[[quoteright:232:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/AKB49_9615.jpg]]

Urayama Minoru, an OrdinaryHighSchoolStudent, is disillusioned and apathetic towards his current life and future prospects. His crush, Yoshinaga Hiroko, is however secretly aspiring to become an IdolSinger. When Minoru found out that Hiroko is making a final attempt to pass the audition for the famous idol group [[Music/AKB48 AKB48]], he decided to support her dream at all costs, even if it meant [[{{Crossdresser}} cross-dressing]] to participate in the same audition and watch over her from the back. A heated outburst in the audition caught the attention of the group's producer and both Hiroko and Minoru - who assumed the name "Urakawa Minori" - unexpectedly passed the audition and became trainee members, or kenkyuusei, of [=AKB48=]. Now Minoru must not only protect Hiroko's dream, but also his true identity as well as he plunges unwittingly into the entertainment world.

A [[ShonenDemographic shounen]] manga by Miyajima Reiji and Motoazabu Factory, [=AKB49=]~Ren'ai Kinshi Jourei~ is the first manga that features the RealLife idol group [=AKB48=] and actual [=AKB48=] members appear from time to time as supporting characters.

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!!This series provides examples of:

* AccidentalPervert: Minoru, in the first chapter, to the senbatsu member, no less. After he becomes Minori and is walking in on the kenkyuusei girls changing, he makes a point to not look and goes to change in the bathroom.
* TheAce: Maeda Atsuko, a member of [=AKB48=] Team A, is often described as one; among the kenkyuusei Okabe Ai can be counted as one, being naturally talented in both singing and dancing.
* ACupAngst: Subverted. The kenkyuusei girls think Minori is ashamed of her chest because she changes clothes in the bathroom.
* AllLoveIsUnrequited: Invoked willingly by Minoru, and enforced by the ContractualPurity the [=AKB48=] girls have.
* AloofAlly: Okabe eventually becomes this towards the rest of the kenkyuusei after concluding a truce with Minoru.
* ApatheticTeacher: Okudaira Manabu, a classic literature teacher in Minoru's school was on the verge of becoming one until he caught a glimpse of a kenkyuusei performance and became [[MusicForCourage touched by their determination]], especially that of "Minori" who had persisted in continuing the performance even after being injured on an accident on-stage. His subsequent devotion towards supporting the kenkyuusei's determination makes him [[CoolTeacher rather cool]] after all.
* ArmorPiercingQuestion: Maeda's favourite method of provoking Minoru into action in this series.
** Minoru threw one at Maya in Chapter 90 by questioning her motivation to perform.
* AscendedFangirl: Hiroko, a fan of [=AKB48=], becomes one after she successfully passed the [=AKB48=] auditions.
* AttractiveBentGender: Minoru, when dressed up as "Minori".
* {{Baka}}: How Maeda refers to Minori when she's talking to Maya.
* BatmanGambit: Okabe's profuse apologising to [[TheRival Maya]], complete with InelegantBlubbering and a PoseOfSupplication, in Chapter 83 turns out to be a ploy to convince her that Okabe and her group is so weak that there is no harm in allowing them to participate in a television programme.
* BeautyBrainsAndBrawn: GJ subunit. Ai, Hiroko and Minori respectively.
* TheBechdelTest: With so many girls around, would be a hard problem ''not'' to pass.
* BerserkButton: Hiroko extremely detests people badmouthing Maeda, who she admires greatly.
* BigDamnHeroes: Minoru has performed a few. Saving a Okabe in a DateRapeAverted situation, saving Team K from a pair of inescrupulous {{Paparazzi}}, kicking down a locked door to save Maeda...
* {{Bishounen}}: Kijima Taichi, the manager for Minoru, Hiroko and Okabe later in the series, is one. He even appears with BishieSparkle.
* BitchInSheepsClothing: Okabe started off as one towards the kenkyuusei, although she turned out to be a JerkWithAHeartOfGold and even exhibited {{Tsundere}} attitudes occasionally.
