Who are those manga/anime characters for whom you can’t help but root for even when all odds are against them?
One of my favorite underdogs is Tsubaki from Giant Killing. While watching GK, I became a huge fan of his and I rooted for him during every single episode of GK. Before Tatsumi joined ETU, nobody expected much from Baki; but Tatsumi recognized the great potential that was hidden inside of Tsubaki and helped him bring it to the surface. I still vividly remember the scenes where Tsubaki showed just how awesome of a soccer player he really was.
And well, I can’t mention Tsubaki and just ignore ETU. East Tokyo United is my favorite underdog team. Watching this underdog soccer team coming out victoriously from the hardest of matches and winning against all odds was absolutely great and incredible emotional and enjoyable. ETU ftw!!
Here’s an AMV showing why Tsubaki and ETU are two of my favorite underdogs.
Last edited by destiny4ever; March 28, 2011 at 11:55 PM.
Naruto used to be my favorite underdog because he was inspiring. He never gave up no matter how hard it was and kept fighting even when he couldn't. He proved that hard work can lead to victory. I loved how he fought for others no matter how strong the opposition, like Neji and Gaara. Naruto was truly a great underdog.
Most protagonists are underdog but not always inspiring. As M3J said Naruto used to be my favorite with his never backing down attitude. So is Ichigo from Bleach. Really hard to pick a favorite, Elric brothers from FMA are also there. I also like Shioon from The Breaker, Gangryong from Veritas. General Mansu from Shin Angyo Onshi should be in my top 3.
Maya Kitajima from Garasu no Kamen.
Compared to her rival Ayumi Himekawa, all odds are just stacked against her. But she keeps standing up even thought the world loves to make her miserable. So inspiring.
Sawako from KimiTodo is my favorite. Going from the derided wall flower to acceptance, it's impossible not to root for her!
Tiger (Kotetsu) from Tiger and Bunny. He is not as young as the other nexts and he is now a sidekick instead of the main hero, so I think I can safely say he is an underdog. But I sure love to root for him. He is an awesome character.
Ohana from Hanasaku Iroha. She was sent by her own mother (who ran away with her boyfriend) to her grandmother’s inn. She is starting a new chapter in her life in an unfamiliar environment with people she doesn’t know, in fact, as soon as she arrived to her grandma’s someone told her to “die”, she is doing a job she has never done before, but instead of getting depressed she preserves and never gives up. I can’t help but root for her and I admit I love seeing her influence (in a positive way) the lives of the people around her. That is why she is my favorite girl in that anime.
Last edited by destiny4ever; May 21, 2011 at 05:05 PM.
My favorite underdog would definitely be Sawako from Kimi ni Todoke like Kaiten mentioned! How she developed over the series is heartening, and indeed, you can't help but cheer her on in her journey of self-discovery and self-improvement
Another favorite underdog would be the titular Shirahama Kenichi from History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi. What I really like about Kenichi is that unlike most other shounen protagonists, he is NOT a genius, and despite his hard work, it's not like he gets strong unrealistically fast or obtains super powers or is actually the son of someone awesome or anything of that sort. He's ordinary. As ordinary as you can get. In fact, he's weak. He runs away when the going gets tough. He's a coward.
Of course, like most other shounen protagonist he discovered something he truly wants to protect (a girl named Miu... but hey! She's WAY stronger than him. Who said anything about a damsel in distress!), and he worked his ass off (whether he wanted to or not... He had some really devilish masters) at a dojo learning a whole bunch of martial arts. The amount of hard work he put in, and his realistic growth as a result, plus the extent that he never gave up even when he was on the verge of death and stood firm for everything he believed in when he used to run away, makes him one of my favorite underdogs.
Last edited by saladesu; May 22, 2011 at 10:20 AM.
Rock lee was great. Started watching naruto after i saw him fight gaara. But the best one for me so far is kenichi from 20th century boys(i still haven't completed it though). He is the definition of ordinary, and yet is extraordinary.
I think Gats can be included here...the best thing about him is that he had a moment where he shined and relinquished underdog status, but then he fell back...he is THE underdog
Armin from Shingeki no Kyojin. He's considered an underdog compared to the two central characters. Hopefully he'll take a level in badass and find self-confidence.
I really concur with many of the choices:
Naruto, Rock Lee, Gats, Kenichi,
my own extra ones are:
Clare, Motoko Kusanagi (she truly has one of the most amazing triumphs and distance overcome!), Hinata, Gaara, Sasuke, etc (actually a lot of naruto characters are underdogs, lol), Ed (in terms of Al being better than him in combat, and in terms of him being so short, really touched me as I'm short like Ed, I so undertood him getting peeved about his height all the time, lol), Inoune, Reije, that panther Espada, (my memory of Bleach names is unexistant at the moment, lol), Revy, Saya, Vegeta, Greed, Darcia, Toboe, etc..
Last edited by HegemonKhan; May 24, 2011 at 03:00 AM.
Kanzaki Nao [Liar Game]: Honest/gullible to a foolish extent, often used and tricked by other people. Thanks to Akiyama she was finally able to shine and to get some self-confidence
Igarashi Ganta [Deadman Wonderland]: Wrongly convicted for murdering his whole class, trapped between crazy murderers and a wicked/insane prison staff.
Dr.Tenma [Monster]: Hunted by the police, an completely obsessed officer, a vengeful ex-wife and by the "Monster". Always trying to shoulder the burden alone, yet he always helps people who are in need. You just have to root for him.
What about Guts [Berserk]?
FC from Area no Kishi. All the players from the FC. They play against players twice their height and strength (the SC) in order to win the right to represent their school in a real match against other schools.
Takumi from Initial D.
He is an incredibly amazing driver but because of his age and because of the car he drives people usually underestimate him. I love how he proves people wrong with his awesome skills and I love to root for him every time he races.