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Boys Over Flowers
HanaYoriDango vol01 Cover.jpg
Cover art of Boys Over Flowers volume 1 tankōbon published by Shueisha
花より男子
(Hana Yori Dango)
Genre Romantic comedy
Manga
Author Yoko Kamio
Publisher Shueisha
English publisher United States Canada Viz Media
Demographic Shōjo
Magazine Margaret
Original run October 1992September 2003
Volumes 37 (List of volumes)
Live-action film
Hana Yori Dango
Director Yasuyuki Kusuda
Released August 19, 1995
TV anime
Director Shigeyasu Yamauchi
Studio Toei Animation
Network Asahi Broadcasting Corporation
Original run September 8, 1996August 31, 1997
Episodes 51
Anime film
Hana Yori Dango: The Movie
Director Shigeyasu Yamauchi
Studio Toei Animation
Released March 8, 1997
Runtime 90 minutes
TV drama
Meteor Garden
traditional Chinese: 流星花園
Director Tsai Yueh Hsun
Network Republic of China Chinese Television System
Original run April 2001August 2001
Episodes 19
TV drama
Meteor Garden II
traditional Chinese: 流星花園II
Director Wang Ming Tai
Jiang Feng Hong
Mai Da Jie
Zheng De Hua
Network Republic of China Chinese Television System
Original run November 2002December 2002
Episodes 31
TV drama
Hana Yori Dango
Director Yasuharu Ishii
Network Tokyo Broadcasting System
Original run October 21, 2005December 16, 2005
Episodes 9
TV drama
Hana Yori Dango Returns
Director Yasuharu Ishii
Osamu Katayama
Daisuke Yamamuro
Network Tokyo Broadcasting System
Original run January 5, 2007March 16, 2007
Episodes 11
Live-action film
Hana Yori Dango Final
Director Yasuharu Ishii
Released June 28, 2008
TV drama
Boys Over Flowers
Korean:꽃보다男子
Director Jun Ki Sang
Network South Korea Korean Broadcasting System
Original run January 5, 2009March 31, 2009
Episodes 25
Anime and Manga Portal

Boys Over Flowers (花より男子 Hana Yori Dango?) is a Japanese shōjo manga series by Yoko Kamio. It was serialized in the bi-weekly anthology magazine Margaret, which is aimed at high-school-age girls. The manga series ran continuously from October 1992 to September 2003, and was collected into 37 tankōbon volumes. In 1996, it received the Shogakukan Manga Award for shōjo.[1]

Recently, the series has started to be released in a deluxe edition (larger pages and with all the color artwork from the magazine reproduced). The manga has been remade into 3 drama productions (in Taiwan, Japan, and Korea, along with one spin-off, 2 live action movies, 1 anime movie and also an anime series.[2] Hana Yori Dango is the best-selling shōjo manga in Japan of all time (54 million copies in 2005.)[3]

Contents

Title

The title Hana yori Dango, is a pun on a Japanese saying, "Dumplings before Flowers" (花より団子, "Hana yori Dango" lit. "dango (rice dumplings) rather than flowers"). "Dumplings before flowers" is a well-known Japanese expression that refers to people who attend Hanami, but rather than enjoying the beauty of the flowers, head straight for the food vendor booths, preferring tangible things like food and drink to the abstract appreciation of the flowers’ beauty.[4] The author creates the pun by changing the kanji of the title to mean "Boys over Flowers" (花より男子?). Note that "boys" (男子?) is normally read danshi (だんし?), but the furigana indicates that it reads dango (だんご?).

Story

Makino Tsukushi, a working-class girl, attends an elite escalator school called Eitoku Academy (英徳学園 Eitoku Gakuen ?), populated by children and older youths from rich, high-society families. She is the "weed" of the school, surrounded by all the rich kids, including the "Flowery Four" (F4). The F4 leader and son of the wealthiest, most powerful family in Japan, Domyouji Tsukasa, takes an interest in Tsukushi, because she is the only girl at Eitoku who does not fawn over him. However, his hot-headed nature and bullying ways are originally a major turn-off for Tsukushi, who has her sights set on someone else (Hanazawa Rui).

