「この気持ちが恋じゃないなら、きっと世界に恋はない。」 (Kono Kimochi ga Koi Ja Nai Nara, Kitto Sekai ni Koi wa Nai.)
“If This Feeling Isn’t Love, Then There Is No Love At All”

Osu, Zanibas here subbing in for Stilts (again) while he’s out doing even more dubious activities (again). Let’s dive right into this finale–a bittersweet goodbye to what has been a show full of laugh-out-loud comedy. Although the last episode ironically used one of the most overused plot devices known to romance, the ending was sweet and hopeful, as all feel-good romantic comedies should do. It’ll be tough to say farewell to this cast of inverted tropes, but here’s to hoping someone sensible (or crazy) convinces the right people to give us another season.

The Valentine’s Day skit and the first half of the festival skit shouldn’t have been of surprise to anyone. It is the show’s way of introducing all of the major characters one last time, wrapping up any loose ends unrelated to shipping before the curtain call. Today’s setup was misunderstandings galore, where it seems that getting everyone on the same wavelength at once is an impossibility. It’s always been amusing to see every character think sensibly about everyone else’s scenario save their own, such as Kashima’s inability to recognize how her relation to Hori is viewed by everyone else, or how all the male characters can question Nozaki and Chiyo’s relationship while simultaneously not recognizing their own. Wakamatsu is an especially ridiculous case of this, where his imagination knows no bounds when trying to figure out Seo’s seemingly random actions.

Overall, it was an alright lead-up to the fated fireworks scene, allowing us to peek into the misunderstandings of our cast one last time. Some of the misunderstandings have gotten dry and over-used, such as Nozaki’s unyielding (and narrow sighted) focus on his craft, but overall, it was still a pleasant episode to watch.

But, after all those last gags, we come to that scene. Clearly, we’re all thinking, “will they kiss!?” hoping that the show pulls a fast one on us and breaks another trope one last time, and the show definitely put some of us on the edge in what was ultimately going to happen. Despite all the warning signs of poor lighting, loud fireworks, and a still largely unconfident Chiyo and unaware Nozaki, there was still hope! Hope in the face of trope-tastic adversity!

Before we got to that scene though, the flashback was a sweet call back to the beginning of the series, before Chiyo regularly wore her signature polka-dotted ribbons. The flashback had what that we expected–an awestruck Chiyo falling in love with a pretty cool Nozaki. However, what was interesting about this moment is that it gave us a small window into what their beginnings were like, before all these misunderstandings clearly came into play.

For much of the series, the comedic gold and character progression has largely been fueled by constant misunderstandings and spontaneity, yet the relationships formed in the series stem from a genuine and honest common point. Kashima and Hori are on completely different wavelengths, yet they both mutually respect each other for the acting ability they possess. Seo and Wakamatsu, though they seem like two dancers with four left feet, share this common aspect of being good. As I mentioned in my last post, Seo does good but ends up coming off as bad, while Wakamatsu tries to dissuade Seo but instead ends up being nice. For best girl Mikorin, his own big mouth gets himself into lots of trouble, yet shares rapport with the rest of the cast for his genuine ability to be charming when he’s not trying.

For Chiyo, these 12 episodes have been a long journey in attempting to figure out Nozaki, whose thought processes are all over the place. Starting from square one where her confession was misinterpreted, every episode, Chiyo’s expectations get let down when she’s hoping the hardest, while suddenly being lifted up again when Nozaki does something completely unexpected. Nozaki’s character is a shining example of how appearances betray what’s inside, which is why today’s flashback was so important. For Chiyo, we must remember that she didn’t fall in love with Nozaki because he was a mangaka–that’s precisely the source of all of her misunderstandings. Instead, Chiyo fell for Nozaki because of his ability to make her smile and to take her under his wing. From lifting her above the gate, to inviting her to help with his manga, all the way to offering to walk her home under his jacket, Nozaki has consistently been looking out for Chiyo, just as much as he’s looked out for his manga. It is this sense of just being nice to Chiyo despite his appearances that caught her eye and, as Chiyo mentioned herself, “has only continued to grow.” We can clearly see how that has grown with all the nice things that these two have done together despite misunderstandings, because it is that core relationship that has kept them together throughout the series.

