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Manga: Yowamushi Pedal

Sakamichi Onoda is your everyday teenage Otaku just starting highschool. Having hidden his Otaku tendencies while he was in middle School, he dreams of joining this schoolís anime club in order to indulge in his passions. And hey, if he can make some friends on the side, thatíll be a bonus!

...Unfortunately, his hopes are crushed when he finds out the club has closed due to a lack of members. Though this doesnít deter him for long, and he soon sets out to gather enough people to restart it.

Meanwhile, two talented road cyclists are also entering the same school. For Shunsuke Imaizumi and Shokichi Naruko, bicycle racing is very much Serious Business. In fact, their goal for the upcoming year is to reach the Road Race Interhigh, and rob the victory podium blind.

The paths of these three intersect after Imaizumi and Naruko run into Onoda making his weekly commute to the Otaku capital of Akihabara, a whopping 90 km note  round trip on some of the steepest slopes around...on nothing but a beat up mommy-bike. Recognizing his incredible potential for road racing, the duo attempt to corral Onoda into abandoning his beloved anime club in favor of the bicycle racing club, much to the latterís horror.

And thus begins Yowamushi Pedal, a TMS Entertainment-produced anime released as part of the Fall 2013 lineup. It's also streaming on Crunchyroll under the name Yowapeda. A sequel, "Grande Road", was released as part of the Fall 2014 lineup.

This show provides examples of:

