Cover of the first Crows volume
|Written by||Hiroshi Takahashi|
|Published by||Akita Shoten|
|Magazine||Monthly Shōnen Champion|
|Original run||1990 – 1998|
|Volumes||26 (+3 gaiden)|
|Original video animation|
|Directed by||Masamune Ochiai|
|Produced by||Hiroshi Iwakawa
|Music by||Keiichi Gotō|
|Released||January 28, 1994 - June 24, 1994|
|Runtime||45 minutes per episode|
Crows (Japanese: クローズ Hepburn: Kurōzu) is a Japanese high school delinquent manga series by Hiroshi Takahashi. It has the same setting and shares some characters with Takahashi's later manga QP and Worst. As of October 2007, it had sold more than 32 million copies worldwide.
The series was adapted into two episode OVA by Knack Productions which cover the first three volumes of the manga. It inspired three live-action films: Crows Zero in 2007, Crows Zero 2 in 2009 (both directed by Takashi Miike), and Crows Explode (directed by Toshiaki Toyoda) in 2014. The films are not direct adaptations but take place before the events of the manga. Several characters from the manga appear in the movies but not the main character Bōya.
A beat-em-up game for Sega Saturn titled Crows: The Battle Action was released in 1997.
The story begins when Harumichi Bōya transfers into the second year at Suzuran High School. Suzuran is notorious for its delinquent students who are nicknamed 'Crows' because of their dark uniforms and inauspicious nature. Quickly enough Bōya meets a group centered around Hiromi Kirishima who are trying to challenge the school boss Hideto Bandō. From there the story follows the exploits of Suzuran students and the teen-aged delinquents of various surrounding schools and gangs.
- Harumichi Bōya (坊屋 春道)
- Voiced by Hidenari Ugaki (OVA)
- The main protagonist. His loyalty to his friends and cocky nature often get him into conflict but he is otherwise lazy and laid-back and rejects any leadership role.
- Yasuo Yasuda (安田 泰男) Also known as "Yasu"
- Voiced by Kappei Yamaguchi (OVA)
- Yasu is small and scrawny which makes him an easy target for bullies. He becomes Bōya's closest friend and right-hand man.
- Futoshi Akutsu (亜久津 太) Also known as "Atchan"
- Voiced by Masashi Sugawara (OVA), played by Issei Okihara (live action)
- Akutsu is bullying Yasu when he first crosses paths with Bōya who quickly teaches him a lesson. Despite being somewhat cowardly he becomes loyal in his own way to Bōya.
- Hiromi Kirishima (桐島 ヒロミ)
- Voiced by Toshiyuki Morikawa (OVA), played by Shunsuke Daito (live action)
- Leader of the group that included Mako and Pon. After initially clashing with Bōya he allied with him to fight against Bandō. Also appears in the manga "QP".
- Makoto Sugihara (杉原 誠) Also known as "Mako"
- Voiced by Jūrōta Kosugi (OVA), played by Yū Koyanagi (live action)
- One of the strongest fighters at Suzuran. Managed to get a girlfriend much to Bōya's chagrin. Dropped out of school in his last year.
- Toshiaki Honjō (本城 俊明) Also known as "Pon"
- Voiced by Kōji Tsujitani (OVA), played by Ryō Hashizume (live action)
- A hotheaded boy usually wearing a face mask after breaking his two front teeth in a bike accident.
- Hideto Bandō (阪東 秀人)
- Voiced by Kazuki Yao (OVA), played by Dai Watanabe (live action)
- The ruthless boss of Suzuran when Bōya arrived and a member of the gang The Front of Armament. Also appears in the manga "QP".
- Megumi Hayashida (林田 恵) Also known as "Rindaman"
- Voiced by Akio Ōtsuka (OVA), played by Motoki Fukami (live action)
- Third year student and a surly loner who was the only one at Suzuran who could stand up to Bōya in fight. He has however no interest in gang politics. He is modelled after the character "Ricky Linderman" from the 1980 film My Bodyguard.
- Saburō Hanazawa (花澤 三郎) Also known as "Zetton"
- A former middle school junior of Bōya who entered Suzuran as a freshman when Bōya was beginning his third year. His nickname comes from a Kaiju in the Ultraman television series.
- Osamu Furukawa (古川 修) Also known as "Bulldog"
- Boss of Takiya Commerce High School and president of The Kurotaki Alliance. A charismatic leader who bonds with Bōya over their common inability to get anywhere with girls.
- Kenichi Maruyama (丸山 賢一) Also known as "Maruken"
- Played by Joey Iwanaga (Crows Explode live action)
- Kenichi Kadozumi (角住 賢一) Also known as "Kakuken"
- Played by Shuhei Nogae (Crows Explode live action)
- Maruken and Kakuken are the bosses of Kurosaki Industrial. Though they often argue about trivial things they are such close friends that they are sometimes collectively known as 'MaruKaku'. They are the first to join Bulldog and form The Kurotaki Alliance.
- Shinsuke Nakajima (中島 信助) Also known as "Ammo"
- A freshman at Kawada 2nd High who managed to become the new boss by defeating the previous boss Ishikawa. He is the only freshman to become an officer in The Kurotaki Alliance.
- Tatsuya Bitō (美藤 竜也)
- Played by Haruma Miura (live action)
- Ruled Hōsen Academy, Suzuran's rival school, along with his younger brother Hideyuki. They seek revenge for the death of their older brother. Later the brothers move to Tokyo.
- Jō Kanayama (金山 丈) Also known as "King Joe"
- A freshman who took control of Hōsen after the Bitōs left. Always ambitious and picking fights with the bosses of other schools. His nickname is the name of a robot in the Ultra Seven television series.
- Ryūshin Kunō (九能 龍信)
- Became the leader of The Front of Armament motorcycle gang after his brother Hideomi is defeated. Unlike his brother, Ryūshin is tough and honorable. Later moves to Tokyo to become a professional boxer.
- Genjirō Katsuragi (桂木 源次郎)
- Voiced by Masahiro Anzai (OVA)
- A graduate of Suzuran and a construction worker. Many Suzuran students see him as a big brother figure, in particular Rindaman.
- Gray, Jason. "Crows: Episode 0 flies to top of Japanese box office", ScreenDaily.com (Screen International), published October 29, 2007.
- "Takashi Miike Helming Live-Action Crows Prequel". Anime News Network. April 19, 2007. Retrieved January 24, 2010.
- Elley, Derek (October 8, 2007). "Crows: Episode 0". Variety. Archived from the original on February 19, 2008.
- Jensen, Erik (July 21, 2009). "Crows x Worst: An Introduction". Anime News Network. Retrieved June 9, 2013.
- "Hiroshi Takahashi's Crows Manga Inspires 3rd Live-Action Film". Anime News Network. June 4, 2013. Retrieved June 9, 2013.
- "Media Create Sales: 10/24/16 – 10/30/16". gematsu. Retrieved 19 March 2018.
- Crows (manga) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia
- Kōkō Butō Den Crows (anime) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia
- ANN feature
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