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Kanamemo (かなめも?) is a Japanese four-panel comic strip written and illustrated by Shoko Iwami (石見翔子?). The strip has been serialized in Houbunsha's seinen manga magazine Manga Time Kirara Max since June 19, 2007. It is about Kana Nakamichi and her growing experience as a newspaper deliverer, cook, and orphan.

The anime adaptation premiered in Japan on July 5, 2009 by Feel Studios.[1]

Plot

The story centers on Kana Nakamichi, a middle-school girl who had already lost her parents and just recently lost her only remaining relative, her grandmother. As a result, she ends up living and working at a newspaper delivery office. Everyone else living at the office are all charming, self-assertive bishōjo.

The manga follows Kana’s daily life in the fast-paced yet joyous environment.

Characters

Kana Nakamachi (中町 かな Nakamachi Kana?)

Voiced by: Aki Toyosaki

Kana is the main protagonist of the story. Kana is a young girl of thirteen years old. She is willing to prove herself to do what she needs, but is often unsure about her abilities. She has lost her parents prior to the events of the story, to events that have yet been explained. As such, she has been living with her grandmother ever since she was little. Just prior to the series, her grandmother also died, resulting in Kana living alone. While Kana is trying to cope with the loss, collectors arrive at Kana's home and start carrying out furniture. When Kana asks them what they are doing, they say they "were told to remove all of the old lady's things". Kana believes this includes her as well, and she panics, grabs as many things she can fit in a backpack, and runs away. Looking for a new place to live, she ended up at a newspaper distribution center, Fuhshin Gazette, where the series takes place.
Kana is a particularly soft spoken and shy girl who also gets frightened a lot, particularly in the presence of Haruka. She also tends to generally overreact to things she doesn't quite understand and frequently misinterprets them. Having lost her grandma, she sometimes gets rather lonely whenever she thinks about when she may inevitably have to leave the Fuhshin Gazette.
Saki Amano (天野 咲妃 Amano Saki?)

Voiced by: Kaoru Mizuhara

Saki is the assistant chief of Fuhshin Gazette, despite still being in grade school. She is the only "serious" one of the group, and frequently reprimands the other girls when they neglect their duties. However, she often helps Kana with her problems, including stepping in when Haruka becomes too invasive, and is also prone to giving spontaneous rewards to everyone else, even though she always justifies her actions in the format of "We were (fill in the blank), anyway." Although having a mental disposition of a mature adult, she is still able to act like a child of her age when the situation calls for it; when interacting with her classmates at school, she is the stereotypical schoolgirl, usually so she can get the other children's parents to subscribe for the Fuhshin Gazette.
Yume Kitaoka (北岡 ゆめ Kitaoka Yume?)

Voiced by: Ryou Hirohashi

Yume works at the Fuhshin Gazette. For the most part, she is carefree and consistently in a good mood, sometimes to the point of annoyance in people around her. She is a student at a patisserie academy, and, whenever cooking, often adds far too much sugar than what the recipe calls for (such as when she added two bags of sugar to a dish of curry). She and Yuuki are a couple, albeit an odd one. She is obsessed with doing everything with Yuuki, and is severely disappointed when they are denied the opportunity.
Yuuki Minami (南 ゆうき Minami Yūki?)

Voiced by: Aya Endo

Yuuki works at the Fuhshin Gazette. Her emotional state is usually placid, except when Yume is doing something with someone else without her. She and Yume share an expressive yuri love, and they are never shy to show it, to the point when Kana sees them kissing, she decides to look for employment elsewhere. When it comes to Yume's affections, Yuuki is very territorial; whenever Yume does something fun or shares an exciting conversation with someone else, Yuuki get's extremely jealous and emits an aura of dejection until Yume notices and includes her in the events. She uses Keigo excessively (even towards Kana, who is considered to be her kouhai).
Haruka Nishida (西田 はるか Nishida Haruka?)

Voiced by: Yui Horie

Haruka works at Fuhshin Gazette. She is an avid drinker of sake, and as such is often drunk. While intoxicated, she will often make advances on any other woman, though she has a particular fondness for young, cute girls (such as Kana and Saki). It is for this reason that Kana fears her greatly. She attends college, studying bio-fermentation, and creates numerous different beverages from biologic substances (the resulting concoction almost always being alcoholic). She frequently tests these on the others of Fuhshin Gazette.
Hinata Azuma (東 ひなた Azuma Hinata?)