So the flashback scene ends and we hope to god, we hope that things are different and then BAM! One of the most used tropes in romance is used. Misunderstanding because of loud fireworks, closely followed by, I’m happy with where things are anyways!, with a dash of, I love…the fireworks! For a show that has spent most of its time as a parody of shoujo and romance, it is painfully ironic to see the show cliffhanger in such a fashion. Perhaps that’s the point, as a twist within a twist, as hinted by Chiyo’s laugh and realization, but I still wish they’d have just taken the cake and kissed, from a fanboy perspective.

However, you know what, ending trope or not, it was still a sweet ending that gave one hope to all the shipped couples that came about this season. Instead of ending on some hugely comedic note, we witness a sweet curtain call to all of our main characters, giving hope that eventually, all those misunderstandings will clear up when Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun finally ends.

Now that we’re at the end, here’s your main man’s final impressions, since he left them for me before he left to do [insert dubious activity here]. It will then be followed by my own impressions, which I hope to keep short in compensation! Here goes!

Stilts’ Final Impressions

I started out thinking Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun was a romcom, but it’s not. It’s a comedy with a dash of romance, like Acchi Kocchi with shipteasing instead of fuwa fuwa. Which turned out to be great, because Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun is an excellent comedy, one which was only enhanced by the love-love misunderstandings and hjinks.

Toying with Gender Stereotypes

Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun stands as one of the rare series that is roundly popular with both male and female fans. Or rather, it’s one that seems tailored for both guys and girls. That’s because it toys with gender stereotypes until it’s hard to remember where the originals are. This is a shounen manga with a female main character about a male shoujo mangaka. But their roles/jobs aside, Nozaki and Chiyo aren’t gender subversions themselves—it’s everyone else who is. Mikorin, the true heroine. Yuzuki, the dense, blunt girl. The female prince Kashima, and the shorter guy who doles out comic violence at her, Hori-chan-sempai. Wakamatsu, the genki nice guy who’s constantly thinking about love, though he doesn’t realize it. Everyone is a half-step off from their “proper” (accustomed) roles, which makes the story both feel fresh, and avoids pinning it down by the usual tropes.

Comedic Misunderstandings

Another thing Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun does really well is comedic misunderstandings. This was especially clear early on, when Nozaki completely misunderstanding Chiyo’s feelings should have been aggravating, but it was not. I’ll evoke Acchi Kocchi again, because that series also benefits from not being a true romcom. The romance adds to the story, but because we don’t really expect development, quirks like this don’t rub us the wrong way. It’s also an outgrowth of how Chiyo doesn’t really push the issue, which would get frustrating quickly if she did, but since she’s busy self-sabotaging and leaving things as they are, it continues to work. Ditto with Yuzuki x Waka, and Hori-sempai x Kashima. They use dense characters being dense for laughs and it’s not annoying. That’s a hard trick to pull off, judging by how many stories founder on those rocks.

Reaction Faces

One of the things I love about comedy in anime is the reaction faces, and Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun’s are top tier! I could do an entirely compilation of Chiyo’s reaction faces alone; they’re everywhere. Take a stroll back through our collection of screen caps and you’ll see what I mean. It’s a simple thing, but it made me laugh every time. Mostly because…

Shiptease Galore

I’ve spent a lot of time alluding to the romantic aspect. What I like is how it enhances the story, while teasing at resolutions while never demanding them. It does this through drawing us closer to the characters and making us care about them. I compare this to pure comedies like Danshi Koukousei no Nichijou—a superb comedy, but because they never really draw us into the characters and give us reason to love them, it lives or dies by its jokes. And its jokes were usually great! But I can’t really remember the character’s names anymore, whereas with Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun, I doubt I’ll ever forget.

These characters are more than just vehicles for comedy—they’re living, breathing, developed characters who just happen to be quirky and hilarious. That makes me care about them more, which in turn makes the laughs better and the shipteasing sting so good. Add into that how the characters are imbued with real depth—Hori-chan-sempai’s pride and respect for Kashima’s acting comes to mind—and the characters draw us into the comedy all the more.

