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Film Friday- Love Hina

Film Friday- Love Hina

A twenty-four episode anime adaptation of the manga series, produced by Xebec, aired in Japan from April 19, 2000, to September 27, 2000. It was followed by a bonus DVD episode, Christmas and Spring television specials, and a three episode original video animation (OVA) entitled Love Hina Again. The anime series, special, and OVA were licensed for release in North America by Bandai Entertainment. In July 2007, the license was acquired by Funimation, who released a boxset of the television series in February 2009. The series is also licensed in Australia by Madman Entertainment and in the United Kingdom by MVM Films.

In Japan, the television series was released on nine DVDs by Starchild Records between August 3, 2000 and April 2, 2001, and sold over 1 million copies. Love Hina is credited with being one of the first anime series to be available unofficially as a digitally produced fansub, with multiple groups working on the series. The popularity, and widespread availability of the series in this form meant that several potential licensors of the series such as ADV Films had concerns over licensing the series. The series was later licensed in North America by Bandai Entertainment, who released six DVDs between February 19 and November 19, 2002. In July 2007, Funimation Entertainment announced they had acquired the license to the series after Bandai’s license had expired. A new boxset of the television series across 4 discs was released by Funimation on February 24, 2009. It was then re-released as part of Funimation’s Viridian Collection on July 27, 2010. In the United Kingdom, the series is licensed by MVM Films, who released the series on six DVDs between September 6, 2004 and March 7, 2005, and as a boxset on May 14, 2007. In Australia and New Zealand the series is licensed by Madman Entertainment, who also released the series across six DVDs between September 18, 2002, and February 11, 2003. A box set was later released on December 3, 2003.

After the television series was completed, a Christmas special, Love Hina Xmas Eve: Silent Night, was produced and shown on December 25, 2000 on TV Tokyo. A DVD was released in Japan on July 4, 2001. It was then released in North America on December 3, 2002 and in the United Kingdom on November 7, 2005. The Spring Special Love Hina Spring Special: I Wish Your Dream was also shown on TV Tokyo on April 2, 2001. The DVD was released in Japan on August 1, 2001, in North American on March 18, 2003 and in the United Kingdom on May 16, 2005. Finally, an OVA series called Love Hina Again was released on DVD in Japan in 3 parts between January 26, 2002 and March 27, 2002. A CD single featuring the opening theme “Kirari Takaramono” and the ending theme “Be for Me, Be for You” was released on February 28, 2002. A solo version was used for the first episode, and a duet with Yūji Ueda was used for the third episode. The North American and United Kingdom releases of Love Hina Again grouped the 3 parts together on one disc and were released on September 2, 2003 and January 7, 2008 respectively.
After the end of the television series, Love Hina Final Selection was released, containing a summary of the series and “Love Live Hina”, a live concert featuring all of the main cast members.
The anime was later used as the source for a film comic, Love Hina Anime Comics, which told the anime story in comic form using stills from the show as the comic panels. The anime Comics series follows the story of the television series, unaired 25th episode, and the Xmas and Spring specials and each volume contains 3 exclusive trading cards. The film comics also contain anime production info.

Keitaro Urashima

is a 19/20-year-old second-year ronin studying to enter Tokyo University. As a child, the young Keitaro made a promise with a girl, based on a story the children overheard that two people who love each other will live “happily ever after” if they enter ‘Todai’. Keitaro is set on gaining entrance to Todai to fulfill the promise he made to his childhood friend, even though he cannot properly remember either her name or her face. Later, in volume 13, it is revealed that Todai may not even refer to Tokyo University after all.

After failing to pass the entrance exams on his second attempt Keitaro’s parents seem either unwilling, or unable, to let him continue living at home while he studies. He then receives a call from his grandmother. As a result, he travels to “Hinata Inn”, a hotel owned by his grandmother to find a place to stay and study. Following a misunderstanding where the residents believe him to be a burglar and peeping tom, Keitaro discovers the hotel is now a female-only dormitory.

