She [Karuta] isn’t just thinking…it’s something deeper. She probably knows instinctively what’s right. That’s it. She’s like a jungle hero. She’s like Tarzan.
-Watanuki Banri, of Inu x Boku SS
Cooking is about seeing the possibilities clearly.
After the sixth episode of the currently airing show, Inu x Boku SS, Roromiya Karuta has vaulted over all other competitors to become my favorite. As adorable as I find Ririchiyo, there’s just something irresistible about Karuta’s bottomless stomach and natural desire to help those in need.
Back up and look at her from a distance, however, and the view isn’t so pretty. Descendent of a gashadokuro, Karuta is made of the stuff of nightmares. Like her ancestors, she can transform into a gigantic skeleton, capable of teleporting (or moving impossibly fast?) and picking up her foes or friends with a single skeletal hand. Her constant hunger for foods, namely sweets, is also reminiscent of the mythical spirit’s desire to bite human heads right off of their owners. This insatiability stems from their creation from the bones of people who have starved to death. Thankfully, Karuta lacks any interest in human flesh, opting instead for a never ending supply of candy and snacks. She’s the perfect representative for Anime B&B, earning herself a banner with just this episode! Even better is her skill in the kitchen, and her ability to adapt to the quality of her ingredients. Compare this to Ririchiyo in her lab coat, who treats the food like some sort of chemistry experiment with precise measurements and dangerous penalties for straying from the recipe. The scene where they cook curry together in home economics, coupled with the earlier one where Ririchiyo shares her lunch with Karuta, made me appreciate Karuta all the more for her heart and ability to perceive what others do not, or perhaps can not.
I have a special spot for girls like Karuta, the ones who see the world in a different light and aren’t afraid to live in it with their own set of rules. Think Osaka of Azumanga Daioh, or Luna Lovegood of Harry Potter. Karuta, as well as both of my two examples, gives off the appearance of an airhead–but, nothing could be more false. As Watanuki argues, and Ririchiyo eventually discovers, she always acts within reason, and senses things about people that most others overlook. Whether it be suffering scratches to save a cat in a tree, befriending a girl whose sharp tongue others avoid, or working as a SS agent to protect Shoukiin Kagerou, Karuta is very much aware of her surroundings and always acts accordingly. I eagerly await to see where she will lead me next!
Favorite moment: When Karuta zooms in on an unsuspecting Ririchiyo for a hug of thankfulness and affection.