Toradora! 24 (The Masks Come Off)

Toradora! 24 (The Masks Come Off)
とらドラ!Episode 24
Toradora! Ep. 24

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Minori and Ryuuji split up to try to find Taiga and while running, Minori falls. They meet at a classroom and Taiga isn’t there so its off to the school entrance. As they run, Minori uses her superior athletic skills to race ahead and down the stairs, yelling out to Taiga her own confession of her feelings for Ryuuji and how her happiness depends on herself much as Taiga’s happiness depends on Taiga. Taiga hears this and leaves so that when Minori and Ryuuji reach the entrance, Taiga is gone.

Toradora! 24

Minori collapses and has a bloody nose from her fall earlier, so Ryuuji takes her to the infirmary to get her nose bleed to stop. There, Minori tells of her skills at baseball and her plans to attend a college with a softball team and give it her all. She asks about the hairpin and reveals that she figured out it was Ryuuji’s gift to her, but she won’t accept it now because Ryuuji loves Taiga. With that, she encourages Ryuuji to chase his own dream and go after Taiga, which he does.

Toradora! 24

Taiga comes to the cake shop and is surprised to find Ryuuji there already manning the table to sell Valentine cakes and chocolates. Ryuuji explains that he knew that Taiga wouldn’t ditch her job even if she were running away. At the end of the day, Taiga is amazed at how much they were paid when they are confronted by Taiga’s mother and Ryuuji’s mother.

Toradora! 24

Ryuuji’s mother is upset over Ryuuji having taken a job when she wanted him to focus on his studies and Taiga’s mother is upset because she wants Taiga to live with her and not alone. Taiga is not interested in loving with her mother or her mother’s new family and Ryuuji snaps at his mother for pushing her failures on him. With that, Taiga grabs Ryuuji and they flee the scene, leaving Taiga’s mother exasperated and Ryuuji’s mother in tears.

Toradora! 24

On a bridge over a shallow river, Taiga explains the situation with her father attempting to get her mother to get Taiga to live with her. Ryuuji mentions how he has thought that if he had never been born, his mother would have had a better life. This upsets Taiga, who things Ryuuji is planning suicide and in her frustration, she accidentally sends him over the side of the bridge into the freezing water.

Toradora! 24

After exchanging some words of that little affair, Ryuuji says that he plans on running away until he’s 18, at which point he wants to marry Taiga and spend the rest of his life with her. In response, Taiga jumps off the bridge, upset that Ryuuji ruined her own confession plans. They are about to mutually confess when Ryuuji’s phone rings. It is Yuusaku who’s letting them know that both Ryuuji’s and Taiga’s mother are frantically searching for the pair of them.

Toradora! 24

The two of them meet Ami outside her aunt’s apartment building, who brings the wet pair up to the apartment. Her aunt (and family) are not there and she provides a dry change of clothing for Minori and tells Ryuuji that Yuusaku is coming with a change of clothes. Ami forces Ryuuji to state his feelings for Taiga, which he does. Minori also comes by and after Minori and Taiga make up, Ryuuji and Taiga tell the others they are running away.

Toradora! 24

The others are shocked and though they don’t think it is the wise choice, Minori provides them with her life savings, Ami gives them the key to her beach villa, and Yuusaku gives them some tickets. After they leave with Yuusaku, Minori stays behind with Ami. She collapses and allows herself to cry and talks of how tears are the bloody nose of the heart when one trips in life. Ami thinks they are too young to be talking about life since now matter how long, life will go on.

Toradora! 24

Ryuuji and Taiga return to their apartments to grab some essentials before running away. Ryuuji finds the apartment empty and even the parrot gone. There’s a note from his mother and a watch with a map, telling him to present it to his grandparents and that they’d understand. Ryuuji calls the bar where his mother worked and discovers that she has informed them that she’s taking a vacation.

Toradora! 24

At school the next day, Taiga and Ryuuji’s absence is noted by their friends (Haruta, Maya, Noto, and Nanako) while the two of them take their things and board a train. Ami watches Minori train and asks if she’s not going to see Ryuuji and Taiga off. In response, Ami starts throwing snowballs at Ami in a playful fashion. Meanwhile on the train, Taiga states that she figures her mother will soon give up the search rather than cause a commotion that would cause her to look bad. Ryuuji doesn’t mention what happened to his mother but says she’s fine with it. Ryuuji has them go to his grandparents house and shows them the watch. Since they’ve never met before, he introduces himself, then introduces Taiga as his wife and says he has a request.

Toradora! 24

Thoughts/Review:

Well, they certainly packed this episode full of goodness. Heck, the OP didn’t even come until the episode was half-way done and the ED part continued the story. I have no problem using the final time normally devoted to ED theme/credits to more productive time in story telling.

