Synonyms: Nodame Cantabile Paris Chapter, Nodame Cantabile Pari Hen, Nodame Cantabile Pari-Hen
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Oct 10, 2008 to Dec 19, 2008
23 min. per episode
PG-13 - Teens 13 or older
L represents licensing company
Score: 8.331 (scored by 30029 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
SynopsisHaving been given the opportunity to study in Paris, Noda accompanies Chiaki to Europe as he strives to become the accomplished conductor he always dreamt to be.
Related AnimeAdaptation: Nodame Cantabile
Prequel: Nodame Cantabile
Other: PuriGorota: Uchuu no Yuujou Daibouken
Side story: Nodame Cantabile OVA
Sequel: Nodame Cantabile Finale Special
Characters & Voice Actors
I remember being very hesitant to dip my toes into the josei genre due to a silly chemical called testosterone. This all changed when I watched H&C. Finally, I could watch romantic comedies where moe, fanservice, unrealistic sexual situations, and cliches were absent. By the end of H&C I was thoroughly convinced that I would never find another josei of a similar caliber. This is where Nodame Cantabile comes in. Nodame Cantabile has far exceeded my expectations and has captivated me from episode 1.
I will to the best of my abilities review the Paris Chapter in a way that will hopefully prove helpful to any interested readers.
Note: Many References to Season 1 will be made. If you haven’t watched it… well why are you watching Paris Chapter? >.>
Story~ N/A Pacing~ 7.5
The story takes place right after episode 23 of season 1. As the title of the anime may suggest our two beloved MCs will explore the extravagant land of Paris as they struggle with their musical careers ... and quite honestly there's really nothing more to it than that, its simply a slice of life. I don't believe in judging a slice of life anime on story, especially when we're considering a sequel that has already had a majority of its core development taken care of in the previous season so I will now talk about the pacing.
Now from multiple perspectives the pacing was good and bad. Good in the sense that they fit a surprising amount of character development into a mere 11 episodes and bad in the sense that the season was … well 11 episodes. The runtime does not do the sequel justice and it just does not feel the same as season 1. Characters are very abruptly introduced, months go by within minutes, and so on. It is good to mention that for the little time the producers did have they displayed a very good amount of development between Chiaki and Nodame. In the end the producers did the best they could with what they were given and the short run time is only one of the sequel’s few flaws.
The art is more or less the same as season 1. JC Staff still provides the very warm, plain, simple animations that drew me into the first season. Something great about the art in this season is the difference in setting. The Paris backgrounds look beautiful through the Nodame Cantabile art style. It makes the watcher truly feel that Chiaki and Nodame are far from home, in a distant fairy-tale. The one major difference I saw between the seasons is the usage of CGI animation. Having well rendered CGI animations would have been a huge step up from the still shots of orchestras playing but unfortunately the CGI was very stiff and poorly executed. Rather than enhancing the experience of watching the orchestra perform the CGI made the performers seem very robotic and unnatural and ultimately became a distraction rather than an improvement. Other than the CGI flaw, the art of Paris Chapter stays true to its roots and is well done and strong throughout the whole show.
Now how did an anime so heavily based on classical music not receive a 10 in sound? Don't get me wrong the pieces chosen for Paris Chapter were beautiful and an absolute joy to listen to but I felt like the time devoted to music paled in comparison to season 1. I kept in mind that this is most likely accountable due to the air time being less than half of season 1. The producers were likely trying to keep the music feel of the show while having enough time for character development. Unfortunately, the lack of devotion to the musical segments do hamper the joy when Chiaki and Nodame perform. Putting aside the fact that the pieces are played for short time segments, Paris Chapter’s choice of classical pieces is still very varied and diverse. Being a complete stranger to classical music, Nodame Cantabile gave me a new appreciation for this genre of music and Paris Chapter did it again.
The voice acting is still very strong. The trademark “Gyabo!” and “Myuka!”s are well timed and done in a hilarious fashion. Chiaki and Nodame still stay true to their personalities in season 1. A large amount of new supporting characters were introduced but each of their voice actors did a very good job. None of them seemed out of place and the warm, cozy, Nodame Cantabile atmosphere was left undisturbed. All in all, the voice acting was great with the flaws being largely unnoticeable.
Now for the OP. The OP for the whole season is Sky High by The Gospellers. To be frank, I didn’t really care for the OP. The song was average and the animations were a bit boring. I found myself skipping it almost every single time. The ED (Tokyo et Paris by Solita and Emiri Miyamoto) on the other hand was great. A gorgeous violin piece was played with the soft touching voice of Solita. The whole song is in French and so it just adds to the overall Paris feel of the anime. Listening to it after every episode was joy as you saw the credits rolling accompanied by still shots of our beloved characters.
Now THIS is where a slice of life truly shines. Chiaki and Nodame’s relationship take a very sudden change in direction from the first season. Gone are the subtle developments and the ever so slow realization of love that were present in the first season. Chiaki and Nodame’s relationship is no longer one sided and is portrayed in a way that convinces the audience the long 23+ episode wait was more than worth it. Although this change in approach to their relationship is great I felt as if sometimes certain things were rushed and just completely out of no where due to the short air time. Other then that, the romantic scenes in Paris Chapter are well done and numerous. A huge step with Nodame is her increasing independency. She no longer clings to Chiaki as he mercilessly whacks her away. This in turn causes both individuals to become jealous, uncertain, and worried about each other. In other words, finally being an acknowledged couple, we get to see development in ways that could never be addressed in the first season. This only greater strengthens their bonds with each other and the audience.
