Ranked #103
Sakamichi no Apollon

Sakamichi no Apollon

Alternative Titles

English: Kids on the Slope
Synonyms: Sakamichi no Aporon, Apollo on the Slope
Japanese: 坂道のアポロン


Type: TV
Episodes: 12
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Apr 13, 2012 to Jun 29, 2012
Duration: 22 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or older
L represents licensing company


Score: 8.511 (scored by 48403 users)
Ranked: #1032
Popularity: #330
Members: 91,326
Favorites: 2,162
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.

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The beginning of summer, 1966.

Because of his father's job situation, freshman high school student Kaoru Nishimi moves by himself from Yokosuka to Kyushu to live with relatives. Until then, Kaoru was an honor roll student who tended to keep to himself, but meeting notorious bad boy Sentaro Kawabuchi starts to change him. Through his devil-may-care classmate, Kaoru learns the attractions of jazz and finds the first person he can call a "friend". He also discovers how much fun it is to play music with a pal.

Other characters include Sentaro's kind childhood chum, Ritsuko, who is the daughter of a record shop owner; the mysterious upperclassman, Yurika; and Brother Jun, the much-admired leader among their peers. Set against the backdrop of a seaside town with a scent of American culture, this series is a drama about young people coming into their own, crossing each other's paths, and finding friendship, love, and music!

(Source: Official Website)


Episodes  0 / 12
Aired  Apr 13, 2012 to Jun 29, 2012
Status  Finished Airing
No data, yet..

Related Anime

Adaptation: Sakamichi no Apollon

Characters & Voice Actors

Kawabuchi, Sentarou
Kawabuchi, Sentarou
Love, Andrew
Love, Andrew
Hosoya, Yoshimasa
Hosoya, Yoshimasa
Mukae, Ritsuko
Mukae, Ritsuko
Nanri, Yuuka
Nanri, Yuuka
Stevens, Rebekah
Stevens, Rebekah
Nishimi, Kaoru
Nishimi, Kaoru
Patton, Chris
Patton, Chris
Kimura, Ryouhei
Kimura, Ryouhei
Martinez, Cynthia
Martinez, Cynthia
Sato, Amina
Sato, Amina


Maruyama, Masao
Watanabe, Shinichiro
Director, Episode Director, Storyboard
Nakazawa, Kazuto
Episode Director, Storyboard, Animation Director, Key Animation
Umemoto, Yui
Episode Director, Storyboard

Write a review | More reviewsReviews

Feb 20, 2015
First of all, I must say it's been a while since I've enjoyed a series as much as I enjoyed Sakamichi no Apollon.

The story itself has an amazing pace, and in my opinion, has the perfect combination of romance, drama and music. The developments feel very natural and there are no fillers. The only "complain" I can have from the story is that the ending might feel a little unsatisfying. Luckily, if you end up feeling unsatisfied like me, you can read the extra volume from the manga and I can assure you that you'll feel a lot better after reading it.

The art is okay, read more
I found this review Helpful  Not Helpful
Sep 11, 2014
“My body feels light...It's as if I've been born again...I feel like I've got wings on my feet.”

That quote from the main character I think holds true to even us as viewers to some extent. Every so often you’ll find a series which has a rare few moments which take your breath away, they hold you spellbound, you get caught in overwhelming elation, sometimes after the credits have rolled you’re still staring at the screen wondering why you haven’t realised that the episode ended a few minutes ago. I think Sakamichi no Apollon is one of those rare few series.

It was in the mid 60’s read more
I found this review Helpful  Not Helpful
May 16, 2014
The story consists of a lot of romance tropes, and really tends to play up it's character drama. I didn't enjoy the romance stuff very much, but I feel like the show worked remarkably well in portraying the tension of the relationship between characters through music. When the characters are playing music together, you really can feel their emotions come through, and I thought that was really impressive. The characters, and their interactions with each other were really the best part of the story, despite the otherwise pretty boilerplate storyline.

The art was very nice as well. Everything had a very detailed, realistic look to it read more
I found this review Helpful  Not Helpful
Oct 5, 2014
I saw this released awhile ago and never even tried episode one because it looked kinda boring to me. I gave it another shot and I already instantly started liking it.

