Damn, did it really take me over three months to begin my first blog entry of 2010?
By the way, spoilers for the Nana manga are forthcoming. To those who care, you've been warned.
I've been a fan of Ai Yazawa for the past few years. I saw Paradise Kiss
when it came out in Japan and loved
it (with it still being my favourite shojo title in both mediums), and I enjoyed what I saw of Neighborhood Story
. So when I heard about Nana, I was psyched to give it a whirl. I initially watched the first 20 episodes, but I fell behind and never caught up, so I opted to continue through the manga instead.
As I started to read it, I found myself engrossed to the story and characters. While I still found myself liking ParaKiss more, there was no doubt in my mind that Ai Yazawa was telling a great story of two women trying to make it on their own in Tokyo.
As the story progressed however, the primary cast have found themselves slowly but surely being sucked into a whirlpool of darkness. They try to escape, but to no avail.
Now, I must say that I actually like drama. It's one of my favourite genres, and it helps fuel my desire and enjoyment for romance titles adapted from visual novels. I loved it when Shuffle!
got darker halfway through, Suzuka
's dramatic moments helped me through despite the titular character's bitchiness towards Yamato, and I don't know if I would've enjoyed Canvas 2
and Myself ; Yourself
as much as I did if there wasn't some drama thrown in.
But man, now it's like they're being kicked when they're already down. Repeatedly. And just when they muster enough strength to try and stand up, they get whacked in the head by a baseball bat.
It's starting to become a little unbearable to read, to be honest. At first, it was sad, but it didn't bother me. The fallout between Shoji and Nana K. was a little depressing, but I got over it rather quickly. But the her pregnancy and the loss of Nobu as a potential boyfriend was only the tip of the iceberg. Now it's just brutal
Seeing Ren being unable to ask Nana for support is sad to watch, as is (and ESPECIALLY) the whole Shin/Reira/Takumi mess. Reading the last chapter of Vol. 19 made me vocally rage, since that all but killed any chance of Shin and Reira getting back together.
When the desire to see it through and Miu/Yasu are all that's helping me get through this title, that's a problem.
I still have Vol. 20 to read, but I'm now looking at it with trepidation. Let's hope there are at least SOME happy moments to offset all this depressing stuff.
To end it off, I'll just say this:
The Demon Lord is commonly said to be the cause of (some of) their troubles by both Nanas. It didn't occur to me at the time, but a random forum post pointed out that it is indeed the Demon Lord's fault. For everything, in fact.
After some thought, I couldn't agree more