Looking Back, Looking Ahead

Since I’m off galavanting around the world while Zanibas writes the rest of this post (thanks Zani!), I won’t get to find out if the series ended with a troll ending or not for another week. (And I won’t be thinking about it at all until I return, because gah, I want to know!) But I can safely say that this is one of my favorite comedies of the year, and I’m glad I got to spend a season talking about it with all of you. Thanks for helping with the screen caps Zani—and encouraging me to pick the series up—thanks everyone else for reading and commenting, and I’ll see you again next season.

Zanibas’ Final Impressions

When I wrote the preview for this series, I was largely unaware of what to expect. The credentials didn’t look that amazing, the promotional video wasn’t anything great, but hey, I’ll check it out and see if it was any good. I am glad to say that I was blown away by the first few episodes, as a huge gust of fresh material brought life to a dying art of laughs and love. It teased us with couples that we know are canon, but have to wait out to see it actually happened. It created sweet scenarios where the characters would each become likeable in their own way, keeping a balanced focus on the entire cast instead of our main couple. It gave us such amusing art and and comedic scenes that even if you didn’t find it laugh out loud, hopefully you found yourself smiling on the inside due to all the silly things these characters inflict on themselves. Above all else though, it gave us something new, something that hasn’t really been treaded on much, and it did it well. That’s why people talk about it in anime clubs. That’s why both guys and girls can talk about this show excitedly. That’s why people both new to romantic comedies and veterans alike could find something in this show to enjoy. It was new, and broke away from the all-too-treaded paths that shoujo and romantic comedies like to walk. While not ever show can be a parody from here on out, Gekkan Shoujo gives us an excellent example of what not to do in Shoujo, as well as what TO do in a romantic comedy. Tease enough, but don’t make it overt. Make jokes based on cleverness rather than ecchi. Don’t put all your story eggs with one or two characters. By doing this, Gekkan Shoujo has showed not only the importance of originality, but also of balance, both of which are critical in making a world that can appeal to and keep a larger audience. I hope with this show, along with LOVE STAGE!! and Bokura wa Minna Kawaisou, we can see more effort put into romantic comedies–the genre is far from being exhausted.

Thank you dear reader for following along with this series to the very end–it was a blast watching this show and capping it for Stilts! Unfortunately, tomorrow will be my last post (with a terrible triple-post of Hanayamata), so this is also one of my last goodbyes to you guys before I take a sabbatical until at least Spring 2015. It’s been a pleasure to write this finale for you guys, and I hope to see some of you soon if and when season two comes out, or when another great romantic comedy comes out, whichever comes first!

Full-length images: 20.



  1. I’m so happy for the work Dogakobo put into adapting Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun for the small screen. They even sneaked this into the ending credits… Show Spoiler ▼

    Thank you for producing the original work, Tsubaki Izumi-san! Thank you again, Dogakobo! Thank you for blogging this series, Stilts, Zanibas, and Random Curiosity!

  2. I’m so sad it’s over, definitely read the manga if you enjoy anime. And should check out ch48, because unfortunately they cutted some hilarious and sweet scenes from Nozaki’s and Sakura’s first meeting.

  3. They changed the context of Chiyo and Nozaki’s first meeting in the manga.

    Show Spoiler ▼

    1. I know it would be better to not read spoilers before reading the manga, but I must thank you for it. I thought I was thinking too much that Show Spoiler ▼

      , but this clarifies it (-^o^-). Okay, no more reading spoilers now!

  4. The manga’s still going and has enough unadapted material already for a second season. The sales figures have also been pretty high in Japan, so hopefully we’ll see a season 2.

    As for romantic progress, unfortunately, Tsubaki Izumi is good at dragging it out without any major progress beyond teasing. I’m willing to bet the manga will end with a timeskip where Chiyo is shown still helping Nozaki in an apartment, with no apparent progess in their relationship.

    Then their kids walk in. =p

    Ruri Random
  5. I love this anime! Sad that it ended! Following the manga currently.

    My favourite character in the series is Seo Yuzuki, as well as my pairing of her with Wakamatsu. As much as I want to claim her as mai waifu, she is better off with Wakamatsu.

