|Also known as||Gure-san (by Ayame)|
Gure-nii (by Rin)
Shii-chan (by Momiji and Kagura)
Sensei (by Hatsuharu and Mitsuru)
Noa Kiritani (Pen name)
|Age||~25-26 (Chpt 1-11)|
~26-27 (Chpt 12-95)
~27-28 (Chpt 95-136)
|Height||178 cm / 5'10"|
|Weight||68.5 kg / 151 lbs|
|Hair Color||Grey (Manga and 2019 Anime)|
Black (2001 Anime)
|Eye Color||Grey (Manga and 2019 Anime)|
Brown (2001 Anime)
|Spouse||Akito Sohma (Wife)|
|Children||Shiki Sohma (Son)|
|Extended Family||Akira Sohma (Father-in-law) |
Ren Sohma (Mother-in-law)
|Anime||Episode 1 (2001)|
Episode 1 (2019)
|Japanese||Ryōtarō Okiayu (2001)|
Yuichi Nakamura (2019)
Mari Hino (Young, 2019)
Apphia Yu (Young)
|“||I am not worth any special mention. I have no power, and little merit. I'm worthless, the worst kind of man.||”|
He is the Dog of the Chinese Zodiac and one of the oldest members of the Cursed Sohmas. He is best friends with Ayame Sohma and Hatori Sohma, and the three make up the "Mabudachi Trio". He is also the owner of the house where he, Tohru Honda, Yuki Sohma, and Kyo Sohma live. He is a writer who publishes literary novels under his own name and trashy romances under pen names.
While Shigure is depicted as lazy and dirty-minded, he can also be extremely sly and manipulative. Having been madly in love with Akito Sohma ever since she was in the womb, Shigure has stated that he is willing to sacrifice anything or dirty his hands to get what he wants. His main motivation is to break the Sohma Curse so he can free Akito; the God, from the curse and the need to live as a man, so he can have her all to himself.
Shigure is an adult man with a rather large build and tall stature, who is noted to be very handsome by the people around him. He has nape-length, straight, medium-grey hair with an “M-shaped”, middle-parted bang, and longer locks hanging around his face, framing his eyebrows. He also has a pair of light-grey eyes, in which he occasionally wears oval-shaped glasses on top of.
Shigure is fond of wearing traditional Japanese clothing and does so habitually, as he claims that it gives him the vibes to write. He is often seen in his long-sleeved dark green kimono with a light-green obi. When he has to leave home for business, Shigure wears dark-colored, tight suits, and slicks back his hair.
In the flashbacks from Another, Shigure seems to have grown out of his habit of dressing in traditional clothing; seemingly have adopted a modern casual dress sense.
At the start of the series, Shigure is portrayed as a laid-back, aloof, and fun-loving man who is insightful and gives wise advice. When he discovers Tohru camping in the wilderness behind their home, Shigure quickly becomes protective of and doting towards her; taking her in with only basic housework as an exchange, attending her parent-teacher conferences, and showering her with gifts to the point where Saki Hanajima and Arisa Uotani liken him to a grandfather spoiling his granddaughter.
He can also be mildy perverted, often joking about high school girls, but apart from some harmless "flirting", he never acts on it nor does he seem to genuinely serious about it. Even when Isuzu Sohma offers herself to him, he rejects it, because the only one he truly and only loves is Akito. Shigure also likes pushing other people's buttons, not out of maliciousness, but because he finds entertainment in it. Despite this, there are a few instances that Shigure does something which he gains nothing for himself, such as orchestrating a situation in which Hatori and Mayuko Shiraki could meet each other again and pushes Mayuko into actively pursuing Hatori so both parties are happy.
However, it is later revealed that Shigure is an extremely selfish, sly, and self-serving man who only cares about himself and what he wants, who can also be very cunning, manipulative, and deceptive. He is willing to use and hurt others to achieve his goals with no remorse or regret. At first, Shigure was completely unrepentant and callous when he hears about other zodiac members' abuse at Akito's hands, as long as he gets his desired results, though at certain times he does show compassion and allows the younger zodiacs reprieve from Akito, but such acts are mainly done to ensure his own goals. However, just like every other Zodiac, Shigure mentions that he is miserable because he feels like a “monster” in an otherwise normal world, and states that he is the most cursed for genuinely loving Akito as a woman, not as a God.
