- Love Hina
caption = Cover of volume 1 of the Japanese version of "Love Hina"
ja_name = ラブ ひな
ja_name_trans = Rabu Hina
Comedy, Ecchi, HaremInfobox animanga/Manga
publisher = flagicon|Japan
publisher_en = flagicon|United States flagicon|Canada flagicon|UK
publisher_other = flagicon|Brazil
flagicon|France flagicon|Quebec flagicon|Switzerland
Grupo Editorial Vid
Tong Li Comics
flagicon|Australia flagicon|New Zealand
flagicon|Denmark Carlsen comics
Weekly Shōnen Magazine
October 21, 1998
October 31, 2001
volumes = 14
chapter_list = List of Love Hina chaptersInfobox animanga/Anime
director = Yoshiaki Iwasaki
licensor = flagicon|Japan
Bandai Entertainment, FUNimation
flagicon|Australia flagicon|New Zealand
network = flagicon|Japan
network_other = flagicon|Taiwan
China Television, JET TV
Cartoon Network, Play TV
GMA 7, QTV, Hero TV
April 19, 2000
September 27, 2000
episodes = 25
episode_list = List of Love Hina episodesInfobox animanga/OVA
title = Love Hina – Christmas Special
director = Yoshiaki Iwasaki
music = Star Child Records
released = flagicon|Japan
December 25 2000
December 3, 2003
runtime = 44 minutesInfobox animanga/OVA
title = Love Hina – Spring Special
director = Yoshiaki Iwasaki
music = Star Child Records
released = flagicon|Japan
April 1 2001
February 11, 2004
runtime = 45 minutesInfobox animanga/OVA
title = Love Hina Again
director = Yoshiaki Iwasaki
episodes = 3
released = flagicon|USA
September 2 2003
August 31, 2005nihongo|"Love Hina"|ラブ ひな|Rabu Hina is a Japanese mangaseries written and illustrated by Ken Akamatsu. It was originally serialized in " Weekly Shōnen Magazine" from October 21, 1998 through October 31, 2001 and was published in 14 " tankōbon" volumes by Kodansha. The series details the daily life of Keitaro Urashima as he attempts to find the girl he made a childhood promise to and enter Tokyo University. The manga is licensed for an English language release in North America and the United Kingdom by Tokyopopand in Singapore by Chuang Yi.
A twenty-four episode anime adaptation of the anime series, produced by
Xebec, aired in Japan from April 19, 2000 on September 27, 2000. It was followed by a bonus dvd episode, two television specials, and a three episode original Video Animation(OVA) entitled "Love Hina Again". The anime series, special, and OVA was licensed for release in North America by Bandai Entertainment. In July 2007, the license was acquired by Funimation Entertainment, and will be re-releasing the series and movies using Bandai's original English language dubbing and subtitles.
Two novelizations of "Love Hina", written by two anime series screenwriters, were also released in Japan. Both novels have been released in North America by Tokyopop.
The story is a
shōnencomedy that takes place in the Kanagawa Prefecture, and centers on Keitaro Urashima, in his attempts to fulfill a childhood promise that he made with a girl to enter Tokyo Universitytogether. However, he has forgotten the name of the girl and hopes to be accepted into Tokyo university in order to find her. Although he has already failed the entrance exam twice, He becomes manager of the family owned nihongo|"Hinata House"|日向荘|Hinata Sō|also known as "Hinata Apartments" which is now an all girls dorm, and must balance his new responsibility's with his attempts to pass the university entrance exam and find the girl he made the promise with.
Being an all girls dorm, there is initially some strong objection to Keitaro becoming the manager and he is disliked initially by most of the residents, however he eventually wins their respect and eventual affection. However Keitaro is often involved in misunderstandings and is often physically and mentally punished for comedic effect. Keitaro's primary (and usually exclusive) interest is in Naru Narusegawa, though all the other girls have different sorts of affections for him (including close friend, a playmate, and non-threatening crush object). Keitaro and Naru's relationship is complicated by their own mistakes and misunderstandings, the other residents and daily events.
