||This article describes a work or element of fiction in a primarily in-universe style. (October 2013)|
Cover of the first volume of the manga, published by Kodansha
(Daa! Daa! Daa!)
|Genre||Romantic comedy, Science fiction|
|Written by||Mika Kawamura|
|Original run||February 1998 – March 2002|
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Hiroaki Sakurai|
|Original run||March 28, 2000 – February 26, 2002|
|Shin Daa! Daa! Daa!|
|Written by||Mika Kawamura|
|Original run||April 2, 2002 – December 28, 2002|
UFO Baby (だぁ!だぁ!だぁ! Dā! Dā! Dā!?) is a shōjo comedy manga by Mika Kawamura, serialized by Kodansha in Nakayoshi from February 1998 to March 2002 and collected in nine bound volumes. The series was adapted as a 78-episode anime television series, produced by NHK and animated by J.C.Staff, which was broadcast between March 2000 and February 2002 on NHK's BS2 broadcast satellite network. The series was one of the top-rated anime series during its initial broadcast.
UFO Baby is about two junior high school students, Miyu and Kanata, who find (and take care of) an abandoned alien baby without anyone discovering they are living together. The anime concluded before the manga did, resulting in different endings for each series. Kawamura later wrote a sequel to the manga, Shin Daa! Daa! Daa! (新☆だぁ!だぁ!だぁ!?).
Miyu Kouzuki is an 8th-grade student whose parents leave for the United States to work for NASA and arrange for her to stay with their long-time family friend, Hōsho Saionji (a monk who lives in an old temple atop a hill). However, the monk leaves soon after for India on a year-long voyage, leaving Miyu to stay in the same house with his son, Kanata.
Suddenly a UFO lands – transporting an alien baby, Ruu, and his cat-like "sitter pet", Wannya. They arrive after being separated from their home planet, Otto, when it falls into an interplanetary worm hole (a time warp which can transport objects across several regions, planets and time planes). They cannot return to their home planet because it is too difficult to reach; Wannyā asks Kanata and Miyu to allow them to stay in their house, and they agree. Miyu and Kanata learn from Wannyā that people from Planet Otto look identical to human beings, and that Wannyā can also transform into human beings, animals and objects.
Miyu and Kanata feel deep love for Baby Ruu, who also cares for them – thinking of them as his parents due to their similar looks – and they go to great lengths to help and protect him and Wannya. As the story progresses the group are often involved in comedic and funny situations, but their sense of family deepens. The story ends with a rescue team from outer space coming to Earth and returning Ruu and Wannyā to Otto safely. Miyu goes to boarding school alone. However, years later Miyu and Kanata reunite, marry and have a daughter named Miu; they also reunite with Wannya and Ruu.
In Shin Daa! Daa! Daa!, set many years later, Ruu meets a confused earthling girl called Miu that has arrived through a wormhole. Miu desperately wants to go home and he agrees. Unbeknownst to him, Miu is the daughter of exactly the same people who took excellent care of him during his stay on Earth, Miyu Kōzuki and Kanata Saionji. They meet Ran, Ruu's best friend, a robot named Ann and Mininyā, Wannyā's son.
- Miyu Kozuki (光月 未夢 Kōzuki Miyu)?, (Voiced by Kaori Nazuka)
- The main female character, a blonde, pretty girl. Her parents leave for the United States to work for NASA at the beginning of the series, arranging for her to stay with their long-time family friend, Hosho Saionji, a monk who lives at and runs an old temple on a hill. Hosho leaves soon after to spend a year in India, leaving Miyu and Hosho's son Kanata alone together. Miyu often fights with Kanata at the beginning of the series, but finds out from her mother that they were childhood friends and begins to like him more and more, coming to love Kanata as the story progresses. At first Miyu denies her feelings for him, but soon she begins to realize that she indeed likes him. In the manga, it is revealed that Miyu and Kanata have kissed twice. In volume 9 (chapter 46, page 34), Miyu wanted to tell Kanata her true feelings towards him but could not. She also had a crush on Mizuki Yamamura (Mikan's younger brother); in one episode, when she and Kanata help Mikan in her manga, there was a character whom Miyu admired. Saying that he is her ideal, she went to Mikan's apartment and saw Mizuki. In the manga, Hanakomachi Kurita (Momoka's older brother) has a crush on Miyu, which makes her uneasy.
