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Kyojin no Hoshi (Japanese: 巨人の星, Star of the Giants) is a Japanese sports manga written by Ikki Kajiwara and illustrated by Noboru Kawasaki. If someone wants to know where the Sports Story Tropes in Japan come from, they need to not look further: Kyojin no Hoshi is the Trope Codifier of almost all of them.

The protagonist of this story is Hyuuma Hoshi, a young boy who lives in a very poor household (apparently, an old post-war nagaya complex) with his older sister Akiko and his father Ittetsu, who used to be a very well-loved baseball player until World War II — where he sustained a severe injury that put him out of the race forever. The bitter, impoverished man has not lost his passion for baseball, however, and he sees his son as someone who can go all the way to baseball stardom. As such Ittetsu subjects Hyuuma from early childhood to all kinds of Training from Hell and an extremely harsh mental and physical treatment (now seen as downright abusive), all to shape him into the best and most powerful player in Japan. And as Hyuuma properly immerses himself in the world of baseball, he finds great friends (like his partner Chuuta Ban), just as great rivals (like Housaku Samon and Mitsuru Hanagata) and begins to devote himself to the sport in body, mind and soul, trying to dodge all the wrenchers that life constantly throws in his way as he becomes a school-league star and then begins a pro career...

Kyojin no Hoshi was published in Weekly Shonen Magazine through 1966 and 1971, spawning 19 volumes. While it was not the first baseball manga (that honor belongs to Kazuya Fukumoto and Tetsuya Chiba's Chikai no Makyu, which ran in 1961), it was the second sports anime television series broadcast in Japan in 1968 (the first one was 1967's Macha Go Go Go! / Speed Racer), reaching 182 episodes and airing from 1968 to 1971.

The series later spawned: a sequel manga (Shin Kyojin no Hoshi, which ran from 1977 to 1979 and had 11 volumes), two anime sequels (1977's Shin Kyojin no Hoshi and 1979's Shin Kyojin no Hoshi II), several anime movies (Chizome no Kesshousen [1969], Ike Ike Hyuuma [1969 as well], Dai League Ball [1970], Shukumei no Taiketsu [1970], and The Movie [1982]), a 13-episodes OAV centered on Hyuuma's Friendly Rival Mitsuru Hanagata (Special Edition: Fierce Tiger Hanagata, 2002), a PS2 game by Capcom, an Alternate Retelling manga also from Mitsuru's POV (Yoshiyuki Murakami's Shinyaku "Kyojin no Hoshi" Hanagata, 2006-2010), a series of pachinko games, and an Indian animated remake that replaces baseball with cricket (Suraj: The Rising Star, 2012). As a bonus, the character designer in both TV series was none other than the late Shingo Araki, who was and still is famous for working in classic animes like Ashita no Joe (also written by Ikki Kajiwara but under the pen name "Asao Takamori", and illustrated by Chikai no Makyu's Tetsuya Chiba), Saint Seiya and Rose of Versailles.

(And rather curiously, the ladies from CLAMP wrote BL doujinshi about the series)

This page is in constant construction!

Tropes used in Kyojin no Hoshi include:

 Tropes from the First Part (Kyojin no Hoshi)

  • Abusive Parents: Ittetsu Hoshi sincerely and really wants to shape Hyuuma into a baseball star, a bigger one than he could've ever been. He could've done so without forcing him go to through massive Training From Hell, without snapping on him when Hyuuma talked back to him, without pretty much forcing Akiko to take up a maternal role towards Hyuuma due to all of this, etc. Considering the setting AND the time this series was created in, however, it's more likely that Ittetsu was intended to be a case of Parents as People and Tough Love than this trope.
  • Animation Bump: The OAV's centered on Mitsuru are from 2002, so any new scenes included in them (like the one featured above) play this straight.
  • Ascended Extra: Mitsuru becomes this in the OAV's and the alternate retelling manga.
  • Bash Brothers: Hyuuma and Chuuta are a sports version of this. Later, however, they play for opposite teams and become rivals. And it ain't exactly easy for them.
  • Big Fancy House: The Special Edition OAV features the Hanagata family's lovely country house by a lake. His actual house, which is seen in the series itself, is pretty nice too.
  • Bowdlerise: The scene where Hyuuma goes to Mina's house and finds her dead was taken out of the Italian dub.
  • Break the Cutie: Hyuuma is a cute kid from a poor family, and he and his cute sister are often broken by the plot.
