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01 April 2009 @ 04:51 am
Seven Reasons Why Nodame Cantabile is the Best Kind of Crack  

It's like listening to classical music on acid.
But while snuggling a puppy and eating a cupcake!
That's how happy it makes you!



Ah, Nodame Cantabile! How can I describe my love for you? After first falling in love with Asian dramas through Hana Yori Dango, Nodame Cantabile was the first show that really knocked my socks off and showed me that I hadn't reached the pinnacle of my drama love. I've been both brought to tears and to cackling laughter by this show. It's more of a straight comedy than anything else I've watched and yet all the insanity works (and works well) because this show made me care about its characters so very much. Plus, the writing just consistently impressed me and made the whole thing feel so fresh and original.

To summarize, Nodame Cantabile is about the quirky, odd couple relationship between Noda Megumi and Chiaki Shinichi. Nodame, as she's called, is an incredibly talented but free-spirited pianist, preferring to compose little ditties about farting for her future career as a kindergarten teacher. Chiaki is an unyielding, highly critical perfectionist, already an accomplished pianist but with his sights really set on conducting. Twin crippling phobias, due to a childhood emergency crash landing and a subsequent near drowning, keep him grounded in Japan. As you can probably guess, they have quite an impact on the each others' lives. :)

1. Nodame = Cutest Eccentric Prodigy Ever Y/Y?

I just love Nodame herself. Now, a lot of heroines in dramas are adorable, plucky, independent women who go against the grain. However, I haven't yet seen any quite as actually crazy as Nodame. She's a packrat who lives surrounded by mountains of garbage. She steals other people's food as soon as they turn their backs. She gets so obsessed that she doesn't bother to sleep or shower for days. She's also an amazingly talented musician who can play anything by ear. Nodame is chaotic and unpredictable and you can't help but love her for being totally whacked.

2. This guy's face. So pretty. So hilarious.

Oh, Chiaki. As the relatively less odd half of a very odd couple, Chiaki is often the straight man to other people's (especially Nodame's) antics. His face generally switches between expressions of shock, incredulity, I'M GOING TO HAVE TO KILL YOU NOW, and various facial tics that being surrounded by these people have created. But I like that Chiaki really has as many eccentricities and flaws as the other characters. He's can be arrogant, prone to OMGKILLFACE, insensitive and exacting. In fact in several episodes, Chiaki acts as "the bad guy" of the plot. But he comes across harsher than he really is. Also, you may have already noticed, he's gorgeous. And I'm nominating him for "Most Successful Translation of Anime/Manga Hair to Real Life". It's fabulous.

3. This is not a drama about normal people.




I just love all the characters, with their various talents and eccentricities. This drama is chock full of interesting people, so I only listed my pictured my four favorite secondary characters. Trust me, there's more. From the top:
Mine Ryuutaro, (electric) violinist and champion of expressing music through your whole body. Just look at the hair. OMG HE'S MY FAVORITE!
Masumi-chan, a timpani player also known for his hair. Also, his big gay crush on Chiaki. Can you blame him?
Kiyora Miki, an excellent violinist and Concert Mistress, a dream right-hand woman for any conductor. Seems a bit on the cool side at first but isn't shy about getting awesomely drunk.
Sakura Saku, a tiny girl who often gets mistaken for a elementary school kid yet plays the huge contrabass. Because she thinks it's cooler than a violin. Solid reasoning.

4. The show isn't constrained by reality.

Honestly, it's madness in the best way. This drama uses the slapsticky visual conventions of anime/manga more than any other I've seen and actually pulls it off! I didn't think I'd ever like that! Also, everyone makes the BEST FACES all the time. If you want a show with wacky hijinks, this is the one for you! Between weird fantasy sequences, using an extremely fake plastic plane to simulate a plane crash and just plain outlandish people, there's enough to satisfy any fan of crackiness and WTFery.

5. The music will make you seriously verklempt.

The music of Nodame Cantabile is just so powerful and moving, from watching a solitary figure alone at the piano or a sweeping orchestra in concert. Whether you're a fan of classical musical or not, the characters love what they do so much and are so invested in the piece, it creates a real emotional connection to whatever they're playing. The musical sequences have often brought me to the point of tears, not just because they're often the culmination of a plot but because they're so damn beautiful! Plus, now I find myself humming things like the melody of "Montagues and Capulets" from the Romeo and Juliet ballet. Have I seen the ballet? No, but I've seen Nodame Cantabile.

