Random Curiosity

Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun – 03 »« Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun – 01

Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun – 02

「新(ニュー)ヒロインをよろしくね♪」 (Shin (Nyuu) Hiroin o Yoroshiku ne ♪)
“Say Hello to the New Heroine”

Mikorin is the true heroine, and Yuzuki isn’t shoujo manga-like at all, but they’re both laugh out loud funny, and that’s what I like to see!

The True Heroine, Mikorin

Mikoshiba-kun – who will hereafter be referred to exclusively as Mikorin – is one of the most hilarious characters I’ve ever seen! But that doesn’t do him justice. What’s so frightening about Mikorin is that he’s so adorable despite remaining a totally male character. That’s an impressive trick, because it means taking a guy who by every appearance an irritating pretty boy, and making him completely adorable by force of character alone. Usually anime fall back on the ubiquitous trap or shouta to accomplish this, but not here. Mikorin does it by embarrassing himself, being tsundere about helping Chiyo, loving his new sempai role, and being the master of shoujo flowers and bishie sparkles. And to find out that he’s the inspiration for Koi Shiyo’s (that’s the name of Nozaki-kun’s manga) heroine, Mamiko (Miyake Marie)? HAH! Poor Chiyo. Nozaki-kun’s manga is officially ruined for her.

The Oblivious Lorelei, Seo Yuzuki

Following Mikorin is no easy feat, but Seo Yuzuki (Sawashiro Miyuki)…well, she wasn’t as hilarious as Mikorin, but who is? Her ability to accidentally infuriate people and her complete obliviousness to everything around her were solid – and uncommon – comedic character traits, but what broke it open for me was the sudden tonal shift to serious town. What was that, a period piece? A war-is-hell manga? I don’t know, but her personality was enough to sweep Nozaki-kun along, which was great! And then the zinger – Lorelei! Comedy thrives on unpredictability and absurdity – or at least, Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun’s comedy seems to – and Yuzuki hits those notes, even if she doesn’t hit them quite as well as Mikorin can.

Com with a Dash of Rom

Last episode I called this a romcom, and several manga readers said that it’s really not. This episode backed up their claims. Rather than a series like Mikakunin de Shinkoukei, where romance was an important part of every episode, Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun is more like Acchi Kocchi, a comedy with a dash of romance. Emphasis on “dash” – while Acchi Kocchi tickled us with Tsumiki x Io at least once an episode, this week we only saw one Chiyo blush, and that was it. But it was laugh out loud funny, and as long as it keeps that up, I’ll be as happy as a clam.

Looking Ahead – The Cast Grows

I feel like we’ve seen the real Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun this time, and it is good. Next time we’ll add more characters, and I already like the dynamic between two of them.

We’ll make a decision about whether this show will be blogged by next week. Thanks for your patience. Series picked up.

tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Mikorin is the true heroine, & so adorable! As for Yuzuki-chan, she is a crappy shoujo heroine, but a great comedy one #nozakikun 02

Random thoughts:

  • I can understand Nozaki-kun plundering his acquaintances for character ideas; I do that all the time. It also explains why he seems to understand Mikorin & Yuzuki, but hasn’t caught onto Chiyo’s crush yet. When he’s in character analysis mode, he’s perceptive, but when he’s not (or when it comes to himself), he’s dense. We all have a blind spot for ourselves, alas.
  • Wait, so being interested in Chiyo would make Nozaki-kun a lolicon? Well then I guess I’m a lolicon, because that kind of height difference is at least 50% of my dating life! Orz

Check out my blog about storytelling and the novel I’m writing at stiltsoutloud.com. The last four posts: Writer, author, full-time author, Disorganized ≠ creative, Don’t make customers regret their purchase, and Anchor.

I’m looking for an artist for some commission work. If you’re a talented illustrator, email me at stiltsoutloud(at)gmail(dot)com with some samples. If I like what I see, I’ll explain what the job entails. (Or if you’re just really curious.) And yes, this is a paying gig.

Full-length images: 07, 08.

 

Preview

July 13, 2014 at 4:35 pm
55 comments »
  • July 13, 2014 at 4:43 pmWanderer

    Mikorin is the true heroine

    You do realize you very nearly caused me to close my browser, delete the episode unwatched, and strike it off my viewing list, since Chiyo’s cuteness is THE reason I enjoyed the first episode? Suggesting she’s being replaced is A TERRIBLE IDEA.

    • July 13, 2014 at 4:54 pmZanibas

      Overreaction much? Just watch the episode and it’ll make sense! Chiyo isn’t going anywhere.

