Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun: Episode 1 – “This Love… Is Being Turned Into a Shojo Manga.”

Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun is based on a four-panel web manga written and illustrated by Izumi Tsubaki. The anime is produced by Dogakobo, and is directed by Mitsue Yamazaki. As of this writing, Crunchyroll holds the North American streaming license for the series.

Sakura Chiyo has a crush on her classmate, Nozaki Umetaro. When she goes to confess her feelings to him, she becomes so flustered she gets out that she’s always been his fan. After a moment, he gives her his autograph; however, instead of signing his name, he signs it as “Yumeno Sakiko.” When she says that’s not what she meant and that what she meant to say is that she always wants to be with him, he asks her to come with him to his place.

Sakura goes with Nozaki to his place, and learns that he’s an author of shojo manga. She also figures out that “Yumeno Sakiko” is his pen name, and that she’s seen his work in the monthly shojo manga magazine that she reads. Nozaki asks Sakura to help him out with the art; he also later reveals that he’s been keeping an eye on her, because he’d seen the work she’d done on a poster at school. She also comes to learn that nobody else at school knows what he does; while he’s tried telling others, they don’t believe him.

As Sakura works with Nozaki, he starts being inspired by some of the things she says. It even gets to a point where he has her help him do some research for something he wants to include in the manga. The results ended up being rather comical at times.

The more Sakura helps Nozaki, she learns that he hasn’t experienced his first love yet, but that he’s given quite a bit of love advice to girls when they ask. When Nozaki asks Sakura who she likes, she describes what happened between the two of them; unfortunately, Nozaki appears to be too dense to figure it out and wonders what’s so good about a guy like that.

Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun is definitely meant to be a light-hearted comedy, and so far, it appears to be working. To me, the funniest part of the series is the fact that Nozaki writes a shojo manga series and gives love advice to girls, yet he hasn’t actually experienced his first love and is too dense to figure out that Sakura likes him. But these traits just add to Nozaki’s charm.

Since this is comedic in nature, we get to see the visuals of Sakura internalizing her thoughts; in some respects, it kind of made me think of Yukino in His and Her Circumstances. Obviously, they have different personalities, but the comedic visualization of their thoughts is rather similar.

The animation is pretty decent for this series. While it may not be bringing anything new to the table, I could still tell the animators went to a lot of effort with what they were doing in Episode One. Hopefully this style will continue throughout the series.

Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun is off to a good start. I like the main characters and how they interact with each other, the story is keeping my interest, and the humor is very enjoyable. I’m looking forward to watching Episode Two in order to see where the story will go next.

Additional posts about Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun:

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