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This site has Toradora's second ending theme, Orange (オレンジ), together with lyrics both in Japanese and translated.

First, it's worth noting that the word Orange is ambiguous in English, referring both to a color and a fruit, and it is used to this effect in the song. At one point in the song it talks about a fruit which is turning orange, and at another it talks about an orange. I don't know if we can conclude that these are the same fruit, so if you want to claim that they are actually different fruits feel free to do so.

What is the significance of this fruit, and the story told in the song in general, in the context of the anime? It seems to be symbolic somehow, but I don't know what it's referring to when the singer is talking about an "orange ...[which] was sour, ... [but they] ate it all anyway."

Can anyone decode the meaning of this song, and what the orange is symbolizing, in the context of the anime?

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  • orange define the character of Taiga and Takasu. the word is only ambiguous when orange is ripe. They try to help each other without being unknown to their own feeling which is unripe orange which is fruit but not color. At last they understand their feeling which is both fruit and color. Both Kitamura and Ami know about it so Ami try to warn Takasu to understand his true feeling and become a ripe orange. this what i think. – mirroroftruth Aug 2 '14 at 17:08
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This song, being sung by the 3 main heroines, was especially made for the anime. The song uses the metaphor of an orange, likening the girls to an unripen, not yet matured, orange.

This blog entry offers a much in-depth look into the meaning behind the song. Though the translations may differ between people, the general meaning stays intact. The blog article mostly compares the CoalGuys and the {Words of Songs} fansubs, with the author trusting the {Words of Songs} version over the CoalGuys fansub (though he admits he likes the fansub lyrics better).

One can assume one of two things from the lyrics: the first being that it's Taiga who is the main voice narrating the lyrics, or the second, that everybody is narrating these lyrics. The following explanations will try to look at the lyrics from both perspectives.

“It’s just that I don’t know/My true self.” This line can easily be seen to be Taiga, or any of the characters. I think Toradora is special in the fact that all the characters can fit into this. It implies how all the characters have a hidden side to themselves that even they may not know.

“Into the broad earth, a single seed/Extended its roots/And bore fruit that was still unripe.” The fruit, first of all, probably symbolizes the narrator(s). This “unripe fruit” thing, I’m guessing, is a lack of maturity for the fruit and the person.

“The fruit that wants to turn orange as soon as possible.” An unripe orange is usually green, while a ripe one is... well, orange (big surprise, huh). Basically, the person(s) want(s) to mature. This may be because if they mature, they may learn more about themselves in the process.

“by basking in your light.” I think that this light is the object of the narrator’s affection. It’s easier to see that when looking at the next reference to light: “I didn’t want to get hurt/So I fled/When I did that, not even light/Would shine upon me.” Because love is known to be painful, the narrator tries to flee from it, but realizes she cannot grow as a person without love.

“I tried to eat/An orange today, too/But it was still sour and I cried/It reminded me of myself, so I couldn’t throw away the rest.” We can see how the person and the fruit are symbols of each other, and their immaturity is also accented. If we look at the fansub version we see that eating the immature/unripe fruit shows that the person is also not mature yet, while it’s a lot harder to use the {Words of Songs} one.

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  • Just for someone reading likening the girls to an unripen, not yet matured, orange: if the Grisaia series came to your mind, you made the wrong association: in Grisaia no Kajitsu (the fruit of grisaia), the "fruit" is the girl's remorse/sin, not the girls themselves. anime.stackexchange.com/a/6389/2808 – Mindwin Feb 4 '15 at 12:01
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I think the orange personifies the characters of the Toradora, mostly the girls (Taiga, Ami & Minori).

The lyrics says,

ORENJI iro ni hayaku naritai kajitsu kimi no hikari wo abite

which translates to:

The fruit wants to hurry up And turn orange-colored Basking in your light

means that the girls want to be more matured, like a still unripe orange that wants to be ripe.

It also says,

ORENJI kyou mo tabete mita kedo mada suppakute naita watashi mitai de nokosenai kara zenbu tabeta

which means:

I tried to eat
An orange today, too But it was still sour, and I cried Because it's unlike me to leave any behind I ate it all

or (this is just my translation of the line watashi mitai de nokosenai kara which could be wrong).

