Lenalee Lee

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Lenalee Lee
D.Gray-man character
Lenaleelee.jpg
Lenalee Lee as drawn by Katsura Hoshino
First appearance D.Gray-man manga chapter 6 (2004)
Created by Katsura Hoshino
Voiced by Japanese
Shizuka Itō
Ai Kakuma (Hallow)
English
Luci Christian

Lenalee Lee (Japanese: リナリー・リー, Hepburn: Rinarī Rī) is a fictional character of the manga series D.Gray-man, created by Japanese writer and artist Katsura Hoshino. Within the series, set in a fictional 19th century, Lenalee is an exorcist of the Black Order organization tasked with destroying demonic beings called Akuma created by the Millennium Earl, and aiding the Black Order in its fight against the Earl's group, the Noah Family. To do this, she uses a type of weapon called "Innocence" that, in her case, takes the shape of a pair of boots. Lenalee was originally forced to become an exorcist when she was a child, but ended up appreciating it after her older brother, Komui Lee, moved to the Black Order to avoid being left alone and at the same time became friends with all the staff. Outside the main series, Lenalee has also appeared in the series' light novels and video games.

Lenalee was one of the first characters Hoshino created for the manga, most notably before the series' protagonist, Allen Walker. She originated from Hoshino's one shot, Zone, where she is depicted as a teenager who wants the Earl to revive her boyfriend. Her design changes across the series due to Hoshino's wish to draw Lenalee with different hairstyles. Lenalee has been well received by the series' readers, keeping the 4th place in every character popularity poll. Reviewers also praised Lenalee's characterization due to how easygoing she is, as well as due to her role in the story.

Creation and design[edit]

Luci Christian voices Lenalee in the anime's English dub.

Katsura Hoshino's one shot Zone featured many similar characters to those would appear in D.Gray-man, especially characters similar to Lenalee, the Millennium Earl, and General Cross Marian. Many other characters are also "leftovers" from other previous, and sometimes unpublished, works.[vol. 8:40] Lenalee was one of the earliest characters created for the series, most notably, before Allen. Hoshino based Lenalee on one real person but she only revealed who the person is to her editor who laughed at the revelation. Hoshino considers Lenalee as an ideal girl.[vol. 1:172] Her exorcist uniform was remade multiple times until the author became satisfied with it.[vol. 1:172] Lenalee was originally going to be portrayed as crabby and fiery based on her dark backstory but ended up as a nice girl.[1]

Hoshino thought that in a Victorian setting, long-haired girls tended to become the central character. After considering this, she believed a short-haired girl would stand out better and would be much cuter.[2] However, Hoshino's editor wanted the character to appear as long-haired, believing it would be better received by the readers. As a result, Lenalee ended with long hair during early chapters of the manga.[2] Nevertheless, Hoshino took advantage of Lenalee's fight against the Level 3 Akuma in order to generate an impact strong enough to make her lose part of her hair in the process.[2] Hoshino paid the most attention to Lenalee's uniform and wanted to design clothing that would be sexually appealing. As a result, the uniform included a mini-skirt. However, Hoshino notes that the design does not fit with the manga's setting and states that it is best to treat Lenalee's uniform as fan service.[2]

Hoshino still enjoyed drawing Lenalee's hair despite finding Yu Kanda's hair impossible to top. Nevertheless, the author enjoys drawing the character due to her personality and her relationship with other characters such as Komui and Reever Wenhamm. Due to her hairstyle becoming longer as the series goes on, the author said she would give different hairstyles. Ever since the manga moved to a magazine sold for older readers, Jump Square, Hoshino decided to increase the character's sex appeal by having her skirt shorter even though she is also wearing shorts underneath. After Allen became a fugitive of the Order, Hoshino wished to have Lenalee chase after him, to the point they would clash.[1] When asked about Allen's farewell hug to Lenalee as leaves the Order, Hoshino joked that she was happy with how the former matured and at the same time became taller than the latter, in contrast to the series' beginning when both of them had the same height.[3]

Lenalee was voiced by Shizuka Itō in the original Japanese animated adaptation of the manga.[4] Hoshino joked that Lenalee seemed more beautiful after she saw Itō's work. Itō was replaced voiced by Ai Kakuma in the anime sequel D.Gray-man Hallow in Japanese. Lenalee is voiced by Luci Christian in English. The apparent romantical relationship that grows within the series between Lenalee and Allen resulted in a video where Christian acted as Lenalee confessing her feelings to Allen.[5]

Appearances[edit]

