Nobara Kugisaki and Men: A Jujutsu Kaisen Retrospective

Fabulous, fierce, and fearsome, Nobara Kugisaki is many things, not the least of which is done. Done with her fellow first years, done with her senpais, done with her creepy white-haired sensei and most definitely done with all the shitty curses. From the moment Nobara arrived in Tokyo, she had one goal in mind: get scouted as a model or talent and live the life of her dreams. Enrolling in Tokyo Metropolitan Jujutsu Technical High School was just a means to leave behind the country without added expenses, but clearly, things don’t go according to plan!

So here she is, taking it one day at a time in a less than ideal scenario with less than ideal cohorts and a less than ideal patience threshold, which seems to be wearing really thin, mind you. That’s why we’re here, breaking down all the people (read: men) responsible for Nobara making this face:

A Lady’s Consideration

Fresh off the boat (or should we say bullet train?) in Tokyo, Nobara comes face to face with her future teacher Satoru Gojo and classmates Megumi Fushiguro and Itadori Yuuji. Her first impression of them is less than favourable and more than accurate. She describes Yuuji as a country bumpkin (accurate, he did just arrive from Sendai) who probably ate his own boogers (he did eat a 1000-year-old finger, so we can buy that too). Megumi doesn’t fare much better, she thinks he’s the stuck-up arrogant type who probably set fire to oil-slicked seagulls (a mild exaggeration, but he did beat up half his junior high’s population). And let’s not even get started on Gojo, who claimed he would take his students on a Tokyo tour to glittering and glamorous Roppongi as a welcome for the newbies, yet dumped them at an abandoned building and sent them curse hunting. What a drag?! And we’re just getting started.

In a series of inexplicably frustrating events, Nobara had her skirt stolen by her teacher for a rather unflattering impression, had her presumed dead classmate whom she mourned pull a jack-in-the-box return move months later and had Megumi, in an attempt to rescue her, stick her in a frog (she had mixed feelings given her frog hatred).

But wait, don’t they all get along famously? Well, yes they do. After all, in a world where your comrades make all the difference between life and death, how could they not? For all of her grievances against them, Nobara definitely does have some affection for her fellow compatriots and (possibly) well-intentioned teacher. She can appreciate their finer qualities, like strength, loyalty, perseverance, kindness and intelligence. She just has to finish grinding her teeth at whatever facepalm inducing shenanigans they get up to first.

Senpais and Severe Migraines

If you think Fushiguro and Itadori (we’re not even touching Gojo) were bad enough, Nobara’s just about had it up to here with her senpais. Senpais are meant to be cool, respectable guides for their kouhais, so how did Nobara get stuck with this lot? From Panda stealing and wearing her gakuran (what’s with the Jujutsu High Men and female uniforms?) to Inumaki cross-dressing in her only respected senpai Maki’s skirt, to “falling practice” in preparation for the Goodwill Event, the second years don’t seem to be doing too hot as role models (except Maki, of course). Not to mention Yuuta Okkotsu being the entire reason Nobara didn’t get to go to Kyoto for the Goodwill Event (we can’t blame him for winning last year, but clearly Nobara can). Well, at the very least, she can respect their strength and Cursed Techniques as seen in the group battle event.

Meanwhile, the same can’t be said for the seniors from Kyoto Jujutsu High. From Todou’s intimidation tactics (read: senseless violence) and almost anti-feminist method of judging personality to Ultimate Mechamaru using a ball machine to pitch in the Goodwill Event Baseball Game because “technical issues,” Nobara can’t seem to catch a break with any of these dudes. The icing on the cake is Todou’s disturbing delusional brother complex toward Itadori after the event. Yep, Nobara is most certainly noping out before she has to deal with these guys again, and really, can you blame her?

Cursed Womb Bothers

And now we’re at the root of Nobara’s 99 problems. Without curses, Nobara wouldn’t have to deal with half (tbh, all) of the above-mentioned headaches. So let’s take a quick look back at the many curses which caused Nobara’s many grievances. While being teleported when reprimanding Fushiguro and Itadori for arguing unnecessarily in the first Cursed Womb to a room where she was outnumbered by a number of baby-headed curses was disturbing and having to deal with a city curse that took a child hostage due to its metropolitan intelligence was mildly irritating, nothing quite took the cake like the brothers Eso and Kechizu.

These two Death Paintings had extremely dangerous Cursed Techniques. As a result, not only were she and Itadori poisoned, but they also were set up to rot. If you think that Nobara would give in to such an annoying play, you’d be mistaken. No way was she gonna lose to a curse with a back complex. Sadly, she had to harm herself with her nails to get the brothers back at their own game which just added pain and rapid blood loss to an already extensive list of injuries. Not exactly a cakewalk, huh?

And finally, the last curse Nobara has a bone to pick with is one who probably enjoys them very much. Not only was he responsible for a dear (sort of) classmate’s untimely demise, he also ‘lives’ to aggravate others. Knowing that Yuuji had consumed a fair amount fingers, it was a group decision to not have him consume the most recently acquired one. Really, we think this one’s on her for not seeing it coming, how could the King of Curses not be on a list of grievances? Yes, Sukuna ate the newest finger, probably (definitely) out of spite. How annoying can a dude with a non-corporeal body of his own be? The answer is Very.


Final Thoughts

As Nobara has stated on previous occasions, the types of men she likes least are “useless, broke, smelly, stingy or dead.” Unfortunately for her, in the Jujutsu world, most of the men fit at least one if not all of those monikers. But in between the constant stream of headaches and facepalms, there are tender moments of friendship, affection, and respect for her teacher, classmates, and senpais (curses excluded) however few and far between they may be. Stay strong Nobara, and stick with Maki. And maybe take up meditation.

Let us know in the comments if you feel Nobara’s pain, or if you think we missed out on any other great moments from Jujutsu Kaisen!

by G