unknown vocational college
Grandfather (manga only)
Takato Koizumi (younger brother)
Atsushi Ōtani (boyfriend)
|Manga Debut||Volume 01 Chapter 01|
|Anime Debut||Episode 01|
|Japanese Voice||Akemi Okamura|
|Drama Role||Ema Fujisawa|
Risa Koizumi (小泉 リサ Koizumi Risa, lit. meaning "little spring") is the main female protagonist of the romantic comedy shōjo manga and anime series Lovely★Complex created by Aya Nakahara. Risa is from the Osaka Prefecture on Honshu Island in Japan. Risa has always been tall for her age, being taller than the tallest boy in grade school and notably standing 167cm (5’5”) by the time she was in her first year of junior high. Her height often prompts her teachers and classmates to refer to her as “All Kyojin”.
Risa and Ōtani Meet Edit
Risa and Ōtani unknowingly first met at an Umibōzu concert that fell on Ōtani’s birthday during their final year of junior high (equivalent to 9th grade). Risa’s mother promised that she could go to the Umibōzu concert only if she made it into Maido Academy high school, which she successfully did with Chiharu’s help. Despite the fact that she was supposed to be accompanied by her younger brother, Risa ultimately ends up going to the concert alone because she waited too long to buy admission tickets.
Having never been to a concert before and being alone, Risa felt unsure of her surroundings until she met a boy who also appeared to be alone. As Risa was walking up to him, she noticed that he was crying. She asked if he was alright and he responded with a simple, “Yeah,” before answering a phone call. During the phone call, Risa finds out it's the boys birthday, and he cries again after ending the call.The concert begins before their conversation can continue. Risa rushes forward being punched, shoved, and crushed in the crowd before the boy manages pulls her out. She tries yelling "thank you" to him over the noise of the concert when suddenly the crowd and music falls silent as she yells again for him to “cheer up." Umibōzu reciprocates telling the boy to cheer up as well. Risa then yells across the concert hall that “today’s his birthday”, the crowd and, most importantly, Umibōzu wish him a happy birthday!
As the crowd disperses, Risa notices her shoe had fallen off at some point and she desperately searched for it. The mysterious boy finds her destroyed shoe in the trash and returns it to her. After realizing Risa would have to walk home barefoot, the boy offers his shoes to her and she gives him a piece of strawberry milk candy in return once again wishing him a happy birthday.
The flashback ends with Risa and Ōtani meeting up for an Umibōzu concert during the summer break of their final year of high school. They run into an old junior high classmate named Yoshii who was also attending the Umibōzu concert with Risa’s old friend, Akechiin. Risa and Ōtani reminisce on how Yoshii introduced them to Umibōzu and memories of their first concert. It’s then that they realize the “weird girl” and “elementary school boy” that they both met that day was, in fact, each other.
Risa is tall -standing 172cm or 5'7"- with a slender build and shoulder length hair. Risa has the fashion sense of a stylist, and can be seen wearing an array of fashionable clothing and various hair-do's throughout both the anime and manga.
In the anime, she has light red hair and brown eyes similar to Ōtani's. Risa wears a school uniform consisting of a white dress shirt, gray skirt, blue knee-high socks with white stripes, and reddish-pink shoes. During warmer weather she wears a peach sweater vest with red stripes and a star, and a peach cardigan with red stripes on the arm, buttons, and a star during colder weather. Risa is the only female character to not wear the uniforms traditional red ribbon necktie.
In the manga, Risa’s hair changes between light red, light brunette, and orange, while her eyes can be seen as both brown and reddish-brown. Although she is occasionally seen wearing a school unfiorm in the manga, like during the summer closing ceremony in Chapter 01, it is mentioned that their school is uniform optional.
Throughout the series, Risa is portrayed as a loud, strong, and impulsive person who is easily embarrassed by “adult” subjects such as dating, kissing, and sex. Though she is extremely confident on the outside, she internally struggles with her height and a general lack of a girly personality. Her lack of femininity is first brought to her attention by her then-crush Suzuki when he states that he does not see her as a girl, but instead more like a boy, simply because of her height.
Risa is not a cute or girly person though she isn’t a tomboy either. She takes a high interest in fashion, often helping her friend, Nobu, with her outfits and even pierces Nobu’s ears later in the series. Because of her love to help others look nice, she goes to vocational college to become a fashion stylist. Besides fashion, Risa has a fond interest in Umibōzu and virtual dating SIMS showing her less-feminine side.
