This page contains major plot spoilers related to the Fruits Basket manga, not yet revealed in the anime. Read at your own risk!
|Also known as|| The Red Butterfly|
Miss No Eyebrows (by Katsuya)
|Hair Color|| Orange (2019 Anime, Manga)|
Dark Orange (2001 Anime)
|Eye Color|| Brown (2019 Anime, Manga)|
Purple (2001 Anime)
|Occupation|| Gang Leader (Formerly)|
|Parents||Unnamed, estranged parents|
|Spouse||Katsuya Honda (Husband)|
|Children||Tohru Honda (Daughter)|
|Extended Family|| Kyo Sohma (Son-in-law)|
Hajime Sohma (Grandson)
|Manga||Chapter 1 (Flashback)|
|Anime|| Episode 1 (2001, flashback)|
Episode 1 (2019, flashback)
|Japanese|| Reiko Yasuhara (2001)|
Miyuki Sawashiro (2019)
|English|| Julie Mayfield (2001)|
Lydia Mackay (2019)
When Kyoko was in middle school, she was a gang leader who was given the nickname "Red Butterfly", the name originating from the legend of how the tail lights on her motorcycle danced like a bright red butterfly when she rode at night. After Kyoko met Katsuya, they worked through difficulties in a joint effort, as he helped her leave the gang and her own abusive household. After Katsuya's death and due to her own experiences, Kyoko lovingly raises Tohru to believe that everyone needs to feel needed.
Kyoko died a few months before the start of the series when she is struck by a car. Despite that, Tohru clings to her mother's memory and calls her the most important person in her life, and repeats bits of her mother's emotional wisdom throughout the series.
When Kyoko was young she had very long dyed hair and would often wear her gang's usual garb of long coats and bandages. She has purple eyes and it would appear that she dyed her hair to be rebellious. Her hair is depicted as strawberry blonde in illustrations and has no shading in the manga. As an adult she cut her hair short and is often seen in casual clothing in the photographs that Tohru keeps of her.
Kyoko's personality changed over time when she went kayaking as a teenager. Before meeting Katsuya, she resembled both Tohru and Arisa, prone to violence—she could hold her own in a fist fight—and easily jumping to conclusions and wild assumptions. However, deep in her heart, she did all this to get attention from her parents. All she wanted was for someone to care for her and to nurture her with love.
As a parent, she is a source of kindness, effort and wisdom for Tohru, as Kyoko's advices and words serve as a major pillar of support for Tohru.
Early LifeKyoko was born into a cold household. Her father never thought about his family, and her mother only cared about her husband and her appearance. As a result, they barely paid Kyoko any attention, resulting in her feeling neglected. She joined a gang, even before she got into middle school, and she barely showed up at school. As she grew up, she saw the world as a bleak place, until she met Katsuya Honda. They spent a lot of time together and they both developed crushes on each other. She began going back to school and ditching her gang. After her gang beat her up, she was hospitalized. She couldn't take the high school entrance exams as a result. When she was discharged, she returned home to find her father dropping a bag of her belongings in front of her and declaring that he was disinheriting her and disowning her all together.
Katsuya then turned up and gave them a bit of a lecture for choosing to banish their daughter because she "didn't turn out the way they wanted". He then asked Kyoko to marry him to her father's complete shock. He then asks if her father objects, which he doesn't since he no longer considers Kyoko his daughter. Kyoko and Katsuya then left and married shortly afterwards. Tohru would be born some years later.Katsuya soon had to leave for a business trip when Tohru was about three, and developed pneumonia. He never went to a doctor, and died during the night after calling Kyoko. Kyoko then went into a trance-like state, where she didn't notice anything or anyone. At one point, she ran out of her home to the sea to meet Katsuya, when she heard a little girl, no older than Tohru, and her mother fussing about finding a train ticket.
This caused her to snap out of her trance and remember that she had a child. She quickly ran home, wondering how long it had been since she'd talked to Tohru, remembering that Katsuya's father had come by a few times to make her meals, but not knowing how often. When she arrived, Tohru was sitting and waiting. She smiled and said, "Welcome home, mother." From then on, she tried to be the best parent she could, to always smile and give Tohru what she needed.