To compound the confusion, Keitaro’s Aunt Haruka mistakenly assumes he has passed the entrance exams and is already a Todai student; consequently the residents agree he can stay. When he fails to correct her and is discovered to be lying, he is forced to leave until Haruka announces that the deeds to the inn have been transferred to Keitaro by his grandmother: Keitaro is, in fact, the new landlord.

Naru Narusegawa 

is a 17-year-old, just about to graduate from high school, and a resident of the Hinata Inn. She is very intelligent, having placed top in the nation in the college practice entrance exams at their cram school. She is popular, beautiful but constantly tries to hide this as she studies to gain entrance to Todai. However, she has an extremely fiery temper and has a tendency to inflict violent physical punishment (mostly on Keitaro). She arrived at the Hinata Inn as a result (she believes) of her friendship with Kitsune, who introduced her to Granny Hina. At that stage she does not remember staying at the Hinata Inn as a very young child.

Of all the girls at the Hinata Inn, she is most often the unwilling and unwitting victim of Keitaro’s clumsiness, which often results in her ending up naked, partially clothed, or placed in any number compromising positions. Keitaro invariably suffers as a result.

Despite initially taking a (literally) violent dislike to Keitaro, she comes to develop very strong feelings for him. The main part of her character arc is that she has great difficulty in admitting these feelings, both to herself, to the hopeless Keitaro and to the world in general. Due to this she often becomes annoyed or irritated with Keitaro when she believes he is not taking things seriously. Naru had repeatedly denied having feelings for Keitaro even when asked. Naru while speaking to Mutsumi has said “What could you possibly see in a guy like that? You probably don’t know this Mutsumi-san but he’s clumsy, stupid, and a total pervert that has no redeeming qualities whatsoever!”. She also says to Kanako she would definitely spy on him or sabotage any dates he did get but finds the idea of dating him herself disgusting. This comment and similar situations are played for laughs. When they do date, she hits Keitaro occasionally.. Like Keitaro, she strives to get into Tokyo University for two reasons: the first is a promise she made to her one-time tutor (and object of an enormous crush) Noriyasu Seta, the second is the dimly recalled promise made to someone whose name and face she cannot remember.

Manga Monday- Love Hina

Manga Monday- Love Hina

Love Hina is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Ken Akamatsu. It was serialized in Weekly Shōnen Magazine from October 21, 1998 to October 31, 2001, with the chapters collected into 14 tankōbon volumes by Kodansha. The series tells the story of Keitarō Urashima and his attempts to find the girl with whom he made a childhood promise to enter the University of Tokyo. The manga was licensed for an English-language release in North America and the United Kingdom by Tokyopop, in Australia by Madman Entertainment, and in Singapore by Chuang Yi. Two novelizations of Love Hina, written by two anime series screenwriters, were also released in Japan by Kodansha. Both novels were later released in North America and the United Kingdom by Tokyopop.

The series has proved extremely popular around the world, both commercially and critically. In Japan, the manga sold over 16 million copies; over 1 million anime DVDs were also sold. The English release of the manga has been reprinted many times. Both anime and manga have received numerous industry awards in Japan and North America, as well as praise from critics.

Reception

Love Hina won the Kodansha Manga Award for best shōnen title in 2001. It was selected as the “Best Manga, USA Release” at both the 2002 and 2004 Anime Expo conventions. In 2003, the title was among the top ten graphic novels on Nielsen BookScan’s list and one of the first graphic novels to ever appear in the general trade paperback list. The pop culture website ICv2 voted Love Hina “Anime Product of the Year” in 2002.

Production

Initial sketches for the series were created between September and December 1997, after the completion of A.I. Love You. Early storyboards with initial character designs were created between December 1997 and January 1998, and further character designs and location sketches followed between January and April 1998. The last storyboards before serialization were created between April and August 1998.