Risa boasts an overly cheerful and happy front when somebody does something to hurt her. Notably when Ōtani rejects her during their class trip to Hokkaido where she smacks him on the back of the head and laughs the situation off. She later finds Nobu and Nakao where she finally breaks down from her heartbreak. Risa feels an intense sense of obligation to help her friends, best seen when she feels guilty for not being able to console Nobu when she most needed it.
Risa is not a particularly intelligent person and does badly in school, being the last of her friends to decide on a future plan. She is absolutely clueless when it comes to love, often commenting on how she had never really put much thought into being in a relationship. Despite that, she falls hard and fast when she actually finds someone she likes. She thinks highly of Ōtani’s ex-girlfriend, Mayu Kanzaki, and feels inadequate compared to her petite stature and girly personality. Risa bonds closely to her love-rival Mimi because they share feelings of inadequacy compared to Kanzaki and a mutual love for Ōtani.
Ōtani is Risa’s friend and classmate, and later Risa’s boyfriend. Risa and Ōtani started the series as rivals not wanting anything to do with each other as they were always being grouped together as “All Hanshin-Kyojin" due to their bickering and height difference. Shortly after the series beginning, Ōtani develops a crush on Risa’s friend, Chiharu, and Risa develops a crush on another classmate, Suzuki. Together they create a pact to set each other up with their respective crushes, and Ōtani becomes good friends with Suzuki to pull this venture off. It doesn’t take long for Ōtani and Risa to figure out that Chiharu and Suzuki do not reciprocate their feelings, but instead have feelings for each other. They decided to support Chiharu and Suzuki's feelings instead.
After this, Ōtani and Risa begin another rivalry to see who can get a boyfriend or girlfriend first. Risa slowly begins to realize that she really doesn't have much of a chance against Ōtani as he is already popular among girls for his looks and basketball skill. It's at this point that the pair begin to develop a close bond due to their mutual interest in the rock star Umibōzu. Together they plan to attend an Umibōzu concert on Christmas Day when Ōtani’s ex runs into them asking to spend Christmas with him. Risa encourages Ōtani to spend Christmas with his ex. Risa shows up to the concert believing that Ōtani wouldn't show up and begins to feel lonely. Ōtani ultimately does show up stating that he had plans with Risa first and that’s all that matters. This is when Risa starts to develop a deep crush on Ōtani.
It doesn’t take long after that for Nobu, Nakao, Chiharu, and Suzuki to realize that Risa has a crush on Ōtani, whereas Ōtani is completely clueless to this. Ōtani finds out that Risa has a crush on someone and that their entire friend group knows who it is except for him and he becomes extremely frustrated over this. Risa eventually confesses to Ōtani on her birthday and he believes it all to be a joke. On several occasions after this, their friends hint to Ōtani that he is the one Risa has a crush on but he continues to believe it is all a joke. Risa confesses once again during their school festival and Ōtani finally believes her. Ōtani doesn't give her an immediate answer, but eventually rejects Risa during their school trip to Hokkaido where she passes it off by laughing and telling him to forget she ever liked him.
After returning from their school trip, Risa develops a crush on their classes new English teacher, Maity, and proceeds to open the Maity Fan Club. Through a series of (un)fortunate events, Maity manages to make Ōtani jealous enough to admit to himself that he actually does have feelings for Risa. Ōtani confesses to Risa that he is “no good without her” only to realize that she had fallen asleep on his shoulder and did not hear him. Ōtani later gives her a bunny necklace for her birthday and kisses her, this being his official confession to her. Risa somehow misinterprets this and does not actually consider them to be dating for a short while until Ōtani is forced to make it clear that they are dating.
Ōtani does not express his feelings towards Risa well and is easily embarrassed when it comes to showing any sort of affection towards her. Anything considered normal is a relationship usually ends with the pair making fun of each other in their usual All Hanshin-Kyojin way. Despite this, it is still obvious that Ōtani is deeply in love with Risa and very protective over her. He shows this protective nature several times, notably when Seiko kisses Risa on the cheek and again when an old man grabs Risa during New Years. Even after a year of them dating, Ōtani still refers to Risa by her given name of “Koizumi” and only once calls her Risa, but vows to never do it again.