Keitaro Urashima|浦島 景太郎|Urashima Keitarō : anime voices|Yūji Ueda|Derek Stephen PrinceKeitaro Urashima is a 20-year-old cram-school student who is desperately trying to get into University of Tokyoin order to fulfill a childhood promise he made to a girl 15 years ago. This proves to be very difficult since he has terrible luck, bad studying habits, and can't grasp the material as well as others leading him to fail the exam three times making him a third-year ronin. His grandmother later grants him ownership of the Hinata Inn, a girl's dormatory. His clumsiness lands him into deep trouble with the girls at the Hinata Inn as he is prone to accidentally seeing them naked or tripping and touching them inappropriately. Despite his flaws, he is well-meaning, friendly, and very determined, traits which eventually wins all of the girls' hearts. His developing relationship with Naru is focal point of the story. He confesses his love for her and they start down a rather bumpy relationship. He finally gets accepted into University of Tokyo, keeping his promise to Naru, and travels with Seta on his archeology trips.
Naru Narusegawa|成瀬川 なる|Narusegawa Naru : anime voices|Yui Horie|Dorothy Elias-FahnNaru Narusegawa is a 17-year-old (18 in anime) student and resident of the Hinata Inn that can be described as "one fuse short of a cannon" because of her extremely fiery temper and tendency to be very physical, mainly with Keitaro whenever she feels he's acting perverted. Of all the girls in the Hinata House, she is victimized the most by Keitaro's clumsiness which often results in her being naked, exposed in some fashion, or lying in very suggestive positions. Throughout most of high school she studied hard and became tops in the nation on the college practice exams in order to get into Tokyo University. Because of her intense study regime, she became majorly short-sighted and has to wear thick "coke-bottle glasses" when not wearing her contacts. She developed feelings for Keitaro, however, was unable to admit it to herself or anyone else for a long time. Despite overcoming this and confessing her love, hitting Keitaro whenever he got "too close" had become involuntary and second nature. Later in the story after a misunderstanding, we find out that she is actually the person Keitaro promise to go into University of Tokyo.
; nihongo|Mutsumi Otohime|乙姫 むつみ|Otohime Mutsumi : anime voices|Satsuki Yukino|Julie Ann TaylorMutsumi Otohime is a gentle, frail, clumsy and soft-spoken 21-year-old girl who lives in
Okinawa. Mutsumi is prone to catatonic fainting spells that makes her appear as though she has died. She is also described by the others as being sisterly, kind and caring, yet a ditz. Like Keitaro, she is a third-year ronin trying for Tokyo University. However, her reasons for failing are because of simple mistakes such as not putting her name on the test or succumbing to her anemia and fainting during the exam. In the manga and anime she, along with Naru, was a childhood friend of Keitaro with whom she promised to go to Tokyo U together. Mutsumi has an affinity for watermelons and turtles and gave a latter one, Tama-chan, to Keitarō and Naru as a gift. Mutsumi has eight brothers and sisters and has a striking resemblance to her mother. She is called the "female version of Keitaro" due to their shared clumsiness. When Kanako begins to run the Hinata house, Mutsumi disguises herself as Keitaro to test the girls on their hostess skills; the resemblance is so uncanny that momentarily even Naru is fooled.
; nihongo|Shinobu Maehara|前原 しのぶ|Maehara Shinobu : anime voices|Masayo Kurata|Bridget HoffmanShinobu Maehara is a 13 -year old middle school student who is very shy. She loves to clean and cook and takes care of most of the chores around the Hinata Inn. Despite a bad and embarrassing first start with Keitaro which included him accidentally exposing himself and lying to her she develops a crush on him, calling him
sempaias a sign of her admiration and respect. Unlike the other girls of the Hinata Inn, Shinobu is not prone to hitting Keitarō, rather she ends up getting emotional and crying thus making Keitarō feel guilty. In the manga, Shinobu was already a resident at Hinata while in the anime she moves in after Keitaro's arrival due to family strife causing her parents to divorce (in the manga they end up reconciling upon her visit back home). In direct contrast to the other girls of the house, as the manga reached it's close Shinobu developed the habit of hitting Keitaro as well, though by this point in the story the attacks from the others had lessened (aside from Naru).