  • Action Prologue: The show opens with a shot of the cycle club, Onoda included, in the middle of a heated race. Which makes pre-cycle club!Onoda's comments even funnier.
  • Animal Motifs: A few characters are strongly associated with animals:
    • Naruko: Tiger
    • Kinjou: Snake
    • Tadokoro: Bear
    • Makishima: Spider
    • Arakita: Wolf
    • Imaizumi and Shinkai: Rabbit
  • Apology Gift: Fukutomi gives Kinjou Hakone steamed buns as a way to start to apologize for injuring him during the previous year's Interhigh.
  • Art Evolution: The art style takes 5 volumes or so to stable out. Many of the characters' designs change drastically over that time as well.
    • Makishima's hair grows incredibly quickly.
    • Fukutomi's hair changes after a flashback.
    • Imaizumi's eyes become smaller and he starts to look older.
  • Battle Aura: Of the metaphoric variety.
  • Better Than Sex: Naruko puts winning races above kissing girls or touching their boobs.
  • The Big Race: The Interhigh, which takes place every year.
  • Bland-Name Product: In the anime. The majority of the cast own recognizable brand name bikes and gear, except with one letter changed (such as Scott to Scolt). However, the brand names are not censored in the manga.
  • Cherry Blossoms: All over the place during the opening chapters. Justified in that the story begins during the start of the school yearnote  which is right around the time that they bloom.
  • Chromatic Arrangement: The freshmen trio fit this perfectly. Imaizumi, who tends to be as cool as a cucumber, is heavily associated with blue. The extremely passionate Naruko tends to be represented by red. And Onoda, the most cheerful of the lot, is linked to bright, sunny yellows. For bonus points, their bikes, cycling clothes and everyday wear follow this theme too.
  • Combat Compliment:
    • Imaizumi compliments Onoda's skills during their first race.
    • Fukutomi tells Kinjou he's "not bad" during their second-year race.
    • This occurs a lot...though it's mostly followed by an explanation of why the complimenter is better.
  • Conspicuous CG: The bikes alternate between hand-drawn and CGI.
  • Crash-Into Hello: Imaizumi and Onoda first run into each other after the former's car nearly mows the latter over.
  • Dagwood Sandwich: Tadokoro enjoys these often and tries to serve one to Onoda.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: Subverted with Onoda and Imaizumi. Onoda was not able to defeat Imaizumi during their first race, but they became friends anyways as Imaizumi started opening up to Onoda.
  • Did You Actually Believe?: Midousuji says this to Imaizumi, when the latter loses a race after the former (falsely) informs him that his mother had died after being hit by one of the other competitors.
  • Diet Episode: Parodied. In one of the omakes, Makishima thinks Tadokoro is eating too much and should diet, but decides that would be bad.
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: The 3rd OP is sung by Team Sohoku, and Team Hakone sings the 3rd ED.
  • Down to the Last Play: A staple. Happens in almost every segment of every race.
  • Family Business: The Kanzakis run a bike shop that Sohoku uses.
    • Who's Watching the Store?: Touji spends an awful lot of time helping with team practices and races, using the store's van no less.
  • Fangirls: Several characters have them.
  • Freudian Trio: The freshmen trio, with Naruko as The Id, Imaizumi being The Superego and Onoda fitting in as The Ego.
  • Glasses Pull: Shingo dramatically removes his sunglasses when Onoda wins the second stage of the welcome race.
  • Graduate from the Story: All the third year characters at the end of the first Interhigh, though they still have the occasionally cameo.
  • Gray Rain of Depression:
    • Happens when Onoda's pedal breaks during the training camp.
    • Also in Toudou and Makishima's backstory, when Makishima gets a flat tire and can't race Toudou.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Implied and Played For (Evil) Laughs when Kinjou volunteers Imaizumi for his magic trick and Imaizumi screams right as the omake ends.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Teshima and Aoyagi.
    • Onoda and Naruko are convinced Teshima is psychic because he can hold seemingly one-sided conversations with Aoyagi.
  • Huddle Shot: Sohoku has one.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Each episode title has Race instead of Episode.
  • Image Song: Everyone on Sohoku and Hakone gets one.
  • Imagine Spot: Makishima when he imagines Tadokoro gaining or losing weight.
    • Onoda also has one when he tries to figure out how Naruko will "pull him along" while they're riding, imagining a coupler attaching their two bikes together.
  • In-Series Nickname: Most characters have these.
    • Naruko: Speed Star of Naniwa
    • Kinjou: Snake of the Stone Path
    • Makishima: Peak Spider
    • Tadokoro: Rampaging Human Bullet
    • Toudou: Sleeping Beauty (self-proclaimed), Mountain God
      • Apparently everyone else calls him Ninja of the Forest behind his back, which he finds uncool.
    • Shinkai: Hakone's Straight-Line Demon
  • Japanese School Club
  • Let's Fight Like Gentlemen: Kinjou and Fukutomi after their last encounter that led to Kinjou's Game-Breaking Injury.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: Makishima and Toudou.
  • Mood Whiplash: The ending omakes are always happy, which can be pretty jarring if the end of the episode wasn't.
  • Music for Courage: Onoda gets Tadokoro to sing the Love Hime theme song with him to motivate them both to catch up to the rest of the team. Tadokoro reluctantly agrees to join in but finds it to be very effective.
