Heroine Boys and Princely Girls: How “Nozaki-kun” is Challenging Gender Roles in Fiction

Going all analytical on Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun (“Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun”), the funniest – and smartest – show of the summer anime season.

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For those who haven’t seen Nozaki-kun yet, it’s a comedy about a high school girl who finds out her crush is secretly a popular shoujo mangaka (comic artist). She ends up working for him as one of his assistants, and the story follows the two of them and their friends/assistants as they navigate life at school and work.

Simultaneously very funny and sneakily brilliant, it’s one of those rare beasts that can provide smart satire without coming across as pretentious or bitter. While it does play with anime/manga tropes, I think there’s a universality to the humor and ideas that can work even if you’re only a casual anime viewer. In short: You should be watching this series.

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