; nihongo|Motoko Aoyama|青山 素子|Aoyama Motoko : anime voices|Yū Asakawa|Mona MarshallMotoko Aoyama is a 15-year-old high school girl who is very formal and into
kendo, to the point that her room resembles that of a samurai's (complete with a suit of armor). She claims lineage to a school of demonslaying swordsmen and also displays a prodigious competence with her katana. She can often wreak great damage to boulders or other objects using nothing more than her wooden practice sword (and even decks Keitarō and two of his friends with an umbrella). Motoko is very terrified of her sister, Tsuruko, whose skill far exceeds her own, and has a phobia of turtles that is left unexplained for the majority of the series. In one of the later episodes, it is suggested that her fear of turtles was due to being attacked by a demon in the form of a monstrous turtle while assisting her older sister in combat as a child. She disapproves of Keitarō early on, on the basis of him being a letch and a weakling, but later develops a grudging respect and eventually a hidden affection for him (much to her chagrin). She is at first uncomfortable with her femininity, partially because her sister left her sword for a husband, partially because of her height: she is the tallest person in the house, 4 cm taller than Keitaro. She later becomes more open due to Keitaro's influence. Whatever her feelings for Keitarō happen to be at a given time, she still frequently threatens or attacks him with her sword. In the later volumes of the manga version, she discovers that she has a talent for writing erotic romance stories while she fantasizes about having a relationship with Keitaro. It is implied during the epilogue chapter of the manga during a conversation with Shinobu that writing such stories is how she supports herself during her college years.
; nihongo|Kaolla Su|カオラ スゥ|Kaora Sū : anime voices|Reiko Takagi|Wendee LeeA 13-year-old foreign transfer student. She is very playful, inattentive, and shows absolutely no signs of maturing. Her childlike spirit, when combined with her boundless amounts of energy, sometimes yields downright abusive results (usually on Keitarō), though she usually maintains an indestructible air of innocence. Despite her immaturity, she is a genius technician, capable of whipping up the most outrageous devices in a jiffy – including various robot versions of Tama-chan called "Mecha-Tamago" and a vast array of weapons. During certain times – red moon phenomena – she transforms into a more adult version of herself. She can usually be found with Sara, the only cast member as hyperactive as she is. Her country of origin remained a source of speculation throughout the series and manga, as she reveals that she is not South Asian. The manga featured a volume involving a trip to Su's homeland, known as Molmol Island where Su is actually the royal princess. Su's older sister makes an appearance in the series, where it is revealed that she has an older brother (whom it seems she likens to Keitaro, explaining why of all the Hinata girls Su's attraction to Keitaro is the least romantic). ; nihongo|Mitsune Konno|紺野 みつね|Konno Mitsune|, also known as nihongo|Kitsune|キツネ: anime voices| Junko Noda | Barbara Goodson Mitsune Konno, mostly called by her nickname "
Kitsune" (which means "fox" in Japanese), is a scheming 20-year-old freelance writer (and is conspicuous in her lack of writing). A model example of a parasite single, Kitsune lives to enjoy the easy life, and frequently scams others by any means possible. She is frequently drunk, and bottles can be found hidden all over her room. Her greatest joy seems to be teasing Keitarō, even though she clearly cares for him. She is a school friend of Naru and tries her best (or worst) to make Keitarō and Naru get married. In order to maintain her finances, she often bets on horse races. In the anime, Kitsune speaks with an Osaka accent, (in the English anime, with a Southern accent) which seems to imply a connection between her sly, money-minded personality and a common stereotype about people who hail from that region. Her appearance is even typical of a fox, having slanted eyes that never seem to be open.
; nihongo|Kanako Urashima|浦島 可奈子|Urashima Kanako : anime voices| Natsuko Kuwatani | Melissa Fahn Kanako Urashima, 17, is Keitarō's adopted younger sister. She traveled with her grandmother for some years, and returned to Japan to fulfill her promise to her adopted brother (with whom she is in love), and to change the girls dormitory back into an inn. She is very adept at bondage and disguising as other members of the Hinata apartment – except when it comes to imitating Naru's smile – and also has an intense dislike for sweets. In addition, she also bears something of a resemblance to Motoko, as they have a similar hair color, eye color, measurements, the two can jump outstanding distances, and they both can generate "ki." Additionally, she has a black cat named Kuro who can fly with his oversized ears. To give Kanako dialogue early on in her introduction while the Hinata girls are still hostile to her, Kanako converses with Kuro, and even practices ventriloquism to hold a full conversation with him.
Production on the manga began at least six months before the start of serialization.cite book |last=Akamatsu |first=Ken |authorlink=Ken Akamatsu |title=Love Hina, Volume 1 |publisher=
TokyoPop|date=2002-05-07 |pages=p. 187 |isbn=1931514941 ] Initial character designs went through several revisions before being settled upon, with several characters undergoing complete redesigns and name changes.