Meeting Kyo SohmaKyoko had met Kyo when he was sitting in a place filled with unwanted pipes. She didn't care who he was or where he had come from but she knew that he was lonely, just like she was. Despite Kyo trying to distance himself from her (not liking the fact that they share almost similar names), Kyoko blatantly talks about Tohru, saying that her world revolves around Tohru. Despite their first meeting, Kyoko showed a picture of Tohru to Kyo without hesitation.
Eventually, they started warming up with each other and subsequently, Kyo learned of the Hondas address and would drop by secretly to spy on Tohru.
Tohru goes missing
One day Tohru goes missing, causing Kyoko great distress. Kyo finds out what happened and promised to look for her, but Yuki found her first. Kyoko was holding the hat that Yuki left when Kyo returned from his search, and recognized it as his old hat that Yuki had found. He was angry that Kyoko had "sided with that guy". Kyoko tried explaining that it didn't matter if he was bad or not, but Kyo ran off, calling her a traitor.
Introducing Arisa Uotani
Arisa was also a Yankee, and she idolized "The Red Butterfly". She bumped into Tohru and Tohru told Arisa about how her mom was Kyoko Honda. Arisa threatened to punch Tohru, but didn't, and went to Tohru's house after school to meet Kyoko. They were walking home when Kyoko jumped out and hugged Tohru. Arisa was introduced to the retired Yankee. Arisa was disgusted on the fact of Kyoko being cute, and motherly.
Angry, Arisa left Tohru's house. Then, Arisa realized she wanted a life like Tohru's the more she hung out with her. Arisa, brave and scared, told her gang members that she was leaving the gang, and she would take whatever punishment. The gang started to beat up Arisa, then Kyoko, wearing her "Red Butterfly" jacket, came in, and saved Arisa, bringing her back to their house with Tohru waiting. When Kyoko died she gave her Red Butterfly jacket to Arisa.
Introducing Saki Hanajima
Saki Hanajima is a friend of Tohru's (Tohru and Arisa call her Hana-chan). Tohru and Hana met in their second year of middle school after Hanajima transferred to her school after being severely bullied at her old school.She always wears black to show that she is a sinner. This is because she blames herself for the near death of a classmate in elementary school, because she said that she wanted him to die and used her waves to hurt him.
She wanted to turn herself into the police for what she had done except her parents denied her guilt saying that there wasn't any evidence of her guilt. She is known for being able to sense electric waves and has a little brother who can put curses on people. He just has to know their names. He's known for putting a curse on the leaders of the Prince Yuki Fan Club. (The result of one of these curses was the 2nd year rep's role as the evil stepmother in the play "Sorta Cinderella".) Saki has black hair and when she is at school instead of wearing black she paints her nails black.
Every morning, when Kyoko left for work, Tohru would say "Come home safe!" The morning Tohru overslept from studying and wasn't able to wish her mother to return home as she always did, Kyoko died in a car accident.
She was at a traffic junction, waiting to cross the road. Kyo had been standing behind her but out of guilt could not talk to her due to his rashness when they went when he was younger. Apparently, as she crossed the road, a car sped at her (it was said that it seemed like speeding towards her only). Kyo could have dragged Kyoko away, but he couldn't because it would reveal his curse in turn. Kyoko gets knocked down by the car and lies on the road, slowly bleeding to death as an ambulance was on the way.
As she accounted for the life she had lead up until then, Kyoko wished that she had loved Tohru even more, wondering whether she had given enough love to Tohru to make up for the love that Katsuya couldn't. Kyoko knew she couldn't die just yet. Tohru had just entered high school, something she couldn't do. She wept as she could feel her life sweeping away, knowing that Tohru would be left all alone now.
In afterlife, she was shown crying in her middle school form. She, however, started to cry tears of joy when she finally 'reunites' with her late husband, telling her she has done a good job on raising Tohru with love that he could not.
Differences from the source material
This section contains the overall plot differences between the original manga and the 2001 and 2019 anime of Kyoko Honda. As so, all information may not constitute canon material. Click on "Expand" to read.
- She shares her 2001 English voice actress with Okami Sohma.