** Maya and the &Jewel group seem to be a straight example.
* BlandNameProduct: Played straight with references to [[Website/{{Google}} Coogle]] and [[NicoNicoDouga Nuco Nuco Douga]]; averted with Website/YouTube and a straight up [[{{Vocaloid}} Hatsune Miku]] cosplay.
* BlankWhiteEyes: Okabe suffered a case of these in Chapter 54.
* BlindingBangs: The stage chief Sakura has them, which disappears when she becomes serious.
* BokeAndTsukkomiRoutine: Minori's HoldingTheFloor moment starts as a sequence of lame puns, then turns into this after the other girls join her in the stage.
* BoringButPractical: Backstage work is essentially this. Sure, the staff do not appear in the actual performance itself, but without their work, the performance will not happen at all.
* CallBack: Used frequently in this series, sometimes with references from multiple chapters within a single page.
* CaptainObvious: Invoked hillariously during the first kenkyuusei public performance. When someone tells Minori that she's just like an old man for "chugging milk", she says "I'm an old ''woman''". Everyone just laughs it off as Minori's weirdness, but the reader is aware of the predicament.
* CareerEndingInjury: It is hinted on the flashbacks that Minoru was a Baseball player until an elbow injury left him unable to play anymore and turned him apathetic to his life, mentioning that "Having dreams is pointless."
* TheCaretaker: Togasaki for the [=AKB=] Theather and Sakura for the stages.
* ChekhovsGun: The pair of charms Hiroko got for both herself and Minoru [[spoiler: turn out to be instrumental in snapping Minoru out of his HeroicBSOD in Chapter 34.]]
* ChekhovsGunman: Maeda turns out to be one [[spoiler: during Gekoku Jou's concert showdown with &Jewel, where she was shown attending the concert in Chapter 89, and turns up in Chapter 93 to rescue Minoru from being exposed as a male.]]
* ChekhovsSkill: Hiroko was constantly pressured by her father to focus on her studies. [[spoiler: Her hard work paid off during a quiz show in Chapter 78 when she rescued her team from the brink with her years of accumulated knowledge.]]
* ConverseWithTheUnconscious: Minoru did this in Chapter 33 when he disregarded his masquerade and poured his heart out to an unconscious Hiroko in the hospital.
* CoolBigSis: The default role of the regular members of [=AKB48=] towards the kenkyuusei, who will offer helpful advices on what it means and takes to be an idol whenever they appear.
* CostumePorn: The costumes for stage performances.
* CryCute: Several times.
** Hiroko the night before her first stage performance.
** Haruko after she uses Maeda's influence to encourage her friends from the GJ and the other kenkyuusei.
** Minoru, of all people, in several separate ocasions.
* ADayInTheLimelight: A few chapters focuses on the main senbatsu members, and their [[CoolBigSis interactions]] with the kenkyuusei girls.
* DeadpanSnarker: Maeda is portrayed as such in this series.
* DeathGlare:
** Maya is usually either distributing [[DeathGlare Death Glares]] or giving OhCrap faces.
** Okabe before her HeelFaceTurn also was fond of distributing these.
** An &Jewel fan used it to intimidate the other &Jewel fans on to not cheer for GJ.
* DebtDetester: Okabe claims to be this after she helped Minoru in a performance.
* {{Determinator}}: Most characters in this series have this quality.
* DirtyOldMan: Kisaki Tadamoto, the mysterious old man that appeared in Chapter 55, likes to grope Minoru and company a bit too much. He even admitted of being this trope himself.
** As a RunningGag, Team K member Ooshima Yuuko is depicted as having the mind of one.
* DudeLooksLikeALady: Minoru, which led him to attempt cross-dressing in the first place.
* EstablishingCharacterMoment: The introduction of Kijima, where he appeared in a cool pose with BishieSparkle and gave a RousingSpeech... until [[CrowningMomentOfFunny he dropped his pen and ended up chasing after it]], cemented his status as a GeniusDitz.