  • Broken Bird: Oh, Kyouko.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: A flashback shows that the Hoshi parents were this to a letter. The mother's death is one of the biggest reasons why the already heavily alcoholic and depressed father, who was a seemingly normal dad before the war itself, became... well, who he is.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: The sweet and quiet Akiko can play this trope straight towards Ittetsu, if Hyuuma needs it. ie., episode 94 has her leaving home after a big discussion with Ittetsu regarding Hyuuma's life
    • She does it again when Hyuuma's injury in his left arm reaches career-ending levels, blaming Ittetsu's harsh treatment of him for it and even bitterly asking him if he's happy for it now. Mitsuru has to calm her down from that one, telling her that such injuries are risks for all athletes and promising to help.
  • Career-Ending Injury: Several injuries suffered by the characters here will either risk becoming this or downright go there. Even Mitsuru (in the past, but he did manage to recover) and Hyuuma go through these. Hyuuma's specific case was supposed to be the catalyst of the series' Downer Ending, but after years Kajiwara convinced Kawasaki to re-start the series and create Shin where Hyuuma manages to re-learn how to play.
    • The reason why Ittetsu had to retire was one of these. He got a serious injury in his left arm in the last days of World War II, then the injury got worse as he tried to retake his once-promising baseball career and failed. . .
  • Cool Big Sis: Akiko tries to be this and a mother figure to Hyuuma. He certainly considers his "Oneechan" as such and clearly adores her.
  • Dance of Romance: Hyuuma and Rumi. Sort-of.
    • Subverted when Hyuuma, Housaku and Kyouko end up in a dance club. Hyuuma does not dance with her and can't help thinking of his awkward dance with Rumi plus his time with Mina as he watches her on the dance floor. But Housaku does (rather awkwardly) dance with Kyouko; since he falls for her hard and they eventually marry, it can be seen as them playing the trope straight.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: Chuuta did NOT like Hyuuma at first. When Hyuuma proved himself to be stronger and more determined than he believed, they became besties and partners.
    • More or less works with Kyouko too, as she only begins to warm up to Hyuuma when he faces her and other delinquent girls to defend himself and Housaku — and he even slaps her across the face.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Once Hyuuma stands up for himself and Housaku, Kyouko shows a friendlier side to them (and by association to Housaku's sister).
  • Diving Save: When Chiyo Samon is looking for her brother late at night, she's cornered by delinquents. When she tries to run away, she almost gets hit by a car — Kyouko pulls this trope and rescues her.
  • Dub Name Change: In the Italian dub:
    • Hyuuma --> Tommy Young
    • Ittetsu --> Arthur Young
    • Akiko --> Giusy Young
    • Chuuta --> Charlie Red
    • Mitsuru --> Alexander Mitchell
    • Housaku --> Simon Holden
    • Kyouko --> Alice
  • Fingore: Hyuuma gets a bleeding injury on his thumb during a match with Housaku's team. It brings quite the problems when he plays against Mitsuru afterwards, and Mitsuru himself is appalled when he finds out.
    • Later, Hyuuma and Kyouko are in serious trouble with some Yakuza-like gangsters, and they try to pressure him into stabbing his own fingers so they'll release her. When it seems he will actually do it, Kyouko herself stops him — but ends up with a cut on her own finger.
  • Flowers of Romance: At some point, Mitsuru sends Akiko a big and beautiful bouquet of flowers. Hyuuma wonders if his rival has a crush on his big sister, and is actually pretty pleased. Subverted: this sparks a fight between the siblings, since Hyuuma seems to think of a Mitsuru/Akiko match-up more in baseball terms, and things go downhill from there.
  • Friendly Rivalry: Hyuuma has these with Housaku Samon and especially Mitsuru Hanagata. Who eventually becomes his brother-in-law.
    • And later in the series, Hyuuma and Chuuta, of all people, end up playing for opposite teams. This throws a severe wrench between them, however.
  • Hair Decorations: Rumi has a light pink headband with a bow.
  • Heroic BSOD: Hyuuma suffers more than one of these through the story, like a rather hilariously memetic one has has when no one comes to spend Christmas with him... and a very, very dramatic one when Mina dies and he can't be there for her.. Heck, when things get more complicated, at times the guy seems to be near permanently in one of these.
  • Heterosexual Life Partners: Chuuta Ban and Hyuuma Hoshi, partners and best friends. As said above, being in different teams puts their bond through the wringer, but eventually they make up.
  • Hospital Hottie: One of Hyuuma's Love Interests, Mina Hidaka, is a pretty girl who works in a small clinic. Ironically, she's also an Ill Girl.