6. Everyone is so BFF!

I just adore that this drama focuses so much on all the interactions between our group of weirdos. Everyone gets their little moments together and hilarity is usually the result. It's fun that you can have any two given characters in a scene and have there be something interesting there. But I have a special place in my heart for whenever some combination of Mine, Masumi, Nodame and Chiaki hang out. They have hijinks. *smishes them*

7. Crazy people need love too!

When I started off this drama, I was struck at first by how unromantic it was. Not that I didn't think that Nodame and Chiaki were absolutely adorable, it was just that Nodame and Chiaki aren't developed like your average couple. Chiaki can be tough on her, but he pretty much immediately takes up the charge of Nodame's domestic life. Nodame is instantly smitten with Chiaki but she has a hard time being serious (and taken seriously) about anything. In every moment I watched, it slowly built up just how great they are for each other. At its heart, Nodame Cantabile is about how someone can come into your life and change everything. There really isn't anything more central to show than the relationship of these two and it's such a pleasure to watch.


As I mentioned in my previous pimping posts, if you're interested in downloading this or any other Asian drama, you should go join jdramas. It's an awesome community that's provided me with many hours of entertainment. If you prefer there's also a lot of torrents floating around, many of which can be found on D-Addicts.

I hope you enjoyed the picspam! Thanks for watching, folks! Leave a comment for your waitress! ;)
 
 
Current Mood: satisfiedsatisfied
Current Music: Piano Sonata #16 in A minor, D845 - 1st Movement - Amir Kats
 
 
 
kelene on April 1st, 2009 09:39 am (UTC)
Watching this show is like smoking the good crack and overdosing on great music all at the same time. ♥♥♥ Wonderful picspam!
Top: FH: Behold the power of a smooth chest!topazera on April 1st, 2009 08:23 pm (UTC)
Watching this show is like smoking the good crack and overdosing on great music all at the same time.

Ha, yes! You've summed it up perfectly in one sentence! How can anyone resist that potent combo?

Thanks for commenting! :D
i tried my best to leave this all on your machinemy_maverick on April 1st, 2009 10:19 am (UTC)
This is fabulous! ♥ It's such a fantastic series, they're all so kooky but lovable.
Top: VM: Drown metopazera on April 1st, 2009 08:26 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I love it so much, I knew I needed to do a little pictorial tribute. I just look at pictures of their faces and laugh. XD
a chuisle mo chroífrostedpopcorn on April 1st, 2009 10:30 am (UTC)
Gyaboooooooooo!

I fucking LOVE Nodame and this picspam is so epic, I will use it to hassle even more friends to watch it. :D

Lovely, lovely picspam.. this series is so brilliant, I cried all the time because it was hilarious or beautiful.
Top: BSG: just put down 'badass'topazera on April 1st, 2009 08:32 pm (UTC)
I fucking LOVE Nodame and this picspam is so epic, I will use it to hassle even more friends to watch it. :D
HAHAHA, yesss. That's always my ultimate goal. Though it seems like everyone who knows dramas has long ago been convinced to watch Nodame, we will not rest until everyone has seen it!

Lovely, lovely picspam.. this series is so brilliant, I cried all the time because it was hilarious or beautiful.
Aw, thank you so much! I had the same reaction. For something that so hilarious, it was so much more moving than I first expected. ♥
annie: CA - fabulous <3latteea on April 1st, 2009 10:44 am (UTC)
♥ This picspam is awesome!
Top: FNL: (sunlit) but so elegantlytopazera on April 1st, 2009 08:38 pm (UTC)
Yay, thank you! It was a bit rushed trying to beat the deadline but it came together. Damn, picspammy, you steal so much of my time! :D
<3a_brokenangel on April 1st, 2009 11:28 am (UTC)
I soo odd to rewatch it. thank you so much for doing this. what an awesome picspam/pimp post. CHIAKI-SENPAI *____*
Top: NC: You're the only onetopazera on April 1st, 2009 08:43 pm (UTC)
I think I need to rewatch now too! XD I sort of did to cap it, but now I just want to relive it again.