Lenalee is introduced in D.Gray-man's sixth manga chapter when she shows exorcist newcomer Allen Walker the Black Order.[ch. 6] When going on a mission to slay Akumas with Allen, Lenalee explains her past: Her parents were killed by an Akuma when she was very young, and she was forced to become an Exorcist as a child. Because she was separated from her brother Komui Lee, her only remaining family member, she repeatedly tried to escape and was restrained. This caused her to hate the Order and Innocence. When Komui joined the Order to be with her, she stopped trying to escape. She now fights for her brother as well as her friends, as she now knows she has a home and family to return to.[ch. 21] Her perception of the "world" consists of her friends and family; whenever one of her friends dies, it seems to her as if a part of her world has been destroyed.[ch. 69] Lenalee's Innocence are the Dark Boots (黒い靴, Dāku Būtsu), her Equipment-type anti-Akuma weapon, take the form of a pair of black, knee-high boots that give her the ability to run at high speeds, jump to great heights, walk on water, create whirlwinds and use sound waves as footholds.[ch. 18,48,67]

When the exorcists are given the mission to save the General Cross Marian from the Noah clan, she believes Allen was killed in the journey while in the aftermath of his against her former ally Suman Dark.[ch. 48,57] As she copes with this impact, Lenalee defeats a Level 3 Akuma attacking her group's ship. She then evoksemore power out of her Innocence than she could safely handle, reducing her ability to use her boots as well as her physical mobility. During this state, her Innocence would become a crystal to protect her from harm, a behavior unheard of in Innocence.[ch. 71] This causes the Millennium Earl to believe that Lenalee might possess the "Great Heart" that both exorcists and Noah search but is saved by the returning Allen.[ch. 88] The group is then trapped in Noah's Ark where their enemies try to kill the exorcist before the Ark is destroyed.[ch. 89] With Cross' help, Allen saves the Ark.[ch. 133] After returning to the Black Order, a Level 4 Akuma attacks the HQ, and many people were injured or killed, she expresses a desire to willingly become an exorcist.[ch. 160] Accepting her conviction, the Innocence grants her greater power, becoming a never-before-seen evolved Equipment-type, dubbed a Crystal-type. These new Boots are made up of Lenalee's blood and repair themselves as long as she has blood in her body. When the Dark Boots are in their dormant state, they form two blood-red anklets.[ch. 157] With these powers, she saves Allen from the Level 4 Akuma whom they manage to exorcise thanks to Cross.[ch. 155,156,157]

After the Black Order is rebuilt, Lenalee and her friends learns Allen is the vessel of the 14th Noah; eventually the Noah will control Allen's body forcing the other exorcists to kill him if he becomes a Noah.[ch. 170] Later when Allen is imprisoned due to his transformations and escapes from the Order with other two Noah, Lenalee tries to make him return. However, she fails as Allen confirms he still considers the Order his home before his departure.[ch. 203] Three months later, Lenalee tries to cover Yu Kanda's journey to find Allen from Komui.[ch. 210]

Outside the main manga and anime series, Lenalee makes brief appearances in the three D.Gray-man spin-off light novels by Kaya Kizaki.[6][7][8] She is also present in the series' video games,[9] as well as the crossover fighting game Jump Ultimate Stars.[10]

Cultural impact[edit]

Lenalee's character has been popular within fans. In an Anime! Anime! poll, Lenalee was voted as the third female anime character fans wanted to see in yukata.[11] In the 30th Annual Anime Grand Prix from 2007, she was voted as the 9th best female character in anime.[12] In the magazine Newtype, she was rewarded as the 10th best female character in anime for her role in D.Gray-man Hallow.[13] In the Newtype's 2015–2016 best-of-anime awards, Lenalee was seventh in the same category.[14] In the four D.Gray-man character popularity polls, she has been consistently taking the 4th spot surpassed in each poll by Allen Walker, Yu Kanda and Lavi.[15] She has also been popular with cosplayers.[16] Multiple types of merchandising based on the character has been released such as outfits, keychains and action figures.[17][18][19] For Halloween 2016 new merchandise was developed, and a vienna coffee drink was based on the character.[20]

