparing his face to his father’s, his words to Taiga made it clear that he misses the father he never knew. While that’s certainly understandable, it was not something that I expected to come out in the anime.

For some reason, the anime decided to have Ryuuji get a little flustered over Minori for some reason. At this point, that seems a bit of a stretch to me. Why? Because they’ve already done quite a lot together, though mostly as part of a group. Still, if he could handle being around her and talking with her then, it would seem that seeing her in front of the school should be no big deal beyond a sense of, “I’m glad I got to see her.” Taiga, on the other hand, has always frozen up around Yuusaku, so her continuing to do so is not hard to believe.

Having seen many an anime title, I’ve seen the school cultural festival portrayed many, many, many times. That said, I have to say that this is the first time I’ve seen a class scheduled to perform a pro-wrestling parody match. I hope that aspect isn’t dropped in episode 12 because I think I’d rather enjoy seeing this production put on for its uniqueness as well as the humor it could produce.

Originally posted at

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