thank you so much for doing this. what an awesome picspam/pimp post.
You're welcome! That means a lot coming from someone who just did such an epic drama picspam! I have to go comment on that now, I saw it yesterday when I was working trying too finish mine! TAMAKI HIROSHI OMG. :D
thehibiscusthehibiscus on April 1st, 2009 04:33 pm (UTC)
What amazed was the flawless transition from the manga to the live action. When I read the manga, I was seriously shocked because it seemed exactly the same. On a side, do you read the manga? It's at a very crucial moment for both the relationship and Nodame's career. Thanks for the picspam. It was lovely. Oh and there are two movies coming out soon! :D
Top: DW: brush me feel metopazera on April 1st, 2009 08:20 pm (UTC)
What amazed was the flawless transition from the manga to the live action.
Yeah, I've heard that before! I haven't read any of the manga (or actually any manga in years!) but statements like that are really making me want to give it a try! I love the drama so much that I don't think I could bear things were too different.

Thanks for the comment! I'll have to investigate this manga thing soon I think. :D

Oh and there are two movies coming out soon! :D
Eeee, I get so excited thinking about that, I may combust! NODAMEEEE. <3
the falling and rising: chow down; asthefirefliesglassbomb on April 1st, 2009 07:20 pm (UTC)
The Nodame Cantabile manga has recently become one of my favorite manga of ALL TIME. I am so in love with this series and I just started watching the drama with the first episode last weekend, and I was really impressed with how well everything was translated to live action. Everyone was so perfectly cast, I am still amazed. This post has gotten me really excited about watching the rest of the drama!!
Top: TSCC: little [robot] girltopazera on April 1st, 2009 08:58 pm (UTC)
Hee, I've been thinking of going in other direction! I love the drama so much, that I really should go find the manga. I've heard from people that it's a pretty faithful adaption, so hopefully we'll both end up liking the other medium! I'm still amazed that the drama can feel so much like a manga and still work so well.

This post has gotten me really excited about watching the rest of the drama!!
Yes! I'm so happy to hear that. I hope you enjoy it! It's definitely in the running for my very favorite drama of ALL TIME. :D
Morgan: Full Housemojotastic on April 1st, 2009 07:41 pm (UTC)
I think we have had many conversations about how much I love Nodame and how it makes me consistently cry like a baby. THE SPECIALS OMG THE SPECIALS! Seriously though, this picspam is A-Mazing! I might have to pimp this out because this is really why everyone should be watching this show. THE FACES! I was totally sold the first episode when Chiaki made one of his FACCCEESS. The plane crash!

Remember the episode when Chiaki gets obsessed with the kotatsu and like doesn't leave the house but just stays under it? LOL! So funny.

I really feel the need to rewatch this show again. Especially the SPECIALS! I need another good cry I guess? lol!

(PS: I finished Mei-chan no Shitsuji and oh-my-cracky-god. That show! It's so over the top and people are always getting shot or stabbed with sciscors or there's a ~sword duel~. Thank you for bringing this show to my attention.)
Top: HYD: Those crazy kidstopazera on April 1st, 2009 09:40 pm (UTC)
OMG, I finally finished the specials and they were AMAAAAZING. Again, there were many tears. It was all I could've asked for! Now that's how you come back and do a special, take note other dramas.

I might have to pimp this out because this is really why everyone should be watching this show.
I always assume that everyone who knows dramas has seen this one but I'm still dedicated to making sure everyone watches it. XD

THE FACES! I was totally sold the first episode when Chiaki made one of his FACCCEESS.
ME TOOOOO! All of his reactions shots are equally his hilarious (and thankfully he always has a lot to react to). Though I particularly love his face when Nodame is about to go back to a hotel with a man she just met off he street in the first ep. His OMGWHATBITCHSTOLEMYFISH face is classic. XD

Remember the episode when Chiaki gets obsessed with the kotatsu and like doesn't leave the house but just stays under it?
HAHAHA, yes! That's actually the last ep I capped for the spam! I like when he freaks out about it being some crippling blackhole of comfort and throws it out while makes this face:

Oh, Chiaki! Don't even pretend you're actually normal!

I really feel the need to rewatch this show again.
You know, I totally want someone to start a drama watch/rewatch community. I don't know if us independent-minded folk could stick to a schedule but I love rewatching and squeeing anew!

