Follow TV Tropes


Manga / FAKE

Go To
FAKE is a Boys' Love manga by Sanami Matoh, which was serialized in Magazine Be x Boy from 1994 to 2000 and compiled into seven volumes. It takes the Ho Yay inherent in many buddy cop films and follow it to its natural conclusion.

When Randy McLean joins the NYPD'S 27th Precinct, he is paired up with the department troublemaker, Dee Laytner. On learning that Randy is half-Japanese, Dee decides that Randy should be called by his Japanese moniker, Ryo, and that is how the character is referred to for the rest of the series.

Almost immediately, Dee expresses an attraction to Ryo, which Ryo isn't sure how to respond to. After their first case, Dee steals a kiss from his surprised partner—and for the rest of the series, spends most of his time in romantic pursuit of his not-always-reluctant target. Ryo's adopted son, the delinquent Bikky, and Bikky's (girl)friend Carol alternately help and hinder their relationship, while other members of the cast, including JJ Adams, a marksman with a crush on Dee since their police academy days, and Berkeley Rose, an inspector with his eye on Ryo, try to keep them apart.

Dee and Ryo initially form the typical chalk-and-cheese double act, with the usually steady and sensible Ryo trying to keep the more impulsive and careless Dee under control (and handling the paperwork resulting from those cases where he doesn't quite manage to do so). However, as the series continues, it becomes clear that things aren't quite as clear-cut as they seem; Ryo has some issues that can trigger a surprisingly violent and irrational temper, while Dee looks out for the kids at the local orphanage. Both have pasts that mysteriously tie in with the city's extremely active, but equally elusive, Mafia family.

Notable as a BL series with more than romance in the plotline: Dee and Ryo's role as cops is as crucial to the plot as their relationship.

FAKE II: The Second Season

Takes place a about a year after the events of FAKE. Things have changed for the guys. Ryo and Dee are now a steady couple and Ryo has officially adopted Bikky. Soon things change even more as Dee and Ryo, along with (Formerly Those Two Guys) Drake and Ted, are offered a chance to join a new task force in conjunction with the FBI. They accept and soon form a Five-Man Band, when JJ requests to join.

The series was adapted into a one-episode OVA anime.

This series provides examples of:

