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Manga / Hanebad!

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From left to right and top to bottom: Kaoruko, Riko, Nozomi, Connie, Yuika, Nagisa, Ayano.

Hanebad! is a sports manga by Kōsuke Hamada, published in the monthly magazine good!Afternoon since 2013.

Kentarō Tachibana is the coach of Kitakomachi High School's badminton team. He is worried because the team has so few members that it cannot even enter competitions, but then he spots a student named Ayano Hanesaki easily climbing a large tree on the school grounds, expertly demonstrating excellent motor skills. Tachibana tries to get Ayano to join the badminton team, but finds out that Ayano hates badminton.

An animated adaptation by Liden Films aired for the 2018 summer lineup. While the manga is quite light-hearted and often comedic (at least in the early parts), the anime adopts a much more somber tone, changes some characters' personalities and rearranges the storyline significantly, making the two versions very distinct from each other.

Warning: the manga's English translation is very far behind, so there will be spoilers.

Hanebad! provides examples of:

  • Accidental Misnaming: Ayano calls Kaoruko "Sarigiwa" instead of "Serigaya" in the early chapters of the manga. It's not quite clear whether it's really accidental though.
  • The Ace: Uchika Hanesaki is viewed as such, winning 10 All Japan national titles and the players she trained (Ayano, Connie and Wang Li Xiao) are World Class elites.
  • Adaptation Personality Change: Given the Darker and Edgier nature of the anime adaptation, Ayano ends up getting hit the hardest by this. In the manga, she's something of an Idiot Savant and Cloud Cuckoolander. The Cavalier Competitor and Sore Loser tendencies comes more from immaturity rather than actual malice. In the anime, she has deep-seeded abandonment issues and seems barely coping with depression.
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul: The anime made Riko and Nozomi old friends from middle school, even though they don't know each other in the manga (although they do have a match).
  • Adaptational Jerkass: Nagisa, Kaoruko, Connie and even Ayano all go through this in the anime. Nagisa has gone from simply grumpy to absolutely tyrannical before her Jerkass Realization in episode 3, Kaoruko has gone from comically haughty to insufferably arrogant, and Connie, a proud and sometimes severe girl who nonetheless cherishes her friends and wants to be together with her sister Ayano, has become a self-entitled jerk who seems to loathe Ayano and shuns her own teammates at first; and Ayano herself, when she's in Serious Mode, becomes not only slightly smug like in the manga, but also gratuitously mean. The depiction of Ayano's mother Uchika in the flashbacks is also less sympathetic.
  • Adaptational Seriousness: While the manga is quite light-hearted and often comedic (at least in the early parts), the anime adopts a much more somber tone, changes some characters' personalities and rearranges the storyline significantly, making the two versions very distinct from each other.
  • Adapted Out: Viggo, the old badminton legend who eventually becomes Ayano's personal trainer doesn't appear in the anime, which is the biggest deviation from the manga along with Ayano's personality change.
  • Adults Are Useless: Zig-zagged in the anime. Tachibana is a very competent coach in both the sport and emotional side when it comes to Nagisa's issues, helping her out of her slump and noticing her problem with her knee. However, he doesn't do anything regarding Ayano's issues even after learning her backstory or after she becomes a Jerkass with permanent Empty Eyes during the tournament.
  • Aerith and Bob: Practically everyone in the manga and anime have Japanese names. And then there's Connie Christensen and Viggo. Averted since both Connie and Viggo are from Denmark, where those names are no less normal than Nagisa or Kentarou are in Japan.
  • Alliterative Name: Connie Christensen.
  • Art Evolution: The manga starts off making most of characters borderline Noodle People, save for the notably short Ayano. Faces are generally more simple and cutesy, fitting the lighthearted tone of the beginning of the story. Towards the semi finals of the first tournament, the characters were given bigger proportions and more realistic, serious faces, which also coincides with the manifestation of Ayano's dark side in the finals. The art style then evolves into something more cartoony with crisp outlines resembing the ones in My Hero Academia. Overall, speed lines gets increasingly used every badminton match, regardless of artstyle change.
  • Awesomeness by Analysis: Riko isn't particularly fast or athletic, but she compensates with a great ability to analyze the opponent and adapt her playstyle during a match. This notably allows her to win against Hashidzume Emi, who was technically a much more skilled player.