People are always getting shot or stabbed with sciscors or there's a ~sword duel~. Thank you for bringing this show to my attention.
You're welcome, bb! I'm actually watching ep 6 tonight! You know, some people look for plot in their dramas but all I'm looking for is someone getting attacked with a pair of scissors. XD
(no subject) - mojotastic on April 2nd, 2009 06:26 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - topazera on April 3rd, 2009 03:27 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mojotastic on April 3rd, 2009 03:59 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - topazera on April 3rd, 2009 07:04 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mojotastic on April 3rd, 2009 04:28 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - topazera on April 3rd, 2009 07:49 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mojotastic on April 3rd, 2009 08:57 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - topazera on April 6th, 2009 08:02 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mojotastic on April 7th, 2009 03:32 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - topazera on April 9th, 2009 05:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
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(no subject) - topazera on April 9th, 2009 10:00 pm (UTC) (Expand)
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Christina: me- doutzen- I'm waiting to holdfly_meaway on April 1st, 2009 08:07 pm (UTC)
Since someone on my flist watches drama's I figured I'd check out this picspam and I have to say that it looks like it's really really cute!
Top: PD: You've got pollen on your nosetopazera on April 1st, 2009 11:57 pm (UTC)
Aw, thanks for checking it out! I always hope people who aren't familiar with dramas will come take a look. :)

It really is a super cute show; it's just something that makes me happy whenever I watch. If you aren't used to the conventions of anime/manga, the over-the-top slapstick bits and visual style might take a bit of getting used to but it's really pretty charming straightaway. If you ever want to give it a try, it's only 11 episodes long so it's not a huge commitment! :D
anenko: NODAME CANTABILE: straysanenko on April 1st, 2009 09:10 pm (UTC)
I love Nodame Cantabile, and I love this picspam (you always have such gorgeous ones!)

Now, a lot of heroines in dramas are adorable, plucky, independent women who go against the grain. However, I haven't yet seen any quite as actually crazy as Nodame.

I never thought of that, but it's very true. I think that's part of why I love Nodame so much--she'd be zany no matter what, and not just because a certain plotline requires her to be odd.
Top: FH: Brighter than Sunshinetopazera on April 2nd, 2009 12:16 am (UTC)
I love this picspam (you always have such gorgeous ones!)
*blush* Aw, thank you! I'm in the middle of switching monitors and all uncertain about my coloring so that was very nice to hear today!

I think that's part of why I love Nodame so much--she'd be zany no matter what, and not just because a certain plotline requires her to be odd.
I certainly think that's part of her charm. She seems very genuine her strangeness. Also, sadly, I find it all too easy to relate to someone who's obsessive and messy. XD
Heather: Disney: Story Time!padfoot_freak on April 1st, 2009 09:50 pm (UTC)
Oh! This may have to go on my list for Dramas to watch. I'm getting close to the end of my current list, so this will definitely be next. It looks adorable and crack-tastic :D
Top: VM: Dude am I drunk?topazera on April 2nd, 2009 12:06 am (UTC)
Yes, adorable and crack-tastic are just the words to describe it! I'd really recommend this drama to anyone but especially if you like your entertainment to have a touch of the crack. XD

I hope it makes it on to your list! And you like it, if it does! Thanks so much for the comment. ♥
Superfail!: NODAME: Senpai Smilesaliaspiral on April 2nd, 2009 12:34 am (UTC)
NODAME! *draws little hearts all over this picspam* i watched Nodame, and I cannot even bring myself to properly talk about, because i get so overwhelmed with everything i want to say that i just end up flapping my hands and making happy noises.

...it doesnt hurt that Tamaki Hiroshi is FUCKING HOT as Chiaki.

bonus points for the awesome use of verklempt.
Top: NC: You're the only onetopazera on April 2nd, 2009 01:11 am (UTC)
I cannot even bring myself to properly talk about, because i get so overwhelmed with everything i want to say that i just end up flapping my hands and making happy noises.
Ha, that's totally why I finished this picspam four hours after a month-long deadline. I didn't think I could possibly quantify my love for it. I love this drama MORE THAN SENSE OR REASON!

...it doesnt hurt that Tamaki Hiroshi is FUCKING HOT as Chiaki.
This picspam was almost a series of caps of Tamaki Hiroshi's face followed by "NGGH WANT! askjljdhlkjd!" Damn, he's might be the guy I find HOTTEST in my limited experience of drama-watching.

bonus points for the awesome use of verklempt.
Sweet, I get points? I'm always looking for opportunities to bring in the Yiddish. XD
peaches in the creases of a plastic bag: Middleman: !!!!phrenk on April 2nd, 2009 12:37 pm (UTC)
NODAME. YES.

