Gakuen Heaven

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Gakuen Heaven
Gakuen Heaven volume1.jpg
Volume 1 of the anime series
学園ヘヴン
(Gakuen Hebun)
Genre Shōnen-ai, Romance
Game
Gakuen Heaven: Boy's Love Scramble
Developer SPRAY
Publisher SPRAY (PC)
NEC Interchannel (PS2)
Prototype (PSP)
Platform PC, PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable
Released August 2, 2002 (PC)
November 27, 2003 (PS2)
November 26, 2009 (PSP)
Novel
Written by TAMAMI
Published by Biblos
Published October 2002
Manga
Written by You Higuri
Published by Biblos
English publisher
Published March 10, 2004
Volumes 1
Game
Gakuen Heaven: Boy's Love Scramble - Type B
Publisher NEC Interchannel
Platform PlayStation 2
Released July 22, 2004
Game
Gakuen Heaven: Okawari
Publisher Interchannel (PS2)
Prototype (PSP)
Platform PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable
Released February 27, 2005 (PS2)
February 10, 2011 (PSP)
Anime television series
Gakuen Heaven: Boy's Love Hyper
Directed by Takahashi Natsuko
Studio SPRAY, Visual Art's, Tokyo Kids
Licensed by
Network AT-X
Original run April 1, 2006June 24, 2006
Episodes 13
Portal icon Anime and Manga portal

Gakuen Heaven (Japanese: 学園ヘヴン Hepburn: Gakuen Hebun?, lit. "Academy Heaven") is a media franchise originating from the PC game Gakuen Heaven: Boy's Love Scramble, originally released by the company SPRAY. The franchise gradually expanded to include more games, drama CDs, manga, and anime.

Characters[edit]

