NANA is definitely one of the best mangas that I've ever read. There's something about it that makes it very different from other ones, so I personally think it's a must-read. Anyways, my review may contain some spoilers, but I'll try my best not to reveal too much.
The first thing that comes to mind when I think of NANA is how incredibly realistic it is compared to many other mangas. It starts out very normal like any other shoujo/josei manga; introducing the two main characters who both happen to have the name Nana. It pretty much follows the life of these two girls as
they meet on a train to Tokyo, and then later decide to share an apartment. It may sound a bit dull and boring, but the story always draws you in and makes you wonder what would happen next. Personally what I think is best about the story is the realistic aspect of it, since I've always loved serious and realistic mangas/animes. After reading so many silly mangas with unrealistic story plots, I found it very refreshing to read something completely different. In fact, it's so realistic to the point that I find myself wishing that it wouldn't be so realistic, since NANA definitely isn't your happily ever after story.
Well, I hate to say this but the art of NANA isn't the best. It's not that the mangaka is a bad artist or anything, but the style of NANA just doesn't appeal to me very much. I also don't really like how some of the backgrounds seem as if they are a completely different style of art. Sometimes it looks as if the characters are standing in front of some wallpaper rather than in the actual place so that kinda bothers me. On the other hand, I love how much detail the mangaka puts in the characters and their clothes.
I'm not giving this section a 10 because I think all the characters are perfect and love them all to death, but rather because there is at least one thing I don't like about almost all the characters. That may sound weird, but the reason why I like it is because of how realistic it makes them and how it makes you able to relate to them very easily. I can easily imagine all the characters being real people, and almost all of them are very well developed. Another thing I like about the manga NANA is how the mangaka isn't afraid to put in traits like selfishness and possessiveness and have the characters realize those traits in themselves. I don't think I've ever read another manga that had that, so I was pretty impressed when I first read those parts.
I really don't have much to say here...all I have to say is that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this.
Okay, I'll just be repeating myself here if I say how much I enjoyed it, so I'll just add a few things here that I didn't put up here. So another thing I like about NANA is how it makes you think a bit about life in general. The things that the characters say sometimes made me realize some stuff, and now because of NANA I think I can understand people a bit better. :3
I recommend this manga to people who like realistic plots that have a bit of humor in it. But if you're someone that likes fairy tail plots, happily ever afters, perfect princes/princesses, or couples that have no problems then this definitely isn't the manga for you. And it's also for an older audience so please don't read it if you're really young. o3o
NANA is a great romantic/dramatic manga. NANA also have some funny moments. The manga is about two girls with the same name, Nana, and they meet by fate and eventually become best friends. Even though they are best friends, their life take a twist and they are separated by fame, husband, boyfriend, and work. This manga shows the world of the entertainment industry and it focus it on bands and music and a bit of adult movie but that its later on the manga.
NANA starts out as people trying to pursue their dreams. What's more important for an singer/band/model: Follow their dreams or their loved
The decision is very hard on the characters; and each character walks a different path. Its about friends and love being separated by their choices.
The character in this manga is awesome. Everyone with a different style and background. Everyone with problems with love, passion, work and romance. And because its about the intertainment industry, it has a little bit about everything. I dont want to write it out because I think I will ruin/spoil the manga.
Oh yeah, I think this was my first shoujo a friend of my recommended it to me and I loved it. Somehow I skipped the first volume and started reading the second volume and I still got the story =P.
I really love this manga and the way it starts every chapter, with words like, "Do you remember Nana, the day . . . if it was not because you stayed by my side . . ."
I really recommend this manga.
Overall I think NANA’s main selling point is “realism” and that it’s a pretty realistic look at the Japanese music industry, though dramatized, of course. The characters feel like real people and the relationships, which are really an extension of the characters, almost never go in foreseeable directions. Some intriguing backstory has come to light and I\'m in suspense on several fronts -- I really want to know whether things will turn out okay for these characters.
But at the end of the day, I think Ai Yazawa\'s Paradise Kiss is better, because it is tighter. Nana is full of drama and
suspense and heartbreak and really messed up characters, but it tends to drag, especially in the later volumes.
The longer we live, the more weight we carry in our hearts.
A sentence that truly summarizes and embodies the manga of Nana. The tale follows the lives of two very different girls who share the same name of Nana, and not much else. After a fateful meeting on a train bound to Tokyo, they manage to become friends and their lives weave closely together from that moment forwards. Written most nostalgically by one of the Nana’s from sometime years in the future, the story is a remembrance of the friendship between two girls and all the people who surrounded them who all rushed into life
with the vigor, innocence and optimism of youth; and returned so tragic, weary and worn by circumstance and choice.
While wrongly categorized as a Shoujo series, Nana is very much a Josei in its explicit content, realistic storytelling, and maturity, so it is far better to be read by an audience who can handle such things.