Publications for manga and anime gave praise to Lenalee's character and role in the series. While noting how the initial story arcs followed Allen's mission with other characters including Lenalee, Joy Kim from Manga Life found appealing the introduction of her character which was found comical in order to balance the bittersweet ending of the series' previous story arc. Nevertheless, Kim complained about Viz Media's multiple misspellings of Lenalee's name in the manga's third volume.[21] Kevin Leathers from UK Anime Network referred to her as "the typical female influence" due to the contrast she brings to other characters from D.Gray-man like Yu Kanda.[22] John Rose from the Fandom Post found her more symphatetic than Allen's previous ally, Kanda, which helped to enjoy the story more and felt Lenalee's characterization in the manga helped to develop more the manga.[23] Manga News agreed, finding Lenalee as an enjoyable character introduced in the series.[24] Leah Sacks from Comic Bulletin enjoyed Lenalee and Allen's relationship due to how similar they are and due to the fact they do not argue unlike Allen's relationship with Kanda.[25] Capsule Monsters' Michael Marr enjoyed Lenalee and the other supporting characters' role in the series due to their impact they have with Allen.[26]

In describing the D.Gray-man's cast, Sandra Scholes referred to Lenalee as the "rational one" and commented on her diverse personality. In regards to one of the anime's original episodes not featured in the manga, Scholes found her favorite to be one where Lenalee to be the one where Lenalee is apparently having a date yet her accompaniant turns out to be an Akuma who considers her to be attractive resulting into a funny episode.[27] Kimberly Morales from Animation Insider commented on Lenalee's tragic backstory due to how she was forced to join the Black Order organization but her reunion with her brother Komui made "become paramount to her character".[28] Morales also praised Luci Christian's work as Lenalee's English voice actress.[29] Lenalee's new type of Innocence was well received by Chris Zimmerman from Comic Book Bin for how the character accepted the powers she previously hated in order to assist Allen Walker in his fight against the 4th Level Akuma that was attacking the Black Order resulting in an appealing fight sequence which Zimmerman was satisfied afraid that this story arc would not end good due to negative thoughts regarding the previous volume's review.[30] Manga News was more critical stating that the reason the Level 4 Akuma was defeated was due to a power up in Lenalee.[31] Anne Lauenroth from Anime News Network also praised Lenalee's fight scenes in the anime's sequel D.Gray-man Hallow due to how she alone defeats multiple Akumas sent by the Noah Clan. Nevertheless, the writer found Lenalee's inhability to stop Allen from leaving the Order sad and praised their farewell scene due to how it was directed by the staff.[32]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Hoshino, Katsura (July 4, 2011). CharaGray! (in Japanese). Shueisha. p. 76. ISBN 978-4-08-870268-1. 
  2. ^ a b c d Hoshino, Katsura (June 4, 2008). D.Gray-man Official Fanbook: Gray Ark (in Japanese). Shueisha. p. 195. ISBN 978-4-08-874248-9. 
  3. ^ Hoshino, Katsura (July 4, 2011). CharaGray! (in Japanese). Shueisha. pp. 176–183. ISBN 978-4-08-870268-1. 
  4. ^ "伊藤静(Shizuka Ito)=三咲里奈" (in Japanese). Voice Artist Database. Archived from the original on February 23, 2009. Retrieved March 29, 2009. 
  5. ^ "Lenalee says "I love you" To Allen". Youtube. Retrieved August 15, 2017. 
  6. ^ Kizaki, Kaya (March 30, 2005). D.Gray-man reverse1 旅立ちの聖職者 [D. Gray-man reverse1 journey of clergy] (in Japanese). Shueisha. ISBN 978-4-08-703156-0. 
  7. ^ Kizaki, Kaya (July 4, 2006). D.Gray-man reverse2 四十九番目の名前 [D.Gray-man reverse2 forty-nine th name] (in Japanese). Shueisha. ISBN 978-4-08-703165-2. 