  • Above the Influence: Dee makes it clear that he'd love to have his way with Ryo, almost to the point of Black Comedy Rape, but the one time that Ryo offers himself up in a moment of emotional weakness, Dee hits him and tells him that only the worst kind of dickhead would take advantage of him under those circumstances.
  • Action Girl: Diana is beautiful, sexy, and a talented martial artist.
  • Aerith and Bob: Characters with names like "Randy" or "Carol" spend time with Bikky as if nothing were unusual.
  • Alone with the Psycho: Ryo during their vacation in England.
  • Art Evolution: The art style and facial features of many characters changed a good deal from FAKE to FAKE Second Season as Matoh made faces more distinctive from one another. Ryo in particular is a prime example, looking far more boyish than he previously did.
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: We get an instance of this when Dee throws Bikky to safety from a bomb and Bikky tells him something along the lines of "If you die I'll kill you!" before he rushes off to find Ryo.
  • Battle Couple: Ryo and Dee, Ryo's reluctance to admit that they're a couple notwithstanding.
  • Bears Are Bad News: A teacher in a bear costume menaces Carol at a school camp as part of an intended fireside prank until Bikky intervenes with a stun gun. Somewhat unsurprisingly, it turns out to be a real bear after all. Bikky rather prudently decides to grab Carol and run for it once he figures it out, and becomes a hero to his fellow students for living to tell about it.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Don't threaten Ryo. Dee doesn't react well. (Making a move on him isn't advisable, either.)
    • Rob Field's trigger is red lipstick and red nail polish on women, the explanation being his deceased mother. This button is exploited by a human trafficking ring as a way of disposing of people without having to get their hands dirty.
  • The Big Rotten Apple: The 27th Precinct is set in the projects, highlighting the darker, more violent side of NYC
  • Black Comedy Rape: During the trip to England, Dee drunkenly tries to force himself on Ryo, pulling his shirt off and pinning him to the bed while Ryo struggles to escape. This is all played for laughs, and Bikky and Carol are watching from the other room placing bets on whether or not Ryo will actually get laid.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Bikky loves nothing more than annoying Dee.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall:
    Dee: "I'll bang an M rating into this sorry excuse for a manga yet!"
  • Breather Episode: Expect any serious plotline to be followed up with a silly Bikky and Carol chapter.
  • Broken Pedestal: Dee's foster father, Jess, and JJ's former partner, Max.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: Implied with Charlotte, the girl Ryo loved as a teen, with her brother.
  • Busman's Holiday: During their vacation to England. They did try to subvert this trope, but ended up caught up in the murder investigation.
  • But Not Too Foreign: Ryo, who is half-Japanese and half-Caucasian, and raised in America.
  • Character Overlap: Lai and Lass are the main characters of RA-I, by the same author.
  • Cheshire Cat Grin: Dee has a particularly scary one. Diana also has her fair share.
  • Cleaning Up Romantic Loose Ends: Done quite optimistically in "Like Like Love," Matoh's postscript story that sees everyone paired up in the end.
  • *Click* Hello: Dee to Leo Grant in Act 14.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Clingy Jealous boy in this case—Jemmy Jay Adams, aka JJ, who, gender notwithstanding, fits this trope better than he does its brother trope, as otherwise he's... well, not exactly crazy, his Dee clinging notwithstanding.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Ryo can... er... be not quite connected to reality all the time. The first time Carol pickpockets him within the precinct was because he looked so out of it that she just couldn't resist.
  • Cool Old Lady: "The Penguin", the nun who brought up Dee and runs the orphanage he grew up in.
  • Combat Stilettos: Diana manages to do a whole lot of ass-whooping while wearing high heels.
  • Cowboy Cop: Mainly Dee, but most of the 27th Precinct have their moments, even Ryo.
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: Dee can move completely into this trope at warp speed if he feels motivated enough. Ryo can also suffer from Green-Eyed Monster syndrome on occasion, and when he does...
    Dee: And holy shit, but you can be an awfully catty bitch!
  • Creepy Souvenir: Carol's kidnapper keeps one mummified hand from each of his captives after he murders them.
  • Da Chief: Dee and Ryo's long-suffering superior, Chief Warren Smith.
  • Damsel out of Distress: Carol gets kidnapped by the perp of the week, but refuses to let him scare her into staying docile and tries to escape many times, ultimately jumping out of a fourth floor window and into Ryo's arms.
    • Diana gets a turn when she gets captured by the same human trafficking ring she's been investigating and left locked inside a room with Rob Field while the cartel packs up and leaves. She manages to hold her own (despite a few axe wounds) until Berkeley and The Cavalry arrive.
  • Defiant Captive: As stated above, Carol when she gets kidnapped. Also Donna, but it doesn't end well for her.
  • Did You Just Have Sex?: Diana doesn't even have to ask; she somehow guesses this happened between Ryo and Dee.