His dark side mostly stems from his desire to see the curse broken and have Akito all to himself. Evident from his relationship with Akito, he can be very petty and immature; he torments her with mind games and even had sex with her mother, Ren, as 'payback' for her having sex with Kureno. He also describes himself as a person who can't stand being hurt, so when he gets his hands on something, he never wants to give it back nor does he want anyone else to touch it. Shigure is also hyper-aware and knows more than he lets on and usually hides his true feelings behind a light-hearted facade. He willingly stirs up trouble in order to make things moving and make them the people around him act a certain way and thus be an accumulation in breaking the curse. Everything he does is planned as well, such as asking Akito to allow Tohru to live in his home, being decidedly ”cruel” towards Akito, and telling Tohru to leave the house for an errand at exactly the same time Kureno would be out on the street waiting for her.
However, despite his dark nature, it is shown that Shigure was simply lost in bitterness and broken heart over what happened between him and Akito and his time with Tohru was able to allow him to open his heart once more, as what once started as simply seeing Tohru as a pawn gradually but inevitably turned into genuine compassion and care for her that started Shigure's own change. He admits to Hatori that he feels such guilt for using her for his own ends and causing her suffering that he loathed himself, and in addition to finally able to feel guilt over his dark actions, he is even able to actually contemplate his previous sinister and self-serving actions enough to also feel guilt over it, showing that despite his initial lack of care, he is just suppressing his emotions and deep down he does feel remorse over what he had to do, but simply dismissed it as he believed that breaking the curse would not only benefit him but also the other Zodiacs and thus chose to let them suffer knowing it would end once the curse ends and Akito changes: Not only does he not make any excuses for the way he is, but he is able to actually admit his worst traits and that what he was doing was wrong, and even bitterly calls himself ”the dirtiest one of all”. He also starts to reflect on his own uncaring demeanor and his obsessive but genuine love for Akito and ultimately acknowledges that it was selfish and unhealthy and even actually feels uncharacteristic regret just upon seeing Tohru, to where he stated that someone like him should have fallen for Tohru instead. Indeed, towards the end, with his goals finally achieved, the curse broken and Akito free to be herself, he finally admits that the entire ordeal has taught him to overcome his immature and selfish side and be more generous to the point where he abandons his goal to have her all to himself and is willing to selflessly allow her to choose who she wants to be with. When Akito does choose to go back to him, Shigure quits treating her so coldly and instead begins offering her emotional support whenever she needs it, and encourages her towards positive growth.
Tohru's compassion has influenced Shigure to where he is able to start caring for others more and his relationships with the people around him improves, as displayed by his willingness to ensure Rin doesn't endanger herself anymore by telling the curse will eventually break on it's own and ultimately deciding to stop fooling and manipulating Tohru by coldly pretending that he and the rest of the Zodiacs finds solace in Kyo's existence as the Cat even if they would admit it themselves, revealing his true dark nature to Tohru, but at the same time also finally exposing her to the truth that would allow her, albeit painfully, to make the decision whether to tell Kyo she loved him or not in case the curse didn't break before Kyo had to be confined, with no strings attached.
As a father, Shigure does not seem like he has changed much, based on his son Shiki's comments about him being conniving, too light-hearted, always jumping at the chance to tease people (especially Shiki) a ”joke of a grown man”, and that any compliment gets straight to his head. Despite that, Shiki describes him as someone who is reliable and someone who he can trust. Indeed, Shigure is very involved in Shiki's life and is always willing to go the extra mile for him when he shows interests in doing things he didn't prior, and encourages Shiki to come to terms with his mistakes and become a better person.
On the day of Ren Sohma became pregnant with Akito, Shigure had a dream where a still transparent Akito appeared and told him that they would be able to meet soon, whereupon he began crying. Shigure, along with Kureno, Hatori, Ayame crowded around Ren and reached out to her womb, knowing that "God" was inside there. Ever since then, Shigure has been in love with Akito. And after Akito was born and it was decided that she was to be raised as a boy, the four boys were told to keep it a secret. Shigure correctly deduced that Ren was jealous over the fact that Akito would be stealing every male’s attention.
As he continued growing up, his feelings towards Akito deepened. One day, Akito walked up to Shigure and asked him if he loved her. Shigure fetched a camellia from the garden and gave it to Akito, and confessed that she is always on his mind and that he loves her more than anyone else— that being the “unshakeable truth”. This left a deep impression on both of them. After this, Shigure would regularly stay by Akito’s side; witnessing Kyo’s true form alongside her, and holding her in his arms when she was sad.
Shigure grew up alongside Hatori and Ayame, and the three attended elementary, middle- and high school together. During their high school years, Shigure was not apart of the student council, but did serve as a support for Hatori and Ayame who were. The three of them were known as the "Mabudachi Trio".