★ Story (9) – Like longing letters written to the past, Nana unfolds in remembrance and nostalgia from the point of view of one of the Nana’s many years into the future. A simple meeting between two girls of the same age and bearing the same name quickly evolves into a tangled web of many lives with romance and betrayal; long distance relationships and unhealthy romances; cheating scandals and underage prostitutes; unplanned pregnancies and family secrets; obsession and desire; sex and rock n’ roll…All of which is set against the backdrop of a very modern, very fashionable, very young Tokyo where debauchery and youth go hand in hand reigning supreme, and friendship deeper than anything remains the unbreakable link between people lost in the modern world, and in themselves.
Punctuated with ambience throughout, this series is littered with an aching yearning for the past, and a wish to relive life and avoid all the mistakes that brought the story to a vague, but seemingly unhappy future.
★ Art (9) - The artwork of Nana is incredibly distinctive, stylish and highly unique and in so is an absolutely acquired taste. Very artsy and drawn in high style, the characters of Nana are all skin and bones (almost disgustingly so) and always sporting the very latest in fashion. The photographic backgrounds add a touch of realism to the artwork, and yet another sense of style to this very stylish series. Everything is drawn painstakingly well, and in detail from strands of hair to eyelashes. While the style will not be liked by everyone, the art still remains a high scorer for the unique style and the high and consistent quality.
★ Character (10) – This is a series where I really dislike the majority of the cast. So why did I rank the characters so highly? Simple – they are so realistic. Every single character is a three dimensional person unto themselves, with very distinctive personalities and traits unique to them. Not one character can be boxed and labeled as a cliché or a stereotype and indeed, their characterizations are deconstructed time and time again in the course of the story. No matter what choices the character makes or does not make they are given insight and depth throughout. Complex and layered, these characters function and fumble along like real people, constantly shedding and growing new sides to them while remaining themselves in their entirety. While the characters are rather difficult to like on the whole, it is very easy to come to terms with them, and to reach out and understand them on a different level.
They are difficult and contradictory; prickly and sweet; unlikable and loveable – they are completely and utterly human, and in this humanness they are defined.
★ Enjoyment (9) – This is a series for people who want to read about the joy and pain of youth; of the good choices and terrible mistakes which haunt lives years afterward. This is a slice of life story of the most realistic and raw degree with all the twists and turns of life, and the bumps and bruises of stumbling through them.
★ Overall (9) – This beautiful, mature Josei series is a real page turner, and highly recommended for those mature enough to handle it.
This is a series that shows how even the most simple and mundane of choices in our day to day lives can have an effect on those same lives, and can spiral into something much larger in time. It shows us how youth can be the most precious key given in life, with the most painful doors and secrets to unlock.
It shows how life gives us such fond, wonderful memories – but also chokes and tears us apart with those same remembrances. And it shows how friendship is the most wonderful gift to have, and how it is also the heaviest burden to carry.
How very true it is then: that the longer we live, the more weight we carry in our hearts.
Nana was, I must admit, relatively realistic for a Manga.
We meet Nana#1, later nicknamed Hachikō, as the story begins, a dumb-ass of a chick, more like a hopeless case of the human race.
That's either: WAY too horny or must have been high on SOMETHING for most of her life.
Falling in 'love at first sight' seems to be her strongest skill, as well as 'judging a book by its cover' and inevitably, is a pro at being the victim of breakups. Though sometimes she is cute, she can be a major headache for readers and characters alike.
Then we meet Nana#2, nicknamed the Dark Priestess
by Nana#1's bestfriend, and seems to be the trump card of Black Stones, her band, and is generally a wild kind of chick, that at times has a heart made of gold and is a whole lotta fun when she is drunk.
And through circumstances these two Nana's meet and so is born the plot.
The writer has built strong, flexible personalities that flow through their story. More than the actual story, I liked the characters. Everyone of them had their own idiosyncrasies, their own habits, their own style and most importantly, their own life; in other words, realism.
The art was unique to the story and definitely, the artist infused their own style into the art and for that, this Manga is on a different level to most Mangas' and Manhwas' because of its originality. For the illustrator not to follow the mainstream style of art that most stories use is a great feat within itself and keen readers appreciate the effort; a lot.
Overall, the story does get slow but if you suck it up; you'll find that the story is not as over-rated as you thought.
I think NANA is one of the best manga's around right now. You know how the characters feel and it's not predictable at all. It doesn't take a long time before you know the characters and know how they are. Nana is a manga with a lot of drama, laughter and romance and it has a mysterious side. Overall this is my favorite manga and I think Ai Yazawa did a great job on this one.
I am fairly new to shoujo Mangas, but I think that Nana is one of the best ones ever. It’s just that kind of manga that keeps you on your toes, trying to guess what’s next (even though you will be shocked at how different what Ai Yazawa comes up with is from what you expected).
