Twelve-year-old Ryoma Echizen joins the Seishun Gakuen Middle School tennis team, known for being one of the most competitive teams in Japan. Freshmen rarely have a chance to actually play during their first year, but Ryoma's cool confidence, combined with a deadly, un-returnable "twist serve," gain him a coveted starting spot. With rigorous and extremely intense practices, the upperclassmen of the team expect the very best from themselves, and expect even more from the new members of the team. He's made the cut but can he survive the intense competition? Join Ryoma and other first year players, as they train hard, make friends, and try to find a place for themselves on the team. Ryoma's cute but chronically shy classmate, Sakuno Ryuzaki, also has problems of her own as she hopes he will notice her. Ryoma Echizen is The Prince of Tennis. He may be ready for the Seishun Gakuen tennis team, but are they ready for him?
The exciting backdrop of high school tennis serves as the setting for the sports drama and coming-of-age story, The Prince of Tennis, or Tennis no Ōjisama (テニスの王子様). From creator Takeshi Konomi, the manga and anime depict the life and adventures of Ryoma Echizen, both on the court and off of it. The series has becomes one of the most popular manga and anime titles to hit Japan. In Japan, the manga is published in Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump (and is still ongoing), and in North America (and in English), it is published by VIZ Media as a Shonen Jump graphic novel series.
The anime aired its final episode in 2005 on TV Tokyo in Japan. On this side of the hemisphere, The Prince of Tennis anime series is slated to air on Cartoon Network's new online broadband service called Toonami Jetstream on July 17 2006.
General Note on Airdates: The Prince of Tennis airs on Cartoon Network and Viz's broadband service, Toonami Jetstream and on Toonami. Even though TV.com has broadband shows in its database, the airdates and the titles for each episode are that of it's U.S. regular Toonami airing. The Japanese titles and airdates, and the Jetstream airdates can be found in their respective episodes ONLY when dub info (titles and airdates) have been revealed.
Popularity of the Franchise: The series is extremely popular in Japan. In addition to the manga and anime, there is a half-hour weekly radio show, over 100 music CDs and Drama CDs, several games, an animated movie and a live action movie, a five episode OVA, a number of live-action musicals, and much, much more.
Seasons: Season 1: Episodes 1-26 - Intraschool Ranking Arc I (1-10), Versus Fudomine Arc (11-21), Seigaku Training (22-26) Season 2: Episodes 27-52 – Versus St Rudolph Arc (27-26), Training Filler Arc (37-40), Versus Yamabuki Arc (41-48), Intraschool Ranking Arc II (49-52) Season 3: Episodes 53-78 – Versus Hyoutei Arc (53-68), Tezuka's Leaving Arc (69-75), Shonan Arc – Part 1 (76-78) Season 4: Season 5: Season 6: Episodes 129-160 - Recreation II Arc (129-135), Junior Selection Camp Arc (136-146), Versus American West Coast Team Arc (147-160) Season 7: Episodes 161-178 - Recreation III Arc (161-165), Intraschool Ranking Arc III (166-176), Start of Nationals Arc (177-178) Season 8: Episodes 179-194 (1-13 + 3 specials) - The Prince of Tennis OVA: The National Tournament (179-191/1-13), New Year's Special 2003 (192), A Day on Survival Mountain (193), New Year's Smash 2005 (194)moreless