When you consider the sports genre, a lot of masterpieces spring to mind. Among the most well-known are Cowboy Bebop, Gurren Lagann, Steins; Gate, and others. Hajime no Ippo, perhaps the finest sports Anime ever made, undoubtedly qualifies as an Anime classic.
Along with One Piece from Weekly Shonen Jump, Hajime no Ippo is one of the longest-running Manga series ever, and it is also known for its consistently excellent quality.
|Directed by||Satoshi Nishimura|
|Genre||Shonen, Sports, Action|
What exactly is Hajime no Ippo?
George Morikawa is the author and designer of the Japanese boxing manga series Hajime no Ippo.
Kodansha has serialized it in the shnen manga magazine Weekly Shnen Magazine since October 1989, and it has been collected into 136 tankbon volumes as of November 2022. It tells the narrative of Makunouchi Ippo, a high school student who starts a boxing career and eventually wins multiple titles and defeats many opponents.
From October 2000 through March 2002, a 76-episode anime adaptation produced by Madhouse broadcast on Nippon TV. In 2003, a television film and an original video animation (OVA) were publicized. A second series, Hajime no Ippo: New Challenger, broadcast from January to June 2009.
Who is Ippo Makunouchi?
Ippo Makunouchi is the central character in Hajime no Ippo. He is a trainer, a former featherweight JBC champion, and a retired featherweight professional boxer from the Kamogawa Boxing Club.
He originally started boxing to attempt and answer one simple question: “What does it mean to be strong?”. He has established vendettas against Ichir Miyata, Takeshi Send, and Ry Mashiba, as well as a brotherly affinity with Mamoru Takamura, Masaru Aoki, and Tatsuya Kimura, and a great trust for his instructor, Genji Kamogawa, for whom he wishes to become a world champion in order to honor the coach’s teachings.
He became a trainer after retiring from boxing, working as a second for his gym mates while training Taihei Aoki and Kintar Kaneda.
What is Hajime no Ippo all about?
Ippo is a frequent victim of merciless bullies who often beat and bruise him due to his timidity, lack of sleep, and the scent of the sea.
Ippo is rescued from a violent after-school incident by upcoming fighter Mamoru Takamura, who then brings him back to the Kamogawa Boxing Gym for rehabilitation.
Ippo’s blows startle Takamura and his teammate’s fighters Masaru Aoki and Tatsuya Kimura because he has big muscles from years of working in his physically demanding family business.
Ippo impresses the other boxers in a practice battle against prodigy Ichirou Miyata after receiving some brief instructions from Takamura.
He acquires a foe in Miyata and a trainer in gym owner and former boxer Genji Kamogawa.
Ippo goes up against a number of difficult opponents, each one stronger than the previous, as he begins his professional boxing career.
On his quest for greatness, Ippo will face triumph, defeat, and a cycle of committed training.
The good-hearted young man wants to take on the world with his strong physique and unbreakable fighting spirit.
Is Hajime no Ippo Good?
Yes, it is.
Every character that the Anime presents is used well, and you can connect to them on a deep level. For instance, Takamura’s desire to win a championship and become a hero, Ippo’s increased determination and self-assurance, and Miyata’s desire to demonstrate the superiority of his father’s boxing technique.
The characters all have origin tales that explain how they got to be fighters, yet you can still identify with them because of the way they still go about their daily lives and deal with difficulties that genuine boxers would deal with, such as Takamura’s weight management.
Regarding the pacing, yes, the Anime is lengthy and the Manga is even longer, but both are equally paced.
After a certain point, I believe Morikawa-sensei’s intention is to tell a life story in the same way Araki-sensei does with Jojo, and you really start to feel that as well as the characters’ development to the point where you occasionally find yourself emotionally reacting or caring about what might happen to them.
Additionally, the soundtrack is quite amazing and unquestionably something that Manga plainly lacks. You can truly emotionally respond to the footage in the opening themes and to the situations whenever they are played as background music in the Anime itself because of the heavy, passionate mood of Under Star and Inner Light.
Except for the fact that I thought the bodies seemed blockier and huge than they needed to be in compared to the Manga, the visual style is quite close to that of the Manga.