  • Dogged Nice Guy: Dee, of the Type 2 "Patient Friend" variety, though he takes more of a Chivalrous Pervert approach to it.
  • Dynamic Entry: Dee gets some good ones, such as when Ryo is in danger in Act 5. In the manga he arrives on the scene fist-first, punching Leonard right in the face; the anime adaptation takes it even further by having him crash through a window on a motorcycle.
  • Everyone Is Bi: Or at least everyone who is male and a law enforcement officer.
  • Extremely Protective Child: Bikky towards Ryo.
  • Fair Cop: Most of the on-panel members of the 27th Precinct, starting with Dee and Ryo and excepting only Chief Smith.
  • Fake-Out Make-Out: Dee and Ryo pull one to hide Carol, at Dee's enthusiastic instigation.
  • Five-Man Band: The SCIU.
    • The Hero: Ryo is pretty much the leader of the group. No matter what Dee thinks.
    • The Lancer: Dee, as stated above, is the Cowboy Cop and Foil to Ryo.
    • The Smart Guy: Ted. He's always the one that we see on the computer bringing things up.
    • The Big Guy: Drake, despite not being that much bigger than the others. He's perhaps the most stable character aside from Ted. Not exactly dumb, although he can be unobservant and dense.
    • The Heart: JJ is the most emotional character in the series.
  • Friendly Sniper: Ryo and JJ.
  • Friend to All Children: Both Ryo and Dee. Ryo is the more obvious case; Dee claims to hate kids but donates most of his money to orphans and is always there when Bikky and/or Carol needs him.
  • Gayngst:
    • Ryo struggles to deny the fact that he's in love with Dee for six freaking volumes! It makes things even more frustrating because everyone including the entire Fourth Wall Can See It. The fact that Dee patiently waits for him to sort things out for two years even surprises Ryo.
    • In FAKE II, even after he starts dating Dee, he still worries what people like Bikky will think.
  • Get A Hold Of Yourself Man: When Ryo offers to have sex with Dee after his traumatic encounter with his parents' murderer, Dee punches him.
  • Gratuitous English: All over the comic, especially "Go Go Bikky!" Yonkoma. Of particular note is Carol turning down a guy with "Fuck you, motherfucker!"
  • Hair-Contrast Duo: Light-haired Ryo is pleasant, reserved, and occasionally a bit spacey, while black-haired Dee is brash and aggressive.
  • Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?: Ryo initially tried fending Dee off by protesting that he's straight, although privately he thinks that he may have to start admitting some things about himself. He drops the tactic pretty quickly, though it takes him six volumes to actually get around to identifying as gay.
  • Hero Stole My Bike: Dee steals a motorcycle to race back to the English hotel when he realizes Ryo is in danger.
  • Human Pet: The man who kidnaps Carol has a history of abducting young girls and keeping them, in his own words, as "pets", and murdering them if they "misbehave" (e.g., try to escape).
  • Hopeless Suitor: JJ to Dee, Berkeley to Ryo.
  • Implausible Deniability:
    • Ryo has a tendency to get extremely jealous whenever someone puts the moves on Dee. Even when it's JJ. He then proceeds to deny it vehemently.
    • Lai and Lass maintain that they have absolutely no supernatural abilities of any sort... even after flying in front of numerous witnesses. On multiple occasions.
  • I Need to Go Iron My Dog: One kid tells Bikky "I gotta go home and feed my mongoose." Another says he has to help his sister with her homework. Given the kid's intelligence, Bikky finds the two equally implausible.
  • The Jailbait Wait: Jokingly invoked by Dee and Carol when Carol promises Dee a date in ten years.
  • Karma Houdini: Zigzags. Leo was this for most of the series, as he was responsible for multiple murders across different story arcs, including Ryo's parents, and got away with every one until Alicia kills him. And Alicia for her part murdered multiple gangsters and single-handedly took down two gangs, while framing her husband for it. She even kills her husband in full view of a police officer and gets away with it because Leo begs Ryo not to tell on her. But she ends up all alone because her husband is dead and her father is about to die—and she is utterly miserable.
  • Kiss-Kiss-Slap: When Berkeley steals a kiss from Ryo, Ryo immediately punches him in the face.
  • Like Brother and Sister: Diana insists that her relationship with Berkeley is this. Until "Like, Like, Love", that is.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: The manga occasionally delves into this. When Ryo won a real-life poll, the characters commented on it in the fourth volume. Another time, Dee comments, "We're gonna bang a nice little M rating into this sorry excuse for a manga yet."
  • Left for Dead: Diana, by the human trafficking ring when they capture her and lock her inside a room with Rob Field. They get away, but thankfully Diana survives and Berkeley busts her out.
  • Love Dodecahedron: Don't ask, just keep a scorecard handy.
  • Lower-Deck Episode: The first three extras in the second season, detailing how Drake and Ted met Dee.
  • Master of the Mixed Message: Dear God, Ryo. It's pretty clear almost from the beginning that Ryo's got more then platonic feelings for his partner, but it isn't until the epilogue that Ryo tells Dee how he feels. Good thing Dee's not easily deterred.
