Story/Art: Keiichi Arawi
Translation/Adaptation: Jenny McKeon
What They Say
Mio finally has her dream come true. Ms Nakamura ends up in a nightmare situation after discovering the shinonome lab. The Princess goes on a rampage to recover wood cubes. Mai makes a new friend, and Mio makes a heartbreaking discovery that propels her to learn something important about life…
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
As we move into the second half of the series and what it offers, Nichijou is at an interesting place at this point. This volume arrived in Japan in early 2011 and has a bundled OAD with it that gave us our first look at the Kyoto Animation series with some of the stories adapted. Reading it now, and having access to it with the new Funimation release of the TV series and OAD, definitely colors things as I read this after watching the show again for the first time in almost six years. The manga is its own experience and is most definitely the source of everything but I do find myself drawn to the anime adaptation more in a lot of ways. But there are so many neat little things to the manga that it’s hard to resist.
The big chapter early on is Nakamura finally making her way to Shononome Laboratories where she’s hoping to figure out what’s going on. Of course, she’s comically thwarted by her own reactions at the start when she first meets Biscuit and is then made worse when Nano sees her and invites her in. The friendliness is Nano’s biggest weapon in a way while Nakamura is just so over excited and spastic that she’s a mess. So when she does actually meet the Professor and has to grapple with the reality of who created Nanao it’s almost too much. The dynamic between the trio, never mind Biscuit and what Sakamoto brings to the table, is just delightful and left me grinning from ear to ear even if Nakamoto’s internal dialogue was just a bit too heavy to keep the flow going right.
Naturally, there are a bunch of short four-panel pieces and one-off segments as well as an amusing Fey Kingdom installment that always feels very surreal. There’s also a wonderful chapter that has Sakurai going into Makoto’s room to ask him what he wants for dinner but she gets caught up in the dirty magazine he has in there, which when he returns sends him into a tizzy. The dynamic between the two is simply adorable, especially with his overreactions. The best for me is the chapter where Sakamoto goes to have a serious talk with Nano and the Professor and the Professor starts it off by copying everything Sakamoto says and then going into crazy rhyming bits that just sends Sakamoto into a near rage as he’s ready to just claw her out. It’s a simple series of gags but the way it escalates so quickly is delightful.
Nichijou continues to be a delight to read, though one that I find works best if I read it in small chunks over a couple of weeks in order to savor it and not be quite so overwhelmed by it. Arawi’s art style has so much going on throughout that it’s definitely worth going through just an individual chapter and soaking it up for all that it does and all that you may miss with a first read through. This volume was a big one in Japan with the way it brought out the first OVA so it’s definitely a treat to read it now just as we’re finally getting the chance to own it and the TV series. Vertical has done another top notch job here that delivers a lot of fun and silliness that we’ve come to expect and are still very delighted by.
Content Grade: B+
Art Grade: B+
Packaging Grade: B
Text/Translation Grade: B+
Age Rating: All Ages
Released By: Vertical Comics
Release Date: January 10th, 2017