English: Special A
Synonyms: S.A., S・A, SA, S A, S.A, S•A, Incomplete Chorus, Food Paradise
Japanese: Ｓ・Ａ スペシャル・エー
Published: Jul 2004 to Mar 2, 2009
Score: 8.201 (scored by 9336 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
comedy romance school life shoujo
SynopsisHave you ever known someone who was better than you at everything you did? Hikari does. She's known Kei since they were both six years old and he's surpassed her at everything. Now they are the top two students in an extremely prestigious high school, with Kei holding firmly to that number one position, and Hikari is still determined to beat him, no matter what it takes.
Volume 1 contains one-shot: Incomplete Chorus
Volume 8 contains Special Short - about what Kei was like as a child and when he and Hikari first met.
Volume 9 contains Special Short - about when Yuhiro meets Sakura.
Volume 11 contains one-shot: Food Paradise
Related MangaAdaptation: Special A
Sequel: Special A: Jougai Rantou
I enjoy the fact that this story is not totally focused on a girl who has a crush on a boy (like so many shojo titles out there). I like it when a girl first feels bitter towards the boy and then slowely falls in love. Those, to me, are the cutest twists of all. Every side story involving other characters are also fun to tie into the story.
Neh...not the best I've come across. The art starts sloppy, but then gets better and better. However, the artwork of one chapter may not be drawn as good as another, more earlier one. Sometimes one chapter will be released and it'll look like the artwork was rushed. Then the next chapter will come out and it has much better art. This cycle continuously repeats.
The manga-ka has a very good way of involving almost each and every character that is introduced. Of course, Hikari and Kei are the main characters that are focused on the most, but the other characters get their moments to shine too. I think Maki Minami has done a good job of developing each of them, whether they are S.A students or not.
-It's an ongoing series spanning over 80 chapters so far. I love longer stories!
-A story with comedy and an actual plot is enjoyable to keep up with.
-Cute moments (whether they are romantic or not) make me want to read it over and over.
Non-constant artwork, good characters, a storyline that isn't too romantically mushy-mushy, and lots of competition in almost all areas. Those sum up Special A for me. read more
Special A is truly something of a treat for readers of all genres. Since I'm more of a shoujo reader, I'm going to focus on that aspect, but it's kind of impossible to not point out the outrageous humor which laces every single panel of SA.
Most importantly, this story couldn’t possibly have ran for 99 chapters like it did if it were JUST about two people falling love, no matter HOW dense one party was portrayed. So while the various romances which keep popping up are significant in keeping the story light, more pressing adolescent issues and elements are dealt with as well, lending this hilarious tale depth and longevity.
The story starts out slow for our lead couple, because even though it's painfully obvious to the entire class, Hikari, our very intensely competitive and considerate to a fault heroine, is dense about Kei's intentions. While Kei constantly keeps her on her toes often labeling her Miss Rank Two and challenging her to make her do as he wishes all the time, he is very sweet and besotted to an adorable degree with her pigheadedness. After clearly confessing his emotions at least three times over, Hikari finally gets the point even though this journey of “when-will-she?!” is tantalizingly played out, with Kei's dreamy eyelashes always making your breath catch. Their further journey is perhaps more comical with Hikari being awkward at intimacy and Kei playfully overt about it, chasing her about and taking on Akira's equally outspoken affection for "her angel".
That brings me to another point. I personally loved Akira's relationship with Hikari and her personality towards girls the most. Who wouldn’t want to be molly coddled by an onee-sama type character who is an excellent cook, kicks some major boy-ass, and it always the firs to jump to your rescue! It's so novel and vitalizing to the entire plot. As are the other SA members, each of whom gets plenty of panel space to themselves and their respective lives. You realize that even though a girl is so confident and talented, and constantly beating up the carefree nature freak, she still hesitates to confess her feelings because she is capable of the most shoujo of traits, vulnerability. While all stereotypes are cheerfully mocked in this story, none of the aggravating ones are explored such as weepy females, overbearing bishies or trite misunderstandings clearing up within the volume.
Friendship, cementing old ones and forging new ones, is another area which Special A specializes in. Every possible kind of relationship is exhibited in this series, which almost always culminates into romance. But each starts off as an awkward and inimitable bond between two characters which gradually matures and strengthens as they face trials and tribulations together and become somewhat symbiotic later on. Be it the confidante/blossoming love between Megumi and Yahiro, the tempestuous (and somewhat abusive!) bond labeled “love” between Akira and Tadashi, the unlikely friendship Ryuu strikes up with Finn, the ambiguously reverent bond Kei shares with Aoi… I could go on and on! Special A excels in making each such relationship rich and multilayered, leaving no aspect shallow or unexplored.
The art oh the art! It's splendid! While the mangaka was probably saving time by drawing stick figures and round headed matchstick men, I think I like those geometrically challenged species so much more than the dreamy Kei and Hikari sketches. They're friggin' hilarious! The poses they constantly strike and the action sequences which are liberally sprinkled across each chapter really make you want to devour them as soon as possible, but to relish them slowly at the same time. Characters sometimes have little internal monologues which verge on slapstick and you have no choice but to break into a guffaw when Hikari competes with Kei on who can be the most romantic and gets one upped each time! (Warning to easily moved readers: Kei may not look it, but he is THEE most romantic, devoted, besotted, gentle and tempting boyfriend on the planet!)
Expressions: Yes, expressions in Special A warrants a whole separate category from Art, because part of the reason SA is as big as it is, lies in the rip roaring, fall-off-your-chair, hit-your-head-hard, realize-your-pants-are-wet-coz-you-laughed-so-hard, but-continue-shaking-in-mirth-anyway, expressions that Minami Maki is so gifted at sketching! Each expression is unique, evokes an intense reaction from the reader and is completely tailor made for the scene’s atmosphere, which makes the re-reading factor for SA skyrocket.
While it's obvious the mangaka has given us well chalked out characters, I do wish Hikari could have had her way once in a while, and win at something from Kei! That girl is relentless in her pursuit even though she knows the outcome each time! Each and every such small feature in this story makes you want to read it over and over again. A definite 10! read more
Well, the two main characters of Kaichou wa Maid-sama! are the top two students at school. The same is very much true for Special A (the plot sort of revolves around it). Also like in Special A, Misaki from Maid-sama considers Takumi her enemy while Takumi oh so obviously has an interest in Misaki. The main pairings are similar is my main point.
Bascially, if you like Kei and Hikari's relationship, but want some faster development, Kaichou wa Maid-sama is a good manga to read.
The characters if the main characters in these two series are quite similar. The male protagonists, cool, cocky, admired, so perfect they don't seem human, and in love, and the heroines, determined to be the best, quite oblivious, quick-tempered...
The two are just very similar. Maid-sama advances a bit quicker than Special A does, and Special A puts more of a focus on secondary characters, but the two leave you with the same fuzzy feeling after reading them.
A boy in love with a girl, who do not know it, and who treats him as rival. similar thread, but in a different manner.
Romatic comedies about girls with strong personalities, who "compete" with a bit eccentric, but handsome boys and later fall in love with them
The main girl is smart, inhumanly strong, and can't cook, just like Hikari. Also the guy that she falls for is really similar. It's really funny and sweet too..
The main characters have very similar personalities (the girl is exceptionally hard-working, determined, strong and protective, but still cute and innocent; the guy is simply like a superhuman..) so both manga give off about the same feeling :)
I strongly recommend those who enjoy Special A to read KWMS and those who read KWMS to read Special A.
-Both follow a similar plot
-Both male leads chases after the female leads
-Both female leads have very strong characters
-Both are very fluffy, a.k.a. cheesy.
And last but not least, both are great mangas. ;)
Lol...whenever reading Kaichou wa Maid-sama...I practically felt it was sequel to Special A, with the extremely intelligent, talented,rich, and good looking male lead...and strong, determined, poor, loveable female lead. They're really similar. xD
Both are school-life, romance, and comedy-oriented. The lead female characters Misaki Ayuzawa (Maid-Sama) and Hikari Hanazono (Special A) as well as the lead male characters Usui Takumi (Maid-Sama) and Kei Takishima (Special A) have similar personalities. Reading either series will remind you of the other though each is still unique in its own way.
Overall, KwMs and SA are just the same. There are two main characters: girl and boy, the girl is not feminine, is hardworking, smart, and could be tsuntsun-deredere towards the boy, and the boy is a superhuman that might be considered too perfect as a human being, and the story resolves around those two; the girls might not show any interest in the boy which is obviously liking her since the beginning, but slowly those feelings developed. Typical shoujo stories, but they are all good to read.
Rivalry between Hikari and Kei is very similar to rivalry between Usui and Misaki. Also, the main guys are inlove with heroine and both heroines are oblivious about it.
They are sooo similar. Both protagonists are extremely strong and good at everything, but they are in second place to an annoyingly amazing guy. Both girls are kind of clueless when it comes to love, but Misaki from KWMS tends to blush more at Usui's flirting, while Hikari doesn't really react at all. Usui and Kei both are only interested and have only ever been interested in the main girls. When I first read KWMS, I thought "Wow, Misaki is like Hikari but without boobs." Also, both guys are rich, while both girls are poor.
Both main girls begin only to think as the main boys as a friend and also an enemy sometimes but then begin to gradually fall deeper in love with the boy
Both manga's are set in a school, are Shoujo mangas and have strong, independent heroines.
Both heroine are a bit dense when it comes to love while the special A heroine being very dense when it comes to matters of the heart.
The male love interest always scores No.1 in the test ranking while the heroine is always 2nd.
Special A is set in a elite private school while Maid-Sama is set in a poor public school that is about 80% male.
In Maid-Sama the heroine is the student council president trying to improve the school bad reputation while secretly working as a maid. She has a dislike of males and is know as the demon president to the male population of the school.
In Special A the 7 top raking students of the school are in a special class, where their classroom is a greenhouse and Class attendance is optional, they also have a different uniform from the rest of the school.
To be honest, a lot of shoujo manga have the same premise and characters. These 2 are no exception.
The relationship between the main male and female leads are virtually the same. If you liked kaichou, you will like SA.
Both manga feature a strong, smart, and hard-working female lead with a guy she can't seem to beat, even though he is barely trying. Also, both guys like the girls, but the girls are too oblivious to notice.
The stories are very very similar. The artwork has the same feel to it, the main characters in Maid-Sama resemble the main characters in Special A, same type of strong (but thick-headed/clueless) female lead and an even stronger male who is obviously in love with the female lead and seems to be the only one who can surpass the female in any event/competition/etc). These mangas both contain the typical shoujo manga elements: love triangles, poor female lead, rich male lead, and harem atmospheres. Basically if you like one manga you will most certainly like the other.
Both male protagonists care for and are deeply in love with the female protagonists. Also, they are rich and are more involved with the corporate world.
Both female main characters are air-headed and don't realize that they are loved. They are poor and have financial difficulties. They are both somewhat self-reliant and want to work on their issues themselves.
Both series have plenty of funny scenarios and memorable romantic moments.
Both series are set within high school.
The rivalry between the couple is verys imilar except in Last Game the guy is the one who is always second place. Other than that, in both the guys are both trying to get their love noticed by the dense girl. The difference in social position is the same, both childhood friends.
Special is longer and completed
Last game is ongoing, not many chapters so far and more romance oriented.
Both INCREDIBLY cute.
These two mangas are similar in various ways, such as the boy-girl relationship, and one of them vying for the other's seemingly apathetic attention. In S.A., Hikari (the girl) wants to beat Kei (the boy), whereas its vice versa for the Last Game.
it is similar in the way of the second and first place stuff. Special a is 99 chapters and completed and last game is only 1 chapter and ongoing. they both have romance between the two
Rivalry between Hikari and Kei is very similar to rivalry between Kujou and Yanagi, but it's a bit different because in the Last Game the girl is the one who is always first. Also, the main guys are inlove with heroine and both heroines are oblivious about it.
Someone who is used to being in first all the time gets a little bit too confident, and so they are shattered when someone beats them. So ever since their childhood, there has been an ongoing rivalry for first place.
In Last game, it is the guy who is in second place, while in Special A it is the girl.
In both cases, the guy falls in love with the girl first, while the girl is completely oblivious, and in both the guy is rich and the girl is poor.
Last game is really similar to Special A. In both manga's the guy and the girl are fighting for the first place in everything. The guy in last game is just like the guy in special A are very wealthy guys who are looking good, and a lot of girls fangirling over them.
The rivary in both manga's are very similar.
Also in both manga's the girls are very dense and poor, they don't quite get the feelings the male leads have for them, and they aren't fast to find out.
Overal I really am loving both of them so much, So if you liked you, definitely check the other one too and don't be disappointed!
The main guys are both rich, good in academics and sports, and good-looking(also blonde but Kei's is brownish).. while the girl is poor, good in academic and sports, has black hair AND dense. The main lead guys are in love with the main lead girl and they try to make them notice it ... however., the girl is too dense to realize it.
Both have a rivalry between the main couple that started in their childhood, except the guy (Kei) in Special A is the one who's always no.1 while the girl's (Hikari) no.2. When they grew, both the no.2 of both mangas decided to go to the same school as their rival and thus continues their rivalry and finding their way into love with a few twists.
The two are absolutely adorable <3 :)) Totally recommend it ;D
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