  • Idol Singer: Another of Hyuuma's prospect Love Interests, Rumi Tachibana, is a member of the promising singing trio Aurora Musume.
  • Ill Boy: One could say that Hyuuma becomes the first big example of the "sportsman who isn't ill but does have a very serious injury" variation so common in Sports Manga. The first part of Shin depicts how he gets better, in no small part via re-learning how to use his right hand rather than his injured left one...
  • Ill Girl: Mina Hidaka, who has cancer (more exactly, malignant melanoma) and dies of it.
  • Japanese Delinquents: The third girl that Hyuuma is romantically sort-of linked with, Kyouko, looks like a proto-Ganguro (sans deep tan).
  • Japanese School Club: Joining a famous school's baseball club is a totally vital step to become a famous baseball player, so Ittetsu literally works himself sick to gather enough money so he can enlist Hyuuma into the rich kids' school Seiun Institute and help him get scouted by a good-enough team.
    • Chuuta Ban is not only the son of the director of the Seiun school, but the star of the judo club. After befriending Hyuuma, he switches to the baseball team and becomes his friend for life.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Kyouko is a female version, being harsh and cold towards those she doesn't trust but also quite willing to help out those who really need it.
  • Kimono Is Traditional: Chuuta Ban's father aka the director of Seiun School is almost always seen in a traditional black male kimono.
  • Lonely Rich Kid: Mitsuru Hanagata is the only child of an insanely rich family dedicated to car businesses. But he doesn't seem to have many friends outside the team and even used to be bullied, especially when he lived abroads. The alternate re-telling that has Mitsuru as the protagonist focuses quite a bit on this side of him.
  • Love Hurts: And HOW. Hyuuma falls hard for a girl who's severely ill and dies of her illness (Mina) and any kind of relationship with other two ladies (Kyouko and Rumi) doesn't go too far for several different reasons; Chuuta is strongly implied to crush on Akiko, but while she cares for him but doesn't love him back, and in Shin he's still unmarried; and Housaku falls hard for the troubled Kyouko and struggles with it for a while; it'll take a bit for his feelings to stabilize, and for them to get together..The one who more or less escapes this is Mitsuru, who likes Akiko and actually does get together with her, as seen in the OAV's and Shin.
  • Love Interest: Hyuuma is romantically close to three girls, in different degrees: the prospect Idol Singer Rumi, the nurse Mina and the delinquent girl Kyouko. Things don't work out between him and Rumi, he falls hard for Mina but she dies of illness, and Kyouko ultimately marries Housaku instead.
  • Manly Tears: PLENTY of these. i.e, Mitsuru is appalled when finds out that Hyuuma played against him despite having a bloody and painful injury on his thumb coming from the match against Housaku; when all is explained, both young men embrace one another in tears.
  • Missing Mom: Hyuuma and Akiko's mother, who died of illness and exhaustion when they were little kids.
    • Mitsuru's mother also passed away when he was a kiddo.
  • Never Got to Say Goodbye: Hyuuma's Ill Girl of a Love Interest Mina passes away when he's in a baseball match. When the poor guy arrives to her home and sees her dead plus speaks to her grieving loved ones, he does NOT take it well.
  • Pink Is Girly: Akiko tends to wear pink clothes. Kyouko wears a pink sleeveless jacket/miniskirt combo, but she's very tomboyish.
  • Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Mitsuru and Akiko.
  • Princely Young Man: Mitsuru is the Ice King type, adding small dashes of the Yamato Nadeshiko kind.
    • Chuuta downplays it, since he starts as an Ice King but defrosts FAST.
  • Promotion to Parent: Akiko Hoshi has to play this role, since her and Hyuuma's mother died very young and Ittetsu is a less-than-ideal father to them. As such, she is Hyuuma's biggest supporter and is gently yet fiercely protective of him, willing to go against Ittetsu and others if it means she'll be able to help him. Andf that might include Hyuuma himself, if it's needed.. This is even reinforced when the siblings move out of the family home and live together, with Akiko still helping Hyuuma out.
    • Hyuuma's Friendly Rival Housaku Samon is the eldest of six orphaned siblings — the others are his three brothers (Seiichi, Masahiro and Jirou) and his two sisters (Chiyo and Michi). He desires to be a baseball star so he can provide for himself and the children adequately; in Shin, said dream has more or less become true. And there's a big plus in Shin: by these days Housaku is married to Kyouko, who helps him out.
