Initial D (頭文字D)

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Initial D is the 3rd comic about road racer which came next “Baribari Legend” and “Tunnel Nuketara Sky☆Blue” written by Shuichi Shigeno. Baribari Legend is about motorcycle sport. Shinya Nakano who is a retired Japanese Grand Prix motorcycle road racer and known as such a big fan of Baribari Legend that his number 56 came from the number Gun Koma who is the protagonist of Baribari Legend uses. “Tunnel Nuketara Sky☆Blue” is an archetype of Initial D.

The story develops with a central focus on Takumi Fujiwara who is an ordinary high school student. He helps delivery of bean curd; the store his father runs. While he drives a TOYOTA AE86 Sprinter Trueno (commonly called 86) along slap of Akina mountain pass, he learned driving techniques. He can drives downhill super-fast and faces challenges of road racers.
Akina mountain pass doesn’t exist in real but Haruna mountain pass in Gunma prefecture serves as a model for Akina mountain pass. Other names of place really do exist.
End of life of 86 was 1987 but due to the popularity of this comic, used car market price rose sharply.
Shinichiro Miki who is the voice actor of Takumi bought 86 affected by this anime.

This comic became a big hit not only in Japan but all over Asia and made into live-action film in Hong Kong. The director is a Hong Konger Andrew Lau, Jay Chou, who is a Taiwanese actor, played Takumi, Edison Chen and Shown Yue, who are Hong Konger actors, played Ryosuke Takahashi and Takeshi Nakazato and Japanese actress An Suzuki played a role of Natsuki Mogi. And this summer, in the memoriam of the 35th commemoration from the first publish of Young Magazine.

The appeal of this anime is SUPER EUROBEAT at battle scenes! I didn’t like eurobeat before I watched this anime but after that, I always listen “SUPER EUROBEAT presents InitialD D Selection” when I drive.
In the anime, most of cars are drawn by 3DCG and re-created shape, move and sound of engine and squeal ascetically. At the time of broadcast of First Stage was the early time when CG was introduced to TV anime. Move of car was designed by using physics engine at the time of Fourth Stage.

The character I like the most is Takumi Fujiwara. He looks always sleepy but he is very cool when he drives. I think the most famous scene is that Ryosuke sent a letter of challenge with rose bouquet to Takumi and the scenes Takahashi brothers praise each other.

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/ Takahashi Ryosuke / Takahashi Keisuke / Fujiwara Takumi /

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