* DisguisedInDrag: Okabe forces Minoru to disguise himself as a girl so they could talk in private, because she can't be seen with a guy. Minoru's reaction to it is priceless.
-->'''Minoru:''' "How much of my life am I going to spend as a girl..."
* EveryGirlIsCuterWithHairDecs: After Hiroko cut her hair for the second time, Maeda takes her to a hair dresser who outfits her with a ribbon.
** Takamina also receives one from Minori during their FerrisWheelDateMoment.
* ExpectingSomeoneTaller: Arakawa Haruto, a composer whose works are internet hits, surprised Minoru and company when they visited him to request his services and found out that he is only a middle school student.
* FaceFault: Occurred to Minoru when [=AKB48=] producer Akimoto Yasushi commented that he is male in front of all the kenkyuusei during their initial meeting, then dismissing the statement as a joke. [[spoiler: Turns out he is ''really aware'' of Minoru's true identity after all.]]
* FantasyForbiddingFather: Hiroko's father strongly disapproved of her dreams to become an IdolSinger[[spoiler:, which led to a confrontation between he and Hiroko when he found out that she had joined [=AKB48=] and culminated in him estranging her.]]
* FerrisWheelDateMoment: Minoru's NotADate with Takahashi Minami, the captain of [=AKB48=], in Chapter 38 featured them having a private conversation with each other on board a ferris wheel, complete with ShipTease.
* FirstNameBasis: Hiroko allowed "Minori" to call her by that in Chapter 15, marking the strong friendship between them.
* FlowerMotifs: All over the place, more proeminent during the GJ showdown against &J.
* AFriendInNeed: Okabe bailed out Minoru a couple of times, after Minoru did the same to her earlier in the series, proving that she really has a HiddenHeartOfGold, though she claims that she do not like to [[DebtDetester owe anyone any favours]].
* FriendOrIdolDecision: A rather literal one occurred in [[spoiler: Chapter 31 when Hiroko collapsed due to fatigue right before the crucial "Day X" performance, causing Minoru to contemplate on accompanying her to the hospital and abandon his idol career or continue with the performance. He chose the former.]] Subverted in that the decision is not mutually exclusive after all.
* FunnyBackgroundEvent: The missing banana in Chapter 87, presented in a BrickJoke format.
* GenderBenderFriendship: While Minoru is on good terms with Hiroko, his friendship with her only becomes very strong when he is "Minori".
* GeniusDitz: Kijima is really TheKlutz if not for the fact that he is very sincere about his work and knows what is the best for his clients.
* GlowingEyesOfDoom: Plenty to go around.
** Mayuyu to Minoru when he's hiding in the bathroom from the other kenkyuusei during one of his [[RecursiveCrossdressing part-time jobs at a crossdressing café.]]
** Maeda while losing to Minoru an Air Hockey game at an arcade.
** Maeda (again), right after she [[BigDamnHeroes saves]] Minoru from being exposed... while shoving the HyperventilationBag on his face.
** Hiroko also receives one from Oshima Yuuko when she calls the latter a "Sexual Harraser Senpai."
* GratuitousEnglish: PlayedForLaughs in Chapter 1 when Minoru deluded himself into thinking he is not stalking Hiroko when he mis-applied the definition of "stoker" to "stalker".
* GrewASpine: Hiroko grew one when she finally opposed her FantasyForbiddingFather in Chapter 46 to persist in her dream to be an IdolSinger.
* [[GrillingTheNewbie Grilling the Newbies]]: The senbatsu members do this to the new kenkyuusei the first time they meet on the [=AKB=] theather.
* GrinOfAudacity: Minori when she founds out that Okabe's and Yoshinaga's mics weren't working during the live showdown agaisnt &Jewel.
* GrudgingThankYou: Okabe to Minoru after the latter saved her from publicly humiliating herself in Chapter 12. Marks the beginning of her CharacterDevelopment.
* HeroicBSOD: Minoru suffered from one [[spoiler:in Chapter 31 when Hiroko collapsed due to fatigue]].