  8. ^ Kizaki, Kaya (December 3, 2010). D.Gray-man reverse3 Lost Fragment of Snow (in Japanese). Shueisha. ISBN 978-4-08-703232-1. 
  9. ^ "D.Gray-man 神の使徒達 (ディー・グレイマン イノセンスのしとたち) [ニンテンドーDS]" [D.Gray-man God of Apostles (Apostles of Dee Gureiman Innocence) [Nintendo DS]] (in Japanese). Konami. Archived from the original on March 15, 2010. Retrieved July 13, 2009. 
  10. ^ "D.Gray-man" (in Japanese). Nintendo. Archived from the original on March 6, 2016. Retrieved July 6, 2016. 
  11. ^ "Japanese Anime Fans Vote on 'Best Character to Attend Festival With Wearing Yukata'". Anime News Network. May 3, 2010. Archived from the original on March 15, 2017. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  12. ^ "Anime Grand Prix". Animage. Tokuma Shoten. 2007. 
  13. ^ Green, Scott (July 9, 2016). ""Kabaneri" Couple Tops "Newtype" Character Rankings". Crunchyroll. Archived from the original on March 2, 2017. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  14. ^ Green, Scott (October 9, 2016). "Japanese Fans Pick Favorite Anime From Last Twelve Months In Newtype Awards". Crunchyroll. Retrieved September 1, 2017. 
  15. ^ Hoshino, Katsura (July 4, 2011). CharaGray! (in Japanese). Shueisha. p. 5. ISBN 978-4-08-870268-1. 
  16. ^ We Love Cosplay Girls: More Live Anime Heroines from Japan. DH Publishing Inc. 2008. p. 52. ASIN B01K0URMH8. 
  17. ^ "D.Gray-man HALLOW "ボッチくん"アクリルチャーム リナリー・リー". Amazon.com. Retrieved August 16, 2017. 
  18. ^ "LUGANO D.Gray-man (ディーグレイマン) 三代目団服 リナリー.リー 風 クリスマス ハロウィン イベント仮装 コスチューム コスプレ衣装 (男M)". Amazon.com. Retrieved August 16, 2017. 
  19. ^ "LUGANO D.Gray-man (ディーグレイマン) 三代目団服 リナリー.リー 風 クリスマス ハロウィン イベント仮装 コスチューム コスプレ衣装 (男M)". Amazon.com. Retrieved August 16, 2017. 
  20. ^ Ellard, Amanda (October 1, 2016). "D.Gray-man Celebrates Halloween with Themed Cafe". Anime News Network. Archived from the original on March 13, 2017. Retrieved October 9, 2016. 
  21. ^ Kim, Joy. "D.Gray-Man v3". Archived from the original on October 6, 2009. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  22. ^ Leathers, Kevin. "ANIME REVIEW: D.Gray-Man Series 1 Part 1". UK Anime Network. Archived from the original on July 1, 2016. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  23. ^ Rose, John (August 24, 2012). "D. Gray-Man Vol. #03 Manga Review". The Fandom Post. Archived from the original on August 26, 2012. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  24. ^ "D.Gray-man Vol.3 Rewind City" (in French). Manga News. August 24, 2012. Archived from the original on August 16, 2017. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  25. ^ "Review: D. Gray Man 3-in-1 vol. 1 is great for people who love battle manga and emotional stories" (in French). Comic Bulletin. August 16, 2014. Archived from the original on September 26, 2015. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  26. ^ Marr, Michael (August 14, 2012). "D.Gray-Man Season 1 Collection Review". Capsule Computers. Archived from the original on August 20, 2016. Retrieved August 20, 2016. 
  27. ^ Scholes, Sandra (May 3, 2010). "D. Gray-Man Season 1 Part 2". Active Anime. Archived from the original on June 23, 2016. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  28. ^ Morales, Kimberly. "D.Gray-man". Archived from the original on May 27, 2011. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  29. ^ Morales, Kimberly. "D.Gray-man". Archived from the original on May 27, 2011. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  30. ^ Zimmerman, Chris (March 8, 2010). "D.Gray-Man Volume 16". Comic Book Bin. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 
  31. ^ Zimmerman, Chris (July 9, 2009). "D.Gray-Man Volume 16". Manga News. Retrieved August 16, 2017. 
  32. ^ Lauenroth, Anne. "D.Gray-man Hallow Episode 12". Archived from the original on September 24, 2016. Retrieved August 8, 2017. 