      • July 13, 2014 at 5:01 pmWanderer

        Instant reaction. I essentially identify this show by the heroine, who is Chiyo. She’s my reason for watching the show. I come in and see that a new review for the series is up, I scroll to it, and the first line of text, even before I click into the review, says (paraprhased) “some other character is the real heroine.” Instant thought: “WTF?! The show was trying to fake me out, pretending the adorable girl was the heroine in the first episode?! I shall bring unspecified violence down upon someone for this!”

      • July 13, 2014 at 9:58 pmJames

        basically, you fell in love with a cartoon character’s “physical traits” (in quotes because she doesn’t even really exist) and got irritated because the show might not revolve around her…lol…what a strange time we live in

    • July 13, 2014 at 6:17 pmStilts

      Watch the episode. You’ll understand what I mean!

      But no worries, Chiyo is still cute. That will never change.

    • July 14, 2014 at 3:54 amSetsuna Henry

      Mikorin is the true Tsundere-kun.

    • July 14, 2014 at 5:40 pmVoyager

      Wrong order lol
      this is why one should -view- the episodes before reading a -review- :)

      (btw I agree Chiyo is adorable, and 50% of it is due to her seyuu, she’s terrific)

    • July 21, 2014 at 6:20 pmKanbaru Suruga

      SOMEONE clearly doesn’t know how to take a joke.

  • July 13, 2014 at 4:48 pmDualash

    I’m going to see Mikorin in a new light now…I can’t “unsee” him as Mamiko now XD

  • July 13, 2014 at 4:54 pms_w

    ☆★Mikori~~~n!★☆ IS JUSTICE.

    Note to self: Don’t eat dinner while I watch this show. It’s bad for the monitor, the keyboard, and my esophagus.

    Next week should be bad for watching while eating, too, BTW. >_>a

    This is definitely in my top 3 this season so far. Comedy is hard to pull off, and this show is pretty much hitting on all cylinders.

  • July 13, 2014 at 4:59 pmJames

    I was reserved on the idea of this show before it aired, but after two episodes I’m sold on it. It doesn’t resort to cheap jokes (ecchi, overt cuteness), it’s more or less just clever tride and true comedy

  • July 13, 2014 at 5:05 pmZanibas

    Wait, so being interested in Chiyo would make Nozaki-kun a lolicon? Well then I guess I’m a lolicon, because that kind of height difference is at least 50% of my dating life! Orz

    Stilts is hereby proclaimed a lolicon. If you guys meet this guy in real life, be sure to let him know. Maybe a brief ”イラ” will pop over his head! He is a writer after all~

    As a side note: no comment on Chiyo’s drawing skills? Damn son, she’s on the same level as Nozaki!

    Click the images to see all three of the character’s drawings compared.

    http://randomc.net/image/Gekkan%20Shoujo%20Nozaki-kun/Gekkan%20Shoujo%20Nozaki-kun%20-%2002%20-%20Large%2007.jpg

    http://randomc.net/image/Gekkan%20Shoujo%20Nozaki-kun/Gekkan%20Shoujo%20Nozaki-kun%20-%2002%20-%20Large%2008.jpg

    • July 13, 2014 at 5:20 pmWanderer

      Chiyo’s in the art club, remember. Nozaki draws like a mangaka, Chiyo draws like an artist, Mikorin draws like I do.

      • July 13, 2014 at 9:37 pmfortis

        so you draw flower and stuffs ?
        from now on I will call you wan-tan

    • July 13, 2014 at 6:18 pmStilts

      I have a イラ over my head now. Zanibas no baka! *runs away crying*

    • July 14, 2014 at 1:24 pmTassadar

      Images expand when you click on them o.O What sorcery is this?! :P

  • July 13, 2014 at 5:14 pmigriega

    Excuse me, I take offense to this review. Seo is the greatest character this side of the known world. She is coming to DOMINATE, and we are going to LIKE it.

    Just you wait for the next episodes, folks. Have a spare change of pants, because you’re gonna piss ‘em.

  • July 13, 2014 at 5:26 pmDvalinn

    Oh man, this episode (and especially the first half) had me in stitches. Especially the revelation that Mikorin is actually the inspiration for the main heroine (and Chiyo’s shocked reaction) is one of the funniest things I’ve seen in a long time. I’m still laughing thinking about it, which is a good sign for a comedy.

    I hope it doesn’t run out of steam later, because for now it has a lot of good things going for it. The comedic timing is great, I really like the colourful artstyle and its many artshifts, we’ve got great characters and there’s still lots of promise for the future.

    So yeah, this show has definitely earned a place in my viewing schedule this season. Most likely as one of those shows I watch right away whenever a new ep is out.

  • July 13, 2014 at 6:28 pmgoldcut

    I’m glad that this episode got the unique vibes back..The tonal shift caught me off guard. Good insertion there..
    As for romance..well since now on
    Show Spoiler ▼

    I am a little curious what makes you hesitating on blogging this series though. I totally think it should be guaranteed by now..