Voiced by: Eri Kitamura

Hinata works at Fuhshin Gazette. She is rather carefree, and likes to gamble or invest through various means, such as Horseracing and the stock market, but is otherwise hesitant about spending money on things such as cotton candy at a festival, claiming it to be "just a bunch of sugar". She has attempted to join a college numerous times, but has failed entrance exams twice, with a third failure being predicted frequently by the others. She is nice to Kana, occasionally helping her. Interesting of note is her unique usage of the masculine pronoun "I" ("boku") when referring to herself, where a female Japanese speaker would usually refer to herself using "watashi" or the more feminine "atashi".
Mika Kujiin (久地院 美華 Kujiin Mika?)

Voiced by: Rie Kugimiya

Mika is a newspaper deliverer at another center, although she won't admit it unless directly confronted. She is quick to blame others, and frequently turns her mistakes into inconveniences. When she becomes lost during a route, she literally runs into Kana, then forgives her by "allowing" her to escort her to her next stop. In the third episode, she and Kana become friends. She seems to have a crush on Kana, and gets riled up at the thought of Kana having a boyfriend.
Marimo (まりも Marimo?)

Voiced by: Mikako Takahashi

Marimo is a minor character who appears in the eighth and twelfth episodes. She is a former Fuhshin Gazette employee before she graduated from college, and has a reputation as the worst employee the newspaper company ever had. Nevertheless, she was well liked by everyone. She and Saki shared a special friendship; they were so close that Saki started calling her nee-san (big sister), which the rest of the Fuhshin staff picked up, as well. Marimo was the first person with whom Saki had truly opened up and revealed her true feelings (and as far as the series has shown, the only person).
Before the events of the anime (roughly the most recent spring season), the day before Marimo's graduation, there was a snow storm with record low temperatures, and on that day Marimo was late returning home. Hinata offered to look for her, and recruited the others to do the same (although tactfully omitting Haruka from the search). She found Marimo's bike crashed by the river, with stacks of newspaper rolls leading to the water's edge. Saki, upon hearing this, ran into the storm to search for her, eventually getting herself lost. Marimo then finds Saki at the place where the bike crash was, where it was revealed that Marimo was merely searching for a lost kitten. Saki berates her for making her worry, and they share an embrace.
Currently in the story, she lives off of odd jobs, such as selling vegetables in the flea market for outrageously cheap prices. When she is not working, she will, according to her words, "go where the wind takes her, where her mood takes her".

Non-Human Characters

Bunta (ぶんた Bunta?)
Bunta is a stray cat that hangs around the Fuhshin Gazette. She is treated as a member of the family, and is often a form of encouragement for Kana.
It is later revealed that Bunta is actually the same cat that Marimo was trying to find on the night she got lost.
Kaniko Echizen (越前 かにこ Echizen Kaniko?)
Kaniko isn't really an actual character. Really, he is a robot seen occasionally as a transition effect. Usually comical in nature, he will spin across the foreground, with the scene changing behind him. This type of transition is also used in the OVA series Kissxsis, which is also produced by Feel (only here the transition is done by either one of the twin sisters). Some of the things he says are a parody of the previous scene, while others have no relevance with the show at all.
Kaniko has appeared in almost every episode thus far.

Manga

The following three volumes are released:

<tr style="border-bottom: 3px solid #CCF"><th style="width: 4%;">No.</th><th style="width: 48%;">Release date</th><th style="width: 48%;"> ISBN</th></tr> <tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol1">1</td></td><td> September 2008[2]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8322-7725-0</td></tr> <tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol2">2</td></td><td> April 2009[3]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8322-7791-5</td></tr> <tr style="text-align: center;"><td id="vol3">3</td></td><td> October 2009[4]</td><td>ISBN 978-4-8422-7844-8</td></tr> </table>

