Ippo Makunouchi (幕之内一歩 lit. makunouchi ippo) is the eponymous protagonist of Hajime no Ippo.
He originally started boxing to try and answer one simple question: "What does it mean to be strong?". Since then he has formed a rivalry with Miyata Ichirō, Sendō Takeshi, Mashiba Ryō, a brotherly bond with Takamura Mamoru, Aoki Masaru, Kimura Tatsuya, and a deep trust for his coach, Kamogawa Genji, whom he now aims to become a world champion for to honor the coach's teachings.
His surname is Makunouchi. In Japan, surnames are listed before given names.
|Anime:||Round 1 (S1 - 01)|
|Native Name:||幕之内 一歩|
|Nickname(s)||"The Wind God"|
|Birth Date:||November 23, 1973|
|Family:|| Kazuo (Father, Deceased)|
|Height:||165.1 cm (5'5")|
|Occupation:|| Makunouchi Fishing Boat Worker|
Professional Boxer (retired)
|Reach:||165.1 cm (65 in)|
|Stance:|| Peek-a-Boo Style|
Brawling Style (once)
|Previous Affiliation(s)||Kamogawa Boxing Gym|
|Previous Trainer(s)||Kamogawa Genji|
|Date(s) Retired:|| First Time: February 1993|
Second Time: January 1999
|Wins by KO:||23|
|Championships:|| Eastern Japan Rookie King|
All Japan Rookie King
JBC Featherweight Championship
|Japanese:|| Kiyasu Kouhei|
Sachi Kokuryu (Young)
Miki Shinichirou (Drama CD)
Ippo was raised by his mother, Makunouchi Hiroko for the majority of his childhood because Ippo's father, Makunouchi Kazuo died early in his childhood when his boat crashed in a storm. During the time when his father was missing out in the sea, Ippo went everyday to the shore to wait for his return. He believed his father's words that upon his return he will never leave Ippo and Hiroko again.
Although his father never returned, Ippo was able to satisfy himself that his father fulfilled his promise by finding the cap his father wore. After his father died, Ippo grew up assisting his mother with the family fishing boat business. During his school days, when ever something happened at school, he would come home, hiding his feelings by saying that he was okay.
It all started that day when Ippo was stopped being bullied every day and going home crying, when he was sixteen. Being saved from the bullies by Takamura Mamoru, he was brought in to the Kamogawa Boxing Gym and was accepted after sparring Miyata Ichirō in which he lost, but showed potential. He had a rematch again and Ippo this time won successfully. Coach Kamogawa Genji took him under his wing as his one and only to be taught student. He took the professional test and passed, and he debuted, winning and advancing after two matches for the East Japan Rookie King Tournament. Winning against all the opponents given, that some remained rivals throughout the story, up to the finals which was against Mashiba Ryō, who defeated Miyata, breaking the promise between Ippo and Miyata to fight in the ring as a pro. Ippo continued his road to become champion since there are ways they could face each other there again. He then faced the West's Rookie King, the "Rocky of Naniwa" in the All Japan Rookie King Tournament and became victorious.
He met Mashiba Kumi in the process, the sister of a rival, and as time passed they started growing feelings for each other and as well his brotherly bond with Takamura, Kimura Tatsuya and Aoki Masaru grew. Ippo had another goal blinking inside him, the strong national champion. As a chance to face the champion, Ippo went through the Class A Tournament, facing the "Speed Star" Saeki Takuma and the "Red Wolf" Alexander Volg Zangief, in which he successfully defeated both. After winning the tournament, Ippo faced the champion, Date Eiji in the title match. Ippo, however, lost and temporarily retired.
