Starting tonight, CJAS will be showing a new romantic comedy series called Marmalade Boy. This series features Miki Koishikawa, a high school girl, into whose life "love" has just entered. This series unfolds almost entirely through Miki's eyes. It features her relationships with her friends and the people for whom she has romantic feelings, and vice versa. Her thoughts and feelings are detailed throughout every situation she faces. The series also touches upon the situations of the friends around her and manages to pack in enough twists and turns to keep you dying to see what happens next.
I started watching this series last semester. I kept hearing some of my CJAS friends mention Marmalade Boy, and I had to find out what it was. After seeing the first 2 episodes, I was VERY turned off from the series. I almost refused to watch any more, and I almost never came back to it.... For some reason, I forced myself to watch just a few more episodes on the off-chance that it might improve. I started becoming interested in the series after the 4th episode. Past the 8th episode, I was totally hooked. (In fact, I couldn't get MB tapes fast enough to feed my newfound addiction.) However, my initial reaction to Marmalade Boy may not be your own. You might start liking it immediately. But if you do indeed find yourself going "What the heck is this? Why am I watching it?", I strongly urge you to hang in for a few more episodes and give it a chance. You might actually develop a liking for the series, as I did.
The best description of Marmalade Boy that I can come up with is that it's a teenage soap opera, but don't let that general description color your view. I am a firm believer in the idea that Marmalade Boy has something for everyone. Whether it's the humor in Marmalade Boy that catches your eye, the great character development that gets you hooked, or the story that plays itself out, you will probably find something that endears you to the series. Some people have even noted that for them, it is the way Miki's emotions are accurately and honestly portrayed, without any bias and in every situation and circumstance she finds herself, that is most responsible for their intense liking of the series.
The series itself is very new. (It only concluded in Japan about 16 months ago.) While the writers originally targeted a junior high school girl audience, the show rapidly developed a strong male following in Japan. (This show also now has gathered a very strong male following in the US.) While this show can't simply be a replacement for the romantic comedy series Maison Ikkoku, which we finished up last semester, it has an appeal all its own. For those of you who have seen either Kimagure Orange Road or Maison Ikkoku and enjoyed them, I'm fairly certain you will also come to like Marmalade Boy.