I tried to eat
An orange today, too But it was still sour, and I cried It's like me so I can't leave it behind and so I ate it all

and can be pertained that the singer is comparing herself to that particular orange, which is still sour (not matured enough), like her, so she ate it all up. Can also be assumed that she can't leave herself behind or she pity the orange because it was like her.

Also,

ORENJI itsuka amaku naru kana sore to mo shibonjau no? watashi no mirai shiritakunakute zenbu tabeta

which means,

I wondered if The oranges would turn sweet someday Or would they wither? I didn't want to learn of my future So I ate it all

First she wondered if the oranges will someday turn sweet or wither, then she stated that she didn't want to learn her future, which solidifies that the singer was personifying herself in that orange fruit.

Toradora involves the story of the girls and their thinking development towards love. If you have watched Toradora yourself, you would know that this song really relates to them (Taiga, Minori & Ami).

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    You missed "so I ate it all" at the end of the 2nd translation. – nhahtdh Apr 1 '13 at 11:58
  • I guess the translation was wrong in the link you've provided in this part I think the translation is a fair one. There wasn't any clear delimiter between 2 sentences (I haven't checked the official lyrics), so I think the translation is quite dependent on how the sentence is split up. Personally, I'd go with the translation in the link (split the sentence after "naita"). – nhahtdh Apr 2 '13 at 0:11
  • Still if the translation meant it's not like me to leave it behind so I ate it all instead of it's like me so I can't leave it behind and ate it all, the singer is still seeing herself as the orange. – xjshiya Apr 2 '13 at 0:17
  • Well, I'm no longer sure what the meaning is... I'll leave the debate to someone with better knowledge of Japanese. – nhahtdh Apr 2 '13 at 0:22
  • Me too.. I searched for other translations and it goes as what you said, so I better edit my answer. Thanks again. – xjshiya Apr 2 '13 at 0:24
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One key facet to this song is the point at which it becomes the ending song, and how that timing and the song itself play against the larger theme of the anime. The driving message of Toradora is not so much how the characters evolve, but how all their concepts of love evolve.

In the begining, Ryuji and Taiga have very similar ideas about the concept of love, centered around the high school crush. In the episode just before the "Orange" takeover, we find out that Kitimura had the same notion, but when Taiga rejected him, found something new.

Throughout 'Mercury is Retrograde at Christmas,' we see the other main characters also begin to take up this transformation, along with all the pain and confusion that comes with it. From the moment Ami's question about her feelings of guilt rattles her to the point of fouling up the game, Minori is forced to consider her growing feelings for Ryuji and their potential consequences, in was she was not able to back at the beach house. Ryuji has his own moment of burgeoning crisis watching Taiga and Kitimura, while Kitimura has gone from tight containment to bouncing off the walls.

Taiga hasn't looked at herself clearly yet, but Christmas is the arc where we will see her do so. And as for Ami, she is doing her best to force things to a crisis, trying to make the fruits turn orange around her. None of them are quite ready yet, all a bit sour. But they are starting to see that quality within each other, and from there reflect what it means when turned inward. That looking forces them tighter together, unable to give up on those facing the same challenges they are facing.

The strength of this is that it is something that most viewers can also connect with. A challenge we have seen in ourselves. It garners an emotional catharsis that drives viewers to not let it go, because their sour fruit reminds us of ourselves, and we cannot toss that aside or stop from eating it... whichever of those two translations you like best.

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The narrator is a person who sings of her plight and hopes as:

  1. sour, unripe, insignificant orange + sunlight = ripe orange

  2. bitter, incomplete, pained person + lover = happy person

Using the orange metaphor, the narrator is a unripe fruit that chanced upon this world and her lover is sunlight that shines upon her. "So look at me!"

The song continues its flavor (bazinga!): as a person, she gets reminded of herself by oranges. In particular:

  1. most striking, a sour orange reminds herself of her sourness, so om nom nom nom
  2. a bunch of unripe oranges reminds herself of her uncertainty, so om nom nom nom

Both Taiga and Kushieda can play the orange role, while Ryuji is the Sun.

You may be interpreting stuff too literally. Dont go through the orange, instead let the orange go through you!

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