    • July 13, 2014 at 8:01 pmStilts

      Just want to make sure I don’t overload myself. Waiting for Episode 2 of Tokyo ESP and Blade Dance t’morrow to make a decision.

  • July 13, 2014 at 6:42 pmbelatkuro

    Mikorin best girl(next to Chiyo, of course).

  • July 13, 2014 at 7:44 pmSK

    Nozaki’s got a pretty strong arm, holding that stack of notebooks while saluting a brave warrior off to battle (…or not). Both of the new characters had me laughing, the outlook for this show is pretty bright.

    BTW, anyone else think of Seo Kouji(KNIM in particular) when they heard Yuzuki’s name? I know I certainly had イラ by my head more than once while reading that.

  • July 13, 2014 at 8:21 pmBookkid900

    Turns out that the song that Seo performed was Caro Mio Ben. What is really cool is that the sheet music shown is the actual piece that she is singing.

  • July 13, 2014 at 9:53 pmHalfDemonInuyasha

    I already love Yuzuki, lol.

  • July 13, 2014 at 11:00 pmberrish17

    Mikoshiba-kun is sooo adorable <3 Excited for Nozaki's other friend in next ep.

    In the very end, I can't believe they casted Suzuki Tatsuhisa as the guy who was gonna get confessed and said, "I wanna use the bathroom" HAHAHA

  • July 13, 2014 at 11:19 pmGermanguy

    The Voice Actors here do an amazing job

  • July 13, 2014 at 11:22 pmcryarc

    Hoouu almost all the have been introduced xD anyway stilts, I’m interested in your commission needs, I’m sending mail to you

    • July 13, 2014 at 11:24 pmcryarc

      “All the cast” sorry for the mistake><

  • July 14, 2014 at 12:29 amZhinvu

    This is a keeper. I like how the series tweaks some character stereotypes in anime. Here’s what I thought the characters would be and what I saw after.

    - Chiyo: the timid, normal girl who probably has low self-esteem and doesn’t stand out in anything, but turns out to be actually talented in art, could actually stand up for herself, and is very dependable as an assistant.
    - Nozaki: I thought he would be the usual tall, laid back, and not so sociable love interest to Chiyo, but he’s actually friendly, a bit blunt, and a shoujo manga author whose works depict a young girl’s heart and speak for a how a girl feels.
    - Mikoshiba: My first impression was…okay here’s the good-looking ladies’ man with many admirers and would likely be a jerk to Chiyo. Never expected that he gets embarrassed by his own pick-up lines and actually wants to be the dependable sempai.
    - Yuzuki: Here’s the athletic best friend to the main character, who is likely popular, sociable, dependable, and probably a tomboy. Well, she’s popular in the teachers’ hitlist, socially tactless and irritating, and dependable as a visual aid of terrible sportsmanship, but has a very feminine angelic singing voice.

    Can’t wait to see the other characters, as this show is just full of surprises.

  • July 14, 2014 at 12:51 amAnonymosity

    Short version of the first half would be “Mikorin is best girl!”, right?

    Seo might be the best example of how this series seems to be doing its characters: take good, age-old character archtypes and mix, match and twist them around until you have a new kind of character. It definitely works so I’m not complaining.

    The three Suzukis was pretty funny one too. Chiyo’s comment on the “choose one” scene especially.

    • July 14, 2014 at 7:56 amStilts

      Very apt on all points. And yes, Mikorin best girl~

  • July 14, 2014 at 1:35 amwhemleh

    I love the fact that Nozaki gender swaps all the people he gets inspiration from. Mikorin is sooo funny! I suspected this is the type of series that only gets funnier once the supporting cast shows up, looking forward to the rest!

    Also, I really like how they’re portraying artists/mangaka here. Little things like them having particular things they can draw well and taking inspiration from real people are very nice, accurate touches.

  • July 14, 2014 at 1:42 amYukie

    As a manga reader I can only say that this series only gets funnier.

  • July 14, 2014 at 1:50 amazimbe

    Mikorin… hazukashii serifu kinshi!

  • July 14, 2014 at 2:24 amMurasaki

    I literally starting rolling on the floor out of sheer second-hand embarrassment for Mikorin, but wwww! He’s so adorable- no wonder he’s the model-chara for Mamiko!

    Also that scene with the three Suzuki-kuns and Seo being so KY had me in fits. OH MY GOD.

  • July 14, 2014 at 2:40 amdanes256

    i guess should say “as expected of dogakobo”. their recent work has been good one, it’s certainly not something flashy like AoT or SAO, but they executed it very well.

    it’s kind of reminding me about hataraku maou-sama that was very well executed too, which always made my day by watching it.