Episode list

# Episode title Original air date[5]
01 My First Time, All Alone...
"Hajimete no, Hitoribocchi..." (はじめての、ひとりぼっち…)
July 5, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
When Kana's late grandmothers possessions are taken, Kana runs away from home. She searches for a place to stay and get a job, and finds Fuhshin Shinbun with a "help wanted" ad. After witnessing the other workers' bizarre habits, she sets off to find another possible venue. After spending a day being unable to find one, Yume crashes into her with her bike. When Kana is nursed back to health, she accepts her desperation and asks for the job.
02 My First Paper Delivery
"Hajimete no, Shinbun Haitatsu" (はじめての、新聞配達)
July 12, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
Kana begins her career at Fuhshin Shinbun by going on her first paper run. However, this is marred by the fact that she does not know how to ride a bike. Later, after Saki allows her to do her run on foot, she gets stuck in the rain, and seeks shelter. While there, she meets Mika, a delivery girl from another newspaper, who has become lost during the rain. On returning to the store, she is congratulated on a successful first run.
03 My First Smile
"Hajimete no, Sumairu" (はじめての、スマイル)
July 19, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
Kana starts going to summer classes and finds that Mika has joined the class. Saki explains to Kana about how her smile helps get subscribers, but when Kana tries to smile, the results are horrifying. She later introduces Mika to Saki, who is not too impressed that she is from a rival newspaper. She decides to have Kana tag along Mika's subscriber hunt, using her smile to scare off potential subscribers. After a string of failures, Mika decides to help Kana practice her smile. After getting a satisfactory one, they still end up not getting any subscribers but manage to become friends on a first name basis. Kana shows her new smile to her co-workers, who find it hilarious.
04 My First Day at the Pool
"Hajimete no, Pūru" (はじめての、プール)
July 26, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
A musical episode. Inspired by coupons for a water park that Saki confiscates, the gang decide to shop for swimsuits. Yume buys one for Kana so they could all go together. However, their hopes are dashed when they are reminded by Saki that they have different days off. As a compromise, Yume suggests that they do their work in their swimsuits to keep the spirit. Whilst Kana deals with embarrassment, the others use their assets to gain subscribers. Mika decides to follow suit to catch up with the competition and inspires Kana to conquer her embarrassment. As a thanks for getting many subscribers, Saki finds a garden pool for the girls to swim in.
05 My First Time at the Bath with Everyone
"Hajimete no, Minna de Ofuro" (はじめての、みんなでお風呂)
August 2, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
As a typhoon hits the city, the gang make a bunch of teru teru bozu to ward off the weather, even making a big one. During the eye of the storm, they decide go to a public bath house, along with Mika, it being her first time. Despite occasional harassment from Haruka, Kana and Mika enjoy their stay. However, by the end, the eye has passed and they end up being shut in.
06 My First Ghost Story
"Hajimete no, Kowai Hanashi" (はじめての、恐い話)
August 9, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
The episode picks off where the previous one ended, with everyone trying to get back to the shop through the typhoon. On the way back, they pick up Mika, who has been stranded in the storm. While they are trying to board up the shop to last through the storm, however, the power goes out. Everyone ends up huddled around a table with several candles on it. They then alternate telling ghost stories until Kana desperately shouts she needs to go to the bathroom. Afterward, she gets everyone to accompany her to her room, where they are all touched on the legs by an unknown presence. When the power comes back on, it turns out to be one of many cats that have taken shelter in Kana's room. The episode ends with Kana feeling she is truly happy working at Fuhshin Shinbun.
07 My First Welcome
"Hajimete no, Omukae" (はじめての、お迎え)
August 16, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
On the day of the Obon, the newspapers have a holiday. Everyone at Fuhshin Shinbun decides to celebrate the Obon by holding a ceremony honoring Kana's grandmother, who died just prior to the events of the series. After the ritual, Saki lent Kana a kimono, and the group went to the Obon festival, where they were each given a 1000 yen spending limit. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves - Kana demonstrated her prowess to Haruka and Saki at the goldfish scoop, and Yuuki and Yume had a romantic night. Later, Kana tripped over a small child, then, as repayment, she gave the child treats and accompanied her around the festival. After separating from the child, Kana then tripped over Saki, then woke up to find everyone staring at her on the ground. It is unclear as to whether or not the child was real or a dream.
08 My First Talk About Memories
"Hajimete no, Omoidebanashi" (はじめての、思い出話)
August 23, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
The gang recall about a girl named Marimo who worked at Fuhshin Shinbun until a year ago. Despite being the worst employee ever in Saki's eyes, the others had the feeling Saki was pretty attached to her. A while back going a snowy day, Hinata searches for Marimo only to find her bike crashed and a pile of newspapers leading to the river. Hearing the news, Saki goes out in search for her, and she is eventually found by Marimo. Embarrassed by the story, Saki gives everyone a pay cut. When Kana hears that Marimo left after that day, she becomes concerned about when she'll have to leave too. Meanwhile, Saki still has fond memories of Marimo.