As the dark feelings cleared, Ippo came back stronger with a new move that his body allowed him to have, the Dempsey Roll. Winning his comeback match, he went back and faced the champion once again, this time being "Naniwa Tiger" Sendō Takeshi, a rival long awaited to be fought again. Ippo won the difficult match successfully and finally became the national champion. Kumi and Ippo's feelings for each other remained unseen, even after some hard times such as him winning over her brother, and his match with Kimura, they still continued having this outline relationship, although none expressing their feelings yet. Ippo in the meantime began defending his title three times before more challengers find ways to break the Dempsey Roll.
Upon defending the national championship successfully up to eight times, defeating those who sought to destroy the Dempsey Roll and improving heavily while being the champion, he then took a detour to fight some of the unique Asian National Champions in order to get a world ranking, as well as the OPBF ranking, in order to fight Miyata. They had unique boxing styles, showing him the world is vast with many different types of boxers. Ippo had a difficult time dealing with them, especially with the genius Wally. He defeated them successfully each with a lesson for himself and improved drastically once again as a fighter and gains plenty of more experience. Rivals also progressed with him, by their own road to glory.
As the match with Miyata doesn't happen due to certain events, Ippo pushes forward to the world, and gets matched with the 2nd ranked in the world, Alfredo Gonzales. Takamura suspected that Ippo has grown weaker. The day of the match happened, and he failed to deliver, but it was nowhere near easy for both, Ippo did great damage to the world ranker. Sometime after, his love interest Kumi told him it is better to stop boxing, but Ippo promised her the next time he loses he would retire.
That caused a lot of thoughts of him being broken. Takamura told him there is a line that he must cross in order to advance to the rest of the world. He witnessed it first hand with the beast matches of his rivals and Takamura, attempting to understand what he meant. About ten Months later his comeback match happened with Antonio Guevara, and lost once again shockingly by only the fourth round after all the hard work he went through with his coach.
He decided to retire from boxing upon the promise of Kumi. At the request of Shinoda Tomoyuki, he became a second for Kimura, Aoki and Itagaki for their matches. Ippo then scouted for boxers to take under his wing and found Taihei Aoki and eventually Kintarō Kaneda who joined the Kamogawa Boxing Gym.
|Tokyo, Japan||4(10), 2:45||KO||"10 MONTHS IN THE MAKING"|
|Tokyo, Japan||7(10), 1:17||TKO||"GO TO THE WORLD!"|
|24||WIN||23-1-0||1997-10-25||Kojima Hisato||Tokyo, Japan||1(10), 2:07||TKO||"OPERATION WORLD DOMINATION II"|
JBC Featherweight Title
|Tokyo, Japan||4(10), 1:28||TKO||"IN THE JUNGLE"
"Survival Match of Asian Champions"
|22||WIN||21-1-0||1997-02-15||Malcolm Gedo||Tokyo, Japan||8(10), 2:37||TKO||"WINNER TAKES ALL!!"|
"Survival Match of Asian Champions"
|21||WIN||20-1-0||1996-08-01||Jimmy Sisphar||Tokyo, Japan||4(10), 2:30||TKO||"SCRATCH"|
"Survival Match of Asian Champions"
|20||WIN||19-1-0||1996-01-25||Take Keīchi||Tokyo, Japan||6(10), 1:00||TKO||"The Challenge for the 7th Defence"|