- She feels a deep affection for Ruu, who feels like she is his mother due to their similar looks. Miyu is shown as an ordinary girl with a kind, generous, motherly personality. She is cheerful, with a ready smile, but also has a soft heart that is easily touched. In the episode "Nozomu-kun Goes to the Dream World", Miyu's deepest dream is to be together with her family (including Kanata's family – Mr. Hoshou and Mrs. Hitomi – Ruu's family and Wannyā. She seems very caring towards Christine when, in the episode "The Hike of Fear", she told Wannyā not to hurt Christine. Chapter 41 reveals that Miyu is younger than Kanata. In the manga ending (which differs from the above-mentioned anime) Miyu did not change schools. Although they care for each other, Miyu and Kanata frequently argue, but in Episode 55, they admit their feelings for each other. Years later, she marries Kanata and they live at the temple. Their daughter, Miu, meets Ruu when she is 12 years old; this story is continued in Shin Daa Daa Daa.
Miyu's name is from Mi (Miki) and Yu (Yume), "dream"
- Kanata Saionji (西遠寺 彷徨 Saionji Kanata)?, (Voiced by Yuko Sanpei)
- The main male character in the story, who is among the most popular boys in his school – especially with the girls, due to his good looks and attitude. Not only does he excel in his studies, he is also good at sports. Shortly after Miyu arrives at his home, Kanata's father declares that he wishes to leave on a year-long trip to India to try to find enlightenment and leaves Kanata and Miyu living in the same house. His best friend is Santa Kurosu. Miyu begins attending Kanata's school; they have difficulty keeping their secret about living together, and pretend they are cousins. Kanata learns from Miyu's mother that they were childhood friends; he begins to like Miyu more and more, coming to love her as the story progresses (but he still teases her to mask it). His mother (Hitome) was a good friend of Miyu's mother (Miki Kazouki), and died when he was three years old. Kanata does not want to admit his true feelings for others, especially Miyu. He cares for his loved ones – his family, friends, Wannyā, Ruu and Miyu – very much. Kanata reveals his true feelings for Miyu in the 55th episode of the series.
- Kanata's favorite food is pumpkin in all its varieties, from squashed to chips. In "The Blackout Halloween", it is revealed that Kanata liked pumpkin since he was a baby, when his mother fed it to him for the first time. Ruu calls Kanata "Papa", since he looks similar to his real father. Kanata is an easy-going person who does not like to talk very much (unlike Miyu). Although he seems quiet and a bit cold, Kanata is a loving, caring person. He has feelings for Miyu, but often makes a joke of it or sticks out his tongue to hide them. Kanata loved his mother very much, even though he had only known her for a short time. In chapter 41 of the manga, when Miyu and the others travel back in time Kanata returns to when his mother was still alive. Miyu (who was wearing a yukata given her by Kanata) meets Kanata's mother; they are both wearing the same yukata. In the manga, after Ruu and Wannyā return to their home planet Kanata confesses his love to Miyu and kisses her. Years later, he assumes his father's role as the temple's resident priest and marries Miyu. Their daughter, Miu, meets Ruu when she is 12 years old; this story is continued in Shin Daa Daa Daa.
- Ruu (ルゥ Rū)?, (Voiced by Mika Kanai) also known as Lou
- Ruu is an alien baby from Planet Otto, who can levitate and perform telekinesis on objects. He develops a deep love for Miyu and Kanata, thinking of them as his parents, and often helping them. He uses his abilities at inappropriate times, causing great trouble for Miyu and Kanata. Although he is a baby, he understands everyone. Ruu does not like when Miyu and Kanata fight, as he demonstrates in the 25th episode "With Ruu-kun at The Department Store". In that, Ruu makes peace between his two "earth" parents. He is also revealed as an ordinary baby, who cries and laughs as "earth" babies do. To keep others from learning the truth about Ruu's identity, he is referred to as Miyu's little brother (although Ruu denies that, and insists on calling Miyu "Mama". Ruu believes Miyu and Kanata are his real parents, and does not learn the truth until the end of the series).