  6. This last episode surpassed my expectation – more shiptease than the whole manga ever did. Comedy is nice and all but it is the relationships that make this such a likeable series.
    A bit sad that this has ended, but hey, at least the manga is going strongly – and hopefully a season season is coming soon.
    Anyway, regarding the change from the manga:
    Show Spoiler ▼

  7. That fireworks non-confession. Poor Chiyo-chan. ToT

    But seeing how she used to wear one ribbon at the back of her head, just like Mamiko. That must mean Nozaki has subconsciously made Mamiko as his “best girl” without realizing it. Chiyo-chan you still have a chance. 😀

    Haven’t laughed this much since Danshi Koukousei no Nichijou (aka the Funniest Show Not Covered By Random Curiosity 🙂 )

    Season 2 please. 😀

  8. https://randomc.net/image/Gekkan%20Shoujo%20Nozaki-kun/Gekkan%20Shoujo%20Nozaki-kun%20-%2012%20-%20Large%2002.jpg

    Chiyo really pulls off the beady eyes look well. Like her reactions, I just can’t get enough of it. There were so many awesome scenes. Some of my favorites would have to be the bunch of girls surrounding Mamikoshiba and Kashima like a pack of hungry wolves,


    and the blushing Yuzuki,


    Also on of the best lines from this episode for me is this:


    Nozaki: And the woman heading this way will probably make your life miserable.

    Also yeah while it was a bittersweet season finale for Chiyo, It’s nice to see her laughing in the end, even if it wasn’t the reply from Nozaki she expected. I think for her Nozaki being unexpected, and sometimes maybe unbearable, is who he really is and despite all that Nozaki puts her through she doesn’t mind since she loves him that much. Also gotta say Chiyo looks just as good when she still had a single ribbon.


    This really needs a second season!

    1. Too bad this is the only screen time Miyako-sensei gets in this episode, but this has got to be one of her prettiest looks. She’s definitely my favorite girl that’s not in the main cast.

  9. You know that boy that they focus on for a few seconds. The one in the school uniform that stops and stares in the direction of the camera. He apparently is in the manga as Nozaki’s younger brother; the two man and woman walking a little ahead of him are their parents (the father looks like a slightly older Nozaki with a mustache). Apparently the brother plays a role later on in the manga so this may be a hint of a season 2.

  10. Damn, I really am kind of sad that it’s ending.

    Because I wholeheartedly enjoyed this show. It wasn’t even really on my radar, starting the season, but it ended up becoming its surprise hit. The execution, the writing, the animation, all of it was excellent. The comedy was perfectly timed, it was kept fresh thoughout and it managed to create a thoroughly memorable cast. Just looking back at the flashback moments in this episode made me laugh, because I still remember all those jokes. I love every single one of these guys and gals (well, besides, Maeno) and it’s rare that a show’s cast manages to make me feel that way. Hell, this became one of my favourite shows this year so far, and it’s easily the best comedy.

    Farewell, Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun, you will be missed. Time to go read the manga, I suppose.

    Also, I hope Chiyo’s VA gets more roles. I like her voice.

    1. Nishi Asuka was actually Yusa Emi’s best friend Rika in Hataraku Maou-sama, Shinobu in Kiniro Mosaic, and Ursula in Moretsu Pirates. Admittedly I didn’t know she was these characters until I saw Nishi-san’s resume. While she’s had mostly side character roles, the fact that she was Shinobu and Rika means she can diversify a bit, and she happened to be in 3 anime series that I like(4 when you add Nozaki-kun). It might be just me too but she sounds different as Shinobu and as Chiyo, but manages to make both characters sound cutely endearing.

      1. Actually, Chiyo’s voice is provided by Ari Ozawa. Asuka Nishi voiced her in the Drama CD.


        Hiroki Yasumoto was Nozaki
        KENN was Mikorin
        Junji Majima was Hori-chan-sempai
        Chie Matsuura was Kashima-kun
        Daisuke Namikawa was both Waka and Suzuki-kun
        Yukari Tamura was Mamiko
        and Takahiro Mizushima was TOMODAAAAA!!!!

        Only Miyuki Sawashiro was kept in the transition from drama CD to anime

      2. Oh man, I stand corrected. Thanks for the correction. Nishi Asuka’s name came first when I was checking so I went from there. Sorry for the confusion. I checked again and Ozawa Ari really had very few roles. So yeah I share the sentiment that she should get more offers.