Previous Love InterestsEdit
Kuniumi Maitake, a.k.a. Maity or Maity-sensei, is Risa’s high school English teacher. He is an extremely handsome man and most of the girls at Maido Academy are infatuated with him in one way or another. Risa is initially drawn to Maity-sensei because he very closely resembles a character in her video game, Cain-sama, and she forms a fan club centered around him. Although Maity is pleased with the fan club, he is engaged but this doesn't seem to effect Risa and she continues running the fan club. Risa later admits to herself that she only liked Maity as a rebound and was trying to use him to get over Ōtani rejecting her. Risa eventually leaves the fan club.
Ryoji Suzuki is a friend and classmate of Risa, and her first crush of high school. Risa meets Suzuki during remedial summer classes (equivalent to summer school) where she develops a crush on him. Suzuki is completely oblivious to Risa’s feelings towards him and states that he can easily talk with her because she’s tall and he does not see her as a girl. After this statement, Risa figures out that Suzuki has a crush on her friend, Chiharu, and decides to stop pursuing him and give them her support instead.
Yoshii was a transfer student and friend of Risa’s during her final year of junior high. Yoshii was the first crush Risa ever had and the only guy she liked prior to Suzuki. Yoshii and Risa’s friendship was purely platonic throughout their time knowing each other due to her friend, Akechiin, having a crush on him. Risa developed a crush on Yoshii after he let her borrow his Umibōzu CD, but did not come to accept that she actually had feelings for him until after he had transferred out of their school.
Nobuko Ishihara and Risa met their first year of high school (equivalent of 10th grade) and have been best friends ever since. Nobu considers herself to be an older sister figure to Risa, often giving her advice on how to deal with Ōtani both before and during their relationship. Despite that, Nobu doesn't baby Risa and will scold her if she doesn't anything stupid.
Chiharu Tanaka and Risa have known each other since their final year of junior high (equivalent of 9th grade). Chiharu helped Risa study and make it into Maido Academy. Risa often looks to Chiharu as an innocent younger sister figure that she needs to protect.
Heikichi Nakao is Nobu’s boyfriend and Ōtani’s best friend. Although Risa is not close with Nakao, she appears to trust him as a friend and often informs him of how her relationship with Ōtani is going.
Seiko Kotobuki is a first year student at Maido Academy that fell for Ōtani after he protected her from a dog, and she is one of Risa's love rivals. Seiko treats her rivalry with Risa as a supportive rivalry, even giving each other advice on how to handle their mutual feelings for Ōtani. Seiko and Ōtani briefly dated before Ōtani found out Seiko is a transgender woman.
Kazuki Kohori is a junior high student and one of Risa’s coworkers at Ikebe. Kohori develops a massive crush on Risa that she does not reciprocate because she thinks of him as a younger brother. Despite this, Kohori continues to pursue Risa and even goes as far as kissing her while she was dozing off in the restaurant after work. Kohori eventually starts dating their coworker, Abe, but it is unclear if he still has feelings for Risa.
Haruka Fukagawa is a childhood friend of Risa’s that she has known since elementary. Risa often protected Haruka from bullies when they were children which pegged his affection for her. Haruka moved out of the country when they were still young and recently moved back to Japan to pursue Risa. Although Haruka is deeply in love with Risa, she does not reciprocate his feelings but instead thinks of him as a close friend outside of her main friend group. He frequently, and unsuccessfully, attempts to break Risa and Ōtani up, and questions why she would love a “shrimp” like Ōtani. Haruka wants to be the best boyfriend material he can be for Risa, and has multiple girlfriends dubbed "the harem" that he uses for practicing this.
Mimi Yoshioka is junior high student who is Ōtani’s neighbor, and one of Risa’s love rivals for Ōtani’s affection. Mimi had initially given up on dating Ōtani and accepted that Ōtani would never like her because of their vast height difference. After meeting Risa, Mimi became increasingly violent whenever Ōtani wasn't around and would threatened Risa to leave Ōtani alone. Risa continued to encourage Mimi to keep her head high despite her violent behaviors. Eventually Mimi came to accept that Ōtani was in love with Risa and decided they were all better off as friends.
Akechiin is a friend of Risa's from junior high. Risa became increasingly close with Akechiin's crush, Yoshii, causing Akechiin to become jealous and prompting the two friends to fight. Eventually Risa was able to explain to Akechiin that she did not have a crush on Yoshii and that they were simply friends to which Akechiin responded that it was unfair of her to be upset with Risa simply because they are a male and female friend pair. Risa and Akechiin later run into each other on their way to an Umibōzu concert where she finds out Akechiin never gave up on her love for Yoshii.