| This article contains HEAVY spoilers. Please view at your own risk.
|The Stars are Far|
|Opening & Ending|
|Ending Song||Vanilla Salt|
The Palmtop Tiger of Happiness
One Step Forward
"The Stars are Far" is the 15th episode of Toradora! and was first aired on January 15, 2009. The screenwriter for the episode was Tatsuto Higuchi.
Yusaku declares to the class that he does not want to be student council president and flips out in the middle of class. He shows up to school the next day with his hair dyed blonde, which gets him in trouble with the teacher. While everyone tries to figure out what is wrong with him, Ryuuji walks home with Minori; they have a conversation about Ami's odd reaction towards Yusaku's behavior. When Ryuuji arrives home, he is surprised to find Yusaku there. Yusaku had run away from home, much to Taiga's delight. He spends the day with them full of excitement, but runs off when Ryuuji's mother attempts to dye his hair back to normal. At school, Taiga is competing to be the next student council president.
Yusaku has been acting weird lately, and it all comes to a head during the discussion about the upcoming student council president elections. Everyone thinks that Yusaku is the top candidate and will win, but he shocks them all by refusing to run and declaring that he’s quitting the student council. Things get worse the next day when Yusaku comes to school with dyed hair, but no one really understands why. When questioned, Sumire denies knowing anything and notes that since Yusaku has quit the student council, what he does has nothing more to do with her. Ami suspects that Sumire herself might be the cause, and although Sumire admits the possibility, she feels that if that is indeed the case, then she’d be even more disappointed in Yusaku. As everyone else remains concerned about Yusaku, Ami takes the stance that he’s just looking for attention, and that angers Taiga. Despite this, Minori decides to pay a visit to Yusaku’s house, and Ryuuji goes with her.
Along the way, the two start talking about Ami, and Minori actually thinks that she is quite worried. Minori sees Ami as someone who works in the world of adults, understands things better than they do, and has to patiently interact with children like them. She feels that Ami understanding is the last salvation for people like them who don’t understand because they’re immature. When Ryuuji then comments on how kind Minori is, she denies it and claims that she’s arrogant and dishonest. The two ultimately have no luck at Yusaku’s house, but when Ryuuji returns home, he finds Yusaku there. Yusaku has run away from home and is going to be staying there for a while, so Ryuuji cooks dinner for them. Taiga insists on helping, and even though her fried eggs are burnt, Yusaku happily eats them. After eating, Ryuuji finally asks about the dyed hair, so Yusaku admits that he doesn’t want to be student council president, and the dyed hair makes it so that no one would expect it from him.
Ryuuji falls asleep while playing games with the other two, and when he wakes back up, Yusaku has already gone to bed. Taiga wants to eat ice cream, so the two head to the store, but before they go, they check up on their friend. Taiga is shocked to see that he’s been crying in his sleep, and when she’s alone with Ryuuji again, she herself starts crying over how she didn’t notice any of Yusaku’s pain. In response to this, Ryuuji turns Taiga’s attention to the stars, and Taiga observes that even though they seem so close, they’re actually really far away. Taiga compares this to herself and Yusaku, so Ryuuji points out that she wants to understand him because she likes him and that she stretches out her hand to him so that they can get closer. The next morning, Ryuuji wakes up to find Yusaku already up and energetic again. He and Taiga make so much noise that Yasuko kicks them out, so the three of them go to a batting cage.
Yuuaku’s prolonged session in the batting cage makes Ryuuji think that something is still wrong with him, but regardless, Taiga volunteers to go into the cage next and manages to hit all the balls, much to Yusaku’s amazement. When they get home later that day, they find Yasuko waiting for them with a box of black hair coloring. Apparently Yusaku’s father had been on the phone with her, and she wants to dye Yusaku’s hair back before sending him home. Yasuko thinks that Yusaku will be student council president, but he refuses and manages to escape. In the aftermath, Taiga is worried again and remembers how Minori had once claimed to hate horror even though she actually loved it. She applies this concept to how Yusaku claims not to want to be student council president and implies that he actually wants to be. In order to make things better, Taiga decides to run for student council president as an evil candidate.
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