The anime adaptation Monthly Nozaki-kun for girls lasted only 12 episodes and aired in the summer of 2014 from July to September. However, the manga is still ongoing with 134 chapters and counting. It has been published in the manga magazine Gangan Online for eleven years – and it’s still going strong. With eight years of new material since the anime’s release, one has to wonder if the manga is still worth getting into.
With many chapters exploring character relationships established in the anime adaptation’s restrictive runtime, and years of content developing the main characters, there’s plenty of curiosity as to whether it’s worth keeping up Monthly Nozaki-kun for girls.
The quirky siblings of the main characters
No main characters were introduced to the school of main characters, which is ultimately for the best, as it might mess up the intimate relationship that already exists between the existing cast members. Many writers fall into the trap of expanding their cast without properly fleshing out these additional characters, but thankfully, writer Izumi Tsubaki found the best solution: siblings.
All of the new main characters introduced are siblings of existing characters in the main cast, and all turn out to be just as endearingly quirky as the people they are related to. Mayu Nozaki is lazy to an almost impressive degree, while Yumeko Nozaki is the complete opposite of her brothers. She is an adorable bundle of joy who loves shojo manga and never seems to be drawn in an undeformed state. Interestingly, she was originally intended to be the protagonist of the series, but it didn’t work out and the series focused on her brother instead.
Towa Sakura is a bit more serious than his older sister, but he soon proves to be just as adorably gullible as her, and ends up becoming very attached to Nozaki’s cooking – just like his sister. Even more airy than her older sister, Rei Kashima has a penchant for dispatching two people who come into view except, oddly enough, Sakura and Nozaki, who she mistakes for a child and a teacher, respectively.
Finally, there is Ryousuke Seo, Seo’s older brother. Unlike his sister, he is much more level-headed and very reliable. But like the rest of the cast, he still has a penchant for coming up with and sometimes causing ridiculous misunderstandings, especially when it comes to his own love life.
Actual progression between the cast’s romantic relationships
Monthly Nozaki-kun for girls has always been more comedy than romance, and many longtime fans have long since given up seeing progress on their favorite ships in the series. Things finally seem to be changing, however, and many of the longstanding misconceptions are beginning to be cleared up. Wakamatsu finally knows who Lorelei really is, and Hori has sort of confessed to Kashima.
Recently, a couple who were only teased in the manga have finally made big strides in the form of an actual, serious confession. This surprised many fans as the development of the other couples was left up in the air. It surprised them so much that many have reviewed the chapter to find possible misunderstandings they missed; or expect the next chapter to introduce a new gag that could get in the way of the couple’s progress.
Finally, there’s Nozaki and Sakura. Unlike the other couples, the progression between these two was very slow and subtle. Sakura is still as in love with Nozaki as ever, and the latter is still as stoic and clueless as ever, but later chapters have hinted that Nozaki might start reciprocating Sakura’s feelings for him. In one chapter, after posing as a classmate, Nozaki asks Sakura if there is a boy sitting in front of her. Sakura replies that it is indeed a girl. Nozaki feels relieved by this fact, leaving a somewhat stunned Sakura and Mikoshiba.
In another chapter, Nozaki creates an adorable mascot version of Sakura while blogging on a shojo magazine website. While his posts initially focused on his younger brother, each post shifted more and more towards Sakura until her adorable mascot self took over the blog entirely. Only later does Nozaki notice this and he is at a loss for words when he notices it. As with Nozaki himself, these moments are quiet and subtle, but a sure sign that things are starting to change on his side. As for Mikoshiba, time will tell if he will eventually find a match himself.
The monthly Nozaki-kun for girls is funnier than ever
It’s still as fun as ever
One thing that lasted Monthly Nozaki-kun for girlss fandom that has been going strong since the end of the anime is how really funny it is. The gags are still as crazy and ridiculous as ever. From clever use of shojo clichés and tropes to silly misunderstandings, the lead actress consistently proves to be an entertaining crew. It’s really impressive how, despite the show’s seemingly mundane setting, Tsubaki never runs out of perfect comedic material for every situation.
The manga’s 4-coma format ensures that almost every page has a punch line, making it almost impossible not to smile after reading through each chapter. Though many of the running gags are still ubiquitous, like Hori beating up Kashima or instantly falling asleep for Wakamatsu every time he hears Lorelei sing, the jokes somehow never last beyond their greeting. And Tsubaki, the comic genius that she is, always manages to find a way to somehow escalate some of those gags to even greater comedic heights.
A lot of material has been added since the first – and so far only – season of Monthly Nozaki-kun for girls completed. In fact, it wouldn’t be a surprise if the amount of material now available was enough two more seasons. With new, likable characters, decent progression between the main couples, and an endless barrage of comedic gold, these chapters are definitely worth adapting into an animated format.