Eyeshield 21 (US)
Aishirudo Nijuichi (Japan)
Author and Artist:
Author: Riichiro Inagaki
Artist: Yusuke Murata
25 volumes (continuing)
- Shonen (boys') manga
- Anime Tie-in
About The Manga:
Originally serialized in Weekly Shonen Jump magazine in Japan, The first 25 volumes of Eyeshield 21 racked up graphic novel sales in excess of 16 million copies, and is the most popular manga series about American football published to date.
It has inspired an animated movie and TV series as well as video games and trading cards. The Eyeshield 21 anime series is now available online on Toonami Jetstream.
Eyeshield 21 is also credited with doubling the amount of Japanese teens playing American football over four years.
About the Author / Artist:
Riichiro Inagaki was born in 1976 in Tokyo, Japan.
Yusuke Murata was born July 3, 1978 in Miyagi, Japan. He won the 122th HopStep Award in 1995 with his story, Partner and won the 51th Akatsuka Award 2nd prize in 1998 with Samui Hanashi (Cold Words).
Sena Kobayakawa has been picked on and forced to run errands for the bigger kids for years. But his time to shine arrives when he enrolls at Deimon High School and gets recruited for the football team. Apparently all those years of being a go-fer has trained Sena to be amazingly fast and agile, making him a perfect running back.
On his first day of high school, Sena meets the two team members of the Deimon Devil Bats: Ryokan, and Yoichi. Ryokan is a friendly guy who's big, strong and has an infectious enthusiasm for American football. Then there's Yoichi, the devious, scheming quarterback whose skills on the gridiron and knowledge of football strategy is sometimes overshadowed by his fondness for shooting off powerful weapons to convince others to see things his way.
Although both Ryokan and Yoichi are talented players, the Deimon Devil Bats are a woefully understaffed team, with only two full-timers and a ragtag bunch of miscellaneous athletes that Yoichi manages to blackmail, uhm, convince to play on their team on game day. Other teams write them off as disorganized losers who'll never get their act together enough to win. With Sena on their side, the Devil Bats finally have a chance to win (if they can ever teach him how to play the game).
Hoping to keep Sena's talents focused on the football team (and avoid losing him to rival teams or the Deimon High track or soccer teams), Yoichi suits up Sena with a tinted eyeshield to hide his identity and gives him a new alias: "Eyeshield 21." Can Sena's "golden legs" overcome his lack of knowledge of the game of football, and can this mismatched team turn their dreams into championship reality?
Main CharactersSena Kobayakawa
Sena has always been a good-hearted person, but his meek nature means that the bigger kids often take advantage of him. Sena's life changes dramatically when he discovers that his innate speed and agility makes him a natural athlete for a sport he barely understands: American football.
Big-hearted and just plain big, Kurita is the wall of defense for the Devil Bats. With a head shaped like a chestnut ("kuri" = chestnut in Japanese), Kurita can be a little slow on the uptake, but his infectious enthusiasm for football inspires Sena to give the sport a try.
Hiruma is the quarterback of the Deimon Devil Bats. A brilliant schemer who looks like a Rice Krispies elf gone bad, Hiruma has an endless supply of guns, explosives and a demon dog as well as access to embarrassing information about his classmates, which he shamelessly uses to "convince" people to see things his way.
Mamori is Sena's childhood friend who's also his upperclassman at Deimon High. She's very protective of Sena, but she somehow never figures out that he's really Eyeshield 21.