- Miu Saionji (Saionji Miu)
- Miu Saionji is Kanata and Miyu's daughter. She is in 6th grade and is currently 12 years old. She arrives at the planet Otto through a wormhole. Miu develops her feelings for Ruu through the series of the manga.
- Wannya (ワンニャー Wannyā)?, (Voiced by Chiemi Chiba)
- Wannyā (also known as Baumiao, a play on "Bow-meow") is a cat-like alien "sitter pet" from Otto, entrusted to take care of Ruu. He can transform into a human being (a blond man whom Mikan once liked, or a dark-red-haired woman), an animal or an object. He develops a passion for mitarashi dango (dumplings), and writes about the day's events in his computerized "sitter pet" diary. Wannyā does all the cooking and cleaning in the house. He addresses Ruu as "Ruu-chama" (most likely a combination of sama, which shows respect and chan, used as a term of endearment to children).
- Christine Hanakomachi (花小町 クリスティーヌ Hanakomachi Kurisutīnu)?, (Voiced by Haruna Ikezawa)
- Nicknamed "Chris", Christine is Miyu and Kanata's pink-haired, half-French (through her mother) and wealthy classmate. She is so infatuated with Kanata that she becomes jealous when she sees him with Miyu or any other girl. She expresses her rage by demonstrating superhuman strength in picking up large objects (such as trees and desks) to throw. When she snaps out of one of her "episodes", she apologizes and fixes what she has damaged in her rampage with tools (construction equipment, for example) kept in her magic satchel. Her jealousy is usually meant to be comical, but is sometimes used in serious situations. Chris appears oblivious to her supernatural powers; she is shy and friendly. Coming from a rich family, among her possessions are a winter lodge and a snowy mountain. She learns of Ruu's secret early in the manga but promises not to tell, saying that she was ridiculed for her red hair and different appearance when she was little. However, in the anime she does not discover his secret until the end of the series. Christine's parents are never seen in the anime; her only visible guardian is the butler Mr Shikada ("Mr. Deerfield" in the English translation), who is dressed in a deer costume. He has been doing this for Chris since her childhood to make her happy, because of her love for deer. Her favorite pastimes include skiing and horseback riding.
- Momoka Hanakomachi (花小町 ももか Hanakomachi Momoka)?, (Voiced by Chinami Nishimura)
- Christine's 3-year-old cousin. Momoka often rides her tricycle, and she is in love with Ruu, declaring that he is her boyfriend, going as far as to saying that she wants to get married to him. Momoka has a grudge against Miyu and other older girls; she often calls them obā-chan, or "Madam" – a title used for an elderly woman or a grandmother, which infuriates Miyu. She appears to like Kanata very much, however, admitting he is cute and calling him "Kanata onii-chan". Momoka learns Miyu and Kanata's secret about aliens in their house in the episode "Momoka's Passport", when she saw Ruu fly up to recapture a balloon. From Episodes 4 to 30, she insists that men and women, no matter what their ages are, do not cry, but in Episode 31, it may be revealed that she was lying about that, saying that it's all right to cry, and viewers can tell by the look on her face when she cried with Ruu and Wannya, who are dressed as Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and Santa Claus, respectively, in the show's first Christmas episode.
- Aya Konishi (小西 綾 Konishi Aya)?, (Voiced by Atsuko Enomoto)
- Aya is Miyu and Kanata's classmate, who is a very good friend of Miyu; they often go shopping with Nanami. She has greenish hair, with two braids. She likes school plays (which she often directs). Much to Miyu and Kanata's displeasure, some of Aya's plays or projects are similar to their current life; they get annoyed when she casts Miyu and Kanata in lead roles. Things become much worse when Aya develops an interest to Ruu, and also features him in her plays. Occasionally, Aya will start speaking French when she gets excited. Sometimes when she gets an idea for a new play, an orange will appear on her head (similar to Mikan's); she says she is in "Mikan mode" when this happens.