Nana is about how life is extremely unpredictable; two girls with the same name “Nana” meet on a train to Tokyo. The girls are totally different but meet again in an apartment that they end up renting together, so they become roommates and friends. Then the Mangaka takes us on
the journey that the girls take (one wants to become a famous singer, and the other wants to find love) and how the choices they make will affect their lives, friendship, and relationships to others later on, sort of like the Chaos Theory.
The Character development (throughout the chapters available) is exceptional. Trying to change and grow, trying to forget the past, making the same mistakes…etc. I just think that the characters in Nana are awesome and so realistic.
Nana made me laugh, cry, think, drop my jaw. If you read Nana, you will find themes like: friendship, love, life, Dreams, celebrities world, drama, realism and many more. I just wish that Ai Yazawa could get better and finish it, it kinda pisses me off that I can’t finish reading it!!!
I recommend it to all because I am sure you will find something that will appeal to you :)
Warning: NANA has been on hiatus since 2009. Although faithful fans continue to hope for the end of this series, there's no real indication that our dreams will become realized.
However, even with such an unnerving warning, I still strongly recommend this manga to anyone who enjoys a multilayered story with human characters and beautiful art.
There was news last year that Ai Yazawa was going to return from her leave to continue the series, or at least, she had the intentions/desires to. So, I decided to reread the entire manga series from Volume 1 all over again. Even though I'm frustrated that there still remains
any signs of a new chapter, I couldn't help but fall in love all over again.
The art is incredible. Every character is beautiful and their clothing and accessories an aesthetic bonus. Attention to detail... Tribute to Vivienne Westwood... There were so many artistically appealing qualities to NANA that I can't put all of the praise to words. Looks alone, I'm pretty sure I swooned for everyone.
The story is the most intricate that I've encountered in manga (or anime). As in life, there are many gray areas and many layers and perspectives to every situation. Because Ai Yazawa has crafted such a multifaceted plot, it's hard to speculate the ending. Although many fans have produced interesting and plausible theories to fill in the plot (and time) gaps, who knows what the Queen (that is Ai Yazawa) has in store for us. She's just THAT good.
Naturally, the characters have to be outstanding in order for the story to be. And they are. It's hard to hate anyone because they are so human (and with humanity, comes human error and flaws). I think I fell in love with every single one of the characters. Each one has their own story that is unique and gives readers a better understanding of how their faults came to be. However, that's not to say that some of them won't do things to completely upset you. I'm sure everyone who reads this series ends up liking some characters more than others. Regardless of your own story, I'm pretty confident that you'll find relatable aspects among the cast of NANA. Personally, I was a lot younger when I first read NANA and now rereading it almost a decade later, I found myself empathizing more, having gone through similar experiences in my young adulthood. Thus, I do truly agree that this is best categorized under josei. Even though younger female readers would enjoy this series, I think the enjoyment and appreciation is different (and deeper) for a more mature audience.
Finally, I couldn't give this manga a solid 10 because in spite of how amazing it is, it's still unfinished. Not that I think Ai Yazawa could really botch NANA at this point, no matter how she decides (if ever) to conclude the story, but to be fair, enjoyment and story wise, it's not really ideal to have an open ending with so many questions left unanswered.
Last Warning: This manga pulls hard at heartstrings. Don't read if you can't handle drama, angst and heartache.
I'm not just giving this story good ratings just because. I'm giving it great ratings because it's a wonderful story and it's so real, it touches the heart. The characters are beautiful and each thought out on their own and their troubles, which makes the story great. What I find great about the story is the friendship that was formed between Nana and Hachi within six months and how it impacts them from then on. I think the friendship of the two main characters is the best part about this manga.
The story picks up in an interesting light, which drew me in (I won't spoil
anyone) and the meeting between the two Nana's is so casual, but they instantly form a friendship of sorts. Throughout the series, the story bounces back and forth between the two main characters, as well supporting characters. Basically everyone gets their own screen time, which is wonderful. Everyone is connected in some way, which also helps the story.
I've read and watched NaNa several times since its release way back when and that's a testimony to why I am reviewing even almost 10 years after the tragic hiatus.
The story is unlike any other you will find in shoujo/josei manga. Sure, there are some of the usual tropes but they are told with such sensibility that you will look past those and enjoy every single part of it.
I personally adore the art. Being someone who has followed Ai Yazawa's work over time, NaNa is at the height of her talents. It is however an acquired taste, I admit, but those single shot panels of
eyes, where so much emotion is conveyed, I just haven't been moved that way with many other manga.
Her art just has style and a fashion sense that's usually lacking in many other manga.
Just think about it; in how many manga do you see a character's outfit change every single day? Any real person would change clothing throughout the days, which is what also adds to the realism here.