At some point, Shigure found out that Akito had begun a sexual relationship with Kureno. He became incredibly jealous of this and proceeded to have sex with Ren as a form of revenge. This made Akito even more infuriated, and she thus banished Shigure from the Sohma estate as a punishment. Shigure had since been living in his house alone, financing the living expenses partly from the money he gets from the main house. After a while, Hatsuharu Sohma begged Shigure to save Yuki Sohma and let the latter live with him. Shigure joked that he would do so if Haru began calling him “Sensei”, which the boy faithfully did. As so, Shigure invited Yuki to live with him and the two had been living together since.
First Year Arc
Shigure noticed Tohru intruding in his house, and they talked about the zodiac figurines Tohru was looking at. He didn't think that a young girl would like objects of the such. They discuss the The Chinese Zodiac Legend, how her mom tell her about it, how she feels bad for the cat who was left behind and as that is why she wanted to stop being the year of the dog to become the year of the cat. This amuses Shigure who whispers I wonder what he would say if he heard you say that, then he was about to say that she was a dog like him but is interrupted before finishing by Yuki who scolds Shigure for bothering Tohru. He then greets her and explains to Shigure that they are classmates, Shigure introduces himself, Yuki asks her what brings her there and she says that she lives nearby which seems strange to Yuki and Shigure. She is about to leave but Yuki asks her to walk to school together since she is there. Later, after Tohru walked to her tent, Shigure and Yuki noticed her. Tohru was shocked, and Shigure laughed all the way home.
In the next morning, he lets Tohru live in his house in exchange for housekeeping, for both Yuki and Shigure are not good at it. When they are setting her belongings in her new room, Kyo jumped from the roof to fight with Yuki. When Tohru tries to stop them from fighting, she ends up slipping and hugging Kyo from behind in her fall, causing him to transform into a cat. She is shocked at this and when she gets up quickly thinking of taking him to a hospital, a debris from the ceiling falls on her head stunning her and causing her to fall on Yuki and Shigure causing their transformation into animals as well, in a domino effect.
They cleared up the issue of the zodiac animals, and Shigure showed his hidden calculating side well speaking to Akito. Shigure tricked Kyo into entering Kaibara Municipal High School.
Second Year Arc
Before Summer Vacation
During Summer Vacation
After Summer Vacation
Third Year Arc
In his very last apparition, Shigure is seen with Akito on a date, where he asks her if she isn’t going to see Tohru and Kyo off, to which she replies that she won’t. However, Akito explains that she can always visit Tohru anytime, either way. Akito tells Shigure he can go if he wants to, but he responds by saying that she is a “crafty girl”, and they lovingly continue on their date. Despite the initial complex relationship Shigure shares with Tohru, he reminisces on the memories he had shared with her over the past three years.
He is seen in a flashback.
He is mentioned by Shiki.
|Image||Name||What they call Shigure||What Shigure calls them|
|Image||Name||What they call Shigure||What Shigure calls them|
|Image||Name||What they call Shigure||What Shigure calls them|
|Kisa Sohma||Shigure oji-chan||Satcchan|
|Ritsu Sohma||Shigure nii-san||Rit-chan|
|Kureno Sohma||Shigure nii-san||Kureno-kun|
Differences from the source material
- Shigure’s appearance differs between the manga and the anime adaptions:
- The 2001 anime depicts Shigure with black hair and brown eyes. The manga and 2019 anime show Shigure having grey-colored hair and eyes.
- In the 2001 anime, Shigure’s overall personality is much more lighthearted and comedic.
- He is perverted, funny, and lazy, and does not show much depth to his inner conflicts. The darker and more manipulative aspects of his personality are fundamentally absent.
- Since he has a different relationship with Akito in the 2001 anime than he does in the manga and 2019 anime, Shigure becomes much more cheery and genuine, truly caring for Tohru as if she were his own daughter, and not being afraid to twice stand against Akito to protect her.
- Shigure’s actions and some events in the true form arc differ greatly between the manga and the 2001 anime:
- Akito appears and taunts Tohru about the knowledge of the Sohma family secret, but only leaves when Shigure locates the two. He apologizes for her finding out the truth about Kyo, and while begging and crying, pleads for Tohru to save Kyo.
- Since the 2001 anime didn't cover the entire manga and since the manga was still ongoing while it still aired, there are notable differences in the ending:
- Tohru asks Shigure permission to speak with Akito, and Yuki, Shigure, and Hatori accompany Tohru to the Sohma main residence to see Akito. After an initially meek exchange, Akito seizes her by her hair in a rage after Tohru is unable to say why she came, but Yuki and Shigure restrain him from hurting her further.
