Hayate the Combat Butler
|Hayate the Combat Butler|
Cover of the first Hayate the Combat Butler volume 1 in English featuring Hayate (left) and Nagi (right).
(Hayate no Gotoku!)
|Genre||Action, Harem, Parody, Romantic comedy|
|Written by||Kenjiro Hata|
|Magazine||Weekly Shōnen Sunday|
|Original run||October 2004 – ongoing|
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Keiichiro Kawaguchi|
|Original run||April 1, 2007 – March 30, 2008|
|Written by||Toshihiko Tsukiji|
|Illustrated by||Kenjiro Hata|
|Original run||May 24, 2007 – March 18, 2008|
|Original video animation|
|Directed by||Yoshiaki Iwasaki|
|Released||March 6, 2009|
|Anime television series|
|Hayate the Combat Butler!!|
|Directed by||Yoshiaki Iwasaki|
|Original run||April 3, 2009 – September 18, 2009|
|Anime television series|
|Hayate the Combat Butler: Can't Take My Eyes Off You|
|Directed by||Masashi Kudo|
|Original run||October 4, 2012 – December 20, 2012|
|Anime television series|
|Hayate the Combat Butler: Cuties|
|Directed by||Masashi Kudo|
|Original run||April 8, 2013 – ongoing|
Hayate the Combat Butler (ハヤテのごとく! Hayate no Gotoku! ) is a Japanese manga series, written and illustrated by Kenjiro Hata, about a boy who starts a new job as a butler and the events he experiences with his employer. Shogakukan have released 34 volumes in Japan. The English edition of the series has been licensed by Viz Media for distribution in North America. The style of the manga has a comedic gag with a slight harem feel and constantly breaks the fourth wall. The series includes numerous references to other anime, manga, video games, and popular culture.
A 52-episode anime adaptation of the manga by SynergySP aired between April 2007 and March 2008 on TV Tokyo. A second, 25-episode anime season by J.C.Staff aired between April and September 2009. Bandai Entertainment licensed the first anime series in 2008, but the series went out of print in 2012. An anime film adaption produced by Manglobe was released in August 2011. A third, 12-episode anime television series by Manglobe, based mostly on an original story not seen in the manga aired between October and December 2012. A fourth anime season began airing in April 2013.
Hayate Ayasaki is an unlucky teenager who has worked since childhood to make ends meet due to his parents' irresponsible behavior. One day on Christmas Eve, he finds out that his parents were planning to sell his organs to the Yakuza to make money, leaving behind a massive gambling debt on his shoulders of ¥156,804,000. While running away from the debt collectors he ends up meeting Nagi Sanzenin, a young girl who is the sole heir of the wealthy Sanzenin estate, and due to a misunderstanding, Nagi ends up falling in love with Hayate. After he rescues Nagi from some kidnappers, she hires Hayate as her new butler.
Aside from performing his ordinary duties as a butler, Hayate must fight to protect Nagi from harm, a difficult task since her life is always in danger because she is the target of other individuals coveting her family's fortune, and sometimes deal with some extravagant requests from her, oblivious to Nagi's true feelings for him. In the later story, Hayate has to deal with the feelings of several other girls, Ayumu Nishizawa; his former classmate who harbors a crush on him, and Hinagiku Katsura; the student council president of Hakuō Academy who ends up growing attached to him. Hayate had a romantic relationship with a childhood friend, Athena Tennousu, who is chairwoman of the board of Hakuō Academy.
Due to a series of events involving Hayate, Nagi, and Athena during Golden Week, Nagi ends up forfeiting her inheritance. With the last of her savings, Nagi moves with Hayate and her maid Maria to an old apartment building called "Violet Mansion" owned by her late mother, Yukariko, and rents its extra rooms for income: having Chiharu Harukaze; the secretary of Hakuō Academy, Hinagiku, Athena (in child-form), Kayura Tsurugino; an "elite otaku", Ruka Suirenji; a "singing idol" who develops feelings for Hayate, and Ayumu, as its tenants.
The Hayate the Combat Butler manga was first serialized in the Japanese shōnen manga magazine Shōnen Sunday in May 2004. The manga is written and illustrated by Kenjiro Hata. Viz Media announced they acquired the rights to publish the manga in North America and released the first volume on November 14, 2006. The most recent English release is volume 18, on September 13, 2011. The English translations are done by Yuki Yoshioka and Cindy H. Yamauchi; English adaptation is done by Mark Giambruno. The latest Japanese release is volume 34, on October 18, 2012.