      • The second eldest of the Samon children, Chiyo, does her best to support his efforts via mothering their younger siblings when he's not around, and sometimes mothering him a little.
  • Ship Tease: Mitsuru and Akiko. i.e, he sends her flowers and later they go out together, which Hyuuma sees favorably; and much later, a flashback shows that when Akiko breaks down over Hyuuma's Career-Ending Injury, Mitsuru is the one who talks to her and calms her down. Their relationship also gets focus in the OAV's centered on Mitsuru, and they ultimately have a Relationship Upgrade.
    • Hyuuma has it with three different girls: Rumi, Mina and Kyouko.
    • Also, Housaku and the above mentioned Kyouko.
  • Shipper on Deck: As said above, Hyuuma doesn't object to his big sister hooking up with his Friendly Rival. . .
  • Stage Dad: Ittetsu, HOLY SHIT!
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: Hyuuma and Mina Hidaka can be seen as such. Out of the girls he's romantically close to, she's the one he seems to fall for the hardest — but she turns out to be Too Good for This Sinful Earth, and even in Shin he's all but still in love with her.
  • Stellar Name: For both the series and the protagonist.
  • Stock Shoujo Bullying Tactics: Hyuuma was harassed by other kids for either his poverty or his training harness, and in fact he met his Friendly Rival Mitsuru when he witnessed the harassment and stepped in to stop it. In his first days in Seiun he also was bullied by Chuuta, but when he turned out to be stronger than the other youth thought, they became fast friends.
    • Mitsuru himself lived in England as a child, and he was heavily bullied by English kids. He didn't necessarily have it easier when he returned to Japan, either.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Physically speaking, as seen in the second picture Hyuuma looks like a younger Ittetsu. Akiko resembles her and Hyuuma's Missing Mom, but with lighter and longer hair.
    • Out of Housaku's siblings, the two girls (Chiyo and Michi) look very similar. Two of the boys (Seiichi and Jiro) also have Housaku's eyes and Youthful Freckles, while the other (Masahiro) looks like his sisters.
  • The Three Faces of Eve: Mina (the Wife, as a kind Hospital Hottie), Rumi (the Child, as the cute Idol Singer) and Kyouko (the Seductress, as the fierce delinquent girl)
  • Third Person Person: Rumi.
  • Tender Tears: Both of the Hoshi siblings are prone to these, but especially Akiko. At times it's easier to count the scenes in which the poor girl is NOT crying or about to start crying.
  • Training from Hell: This series is the Ur Example in anime: poor Hyuuma was put through hellish training as a baseball player since childhood by his father. The most iconic part of the training was a special spring-loaded harness Hyuuma wore beneath his clothes, which made even daily tasks part of this.
  • Trope Codifier - Ur Example: Again, if someone wants to know where pretty much ALL Sports Story Tropes in Japan come from, they need to not look further than Kyojin no Hoshi. It has pretty much EVERYTHING: Training from Hell, Melodrama, the "never give up on anything" mentality, etc.
  • Whole-Episode Flashback: Episode 161 of the anime, which explains the tragic story of the Hoshi family: how Ittetsu was drafted into the Imperial Army, the loss of his career and fall in alcoholism, how Mrs. Hoshi tried to keep the family together even when she was at her own lowest points, her death pretty much in her husband's arms, etc.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: Later in the series, a delinquent girl tries to mug Housaku in the streets. He immediately reacts and grabs her by the arm, even twisting it a little — and the girl starts screaming, while her fellow delinquents begin to falsely accuse Housaku of being abusive with women so he'll let go of her. Even worse: the girls recognize him as a sportsman and corner him. . .
  • Yamato Nadeshiko: Hyuuma's kind and gentle older sister Akiko fits in fairly well via being his mother figure and the more down-to-Earth member of the Hoshi household (even if... tearful and frail), having long dark hair plus cutely modest looks, etc. After she marries Hyuuma's rival Mitsuru Hanagata in the sequel, she starts wearing kimonos and looks even more like one.
    • To no one's surprise, Akiko and Hyuuma's late mother turns out to have been one.
    • The eldest of Housaku's younger sisters, Chiyo Samon, is one in training.
  • Youthful Freckles: Curiously, the one who has them is Housaku rather than Hyuuma. He "loses" them in Shin, however.

Tropes from the Second Part (Shin Kyojin no Hoshi — Shin Kyojin no Hoshi II)

  • Art Evolution: The character designs and art style are more detailed than in the original. More or less justified since Shin started running / airing several years years after the end of the first series.