For example, 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. This scenario was changed to happen to Mutsumi. Naru's name was changed many times before the author settled on Narusegawa Naru. [cite book |last=Akamatsu |first=Ken |authorlink=Ken Akamatsu |title=Love Hina, Volume 1 |publisher=
TokyoPop|date=2002-05-07 |pages=p. 188 |isbn=1931514941 ] , Kitsune's money-grubbing nature and her older, jaded, and more mature personality were originally slated to be used for Kaolla Su.cite book |last=Akamatsu |first=Ken |authorlink=Ken Akamatsu |title=Love Hina, Volume 1 |publisher= TokyoPop|date=2002-05-07 |pages=p. 191 |isbn=1931514941 ] Shinobu Maehara's nature was settled on from the beginning of the series, however her physical appearance and age was extensively redesigned as the series concept was shaped. [cite book |last=Akamatsu |first=Ken |authorlink=Ken Akamatsu |title=Love Hina, Volume 1 |publisher= TokyoPop|date=2002-05-07 |pages=p. 193 |isbn=1931514941 ]
During the run of the manga, a library of set backgrounds, called "banked images", were used to make production easier.cite book |last=Akamatsu |first=Ken |authorlink=Ken Akamatsu |title=Love Hina, Volume 14 |publisher=
TokyoPop|date=2003-09-16 |pages=pp. 151—152 |isbn=1591821207]
Xebec approached Yoshiaki Iwasaki to direct the Anime adaptation, however he had not previously read the manga. After he was approached, Iwasaki purchased and read the manga before agreeing to direct the show because he found it so interesting.cite web |url=http://www.animaxis.com/en/zine/reports/lovehinainterview/lovehinainterview_01.asp |title=Animaxis Interview with Yoshiaki Iwasaki |publisher=Animaxis |date=2001-11-07 |accessdate=2008-09-23] Verify credibility|date=September 2008 Ken Akamatsu requested that the Anime and Manga be "separate entities", allowing the anime to introduce new characters and tell the story differently.
The 118 individual chapters of "Love Hina" were originally serialized in "
Weekly Shōnen Magazine", premiering in the October 21, 1998 issue and running weekly until its conclusion in the October 31, 2001 issue. The chapters were collected and published in 14 " tankōbon" volumes by Kodansha.
The series is licensed for an English language release in
North Americaand the United Kingdomby Tokyopop, which released the 14 volumes between May 21, 2002 and September 16, 2003. It is also licensed for an English language release in Singapore by Chuang Yiand for regional language releases in Franceand Québecby Pika Édition, in Spainby Glénat, in Singaporeby Chuang Yi, in Brazilby Editora JBC, in Mexico by Grupo Editorial Vid, in Poland by Waneko, in Greece by Compupress, in Germanyin German, and in Swedenand Norwayby Egmont Manga & Anime.
There were 25 episodes produced for the animated television series. The TV series, movies and OVA were all directed by
Yoshiaki Iwasakiand animated by XEBECwith character designs by Makoto Unoand Meiju Maeda(for Love Hina Again) and scripts mainly written by Sho Aikawa. While many of the episodes are based on early chapters of the manga, the anime introduced several minor characters not in the manga and many details were changed in how the events developed. The story is fairly consistent from episode 1 to 24, where it rises to a climax. However, towards the end of the series, the anime deviates from the manga due to the anime catching up on the manga.
After the Tv run finished, a 25th episode was released on dvd. While the 25th episode may seem an unexpected and unnatural adjunct to the plot, it is because it was meant to be the first episode of another series of 24, which would have generally rounded out the story of the series. The reason that no more episodes beyond 25 were produced is because the production company unexpectedly ran out of budget to continue it. In Japan, a special 26th episode ran after the recording of Love Hina, along with "Love Live Hina", a live concert including all the (female) seiyū who participated in the successful run of the series. The 26th episode was only an entire overview of the previous 25 episodes packed into one.
Due to the success of the series several specials were made for Christmas and Spring, and eventually the final three part OVA series called "
Love Hina Again". Although Love Hina Again develops Naru's and Keitaro's relationship, it does not bring the story to a conclusion, leaving the story open in animated form. All of these specials have a basis in the manga, although the Christmas special is mostly new material
However, the story had not ended at the OVA, for those who had purchased the Love Hina Again Original Soundtrack, there were drama tracks at the beginning of the CD, which is in fact, the OVA episode 4. It is entirely in Japanese, but it takes place where the OVA episode 3 left off.Fact|date=September 2008.
nihongo|"Love Hina Again"|ラブひなAgain|Rabu Hina Agēn is a three episode
OVAthat takes place after "Love Hina: Spring Special", and thus expands the "Love Hina" anime story. Of special note is the art-style and risque humor of the OVA more closely resembles the manga than the anime, which can surprise some fans. In fact, it seems to follow the storyline of the manga more so than it follows the anime, as the story in "Love Hina Again" is loosely based on volumes 11 and 12 of the manga.