Toradora! 24

So, we finally start really seeing the masks come down. Minori makes her confession and as I thought, she’s been in love with Ryuuji for some time. As usually happens in these situations, the boy never really considered that maybe the girl he liked might like him too. Being afraid of getting a rejection, sometimes it is easier to just dream of said girl and come up with complicated schemes to find JUST the right moment and place to either confess or ask the girl out. Rejection is tough to take no matter where you are in life, but in high school, I do remember how guys and girls took rejection and often it wasn’t very well. Its funny how in hindsight, the things that seemed so important back in high school were in fact trivial, but that’s how it always is in life.

Toradora! 24

Anyway, Minori confesses but she also breaks down in front of Ami. Not only did this mark the moment they truly made up, but I’m sure having a good cry is the first step in moving on with her life. She mourns her loss, then she moves on.

Ami’s mark of moving on did not involve crying but forcing Ryuuji to say the words — “I love Taiga.” With the Ryuuji door shut, she can now also make up with Minori. Also, she can now move on and let Ryuuji go. I wonder if she’ll ever actually say she liked him.

Toradora! 24

The final mask coming off is Ryuuji’s. I’m not just talking about him proposing to Taiga, but him telling his mother off. Despite how he’d tried to be the perfect son and basically repay his mother for all the grief he felt he’d caused her in life, he obviously had some resentment and anger over how his mother wanted to direct his life to avoid her mistakes. All parents want their children to grow up and not make the mistakes they made in their younger years.

Toradora! 24

Further, I think that all parents would love for their children to become something greater. However, how many parents will provide their children advice and proper guidance but in the end let their children go to make their own choices for good or ill? I’m sure many do but there are some who don’t. Ryuuji’s mother was such a person but now I think her departure means that she’s letting Ryuuji make his own choices.

Toradora! 24

So what will Ryuuji do about his missing mother? Why had he been kept from his grandparents all this time? Was it because they would disapprove of what Yasuko does for a living? Maybe they didn’t approve of the marriage in the first place. Where did Yasuko go? What will ultimately happen with Ryuuji and Taiga? Ami? Minori? Yuusaku? I look forward to finding out in the final episode.

Toradora! 24
Finally, I have to give the writers a nod for injecting some humor into the moment with Taiga and Ryuuji on and off the bridge. The humor stuff did not come off as forced but rather the characters being true to themselves. Also, I laughed out loud when Ryuuji sneezed and it got in Taiga’s hair, which annoyed her. That’s an example of an event that feels real, unscripted, and the response in form with the characters. OK, jumping off the bridge may seem a bit much, but if felt right for Taiga to do.

Toradora! 24

Well, only one more episode. In the meantime, I’ve got more stuff to watch. ^_^;

You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

6 Responses to “Toradora! 24 (The Masks Come Off)”

  1. mastermack0 says:

    Bleh, terrible pacing. JC Staff really should have thought this out better. WAY too much crap and it destroyed the story a bit. Also, Ryuuji’s yelling at his mother was uncalled for and was just an attempt to make the audience feel pointless drama.

  2. AstroNerdBoy says:

    I saw it as Ryuuji finally standing up and taking charge of his own life rather than allow his mother to dictate what he did. However, I can understand why you feel the way you do.

    As to the pacing, I do know they are trying to pack EVERYTHING into this anime series seeing as how the light novels are also coming to an end. There’s way more light novel material than can easily squeeze into a 25-episode anime.

  3. Ultimaniac says:

    One thing bugged me at the end. Yasuko said she took the watch from home, so it was her dad’s (Ryuui’s grandpa on Yasuko’s side). But that guy at the end of the ep resembles Ryuuji’s dad more than Yasuko. So wouldn’t that be his grandpa on his dad’s side? The watch shouldn’t have come from him…Lol, I hope that made sense.

  4. AstroNerdBoy says:

    Maybe Yasuko married her brother. *lol* Nah, they wouldn’t do that, would they?

  5. TomandChez says:

    My only complaint about this anime is that it’s coming to an end so soon. I hope there’s a sequel. Hey, it seems popular enough, right?

  6. AstroNerdBoy says:

    My understanding is that the anime is covering all of the light volume volumes, only some stuff doesn’t get the detail it should. If true, then the ending of the anime will match the ending of the light novels. If that’s the case, then I wouldn’t really expect more anime. We’ll see though.

Want to comment? Leave a Reply! Some HTML (for bold, italics, etc.) permitted. Use [spoiler][/spoiler] to hide spoiler content. Block quotes are <blockquote>Text you want to quote goes here.</blockquote>. No personal attacks on other comenters, please. Spirited debate is OK though. ^_^

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Powered by WordPress