|Alternative name(s):||AkaKane, BakaKane|
|Fandom:||Prince of Tennis|
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Akazawa/Kaneda is the ship between Akazawa Yoshiro and Kaneda Ichiro from Prince of Tennis. Within the English fandom between 2005-2008, the ship was referred to almost exclusively as 'BakaKane', a play on Kaneda calling Akazawa 'Bakazawa'. As they are characters from an earlier, less popular school, the ship was never particularly popular, with only a handful of dedicated fans at a given time.
The AkaKane tag on Pixiv is used for numerous other ships, including Reinhard/Kircheis, but there appears to be no other, more specific ship name.
Akazawa and Kaneda are both players from St. Rudolph. Of the seven regular team members, Akazawa and Kaneda are the only two who were not scouted from other schools to transfer to St. Rudolph. They are shown training together in a flashback, and Kaneda (a second year) says that he's always been following Akazawa (his senior and his captain.)
In the Tokyo Prefectural Tournament, they play doubles together, despite Akazawa normally being a singles player, because of a tactical advantage Akazawa's play style gives against Seigaku's Golden Pair. During the match, Akazawa becomes frustrated and has a temper tantrum, at which the normally reserved Kaneda confronts his senior and calls him "Bakazawa" (a portmanteau of 'idiot' and 'Akazawa'), and reminds him that this is doubles, not singles. Akazawa responds aggressively at first but then calms down, and appears to gain respect for Kaneda for confronting him. The two then are shown working together, with Akazawa positively verbally encouraging Kaneda, finally bringing the match to a close victory.
This material was considered enough to make the ship 'semi-canon' among fans of the pairing, with special attention paid to Kaneda's loyally following Akazawa through tough training.
The two do not have any subsequent appearances in the rest of the series. Because their appearance was so short and occurred very early in the series, and because they have no relevance later on or ties to other important characters, many Prince of Tennis fans have no interest in them, or flat out forget they exist.
Fanon and Character Portrayals
In fanworks, Akazawa tends to be the dominant partner and Kaneda tends to be the submissive partner, though there was one notable champion for the opposite who has since deleted her presence off the internet. Despite this, Kaneda is almost always portrayed as the one pursuing Akazawa.
Akazawa's temper is often the focus of fan characterizations, causing fanon Akazawa to be a very angry, sometimes violent partner in AkaKane fanworks, despite in canon being a supportive captain aside for his one outburst. The focus on his anger is different than his portrayal in his other popular pairing, Akazawa/Mizuki, where he tends to be portrayed as more long suffering.
For Akazawa, AkaKane is his second most popular ship, with the first being Akazawa/Mizuki. For Kaneda, AkaKane is his only notable ship. Japanese fandom at large seems to prefer Akazawa/Mizuki, with English fandom leaning towards AkaKane (but there were so few St. Rudolph fans in English the difference was negligible.]
When asking fans of other ships, many would agree that the basis for the pairing was there and would consider themselves 'passive' fans of the ship, despite not having much interest in pursuing material of it. There were no vocal detractors of the ship; though this was likely because the characters were of little significance or popularity.
- A Modern Yuletide Carol (R), written by miundel for strudy_exchange in 2009
- Dependence by tokkitsu for white_paper in yaoi_challenge (2005)