Review: Nodame Cantabile Paris Chapter part 1

Having accomplished everything that he can in Japan, Chiaki moves to Paris to continue his musical development. As for Nodame, her performance in the competition brings her to the attention of Charles Auclair, she is able to take and pass the entrance exam for the Paris Conservatoire. What becomes of the pair as they come face to face with the reality of what it means to become a professional musician?

After not quite enjoying the first season, I put this series on hold after the 4th episode or so, and didn’t pick it up again until about 2 months ago. Stupid, really, given what I mentioned when I reviewed the first season. I much prefer the Paris arc over the 1st half of the story, and the drama wasn’t quite as good in that department (although I thoroughly enjoyed the original drama series). However, to me, the second season of the anime is definitely an improvement on the first.

Firstly, one of the minus points of the original has been corrected: performance scenes are actually animated now. 跳んだ!!Admittedly, it can never be as good as watching a live performance (which I now know that I’ll enjoy more if I’m close enough to actually see the expressions on the faces of the performers – I didn’t when I actually had access to them whilst in England), but the movement added just that little bit more to the impression that music is not just played, but rather performed. Katahira’s leaps in the second episode was particularly well animated, I think.

The second series also focusses far more on the relationship between Chiaki and Nodame. In the Japan arc, it seemed like Chiaki was always struggling to deal with Nodame’s obsession with him. (Although, if you think about it from the perspective of Japanese culture, really, Shinichi-kun should just have accepted the inevitable truth sooo long ago…) Surrounded by so many people who knew both him and Nodame, it seems like the relationship was something he was really embarrassed by. However, the new environment in Paris enables their relationship to develop faster and further, as they have no one to depend on but themselves and each other, and each advances further as the other’s muse.

hm…yes, inspiration is an important theme in this story. Though to finish this line of thought, we need to get to the end of the story…which is thankfully coming soon. Bring on Autumn!

p.s. I’m quite happy with the seiyuu again. I will always enjoy Seki Tomokazu’s Chiaki, and Matsukaze Masaya having to display a more flustered side of Kuroki-kun was fun, although nothing beats his Kyouya in Ouran!

About karice
MAG fan, freelance translator and political scientist-in-training. I also love musicals, travel and figure skating!

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