Genre: Drama, Comedy, Romance
Credits: 2007 Tomoko Ninomiya, Kenichi Kasai, Asmik-Ace Entertainment, Dentsu Inc., Fuji TV, GENCO, Kodansha, Nodame Cantabile Production Team, Sony Music Entertainment
Manga and Art Books
MusicToys and Games
Amazon.com Editorial/Product Description:
The son of a famous pianist, music student Shinichi Chiaki dreams of studying abroad and becoming a conductor like his mentor. Unfortunately, his fear of flying grounds his lofty plans! As he watches other classmates achieve what he has always wanted, Shinichi wonders if he should quit music altogether.
Then one day he meets fellow student Megumi Noda, also known as Nodame. This oddball girl cannot cook, clean, or even read a music score, but she can play the piano in incomparable Cantabile style. And she teaches Chiaki something that he has forgotten: to enjoy his music, no matter where he is.
(24 episodes as of this writing. Still ongoing.)
This is like the Initial D for Music Enthusiasts >>> by skysenshi (09.08.2009)
I wasn't much impressed with Nodame Cantabile's artwork so I didn't know what to expect when I first started watching it. I was happy, however, with how easy it was to relate to the characters, not just because I came from a family of musicians but also because they were funny, quirky and can generally make fun of themselves.
Like any good anime, the characters are the driving force behind Nodame. The protagonist, Nodame, is...well, filthy. Hehe. I have never seen a character as deliberately unhygienic as her. Who would have thought that she was actually based on a real human being of the same name? Nodame embodies every insecurity and uncertainty that many college students seem to go through when they're not sure about their future. Male protagonist Shinichi Chiaki, on the other hand, is confident, dashing, brilliant. Though it is shoujo manga formula to put these two together in a title, I was actually looking forward to how things would play out for their wacky love-hate relationship (Nodame does all the loving, Chiaki does all the hating even though he ends up looking after her at the end of every episode). There are many other notable supporting characters in Nodame but I wasn't really that keen on remembering their names. I was really just focused on the two leads, which was a surprise since I usually have a favorite in the supporting players.
I suppose we can thank the mangaka, Tomoko Ninomiya, for making sure that Nodame and Chiaki are a balanced set. Shoujo stories are usually just focused on the female hero, but it's not the case here. While Nodame, accustomed to her roguish piano-playing ways, struggles to bridge her unpolished talent and the conventions of classical music, Shinichi is torn between continuing his piano studies -- where he already excels -- and pursuing his dream of becoming a conductor.
What I liked best about this is the research that the mangaka poured into it. I thought that she had an extensive musical background! My sister (who plays the violin) and I (used to do vocals) couldn't get enough of the story, especially since the technical stuff are closely intertwined with the characters' hilarious antics. My sister saw the live-action version, though.
I find the ending a bit anti-climactic, so I went ahead and looked for the manga. I'm still currently reading it and have not even reached the part where the anime ends.
Individual Rating: Art/Animation 7; Story 10; Characters 9; Sounds 10