The Hayate the Combat Butler 52-episode anime aired on TV Tokyo in Japan between April 1, 2007 and March 30, 2008, produced by animation studio SynergySP and with music by Kōtarō Nakagawa. The series also aired on the CS television network Animax starting on October 25, 2007, where it received its satellite television premiere, and was shown uncensored. The series was licensed in North America by Bandai Entertainment in 2008, but in February 2012, the company stopped releasing titles beyond February 7, and in April of the same year, the rights to the series were dropped, making the releases out of print.
An original video animation (OVA) episode was released on March 6, 2009 in DVD and Blu-ray formats. A second anime season of Hayate the Combat Butler, titled Hayate the Combat Butler!! (an additional exclamation mark) aired 25 episodes between April 4 and September 18, 2009, produced by animation studio J.C.Staff. Unlike the first season, the second season retcons the events of the first season by claiming at the onset that a month has pass since Hayate became Nagi's butler. Furthermore, the second season is more faithful to the manga than the first season. On July 21, 2010, Animax Asia began airing the second season, including the OVA, with English dubbing done again by Red Angel Media along with Cantonese and Mandarin dub.
An anime film adaptation, produced by Manglobe and directed by Hideto Komori titled Hayate the Combat Butler! Heaven Is a Place on Earth, was released in Japanese theaters on August 27, 2011. A third anime television series, titled Hayate the Combat Butler: Can't Take My Eyes Off You and produced by Manglobe, aired 12 episodes between October 4 and December 20, 2012. Instead of being a sequel to the 2009 anime series, Can't Take My Eyes Off You features a new story written in part by the original creator Kenjiro Hata and is mostly based on his original ideas that never made it to the manga. Despite that, the third season takes place chronologically nine months after the beginning of the first, and six months after the second. A fourth anime television series, titled Hayate the Combat Butler: Cuties, began airing in April 2013.
Light novels 
A light novel based on the series, written by Toshihiko Tsukiji and illustrated by Kenjiro Hata, was released on May 24, 2007, published by Shogakukan under their GAGAGA Bunko label. The novel includes a doppelgänger and barrier that Maria encounters, Isumi Saginomiya's magic that happens in front of Nagi's eyes, and the corruption of the building of the Film Analysing Club (You Tobe) that Izumi Segawa, Miki Hanabishi, and Risa Asakaze were members of.
A second light novel entitled Nagi is the Familiar!? Let it ★ World Conquest (ナギが使い魔!?やっとけ★世界征服 Nagi ga Tsukaima!? Yattoke Sekai Seifuku ) was released on March 18, 2008. The title is the combination of The Familiar of Zero and the phrase which is similar to Lucky Star's first opening theme, "Take It! Sailor Uniform" (もってけ!セーラーふく Motteke! Sērāfuku ). The cover of this novel features Nagi wearing Louise's costume. Insert images are drawn by Kenjiro Hata and Eiji Usatsuka, the illustrator of The Familiar of Zero light novels.
Video games 
A video game by Konami for the Nintendo DS (NDS) titled Hayate no Gotoku! Boku ga Romeo de Romeo ga Boku de (ハヤテのごとく!ボクがロミオでロミオがボクで Hayate the Combat Butler! I am Romeo and Romeo is Me ) was released in Japan on August 23, 2007 with an A rating by CERO. A limited edition of the game was released on the same day which included a Hakuō Academy student notebook and a drama CD. The gameplay has the player assuming the role of Hayate Ayasaki and follows a branching plot line which offers pre-determined scenarios with courses of interaction.
A second NDS video game was released in two versions on March 14, 2008 titled Hayate no Gotoku! Ojō-sama Produce Daisakusen Bokuiro ni Somare! (ハヤテのごとく!お嬢さまプロデュース大作戦 ボク色にそまれっ!) with a B rating by CERO, but the versions differ between their story settings. One game is set at the Sanzen'in's mansion, and the other one is set at Nagi's school. The gameplay has the player again assuming the role of Hayate Ayasaki and focuses on Nagi as the main character who the player trains; she may also learn some attacks or tricks to make an appeal at contests. Players are able to control where characters go and talk to gather information in continuing the story. Players may easily trade data with other players using wireless connections (however, the game is not Wi-Fi compatible). Similar to the 2007 game, there are many Konami parodies included. For both the 2007 and 2008 games, there are a couple of hidden stories or voices that can be made available by passwords. A third video game titled Hayate no Gotoko!! Nightmare Paradise (ハヤテのごとく!! ナイトメアパラダイス) was released on March 26, 2009 for the PlayStation Portable with a B rating by CERO.