    • July 14, 2014 at 8:07 amStilts

      What (pleasantly) surprises me is that they seem to have such a strong emphasis on storytelling. They haven’t yet pulled a KyoAni and moved to lovingly animating mediocre stories. Theirs are all still really good, even if they don’t branch out of their comfort zone (light romcom/comedy) very often.

      • July 14, 2014 at 7:03 pmdanes256

        another thing i like from dogakobo is that they employed young seiyuus to be the main cast

      • July 15, 2014 at 9:09 amStilts

        I like that they employed good ones. Blade Dance also employed a lot of no-name seiyuu, but they’re not hitting it out of the park like Nozaki-kun’s seiyuu are.

  • July 14, 2014 at 2:55 amMikki

    The overall feeling of Gekkan shoujo reminds me a lot of Ouran high school host club. The comedy is the same and Mikorin is also similar to Tamaki except that he realizes how stupid he sounds when flirting.

  • July 14, 2014 at 3:26 amAnnyms

    This show has pleased me a lot so far. The comedy is genuinely funny, and the characters are likable. So far this is probably the closest thing I have to fill the void that is Kawaisou, but I am laughing quite a bit so far so I am optimistic.

    I find it funny how Nozaki can easily point out that Yuzuki is oblivious and even finds it quite annoying, when he can be pretty oblivious in humorous ways as well.

    Also, the title of the episode is a nice little pun. 新(ニュー) can be seen as pointing out that 新[shin] means “new” 「ニュー」 in English. But “shinyuu” also means “best friend” or “good friend”, which Mikoshiba definitely is to Nozaki. Har har Japan.

  • July 14, 2014 at 5:27 amCybersteel

    Lorelei, how appropriate…

  • July 14, 2014 at 6:44 amNaoya

    The pacing, humor, and everything about the show is fantastic. It seems like a shojo demographic, but in actual fact, this is shonen, and at its finest too. Dogakobo is animating it really well.

  • July 14, 2014 at 8:46 amBaKaYaRou

    Dogakobo is really an excellent studio when it comes to comedy… One of their funniest show was last year’s series called Love Lab where I rofl-ed every single episode of it.

  • July 14, 2014 at 11:25 amGermanguy

    This Anime is Germanguy approved

    if you like comedy, and Characters with Soul. Then give it a try

    The Voice Actors give them Soul. As if they raise from the TV/Monitor. Like this Bear in the OP

    The Voice Actors play are Top notch. It is the essence why i fall in love so quickly

    • July 15, 2014 at 10:37 amGermanguy

      oh, and of course the well fitting sound effects. They are really in a perfect symbioses. Pros at work

  • July 14, 2014 at 11:28 amMike

    For me this is the best show of a really awful year. And the best comedy since Genshiken! I am with you, Seo is extremely funny but Minorin! Squee!

    I am never going to be able to watch ToraDora again.

  • July 14, 2014 at 11:57 amSindbad Daykay

    I say these series are great! You guys should continue with the reviews of them!!

  • July 14, 2014 at 12:08 pmDuzz

    Now I want Mikorin as a girl. LOL, to thing he IS the shoujo main character and Seo is a dick but I dunno, something about Seo look just does things for me. I mean Chiyo is cute, but Seo is more… I dunno. My type I guess lol

  • July 14, 2014 at 6:23 pmtantei-sl

    Does Seo remind anyone else of Mayumi from Bokura wa Minna Kawaisou??? Not fully but partial of her character xD or her appearance.

  • July 15, 2014 at 2:06 amAzimber

    was that actually Miyuki Sawashiro singing?

    • July 15, 2014 at 10:36 amGermanguy

      sound like a Italian song

  • July 16, 2014 at 6:46 amGracelyn

    I wasn’t going to watch this series since I just started a new job that is taking up all of my time, but then I spent four hours reading all of the translated manga after these first two episodes had me in stitches, and now, not only is this on the guaranteed watch list, but I’m so excited for how much BETTER this series is likely to get.

  • July 16, 2014 at 4:07 pmnanoed

    Yay! Stilts picked up Nozaki-kun!

    I was really hoping you’d pick this up because I loved to hear your take of things, and with the amazing Mikakunin from last season, and with this crazy good studio from that show behind Nozaki-kun, I had a feeling you’d pick this guy up! ;) Personally, I’m hooked with this show – I’ve read the manga (a 4-koma, incidentally) for this show, and these guys adapted the source perfectly. (I was worried with Chiyo’s character design, but it turned out to work perfectly! Probably because I was used to seeing a black/white version of her in the manga…)

    And you picking this piece of awesome up? I couldn’t have asked for anything more!

    • July 16, 2014 at 6:19 pmStilts

      Nyahaha! I aim to please ; )