- Nanami Tenchi (天地 ななみ Tenchi Nanami)?, (Voiced by Asako Shirakura)
- Nanami is Miyu and Kanata's classmate. She has short brown hair, and is a very good friend of Miyu; she often goes shopping with her and Aya. Nanami is usually very playful and energetic, but can sometimes get very tired after a hard task. She also has a huge appetite, and likes old-school-style clothes.
- Santa Kurosu (黒須 三太 Kurosu Santa)?, (Voiced by Hikaru Tokita)
- Santa is Kanata's best friend, who is weird and often comes up with strange ideas. He loves old recordings. Miyu once thought that Santa had fallen in love with a girl, but later finds out that it was the girl's camera he admired. He first met Kanata through a TV show named Cactus Man (named for the main character), which had low ratings and was cancelled early. Kanata liked the show, though, because he felt the hero had more courage than other heroes. One day, while wearing a Cactus Man costume, he meets Santa (who is wearing an identical costume). Soon afterwards they place their costumes in a time capsule, opening it ten years later (around the time Miyu and Kanata are with Ruu and Wannyā). He has a pen pal, with whom he becomes friends; before she leaves for Germany, the two meet each other in person.
Santa's name is a play on the Japanese pronunciation of "Santa Claus", though this has no direct relation to his character. At the end of the manga he was dating a celebrity, Kyouko.
- Nozomu Hikarigaoka (光ヶ丘 望 Hikarigaoka Nozomu?, (Voiced by Taisuke Yamamoto)
- In his eyes, he is Kanata's rival. Nozomu is a classmate of Miyu and Kanata, who has blond hair. He has a pet bird named Okame, who helps him give out roses to the girls. He first appears at the start of the second season. Because he is continuously stalking Miyu, she begins to think he is an alien; she finds out later that Nozomu is interested in Kanata instead. At the end of the manga Nozomu becomes a magician, with Okame his assistant.
There are some differences in Nozomu's character between the manga and anime. In the manga, he was far more selfish and while he flirted with every girl like he did in the anime, none of them knew he flirted with everyone as they each believed he only flirted with one of them while in the anime he is more universal and open with his flirting as he flirts with every girl he sees, though the girls don't mind (possibly since he is not flirting with each one behind their backs). Also, during the beauty pageant which he competed in with Kanata to see who was the best (Kanata didn't really care but Nozomu did) while taking pictures of Kanata to enter into the competition, in the anime he saw Kanata push Mikan and thought he was attacking her and sent it in to show everyone what a bad person he seemed to be. However, upon earning it was a misunderstanding, he bowed his head and apologized to Kanata, demonstrating he truly did not mean harm and wanted a fair competition. In contrast, the Nozomu in the manga is far more devious and low as he purposely altered the picture to make Kanata look bad, showing he didn't mind cheating to win.
- Mikan Yamamura (山村 みかん Yamamura Mikan)?, (Voiced by Mika Kanai)
- A budding manga artist, Mikan often has a tangerine on her head (as do her relatives, including her pet Scottish fold cat) and her eyes are almost always shut. She is a very good friend of Kanata and Miyu, both of whom she helps; in turn, they help her with her manga. She has a handsome younger brother, Mizuki Yamamura, an inspiration for one of the characters in her manga who helps her with it. Mikan is often in a panic because of deadlines; she visits Kanata for consolation, and nearly finds out Miyu and Kanata's secret several times. Mizuki points out that Mikan never gave up on her dream on becoming a manga artist, despite her father's wish for her to become a baker. So far, Mikan has been successful in her chosen career. Although Mikan is often drawn comically and appears plain and stressed, she is pretty when wearing makeup and relaxed.
An avatar of the manga's author, Mika Kawamura, her name Mikan means "tangerine" and Yama "mountain".
- Miki Kozuki (光月 未来 Kōzuki Miki)?, (Voiced by Yuko Minaguchi)
- Miki is Miyu's astronaut mother, who is obsessed with anything connected with outer space. She is hired by NASA (with her husband, Yu) at the beginning of the story, and must leave for the United States. She arranges for her daughter, Miyu, to live with the Saionjis. Her two childhood dreams were to have a beautiful daughter and to become an astronaut, both of which came true. She was friends with Kanata's mother, Hitomi since they were teenagers.