09 My First Diet?
"Hajimete no, Daietto?" (はじめての、ダイエット?)
August 30, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
Kana is shocked to find she's gained weight. Saki initially decides to support her on taking a diet after making the same realization about herself, until Haruka reveals to Saki that she's simply growing. Instead, Yume, Yuki and Hinata decide to help her. Hinata gives her a dog costume so she would burn off some extra fat during her rounds, but gets in trouble with a dog called Jon. After being rescued by Mika, they run into Jon's owner, Sacchan, a friend of Kana's, who asks her to look after him for the day. Yume, Yuki, Hinata and Mika also decide to help and take Jon to the park. Jon grows quite attached to Mika, who gradually becomes less afraid of him. She tells Kana about how she used to have a dog, but had to leave her behind when she moved. Mika feels a bit of loneliness when she has to return Jon to his owner, but feels happy in the knowledge that her old dog is being treated the same way. Kana, however, has completely forgotten about her diet.
10 My First Feelings
"Hajimete no, Kimochi" (はじめての、気持ち)
September 6, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
Kana returns from her morning run to find Yume going off in a limo, leaving behind some cookies. She is told by the others that she is from a noble family and went home. Yuki appears to be taking it pretty hard, and Kana can't help by make assumptions about what's really happening. This leads her to become paranoid around anything that might upset Yuki. However, she soon finds out that Yuki had been crying because she had kept putting off going to a dentist and Yume had just gone to a memorial service. However, the whole ordeal has made Kana feel a bit lonely herself. The next morning, she encounters Mika and after buying some soup, she feels better.
11 My First Time Nursing
"Hajimete no, Kanbyō" (はじめての、看病)
September 13, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
As rainy weather settles in, Yuki catches a fever. When Yume takes over her shift, she ends up overworking herself and getting sick as well. They decide to 'sweat it off' and become better in the morning. However, later that day Saki catches a fever instead, so Kana decides to look after her. Soon afterwards though, she catches it as well, losing her voice in the process. She has nightmares about the others leaving her behind, though wakes up to find Saki sleeping next to her. Kana wonders if she is simply being protected by the others.
12 The First Person
"Hajimete no, Hito" (はじめての、ひと)
September 20, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
The gang participate in a flea market in order to raise money for an air conditioner. Kana is still feeling a bit lonely when tales about Marimo spring up. When Kana is asked to get change during the lunch break, Mika offers to help out at her booth. Just then, Kana bumps into Marimo, and ends up having to help her sell vegetables. After selling all the goods at a cheap price, Marimo leads Kana to a special viewing point under an olive tree, where Marimo alleviates some of Kana's fears. Despite not getting Marimo's name, Kana returns with a smile on her face, albeit facing several paycuts for skipping work.
13 And, The First...
"Soshite, Hajimete no..." (そして、はじめての…)
September 27, 2009 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
As the Fushin Gazette prepares to interview newcomers, Kana attempts to learn how to ride a bike so she can be a good senpai. This causes Mika to become curious of why she arrives at school later and leaves quickly afterwards. Kana later spots Mika learning to ride a bike by riding a child's springed animal. They decide to compete to decide who is the 'best cyclist in their hearts', though this leads Mika to become jealous of a supposed boyfriend (who was actually Kana's pet fish). Noticing she has almost filled her diary, Kana decides to look back on it before going to buy a new one in the morning. She finds a cute pink one, but it's priced at 2980 yen, and she refuses to let Yume pay for it. The gang devise a plan involving making her do menial chores as an excuse to give her the amount required as a bonus. Kana buys the diary and gets ready to greet the newcomers.

Theme songs

Opening theme
君へとつなぐココロ (Kimi e to Tsunagu Kokoro)
Ending theme
YAHHO!!

Release

The anime adaption of Kanamemo was announced in the March 2009 issue of Houbunsha's Manga Time Kirara Max magazine, and premiered on July 5, 2009 in Japan as well as crunchyroll.com[6][7]. Some segments, such as the showing of panties or nudity, were censored for the TV broadcast. The first uncensored DVD was released on October 7, 2009.[8]

References

  1. "Kanamemo Four-Panel Manga Gets Anime Green-Lit". Anime News Network. 2009-01-17. Retrieved 2009-07-18. 
  2. Script error
  3. Script error
  4. Script error
  5. "Kanamemo Episode List at Anime News Network". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2009-07-18. 
  6. "Kanamemo is Latest Simulcast Addition on Crunchyroll". Anime News Network. 2009-07-20. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  7. "Crunchyroll Adds Third Summer Simulcast to Site". OtakuReview.net. 2009-07-03. Retrieved 2009-08-28. 
  8. Amazon.co.jp Kanamemo DVD (Japanese)

External links

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