| This article contains HEAVY spoilers. Please view at your own risk.
|Tiger and Dragon|
|Name Kanji||虎と竜 Tora to Ryū|
|Animation Director||Masayoshi Tanaka|
|Original Air date||October 2, 2008|
|Opening & Ending|
|Ending Song||Vanilla Salt|
Ryuuji and Taiga
"Tiger and Dragon" is the 1st episode of Toradora! and was first aired on October 2, 2008. The screenwriter for the episode was Mari Okada.
Ryuuji Takasu is in his second year of highschool. In his class is his crush, Minori Kushieda and his best friend, Yusaku Kitamura. As Ryuuji walks down through the hallways, he bumps into the "school's most dangerous animal" - Taiga Aisaka.
Ryuuji Takasu is discontent about how his eyes make him look like an intimidating delinquent. He wants to get closer to a girl he likes, Minori Kushieda, but has not been able to tell her his feelings. On the first day of his second year of high school, he bumps into a diminutive girl, Taiga Aisaka, known for snapping at others and her outward brutality. By coincidence, both Taiga and Minori are in Ryuuji's class this year. Later Taiga accidentally puts a love letter in Ryuuji's bag, thinking it was Yusaku Kitamura's bag; Taiga then comes to Ryuuji's house that night to kill him for knowing that she likes Yusaku. Taiga discovers that Ryuuji likes Minori, who is Taiga's best friend. To calm Taiga down, Ryuuji tells her that he will do anything to help her with Yusaku. Ryuuji finds out the next morning that Taiga lives in an apartment building next door to his house and when he comes over, he cleans her kitchen and serves her food.
Ryuuji Takasu lives in a small apartment with his single mother, Yasuko Takasu, who works at a hostess bar. Their apartment is overshadowed by a large, luxury apartment tower next door. Ryuuji does all the chores of the house and on his way to start a new school year, he finds that his looks still give him the reputation as a Yankee. As such, people fear him, giving him their wallets out of the blue.
Ryuuji has a best friend named Yusaku and Yusaku is good friends with a girl named Minori, whom Ryuuji likes but finds himself flustered when trying to talk with her. The three of them are in the same class as is the short, mean-looking girl with the nickname of "Palmtop Tiger” – Taiga Aisaka. When Taiga runs into Ryuuji in the hall, everyone expects a fight and are amazed when Taiga punches Ryuuji out of her way.
After school, Ryuuji is returning to his homeroom from the teacher's room when he finds Taiga trashing the place. He tries to get his bag, but Taiga tries to insist it is her bag. Ryuuji points out that her bag is on a nearby chair but Taiga insists. However, Taiga sneezes and loses her grip. Realizing she has lost the battle, she leaves with a "baka" insult. Ryuuji can't leave the classroom as it is, so he cleans up the place before going home.
At home, Ryuuji discovers a love letter from Taiga to Yusaku, thereby explaining why Taiga was so keen to get his bag, having placed the love letter in the wrong bag. He's tempted to read the letter but doesn't because there's no letter in the envelope. About two in the morning, Ryuuji is awakened by a noise in the apartment. Since his mother won't be home from her job yet, he decides to check it out and finds the balcony sliding glass door open. Taiga is in a nightgown and armed with a wooden sword, determined to at minimum make Ryuuji forget about the love letter. After dodging getting hit for a bit and damaging a door, Taiga is going for a finishing blow until Ryuuji says that the envelope was empty, after which she collapses.
Ryuuji ends up feeding Taiga, who is apparently very hungry. Ryuuji is amazed by this and starts to ask about Taiga's parents feeding her, but then remembers that everyone's home situation is different. To try to make peace with Taiga, he shows her a box full of things he's done for the girl he loves, including poems, MD's of songs he's made, etc. However, one of the artifacts has the name of the girl Ryuuji likes -- Minori. Since Ryuuji likes Taiga's best friend and Taiga likes Ryuuji's best friend, it would seem an alliance is in order. So Ryuuji agrees to listen to whatever Taiga has to say, just not at the moment. This satisfies Taiga, who heads home, unworried about her safety because of the sword she carries.
Making breakfast later that morning, Ryuuji gets a screaming phone call from Taiga and he hangs up right away. She immediately calls back, not happy with having been hung up on but instructs Ryuuji to go out to his veranda. He does so and is stunned to see Taiga in the new apartment building in a window just across from his apartment. Taiga threatens Ryuuji, but agrees to give him 10-minutes to finish making breakfast. Since she's hungry, he's bringing her some food too. Entering her unlocked apartment, he finds the stench pretty bad despite this being a luxury apartment. It is scarcely filled with furniture but there is a lot of garbage and a sink full of nastiness. Ryuuji finds her sleeping, so decides to clean up the place.
Taiga wakes back up and is amazed to see her apartment clean and breakfast on the small table and that Ryuuji is the cause of it all. She sits down and starts to eat without the traditional "itadakimasu" that is said before eating. Rather than give Ryuuji complete satisfaction, she decides to give thanks to the rice god and manufacturers for the meal.
Characters In Order of Appearance
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