Keitaro Urashima has been accepted into the
University of Tokyoand his adopted sister, Kanako Urashima becomes the new manager of Hinata Inn. The denizens are not pleased with Kanako's rather intrusive and sneaky methods and wish for Keitaro's return. When he does reappear however, Kanako reveals that he had made a promise with her to go to the annex so that they can be together forever. Though Keitaro thinks of her only as a sister, she does not see him as a brother; her goal is to win his love. (In anime, fictional adopted sister relationships are dramatic or humor fodder and generally not treated as incest.) Naru and Keitaro are nearly torn apart by her efforts, but manage to win out in the end by destroying the cursed Hinata annex, following which Naru finally declares her true feelings for Keitaro in front of the other girls.
Critics and fans have also taken note of the increase in
fan service, with some deeming it excessive Fact|date=September 2008.
Two novelizations, both named "Love Hina: The Novel" and written by the series' anime screenwriters; volume 1 was written by nihongo|Shō Aikawa|會川 昇|Aikawa Shō under the pen name nihongo|"
Kurō Hazuki"|葉月 九ロウ|Hazuki Kurō and volume 2 by nihongo| Hiroyuki Kawasaki|川崎 ヒロユキ|Kawasaki Hiroyuki.
"Love Hina" won the
Kodansha Manga Awardfor best " shōnen" title in 2001.cite web | url=http://www.hahnlibrary.net/comics/awards/kodansha.php | author=Joel Hahn | title=Kodansha Manga Awards | work=Comic Book Awards Almanac | accessdate=2007-08-21] It was selected as the "Best Manga, USA Release" at both the 2002 and 2004 Anime Expoconventions.cite web | url=http://www.activeanime.com/html/content/view/2547/71/ | first=Sandra |last=Scholes | title=Love Hina Again DVD Review |publisher=Active Anime |date=2008-01-15 |accessdate=2008-09-31] cite web |url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/convention/2004/anime-expo/13 |first=Christopher |last=Macdonald |title=Anime Expo 2004 awards |publisher= Anime News Network|date=2004-09-19 |accessdate=2008-09-23] In 2003, the title was among the top ten graphic novels on Nielsen BookScan's list and one of the the first graphic novels to ever appear in the general trade paperback list. [cite web |last=Spurgeon |first=Tom |date=2003-06-30 |url=http://www.comicsreporter.com/index.php/resources/longbox/108/ |title=The Comics Reporter News: Report from BEA 2003 |publisher=Comics Reporter |accessdate=2006-06-02 ]
The series was well received by critics. Tony Chen, of
Anime News Network(ANN), found it to be funny series, though inappropriate for readers under 16 due to the number of jokes involving sexual innuendo. He praised the beautiful artwork, feeling the "sexy and cute" female designs were perfect for the series and that Keitaro's design fit his dorky personality. Chen found Naru's regularly catching Keitaro making a mistake and calling him a pervert redundant and annoying. [cite web |url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/review/love-hina-gn-1-5 |title=Love Hina GN 1-5 - Review |publisher= Anime News Network|first=Tony |last=Chen |date=2009-09-17 |accessdate=2008-01-14]
ANN's Bamboo Dong paired the anime adaptation for being very intriguing and mixing "drama, romance, and slapstick comedy in a pleasing combination". He found the music "incredibly cute" and felt it was used in a way which contributed to many of the dramatic effects in the anime. [cite web |url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/review/love-hina |title=Love Hina - Review |publisher=
Anime News Network|first=Bamboo |last=Dong |accessdate=2008-01-14] The "Love Hina Again" VOA received more mixed reviews, with critics feeling it reversed part of the plot of the main anime series and never reached the same entertainment level as the television series. The character of Kanako, Keitaro's sister, was heavily criticized for being "one of the most annoying characters ever created even though she would have been better for Keitaro than Naru." [cite web |url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/review/love-hina-again/dvd |title=Love Hina Again DVD - Review |publisher= Anime News Network|first=Zac |last=Bertschy |date=2003-10-30 |accessdate=2008-01-14]
*ann manga|id=1564|title=Love Hina
*ann anime|id=168|title=Love Hina
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