Bryan Hawk (ブライアン • ホク, lit. buraian hoku) is a character in Hajime no Ippo.
He played the main antagonist during New Challenger, in which he fought and lost to Takamura Mamoru in his first WBC Junior Middleweight championship defense. He is now retired and suffering from punch phobia.
|Japanese Name||ブライアン • ホク|
|Homeland||New York, America|
|Weight Class||Junior Middleweight|
|Height||182 cm (6'0")|
|Reach||182 cm (71")|
|Style|| Pure Violence|
|Previous Trainer(s)||Miguel Zale|
|Date(s) Retired||December 1994|
|Wins by KO||17|
|Championships||WBC Jr. Middleweight Champion|
|Manga Debut||Round 366|
|Anime Debut||Round 16 (New Challenger)|
|Voice Actor||Akio Otsuka|
Bryan grew up as a street urchin in the tough slums of New York. According to him, every day there was a fight for survival and only the strongest walked out alive. One day Miguel Zale encountered Bryan in an alleyway. Bryan was shown running and being cornered by a man with a gun, but emerged victorious nonetheless with the man's unconscious and bloodied body in his hand. Bryan then continuously beat the man despite the latter being unconsciousness; Miguel watched everything from the street. When inquiring on why Miguel was watching him the latter stepped up to stop Bryan from potentially taking a life, to which he responded that it's too hot, as if his body was burning from the inside, and that the only way to stop this feeling was to execute more violence or be in bed with women. Realizing Bryan's ecstatic love of fighting and violence at this point, Miguel pondered what would happen if he set Bryan loose in the boxing ring, and lured Bryan to join the world of boxing by claiming that the sport would give the latter forgiveness in unfortunate circumstances such as murder, which Bryan interpreted as a 'license to kill'.
Gleefully, Bryan follows Miguel and, over a short period of time, brutally made his way to become the WBC Junior Middleweight Champion. During this time, he is unaware that David Eagle is watching his rise through the ranks and formulating a strategy against him should Hawk decide to step up a weight class.
Reigning undefeated, Bryan is matched with Japanese KO king Takamura Mamoru for his first title defense. Hearing that his opponent is Japanese, Bryan immediately underestimates Takamura and disappears from his gym for approximately nine days, reappearing during Takamura's match against Morris West with two women. Unfazed when Morris loses by ring-out KO, he appears again in Takamura's changing room, provoking him and nearly starting a brawl. To Fujii Minoru's surprise, Bryan was able to block one of Takamura's bare knuckle punches without staggering, telling Makunouchi Ippo that is was alright because Takamura's bare knuckle punch was merely a 'handshake'.
Seen again in a public sparring match against an anonymous boxer, Bryan mockingly complains that the boxer was too strong for him, and asks for weaker sparring partners. Noticing Bryan's nonchalant attitude in the ring, Kamogawa Genji and Yagi Haruhiko leave the gym as soon as Hawk's girls walk in. Not moments later, Kamogawa and Yagi rush back in to find that Hawk had left his opponent in a bloody mess in seconds and was merely waiting for his girls to arrive. Hawk then leaves the gym and is not seen again until the press conference, where he punches Takamura in the chin during the picture. Makunouchi Ippo, Kimura Tatsuya, and Aoki Masaru were barely able to stop Takamura, but Kamogawa was the one who angrily grabbed Hawk's collar telling him that his actions were "unforgivable" to which Hawk responds with a quick backhand, causing Takamura to fly into a rage. Hawk then departs with a speech about Japan breeding better boxers with his genes, leaving countless Japanese reporters and onlookers enraged and unsettled.
Hawk is not seen after that until the match against Takamura. Gaining the upper hand in the preliminary rounds, Hawk is constantly surprised by Takamura's speed and precision. Due to his lack of knowledge on boxing basics, Hawk begins to lose against Takamura's boxing spirit and guts in the later rounds despite his 'ecstasy'. The fight ends with Hawk spewing blood and collapsing into the canvas, officially crowning Takamura the new WBC Junior Middleweight Champion.
