The END DAY: Paris-hen

Last year I was too busy not watching anime to commemorate The END DAY. This year I’m writing a double post to make up for it.

Nodame Cantabile: Paris-hen

The first season of Nodame Cantabile (++) told an excellent story. More importantly for the purposes of this post, it told a complete story. There was no conflict left on the table. Chiaki conquered his fears. His personality warmed up. Sure, Chiaki still had some goals that would take more time to fulfill, such as meeting his mentor and becoming a great conductor, but there was no doubt he’d eventually do both as a matter of course. With the old conflicts, old setting, and old side characters out of the picture, there were only three reasons watch the second season:

  • Would Chiaki and Nodame’s romance get anywhere?
  • Would the new season introduce a decent conflict?
  • Would the new season introduce good characters?

Paris-hen failed on all accounts.

I only remember two things from the few Paris-hen episodes I sat through. First, there was some bullshit otaku character living in the same apartment as Chiaki. Second, Chiaki kissed Nodame out of nowhere just to shut her up (Simpsons did it). The whole thing was a contrived mess. A few months later it occurred to me that I hadn’t watched another episode.


Kyoto Animation was on my shitlist after K-ON. Whatever came next was doomed to be dropped if it didn’t impress quickly.

I fully expected Nichijou to suck (and it did), but unlike K-ON or Lucky Star, it actually seemed like it was trying really hard not to suck. I gave Nichijou more leeway than originally intended and honestly rooted for it to get better. Then I saw Nichijou’s version of the chocolate cornet scene.

This was a rare instance when I could actually dig up the exact date of The END DAY.

Four episodes, one minute, and 18 seconds of Nichijou aside, I haven’t seen anything from Kyoto Animation in over five years. My life hasn’t gotten any worse.

The first minute and 16 seconds of Nichijou episode 5 are still the worst thing I've ever seen in my life

  1. Vaguely remember the final season of Nodame being better than Paris, but it seems I’ve got it rated lower anyway. Oh well.

    And yeah Nichijou was awful, the worst kind of comedy. As for Kyo-ani, the only worthwhile thing they’ve done since is arguably Hyouka. It’s quite divisive though, you might find it dull.

    • The reviews on the major sites I checked showed a slight drop in review scores from Season 1 to 2 and 2 to 3. All were still rated fairly high though.

      Doubt I’ll watch Hyouka, got too much on my To-Watch list as it is.

  2. Nichijou was mostly just further proof that all KyoAni can do well is animate (not that we needed more evidence). I guess they can also pander to their base properly, if we consider Free and Chuunibyou, but that’s just damning them with faint praise.

    Paris-hen is fine. Never understood why people are so harsh on the rest of Nodame Cantabile so much. Guess the first season was just too good or something. It’s the middle chapter of an anime about people trying to break into the classical music scene, with a frustrating romance in the background. If you expected anything but career-building and romantic frustration then you probably didn’t pay much attention to the first season.

    • The consensus on Paris-hen reviews seems to be that it’s fine. But all those reviews are wrong. Frustrating romance is fine when it doesn’t quite go anywhere, as in season 1. I didn’t even ship Nodame x Chiaki back then. I just saw them as two people who were good for each other as human beings but not necessarily as a couple. Then came that less-than-half-assed kiss in season 2 just to push the relationship along. It was frustrating in all the wrong ways. I didn’t hate the career building from what I recall. It just wasn’t engrossing.

  3. Oh yeah Nichijou. The problem I had with it was that the jokes were so drawn out. So I didn’t find the joke funny (very common) I just wasted 2 minutes of my time, rather than 20 seconds.

    The last KyoAni show I thought was good was Hyouka, which was done in 2012, so only two years ago. And I really liked it. Probably because I identified with the main character so much. Also I love those kind of detective shows, even though it’s more of a slice of life with detective elements.

    Never really heard of Nodame Cantabile before. A josei music romance? Urgh. Not my kind of show at all.

    • Agreed. Why that moe desu scene needs to be longer than 20 seconds (or exist at all) is beyond me.

      Nodame Season 1 was excellent. The romance aspect was pretty tame, and the comedy was strong. The more I remember about it, the more I feel like rewatching it.

  4. I guess I’m in the minority, but I enjoyed Nichijou… or rather I’ve been looking for an anime to fill the void that Azumanga Daioh filled. The more I think about it, the more I can say that that show is the reason I watch shows with a bunch of high school girls. Nichijou satisfied that hole more so than most shows I’ve seen. Though I will acknowledge that if a joke was not that great, then you were in for it because often times a joke was a whole segment. But for every dry repetitive scene like the “Moe desu!” clip Baka showed us, we also get more interesting scenes like the Principal wrestling a deer. I will also say it has nothing on Nichibros, though. That show was basically what I hoped Kimi to Boku would be instead of it being a similar beast to Free: boring moe characters doing boring moe things, but now with 100% more guys. Nodame Cantabile was a show I fell in love with around the same time I was really getting into Honey and Clover. As someone who spent about 13 years playing the Cello, I could dig a show that did music justice. Paris was a bit slow, I will give you that. I never finished it. I got about half way through before other things took priority.

  5. Finally someone who doesn’t like Nichijou! It was one of the worst over-hyped comedies in my recent memory. Not to be confused with Danshi Koukousei no Nichijou which was the best comedy of the year, the director of School Rumble did not disappoint.

    • Man! I didn’t know that the director of School Rumble was in charge of Nichibros. That makes sense. I really liked that style of comedy. That was the show I latched onto and fell in love with before Azumanga Daioh and sparking my interest in high school comedies, so I guess it all comes full circle.

    • Don’t remember what else came out that year, so I’ll lazily agree with you. Nichibros was the best comedy of the year.

  6. Does the Haruhi movie not count or something? Because I see you’ve watched it on your MAL and that was a little before Nichijou came out. As for KyoAni itself, I’ve mostly written off anything from them that isn’t by the Full Metal Panic team (this includes Hyouka). And even then, that’s not a guarantee. Their new show of the season is by said team and author and, well, it looks kinda twee.

    And yeah, the Nodame sequels are crap. I kinda liked ’em more when I first saw them, but they lost their appeal over the years.

    • Are you referring to Amagi Brilliant Park? That show looks like they are trying to recapture some of the sharp interactions and fun that occurred in Full Metal Panic and Haruhi. The jury is still out on if they may be trying a bit TOO hard to the point to where it comes across a bit forced. At least that’s how some of the scenes felt to me. Episode two is out so I’ll keep watching. If I finished shows like Shiawase no Pan and Wizard Barista Barrister (probably would be a more interesting story) then I can keep up with Amagi for a while. But I am watching a whole host of things that are currently way more interesting so hopefully it can keep up. Twee can be used describe a lot of anime these days… and KyoAni in particular. I understand that they need to make money to grease the wheels, but even prostitutes take a break.

  7. I would only criticize Paris-hen as not being nearly as outstanding as the first season, but I loved it, it helps that I enjoy classical music. For me Nodame is about the music and the difficulties the characters have in pursuing this career. About KyoAni, for me Hyouka was their finest work (previously to me it was Haruhi), but no idea if you would agree, we have very different preferences.

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