Now a huge minus to Paris Chapter was the complete disappearance of the supporting cast from the first season. The only characters that were still around were Kuroki and Stresemann although Kuroki was one of the more boring characters while Stresemann appeared very infrequently. This results in most of the screen time for supporting characters being directed at the new cast. In no way is this bad, but like almost everything else in the show, the new supporting cast suffers greatly due to the short air time. No real development really happens with any of them which is completely fine because most of the emphasis is put on Chiaki and Nodame anyways. The new supporting cast does a great job in providing an authentic college atmosphere but don’t get expected to feel attached to any of them.
In the end, Nodame Cantabile Paris Chapter was a great watch. Although it did pale in comparison to the first season in many fields, it also had its strengths. A relatively short run time causes the anime to suffer as a whole but should not be a reason Nodame Cantabile lovers shouldn’t give it a try. We get to see a new side of Chiaki and Nodame as they explore the musical wonderland called Paris. Each episode was filled to the brim with events, sometimes too much. But it keeps the audience busy and the absence of pointless fillers is always a plus.
As far as sequels go, Paris Chapter did a great job. Honestly, if there’s 11 more episodes where I get to experience Chiaki and Nodame I’m going to watch it regardless.
The humour was great.
The characters were great.
The romance was great.
A well done sequel to Nodame Cantabile. Now onto the finale~
Sequels are always a bit of a problem when it comes to matters of continuity, depth of story, character development, and sometimes even the look and feel of a show. All too often will the viewing public find the first season of a given franchise to be very good, only to be served a huge helping of mediocrity when the sequel comes around.
There is hope though, as while there are plenty of shows that let the viewer down in this way, there are a growing number that actually manage to equal, if not better, the original series, and one such example is Nodame Cantabile: Paris Chapter.
Now as fans of the franchise will already know, the story is about the eccentric (or slightly mad, whichever takes your fancy), and thoroughly otaku musical genius known as Noda Megumi (Nodame is her nickname), and her reluctant, long suffering love interest Chiaki Shinichi. As the title of the series suggests, this time the pair have moved to Paris to continue their studies. Nodame will attend the music conservatory under the tutelage of the reknowned Charles Auclair, while Chiaki will continue to his apprenticeship under the erstwhile maestro Franz von Stresseman.
Unlike the original series, the plot is far less derived in Paris Chapter. The main reason for this is because a good portion of the original was spent setting the scene and introducing the characters, so by the time Paris Chapter came around much of the hard work had already been done. The story is thus able to continue from where it left off at the end of Nodame Cantabile, however the second series is also reliant on firsthand knowledge of the original as there is very little time spent on pointless flashbacks scenes. While there is a degree of scene setting and character introduction, this is handled in an expedient manner that helps to maintain the flow of the plot.
As far as looks go, Paris Chapter is actually a little better than the original series. While both retain the same atmosphere, the second series has a far more continental look due to the location, which is also reflected in style of clothing. Both Nodame and Chiaki look much the same as they did at the end of the original anime, while the new characters (Tanya, Frank, Yunlong, etc), follow the style of the series to a tee (i.e. highly expressive yet slightly "cartoony" features). The animation is a step up from Nodame Cantabile in that the strange CG used during the musical set pieces is actually smoother and more fluid than before. That said, much of the remaining character animation is pretty much what one would expect from the franchise, and many of the visual gags are well timed and choreographed.
Once again though, the areas where the series really excels are with the sound and music. The voice acting is as good as before (if not better), especially in the roles that continue on from the first series. The newcomers manage to fit in to the cast rather well, and while their performances are loaded with expression, they manage to capture that quirky, eccentric atmosphere that is a hallmark of the franchise.
In terms of music, Paris Chapter is far more focused on delivering set pieces than the original series, and the difference is palpable. This show literally oozes classical music from every pore, so much so in fact, the variety of tracks on offer in Paris Chapter easily rivals that of the first season.
As before though, this is very much a character driven show, and while season one managed a good degree of development for both Nodame and Chiaki, Paris Chapter takes it to a whole new level. In addition to this, the show spends a fair amount of time developing the supporting characters in much the same way as the original. The downside though, is that where the first series had 23 episodes to play with, Paris Chapter only has 11. Now one would think that there is no way to provide any meaningful growth to new characters in such a short time, however this is not the case as the nature of series two is to follow directly on from the original. The benefit of this is that both leads only need to build on their development from the first season, so more time can be spent refining the characters and strengthening their presence in the story, as well as focusing more on the supporting cast. Ironically, this is also the main reason why it is essential to have watched the first season beforehand as much of Nodame and Chiaki's characterisation in Paris Chapter is dependent on the viewer knowing their history.
Now it should be fairly obvious that I enjoyed Paris Chapter, and to be honest I found it to be as good as the original series. While the show continues to develop the plot and characters, it also manages to retain the eccentric charm of the original without miring itself in melodrama. The new characters are a boon to the series as they complement the story in some novel ways that may not be obvious at first. One example of this is Frank, a music student and European "otaku", who learns firsthand what otaku power is really capable of (thanks to Nodame and an episode of PuriGorota).
What I've always liked about the Nodame Cantabile franchise are the lengths the anime goes to in order to stay true to the manga, and Paris Chapter only serves to reinforce this. The plot is literally taken straight from the pages its paper based counterpart, and while there are some differences due to time constraints (amongst other things), anyone who has read the manga should find themselves on very familiar ground.
As far as sequels go, Nodame Cantabile: Paris Chapter is pretty much everything fans of the original could hope for. read more
Both are mixture of romance and comedy. The difference is that Suoh Tamaki's (one of the male main character) personality is quite similar to Nodame's, and that Fujioka Haruhi is almost like the female side of Chiaki.
Opening Theme"Sky High!" by The Gospellers
Ending Theme"東京 et 巴里 (Tokyo and Paris)" by Emiri Miyamoto x Solita
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