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Suzuka (涼風?) is a Japanese manga written and illustrated by Kouji Seo. The series is a character-driven romance story that uses the athletics of track and field as a subplot. The story primarily follows the life of the teenager Yamato Akitsuki, who moved to Tokyo to change himself, and his main love interest Suzuka Asahina, a talented and highly scouted high jumper who lives in Yamato's aunt's dormitory and attends his new high school.

Suzuka was serialized in the Japanese magazine Weekly Shōnen Magazine published by Kodansha. It was adapted into a twenty-six episode anime series and aired on TV Tokyo in Japan between 6 July 2005 and 28 December 2005. Both versions of the series have been licensed for release in North America by two different companies. The manga has been licensed for publication by Del Rey Manga under their mature line. The anime series has been licensed and is being released by FUNimation Entertainment.

Suzuka has also made the transition into other media. A twenty-six episode anime directed by Hiroshi Fukutomi and co-produced by Studio Comet and Marvelous Entertainment ran from July through December 2005. The anime was later translated into English and released on DVD by Funimation Entertainment. Two light novels written by Ayuna Fujisaki based on the series have also been released. A sequel series, A Town Where You Live, has been running in Weekly Shonen Magazine since June 2008.


Suzuka is a sports-themed romance comedy that intertwines the pursuit of love and athletics. The story is based around Yamato Akitsuki, a young man from the rural Hiroshima Prefecture moving to the big city of Tokyo, and his new next-door neighbor, Suzuka Asahina, a skilled high jumper. Yamoto falls in love with Suzuka and pursuing a relationship with her he joins the track and field team hoping to impress her. After joining, Yamoto discovers that he has the potential to become a top hundred-meter sprinter.

Suzuka's character-driven plot predominantly makes use of dramatic structure to facilitate character development. Characterization is further achieved through the use of character back-story. The story in general employs a realistic tone, but occasionally uses surreal humour. Some events covered in the story are: track competitions, vacations, culture festivals, and outings to a Karaoke Box and a theme park. The manga and anime follow the same storyline, though there are minor differences. One of these changes is that the nude scenes are less graphic in the anime than the manga. Another disparity is the hair color of some of the characters such as the character Miki, who is depicted as having bright red hair on the covers of the manga, but is portrayed with brown hair in the anime.


Yamato Akitsuki, the main protagonist of the series, has moved from his home in the Hiroshima Prefecture to stay at his aunt's dormitory in Tokyo. Yamato falls in love with his new next-door neighbor, Suzuka Asahina, a girl from Yokohama who was scouted by a local high school because of her high jump athletic ability.[1] While the main female lead remains Suzuka throughout the series, Yamoto later meets several other girls: Honoka Sakurai, a girl whose family caretakes a local Shinto shrine, Miki Hashiba, a sprinter and friend of Suzuka, and others. Yamato also develops a friendship with Yasunobu Hattori, a perverted young man[2] who dreams about polygamy and often gives relationship advice to Yamato.



The Suzuka manga first appeared as an initial one shot in the Japanese manga magazine Weekly Shōnen Magazine, published by Kodansha, during December 2003.[3] It was first serialized in Weekly Shōnen Magazine on 3 March 2004 and was completed on 21 September 2007,[4] with one hundred sixty-six chapters in total. The chapters were compiled in eighteen bound volumes by Kodansha,[5] with each volume being released roughly quarterly. These volumes often include character profiles or extra stories. Suzuka has been licensed for North American publication by Del Rey, becoming the publisher's first sports manga and second title to be added under its mature line, the first being the manga Basilisk. Eleven volumes have been released in English with the first volume released on 29 August 2006[6] and the last 24 February 2009[7] with the twelfth volume released 25 August 2009.[8] According to Del Rey's website, "Suzuka 13/14/15" will be released in North America on August 31st, 2010. Though no images are available, you can pre-order the 592 page set for $21.99.


In April 2005, Weekly Shōnen Magazine announced through their website that Suzuka was being adapted into an anime.[9] The animated TV series was directed by Hiroshi Fukutomi and was co-produced by Studio Comet and Marvelous Entertainment. The twenty-six half-hour episode series originally aired weekly on TV Tokyo in Japan on Wednesdays running from 6 July 2005[10] to 28 December 2005.[11] The anime follows relatively close to the first seventy-two chapters of the manga, but some scenes were removed or subdued because of the nudity, such as scenes in the bath house. The anime was dubbed in the Tagalog language and broadcast by the Philippine station Hero starting on 3 December 2006.[12] The anime series has been licensed for North America by FUNimation,[13] and released with the tagline "Love is not a Spectator Sport". Their first DVD was released on 12 June 2007.


