Hana Yori Dango TV 1-4
synopsis by Jareth David (from J.U.R.A.I.'s Necronomicon 1999 Anime Guide)
Tsukushi Makino comes from a poor family, but her brains get her into Eitoku Gakuen, an extremely private school. The school is controlled by a group of the richest most popular boys who call themselves the F4. Crossing their path can be dangerous as it leads to brutal hazing from just about the entire student body. The weak-willed classmates use the F4’s orders as an excuse for a series of extremely cruel acts to be perpetrated upon the target of the dreaded ‘red card’.
One day Makiko falls down the steps and accidentally lands on Doumyouji, a member of the F4. As he is tormenting her, Tsukushi (being a very good friend and someone who won’t stand for her friends being bullied) tells him off and ends up red-carded the following day. He decides to test her friendship believing that nobody cares enough abiout a friend to risk getting caught in the crossfire. Tsukushi later begins to notice that Rui, though a member of the F4 might actually have some humanity left in him. After several incidents with her classmates she decides to declare war on Doumyouji who starts to fall for the first girl to ever stand up to him and decides to kidnap her & give her an involuntary makeover. Yet another great shojo series that I feel compelled to see all 51 episodes of! Even Harmalade Roy likes it.
HANA YORI DANGO TV 12-16
synopsis by Jareth David (from J.U.R.A.I.'s Necronomicon 2000 Anime Guide)
Tsukushi ‘the weed’ Makino has character, something that her classmates all seem to lack. Money corrupts and the student body of Eitoku Gakuen will follow every whim of the powerful 'F4' (Flowery 4) sometimes even hazing a student without the F4's permission. Their pathetic lives are so meaningless that they are driven by the bloodlust of the mob mentality.
With Rui in France chasing after the girl he loves (she dropped her fashion model career to become a lawyer), Doumyouji has taken the opportunity to pursue Makino. When everyone gets the wrong idea about them, Makino, overwhelmed by her newfound popularity, forgets to tell everyone they’re mistaken. A girl whom she thought was a friend is using her to get to the F4 and playing the sweet & innocent role for all its worth despite her hidden nightlife as a trashy-dressing, trash-talking club slut. Makino is apparently drugged & framed for spending the night with a German boy. The students won’t take this transgression lightly…even if they don’t bother scrutinizing the photo ‘evidence’.
Tony seemed a bit surprised by the series’ use of extremely melodramatic music and even more surprised that he actually kinda liked this shojo series.