  • Birds of a Feather: That's how Kaoruko sees her relationship with Ayano. To her, they are "meant to love each other" because they're both jerks, except she doesn't try to pretend otherwise. Miki, however, knows full well that Kaoruko herself isn't as bad as she pretends to be.
  • Boyish Short Hair: Nagisa and Rui both have this style (see Lady Looks Like a Dude below).
  • Career-Ending Injury: Kentarou was good enough to be selected to go to the Olympics, but a knee injury ruined his chances. Because of that, he does all he can to avoid the same fate to Nagisa when it turns out her right knee is fragile (due her height and weight putting a lot a pressure on it). Which includes stopping her match against Connie when they were tied and it seemed like it would never end, causing the latter no end of frustration.
  • Centipede's Dilemma: Nagisa's main problem in the beginning of the series, as she's overthinking her and her opponent's moves, instead of just playing for the fun of it.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: While the manga's mood doesn't get as dark as the anime's, it does get more serious and bittersweet after Ayano and Nagisa's match in volume 5.
  • Childhood Friends: Ayano and Elena have been friends since kindergarten.
    • Yukiteru Hayama and the Isehara siblings have also known each other since they were little.
  • Closest Thing We Got: In the manga, when Nagisa has to sit out of the next tournament to rest her knee and avoid what could become a Career-Ending Injury, they need someone to replace her in the team, but the club is short on members. So the club manager Elena volunteers to take a crash course on the basics of badminton, arguing that she's already familiar with sports from her basketball club in middle school. This is rather downplayed however, as the coach places her in a low-stakes match and her opponent ends being a last-minute replacement too.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Kaoruko is very good at psychologically attacking her opponents in order to give herself an edge.
  • Commonality Connection: Kentaro bonds with Nagisa after showing her that they're both tall and worked hard to get were they are.
  • Cool Shades: Kentaro is introduced wearing these in the anime, which makes him look more like some fishy model recruiter than like a badminton coach.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: Nagisa suffers from this. Being tall, a lack of proper training, and having faced only weak opponents means that she is over-reliant on her powerful jumping smash, for which all-rounded players like Ayano have been trained to counter. Her height also makes her heavy, and so she tends to use too much energy for a very limited move.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle:
    • Most of Ayano's offscreen and onscreen matches are this, especially in middle school.
    • Michi's showdown with Connie in the Inter-High can't even be called a fight. While she makes some impressive and desperate plays, ultimately she gets taken down rather easily and puts an end to the era of the Three Queens.
  • Cute and Psycho:
    • Ayano has shades of this, especially when she sports her trademark Empty Eyes.
    • Connie also shows a slightly creepy side against Nagisa, when she realizes she has found an opponent who could give her a run for her money. As the match progresses, she feels the fatigue, the pain, the numbness in her limbs, has a hard time breathing, and she loves every second of it, to the point her own teammates call her a "pervert".
  • Cute Sports Club Manager: Club advisor Miyako admits she doesn't know much about badminton, but does her best to support the team, among them is bringing Kentaro to train the team. Later on Elena also joins the club as manager (voluntarily in the anime, while she kinda just goes with the flow in the manga).
  • Darker and Edgier: The anime considerably tones down the comedy and adds much more drama to the point of altering several characters' personalities. Case in point, the aftermath of Connie and Ayano's match early on. In the manga, Connie says good bye to Ayano with a sweet smile, playfully teases her and tells her she wants them to meet again, and that she will tell her more about her Missing Mom when they do. In the anime she ruthlessly tells her that Uchika is her mom and that Ayano's efforts will be worthless if they aren't acknowledged by her. She seems to feel nothing but disdain for Ayano and leaves her standing with a Thousand-Yard Stare. Quite the contrast.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Connie shows a new variety of emotions after being dragged into the bathroom by Yuika and Hina. An extra chapter in the manga shows that defrosting Connie is the first thing these two did when she came into the club, playfully embarrassing her in all sorts of ways to get her off her high horse.
  • Demoted to Extra: Noriko is a weird example. In the manga she follows Elena as co-manager of the team but doesn't really do or say much. In the anime she's more assertive in her few appearances, but is left out of the club. So manga!Noriko and anime!Noriko are both minor characters, but in completely different ways.
  • Distant Finale: The final few chapter skip ahead two years to Ayano's final year of high school.
  • Dull Eyes of Unhappiness: Ayano gets these eyes when she's serious.