Main article: List of Suzuka music

The anime's music, including the background music and theme songs, was composed by Takumi Masanori and POM. The vocals for the opening and ending songs were provided by COACH☆. Except for one member of the group COACH☆, all worked as a voice actor for one of the series' characters. For the North American release, FUNimation had the opening and ending songs re-written and performed in English by Kristine Sa. In 2005, three Suzuka soundtrack albums were released in Japan through King Records.[14]

Light novel

On 17 May 2007, a Suzuka light novel was published by Kodansha under its "KC Novel" label. It contained three short stories written by Ayuna Fujisaki with illustrations done by the series creator, Kouji Seo.


A Town Where You Live (君のいる町 Kimi no Iru Machi?) is an ongoing Japanese manga written and illustrated by Kouji Seo. The series is a character-driven romance story set in the same universe and during the events of the manga and anime series Suzuka, it follows Haruto Kirishima, a self-conscious teenager, and Yuzuki Eba, a boisterous teenage girl that moved from Tokyo into the Kirishima family's country home.

A Town Where You Live is serialized in the Japanese magazine Weekly Shōnen Magazine published by Kodansha since June 2008.[15] As of July 16 2010, Kodansha has compiled its chapters into 10 bound volumes.

The plot primarily follows the two characters Haruto Kirishima and Yuzuki Eba. Yuzuki moved from Tokyo to her father's rural hometown in the Hiroshima Prefecture. Given that Haruto's father is an acquaintance of Yuzuki's father, the Kirishima's take her into their home. Haruto is not keen of the situation because he believes that Yuzuki is a complete stranger and that a girl his same age, who is not a relative, living in the same home will cause complications for him. The misunderstanding he wants to avoid the most is that they are a couple because he already likes his classmate, Nanami Kanzaki. The problem is that Yuzuki has romantic feelings for Haruto and is not timid in pursuing a relationship. Haruto being stubborn confesses once more at the Kouyasai, Yuzuki accepts. They both start a long distance relationship.

A Town Where You Live's plot principally makes use of dramatic structure to facilitate character development. The story takes a realistic tone of the lives of high school freshmen. The story's setting is based on Kouji Seo's hometown [16] and takes place approximately 2 years after Suzuka.


Suzuka has been compared to other manga such as Love Hina,[6] Maison Ikkoku,[17][18] and Kimagure Orange Road[19] since, early on, it used similar plot structure and plot devices. These comparisons became less frequent as the story developed. According to Kouji Seo, Suzuka was to be a romance story from the beginning, and he had no intention of creating a harem manga.[20] Since the North American version is uncensored, this caused the manga to be rated "Mature" and sold in shrink wrap.[21] Despite the amount of fan service, the manga does not focus on that element.[18] Kouji Seo pays attention to detail which can be seen in the clothing that gives off the sensation they are made out of different material along with the reflections in the windows during the nighttime.[22] This detail can also be seen in his characters as they all have complex personalities that make them interesting and have substance.[23] Overall the reception of the manga has been positive.

The anime has been described as having "all the trappings of a standard high school romantic comedy",[24] but lacks the spirit and craftsmanship of the manga.[1] Since the anime is a close adaptation from the manga, the criticisms of the plot are the same of it being described as generic. The anime sells "...themselves solely on the merits of character development".[19] One effect of this character development is that some viewers will find the title character and the male lead unlikable, with complaints of lack of sympathy for both characters.[25][26] The animation is considered to be ordinary with some scenes that have timing problems, look awkward, or have objects that seem oversized.[1][27] The voice actors performances are considered to be mundane and sound rather flat, in both Japanese and English languages.[1] Viewers with sensitive hearing might also pick up on the switches between mono and stereo audio in the different episodes.[24] The sports scenes are poorly animated, and the best animated scenes include night-time scenes.[26] Overall the reception of the anime so far has been mixed.