Live-action TV series 
Music and audio CDs 
The first anime series has two opening themes and four ending themes. The first opening theme is "Hayate no Gotoku!" (ハヤテのごとく!) by Kotoko released on May 23, 2007 and the second opening theme is "Shichiten Hakki Shijōshugi!" by Kotoko released on October 17, 2007. The ending themes are: "Proof" by Mell released on May 30, 2007, "Get my way!" by Mami Kawada released on August 8, 2007, "Chasse" by Kaori Utatsuki released on November 21, 2007, and "Ko no Me Kaze" (木の芽風) by Iku released on March 19, 2008. The second anime series has two opening themes and two ending themes. The first opening theme is "Wonder Wind" by Elisa and the second opening theme is "Daily-daily Dream" by Kotoko. The first ending theme is "Honjitsu, Mankai Watashi Iro!" by Shizuka Itō (with Eri Nakao, Sayuri Yahagi and Masumi Asano) and the second ending theme is "Karakoi: Dakara Shōjo wa Koi o Suru" by Rie Kugimiya and Ryoko Shiraishi. The opening theme of the third anime series is "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" by Eyelis, and the ending theme is "Koi no Wana" (恋の罠 Love Trap ) by Haruka Yamazaki. The opening song for the fourth anime series is performed by Shizuka Itō.
There are twelve character song albums sung by the main characters from the anime adaptation. The first two were released on May 25, 2007 and feature songs sung by Ryōko Shiraishi as Hayate Ayasaki and Rie Tanaka as Maria. The last two, released on July 25, 2007, feature songs sung by Rie Kugimiya as Nagi Sanzen'in and Shizuka Itō as Hinagiku Katsura. Miyu Matsuki as Isumi Saginomiya and Kana Ueda as Sakuya Aizawa was released on September 21, 2007. Marina Inoue and Saki Nakajima as Wataru Tachibana and Saki Kijima, as well as Mikako Takahashi as Ayumu Nishizawa was released on November 21, 2007. Hitomi Nabatame as Yukiji Katsura and Sayuri Yahagi, Eri Nakao, Masumi Asano as Izumi, Miki, and Risa was released on January 25, 2008. Two duet character albums starring Hermione Ayasaki and Nagi, and Maria and Hinagiku were released on March 21, 2008.
The original soundtrack was released on June 22, 2007 and a drama CD based on the anime adaptation was released on August 22, 2007. On September 21, 2007, volume one of a two-CD radio drama called Radio the Combat Butler was released.
Additional merchandise 
Additional notable merchandises include many school related goods which were released near the start of the anime series in March and April 2007. Many other goods such as clocks, mugs, and posters were released a few months after. In 2008, a 1/8 scale (approx. 21 cm or 8.25") figurine series (entitled, "Hayate no Gotoku! Collection Figures") created by Jun Planning was released. Maria was released in March. Hinagiku figurine with Masamune in her hand was released on June 19. Nagi figurine with video game controller was released in July. Also, Kotobukiya released a series of 1/6 scale swimsuit figurines. Hinagiku was released in January 2009; Nagi in April 2009, and Ayumu in May 2009. Shogakukan released an art book titled Hayate the Combat Butler Official Box on November 16, 2007.
Over ten million copies of the manga and other Hayate-related books have been sold in Japan as of January 2009. Carlo Santos of Mania.com gave Volume 14 of the manga a C+, citing Hata's overextension of a complex work with multiple simultaneous plotlines and constant scene changes. He does note that Sakuya's birthday party as an example of the work's strong point. Chris Beveridge of Mania.com gave part six of the anime an overall B rating. Although, in his opinion, the storyline and nature of the anime has not changed much, he was suddenly captivated. Beveridege sums up these feelings for the final episodes by noting that they "had a certain flavor and flow to them that left me pretty happy, which is a surprise after five volumes that left me feeling ambivalent at best."
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- Santos, Carlo (16 May 2010). "Sebastian the Combat Butler". Right Turn Only!!. Mania. Retrieved 15 September 2010.
- Beveridge, Chris (3 August 2010). "Hayate the Combat Butler Part 6". Mania. Retrieved 15 September 2010.
- Manga official website (Japanese)
- Anime official website (Japanese)
- TV Tokyo's website for the anime (Japanese)
- Animax's website for the anime (Japanese)
- First game's official website (Japanese)
- Second game's official website (Japanese)
- Hayate the Combat Butler (manga) at Anime News Network's Encyclopedia