  11. It’s not really an overused cliche in romance manga. In normal romance manga, the cliche is that the guy fails to hear the confession over the fireworks, but in GSNK Nozaki just fails to empathize correctly at the crucial moments, just as he had throughout the whole season. So it’s more of a GSNK cliche than a romance manga cliche.

    1. No, actually…

      Chiyo only said the very last line 「好きです。」 which is basically just “I like [omitted]”. In other words, she provided zero context as to what she was talking about. Since they were watching fireworks at the time, Nozaki naturally assumed that she was referring to the fireworks.

      Now if she had prefaced that with 「野崎くんが…」 or 「野崎くんのことが…], then there would have been no ambiguity. Alas, she only thought that part instead of actually saying it.

  12. I’ve always liked pairings in TV shows that are deeply implied, rather than out and proud (at least until the conclusion of the story). This show has that in spades, and is one of the reasons why I like it.

  13. Chiyo is teh cutestest. …est.

    Unfortunately, tomorrow will be my last post


    before I take a sabbatical until at least Spring 2014.

    Oh. Phew. Don’t scare me like that! Although I assume you mean Spring 2015.

  14. I just realized that the Valentine’s portion also removed the part in the manga where Mikiron doesn’t like V-Day because it’s also his birthday and the only presents he gets, from both guys and girls, are chocolate.

  15. That was such a nice ending, and surprisingly satisfying considering it was a “life goes on” sort of ending. All it did was make me REALLY miss all the characters already. A great cast, solid animation and a nice soundtrack (plus that catchy OP). This has been a great ride. Season 2 please.

    1. and oh yeah… SEASON 2 PLEASE. anime seasons every year needs this kind of comedy anime to be perfect. and also there are lots of chapter in manga not adapted/covered which would be enough for source material.

      The Last Idiot
  16. I think a second season is pretty much a given. The first BD of the series is ranked SIXTH in the overall DVD/BD ranking on the Amazon Japan (not on the anime ranking, the general one). Right now, it’s higher than SAO 2 (which, okay, comes out a week later but it’s still considered a selling powerhouse, and yet it’s 128th in the general ranking right now)… So in the end it will probably turn out to be the third most profitable show of the season after the aforementioned SAO 2 and Free Eternal Summer.

    1. Unfortunately, because it’s a 4-koma manga the chapters they used for episodes are all over the place and some bits and scraps inside chapters are left too (shame because some were funny gags). I found on MAL a list:
      Episode 1: Chapters 1 and 2.
      Episode 2: Chapters 3, 4 and start of chapter 5.
      Episode 3: Chapters 5, 6 and 10.
      Episode 4: Chapters 8 and 22.
      Episode 5: Chapters 7, 9 and 15.
      Episode 6: Chapters 14 and 20, some of chapter 11.
      Episode 7: Chapters 12 and 19.
      Episode 8: Chapters 16 and 36, tiny bit of chapter 24.
      Episode 9: Chapters 17 and 18, tiny bits of chapters 13 and 26.
      Episode 10: Chapters 23 and 30, some of 25.
      Episode 11: Tiny bit of chapter 21, chapters 31, some parts of 39 and 40.

      And from me Episode 12: Chapters 28 (not all), 38 & 48 (not all, changed a bit)

      I’m rather disappointed with adaptation of chapter 48, because it left an important information & a scene with gate was funnier. But oh well, they wanted the anime appeared as more romantic at the end than it really is. Sequence with fireworks is original anime one.

  17. Wonderful end to my favourite series of the season! Initially, it was Aldnoah Zero and GSNK that got me pumped for the weekends, but only GSNK prevailed in its awesomeness till the end!

    On a side note, WHAT HAPPENED TO OKADA KUN!?!

    1. I read the bit about Okada-kun in the manga and as far as I know his story was never picked up again. Poor kid, hah hah… ! Maybe he’ll show up later on, a complete mess because of his childhood trauma. Who knows where the truck ended up.

  18. Am I the only one who thinks that in the last scene in the anime there is more than meets the eye? I am under the impression that Nozaki understood what Sakura meant, but did not want to go out of his way to accept her confession. So it ended in a Nozaki-style confession – there is also the part where he eats her apple in the anime, or lifts her up in that game, in the manga – let’s face it, he draws manga for a living so he must be an expert on what women think and definitely have a hunch of what Sakura feels! He just likes toying with her a little bit 🙂 Anyone else who thinks like me?