- Yuu Kozuki (光月 優 Kōzuki Yū)?, (Voiced by Takuma Suzuki)
- Yū is Miyu's astrophysicist father; he helps his wife with her work and is also hired by NASA. He became interested in astrophysics to further his wife's dream of becoming an astronaut and traveling in space. In episode 40, we learn that Yu met Miki when they were in college and he asked her to join the astronomy club.
- Housho Saionji (西遠寺 宝晶 Saionji Hōshō)?, (Voiced by - Kenichi Ogata)
- Kanata's father is a monk, and the patron of the Saionji household. He seems very irresponsible, embarking on a pilgrimage to India soon after Miyu arrives at the Saionji household. In episode 40, it is explained that he met his wife Hitomi when she visited the temple and asked him to take a picture of her and her friends. The two began a long-distance relationship, until Hitomi graduated from high school and they were reunited. Devastated by her death when Kanata was an infant, he bursts into tears whenever she is brought up. This makes it difficult for Kanata to discuss her with his father, so he knows little of her.
- Hitomi Saionji (西遠寺 瞳 Saionji Hitomi)?, (Voiced by Sakiko Tamagawa)
- Kanata's late mother, who was a very good friend of Miyu's mother, Miki. She died when Kanata was still a child, and was buried on the Saionji Temple grounds. She seems to have been a kind and beautiful person. When they were in college, it was she who encouraged Miki to pursue her dream of becoming an astronaut when the latter doubted herself.
- Miss Mizuno (水野先生 Mizuno-sensei)?, (Voiced by Katsuya Endō)
- Miyu and Kanata's class teacher; she is talented at numerous skills, from cooking to ninja-training. She also a friend of Mikan.
- Seiya Yaboshi (夜星 星矢 Yaboshi Seiya)?, (Voiced by Asami Sanada)
- Seiya is a blond alien who visits Earth and takes a liking to Miyu, often shapeshifting as Kanata to get close to her. His kind can read minds through a touch of the hand. He first appears in Episode 12; after touching Miyu's hand, he read her mind and wanted to take Ruu to planet Sharaku (his home planet) to appear on a television programme. People from planet Otto were rare, but after reading Miyu's hand he understood that Ruu was precious to her and Kanata, ceasing his pursuit of Ruu. Seiya has a sister, Rui, who saved him from being sucked into a wormhole, and has had a sheltered childhood.
His surname, Yaboshi, means "night star".
- Rui Yaboshi (夜星 流 Yaboshi Rui)?, (Voiced by Junko Noda)
- Rui is Seiya's older sister, who greatly cares for him. Seiya appears annoyed with her but truly cares for her, as seen Episode 28. She works at the Space Police Force cafeteria.
- Teru Moroboshi (諸星 輝 Teru Moroboshi)?, (Voiced by Ryotaro Okiayu)
- Rui's lover, who is Space Police Force's Space Detective. He is an honest hot-blooded man. He appearance is an homage to the tokusatsu genre.
- The Principal (校長 Kōchō)?, (Voiced by Naoki Bandō)
- The eccentric principal of Miyu and Kanata's school, who is extremely fond of monkeys, bananas and video games (especially monkey-based ones). His fascination with the creatures stemms from his friendship with his pet monkey, Monkichi (モン吉?) Voice by: Orine Fukushima, from whom he was separated in childhood when Monkichi was sucked into a wormhole. They are later reunited, however, thanks to the help of Miyu, Kanata, Ruu and Wannyā. Monkey dolls and figures adorn his office, where he is often found playing video games; he sometimes organizes school programs with monkey-based themes.
- Pepo (ペポ Pepo?, (Voiced by Ai Tokunaga)
- A rabbit-like alien who becomes Ruu's pet after an accident, where he fell out of a truck from outer space later in the series. He is a considerable glutton. In the manga he is all white, and debuts late in volume seven.
- Durian (ドリアン Dorian?, (Voiced by Hisayo Mochizuki)
- Waruwaru Dan's eldest sister, woman who always put on goggles. Because they are poor, Waruwaru Dan are going to kidnap Ruu to get the TV show prize money. However, they will always fail. She makes various strange machine. She was scientist who studied a space-time distortion in Planet Sharaku.