* HoldingTheFloor: Minoru went up to the stage alone performing impromptu [[HurricaneOfPuns gags]] in one occasion to buy time for the backstage crew to repair the stage, which was damaged in an accident in between performances.
** [[spoiler: The ''regular'' members of [=AKB48=] did a collective impromptu performance after Minoru suffered from a HeroicBSOD (see above) and abandoned the "Day X" performance, so as to ensure the crucial performance do not get cancelled because they believe that Minoru will return. He did. Counts as a CrowningMomentOfAwesome.]]
* HomeFieldAdvantage: Maya invites the GJ to a live showdown during one of &J shows, thinking that they'll have the advantage in such conditions, and Minori wouldn't accept the offer. Sadly mistaken she was in both cases.
* AHouseDivided: Subverted. Team K's method of rehearsal involves so much arguing and infighting that one wonders how they get anything done at all, then after all is said and done, they go back to be TrueCompanions. Minori then copies this method to improve the kenkyuusei as well.
* HyperventilationBag: During Minori's crisis after the showdown against &Jewel.
* IdolSinger: The [=AKB48=] is essentially a group of idol singers, complete with ContractualPurity.[[note]] This particular clause is well-known, which led it to be adopted as the sub-title.[[/note]]
* IDrankWhat: The actual contents of the "Divine Drink" is never revealed but, according to Okabe, it actually tastes pretty good.
* ImportantHaircut: Hiroko had cut her hair twice in the series, once in the beginning to signify her all-or-nothing attitude towards the upcoming [=AKB48=] auditions and the other in Chapter 52 which signified her determination to surpass Maeda.
* ImpossibleTask: Producer Akimoto is fond of giving the kenkyuusei (especially Minoru) extremely difficult tasks to force them to improve themselves; the most notable being the "Day X" performance, where the kenkyuusei are required to attract a full house (250 people) in the AKB Theatre with a ticket price of 10000 yen per seat within two months, failing which they would be disbanded.[[note]]For comparison, performances of regular members have ticket prices of 3000 yen each.[[/note]]
* InSeriesNickname: Minorichii.
* IWantMyBelovedToBeHappy: The reason why Minoru had continued with his cross-dressing is because he had realised the importance of "Minori" as a pillar of support to Hiroko.
* JerkassFacade: Producer Akimoto and AKB Theatre manager Togasaki put up this towards the kenkyuusei.
* {{Joshikousei}}: The majority of the girls.
* KeepingSecretsSucks: Minoru experienced this when he [[spoiler: suffered from hyperventilation during a concert showdown with &Jewel]] and was on the verge of being sent to hospital, where his masquerade would surely be exposed. Luckily for him, [[SecretKeeper Maeda]] appeared to save him.
* KickTheDog: Maya throws water from a bucket at the GJ, after having stolen their turn on the stage performance, then goes on to belittle them and continues on to sing their parts during the show.
* LamePunReaction: Invoked by Minori during her HoldingTheFloor moment.
* LetsGetDangerous: Hiroko, who is usually TheQuietOne, put away her inhibitions and succeeded in bringing her team back from the brink during a live-broadcast quiz show in Chapter 78.
* LoopholeAbuse: Minori couldn't win against &Jewel during the [[ShowWithinAShow "Hell Bath Time Attack"]] because Haruka would get fired if she did, but no one said anything about not standing out more than the winner.
* LuminescentBlush: Several. A particularly funny one is when the "Sexual Harasser Oji-san" grabs Minori's ''chest''.
* MarshmallowHell: Minoru receives one from Haruko, while she's sleeping.
* MegatonPunch: Well, Megaton Kick, but still applies. Okabe to Minoru, after the latter saved her from a bike that was passing, but [[ThanksForTheMammary grabbed her chest to do so.]]
* MusicForCourage: A minor example occured in Chapter 54, when Minoru put up an impromptu performance to inspire the apathetic employees of a record company.
* MythologyGag: {{AKB0048}} has the [[LaserBlade Micsaber]], wich they use to fight the DES troops. During the [[ShowWithinAShow Uta-Seta]] performance, the GJ uses their mics as they were swords to act as if they're cutting each other up.