Keita Itō (伊藤 啓太 Itō Keita?)
Voiced by: Fukuyama Jun
During the middle of the school year, he received a letter of admission from Bell Liberty Academy. Though he seems to be an average guy without any sort of special skills, he is a very warm and friendly person. The only skill he thought he had was luck. He seems to have forgotten who Kazuki is really. While he was young, he contracted the same virus that Hiroya Yoshizumi is infected with.
Kazuki Endō (遠藤 和希 Endō Kazuki?)
Voiced by: Sakurai Takahiro
He is Keita's classmate and the first friend Keita makes at BL Academy. He leads a double life as a student of BL Academy and as its chairman. The last wishes of the school's late chairman, Endō's grandfather, were for Endō to succeed his position. Endō's innocuous and perpetually friendly demeanor does not betray the fact that he is also an excellent executive. Endō is also a part of the school's handicrafts club. He is actually Keita's childhood friend who promised in the future that they could go to the same school.
Kaoru Saionji (西園寺 郁 Saionji Kaoru?)
Voiced by: Kamiya Hiroshi
He is the head of the school Treasury/Accounting department. Strikingly beautiful, he shares the same amount of influence as Tetsuya Niwa, and is called the "Queen" among students. He is very strong intellectually but performs very poorly in physical education. He is close to Omi since Elementary days, going as far as making him hack into the BL academy server when Omi didn't receive the platinum paper. He also has close contact with the chairman and contacts him if something sprouts up. Even though he is called the "Queen," he hates it when someone treats him like a female.
Tetsuya Niwa (丹羽 哲也 Niwa Tetsuya?)
Voiced by: Konishi Katsuyuki
As the president of the student council, he excels in almost everything, from academics to sports and extracurriculars; he is also known as the "King" at the academy. He regularly neglects his duties leaving them to the very last minute. He also has a tendency to call Kaoru, "Kaoru-chan," which results in the latter hurting him. He has an aversion to cats.
Omi Shichijo (七条 臣 Shichijō Omi?)
Voiced by: Tsuboi Tomohiro
Saionji's friend since childhood, he is a person who always smiles. He is extremely talented with computers and can also be extremely dangerous when he wants to. Currently, he helps Saionji at the Treasury/Accounting Department. Nakajima refers to him as a dog. He likes eating sweet foods such as chocolate.
Hideaki Nakajima (中嶋 英明 Nakajima Hideaki?)
Voiced by: Morikawa Toshiyuki
He is the vice president of the student council. He appears to be brisk and cool with most of the students, and can usually be found trying to hack the school's treasury records, much to the chagrin of Omi Shichijou. Although appearing to be sacastic and cruel to others, he does care for Niwa.
Yukihiko Naruse (成瀬 由紀彦 Naruse Yukihiko?)
Voiced by: Miki Shinichiro
He is the captain of the tennis club at school. He takes an immediate liking to Keita and calls him "Honey". A little oblivious at times, he is extremely passionate about Keita and is always trying to ask Keita out on dates.
Koji Shinomiya (篠宮 紘司 Shinomiya Kōji?)
Voiced by: Okiayu Ryotaro
He is the captain of the archery club. He is a very responsible, big-brother figure. He also holds the position of Dormitory Head. He has a little brother who has cardiac problems. He is very close with Takuto Iwai.
Takuto Iwai (岩井 卓人 Iwai Takuto?)
Voiced by: Nojima Hirofumi
He is the president of the art club and a genius artist. On the moody, introspective side, he is very soft-spoken and very humble about his skills as an artist. He is very close with Koji Shinomiya.
Shunsuke Taki (滝 俊介 Taki Shunsuke?)
Voiced by: Suzumura Kenichi, Drama voice by: Majima Junji
He is a superb cyclist who ranked the third in the National Tournament. Cuter and shorter than others of his age, he is characterised by his Kansai ben dialect. Taki also does freelance delivery work for most of the student body.
Satoshi Umino (海野 聡 Umino Satoshi?)
Voiced by: Tomoko Kawakami, Drama voice by: Amada Mahito
Although he is the oldest character, he is also the youngest-looking. He is extremely good at research but can barely take care of himself as he is quite absent-minded. He is both a teacher and researcher for the Bell Liberty. He is also very strong as a result of constantly carrying an overweight cat wherever he goes.
Kakeru Ozawa (小澤 翔 Ozawa Kakeru?) and Wataru Ozawa (小澤 渉 Ozawa Wataru?)
Voiced by: Takeuchi Ken and Mizushima Takahiro, respectively
Twins who tease Keita. Kakeru and Wataru are never seen apart. They are always getting into trouble and are very good at doubles tennis. They are also known as the "terrible twosome". Later in the anime, the twins seem to become fonder of Keita, but don't admit this till the last episode when the say that they might become his friends.
Jin Matsuoka (松岡 迅 Matsuoka Jin?)
Voiced by: Narita Ken
The school nurse of Bell Liberty, he is Kazuki's mentor and former tutor, and the two are very close. It is revealed in later episodes that he attended Bell Liberty himself with his friend, Hiroya Yoshizumi, to whom he was very close. He has a dark secret and will go to any means to fulfill his own agenda such as kidnapping to Keita, who contracted the same virus as Hiroya Yoshizumi, his friend.
Hiroya Yoshizumi (吉住 比呂哉 Yoshizumi Hiroya?)
Voiced by: Kirii Daisuke
Childhood friend of Matsuoka, they attended Bell Liberty together. He went into the medical field, like Matsuoka, after graduation, but contracted the "X7 virus" and is currently hospitalized in a coma. Not a major character.

Games[edit]

Specs[edit]

Version Platform Publisher Date Character Voices
PC Boy's Love Scramble Windows 95/98/2000/Me/XP,
Mac OS 8/9
SPRAY August 2, 2002 Not voiced
PS2 Boy's Love Scramble PlayStation 2 NEC Interchannel November 27, 2003 Fully Voiced
PS2 Type B PlayStation 2 NEC Interchannel July 22, 2004 Fully Voiced
PS2 Okawari PlayStation 2 Interchannel February 24, 2005 Fully Voiced
PSP Boy's Love Scramble PlayStation Portable Prototype November 26, 2009 Fully Voiced
PSP Okawari PlayStation Portable Prototype February 10, 2011 Fully Voiced

Boy's Love Scramble[edit]

In the original game, the player Keita Itō suddenly received an acceptance letter from the renowned Bell Liberty Academy (also known as BL Gakuen). Attracted by the prestige of the school, he decided to attend. However, on the day of his transfer, the bridge joining the school and the academy, which was located on a remote man-made island, suddenly raised and his bus fell. Luckily, no one was injured but the accident aroused the attention of both the student council's president Niwa Tetsuya as well as the head of the accounting department Saiyonji Kaoru. After explaining briefly the cause of the accident, they guided Keita to his classroom where he met his classmate Endou Kazuki, who kindly befriended Keita and showed him around the campus. On the school grounds, Keita met the rest of the important students in the game: Naruse Yukihiko, captain of the tennis club; Shinomiya Kouji, captain of the archery club; Iwai Takuto, captain of the art club; and Taki Shunsuke, a genius cyclist; the vice president of the student council, Nakajima Hideaki; the genius programmer, Shichijou Omi; as well as the child-looking teacher Umino Satoshi. The objective of the game is to solve the mysteries surrounding Keita's sudden transfer to BL Academy.