  • Not So Different: Imaizumi and Naruko, to the point of Speaking In Unison - much to their discontent.
  • Officially Shortened Title: Crunchyroll shortens the series name to Yowapeda.
  • Omake: The end of each anime episode features a one or two minute side-story about the characters. They're hilarious.
  • Odd Friendship: Makishima and Toudou.
  • Old Hero, New Pals: As graduation effectively writes the entire third year cast out of the plot after the first Interhigh, going into the second Interhigh a brand new set of characters (in the form of new first and second years) are introduced to serve as their replacements.
  • Pastel-Chalked Freeze Frame
  • Product Placement: There are posters with the cast advertising Pocari Sweat.
  • The Promise:
    • Between Toudou and Makishima.
    • Also between Kinjou and Fukutomi to determine the true winner of their race honorably, after Fukutomi causes the crash with Kinjou.
    • Manami and Onoda, like their senpai, also promise to duke it out at the Interhighs.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni:
    • Naruko is the red to Imaizumi's blue.
    • Tadokoro (red) and Makishima (blue) also form a pair.
  • Restrained Revenge: Tadokoro only punches Fukutomi after he finds out Fukutomi was the one who caused Kinjou to crash.
  • Say My Name: Too often to count.
  • Second Place Is for Losers: Imaizumi's view on previously finishing second in a major road race.
    • Beautifully subverted during the Freshman Race, to the point of encroaching into Second Place Is for Winners territory. Sure, Onoda had to be retired from the race and thus automatically came in last place...but he did reach the top of a difficult mountain summit well before the more seasoned riders, an achievement which is greatly applauded by the rest of the club.
  • Secret Test of Character: During the training camp, Kinjou alters Onoda's bike so that it's more difficult to climb hills. He doesn't tell Onoda about the change saying that he should learn how to face adversity and figure it out on his own. Note that this is ''despite'' Onoda being the most inexperienced member of the club.
    • Keeping Secrets Sucks: Kinjou tells Makishima about how and why he altered Onoda's bike. Despite Kinjou's orders, Makishima feels bad for Onoda and tells him anyways.
  • Sempai/Kohai: These relationships exist for most of the cast.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Makishima and Tadokoro, respectively.
  • Serious Business: Cycling
  • Signature Move: Lots of characters.
    • Makishima: Spider climb
    • Onoda: High cadence climb, as well as singing to perfect the rhythm of his pedaling and timing of his gear shifts.
    • Tadokoro: Human bullet train, Mach-Speed Oxygen-Burning Human-Bullet
    • Midousuji: Forward leaning riding style
    • Naruko: Rocket Sprint
    • Toudou: Sleeping Climb
    • Aoyagi and Teshima: Synchronized Straight Twin
  • Singing in the Shower: Imaizumi and Onoda both sing the Love Hime song in two separate omake, though Imaizumi is much more embarrassed about it.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Izumida's pecs are named after the Schleck brothers, famous cyclists.
    • The Stinger of episode 26 has one to Black Butler. Onoda is watching a movie scene in which a Horned Humanoid in butler outfit says "I'm just a sheep" note 
  • Show Within a Show: Love Hime. Even has a movie.
  • Shown Their Work: The manga and anime represent cycling extremely accurately, and correctly explain the strategy and mechanics behind it. Although some aspects are over-the-top (such as Makishima's dancing).
  • So Proud of You: Multiple people say this throughout the series:
    • Touji to Tadokoro
    • All of Sohoku to Onoda
    • Tadokoro to Aoyagi and Teshima
  • Speed Stripes
  • The Stinger: After the ED, there is usually a short comedic scene. Sometimes involving Love Hime.
  • Surprise Creepy: Midosuji loves pulling these. It helps that he sports a near-permanent Slasher Smile, but he has a knack for showing up suddenly with his insanely creepy looking face.
  • Team Spirit: Heavily comes into play during the Inter-High arc.
  • Tears of Joy: Teshima and Aoyagi shed a few when Tadokoro wins the first checkpoint against Izumida and Naruko.
  • The Team: Sohoku, Hakone, and every other team competing at Interhigh.
  • Theme Song Powerup: Played With. They have a theme song, and it powers them up, it's just... Love Hime's theme song, rather than their own.
  • Throwing the Fight: Fukutomi tells Kinjou that he would lose the race if Kinjou asked him to. Kinjou refuses his offer.
  • Tie-In Novel: The series has one focusing on Makishima and Toudou's past.
  • Training from Hell: The cycling camp. 1000kmnote  in 4 days. And Imaizumi, Naruko and Onoda all have handicaps.
  • Trash Talk: Gets thrown around a lot.
  • Unnecessary Roughness: Fukutomi unconsciously grabs Kinjou's jersey in desperation during a race, causing them to both fall. Fukutomi comes out of it relatively unscathed, but Kinjou breaks some of his ribs and is bleeding through his jersey by the end of the day's race.
    • Midousuji also tries to knock over Imaizumi on purpose, but he managed to stay upright.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Naruko and Imaizumi fall into this dynamic pretty quickly. On the track, they're practically blood brothers. Off it, it's made very clear that Imaizumi is perfectly willing to let Naruko drown in his own bath.
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alternative title(s): Yowamushi Pedal
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