  • Memento MacGuffin: Ryo's bed belonged to his parents before they died.
  • Moment Killer: It's a rare intimate moment between Dee and Ryo that isn't interrupted just as progress appears to be happening. Bikky and JJ do it on purpose, but they're far from the only offenders. Special mention goes to the scene in Act 17 in which they are moments from a Relationship Upgrade when the phone rings—and then JJ bursts in—and then Bikky bursts in, all within less than a minute of one another.
  • Mukokuseki: People seem to instantly recognize Ryo is part-Japanese by his eyes. His eyes don't look any different from the other characters; in fact, he looks more Caucasian than some of the other characters thanks to his lighter hair.
  • Murder by Mistake:What happened to Ryo's parents at the hands of Leo Grant and his cohorts.
  • My Greatest Failure: Smith shot and killed a suspect in front of the latter's wife and son. He was defending the kid, but still regrets needing to do it.
    • Leo has this too after Alicia fatally wounds him, Leo confesses to Ryo that he has two regrets. The first was murdering Ryo's parents, and seeing a teenaged Ryo emotionally destroyed at the hospital drove the point home to Leo that he was a monster. His second regret was not getting out of the business and making Alicia happy.
  • Not Staying for Breakfast: Ryo pulls this one on Dee after they finally have sex for the first time. Dee isn't bothered very much.
  • Official Couple: Dee and Ryo. Also, Bikky and Carol, Berkeley and Diana, and Drake and JJ.
  • Pair the Spares: In the epilogue, having reached the realization that Dee will never choose him over Ryo, JJ unexpectedly hooks up with Drake, despite their relationship not having been romantic previously and (perhaps because) Drake conveniently has just been dumped by yet another girlfriend.
  • Post-Kiss Catatonia: Drake in the epilogue after JJ plants one on him. Before that, in an example that's not played for comedy, Ryo's left sitting on the floor in shock after the second time Dee kisses him, until an emergency snaps him out of it.
  • Seme: Dee's a seme of the "wanko" or "devoted puppy" type.
  • She Is All Grown Up: Carol has this realization when she sees Bikky in high school.
  • Shipper on Deck: Carol and Diana for Ryo and Dee, plus Arisia Bryant in the anime.
  • "Shut Up" Kiss: JJ to Drake, in the epilogue.
  • Sick Episode: The manga has two separate sick chapters; first Ryo gets sick and is cared for by Dee, and later Dee gets sick and is cared for by Ryo.
  • Slasher Smile: Several examples from the less sane criminals.
  • Spell My Name With An S: The official English subs of the anime romanize Carol's name as "Cal," and the owner of the hotel in the English vacation story is "Renard" in the manga but "Leonard" in the anime.
  • Straight Gay: The 27th precinct has an unusually high density of men who like men, but the only one with any camp tendencies at all is JJ.
  • Those Two Guys: Drake and Ted in the first series basically served as a way to keep the plot going, plus occasional comic relief.
  • 20 Minutes into the Future: The Bikky/Carol side stories feature timeskips to various points in the future, up to approximately five years ahead of the main storyline.
  • Uke: Ryo: He's shorter and more sensitive than Dee, and less experienced in relationships, but he's also more reserved and not really any less masculine.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: The UST between Dee and Ryo is a central point of the first series.
  • Very Special Episode:
    • At one point the father of a (Black) serial killing victim accuses the police of racism, prompting a subplot about prejudice.
    • Dee's backstory also goes into drugs and prostitution, with a young friend of his being deliberately hooked onto a drug so that the dealers could use him to run errands and supply them with sexual favours.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds:
    • Dee and Bikky are Type 2. Although they're usually at each others' throats, when the chips are down it's clear how much they care for each other.
    • Bikky and Lai count as well.
  • Well-Intentioned Replacement: Bikky saved up money to buy some expensive jewelery for Carol and even bought it, but on the way out met a kid crying because he'd just been mugged and couldn't buy something for his mother. So of course Bikky goes back to the shop, returns the gift, and gives the kid the money. Carol winds up with sunflowers Bikky cut from his foster dad's windowsill (and since she was following Bikky and saw the whole thing, she's just as happy with that).
  • Where's the Kaboom?: Played with during a hostage crisis, Dee bluffs the bad guys by telling them a retractable ballpoint pen is the detonator for a bomb hidden in the character's base. When he clicks the pen, his bluff seems to have been called—but then the bomb, which Ryo had previously set for 10 p.m., goes off as scheduled.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Ryo and Dee, though it's mostly a case of "Will he or won't he?" with Ryo, since Dee makes his motives clear quite early on.
  • Wise Beyond His Years: Bikky occasionally and more of the practical Street Urchin type (he's Book Dumb and still rather immature). He has good intuition and keeps a cool head in crisis situations.
  • Yaoi Fangirl: Carol is one in the making. She's glad Bikky is straight, though; she shows a little disappointment at it, but is happy that it means he'll be her boyfriend.