Challengers (manga)

Cover of Vol 1 of the DramaQueen English translation
Genre Yaoi, Comedy
Written by Hinako Takanaga
Published by Hakusensha (original) Kaiousha (current)
English publisher United States DramaQueen
Demographic josei
Magazine Hanamaru Manga
Original run 19951999
Volumes 4
Anime and Manga Portal

Challengers (チャレンジャーズ Charenjāzu?) is a shōnen-ai manga by the Japanese manga artist Hinako Takanaga, who also authored Little Butterfly and The Devil's Secret. The first volume was originally called Goukaku kigan (合格祈願?, Prayers for a passing grade) before the series was retitled Challengers. The series is licensed in German by Tokyopop Germany under the title Küss mich, Student![1] and in French by Taifu Comics under the title Rien n'est impossible.[2] The sequel to Challengers is The Tyrant Falls in Love.



Tomoe Tatsumi, a student from Nagoya, visits Tokyo to take an entrance exam for a university. While he is wandering around the streets of Tokyo late at night looking for his hotel, he runs into Mitsugu Kurokawa, a Japanese office worker who had been out drinking with his friend Isogai. Isogai throws up on Tomoe and Kurokawa offers to clean his clothes and let him stay with him for the night. Tomoe accepts the offer and the next morning goes to take the exam. When Tomoe is getting on the train back to Nagoya, Kurokawa kisses him. Tomoe looks shocked and appalled and Kurokawa thinks he'll never hear from him again.

Later, Kurokawa receives a post card from Tomoe saying he passed the entrance exam. Tomoe returns to Tokyo to look for a place to live and asks Kurokwa for help, who offers to let him sub-lessee in his apartment. Tomoe wants to save his family money and accepts his offer. Kurokawa mentions he had an American step father and Tomoe wonders if that was the reason he kissed him the first time, because it was a foreign greeting he picked up from him. Kurokawa goes along with it at first but eventually he confesses his love to Tomoe. Tomoe doesn't know his own feelings and is confused and irritated, but he seems to have feelings for Kurokawa. Their relationship develops gradually, but not without interference from various friends and relatives.

Tomoe's short-tempered older brother, Souichi Tatsumi, is suspicious of the living arrangement and tries to get Tomoe to move back home. Souichi is homophobic because he was nearly raped by his professor at university. His undergrad student assistant is gay and has a crush on Souichi. Their story is continued in the sequel, The Tyrant Falls in Love.


  • Tomoe Tatsumi
  • Mitsugu Kurokawa
  • Taichirou Isogai
  • Souichi Tatsumi
  • Tetsuhiro Morinaga

Manga List

No. Original English
Release date ISBN Release date ISBN
1 November 1996 (Original)[3]
March 10, 2004 (Gush re-release)[4]
ISBN 978-4592203216 (Original)
ISBN 978-4877243371 (Gush re-release)
March, 2006[5] ISBN 978-0976604532
2 November 1997 (Original)
April 10, 2004 (Gush re-release)[6]
ISBN 978-4592204114 (Original)
ISBN 978-4877243449 (Gush re-release)
August, 2006[7] ISBN 978-0976604549
3 November 1998 (Original)
May 10, 2004 (Gush re-release)
ISBN 978-4592204206 (Original)
978-4877243517 (Gush re-release)
January, 2007[8] ISBN 978-0976604556
4 November 1999 (Original)
June 10, 2004 (Gush re-release)
ISBN 978-4877243548 (Gush re-release) March, 2007[9] ISBN 978-0976604563


Julie Rosato noted that it was obvious that Challengers, dating from 1995, was one of Takanaga's early works, as the art is not as polished as her later works, and there are some cliches in the storyline. However, Rosato found the first volume on the whole amusing.[10] Writing about the second volume, Rosato feels that although the story is like other BL, Takanaga's execution is entertaining.[11]


Further reading

This article incorporates information from the German Wikipedia.
This article incorporates information from the German Wikipedia.

External links

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Look at other dictionaries:

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