The violinist Hanazawa Rui, Tsukasa's best friend, becomes Tsukushi's first serious romantic interest. He is a quiet and cool guy, but he has a soft spot for his close friend and Tsukushi's idol, the model Todou Shizuka, whom he harbored feelings for since childhood. His character is a bit complex, and always has changing feelings for Tsukushi, but above all cares about her a lot.

The other two members of the F4 are Mimasaka Akira, the laid-back peacemaker of the group, and Nishikado Sōjirō, an unrepentant playboy. They both usually have at least one girlfriend at any one time; Akira prefers older women because the women of his household (his mother and two younger sisters) are quite silly. Sojiro is happy to be in casual relationships with many women, although we later discover that at one time he was in love with a childhood friend.

Over the course of the series, however, Tsukushi's feelings evolve, and she begins to appreciate the degree of change that occurred in Tsukasa once he fell in love with her. He becomes fiercely loyal to Tsukushi and believes in her beyond all doubt, and slowly gets her to see him in a different light. The physical obstacles and emotional challenges of their rocky high-school courtship form the basis of the story. Other themes include Tsukushi's attempt to fit in at the school, the problems of her family's lifestyle and income, and the decadent lifestyle of upper-class Japanese girls.

Media

Manga

Recently in July 2006, a short story was released in issue 15 of Margaret magazine.

Anime

An anime series was produced by Toei Animation and broadcast by Asahi Broadcasting Corporation. It ran from 8 September 1996 to 31 August 1997 with a total of 51 episodes. A 1997 anime movie was also produced, however it deviated from the plot of the actual manga as it was set in an alternate universe and characters were placed into new roles to suit the movie's new story. The anime movie is reminiscent of the American film Flashdance, Tsukushi is an aspiring dancer attempting to win a role in a large stage production.

Live-action TV series

Due to its immense popularity, Hana Yori Dango has been adapted into TV series several times: Meteor Garden, a 2001 Taiwanese series broadcast on CTS, followed by Meteor Garden II in 2002; Hana Yori Dango, a 2005 Japanese series broadcast on TBS, followed in 2007 by Hana Yori Dango Returns and also, most recently in 2009, a successful South Korean adaptation, Boys Over Flowers, broadcast on KBS.[5] It has also been confirmed that there will be a Philippine version coming out in 2011 of this series called Brat Boys Beyond.

Live-action films

In 2008, Hana Yori Dango Final was released in theatres on June 28, 2008[6] to end the Japanese TV series, all the original actors reprised their roles. The movie focused solely on Tsukasa and Tsukushi's adventure to retrieve the precious family heirloom: a tiara called "Smile of Venus" which was stolen by a mysterious man in black. The film has proven to be a huge success in Japanese cinemas remaining at #1 at the box office for several weeks, earning over US$ 70 million. The DVD for the drama is currently the #3 Best Selling Japanese Film DVD of all time after a mere 4 weeks of entering the charts, having stayed on top of them for all 4 weeks. The DVD was also the #1 best-selling DVD that was released in 2008.[7] A cameo appearance was made by Naohito Fujiki, who played Hanazawa Rui in the original first live action movie,[8] Hana Yori Dango, which was made in 1995 starring Uchida Yuki as Makino Tsukushi.

Music

Series Opening Theme Ending Theme Insert Songs
Meteor Garden (Taiwanese) "Qing Fei De Yi" (情非得已) by Harlem Yu "Ni Yao De Ai" by Penny Tai "Love of My Life" by Queen
Meteor Garden II (Taiwanese) "Can't Lose You" by F4 "The Season of Fireworks" by F4 "Broken Vow" by Lara Fabian
Hana Yori Dango (Japanese) "Wish" by Arashi - "Planetarium" by Ai Otsuka
Hana Yori Dango Returns (Japanese) "Love so sweet" by Arashi - "Flavor of Life" by Hikaru Utada
Hana Yori Dango Final (Japanese) "One Love" by Arashi - "Kisshug" by Aiko
Boys Over Flowers (Korean) "Paradise" by T-Max "Because I'm Stupid" by SS501 "Stand by Me" by SHINee
"One More Time" by Tree Bicycle
"Lucky" by Ashily

Characters

Tsukushi Makino (牧野 つくし Makino Tsukushi?)

