The name of a character can often tell you a lot about his or her personality, particularly in a language like Japanese in which names can have very literal meanings. A popular root used in Japanese names is “Haru-,” which can be taken to mean “spring” when written as 春. Even if a character’s name is written with different kanji, the connection can still be made through the phonetics, and the meaning still holds through. So in celebration of the springing of, well, spring, we’ve compiled a list (in no particular order) of our favorite characters that best exemplify the nature of this great season. By that, I mean that they have “Haru-” in their name.
Haruka Amami from The iDOLM@STER – (CV: Eriko Nakamura)
If one had to pick a main character from The iDOLM@STER, it would probably be Haruka Amami. Always smiling and willing to help, Haruka acts as the life blood for the rest of 765 Pro even when things seem hopeless. But what happens when the glue that holds everyone together wears thin and that smile is no where to be found? Out of the 13 girls, Haruka’s character probably gets the most development, as she struggles with the unfortunate reality of stardom (don’t worry, it’s not as depressing as it sounds). It’s this development that, for me, catapulted the series above and beyond any expectation I could have ever had for the series.
Haruka Saigusa from Little Busters! – (CV: Keiko Suzuki)
Haruka Saigusa is always out to start trouble, much to the chagrin of the public morals chairwoman, whether it’s throwing marbles in the hallway or skipping out on detention. She loves to cook only things with eggs (very important) and has a knack for fixing things like desks and benches. She has a fondness for a particular bench at which she meets the main character, Riki, for the first time. Whenever Haruka’s on screen, her infectiously cheery demeanor acts like a breath of life, especially when she starts spinning people! However, under that playful smile belies an incredibly pained past (wouldn’t quite be Little Busters! without one though, right?).
Haruko Haruhara from FLCL – (CV: Mayumi Shintani)
The enigmatic “Vespa Woman” from FLCL is the catalyst for all the strange things that happen in that show. Her horribly energetic and at times odd behavior provides a lot of the show’s humor and serves as a great foil to Naota’s straight-man personality. While eccentric on the surface, in reality she is surprisingly selfish and manipulative, using Naoto as a means to try and aquire Atomsk’s powers for herself. Still, it’s a lot of fun watching her, as you’re never quite sure what she’ll do next with her trusty Rickenbacker bass guitar.
Haruhi Suzumiya from The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya – (CV: Aya Hirano)
When you’re a member of the SOS Brigade, there’s no telling what kind of crazy world-threatening situations you’ll be thrown into. Bossy, intelligent, and beyond eccentric, Haruhi doesn’t let anything get in her way once she sets out to alleviate her boredom. And with the power to unconsciously bend the laws of the world to her liking, the other members of the SOS Brigade have to constantly keep things in balance. Despite her outward nature, she does have a soft side when it comes to her Brigade members, especially when it comes to poor Kyon.
Haruka from Pokemon Advanced Generation – (CV: Midori Kawana)
For those of you that did not know, May’s Japanese name is Haruka which makes a lot of sense because May is a spring month. I had to pick Haruka because she is my favorite girl in Pokemon. Not only did she start the whole Pokemon contest thing, which was really entertaining, but she also excelled at it. I didn’t even mention the fact that she actually evolves her Pokemon. When she was reunited with Ash is the generation four series, she had a Venasaur and a Blaziken. Haruka is a strong girl that showed us a different way to compete with our Pokemon and that is why she is a top quality “haru” character.
Hime Haruno from Acchi Kocchi – (CV: Kaori Fukuhara)
Hime Haruno is a character that truly embodies the blooming of love in spring. This is because she gets a nosebleed every time she sees or thinks about people being romantic with one another. Why do I like her character? I am quite the fan of romance so we enjoy the same things. However, I do not just like Hime because she is a fan of romance. Her overall innocence makes her character extremely adorable and, as a result, lovable. With her love of spring romance and other adorable qualities, Hime Haruno is definitely a top quality “haru” character.