|19||WIN||18-1-0||1995-10-03||Karasawa Takuzou||Tokyo, Japan||2(10), 2:15||TKO||The Challenge for the 6th Defence|
|18||WIN||17-1-0||1995-06-15||Sawamura Ryūhei||Tokyo, Japan||7(10), 1:15||TKO||"DRAGON SLAYER"
5th Title Defence
|17||WIN||16-1-0||1995-03-21||Shimabukuro Iwao||Tokyo, Japan||7(10), 2:15||KO||"Submarine Wars"|
4th Title Defense
|16||WIN||15-1-0||1994-12-20||Yi Yonsu||Tokyo, Japan||1(10), 0:32||TKO||"Battle of Hawk"|
3rd Title Defence
|15||WIN||14-1-0||1994-08-20||Yamada Naomichi||Tokyo, Japan||2(10), 2:42||KO||"Proof of Power" |
2nd Title Defense
|14||WIN||13-1-0||1994-04||Sanada Kazuki||Tokyo, Japan||5(10), 2:33||TKO||"First Step" |
1st Title Defense
|13||WIN||12-1-0||1993-11-20||Sendō Takeshi||Tokyo, Japan||7(10), 1:34||KO||"Lallapallooza" |
JBC Featherweight Title Match
|12||WIN||11-1-0||1993-07-11||Ponchai Chuwatana||Tokyo, Japan||2(10), 2:00||TKO||"The Road Back",|
|11||LOSS||10-1-0||1993-02||Date Eiji||Tokyo, Japan||5(10), 2:32||TKO||JBC Featherweight Title Match|
|10||WIN||10-0-0||1992-10||Alexander Volg Zangief||Tokyo, Japan||5(8), 1:21||KO||"The Lone Wolf"|
Class-A Tournament Finals
|9||WIN||9-0-0||1992-07||Saeki Takuma||Tokyo, Japan||4(6), 2:12||TKO||"Speed Star"|
Class-A Tournament Round 1
|8||WIN||8-0-0||1992-06||Okita Keigo||Tokyo, Japan||1(10), 2:58||TKO||Rose 1st JBC Ranking|
|7||WIN||7-0-0||1992-02||Sendō Takeshi||Tokyo, Japan||3(6), 3:00||TKO||All Japan Rookie King Tournament|
|6||WIN||6-0-0||1991-12-24||Mashiba Ryō||Tokyo, Japan||1991-12-24||TKO||East Japan Rookie King Tournament Finals|
|5||WIN||5-0-0||1991-11||Hayami Ryūichi||Tokyo, Japan||1(4), 2:59||KO||East Japan Rookie King Tournament Semi-Finals|
|4||WIN||4-0-0||1991-08||Kobashi Kenta||Tokyo, Japan||4(4), 2:58||KO||East Japan Rookie King Tournament Quarter-Finals|
|3||WIN||3-0-0||1991-06||Jason Ozuma||Tokyo, Japan||2(4), 2:52||KO||East Japan Rookie King Tournament First Round|
|2||WIN||2-0-0||1991-02||Fujiwara Yoshio||Tokyo, Japan||1(4), 2:50||KO||'|
|1||WIN||1-0-0||1991-01-03||Oda Yūsuke||Tokyo, Japan||3(4), 2:35||TKO||Pro Debut|
This list does not include the numerous spars Ippo has had with his fellow gymmates.
|Preceded by||Title||Succeeded by|
|Sendō Takeshi||JBC Featherweight Champion|
November 20, 1993-1997
|Okita Keigo||All Japan Featherweight Rookie King||Shigeta Akira|
|Okita Keigo||East Japan Featherweight Rookie King||Shigeta Akira|
Throughout the story, he has met a lot of different people, with half of them being rivals during his time as a professional boxer.
Striking a resemblance to his father, he has black, shaggy hair and thick eyebrows. His body, while being in the featherweight division, is stressed as extremely muscular. In terms of skin tone, Ippo is tanned. His eye colour is dark brown in the manga, and a mix of green and yellow in the anime. It should be noted that Ippo has a larger than average penis, a quality apparently not uncommon amongst featherweights as Sendou has one as well, according to Takamura.
Later, Ippo shaved his hair as a way to take the guilt of having injured Taihei after he slapped him.
As a child, Ippo was a very shy, kind and obedient boy who was also very strong-willed and stubborn. He carries most of these personality traits as he got older. He is usually a kind and reserved person who dislikes fighting, and because of that he had been bullied since grade school. He would also come home after school, holding back his tears and try to convince his mother that everything was alright after being bullied.
