Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Blue Spring Ride Overview


Futaba Yoshioka wants to "reset" her life. In junior high, girls ostracized Yoshioka because too many junior high boys liked her. The only boy Yoshioka liked, Kou Tanaka, moved away before she could tell him how she felt. Now in high school, Yoshioka is determined to be unladylike so her new friends will not become jealous of her. While living her new life contentedly, she meets Kou again, but he now uses the name Kou Mabuchi and has a cold attitude. He tells her that he liked her too in junior high, but feels differently now.

Main characters

Futaba Yoshioka (Yoshioka Futaba) Voiced by: Maaya Uchida 

Since middle school, Futaba has always believed that boys were too rough and violent. Tanaka Kou was the only exception, and Futaba wanted to know him better. The two share brief, sentimental memories — including a plan to go to the summer festival together. After accidentally telling Naitou, Kou's friend, that she hates all boys within Kou's hearing proximity, she worries about his opinion of her but convinces herself that he understands he is an exception. The summer festival arrives, and Kou doesn't show up. Returning from the summer vacation, Futaba hears that Kou transferred to another school without explanation. Futaba realizes how much she liked Kou and regrets not telling him how she felt. In high school, Futaba's character is drastically different. No longer feminine or cute, she makes herself as unattractive as possible. Futaba was an outcast in middle school because the girls were jealous of her popularity with boys. Determined to have friends in high school, she sacrifices her true, girly self for her classmates' approval. Although Futaba is strong-willed, stubborn, and passionate, she prefers to be accepted for who she isn't than ostracized for who she is. Futaba eventually falls in love with Kou again. However, she constantly worries that he has no feelings for her and believes he only sees her as a past crush. She is dating Touma. Futaba is portrayed by Tsubasa Honda in the live action movie adaptation.

Kou Mabuchi (Mabuchi Kō) Voiced by: Yūki Kaji

During his time in middle school with Futaba, Kou was rather small and gentle. He became very fond of her throughout their experiences together but seemingly disappeared during a summer break. Making an appearance in Futaba's high school, it is revealed that he was unable to attend the summer festival because of familial issues. No longer "Tanaka Kou," he is now referred to as "Mabuchi Kou." His personality has also taken a turn, for he is now more masculine, sarcastic, and crude. In addition, he has extremely pessimistic views about himself and about his brother. Despite these changes, it is evident that Kou is still an overall kind person. When Kominato visited his house and found his secret box full of things from middle school, Kou confessed to Kominato that he still likes Futaba. To him, Futaba seems to be a remainder of his happier days—the days before his family experiences turmoil. Kou is portrayed by Masahiro Higashide in the live action movie adaptation.

Toma Kikuchi (Kikuchi Tōma) Touma is a boy in Futaba's year, making his first appearance in Chapter 12. He initially has a very bad impression of Futaba, during which she trips and ends up accidentally grabbing him. However, he eventually softens up to her when he notices how remorseful she feels about the incident. Due to his earnest appearance, his intentions after often misunderstood, usually causing Kou to get jealous over his interaction with Futaba. His friends call him "Goodie-goodie" and "Hasabe" due to his strait-laced and honest behavior. He has a piercing on his left ear and likes wombats. He falls for Futaba's good nature and finds himself wishing that she would shift her affections onto him. Despite this he constantly supports her and gives her confidence. Right now, Touma is Futaba's boyfriend. Toma is portrayed by Yudai Chiba in the live action movie adaptation.

Yuri Makita (Makita Yūri) Voiced by: Ai Kayano

Introduced in the first chapter, Yūri's high school life is parallel to Futaba's middle school life. She is very cute, causing her to be despised by many girls in her class, and she is often left alone. Yūri gets by very well, however, for she prefers to be hated for who she truly is than to be liked for someone she isn't. Yūri and Futaba soon become best friends. She falls in love with Kou after he helps her during a class leader's camp. Yūri greatly treasures her friendship with Futaba, but often gets jealous of Futaba's closeness with Kou. Yuri will be portrayed by Izumi Fujimoto in the live action movie adaptation.

Shuko Murao (Murao Shūko) Voiced by: Mikako KomatsuMuch like Yūri, Shuuko is another "lone wolf." She is very beautiful but has a cold exterior that drives others away. Due to experiences in middle school, Shuuko fails to trust girls. She has been in love with Tanaka-sensei, Kou's older brother, since her first year of high school after attending a guidance session between the two of them. Eventually, her trust in female relationships was restored after becoming friends with Futaba and Yūri. Shuko is portrayed by Yua Shinkawa in the live action movie adaptation.

Aya Kominato (Kominato Aya) Voiced by: KENN

Outgoing and spontaneous, Aya seems to be the only character without social problems. He is very open, caring, and sometimes even dense. He has an unrequited crush on Shuuko. Aya harbors a hatred for Tanaka-sensei, and initially did not like Kou due to his relation to him. He is good at Math. Aya is portrayed by Ryo Yoshizawa in the live action movie adaptation.

Yoichi Tanaka (Tanaka Yōichi) Voiced by: Daisuke Hirakawa

Kou's older brother by eight years. He works as an English teacher at Futaba's high school. Futaba was initially interested in Youichi upon entering high school because he reminded her of Kou, but was unaware that the two were brothers. Youichi knows about Shuuko's crush on him but always rebuffs her advances, telling her that he will never see her as anything more than a student. However, he never hesitates to help her in times of need and is happy whenever he sees that she is fitting in. He enjoys a playful 'rivalry' with Aya over Shuuko. He often gives Futaba advice whenever she feels unsure about herself or about Kou. Yoichi is portrayed by Yū Koyanagi in the live action movie adaptation.

Yui Narumi (Narumi Yui)

A classmate of Kou's from junior high. Her father was in the same hospital as Kou's mother. They got to know each other. Yui's father has recently died causing Kou to keep in touch with her more frequently, sparking jealousy by Futaba but Kou states he is just helping out a friend because he can relate to her. However, after finding out about Kou's interest in Futuba, Aya addresses concern about Kou getting too close to Yui which he believes is causing a strain on Kou's relationship with Futuba. Yui attends the Cultural Festival where she notices Kou closeness with Futaba. It is revealed in Chapter 22 that she still has feelings for Kou. Yui is portrayed by Mitsuki Takahata in the live action movie adaptation.

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