  • Empty Eyes: In both manga and anime, if she sports this eyes during a game, expect a curb stomp from her as Nagisa, Kaoruko and, in the manga doubles match against Fredericia, Connie found out.
  • Expository Pronoun: Used extensively with Mashiko Rui in the Inter-High arc. Being more or less The Lad-ette, Rui speaks with the hypermasculine pronoun "ore" but switches to the more conventionally feminine "watashi" when she sarcastically talks "nicely". It turns out that because of her complex of being The Unfavorite in her family, despite being more talented than her brother, she supposedly used a masculine pronoun as a way to put herself above him. Once she has gotten over her issues, she keeps talking in a very masculine way, but sticks to "watashi".
  • Eyes Always Closed: Sora is usually seen this way, and she only opens them when serious.
  • Face Fault: Kentaro slips and crashes to the floor when Riko identifies him as "the future criminal."
  • Foreign Exchange Student: Connie is from Denmark.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: While part of manga!Connie's motivation is to be together with Uchika and Ayano as family, another part of her wants to defeat Ayano to prove Uchika that she's her "no. 1 daughter". In the anime, only the latter motivation remains and it is treated much more ominously… until episode 9, where she now wants to be a family like in the manga, and also wants Ayano to acknowledge her.
  • Hates Their Parent: Predictably, being abandoned by her mother left Ayano with abandonment issue, and cause her to hate her mother, it took some time for Ayano to forgive her mother and even then Ayano makes it clear they could never become family again.
  • Huge School Girl: Nagisa is easily the tallest girl in the badminton team. This caused her some angst because her schoolmates said behind her back that she only won because she's tall, ignoring all her hard work.
    • Connie is by far the tallest player from Fredericia Girls, standing a head taller than the second-tallest player on her team, although this could be due to her being the only Danish person on the team (on average, Europeans tend to be taller than Japanese).
  • I Regret Nothing: What anime!Uchika tells Elena about abandoning Ayano because she believes it will lead to her excelling in badminton. Averted in the manga, where she does start to have regrets later on.
  • Improbably Female Cast: The badminton team (and the school) is co-ed, but it's easy to forget this detail since there are only a couple of guys on the team, and they get much less attention than the girls (see page image).
  • Innocently Insensitive: Episode nine reveals Connie to be this. After her first match with Ayano she quite ruthlessly tells her that all of her work will be for nothing if Uchika doesn't acknowledge her, unaware that Uchika left Ayano while she was sick and the girl suffers from serious issues because of it. She returns later in episode nine with the intent to apologize for her words and wanting to become a full family. Her previous behavior comes back to bite her when Ayano gives her a Curb-Stomp Battle and coldly refuses her offer.
  • I Work Alone: In the anime Connie doesn't believe much in teamwork, and is completely confident she can win a double game alone. This is much less the case in the manga where she is confident she can win alone but ends up accepting Hina's help, and is generally much less demeaning of her teammates.
  • Jerkass Realization: In the anime, Nagisa realizes how harsh she's been acting towards her teammates at the end of the second episode.
    • Connie also realizes how selfish she had been acting after failing to win her match against Ayano and Riko alone and straining her ankle, forcing her teammate to save the game. That realization doesn't apply to how she treated Ayano however.
    • Connie returns in episode nine and seems to want to mend the fences between her and Ayano. Unfortunately, Ayano isn't having any of that.
  • Lady Looks Like a Dude:
    • Nagisa, before she… developed. Mainly because she had short, boy-style hair and was obsessed with a sport. Her classmates made fun of her for this.
    • Rui is a similar but more extreme example; not only is she just as tall as Nagisa and also has short Messy Hair, she acts and talks in a very uncouth and masculine way.
  • Long-Lost Relative: After Uchika adopted Connie in Denmark, she effectively became Ayano's "little sister", which is the reason she came to Japan to find her. Ayano, however, doesn't know any of that and wonders why Connie calls her "big sis".
  • Male Gaze: Occasionally the camera gives focus to the girls' backsides.
  • Mistaken for Pedophile: Viggo gets this treatment in the manga, as his secretary Anne points out his strange obsession with young, talented female players. In the anime, it's Kentarou who's the butt of this joke early on.
  • Mood Dissonance: The fun and peppy opening song fits the manga's pretty light-hearted mood, but is quite at odds with the much more drama-driven anime.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: In episode 10, Elena finally acknowledged how bad of an idea it was to drag Ayano back into badminton.
