Eiji Okumura is the deuteragonist, as well as a main character along with Ash Lynx in Banana Fish.



Eiji is a slim Japanese youth with black hair and dark brown eyes. Despite being an adult, he is often mistaken for a child, even in Japan. He is seen in a variety of clothing choices throughout the series, often with Ash's clothing. In Garden of Light, Eiji's hair has grown longer and we see it sported in a ponytail; he has also adopted the use of glasses. Akimi Yoshida, the mangaka, based Eiji's likeness off of Hironobu Nomura.


Eiji is very aware of his surroundings and has a very kind personality, but he can be stubborn and can even be moderately rude when prompted. He is also inquisitive about things unfamiliar to him such as Ash's gun. As the series progresses, he starts depending on Ash.

History Edit

Eiji was an accomplished pole vaulter before an injury interfered with that. It was part of the reason Ibe decided to bring him to New York with him.

Story Edit

Main article: Eiji Okumura/Synopsis

Eiji stares in wonder watching an airplane depart, before he is snapped out of his day dream like state with Ibe calling for him to board a plane of their own. The two make it to New York and meet with Ibe's friend Charlie. Skip takes the two to a bar where they are able to find Ash Lynx, the person they are supposed to interview. They get ready to start ask questions and take pictures when Ash calls Eiji a little kid. Eiji responds that he is older than him, and Ash said he looks very childlike. When the bar is attacked by Arthur and some of his men, he and Skip try to escape through the back when they get caught. Eiji doesn't realize how big of a mess he got himself into as a kidnapper beside him is shot through the back of the head.

He and Skip are taken to an abandon warehouse where they are used as bait to lure Ash and await his arrival. Skip explains that Marvin has a thing for Ash. Skip and Eiji are thrown into a room, and Ash gets thrown inside after getting whipped by Marvin. Eiji tends to his injuries and watches as Ash knocks Marvin out when he returns, and the three make a run for it. Arthur's men chase after them, but they reach a dead end. Eiji sees a long pipe, and pulls it away from the wall, telling the two that he knows how to pole vault, and will do it over the looming wall in front of them. Skip tells him that he shouldn't risk his life doing that, and Eiji says he would rather risk his life trying to save them. He successfully pole vaults over the wall, leaving Skip and in particular Ash speechless. Although Eiji's cry of pain was heard as he landed on top of some crates, he simply pulls out a sharp of glass that had stabbed him in the arm. He calls for them to hang on and that he will get help.

Relationships Edit

Shunichi IbeEdit

After getting into a slump because of an injury which halted his competitive pole-vaulting efforts, Ibe takes notice and takes Eiji along with him to America as his assistant. He affectionately refers to him as "Ei-Chan." Ibe acts as Eiji's guardian while in America.

Ash Lynx Edit

Along with Shunichi Ibe, Eiji first meets Ash Lynx when interviewing him at a bar about gang life. During their first encounter, Eiji asks to touch Ash's gun. Ash, although known to be distrustful of people and had never let anyone touch his gun prior to that moment, allows Eiji to hold his gun in Eiji's hands. This initial meeting already lays the foundation for the amount of trust they put in each other later on in the story, and sets apart how Ash treats Eiji in contrast to other people. Despite having known each other for a considerably short time, Eiji forms a close bond with Ash throughout the perilous situations both of them become involved in. Ash protects Eiji as much as possible, and even teaches him how to use a gun. Eiji becomes very dependent of Ash due to this. Later, they have been shown to have romantic feelings for each other, although they never truly act on them.

Skip Edit

Eiji met Skip at a bar where Ash would hang out. Eiji and Skip both got kidnapped along with Ash trying to rescue them. Sadly while Eiji was out to get help from the police, Skip was shot in the chest by Marvin in order to protect Ash from being shot. After Eiji heard the news he started to blame himself for Skip's death but was reassured by Ash that it wasn't his fault.

Shorter Wong Edit

Eiji became very close friends with Shorter and even began shedding tears because of the Banana Fish's effect on his brain that makes him afraid of Eiji.

Frederick Arthur Edit

Being the rival of Ash Lynx, and from the way Arthur treats them both he is against Arthur. Currently through the anime has not interacted with him as much.

Yut-Lung Edit

Yut-Lung, both in the manga and the anime, despises Eiji. This is because of his effortless penchant for comforting people despite his naivety and his plain personality. It is implied that this is also because Yut-Lung is jealous and resentful of Eiji's strong bond with Ash. Yut-Lung paralyzes Eiji while Shorter Wong helps for his friends to be safe. But as time goes on, he in secret helps Eiji and explaining certain things he may not understand. Eiji stages an escape and holds him hostage in order to do so.

Sing Soo-Ling Edit

After being saved by thugs, Eiji explained what happened to Shorter's death and why Ash had to kill him, Sing and Eiji become very close friends throughout the manga and anime.

Blanca Edit

He is unknowingly targeted by Blanca, and shot across the right arm from sniper fire from him as a warning to Ash.

Etymology Edit

His kanji name 英二 (eiji) meaning "great, second".

Episode Appearances Edit

Eiji Okumura/Image Gallery Edit

Main Article: Eiji Okumura/Image Gallery

Anime Gallery Edit


"Forever." (to Ash)

"If I ever lose you too... I'll go crazy." (to Ash)

Ash: "Do I scare you?" Eiji: "Never."

"Come back safely. I'll be waiting for you, forever." (to Ash)

(To Ash) If you feel responsible, the same goes for me.

(To Ash) "My words might not mean anything now, but just remember one thing. Even if the world turns on you, I'll always be on your side."

(To Ash) "Humans can change their destiny. They have wisdom leopards don't. Besides, you're not a leopard."

(To Skipper & Ash) "If I'm going to die anyways, at least I'll die trying!"

(To Ibe) Ash is strong.

(To Ash) Don't apologize. That's something for us Japanese to do."

(To Ash) "Listen to your big bro for once, okay?"


  • One of Eiji's favorite foods is natto- a fermented bean dish usually eaten during breakfast, which he has made Ash begrudgingly taste.
  • Eiji has a dog named Buddy, who he rescued from a trash dumpster.
  • Eiji is afraid of mice.
  • Eiji has been compared to multiple animals, Frederick Arthur refers to him as a Japanese bobtail, Blanca compares him to a rabbit, He also has some bird motifs due to Ash Lynx constantly mentioning him being able to fly, his sweater from the first episode and his phone case.
  • Eiji grew up in Izumo, a small town in Japan.


Banana Fish
Main Ash Lynx | Eiji Okumura | Max Lobo | Shunichi Ibe | Griffin Callenreese | Jessica Randy | Yousiss
Corsican Mafia Dino Golzine | Frederick Arthur | Abraham Dawson | Manor Heim | Blanca | Eduardo L. Fox | Marvin
華僑 Lee Yuern | Sing Su Rin | Lao Yen Tai
Street Kids Shorter Wong | Alex | Skip | Bones | Kong | Cain Blood

ニューヨーク市警 Jenkins | Charlie Dickinson
その他 Alexis Dawson
Chapters 01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19
Episodes 01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24
Music found & lost | Prayer X | FREEDOM | RED
Manga 01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19
LOCATIONS New York | Cape Cod | Los Angeles | Corsica | Izumo