    1. No, he’s dense as a rock. Because other way it means he cheats whole 12 episodes and altered his personality even for the viewers. He can be quite observant about others’ relationships but it doesn’t apply to him. Well, no matter what we mutter about frendzone or such it’s partially Chiyo’s fault she hasn’t been clear about her feelings. Maybe saying to any other boy that she’s a fan would work but unfortunately Nozaki is an accomplished author, so he could misunderstood it. We can only believe he knows about her feelings if we assume that everybody from opposite sex wants to/can interact with us only romantically. Clearly Nozaki doesn’t believe so.

      Your interpretation is coloured by your expectations about popular romantic tropes, IMHO. But it isn’t a romantic comedy but rather a comedy about stereotyping romance & genders. Unfortunately, the last – anime only – scene plays too straight the tropes and because of that changes atmosphere and makes from the last half of episode romcom, which the anime/manga never was.

  19. To those curious as to how Nozaki got his pen name, Yumeno Sakiko, it’s derived from his actual name with some clever changes.

    -Umetarou Nozaki
    -Ume Nozaki(remove male suffix -tarou)
    -Umeno Zaki(move the ‘no’)
    -Umeno Zakiko(add female suffix -ko)
    -Yumeno Sakiko

  20. Totally loved every bit of this series. Totally hoping for season 2 sometime soon. I checked the manga and it seems there are like less than 15 chapters translated from the point where the anime ended which probably means there isn’t enough source material(?)

    Ok, now off I go to read the manga!

    The Story You Don't Know
  21. Didn’t expect to like this as much as I did but damn, I don’t think there was a moment where I wasn’t smiling. And I have to give credit for episode 11’s preview along with this ending – it didn’t happen until the very end when there were literary about 50 seconds remaining of the episode and it was probably something most people were curious about after last ep’s preview.

    Naturally, it didn’t happen and it’s probably better this way for the sake of the show’s entertainment. However, I’m thinking…if Nozaki & Sakura would really become a couple, would that be a guarantee that a 2nd season would be less entertaining? It’s probably safer to make romantic progression(sorry Sakura!) but I’m thinking that this series could make couples hilarious as well, just that there would inevitably be a bit more sweet moments too. That’d need more work though, since it’d mean that the series would have to leave it’s comfort zone and make jokes revolving around couples. Harder to do at the risk of not being as funny but on the other hand, it could feel fresh in that it wouldn’t re-use most gags it did in this 1st season. Of course, this is just me rambling & speculating, the 2nd season is a must-watch either way!

  22. I want to say this is the funniest shoujo I’ve watched since Ouran Host Club but ofc I can’t since this isn’t shoujo that said I did enjoy it in the way I enjoyed Ouran so many years back.
    A+ show will watch season 2 if it ever comes but for now i’ma read the manga!

  23. Really enjoyed this one!
    Somehow the intro of the opening theme (that trumpet-ish part) reminds me of Excel Saga 😛
    Memorable characters.

    Somehow it just seems like shoujo is where the best laughs are, lol.

    Would be nice if theres a season 2.

  24. I am absolutely positive there is a second season on its way. Not only did they drop the telltale hint of displaying characters we don’t know in the epilogue, but the anime hasn’t gotten to even half of Tsubaki-sensei’s good material.
    I was so excited when I saw the Summer 2014 anime listings. I feel like every time I check them, I find out a manga I love is being turned into an anime. Tsubaki-sensei is not only a genius at dragging out the romance in a not frustrating way, but also at creating lovable, dense, and slightly crazy characters you can’t help but love. Like in their currently ongoing work “Oresama Teacher”. This GSN anime had more romance in it than the manga. It’s like they pulled out all the romantic, dokidoki parts and slapped ’em together nice and crafty.
    In episode 10 as they were sqordfighting I started thinking about how amazing it would be if they turned Oresama Teacher into an anime. The action! The laughs! The mystery! (and the understated romance(s))
    Anyways, looking forward to season 2 soon!

    Btw Spring 2015 girls can expect Uta no Prince-sama 3000%!!!!!


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