D.Gray-man manga volumes by Katsura Hoshino. Original Japanese version published by Shueisha. English translation published by Viz Media.

  1. Vol. 1 (ch. 1–7): Opening. October 2004. ISBN 978-4-08-873691-4. (in Japanese). and Opening. May 2006. ISBN 978-1-4215-0623-4. (in English).
  2. Vol. 2 (ch. 8–16): 土翁と空夜のアリア. December 2004. ISBN 978-4-08-873760-7. (in Japanese). and Old Man of the Land and Aria of the Night Sky. August 2006. ISBN 978-1-4215-0624-1. (in English).
  3. Vol. 3 (ch. 17–26): 巻き戻しの街. March 2005. ISBN 978-4-08-873784-3. (in Japanese). and The Rewinding City. November 2006. ISBN 978-1-4215-0625-8. (in English).
  4. Vol. 4 (ch. 27–36): 元帥の危急. May 2005. ISBN 978-4-08-873810-9. (in Japanese). and Carnival. February 2007. ISBN 978-1-4215-0623-4. (in English).
  5. Vol. 5 (ch. 37–46): 予覚. July 2005. ISBN 978-4-08-873832-1. (in Japanese). and Announcement. May 2007. ISBN 978-1-4215-1053-8. (in English).
  6. Vol. 6 (ch. 47–56): 削除. October 2005. ISBN 978-4-08-873865-9. (in Japanese). and Delete. August 2007. ISBN 978-1-4215-1054-5. (in English).
  7. Vol. 7 (ch. 57–67): 時の破壊者. December 2005. ISBN 978-4-08-873888-8. (in Japanese). and Crossroad. November 2007. ISBN 978-1-4215-1055-2. (in English).
  8. Vol. 8 (ch. 67–76): メッセージ. July 2006. ISBN 978-4-08-874029-4. (in Japanese). and Crimson Snow. February 2008. ISBN 978-1-4215-1543-4. (in English).
  9. Vol. 9 (ch. 77–86): 僕らの希望. November 2006. ISBN 978-4-08-874293-9. (in Japanese). and Nightmare Paradise. May 2008. ISBN 978-1-4215-1610-3. (in English).
  10. Vol. 10 (ch. 87–97): ノアズ·メモリー. February 2007. ISBN 978-4-08-874318-9. (in Japanese). and Noah's Memory. August 2008. ISBN 978-1-4215-1937-1. (in English).
  11. Vol. 11 (ch. 98–107): ルージュの舞台. May 2007. ISBN 978-4-08-874341-7. (in Japanese). and Fight to the Debt. November 2008. ISBN 978-1-4215-1998-2. (in English).
  12. Vol. 12 (ch. 108–118): Poker. October 2007. ISBN 978-4-08-873691-4. (in Japanese). and Fight to the Debt. February 2009. ISBN 978-1-4215-2389-7. (in English).
  13. Vol. 13 (ch. 119–128): 闇の吟. December 2007. ISBN 978-4-08-874435-3. (in Japanese). and The Voice of Darkness. May 2009. ISBN 978-1-4215-2599-0. (in English).
  14. Vol. 14 (ch. 129–138): みんなが帰ってきたら. March 2008. ISBN 978-4-08-874486-5. (in Japanese). and Song of the Ark. August 2009. ISBN 978-1-4215-2600-3. (in English).
  15. Vol. 15 (ch. 139–149): 本部襲撃. June 2008. ISBN 978-4-08-874528-2. (in Japanese). and Black Star, Red Star. November 2009. ISBN 978-1-4215-2774-1. (in English).
  16. Vol. 16 (ch. 150–160): Next Stage. September 2008. ISBN 978-4-08-874566-4. (in Japanese). and Blood & Chains. February 2010. ISBN 978-1-4215-3038-3. (in English).
  17. Vol. 17 (ch. 161–171): 正体. December 2008. ISBN 978-4-08-874605-0. (in Japanese). and Parting Ways. May 2010. ISBN 978-1-4215-3160-1. (in English).
  18. Vol. 18 (ch. 172–181): ロンリーボーイ. June 2009. ISBN 978-4-08-874642-5. (in Japanese). and Thief? Ghost? Innocence?. August 2010. ISBN 978-1-4215-3543-2. (in English).
  19. Vol. 19 (ch. 182–188): 聖戦ブラッド. December 2009. ISBN 978-4-08-874675-3. (in Japanese). and Born of Love and Hate. November 2010. ISBN 978-1-4215-3773-3. (in English).
  20. Vol. 20 (ch. 189–193): ユダの呼. June 2010. ISBN 978-4-08-874764-4. (in Japanese). and The Voice of Judah. February 2011. ISBN 978-1-4215-3919-5 . (in English).
  21. Vol. 21 (ch. 194–199): リトル グッ. December 2010. ISBN 978-4-08-870133-2. (in Japanese). and Little Goodbye. November 2011. ISBN 978-1-4215-4077-1. (in English).
  22. Vol. 22 (ch. 200–205): Fate. June 2011. ISBN 978-4-08-870240-7. (in Japanese). and Fate. June 2012. ISBN 978-1-4215-4210-2 (in English)
  23. Vol. 23 (ch. 206–212): 歩みだすもの. April 2012. ISBN 978-4-08-870392-3. (in Japanese). and Walking Out. December 2012. ISBN 978-1-4215-5085-5
  24. Vol. 24 (ch. 213–218): キミの傍に. November 2013. ISBN 978-4-08-870539-2. (in Japanese). and By your side. August 2014. ISBN 978-1-4215-6312-1
  25. Vol. 25 (ch. 219–222): 彼は愛を忘れている. June 2016. ISBN 978-4-08-880635-8. (in Japanese).