It is later mentioned that Hawk's fight with Takamura ended his career as a boxer. It is unknown where Hawk is now after retirement. Later in the David Eagle arc, Bryan Hawk can be seen in David's flashbacks as the one person David trained hard and even developed a strategy to defeat, first one being David's visiting Bryan Hawk's residence to find out why he lost to Takamura and second was during David's flashback where he was at a live match witnessing Bryan Hawk's rise to the top of the boxing world.
|LOSS||Takamura Mamoru||KO||8(12)||1994-12-20||Tokyo, Japan||"Battle of Hawk" WBC Junior Middleweight Title Match, lost the title.|
|WIN||Unknown||KO||1(12)||1993||New York City, USA||Took down former WBC Junior Middleweight World Champion by first round KO and ring out.|
|WIN||Unknown||KO||?(10)||N/A||N/A||Probably a world ranker, and first ring out.|
Bryan possesses a dark-skinned complexion. He has short blonde hair styled in spikes with thick eyebrows and relatively large horizontally slanted eyes. His pupils are small and black in color, but change drastically when Hawk is experiencing ecstasy, in which his enlarged pupils turn green and the whites of his eyes turn bright red.
According to Fujii Minoru and many other reporters, Bryan is comparatively larger in body size than many Junior Middleweight boxers in Japan but is surprisingly not in need of weight management. Trained in the same manner as Takamura Mamoru and Miyata Ichirou, he is perfectly capable of fighting in the divisions between Junior Welterweight and Lightweight classes.
Growing up in the slums of New York has given Bryan a 'survival of the fittest' view on the world around him. He is a natural street brawler and displays one of the more bloodthirsty antagonistic attitudes seen in the series. When in pinches, he displays an ecstatic love of violence and killing characterized by a sudden 'burning' in his body that can only be pacified with continued violence or sexual intercourse with women. Impulsive and judgemental, he enjoys provoking others and underestimating Japanese boxers.
His long string of victories against boxers has given him a most arrogant and ignorant personality. During his WBC Junior Middleweight Championship press conference in Tokyo, Japan, he openly declared his willingness to give genes to Japanese women (whom he refers to as 'delicacies') in order for Japan to breed boxers strong enough to surpass him. He is notorious for his flippant attitude towards boxing and is known to barely train before matches.
Shown to care only about women and the time he spends with them, Hawk has a group of female fans known as the Hawk Girls that cling to him during his visit to Japan. He intentionally draws a sparring match against a Japanese boxer longer so as to wait for his Hawk Girls to arrive, later leaving the boxer in a bloody mess after mere seconds upon realizing that his fans have arrived.
One of the strong violent fighters introduced in the series, Hawk has displayed enough boxing prowess to be able to rival and exhaust Takamura Mamoru in a match (though it is also fact that the latter was weakened by weight management). His style has been referred to as "truly wild" by Date Eiji, a statement reinforced by his own trainer, Miguel Zale, who stated that Hawk's fighting is not boxing, but "pure violence". Hawk combines a wild and unorthodox style in boxing matches, throwing punches whilst utilizing flexibility to bend over backwards and hang on the ropes. The angle in which he throws his punches are so random, no one has managed to analyze his fighting style and predict where his next attack will come from. This flexibility, combined with Hawk's raw power, sharp reflexes, and reach gained from his no-guard stance makes him the toughest and most fearsome opponent Takamura Mamoru has faced throughout the series.
Although Hawk is hard to nail when he is swaying backward, he can be pushed over very easily while in that position. Furthermore, if he becomes tired, he can no longer sway backwards, which means he can no longer perform his infinity punch. Hawk's lack of a guard works against him in such a scenario.
Takamura demonstrated that Hawk has many openings in his guard whenever he does put one up, which could be a potential result of Hawk not practicing guarding very often. His tendency to swing widely also earned him the final counter that knocked him out.
His second noted that although he was unpredictable and hard to read due to his unorthodox style of fighting, his punches were not direct and did not hit the vital points making it harder for him to knock out an opponent than Takamura.
- His character resembles real life boxer Naseem Hamed (Prince Naseem), for what he was wearing sometimes on his matches and the moves and as he sways, are similar to Bryan Hawk.
- Bryan Hawk's personality resembles real life boxer Ricardo Mayorga. Nonstop trash talking before his fights, hatred of training, and as he fights mostly swinging. Both of their raw talent made by their violent past and also have a crazy attitude to their opponents.. It also seems that when Bryan Hawk is in his 'ecstasy' state, he adopts a style similar to that of Mayorga, although with greater accuracy and speed.
- In the anime, Hawk's "Ecstasy" state was signified only by his eyes turning blood-red with green irises. In the manga, however, Hawk also grows an erection.