* NakedFirstImpression: Minoru first met the members of [=AKB48=] by accidentally barging into their changing room. {{Fanservice}} ensues as he desperately attempts to escape. He eventually succeeded, but not after [[SuggestiveCollision bumping against a few of them]].
* NiceGirl: Hiroko.
* NiceJobFixingItVillain: The crowd wouldn't be so receptive to GJ third song, had the president not turn off Yoshinaga's and Okabe's mics on the second song, forcing "Minori" to come up with the plan to [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome sing the entire song with just one mic.]]
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: [[Music/{{Aerosmith}} Pairosmith]] is the "legendary rock band" performing in Chapter 84.
* NotADate: Minoru was invited to a few one-to-one meetings by various regular [=AKB48=] members, which would appear as dates if not for the fact that they are unaware of Minoru's true identity and simply treat those meetings as between friends or senior and junior. [[spoiler: Except for Maeda, who knew about him being male but would still meet up with him as a way to mentor him about the way of an idol singer.]]
* ObfuscatingStupidity: Kisaki is actually the director of Queen Records which manages Minoru, Hiroko and Okabe and, according to producer Akimoto, the "OldMaster of the entertainment world", but likes to appear as a [[DirtyOldMan perverted]] janitor.
* OhCrap: Maya during the GJ arc, every single time the GJ girls are doing (or about to do) something out of her expectations. It almost turn into her default expression in later chapters.
* {{Ojou}}: Okabe, though we don't get to see much of her home lifestyle.
* {{Otaku}}: Okudaira-sensei, wich overlaps with a kind of SingleTargetSexuality without the sexual part. He's that much of a Minori's fan. Not Idols, not [=AKB=], Minori's fan.
* ParentalAbandonment: The main reason why Minoru succeeded in maintaining his masquerade is because his family gave him a [[HandsOffParenting free rein on his life]] (his father is not even mentioned at all), which is ramped up later in the series when his family moved house ''without even informing him'', rendering him effectively homeless.
* PassingTheTorch: Maeda does this when she graduates.
* PlaceboEffect: The "divine drink".
* {{Portmanteau}}: Haruko refers to Maeda Atsuko as "[=MaeAtsu=]"
* PortmanteauCoupleName: InUniverse, it seems that Oshima Yuuko and the other senbatsu members refers to Takamina's crush on Minori as "[=TakaMino=]".
* PoseOfSupplication: Minoru did that once before the audience [[spoiler: after he returned to the "Day X" performance to demonstrate his sincerity in apologising for his lateness.]]
* PowerOfTrust: Okabe and the rest of kenkyuusei steadfastly refused to perform without Minoru during the [[spoiler: "Day X" performance]] because they trusted that he will return. [[spoiler: He did.]]
** Earlier on in the series, Hiroko purposely lied that she had given the wrong meeting time to Minoru such that he would be late for practice after he told her that he is not worthy as an idol and is [[TenMinuteRetirement quitting]] because she believed that he will return.
* PunnyName: The group &Jewel has one. Going by the pronunciation in the manga "エンジェル"[[note]]En-je-ru[[/note]], it seems to be XtremeKoolLetterz for "Angel".
* TheQuietOne: Hiroko.
* RagtagBunchOfMisfits: The kenkyuusei are originally this.
* RecursiveCrossdressing: Minoru claims that he is working part-time in a male cross-dressing café to throw off [=AKB48=] Team B member [[GenreSavvy Watanabe]] [[OtakuSurrogate Mayu's]] suspicions on his true gender. Thankfully for him, it works.
* RousingSpeech: Minoru gave a few speeches towards the kenkyuusei throughout the series to inspire them in the face of adversity, incidentally cementing his position as centre of the kenkyuusei.
* RunningGag: Takahashi getting extremely flustered whenever she interacts with "Minori".
* SailorFuku: GJ's costume for the music "Unwielding Twintails" is this.