Around six months before the start of serialization, character designs were still going through several revisions before being settled upon. Several characters underwent complete redesigns and name changes. At one stage the character Naru was named Midori, and she was supposed to fall through a hole in the floor naked, bump her head on Keitaro and lose her memory. Naru’s name was changed many times before the author settled on Naru Narusegawa, and her final design is similar to Saati Namba from A.I. Love You. Mitsune “Kitsune” Konno’s money-grubbing nature and her older, jaded, and more mature personality were originally intended to be used for Kaolla Su. Shinobu Maehara’s nature was settled on from the beginning of the series, however her physical appearance and age were extensively redesigned as the series concept was shaped. In her early design, Shinobu had a similar appearance to Forty Namba from A.I. Love You.

Throughout the run of the manga, the series used digital editing processes. After a rough sketch of a page was created, the page layout and basic detail were drawn and scanned into an Apple Macintosh. The major page elements were then shaded or filled with patterns, and elements that were drawn separately were added digitally to the page. The manga also used a series of “banked images”, which were basic line drawings of locations, such as a characters room. Instead of redrawing a location from scratch every time it was used, these banked images could be used as a base, and extra detail added to them depending on the requirements for the scene.

Both of these techniques lead to characters having white outlines when copied digitally onto the scene. Parts of Hinata Inn and other locations used were inspired by real life locations and designed from photographs collected during research.

Plot

The story is a shōnen comedy that takes place in the Kanagawa Prefecture, and centers on Keitarō Urashima and his attempts to fulfill a childhood promise that he made with a girl to enter the University of Tokyo together. However, he has forgotten the name of the girl he made the promise to and hopes to be accepted into the university in order to find her. Having failed the entrance exam twice and with his parents no longer willing to support him, he goes to stay at his grandmother’s hotel, only to find that it has been converted into a female-only apartment. The tenants are about to kick him out when his aunt appears and announces that his grandmother has given him the title to the apartments. Much to their dismay Keitarō becomes the new manager of the family-owned girls’ dorm Hinata House and must now balance his new responsibilities in addition to studying for the university entrance exam.

At Hinata House, Keitarō meets Naru Narusegawa, who is also studying to enter the university. Naru ranks first in the whole of Japan on the practice exams, and Keitarō convinces her to help him study. As the two of them grow closer through their studies, and after Keitarō accidentally reads a small section of Naru’s diary, he becomes increasingly convinced that Naru may be the girl with whom he made the promise. On the second day of the university exam, Keitarō asks Naru about the promise and is stunned when she tells him he is mistaken. Despite their studying, and Naru’s mock exam results, they both fail the exams. The pair then have an argument and independently run off to Kyoto to clear their heads. While on their trip they settle their differences and meet Mutsumi Otohime, who lives in Okinawa and is also studying for the university exams.

After returning from Kyoto, Keitarō and Naru decide to retake the exams. After a while, Mutsumi moves to Tokyo, and the three begin to study together. During this period, Naru becomes convinced that Mutsumi is Keitarō’s promised girl, but Mutsumi states that she made a childhood promise with Naru, not Keitarō. During the next round of university exams, Keitarō believes he has failed them once again and runs away before finding out his results. After learning of this, Naru chases after him without checking her exam results either, and they are followed by the rest of the residents of Hinata House who announce that Keitarō and Naru both passed the exams along with Mutsumi. Unfortunately for him, Keitarō has an accident at the University of Tokyo opening ceremony and is unable to attend classes for three months. After recovering from his injuries, Keitarō decides to study overseas with Noriyasu Seta. As Keitarō is about to leave, Naru finally confesses her feelings to him at the airport and decides to wait for him to return.

When Keitarō returns, he and Naru finally begin to express their feelings for each other. After they deal with new obstacles, Grandma Hina returns to Hinata House and reveals Naru is the girl of Keitarō’s promise. Three years later, a wedding ceremony (with a new girl, Ema Maeda, presented) is held at Hinata House for Naru and Keitarō as they finally fulfill their childhood promise to each other.