  • Babies Ever After: In the anime Mitsuru and Akiko
  • Bash Brothers: Hyuuma forges this with a new pitcher partner, Futoshi Marume. Not before defeating him, of course.
  • Best Friends-in-Law: Hyuuma and Mitsuru, after the latter's marriage to Akiko. It's even lampshaded early in Shin: when Hyuuma sees Mitsuru for the first time after a while and calls him by name, the other man replies something by the lines of "Now I'm your 'older brother'!"
    • This could've happened between Chuuta and Hyuuma too, since Chuuta is implied to have had quite a crush on Akiko. But as seen above, she married Mitsuru instead.
  • Big Fancy House: Again, the Hanagata family's home is a nice one, even if in modern times it looks more simple than one would think.
  • Birth-Death Juxtaposition: In the anime, Ittetsu's death and the birth of Mitsuru and Akiko's child take place exactly the same day. It even gets a nice lampshade when the father-to-be is told about his father-in-law's demise (which took place in the person's home) while in the hospital's waiting room, and less than a minute later he hears the cries of his and his lady's newborn baby...
  • Bittersweet Ending: The literal last scene has Hyuuma leaving Japan on a boat to travel through the world and experience new things, with near all his loved ones (Chuuta, Mitsuru, Sachiko, Futoshi, etc.) saying goodbye to him from the docks.
  • But Now I Must Go: Hyuuma
  • Career-Ending Injury: Subverted by Bill, who suffered once when he was a pitcher — and reinvented himself as a batter. That's why Chuuta and Mitsuru want him to train Hyuuma.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The infamous training harness makes its return very late in the series.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Ittetsu forced Hyuuma to use his left hand rather than the right one. Years later, re-learning to play with his right hand under Bill's tutelage is Hyuuma's key to return to baseball.
  • Cry Cute: The rough and Hot-Blooded Bill is reduced to tears when Akiko pleads with him and he's reminded of his lost love Emily.
  • The Cutie: Sachiko, a little girl that Hyuuma has an Intergenerational Friendship with.
  • Death by Adaptation: Ittetsu dies in the anime version.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: Hyuuma pulls this on Futoshi, who is a member of both a school gang and Seiun's wrestling team.
  • Dub Name Change: In the Italian dub, aside of what's mentioned above:
    • Yoko Sakisaka --> Susan Barrymore
    • Sachiko --> Caroline / Carolyn
    • Emily (Bill's lost love) --> Jennifer
  • Dying Alone: Barely averted by Ittetsu in the anime, since Chuuta comes to his home few before he more or less peacefully dies.
  • Eagleland: Hyuuma's coach, Bill Thunder.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Hyuuma's hair is longer and fluffier, making him look like a sportsman version of Kenshiro at times. Though he cuts it shorter.
    • Mitsuru cuts his Peek-a-Bangs and has a slightly longer, more mature style, more befitting of the Honest Corporate Executive that he is now.
    • Akiko used to wear her long hair loose, but after marrying Mitsuru she pulls it up into a Prim and Proper Bun.
    • Ittetsu's hair has turned completely white and is a bit more military-like styled.
    • Kyouko doesn't bleach her hair any longer.
  • Former Teen Rebel: Kyouko, who has married Housaku and is much calmer and more mature than in her youth. Might count as Chickification, however.
  • Guile Hero: Mitsuru and Chuuta more or less get to play these roles, as they use their contacts and strong wills to help out Hyuuma.
  • Hair of Gold: Bill Thunder is harsh around the edges but isn't evil at all, and in his youth he had blond hair. His lost love, Emily, was also a blonde.
  • Happily Married: The Official Couples here may not have the smoothest paths and are quite the chaste type, but still genuinely love each other quite a bit.
  • Heroic BSOD: The fourth episode shows that Akiko suffered a serious one in the past when she desperately tried to arrive in time for Hyuuma's last game via train but could only meet up with him, Ittetsu and Mitsuru in the hospital. In the present, when Hyuuma and Mitsuru almost have a fight in front of her, she tells him about it and almost collapses again. (Rather curiously, this seems to be a bit of a Retcon at least regarding the anime, since things were more smooth originally)
  • He's Back: Hyuuma himself has kinda spent the last years more or less in a big crisis after he cannot play anymore due to the Career-Ending Injury in his left arm, and the story properly kicks in when he starts bringing himself back on his feet...
  • Honest Corporate Executive: Both Mitsuru and Chuuta have evolved into this.
  • Hot DadHot Mom: Mitsuru and Akiko, respectively, become this at the end.