Okawari[edit]

A fan disc titled Gakuen Heaven Okawari! (学園へヴン おかわりっ! "Academy Heaven Second Helping!"?) was released for PlayStation 2. The story takes place three months after the first game. This time, Keita picked up a cursed ring that would take away his major ability – luck. The characters are the same as in the PC Game and the objective this time is to find the way to release Keita from the curse of the ring.

Double Scramble[edit]

Another game in the franchise, Gakuen Heaven 2 ~Double Scramble!~ (学園ヘヴン2 ~DOUBLE SCRAMBLE!~?) is in the works. It is planned for PC and PSP.

Anime[edit]

Summary[edit]

Keita Itō receives a letter of admission from Bell Liberty Academy, a prestigious all-boys school that only accepts the cream of the crop. Though he doubts his ability to succeed at such a school because he is a transfer student coming in the middle of the year, and he has no special ability that he can speak of, he accepts the admission. Keita is picked up by Niwa, the president of the student council, and from then on, he is warmly welcomed by everyone to BL Academy.

Keita's first actual friend is Endō Kazuki, who immediately takes Keita under his wing and takes care of him to the extent that Keita laughingly dubs him "grandmother." The two of them become a steadfast pair, but in the days that Kazuki is not around, Keita has no trouble finding other company among the other students.

Occasionally Keita has flashbacks to his childhood, where he is playing with a slightly older boy whom he calls "Kazu-nii." He can't remember much except that he and "Kazu-nii" were close at one point, but these memories seem irrelevant to his current life, so Keita dismisses them.

Meanwhile, Kazuki is involved in a power struggle with the Vice Chairman of the board. The Vice Chairman is distinctly annoyed that the former chairman chose to leave his position to Kazuki, and views Kazuki as a young and incompetent despot incapable of running BL Academy, much less Suzubishi Corporation, the business group that owns BL Academy and many scientific research and development companies. Indeed, Kazuki rejects many of the Vice Chairman's proposals and seemingly "abuses" his power by admitting a student of no particular skill—in this case, Itō Keita—to BL Academy. Keita unwittingly becomes involved in a potentially deadly power struggle between the Chairman and Vice Chairman. Kazuki stakes his position on the outcome of the school's annual "MVP Battle--" that is, if he and Keita do not manage to win the competition, he will resign his position as Chairman.

Episodes[edit]

