Who doesn’t like Japanese manga series? They all have anamazing story, nice animation and a little touch of romance. One such manga series isNijiiro Days. Nijiiro Days in the western world is also called Rainbow Days. It is a Japanese Shojo manga series, written and illustrated by Minami Mizuno and published in the Bessatsu Margaret magazine. Its anime adaptation premiered on 10 January 2016.
Nijiiro Days and Shojo Manga: Introducing Great Manga You Need To Know About
What is a Shojo manga?
For those of you unfamiliar with the term, Shojo means “young woman”. In fact, this kind of comic is aimed at young female readers, who are often interested in romantic stories. Shojo mangas can also be historical or science fiction: the one thing they all have in common is the type of reader, not the subject.
Nijiiro Days: main plot and characters
This particular story revolves around 4 high school boys who are all friends with each other. The main lead of this series is called Natsuki Hashiba, who is a dreamer with delusions of love. He has a crush on a girl named Anna. And then there are his friends: Tomoya Matsunaga, a self-centered playboy who has multiple girlfriends; Tsuyoshi Naoe, an otaku who has a cosplayer girlfriend; and Keiichi Katakura, an eccentric sadist who always carries a whip and keeps meddling with Natsuki’s relationship.
Nijiiro Days is mainly focused on friendship and of course, love.It’s funny because of the diversity in the characters, which causes curiosity about who they get along with and how they treat eachother. For the people like us whose teenage years have passed, there can be a lot of familiarity with this kind of story. Natsuki is a young boy in his teen years, trying to come in contact with the girl that handed him a tissue box on a Christmas Eve to comfort him for being dumped. At the end of the day, we have all been there, haven’t we?
Side plots of Nijiiro Days
But there are also unusual and funny situations, which may not be familiar to us but can still make us laugh and have a good time. Keiichi, for example, loves using the whip in bed, a habit that not all girls actually enjoy. Tomoya, on the other hand, is the kind of friend that many of us might have had in high school. He fakes romance with many girls, but at some point finds the one he truly wants. It’s Mari, Anna’s friend, who is actually in love with Anna herself. This awkward love triangle doesn’t stop him from trying though, because of all the quirks he likes in Mari.
What are these quirks? Mainly, her bitchy behavior with everyone except her beloved Anna. She is not a very friendly person in general, and like many of us may have experienced, this is the kind of personality that sometimes attracts even more than friendliness. Guys love a girl they can’t have, because it makes the chase much more difficult! Otherwise, where is all the fun? And since Tomoya is a playboy, even though in love, fun is his ultimate goal. But something is going to rain on his parade: the meeting between his little sister Noozomi and the sadist Keiichi, which happens on the beach. Keiichi is a friend, but not exactly the kind of person you would want near your little sister.
In the beginning, the story of Nijiiro Days is all about the boys and their adventures. But once each character finds the girl he wants to be with, these girls come together and form a group of their own. The glue that keeps all of them close is an established couple, Tsuyoshi and Yukiko. They are a cosplayer and an otaku, which means “a person who has a passion for anime, manga and Japanese culture in general”. Cosplayers can also be considered part of this category, as they like to dress up as the characters of manga and anime. Therefore, theirs is a very common relationship in Japan, but may seem uncommon to Western readers and viewers. Cosplaying is a practice that is spreading all over the world, but Japanese people will always have a better understanding of it!
Nijjiro Days as manga and anime
Let’s move now to practical information. The manga series of Nijiiro Days consists of 13 volumes, the first one of which was published on 13 February 2012. As many other manga series, it is still ongoing to this day. The anime, instead, was aired from 10 January 2016 to 26 June 2016. It is made up of 24 episodes, and each one of them is less than 15 minutes long. This, according to viewers, made a better characterization of the protagonists impossible. But the story is supposed to be a lighthearted comedy, so it’s not that much of a problem.Written by Aki Itami, the anime was directed by Tetsuro Amino and Tomohiko Ohkubo, with music by Hiroyuki Kozu.
Since the manga is still ongoing, fans keep their hopes up about a possible anime sequel. In the meantime, they can certainly enjoy the season that already aired, which offers the perfect distraction from everyday life.
Why is Nijiiro Days worth reading?
If we dig deep, what makes Nijiiro Days so fun and interesting? Probably the normalcy of its characters, and here is why in a nutshell.
Natsuki, nicknamed Natchan, falls in love with a girl at first sight without knowing she will turn out to be his classmate later on. His friends bully him a lot for being hopeless, but care for him and help him conquer Anna’s heart. His sensibility is what draws us to him, and also the fact that his friends act tough, but actually care about his wellbeing. Typical teenage boys, afraid to show their vulnerable side.
Tomoya is very protective of his sister, even if it means going against his own friends. Keiichi is athletic and amazing in sports, but hides a dark side underneath the cheerfulness. His older brother Yuji is also affected by this: when he finds out that the woman he likes is a sadist too, he dumps her. This shows how family members can influence our own life.
In conclusion, Nijiiro Days is a manga series highly recommended to find an escape from everyday life. It won’t be engaging as science fiction or adventure comic books, but it will take you back to a time when life was easier and funnier.