The Dog of the Zodiac
Shigure is cursed by the spirit of the Dog of the Zodiac. Whenever he is hugged by the opposite sex, or if his body goes through a great deal of stress, Shigure transforms into his Chinese Zodiac form; a grey-blackish Dog with light green eyes. Like all the Cursed Sohmas, their respective animals are drawn to them; and in Shigure's case, dogs. The Dog is the eleventh of all zodiac animals.
He has black-colored hair due to sharing similar traits with his animal, the Dog. In Chinese culture, Dogs are honest and loyal, and the truest friends and most reliable partner, which applies to Shigure in some aspects.
Shigure is also open about how he views himself and the curse; he has stated that he is the most cursed for genuinely being in love with Akito as a woman, not as a God. He also says he feels miserable living in a normal world as a “monster”; at the same time, he acknowledges the Cat's role in the bond and has openly mentioned that he, and the other Zodiacs as well, finds solace in Kyo's existence, since they would never have to suffer as much as he does.
When Shigure’s curse broke, he was subconsciously aware of it and described his feelings as finally knowing how it felt like to have the curse broken. Shigure’s curse was the overall twelfth to break.
- According to the official Fruits Basket Character Book:
- Shigure's name, like most members of the Zodiac, is a pun regarding his Zodiac animal; the dog. His name translates into shower of late autumn, whereas the dog's lunar month is October.
- Shigure's name is derived from the tenth month of the Japanese lunar calendar, Shigurezuki, or "Autumn showers month".
- Shigure habitually wears a kimono unless he has to leave home for business, which according to Takaya is his way of getting into “the spirit of things” as a writer.
- Before he became a writer and still lived at the main house, he used to wear rougher clothes like t-shirts and jeans since it suited his idea of that life.
- It also mentioned that “getting into the spirits of things” is another of his games, as if he’s proving that he’s not committed to anything.
- Shigure often offers advice in metaphors, which is mentioned to not be very surprising considering he’s a novelist.
- Because he is hard to read, Hatori says he’s a “jellyfish”, and Mayuko calls him a “ripple”, meaning “he’s a man who can’t be caught”.
- The Sohmas, particularly the members of the Zodiac, believes Shigure to be the closest to Akito.
- Shigure’s relationship with his parents isn’t very good, but he doesn’t seem to have been rejected by his mother.
- He inherited his looks from his mother.
- According to Natsuki Takaya’s Twitter:
- When Takaya was asked if Akito knew about Shigure and Mayu dating each other, she reveals that if Shigure wanted it to remain a secret, then it would be a secret. If he wanted it to be known, then he would make it known. But since “Shigure is not a superman or something”, the secret might still be let slip accidentally.
- Chapter 122 is where reveals his “true self”. Takaya says it’s a perfect example of his true self, since his reaction isn’t over-exaggerated or heavy like it usually is.
- Shigure, and the rest of the Mabudachi Trio all have a high alcohol tolerance. They enjoy it a decent amount.
- Shigure is the first Sohma to appear in both the anime and manga.
- Shigure is fond of creating nicknames for other people; such as "Aaya" for Ayame Sohma, "Haa-san" for Hatori Sohma, "Haa-kun" for Hatsuharu Sohma, "Momicchi" for Momiji Sohma, "Satcchan" for Kisa Sohma, "Hii-kun" for Hiro Sohma, and Mit-chan for Mitsuru.
- Shigure repeatedly uses his favorite phrase "Qué será, será. Whatever will be, will be. What won't happen, won't".
- Shigure constantly sings his made-up song "High School Girls" in the 2001 anime. The song made its first appearance when Arisa and Saki came over to the Sohma's for the first time, also making a second appearance in the episode "Black or White". Here is the song as follows: High school girls! High school girls! One, two, three, high school girls! High school girls! High school girls! All for me, high school girls! It is unknown if the song has any more verses but those two.
- His most successful pen name is Noa Kiritani, which he used for his erotic novel series, Sigh of a Summer Affair. Hatori, Hatsuharu, and Saki Hanajima have read this series. Other works by Shigure under his real name include In the moonlight, Palpilations and Hermit's Mountain.
- His 2001 counterpart is called Fungure while his 2019 counterpart, along with the manga, is called Creepgure.
- In an author's note, Natsuki Takaya described Shigure as a "problem child."