* SarcasticConfession: [[spoiler: Maeda]] revealed before that "Minori" is really a guy, expecting no-one to believe it. Nobody did.
* ScrewTheRulesIHaveMoney: The producer in charge of the &Jewel group believes in this.
* SecretIdentity: Minoru as "Minori".
* SecretSecretKeeper: [[spoiler: Producer Akimoto and Maeda]] are aware that Minoru is really male, but keep that secret by themselves because they thought the entire premise is interesting.
** SecretKeeper: Minoru suspects that [[spoiler: Maeda]] is aware of his true gender, but has never outright asked her to confirm his fear.
* SecretTestOfCharacter: Itano Tomomi, a Team B member, gave a minor one to Minoru and Hiroko in Chapter 11 by tempting them with the knowledge of subverting [=AKB48=]'s rule against love. Hiroko passed by arguing vehemently that they are too busy to even think of relationships.
* ShoutOut: Being a manga based off [=AKB48=], it is not surprising that the series makes numerous references about it, ranging from song lyrics sang by [=AKB48=] members to real life events pertaining towards [=AKB48=] members.
** Kijima quoted ''{{Moshidora}}'' in a speech he gave to Minoru and company after their initial introduction. When he was called out for that, he declared that he is a fan of ''Moshidora'' and is currently learning idol management from it, causing them to [[HilarityEnsues break out in laughter]], especially Hiroko. Incidentally, the live-action film adaptation of ''Moshidora'' starred Maeda.
* ShowWithinAShow: Hell Bath Time Attack and Uta-Sute
* SingingVoiceDissonance: Implied with Minoru.
* SinkOrSwimMentor: Producer Akimoto is arguably this, with his penchant for giving the kenkyuusei [[ImpossibleTask impossible tasks]].
* SleepCute: Hiroko during the first time she and Minori slept over at the AKB dorms.
* SprintScrubbing: Minori tries to use this to help Sakura clean the stage, before she stops him.
* TeamHandStack: Frequently depicted occurring before group performances.
* TheTease: Tomomi in the first chapter.
* TenMinuteRetirement: Minoru, despite him being the centre of the kenkyuusei, had quitted a couple of times temporarily due to a lack of self-confidence (being an idol was not his original intention anyway). He got stronger each time he recovered though.
* ThanksForTheMammary: Minoru to Okabe, saving her from a bike that was passing by, while he's [[ItMakesSenseInContext crossdressing as girl but not as Minori...]]
* TitleDrop: The subtitle ''Renai Kinshi Jourei'', or "[[ContractualPurity rule against love]]" is said by Minoru to himself in one occasion as a sign of determination to protect Hiroko's dream at [[IWantMyBelovedToBeHappy any cost]].
* TookALevelInBadass: Minoru, Hiroko and Okabe developed very high levels of stamina after working part-time in a construction site for three months.
* TownGirls: Okabe, Hiroko and Minoru eventually formed a stand-alone unit under [=AKB48=] called "Gekoku Jou" with Kijima as their manager.
* TrademarkFavouriteFood: Producer Akimoto is depicted as liking Calbee's Jagarico snack very much.
* TwelfthNightAdventure: Minoru's involvement with [=AKB48=] can be seen as this.
* TwinTails: Okabe sports a pair of them, with matching {{Tsundere}} personality.
* UndyingLoyalty: Okudaira-sensei towards Minori.
* TheUnseen: Urena Inako, an enka singer, is often fondly mentioned by Kijima, who used to be her manager, but has yet to appear in person.
* UnlimitedWardrobe: We hardly see the girls (and Minoru) with the same casual clothes, aside from stage costumes and rehearsal outfits.
* UnspokenPlanGuarantee: Used in Chapter 3 when Minoru came up with a plan to OutGambit Okabe. His explanation to the kenkyuusei was not depicted until after his plan had taken place.
* WholesomeCrossdresser: "Minori".
* WigDressAccent: Minoru's disguise relies simply on a blond wig, a change in dress, and a heightened voice.
* YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness: Working for Maya is...hard, to say the least.