Fruits Basket Gets the Brotherhood Treatment
You know how we sometimes say that anime usually has another motive for existing other than being good entertainment in and of itself? Like, how many anime are just large advertisements for the manga upon which they are based? Because of this mentality, when the ending of a manga comes and goes, I generally realize that we are never getting either a first adaptation or another adaptation of that work because there’s nothing left to advertise. and it’s a depressing feeling because as I have stated before, I love anime.
Anime is my preferred medium not that there’s anything necessary wrong with manga, but I just prefer seeing my pictures move. and also have music to it, and voice acting, and all the wonderful things that anime has that manga doesn’t. So it does get very depressing when a manga ends and we see…nothing Because there’s nothing left to advertise, and what reason would a production company have to come together and actually make a new anime, for a manga series that has ended a long time ago.
I DON’T KNOW BUT… 13 years after the original manga ended, a production committee starts up with the goal of re-adapting Fruits Basket from beginning to end. I don’t know why they decided to do this, and frankly I don’t care. Because Fruits Basket is amazing. and you can quote me on that. It’s a series that I’ve loved for over a decade now. And of all the shows to get the Brotherhood Treatment, this was not the one I was not expecting, but I’m so glad it happened. Let’s talk about it. So just in case, what is “The Brotherhood Treatment”? This is what I and some other people like to call it when an older anime that got an adaptation in the past gets a brand new more modern adaptation with better animation and usually a narrative that more closely follows the original material.
It’s named after the series Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood, which was a re-adaptation of the FMA manga after the first adaptation of FMA 2003. So the Fruits Basket manga was printed during 1998 and 2006 and it was first adapted by Studio Deen wayyyyyy back in 2001. But the manga’s original author, was not a very big fan of the original anime. Now I’m not sure as too why? The reasons have probably been stated but not in an easily translatable form that I have been able to find. If anybody actually knows about the wording or has an interview translated, I would quite like to see that. Pass that along. But what we do know is the mangaka’s requirements for this new anime adaptation.
One of which is that it would be COMPLETELY NEW New art, new staff, new everything. This didn’t translate over to the English dub, thankfully, but we’ll get to that in a minute. So this is amazing for existing fans obviously. But if you’ve never dived into Fruba before now, what can you expect? Frutis Basket is about a young girl named Tohru who becomes homeless after the death of her mother and decides to shack up in a tent in a nearby forest and she really doesn’t like the idea of inconveniencing anyone, so staying with friends or relatives is out of the question. Turns out the forest she set up in is on land owned by the large and somewhat powerful Soma family, several members of whom upon noticing her situation invite her to stay in the house on their property; also her tent gets destroyed in a landslide, so she really didn’t have anywhere else to go.
It was quite convenient….actually. OH, and also the Soma family has a curse where if they get embarrassed by anyone of the opposite gender they turn into the animals of the zodiac. It’s kind of a big thing. Now, over the course of the manga and the original series, we get to learn quite a bit about the Soma family, why three of its members are somewhat distanced from the main family, how broken these people actually are, and we get to see…well, how Tohru can help. How can this young high school girl possibly solve the problems of this extremely dysfunctional family and help them to re-examine their traditions, and their curse. I have also very much liked about Fruits Basket is how Tohru is not really treated like a magical fix for all of the Soma’s problems. She has her own issues as well, so it becomes this interesting symbiotic relationship of helping one another that slowly builds to fix problems with both of them and heal souls. Well, there’s also a bunch of other stuff too, which we haven’t seen yet in the new adaptation. which, slightly depresses me. Remember this from the original anime: I sure do…It was the 2000’s Now, as far as how good this new adaptation is… I can start that off by saying that I may not be the best of judges for that because well I never read the manga.
But from a production standpoint the series is stunning. Like, I can show you the difference between the animation of the now 18-year-old series and the new one and that’s almost enough. It looks fantastic, it sounds fantastic, and with luck the series will far surpass the original narratively as well. Shouldn’t be too hard, considering they just need to follow the manga, but you know these things can happen. Going back to what I said before though, while the mangaka asked for everything to be completely new, apparently keeping the old dubcast from Funimation’s release of the 2001 series was fair game. An odd decision, considering the Japanese got completely recast, but one I am incredibly grateful for. Funimation has historically had an almost 50/50-ish chance of recasting shows that come back around, either through sequels like the Trigun film where everyone but Vash the Stampede got recast, or things like the Yuki Nagato spinoff of Haruhi where they re-cast… no one.
Everyone got their roles back and it was amazing. I love it when they do that It just keeps this this nice continuity with voices and it’s just so great. So in this case, the vast majority of voices from the original English dub make their return, with replacements in some instances because, hey, it’s been awhile. Not everyone is both A) still doing voice acting and B) even available to come back in the first place. But the main cast all kept their voices, and I can’t tell you how nostalgic it was for me to hear these guys back for these characters. That was the moment for me when I felt like, no this is Fruits Basket, it is back. and I am just forever grateful that this situation was able to occur. Fruits Basket as a series and as a story has a lot of significance for me. It was a series I reviewed in my first ever year of making videos. It was the first anime I showed to my now fiancée to showcase what an anime could be. But I always knew it had problems. At times the animation was janky, the narrative flimsy, and it didn’t end all that well. If you even call that an ending.
The show finished off at a narrative stopping point, sure, but with very little actually resolved, so hey go read the manga! It was that kind of ending. I never did….should have. So now this series so far, even with the meager amount that I have seen at present, leads me to be extremely hopeful that what is to come is going to be amazing. Sure, it could just be the nostalgia talking, and once we start getting into the territory of previously un-adapted Once we get to that, I might start seeing things a little bit differently But as it stands is probably going to be my anime of the season. I know there’s a lot of good out there, I realize, but Fruits Basket for me is something I can’t help but praise. Unless everything goes to shit, at which point in time I will re-evaluate. Because again, this is only my First Reaction to the series.
Maybe, with a little luck, it’ll turn out quite different from what I’m expecting. Thank for joining me for this quick discussion. There will be streaming links in the description should you require them, and let me know down in the comments what you have been following this season. Hopefully I’ll talk about it in a future video. A big thank you to my patrons, who make these videos possible and until next time, WATCH MORE ANIME! – and stay frosty everyone.