Tsukushi Makino is the main female character in Boys Over Flowers, and is one of the very few students at the prestigious Eitoku High School to come from an 'unwealthy' family. Her family is so poor that they can barely afford to pay Makino's tuition, but her parents push her to continue at the school so she can 'seduce a rich man' and take them out of poverty.
Tsukushi is not thrilled about being stuck at Eitoku, and is determined to remain as invisible as possible until graduation. However, she sticks her neck out to defend her friend, who accidentally bumps into F4 leader Tsukasa Domyoji on a staircase. The next day, a red tag is found hanging in Tsukushi's locker, the F4's "declaration of war," officially marking her for future torment from the F4 and the rest of the student body. But, unlike most of the F4's targets, Makino stands up for herself, showing how strong a 'weed' can be. She attacks Domyoji in the hallway and presents him with a red tag of her own.
In this process, she lets her fierce determination and her stubborn, hardworking ways show through, and in the end turns all of the F4 into her friends.
At first, Tsukushi hates all of the F4 except Hanazawa Rui, (whom she has romantic feelings towards). But, as Rui goes off to chase after Shizuka, Tsukushi slowly falls in love with the hotheaded leader, Domyoji.

Tsukasa Domyoji (道明寺 司 Dōmyōji Tsukasa?)

Tsukasa Domyoji is the leader of the F4. At the beginning of the series, he is Tsukushi's biggest enemy, but as the story progresses, he becomes her love interest.
Tsukasa is the heir to Domyoji Enterprises, and his family is extremely rich. They own various houses around the world, including an actual island, a house in Canada, and a house in New York City where his parents live most of the year.
Domyoji spent much of his childhood on his own; his parents were always overseas, and his older sister--as loving as she could be--was always busy studying and eventually married and moved to Los Angeles. His mother, Kaede, is cold to him, and although she loves him, wants to control his life for the sake of preserving the family name. Tsukasa often calls her "the old hag" and "witch," an opinion shared by nearly all of his friends.
Tsukushi's retaliation in the hallway sparks Domyoji's interest, and he is immediately attracted to her daring and strength (the traits he used to admire in his older sister). Despite the harassment he puts her through to keep up appearances, he also constantly tries to do things to impress her - such as trying unsuccessfully to straighten his hair after she tells him that she can't stand his curly-top.
Because he has grown up in luxury and is used to always getting his way, Domyoji is initially not very good at interacting with Tsukushi. He frequently makes fun of her family's poverty and responds angrily when she refuses to do as he says. As time passes, however, he begins to mature and develop a greater understanding of how to interact positively with others. It's because of his love to Tsukushi.

Rui Hanazawa (花沢 類 Hanazawa Rui?)

The violinist Rui Hanazawa, Tsukasa's best friend, becomes Tsukushi's first serious romantic interest. He is generally quiet, but has a soft spot for his close friend and Tsukushi's idol, the model Shizuka Todo, whom he has harbored feelings for since childhood. His character is a bit complex, and his feelings for Tsukushi are in a nearly constant state of flux (varying from annoyance to love), but above all cares about her a lot. In season two of Hana Yori Dango, he grows closer with Makino, but he also claimed that he loved her and that he is the one that would make her happy, not Domyoji. They eventually become very close friends and she depends on him as a confidant. According to Tsukushi, Rui Hanazawa is the one who can heal her wounds and make her feel happy and calm again when hurt by feelings for Tsukasa.

It's commonly mistranslated that Rui had autism "as a child", when a more accurate translation is that he had autism "since I was a child". Rui has Asperger syndrome, which makes socializing difficult for him. He has trouble recognizing facial expressions: for example, when trying to draw Tsukasa, he drew an expressionless egg with curly hair. These are personality traits which he still holds.