SEVEN REASONS WHY THIS PICSPAM IS AWESOME:

1. It's freaking NODAME CANTABILE.
2. You have captured what I love most about each characters.
3. Especially NODAME, in all her wacky, lovable glory.
4. AND CHIAKI, WITH HIS FACES.
5. AND MINE. Wait, I'm getting off track. BUT STILL, MINE.
6. Your addition at the end, about the romance. YES. How much they grew to NEED each other even before they really LIKED each other. (Nodame LOVED him and worshiped him, but sometimes she definitely didn't see eye to eye with his tight-pants-ed self.)
7. YOU ARE AMAZING. EVERYTHING IS BEAUTIFUL. WIN.
Top: Comics: [HQ & Ivy] Cheap and evil girlstopazera on April 3rd, 2009 05:20 am (UTC)
SEVEN REASONS WHY YOU ARE AWESOME:

1. You made your comment in the form of a list.
2. All seven reasons included CAPSLOCKING which made me feel like this post was VERY EXCITING.
3. As did your Middleman icon!
4. I THINK MY FACE IS NOW ABOUT AS HAPPY AS HIS BECAUSE OF THIS.
5. MINE! You know, his panel was originally three times as long as any of the other secondary characters but I decided that wasn't fair. Also many of the caps were just dedicated to capturing his amazing hair. I MAY HAVE TO GIVE MINE HIS OWN PICSPAM SOMEDAY. I kind of love Eita in the same way I love Toma, just to a lesser degree.
6. You used the word 'tight-pants-ed' to describe Chiaki. XDD
7. I AM SERIOUSLY BLUSHING OVER HERE! THANKS, BB!
(no subject) - rainbow_yarn on April 7th, 2009 12:19 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - topazera on April 8th, 2009 04:10 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - phrenk on April 7th, 2009 11:02 am (UTC) (Expand)
Julia: omg lolturtle_yurippe on April 6th, 2009 06:09 pm (UTC)
I loved this drama, and I love your post. Gotta rewatch before the films come out. If I'm lucky, I can even see them both in a real japanese cinema! >___<

Anyway, I liked that NC isn't one of those romance dramas like HYD. I loved HYD, but sometimes a bit toned down romance is nicer. It makes it... less nerve-wracking to watch?

Anyway, what is verklempt? Sounds like something German, but I don't know this word and I'm a native speaker. (Btw, Chiaki's German was the best of all the drama. xD)
Top: NC: Stalking is caring!topazera on April 6th, 2009 08:11 pm (UTC)
If I'm lucky, I can even see them both in a real japanese cinema!
Oh man, that's so exciting! I couldn't be happier that Nodame is making more movies, the Paris specials were my favorite specials of any drama. :D

I loved HYD, but sometimes a bit toned down romance is nicer. It makes it... less nerve-wracking to watch?
Yeah, I get what you mean. I adore HYD, but watching the second series was almost too painful for me! The angst and struggle was definitely causing me stress. XD

With Nodame, I like that romance is subtle for the audience because it's subtle for the characters. It's a nice slow build. Though Chiaki can only remain in denial for so long. ;)

Anyway, what is verklempt? Sounds like something German, but I don't know this word and I'm a native speaker.
Hee, you have my Jewish grandparents to thank for that influence. "Verklempt" is a Yiddish borrowing of German (of "verklemmt" = emotionally inhibited in a convulsive way; stuck, according to Google) that is used like "choked up with emotion". I think it's a pretty familiar term in my area. ;)

(Btw, Chiaki's German was the best of all the drama. xD)
Good to know! Since I don't speak German (or French!), I really couldn't tell how well they handled all the languages but I love that they included so many! It seems so in character for Chiaki to pull it off.
(no subject) - turtle_yurippe on April 6th, 2009 08:15 pm (UTC) (Expand)
sabbywinksabbywink on April 6th, 2009 07:24 pm (UTC)
i totally agree with on this.nodame cantabile is the best hilarious jdrama ever. the loveable casts, storyline, costume n even its shooting places! i love this drama 4eva!
Top: Amelié: Dreams are delicatetopazera on April 6th, 2009 08:13 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I definitely could have included the costumes (especially when they did the costume orchestra!) and the locations too. Nodame did such a fabulous job across the board!