In this article, I would like to take a look back at some of the nostalgic "Sunday Morning" romantic stories for the "around-thirty" generation.
"Marmalade Boy" is a work by Yoshizumi Wataru that was serialized in "Ribon" from 1992 to 1995. Yoshizumi-sensei is also known for her works such as "Handsome Girl", "Mint na Bokura" and "Ultra Maniac".
Recently, she was in charge of the manga for the drama "Kasouken no Onna," which became a hot topic on Twitter. Fans were overflowing with joy at the sudden collaboration project and the wonderful drawings by Yoshizumi-sensei.
The TV anime aired from March 1994 to September 1995, and was made into a live-action drama in Taiwan in 2001, and into a live-action movie in Japan in 2018 starring Sakurai Hinako and Yoshizawa Ryo.
The story is about a heroine who suddenly finds herself living with a boy, which is a heart-pounding situation! One day, the main character, Koishikawa Miki, a first-year high school student, is told by her parents that they are getting a divorce. Then, to her surprise, they announced that they and Mr. and Mrs. Matsuura, whom they met on a trip to Hawaii, would "exchange" partners and remarry. Although Miki was opposed to the unexpected situation, the six of them, including Yu, the son of the Matsuura's, ended up leading a new life together.
Miki is teased and played by Yu, who has an elusive personality, but she gradually begins to feel attracted to him. As the story unfolds, the readers/viewers must have been thrilled by Yu.
The title "Marmalade Boy" refers to Yu, and there is a scene in the story where Miki compares Yu to marmalade, saying, "Actually it has some bitterness, but everyone is deceived by its sweetness and doesn't realize it." It's true that when a boy's behavior and casual remarks are said with such a sweet face, you can't help but be attracted to him...
I also remember reading the story as a child, thinking that it was a mature manga, with the flirting between the two after they started dating, and the secret romance between Miki's best friend, Meiko, and her teacher.
The sequel, "Marmalade Boy little", is also not to be missed. It is set 13 years after "Marmalade Boy" and tells the story of the younger sister and brother of Miki and Yu. The characters from the first book, including Miki and Yu, are now adults, and as a reader from that time, I was moved and happy to see them again. Of course, the main characters of this work, Rikka and Saku, are also going to develop in a way that is typical of "Marmalade Boy", and this work is full of heart-pounding pieces.
"Neighborhood Story" was broadcast from September 1995 to September 1996 as a follow-up to the TV anime "Marmalade Boy". This is a work by Yazawa Ai, known for "Tenshi Nanka Ja Nai", "Kagen no Tsuki", "NANA", and others. It was serialized in "Ribon" from 1995 to 1997.
The main character, Koda Mikako, is a high school student who is studying fashion design and is striving to become a designer and create her own brand in the future. The story is about her childhood friend, Yamaguchi Tsutomu, who lives in the same apartment building as her, and the other members of the club who are full of uniqueness, and how they enjoy their youths, their dreams and love life.
Although she is a high school student, Mikako's dedication to her dreams makes her look very mature. Above all, the fashion of each of the characters in the story was stylish and cute, which also made me feel their maturation.
Also, Yazawa-sensei is known for her unique pop art style. In the anime, her touch has been utilized and the worldview of the work has been faithfully reproduced.
Although "Neighborhood Story" has not been made into a live-action movie, its sequel, "Paradise Kiss," has been made into a live-action movie starring Kitagawa Keiko and Mukai Osamu. In "Paradise Kiss," the story continues to focus on clothing and fashion shows, with Mikako's younger sister and her children playing active roles.
■"Boys Over Flowers"
"Boys Over Flowers", the last of the trendy series and the follow-up to the TV anime "Neighborhood Story", aired from September 1996 to August 1997. The original work was serialized in "Margaret" from 1992 to 2004, and has sold over 61 million copies in total.
The main character is Makino Tsukushi, who entered a school for the wealthy, but is actually from a poor family. She was marked out by Domyoji Tsukasa, a member of the "F4", the richest and most powerful group in the school, and is given a "red tag", which makes her a target for bullying. If you are given a red tag, you will be attacked by all the students; raw eggs will be thrown at you, desks will be lost, you will be ignored, and even the teachers will be ignorant.
As I was watching the anime at the time, I remember feeling uneasy and wondering what a scary place high school was ....... The reason why I continued to watch the anime even though I felt that way was because of Hanazawa Rui.
Hanazawa Rui, one of the F4, is a character that would have captivated many women in the real world as well as in the anime. I think girls are somewhat attracted to his cool and mysterious atmosphere. And after all, he is hot! Whenever Tsukushi was depressed or in trouble, he would appear and help her out.
The story was made into a TV drama in Taiwan, Korea, China, Thailand, and other countries around the world, and in Japan, a 2005 drama starring Inoue Mao, Matsumoto Jun, and Oguri Shun was well received. A second season was produced, and a sequel, "Hana nochi Hare: Hana Otoko Next Season", starring Sugisaki Hana and Hirano Sho, was also produced in 2018, which must be fresh in your mind.
The above is a look back at three trendy works. I remember enjoying watching the anime when it first aired, and as an adult, I still found it interesting. Whether you know the works from back then or have only seen the live-action version, why not take this opportunity to check out the anime and manga?