The response to the soundtrack for the anime is somewhat mixed. Most find the music respectable, but some may detest it when it tries to be funny. The opening and ending songs that were re-written and performed in English made the songs fairly close approximations of the originals and worked out better than one might imagine,[1] but others still prefer the Japanese versions.[25]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Santos, Carlo (22 June 2007). "Suzuka DVD 1 Review". Anime News Network. Retrieved 24 June 2007. 
  2. "Suzuka" Manga; volume 1 tankōbon (Chapter 02, Page 115).
  3. Suzuka (manga) ({{{type}}}) at Anime News Network's Encyclopedia. Retrieved on 23 June 2007.
  4. "Suzuka to End in Weekly Shōnen Magazine Issue 42". ComiPress. 26 August 2007. Retrieved 3 September 2007. 
  5. "Weekly Shōnen Magazine official Suzuka website" (in Japanese). Retrieved 15 October 2007. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 Tramountanas, George (20 July 2006). "CCI, DAY 1: DEL REY MANGA AIN'T YOUR MOMMA'S MANGA". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 22 June 2007. 
  7. "Suzuka 11 by Kouji Seo". Del Rey Manga. Retrieved 27 June 2008. 
  8. "Suzuka 12 by Kouji Seo". Del Rey Manga. Retrieved 29 January 2009. 
  9. "Suzuka Anime". Anime News Network. 18 April 2005. Retrieved 3 June 2007. 
  10. "Suzuka 1 Onair Information". Marvelous Entertainment. Retrieved 8 June 2009. 
  11. "Suzuka 26 Onair Information". Marvelous Entertainment. Retrieved 8 June 2009. 
  12. Suzuka (anime) at Anime News Network's Encyclopedia. Retrieved on 1 February 2007.
  13. "FUNimation Acquires 'Suzuka' Anime". ICv2. 8 January 2007. Retrieved 24 June 2007. 
  14. "Suzuka Character Song shu & Original Soundtrack Music Field 2". cdJapan. Retrieved 7 July 2009. 
  15. "Suzuka's Seo, Samurai Deeper Kyo's Kamijyō to Launch Manga". Anime News Network. May 13, 2008. Retrieved November 12, 2008. 
  16. "君のいる町: 「もみまんのように甘い恋を...」 美少女の絵入り「もみじ饅頭」で広島の町おこし" (in Japanese). The Mainichi Daily News. 2008-10-29. Retrieved 2008-12-16. 
  17. Garcia, Michael (23 December 2006). "Episode 307: Beware of Suzuka". Unwound. Retrieved 3 July 2007. 
  18. 18.0 18.1 "Suzuka" (in French). Pika Edition. Retrieved 10 July 2009. 
  19. 19.0 19.1 The Smug Dude (14 June 2007). "New Anime, Suzuka". Retrieved 17 July 2007. 
  20. Seo, Kouji (16 September 2005). Weekly Shōnen Magazine Suzuka Official Guide Book Yu Kemuri Renai Hakushu (in Japanese). Kodansha. p. 171. ISBN 4-06-372073-X. 
  21. Cha, Kai-Ming (21 February 2006). "Del Rey Manga Grows Up". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved 19 July 2007. 
  22. Alexander, Matthew (30 August 2006). "Suzuka Vol. #01 of 15*". AnimeonDVD. Retrieved 24 July 2007. 
  23. Gray, Julie (28 November 2006). "Suzuka Volume One". the comic book bin. Retrieved 23 July 2007. 
  24. 24.0 24.1 Beveridge, Chris (14 June 2007). "Suzuka Vol. #1 Review". AnimeonDVD. Retrieved 24 June 2007. 
  25. 25.0 25.1 Sinnott, John (18 June 2007). "Suzuka v.1". DVD talk. Retrieved 25 July 2007. 
  26. 26.0 26.1 Kimlinger, Carl (5 December 2007). "Suzuka DVD 5 Review". Anime News Network. Retrieved 6 December 2007. 
  27. Godek, Jake L (2005). "Suzuka Review". T.H.E.M Anime Reviews. Retrieved 24 June 2007. 
  • "Suzuka". (May 2007) Newtype USA. p. 23.

External links

ar:سوزوكا it:Suzuka (manga) ru:Suzuka (аниме и манга) th:ลุ้นรักตามสายลม zh:涼風

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