  • Nervous Wreck: Hashidzume Emi is presented as Yokohama's ace, on par with Nozomi and Nagisa… but she's absolutely terrified of Ayano and needs her teammate to keep her composure for her during their doubles match against Ayano and Riko. She also admits to always have stomachaches before important matches, and obviously has zero self-confidence when her coach doesn't praise her.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: With Connie, this is played straight in the Japanese version and averted in the English dub where she speaks with a Danish accent.
    • In Episode 10, when Uchika says “Godnat, Connie” (“Goodnight, Connie”) on the phone, there are no hints of an accent at all, which becomes rather jarring when you realize that in the episode before, Connie’s Danish had such a thick accent that it was nearly impossible to understand what she actually said, despite Danish being her native language.
  • Passionate Sports Girl: Nagisa is very passionate about badminton, but her defeat against Ayano made her take out her frustrations on her teammates, making many of them leave the club.
  • Perpetual Smiler: Viggo, an old Dannish man who is also a badminton legend, never lets go of his smile, which gives him a cunning air.
  • Phenotype Stereotype: Justified in Connie's case; since she comes from Denmark, it makes sense that she has blonde hair and blue eyes.
  • Product Placement: Yonex products are featured prominently in the series, ranging from the racquets, shuttlecocks, clothing and even footwear.
  • Spit Take: Nagisa does this when Kaoruko asks Kentaro to see her after her upcoming match.
  • Technician vs. Performer: Nagisa is the technician, while Ayano is the performer. Ayano has a ton of natural talent, while Nagisa has to constantly practice to try to catch up. Subverted somewhat, in that Ayano put in a lot of hard work from a young age to get as talented as she is.
  • Terrible Artist: When Nagisa tries to draw a map for Ayano, she gets her lost. Connie compares it to the drawings of an elementary schooler. It's also a rare bit of humor that the anime added.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Kaoruko gives a long-winded one to Ayano in the manga during a private match in the night, calling her out for pretending to be someone she's not and claiming that they're really no different (i.e. equally selfish). This actually gives Ayano the incentive to become kinder and more sociable.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: If we go by the volume 5 cover, we're supposed to imagine Ayano with red eyes when she enters her serious mode. That's how scary she is.
  • Offscreen Romance: Nagisa and Tachibana, if the finale is any indication. Multiple characters comment on Tachibana being Nagisa's boyfriend after high school, but the latter says nothing's happened because of their busy careers.
  • Second Place Is for Losers: None of the people who reach 2nd are ever satisfied. In the finale alone, Micchi ends up as 2nd in her recent championship, but only complains about losing to "a middle schooler"; meanwhile Kaoruko has built up a reputation of coming up second under Ayano in all Inter-High tournaments, which only further fuels her to win in Ayano's final exhibition tournament.
  • Shout-Out: The autumn school festival after the Interhigh shows a waffle stand sign with a Minion on it.
  • Shown Their Work: Connie is a constant source of this, from her name and character design, right down to the house she grew up in.
    • In the anime's episode 9, it is clear that the production-crew had done a good deal of research regarding Connie. In a flashback, we see the house that Connie and Uchika lived in, which looks, in every way imaginable, like an old house (from the 70s-80s) in Denmark would look like, complete with the furniture and decoration looking surprisingly Danish, along with the surrounding field making it look like the house might just exist in real-life.
      • Connie says 2 different lines that, while clearly spoken with a very thick Japanese accent, are clearly in grammatically correct Danish. The first, "Vent lige et øjeblik!" ("Wait just a moment!") comes when she interrupts the practice-game early in the episode. The other, "Så kom bare an!" ("Well, come on then!") comes just before her match with Ayano.
    • Connie's name itself, is surprisingly enough also Danish, which in itself is not quite usual. Although some translators disagree on how her last name should be spelled (neither spelling is incorrect, though). See Spell My Name With An S.
    • Every outfit Connie wears aside from her casual outfit includes the Danish flag somewhere. The first time we see her, it's placed subtly between her shoulders. The uniform she wore when playing in Denmark and being scouted by Uchika had it placed on her left chest (which is the normal place for sports-clubs in Denmark to place their logo). The uniform used by "Fredericia Girls High School" later on (as seen in the page image) has it covering the entire left half of the uniform.