Additionally, I’ve been to Kourakuen Hall and the surrounding areas several times before, and I competed there in a judo competition, so I thought that was really awesome.
As a result, I can attest to the accuracy of the representation of these locations. Ippo comes up with wacky techniques and is a beast, so the training sessions with him are some of my favorites.
Why is Hajime no Ippo so underrated?
Early in the new millennium, Hajime no Ippo was rather popular.
Although it wasn’t as well-known as Naruto, One Piece, or other shonen genre mainstays, it was nonetheless quite well-known thanks to decades of superb Manga and its eventual successful Anime adaptation.
In the 1990s, it wasn’t exactly Slam Dunk levels of wild, but everyone in the Anime world knew about and adored Ippo.
However, things started to really slow down in the middle of the 2010s once they ceased animating new narrative arcs after the fourth Anime series.
The Manga was likewise suffering from a severe deterioration at this point. After Ippo lost against Date and Morikawa began focusing less on Ippo and more on supporting characters like Aoki and Kimura, the fourth Anime series was animating the tale after the series’ apex.
Ippo spends a lot of time during this period battling pointless opponents like Malcolm Gedo or Wally, whose clumsy boxing techniques are a far cry from the semi-realistic battles that made the Manga’s earlier sections so amazing.
Furthermore, for hundreds of chapters at a time, Takamura steals the show while Takamura’s side characters receive all the attention.
After a long, grueling, and agonizingly drawn-out rehabilitation and training storyline, Guevarra retires after he finally makes it to the world stage to finally have the rematch with Miyata. The fight does not go through, and he eventually loses to the world-ranked Gonzalez.
Is Hajime no Ippo a classic?
Hajime no Ippo achieved enormous success when it first started serializing in 1989, with the Manga ranking among the best-selling Manga series of all time.
It follows the story of shy high school student Makunouchi Ippo, who is one day saved by middleweight professional boxer Mamoru Takamura from a mob of bullies. Ippo discovers a natural ability and love for boxing after Takumura brings him to the Kamogawa Gym and lets him vent his anger on a sandbag.
This inspires him to take up boxing seriously as a vocation. Over the course of the series, Ippo confronts a variety of opponents and battles his own demons as he embarks on his road to becoming a great boxer.
Naturally, very few of us are true professional boxers or sportsmen. Ippo is a really relatable guy, though. In addition to being a professional boxer and all-around athlete, he is still a high school student striving to make it in life.
He used to be pretty shy, be picked on at school, and spend all of his free time working for his mother’s company. But through boxing, he ultimately discovers his passion and, consequently, himself.
This not only boosts his confidence and gives him a goal to focus on, but it also helps him become a better person.
Giving Ippo deserving challenges to overcome is essential to the success and intrigue of this Anime series, especially during the boxing fights.
If the main character of this series simply crashed past each of his opponents with his sheer natural brilliance alone, they would all be far less exciting to watch.
Everyone would be shocked by the results of the bouts, with the exception of the spectator. Ippo continuously runs into tougher opponents, and he can only get the results he wants by working out more and more. And when he succeeds, it is usually in games that are incredibly close.
Similar to several other shonen Manga and Anime series, the main storyline consistently seeks to inspire viewers, mostly through the characters. Particularly in the case of Hajime no Ippo and its central character Ippo Makunouchi.
Like Ippo, hardly every Shonen is able to leave a lasting impression on the audience.
The Anime’s narrative, which follows Ippo, the main character, throughout, demonstrates to the audience how many goals may be attained with hard work, perseverance, and training.
- Hajime no Ippo, perhaps the finest sports Anime ever made, undoubtedly qualifies as an Anime classic. Along with One Piece from Weekly Shonen Jump, it is one of the longest-running Manga series ever, and it is also known for its consistently excellent quality.
- On his quest for greatness, Ippo will face triumph, defeat, and a cycle of committed training. The good-hearted young man wants to take on the world with his strong physique and unbreakable fighting spirit.
- The Anime’s narrative, which follows Ippo, the main character, throughout, demonstrates to the audience how many goals may be attained with hard work, perseverance, and training.