No. Title Original air date
1 "An Out Of Season Transfer Student"
"Kisetsu Hazure no Tenkōsei" (季節はずれの転校生) 
April 1, 2006 (2006-04-01)
Ito Keita, an average boy, gets to attend Bell Liberty, an all-boys school where everyone has a special skill. 
2 "The Heaven We Reached"
"Tadoritsuita Hevun" (たどりついたヘヴン) 
April 8, 2006 (2006-04-08)
After an accident on the bridge, what happens to Keita and Niwa is revealed. 
3 "Circulating Letter, Wavering Feelings"
"Meguri Tegami, Yureru Omoi" (巡る手紙、揺れる想い) 
April 15, 2006 (2006-04-15)
A mysterious letter is entrusted to Keita and he has to show it to the club presidents. 
4 "Steam! A Stormy Welcoming Party"
"Yukemuri! Haran no Kangeikai" (湯煙!波乱の歓迎会) 
April 22, 2006 (2006-04-22)
It's Keita's first day of school, and after that it's the long awaited welcome party
5 "Heaven's Door"
"Hevunzu Doa" (ヘヴンズ・ドア) 
April 29, 2006 (2006-04-29)
Keita and the others go looking for tonosama, and end up at a door to heaven.[clarification needed] 
6 "Date Weather"
"Dēto Hiyori" (デート日和) 
May 6, 2006 (2006-05-06)
It's the first Sunday since Keita came to the academy. He goes on a date with Kazuki to the town near the school. 
7 "The Whereabouts of Anxiety"
"Fuan no Arika" (不安の在処(ありか)) 
May 13, 2006 (2006-05-13)
The vice chairman suggests that Keita drop out of school. And where is Kazuki? 
8 "The Night Before the MVP Battle"
"MVP Senzenya" (MVP戦前夜) 
May 20, 2006 (2006-05-20)
A series of challengers for the students where they have to be in pairs, is this the chairmans way of helping Keita? 
9 "The Steel Flower"
"Hagane no Hana" (鋼の花) 
May 27, 2006 (2006-05-27)
At last the MVP battle starts. What is the answer to all these codes? 
10 "The Key to Memories"
"Kioku no Kagi" (記憶の鍵) 
June 3, 2006 (2006-06-03)
The MVP battle is in its second round. Will Keita and Kazuki be able to work it out? 
11 "Revealed Truth"
"Akasareta Shinjitsu" (明かされた真実) 
June 10, 2006 (2006-06-10)
Keita and Kazuki won the MVP battle but Kazuki seems to be avoiding Keita. Will Kazuki tell him why? 
12 "A Flower that won't Bend to the Wind"
"Kaze ni Orenai Hana" (風に折れない花) 
June 17, 2006 (2006-06-17)
Dr. Jin takes Keita away so he could tell him a secret: the reason that he is at the academy. 
13 "Promise"
"Yakusoku" (約束) 
June 24, 2006 (2006-06-24)
Keita figures out his feelings for Kazuki and Kazuki tells Keita that he loves him. 

Staff[edit]

Drama CDs[edit]

5 drama CDs have been released. Aside from the first drama CD, the core cast remains the same for all other products in the franchise and is based on the casting in the PlayStation 2 games.

Full-length drama
  • Gakuen Heaven 1: Mirai wa Kimi no Mono
  • Gakuen Heaven 2: Muteki no Sannensei
  • Gakuen Heaven 2: Tsuyoki na Ninensei
  • Gakuen Heaven 2: Welcome to Heaven
  • Gakuen Heaven 3: Happy Paradise
Mini drama
  • Gakuen Heaven: Bitter Chocolate
  • Gakuen Heaven: Sweet Candy

Manga[edit]

The 5-volume manga series by You Higuri began in 2003. Each volume is an alternate-universe story following Keita's relationship with one of the possible romantic interests. The series was licensed in English by Tokyopop's yaoi imprint, BLU. Due to the closure of Tokyopop's North American publishing operations in 2011, only the first three volumes were published in English.

Web radio[edit]

Since March 2006, there has been a web radio show on Marine Entertainment's site to promote the anime. It is anchored by the cover voice for Keita Itō, Fukuyama Jun, and every 12 days, there are guests from the regular cast.

Reception[edit]

Melissa Harper of Anime News Network describes the manga as derivative, but enjoyable, with a romantic sex scene.[1] IGN reviewer A. E. Sparrow found the manga surprisingly well-paced and enjoyable, despite its roots in a dating sim.[2] Sandra Scholes, writing for Active Anime, found the manga's art to be very good.[3] Nadia Oxford, writing for Mania Entertainment, felt that the manga did not rise above other BL manga, its only distinction being its video game origins.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Harper, Melissa (January 18, 2007). "Gakuen Heaven". Anime News Network. Retrieved March 22, 2011.  Query Wayback Bibalex Wayback WebCite Wikiwix
  2. ^ Sparrow, A. E. (November 7, 2006). "Gakuen Heaven Review". IGN. Retrieved March 22, 2011.  Query Wayback Bibalex Wayback WebCite Wikiwix
  3. ^ Scholes, Sandra (December 14, 2007). "Gakuen Heaven Vol. 1". Active Anime. Retrieved March 22, 2011.  Query Wayback Bibalex Wayback WebCite Wikiwix
  4. ^ Oxford, Nadia (February 11, 2007). "Gakuen Heaven". Mania. Retrieved March 22, 2011.  Query Wayback Bibalex Wayback WebCite Wikiwix

Further reading[edit]

  • de Bats, Hadrien (2008). Brient, Hervé, ed. Homosexualité et manga : le yaoi. Manga: 10000 images (in French). Editions H. pp. 110–111. ISBN 978-2-9531781-0-4. 

External links[edit]