    • "Fredericia Girls' High School" plays a bit with this. While "Fredericia" is a real town in Denmark with a population of around 40.000, there's no "Girls' High School". More likely, it is supposed to be "Fredericia High School Girls' Badminton Team", which (while still not a real thing, since high schools in Denmark typically don't have sports-teams) is more believable, unless "Fredericia Girls' High School" is supposed to be a high school in Japan, in which case, there's no real reason for the school to have a non-Japanese sounding name.
    • At the end of the episode, Connie is seen walking around at night with nothing on her arms, yet doesn’t seem the least bit cold, even though her teammates are wearing long-sleeves uniforms. This is either a case of the animators being lazy, or it’s because they knew Connie would be used to the colder climate in Denmark, and thus doesn’t need a jacket when it gets a bit colder at night in Japan.
  • Slasher Smile: In the manga, Ayano can sports this along with her Empty Eyes when her focus is at its peak during a match − notably against Connie. The anime keeps the eyes, but removes the smile.
  • Sore Loser: Two notable examples.
    • Although she may not look like it, Ayano hates to lose and makes up all sorts of excuses when she and Riko lose the double against Connie and Tagajo. She also did it when she loses against Kaoruko in middle school in the manga, giving various excuses to her mom Uchika.
    • Her self-proclaimed rival Kaoruko was so frustrated that she couldn't beat Ayano that she resorted to tie her up and give her her own cold to prevent her from playing in top shape.
  • Spell My Name With An S: Nobody seems to be able to agree how Connie's last name is supposed to be spelled. Sometimes, it's written as "Christensen", while other times, it's written as "Christiansen". It certainly doesn't help that both names are common, Danish last names, and that both names are written the exact same way in Japanese, since the pronunciation is fairly similar between them.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Connie seems to be as tall as Nagisa, but she's far more feminine and graceful. Being Danish, it's only natural for Connie to be more than a head taller than the rest of her team, since European people are generally taller than Japanese people, without it affecting their looks.
  • There Are No Therapists: Ayano has a lot of trauma and abandoment issues due to her backstory but hasn't gotten any professional help we can see.
  • Those Two Guys: Yuu and Sora are just there to represent the average players who don't get much of a chance to shine, and serve as a pep squad the rest of the time. In fact, aside from Nagisa, Riko and Ayano, Kitakomachi’s players rarely get any screen time, to the point where one can be forgiven for forgetting their names from one episode to the next.
  • Title Drop: Each episode title is a spoken line in the same episode.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Nagisa is tall, short-haired and slightly gruff while Riko has long, smooth hair and generally acts more girly and refined (though not overly so).
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Downplayed. In the manga, Ayano gradually grows out of her shy Cloud Cuckoolander personality and ends up sporting a smug smile with Empty Eyes during her matches, becoming much more sarcastic in the process. Nevertheless, glimpses of her initial quirky self still seep through on occasions, and she still deeply cares for her teammates. She however realizes later how disrespectful she is to her opponents with that attitude. Kentarou assumes that, because badminton has always been a part of Ayano's life, she has never learned the proper etiquette to respect the game. Kaoruko later suggests that that smugness has always been Ayano's real personality and her cutesy demeanor was an unconscious act to convince herself she could make friends.
    • Played straight and for drama in the anime. Ayano's bitter confrontation with Connie utterly breaks her, turning her into a cold and aloof machine who doesn't seem to care for anyone anymore.
  • Tough Love: Uchika honestly believes that her abandonment of Ayano will make her into a great badminton player and doesn't seem to mind if her daughter ends up hating her. At the very least she does admit that what she did to Ayano was unforgivable, however she also doesn't show remorse over it, and it's even implied her love for Ayano is superficial.
  • Tsundere: Kaoruko is a huge one towards Ayano. When she talks to her, she acts all high and mighty, but she supports her wholeheartedly during Ayano's matches in the Inter-High arc. Miki even calls them "friends" despite Kaoruko's objections.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Kaoroku forcibly passing on her flu to Ayano, all for the sake of the two playing on an even playing field, is what sets the chain of events for Ayano's current issues.
  • Worf Had the Flu: Literally, Ayano's first defeat against a player who's not her mom in both manga and anime is when Kaoruko gave Ayano the flu before their match. Even so, Kaoruko wasn't even able to win against Ayano by a wide margin.
  • Your Days Are Numbered: Chapter 62 reveals that Uchika is ill and doesn't have much time left. Which puts a whole new light on her behavior.