The animation is really freakin' good, it is a 12 episode kinda show so I do expect really good animation, and this doesn't hold back. Whenever they play instruments, the animation looks smooth and solid and you can see them hitting the right keys and toms, no made up sounds. It is really hard to animate playing music (a lot of animes take shortcuts and show flashbacks to reduce animation time spent on playing) but read more
I found this review Helpful  Not Helpful


Beck is a modern high school coming-of-age story where a nobody becomes a somebody by becoming a member of a rock band. Kids on the Slopes is a josei romance drama disguised as a high school coming-of-age story centered around jazz in the 1960's.

On the surface the two series appear similar. They both use music as a way of introducing and connecting their characters with the rest of the cast; including love interests that act as motivational factors. However, where as jazz is just a means to romantic ends in Kids on the Slopes, in Beck music is the most important aspect: it's the driving force of a story where character growth is linked into the titular band's successes and failures. There's a romance subplot in Beck that causes frustration and rage, for sure, but there's no denying that Beck is, first and foremost, about music.

Kids on the Slopes' greatest problem is this: its manga was serialised in a magazine called 'Flowers'. Hardly the ideal platform for a coming-of-age story with a a male lead, and that shows through; both in terms of the romantic focus AND male lead characterisation that's overly feminine. Jazz barely gets a look-in aside from when the cast hang out together. In contrast, Beck is more male-orientated with its lead's characterisation, and although romance gets far less attention, the heroine has caused anger in more than one fan for being realistically bitchy. That sort of naturalness is missing from Kids on the Slopes with its far more shoujo / soap operaish approach to romance.

In short: if you're looking for something shoujoish with music on the side, watch Kids on the Slopes. If you're a male looking for a coming-of-age story centered around music, watch Beck. Simple as that.
Both definitely have a similar feeling, "Nodame Cantabile" is about classical music, where "Kids on the Slope" is about jazz, but they both have the same goal that you should enjoy the music your playing and give it feeling and not just playing it like it's written on the music sheet.
"A famous violinist once said that by exchanging (musical) notes, you get to know one another; to understand one another. As if your souls were connected, and hearts overlapping. It's a conversation through instruments. A miracle that creates harmony. In that moment, music transcends words."

Kids on the Slope has its two MALE leads connect via music. There's every suggestion that the thugish drummer would like to pound more than his drums as they compete and connect by playing jazz together. The glasses-wearing, scrawny lead finds liberation by escaping from the restrictions of classical piano playing and happiness by bonding with his 'friend'. The show does try to mask the homosexual undercurrent with heterosexual romance subplots for both characters, but since music is the main focus, both subplots remain on a road to nowhere. And, fittingly, the male leads end together... in a spiritual sense, at least. It's all too obvious the series was created by a female, both in terms of top/bottom character designs and the actual content.

Shigatsu is a far more male-orientated, shounen experience. The piano playing lead in Shigatsu is still very much four-eyed and scrawny, just like the lead in Slope, but his musical performance partner is a beautiful long-haired blonde violinist. The same way jazz liberated the lead in Slope, the heroine in Shigatsu injects life into its male lead by inspiring him with her rock-star style violin playing and energy; prompting him to be her partner. Like Slope, there's also romantic subplots with other characters, but it's crystal clear the musical pairing will later pair up in other, just as passionate ways. Maybe.

Also, although it's just a matter of preference, I prefer Shigatsu's shouenish FREAK OUT humour over Slope's more subdued, realistic tone. That's a key difference between the two. Shigatsu presents an inexplicably anime mental block issue over piano playing, yet it's never as depressing as Slope because of the injection of humour. Childish but fun. Also-also: THE MUSICAL PERFORMANCES. A lot of attention was put into them; especially in Slope where an actual person did the drumming motions. And the violin playing in Shigatsu was equally captivating.
Both series have a very mature approach in romance and relationships. Music is also an important factor in both series, but romance and drama predominate.
Both are Josei and have a love polygon where almost everyone´s love is unrequited. Both give you the same feeling and have excellent voice actors and soundtrack.
They both revolve around love and friendship..both are based around multiple friends who love each other. Both will make you cry, laugh and experience tons of emotions and feelings at once. Both are amazing. Both are masterpieces.

Opening Theme

"Sakamichi no Melody (坂道のメロディ)" by YUKI

Ending Theme

"Altair (アルタイル)" by Motohiro Hata meets Sakamichi no Apollon

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