I have to admit that when I first watch Nodame Cantabile anime, I wasn’t really impressed. Forgive me for being a typical girl who looks forward to seeing bishounens in mangas/manhwas/animes/dramas but I thought that this anime doesn’t seem to have any gorgeous guys. Its lead character Chiaki Shinichi is considered as handsome by practically every female students in the music school that he attends but to me, he seemed ordinary looking.
Then enters Noda Megumi aka Nodame, who’s not your average heroine. She’s one hell of an untidy person. Her flat looks like a giant trash can. She hardly showers at all. She wears the same clothing for a week. She stinks. She has a huge crush on our hero, Chiaki….and she’s a musical genius….in piano that is….
After a merely four episodes, I gave up. I thought that it’s a bore and the drawing is pretty much average to me. But somehow, when I saw new anime episodes emerge from a torrent site (this anime if I’m not very much mistaken is unlicensed in the United States. So, it’s not considered illegal to download it) and somehow I was drawn to it once again.
Well, thank goodness I renewed my interest in this series. I fell in love with Nodame Cantabile after watching many hilarious moments between Nodame and Chiaki. With those two together, there’s never a dull moment.
I was so engrossed with this anime that I started to Google for more Nodame….I just can’t get enough of it!
It turns out that this anime is in fact based on a manga by Tomoko Ninomiya. Currently in Japan, there are altogether 18 volumes out in the market. The manga also won an award for the best manga of the year or something like that. It gain popularity among the English speaking crowd (through scanlations) that a publisher in US took notice of it and license it. Unfortunately for Malaysian fans like me, I can’t find any of it in bookstores here. Even if the bookstores here did stock Nodame mangas, I don’t think that I could afford to purchase the whole lot of them. Thanks to Nodame Cantabile Illegal Scanlations (NCIS), I’m able to read the manga.
There’s also a live action drama series based on the manga. Its live action counterpart has gorgeous Tamaki Hiroshi as Chiaki and Juri Ueno as the ever weird pianist, Nodame. I must say that the actors have done a pretty good job in bringing those funny moments to live. Most of the scenes are pretty much the same as the anime and manga. But with Tamaki Hiroshi, I don’t mind watching it over and over again.
Right now, I have finished watching the whole 23 episode anime and the 11 episode live action series. But I really can’t wait to see what’s in store for these two after the anime/live action series end. That’s why I’m counting on NCIS for the scans so that Nodame fans can find out what happens next.
Overall, I must say that this manga deserves 5/5 stars. This manga is not like any other manga that I have read. It’s not cheesy and there’s not a single mushy scene between those two. It’s not melodramatic. And the best of all, the storyline seems more realistic than most shoujo mangas out in the market. Kudos to the mangaka, Tomoko Ninomiya for creating such a wonderful manga. Keep up the good work and I’m looking forward to see more Nodame-Chiaki hilarious moments.