Despite his strength and courage, Ippo still behaves rather meek out of the ring and often humbles himself around his rivals. For example, even though he has defeated both Mashiba and Sendou, he fears Mashiba and tries to avoid discussing a second rematch with Sendou whenever he is around. He also continued to be intimidated by Umezawa, his former bully, long after he began boxing. He has a great deal of respect for his gymmate Takamura and former Japanese Featherweight Champion Date and he was completely shocked when World Featherweight Champion Ricardo requested a spar with him.
His dream is to one day face Miyata in the pro ring, and the two of them view each other as eternal rivals. They both also influence each other to keep on boxing. Despite these feelings towards each other, they appear to also view each other as friends and Ippo even refers to Miyata as "Miyata-kun". Because Ippo tends to know a lot about Miyata, people tend to call him a Miyata Otaku, while his gym mates jokingly imply that he must be "gay for Miyata". Miyata is a person Ippo will never forget. At the same time, Ippo aims to become equal to Takamura in terms of strength.
Kamogawa puts him through strict training and the two of them have a strong teacher-student bond. Ippo trusts Kamogawa and has faith in his teachings, while Kamogawa believes that Ippo may be the one who will eventually realise his World Championship dream. Takamura has said that Kamogawa seems more like Ippo's father than his coach, and because Ippo's father died when he was young he begins to view Kamogawa in that way. When Ippo decided to be a second, he wanted to raise boxers alongside Kamogawa, as he believed he left a bad taste in his mouth when he retired.
Ippo can also be fixated on a certain thing, specifically the Diagonal Dempsey Roll, being so single-minded that he gets overheated, frustrated and loses his boxing style.
Ippo is quite friendly, and many of his rivals have become friends of his, most notably are Miyata, Sendou, Date, Sanada, Volg, and Kobashi, whom all still keep in touch with him from time to time. He is well liked by his gymmates, especially Takamura, Aoki, and Kimura. Even though he still has the personality of a young boy, he still manages to serve as a good senpai for his kouhai Itagaki.
When it comes to love, Ippo is definitely a late bloomer, he is naive, pure-hearted, and awkward. He is in love with Kumi whom he dates frequently, and she feels the same for him, but because of the silent pressure of Kumi's older brother Ryou, the "attacks" of reporter Iimura and Nanako, and the meddling of Takamura and the others, their relationship has yet to progress much. The one time Ippo confessed to her, Kumi had fallen asleep after drinking too much alcohol, and unfortunately didn't hear it.
Because of his personality, Ippo is seldom seen as being angry before a fight, even if his opponent insults him or his boxing skills. However, it has been shown on rare occasions that he is capable of displaying anger whenever an opponent says or hurts someone close to him, or does something to look down on the sport of boxing, which he loves. Such occasions have been when he saw Sawamura intentionally commit fouls in his previous matches, despite having the upperhand, and then later on when he struck Kumi with a sharp jab, cutting her face. Another occasion when his opponent, Kojima, insulted his previous opponents, both in person and publicly in a magazine, and also insulting Kamogawa's teaching methods as they were fault. This resulted in Ippo displaying a new attitude, even going so far as to calmly state to Takamura, when asked if he would have any problems, that "this won't take long", referring to the match. Ippo's anger side also shows when he sees someone getting bullied, confronting the bullies.
As an In Fighter, having one of the best punches in Japan, he has any noteworthy milestones such as fighting in the All Japan Rookie King Tournament, winning in the A Class Boxer Tournament, and once crowned as the Featherweight JBC champion with an impressive KO rate of 100%. His punching power, durability, and fighting spirit are considered to be his greatest attributes; each is unparalleled in Japan. His punching power in particular is said to be among the world's best, with the implication that Ippo's punches are comparable to World Champion Ricardo Martinez. His style has had vast improvements throughout the series, and now consist of sways, liver blows, and a Sunday Punch: the Dempsey Roll. His strong flurry of blows have earned him the title Wind God. He is the number one In-Fighter in Japan.