Sojirou Nishikado (西門 総二郎 Nishikado Sōjirō?)

  • Voiced by: Yoshihiko Akaida (Japanese), Andrew Francis (English)
  • Drama actors: Kensaku Saeki and Shota Matsuda (Japanese version), Ken Chu (Taiwanese version), Kim Bum (Korean version)
  • Another member of F4, Sojirou is quiet and very interested in the tea ceremony, which is his family's business. For the most part, he and Mimasaka usually work to keep the peace within the group and following Domyoji. He reunites with his first love, Sara, whom he stood up and missed his chance with during his freshman year in high school. Later they confess their love for each other, but the relationship is unsalvageable (in the manga they both recognize that they missed their one chance to be together, and in the drama she has become engaged to someone else). Makino's close friend, Yuuki has feelings for him and it is uncertain whether he feels the same way. He is also one of the two playboys in the F4.

Akira Mimasaka (美作 あきら Mimasaka Akira?)

Mimasaka is arguably the kindest and most mature member of F4. His family is very powerful in the Japanese underground (in the manga they own a large trading company). He keeps his cool and rarely loses his temper, although when he does, even Domyoji has to run for the hills. Akira is the other of the group's two playboys. His tastes tend towards older women, mainly because of his young mother, who is only 38 years of age. He has two younger sisters who are twins. He is also the one F4 member who like to and only uses cash. Tsukushi also makes him realize that since he helps balance F4 out, a supporter if you will, that if he ever leaves them, then F4 will fall apart.

Friends

Enemies

Family

Relationships

Domyouji and Tsukushi's relationship has varied from the start. In the beginning it was one of hatred and physical violence, due to the fact he waged war against her all the time. However as Domyouji got to know her, he slowly falls in love with her though he has always held a cold heart. Due to this, he attempts to make advances on Makino, but always ends up fighting with her. In the manga they go through many hardships to be together. His stubborn mother, Makino's friendship with Rui, Makino's constantly changing feelings, and also Domyoji's frequent angry outbursts (as wells as many other problems) are always keeping them apart. In the end, their love wins out. Towards the end Domyoji makes an announcement to the media to go to New York for 4 years in order to take over his father's company. During this announcement period, Makino is troubled but later says that she will not go with him and that when he comes back she'll be waiting for him and will make him a happy man. The story ends with Domyoji going to New York and Makino watch his plane leave in the sky.

  • In the short story published after the series had concluded, Domyoji and company goes to Paris along with Makino to go to Shizuka's wedding with a French lawyer. Domyoji told Makino that he already paid for her four years of university to keep an eye on her. They agree to wait until Domyoji was done in three more years.
  • During the countless times that they break up, Domyoji goes crazy and returns to his "evil" and violent ways. However, when he is with Makino he is tamed and kind. Because of this, everyone around them is always saying that he is no good without Makino.
  • It is also hinted that at the end of the 4 years spent apart, they will get married.

Unauthorized Chinese Version

There is also an unauthorized and implied adaptation of the story that finished airing in mainland China. The show is called Meteor Shower (or Meteor Rain). It was broadcast by Hunan TV

The show producers speaking on Hunan TV's website state that Meteor Shower is not a remake of Meteor Garden which was very popular in Chinese-speaking world, but an original drama completely different from earlier shows and should not be considered an Hana Yori Dango adaptation, in an attempt to circumvent the controversial copyrights issue. 《新流星花园》改名引网友热议 制片方称一切为原创开路. English translation : Renaming of "The New Meteor Garden" causes heated debate among Chinese netizens, producers claim original development of plot, Hunan TV

The reason for this deliberate distancing from Hana Yori Dango is that producers of Meteor Shower and Hunan TV never obtained a proper Hana Yori Dango dramatization license, which cannot be granted until 2011 under the copyrights holder's licensing policy.

References

External links

Official sites








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