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Hajime no Ippo - Outside the ring

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Fighting Spirit or Hajime no Ippo - Other cels
Hajime no Ippo, created by Morikawa Jyoji in 1990, is a very popular sports genre manga in Japan. Directed by Satoshi Nishimura (TRIGUN) HnI has been licensed by Geneon (formerly Pioneer) and runs 76 episodes of TV plus a movie and an OVA. Also, starting in 2009 a new series HNI "New Challenger".
The story is of Ippo Makunouchi a shy, gentle loner at school. Unable to hang out with his fellow classmates because he is too busy helping his mother run a family fishing boat service. Although strong for his age, he lacks the will and knowledge to fight back when bullied by some of his school mates. After one such attack by the bullies, he is saved by Takamura Mamoru, a professional boxer. This starts Ippo on his course to becoming a professional boxer. The story follows him on that quest.

"The story for HnI is fairly straight-forward, with few twists or surprises in the plot.? It won't wow people weaned on the likes of Neon Genesis Evangelion or Rurouni Kenshin.? However, fans of old-school story-telling will dig the un-complex "coming of age" tale and colorful character roster, the latter of which being where this series really stands out.? The cast of HnI has the right balance of goofballs and archetypes, thereby fulfilling every otaku's daily requirement.? Everyone will have a favorite character, be it the mysterious Miyata or the lovable old grump Kamogawa.? It's fun to watch Ippo grow up as the series goes on and discover his own path in life, occasionally getting sidetracked by his sempai's pranks." -Otaku Herald
As for animation style, "there are really two Hajime no Ippos: There's the anime that you normally watch, which has a simple yet unique style and standard of high quality.? Then there's the fighting scenes (roughly 70% of the show), which will blow you away with the sheer detail and fluidity.? You can (sometimes literally) see a character's muscles flex and strain as he throws a haymaker punch.? The wind whipping around and the spray of sweat that flies off someone's body is quite possibly the best animation effect in the entire show.? There are no super special signature moves or glowing aura power-ups.? Every punch you see the characters throw is based on what people can actually do, and it's all rendered in gloriously realistic fashion." -Otaku Herald
Personally I like the straight forward simple manga style to the artwork. Surprisingly, for a fighting show the anime is not as bloody as say, Grappler Baki. And given the fact that the manga is still going, I think HnI could run as long as the Dragon Ball series. I will place the cels in the order shown in the series, but for now please just enjoy the cels.

 Makunouchi Hiroko and Ippo


 Mr. Miyata


 Japan Featherweight Title Match



 Shocked Coach

 Yusuke Oda


 Tip of the hat

 Coach Kamogawa

 Ippo and Kumi

 The Bear!

 Takamura-san vs the Bear

 At Aoki’s work

 Ippo & Coach

 Ippo and Takamura

 In the stands





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Gallery Created: 3/13/2002
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