  • Housewife: Even after marrying into Mitsuru's family and becoming "the lady" of their Big Fancy House, Akiko refuses to let her housekeeper do everything on her own. One of her early scenes in Shin has her at the kitchen, and later in the same episode she personally makes dinner for her husband and her brother (this one's understandable, she hasn't seen the latter in quite the time and it'd be OOC for her to do otherwise).
  • Ill Boy: Futoshi's friend Akira Nanba.
  • Interrupted Suicide: In the second part of Shin, the radio host Yoko Sakisaka is about to interview Hyuuma for her show, but then she gets a letter from a suicidal boy who lives in Kamakura. So Hyuuma and Yoko must go there and team up to find him before it's too late. They find the boy when he's about to throw himself into the sea; Yoko slaps him, then gives him a Cooldown Hug and convinces him to live. As a bonus, Hyuuma had been rather cold to Yoko but the incident helped him warm up to her.
  • Kimono Is Traditional: After Akiko weds Mitsuru, she wears a a purple kimono with a blue obi sash instead of her simple gymslip-like pink or blue dresses. This means that not only she's now a married woman, but has a much higher social standing. (Even when she doesn't flaunt it at all)
    • The older and somewhat calmer Ittetsu Hoshi is also seen wearing kimonos 24/7 (he was seen sometimes in these in the original). But unlike Mr. Ban or Akiko's ones, he wears simple ones that resemble yukata.
  • The Lost Lenore: Mina, oh Mina.
  • My Greatest Second Chance: Due to the very serious injury he sustained at the end of the first series, Hyuuma has been out of the baseball circles in Japan for around five years. The series begins when he starts bringing himself back...
    • Mitsuru has left sports to work in the Family Business and is married to Akiko. But as Hyuuma returns and fights to rebuild his career, he starts to wonder if he can do such a thing too and get one last match against his close friend and best rival... And it happens. Much awesome ensues.
  • Never Got to Say Goodbye: Only in the anime, but still: At the very end, Ittetsu passes away... while watching Hyuuma and the Giants' championship match, which they win, with Chuuta by his side. Hyuuma logically isn't there with him, and neither is Akiko since she's about to give birth to her and Mitsuru's baby; when Hyuuma is told about it right after the match, he logically is very unhappy (even when he reacts less melodramatically than when he lost Mina).  
  • Official Couple: Two: Mitsuru and Akiko, and also Kyouko and Housaku.. Hyuuma and Yoko could have been this, but...  
  • The One That Got Away: It turns out that Bill Thunder had a girlfriend named Emily when he was a player — but they grew apart as he became famous and Married to the Job. In the present, when he has a heated discussion with Mitsuru Hanagata over their viewpoints regarding his would-be pupil Hyuuma and then the man's wife Akiko (who's also Hyuuma's sister) appeals to him personally in an attempt to smooth things out, Bill is tearfully reminded of the woman he once loved and still deeply misses...  
  • Parental Substitute: Kyouko marries Housaku, a man who's raising his five much younger siblings on his own. As such, she becomes their surrogate sister/mother figure.  
  • Pose of Supplication: Chuuta once goes into it when he asks Housaku to help Hyuuma via letting him have his famous data on baseball.
    • Similarly, Akiko kneels in front of Bill to intercede in Hyuuma's favor after Bill and Mitsuru have quite the discussion regarding him.
  • Ship Tease: Hyuuma and Yoko come to quite like one another, even when Futoshi has a bit of a Celeb Crush on her. But nothing really comes from it, since Hyuuma is still in love with Mina (and at least once, he sees Yoko as her). After she finds out through Chuuta, she gets Put on a Bus.
  • Sleeping SingleMitsuru and Akiko are quietly affectionate to one another and sleep in separate beds. In the anime they conceive a child who's born at the very end, so things definitely changed at some point.
  • Time Skip: A five years one.
  • Took a Level In Kindness: The harsh, tempery and tyrannical Ittetsu Hoshi has become calmer with age. In the first Shin series he's seen being very patient and even friendly to two neighborhood kids that he's become friends with, even letting one of them nap on him once.
  • True-Blue Femininity: The flashbacks featuring Akiko tend to depict her in blue clothes rather than pink ones.
  • Uptown Girl: Akiko and Mitsuru.
  • Weddings in Japan: Oddly used in Mitsuru and Akiko's wedding: as seen in this picture, the groom wore a white tuxedo, but the bride wore a traditional and very luxurious wedding kimono.