- Kiwi (キウイ Kiui?, (Voiced by Yukana)
- Waruwaru Dan's second sisters, girl who wears Monpe (Japanese work clothes for female). She and Guava is selling various goods. however they don't sell at all.
- Guava (グアバ Guaba?, (Voiced by Miki Nagasawa)
- Waruwaru Dan's third sister, girl who always wears costume. She is in love with Hikarigaoka.
- Akira Kijyo (喜上 アキラ Kijyō Akira?, (Voiced by Kotono Mitsuishi)
- Akira is Kanata's childhood friend, who appears in episodes 33 and 34. She has long, black hair, and violet eyes. Kanata made a promise to her that they would watch the sunset together at Fantasy Park, which came true after she visited him when her father was on a business trip. Akira has a crush on Kanata, demonstrated by their conversation on the ferris wheel; she said to herself, "There is no one I like in America" when Kanata told her the sunsets must be beautiful in America. In the manga, Kijyou wants to feel what Miyu feels for Kanata by giving Kanata a fake kiss.
- Kurita Hanakomachi (花小町 栗太 Hanakomachi Kurita?)
- A manga-only character, who appears in chapter 15. Kurita is Momoka's older brother, who falls in love with Miyu at first sight. Kawamura describes him as seemingly nerdy "because he is always wearing those plain glasses, he seemes to be a plain-yet-innocent boy". Kanata describes him as someone who expresses his feelings honestly. When Kurita's glasses were knocked off accidentally, Miyu sees that he is a handsome boy.
The anime TV series originally aired between 28 March 2000 and 26 February 2002 on the NHK-BS2 satellite TV network. It spanned a total of 78 episodes, and was directed by Hiroaki Sakurai. It was also later aired by Animax, which translated and dubbed the series into English and other languages for broadcast across its network in Hong Kong, Taiwan, South and Southeast Asia. It also airs on Disney Channel in Taiwan.
- Director: Hiroaki Sakurai
- Series Composition: Tomoko Konparu
- Script: Tomoko Konparu, Mamiko Ikeda, Miharu Hirami, Miho Maruo, Naruhisa Arakawa, Ryōta Yamaguchi, Hiroaki Sakurai, Tsutomu Kaneko
- Episode Direction: includes Kenichi Kasai, Kiyotaka Itani, Kunitoshi Okajima, Wataru Takahashi and Hiroshi Nishikori
- Character Design: Masayuki Onchi
- Animation Directors: includes Masayuki Onchi, Takashi Wada, Takaaki Wada, Isao Sugimoto, Hiroko Oguri and Masumi Morishita
- Art Director: Shichirō Kobayashi
- Music: Toshio Masuda
- Sound Director: Tōru Nakano
- Sound Effects: Hiroki Nozaki
- Sound Production: HALF H･P STUDIO
- Production Planning: Kīchirō Okamoto→Toshio Watanabe, Isao Yoshikuni
- Producer: Eiza Kondō
- Animation Producers: Yūji Matsukara, Takashi Satō
- Animation Production: J.C.Staff
- Production Cooperation: NHK Enterprises 21, Sogo Vision
- Production: NHK
List of episodes
- Heart no Tsubasa (ハートのつばさ Hāto no Tsubasa?, first opening theme)
- Performed by Reika Nakajima; lyrics: Yūko Matsuzaki; composition and arrangement: Toshio Masuda
- "Boy Meets Girl" (first closing theme)
- "Happy Flower" (second opening theme)
- Performed by Saori Nara; lyrics: Yūko Matsuzaki; composition and arrangement: Toshio Masuda
- Yukkuri (ゆっくり second closing theme?)
- Performed by Hitomi Mieno; lyrics: Hitomi Mieno; composition and arrangement: Toshio Masuda
The series was adapted into a card battle video game for the Game Boy Color, Dā! Dā! Dā! Totsuzen ★Card de Battle de Uranai De!? (だぁ!だぁ!だぁ! とつぜん★カードでバトルで占いで!??), developed by Video System, which was released exclusively in Japan on December 8, 2000.
- NHK official site (Japanese)
- J.C. Staff official website (Japanese)
- UFO Baby (manga) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia
- UFO Baby (anime) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia