Attacker You! (アタッカーYOU! Atakka Yō!?) is a 1984 Japanese manga series by Jun Makimura and Shizuo Koizumi published by Kodansha. An anime series, consisting of 58 episodes of 24 minutes each, was produced by Knack Productions and broadcast by TV Tokyo from April 13, 1984 to June 21, 1985. The DVD version was released in Japan on August 20, 2004.
Never released in the United States, the Attacker You! anime achieved a strong level of popularity in several European countries, including Italy (Mila e Shiro, due cuori nella pallavolo), France (Jeanne et Serge), Spain (called both Dos fuera de serie and Juana y Sergio) and Poland (Pojedynek Aniolow). The anime has been rerun several times in Italy since its original broadcast there, and the manga was also released in Italy. The Italian, Spanish and French dubs were reportedly so popular that they inspired many young female viewers in Italy, Spain and France to join volleyball teams at their own schools.
Attacker You! is the story of ambitious and energetic thirteen year-old junior high schoolgirl You (pronounced Yoh) Hazuki, who moves to Tokyo from the Japanese countryside to live with her father Toshihiko, a cameraman recently returned from Peru, and attend school. You's mother is not in the picture, having left when You was very young. Also living with You and her father is her younger brother Sunny, who is very attached to his older sister and tends to follow her everywhere she goes, including to school and to her volleyball matches. However, You's father is not supportive of her volleyball playing, and You is puzzled as to why he gets so angry about it.
You, who has exceptional jumping abilities, is passionate about volleyball and dreams of one day being a part of Japan's national women's volleyball team in the 1988 Seoul Olympics. She joins her school's girls' volleyball team and quickly becomes one of the top players, although Daimon, her coach, is brutal and behaves violently toward his players when they make mistakes or fail to live up to his expectations.
You makes a loyal friend in the kindhearted Meiko (nicknamed "Chibi") and an instant enemy in the captain of the girls' volleyball team, Nami Hayase, a cold, arrogant girl whose entire life is volleyball and who doesn't take kindly to her bubbly new teammate. You and Nami also become rivals for the affections of Sho Takiki, the handsome, dashing captain of Hikawa's boys' volleyball team. You puts as much energy into trying to get Sho's attention as she does into her game, and even takes to attending extra training sessions coached by Sho in the morning before school just to be near him. Eventually, You and Nami form a tumultuous friendship, which comes to a head when Nami joins an opposing professional team coached by Daimon. You also befriends ace attacker Eri Takigawa, a girl from a rival team, the "Sunlight Players"; You and Eri eventually join the same professional team.
- Yuko Kobayashi as You Hazuki
- Naoko Matsui as Nami Hayase
- Kazuyuki Sogabe as Shingo Mitamura
- Michihiro Ikemizu as Toshihiko Hazuki (Yu's father)
- Yumi Takada as Eri Takigawa
- Creator: Shizuo Koizumi
- Director: Kazuyuki Okaseko, Masari Sasahiro
- Scripts: Hideki Sonoda, Yoshihisa Araki, Susumu Yoshida
- Animation Director: Satoshi Kishimo
- Character Designs: Jun Makimura, Teruo Kigure, Kyomu Fukuda
- Music: Shiro Sagisu
- Theme Songs: OP- Seishun Prelude (Prelude of Youth), ED- Twinkle, Twinkle, performed by Harumi Kamo
- Theme Song Performance: Harumi Kamo (original version), Cristina D'Avena (Italian version)
Western Versions and Connection to Attack No. 1
Many of the character names were changed for the Italian, French, and Spanish versions of the Attacker You! anime. In the Italian version, You is Mila Hazuki and Sho is Shiro Takiki. In the French version, You becomes Jeanne, Sho is Serge, Nami Hayase's name is changed to Peggy Hayase (interestingly, her name remains Nami in the Italian version), and Eri Takigawa becomes Marie Takigawa; the Spanish dub, which was based on the French version, used the French names for Nami and Eri, although You was renamed Juana and Sho became Sergio (the Spanish versions of the characters' respective French names). The Italian theme song sung by Cristina D'Avena is also considered a classic in Italy, and the French and Spanish theme songs use the same melody in the vernacular language.
Although Attacker You! was not released in the German market, it is interesting to note that Kozue, the heroine of the earlier volleyball drama Attack No. 1, was named Mila (as You Hazuki was for the Italian Attacker You!) in the German-dubbed version of that 1969 series (retitled Mila Superstar, which also curiously uses the same theme song melody as the Italian, French and Spanish Attacker You! dubs).
European versions of the Attacker You! anime also created a link between this series and Attack No. 1 which did not exist in the original Japanese versions. In the Italian version, Mila (You) is a cousin of Mimi Ayuhara (the Italian name for Kozue of Attack No. 1), and dreams of becoming a volleyball star just like her. This alteration to the storyline carried over into the French- and Spanish-dubbed versions of the anime. Thus, Attacker You! is sometimes considered a spinoff of Attack No. 1, although there is in Japan no connection between the two series. Nippon Animation's 1977 TV series Attack on Tomorrow is the closest thing to an actual "sequel" or "spinoff" to Attack No. 1, although it also technically is not a spinoff or sequel as it too was based on an existing manga by a different artist than that of Attack No. 1.
In addition, the Italian production staff censored some potentially objectionable content from the original Japanese version, namely scenes of Coach Daimon's brutal and violent behavior toward his players and occasional scenes of bare breasts in shower scenes. These edits carried over into the French dub, while the cut scenes were retained in the Spanish version.