The characters are all, in some way likeable as well as not. All of them, bar none, have flaws. There is no perfect hero that lacks depth and no character is simply a plot-device only there to teach the hero a lesson.
Some characters even the most despicable are full-fledged human beings and you are led to understand the meanings behind their actions through skilfully crafted backstories and character development arcs.
I can only give it an overall of 9 because the story is incomplete. It is a masterpiece and should definitely be read, but beware of the heart-ache and tragedy that not only will come from the plot but due to the story being cut off right at a crucial moment, you will be left quite frustrated.
I hope one day Yazawa sensei will be able to complete her work. NaNa is a cult classic that cannot be missed out on, simply put.
Nana, Nana, Nana how to describe in a few paragraphs all my feelings on this manga which, I think, will remain my favorite all kinds included.
Shōjo or Josei?
Many define Nana as a shōjo however I would say that Nana is a josei because a shōjo is intended for a rather young female public whereas a josei is intended for a more mature female public. I started reading Nana at the age of 18 and have been reading it regularly ever since (currently over 80 times). 80 times would you tell me? Yes I did and yet each
time my analysis changes slightly. I think we need to step back in order to appreciate all the subtleties of the characters. You can ask 10 different people what they think of this or that character, they will all answer something different.
Despite a world out of the ordinary for most of us: fame, music, rock, punk, Ai Yazawa has brilliantly managed to show all the human complexity. All the clichés and stereotypes with which we constantly live, especially in France, are shaken.
Some topics covered:
- love in all its forms
- love between two people: can one love several people at once?
- dream VS reality
Ai Yazawa shows us all the facets of men, all their fragilities.
If Nana Osaki with her punk look seemed to be strong, imperturbable, independent, she shows as the story progresses her weaknesses, her doubts, her doubts that she has trouble managing due to her past.
On the other hand Nana Komatsu seems unstable, fragile or even superficial. However, as the manga progresses, she becomes the rock, the person on whom one rests.
Nana is a surprising manga because the characters themselves are constantly evolving. We are used to putting each human being in boxes: he is kind, he is beautiful, he is strong, he is intelligent, he is... However Nana proves to us that human beings evolve, learn or not from their mistakes, continually seek to be happy, to make others happy.
Is Nana depressing?
Nana like her characters cannot be placed in a category. The story is sad but only if we see it from a certain perspective because it is also very funny. To be honest it was one of the mangas that made me laugh the most, we recognize Ai Yazawa's humour.
A story that holds us in suspense
The manga is currently on break since 2009 and has a total of 84 chapters or 22 volumes. 84 chapters rich in emotions and twists. We quickly learn that the story is told by Nana Komatsu thanks to flash-backs. An unexpected event shakes the lives of the characters and it will be necessary to wait for volume 20 to understand what happened. Meanwhile the manga keeps us in suspense, the characters are continually confronted with their desires and their uncertainties.
This manga is above all human, it makes us think about our dreams, our behaviour. He invites us to ask ourselves what we would have done in this or that situation. We can call it the magic of Ai Yazawa, the magic of Nana.
I found Nana a very truly amazing anime. The art may not be very detailed at some points but when it is, it looks beautiful. The character development is probably the best I have ever seen. The characters are very unique, funny and good looking at the same time. The story line is a mix of cliche and life, mostly life, and I really like that because i spent a lot of time looking for a good slice of life story. Fun fact: Nana is the is the only anime I have ever cried on, which is a big deal since I have watched and
read Shingeki no Kyojin and have never cried over it. I found the soundtrack one of the best things about Nana. I hava never really been a fan of punk rock but the sountrack of Nana really drew me in somehow. Overall, Nana is a funny, musical, romantic, cliche and heart-breaking ride through Tokyo. I give it a 10.
I fell in love with NANA the second I looked at the cover of the first volume. It is so beautiful and atmospheric, just like the opening phrase Hachi says each episode. There are little parts of the story that I will always carry with me, like a new found affinity for things like strawberry printed glass cups, woodworking, and bathtubs. In my opinion, NANA is a very good thing to remember, and at times angering to watch. I say watch in a manga review because I haven't been able to read past a certain point in the manga (my library doesn't hold the series
to where it stopped), but I have seen most of the anime so I am using that to go off of. I really love NANA. It has probably my favorite atmosphere to any piece I've read. However, I found the characters to be a bit frustrating at times. Hachi would make such god-awful decisions that would turn me off of the story. To be honest, I am a person who would love a Nana x Nana endgame where they end up together and support each other and are a cute couple who don't constantly back stab each other, but I highly doubt that sort of conclusion would have been possible. All and all, NANA is a piece I highly recommend. It will make you feel some type of way when you look back on it, and it is just such an iconic must-read for shojo fans.