Nozaki-kun is a very good show. I love the manga and I loved the adaptation as well. The anime did a fantastic job capturing what makes the manga so good (the amazing VA cast certainly helped with that).
If I wanted to list my favorite moments, I might as well have just linked to the wikipedia episode list since you know basically EVERYTHING WAS HILARIOUS AND AMAZING. So, I am just going to try and talk a little about the characters I guess.
I think the core thing that made Nozaki-kun work was how serious he was for doing silly things. Nozaki-kun was stoic and serious about everything he does. This seriousness meant that he was willing to go to some extreme lengths for the sake of improving his manga.
His desire to setup shoujo like situations (e.g. movie date between Waka and Seo) or his reaction when presented with a useful reference never got old.
Chiyo is kind of meant to be the most normal character in this show. Most of the time, when she is not near Nozaki, she is pretty normal and is generally just an accessory (a very good accessory mind you) to the eccentricity of everyone else. Put Sakura near Nozaki or simply mention the guy and well….
Hilarity ensues. It is really funny how she understands Shoujo tropes so well, but can’t help but fall prey to them herself.
Mikorin is great. He is the best boy (and a possible contender for best girl as well….). He just makes everything better.
You know what makes the interactions between Nozaki and Sakura better? Mikorin.
You know what makes Kashima’s love for Hori and Hori’s tough love routine better? Mikorin.
You know what makes Seo’s bullying of Waka better? Mikorin.
You know what makes Mikorin better? More Mikorin.
You know what makes this show better? Mikorin.
The humor that came from Kashima was two fold. Kashima’s incredibly handsome, charismatic features lead to hilarity when all the girls fell for her or when she was mistaken as someone’s boyfriend. The other humor that came from Kashima was from her less cool side. Namely the side of her that focused solely on playing with Hori-senpai and it was hilarious. Kashima’s obsession with impressing senpai while doing her best to play with him was very entertaining.
Hori-senpai reminds me of Nozumi in that he is very serious. He is so serious about the drama club, he drags Kashima all over the place and is constantly thinking of how to exploit Kashima’s unique traits. Him and Sakura are also surprisingly petty.
I will remember Waka for two things. First, and most importantly, he was a dartboard for Seo’s abuse. The more we got to see Seo bully Waka, the more entertained we were.
The other memorable thing about Waka is his penchant for being influenced real easily and being misunderstood. Go watch episode 6 again. That rooftop scene as well as everything leading up to it is priceless.
Seo is just amazing. She is my favorite character in this show. Her domineering, “I take no shit, but deal lots of it” attitude (an attitude built up by an amazing voice actress) is hilarious and oh so very entertaining.
I think Nozaki-kun was supposed to make fun of anime romance, but the characters were so good together, they had to be shipped.
Nozaki x Sakura
The main ship is the only one where at least one of the constituents knows for sure they are in love. That is to say, Sakura is very well aware that she is head over heels in love with Nozaki-kun. Nozaki-kun on the other hand…well, forget knowing if he likes her or not, he may very well be totally indifferent towards her.
Sakura’s unrequited love leads to all kinds of hilarious situations. At first, any and everything Nozaki did would be misinterpreted by her as him showing affection, but that quickly changed. By the end, Sakura had learned to never get her hopes her, because at the end of the day, Nozaki is just a shoujo artist whose day to day antics often intentionally or unintentionally mirror those of his characters.
Or maybe Sakura’s assessment that he only thinks of her as a friend was wrong…
Hori x Kashima
These two are hilarious together. The source of Kashima’s love for Hori-senpai is a mystery and the source of Hori-senpai’s boundless energy (needed to deal with Kashima) is also a mystery.
Seo x Waka
Every domineering Queen requires a pedestal to step upon and a chair to sit upon. Waka is both Seo’s pedestal and her chair.
Waka’s existence and subsequent bullying at Seo’s whim allows for Seo to truly shine and take over. I love seeing him get tossed around by Seo.
If only because I can insert myself into his place as I also wish to be stepped upon and berated by Seo.
Waka, I am so sorry I threw you under the Seo bus, but her laughter as she runs you over is worth the sacrifice.
(In all seriousness, there is a bit more to this dynamic duo than Seo’s one sided abuse. I like to think that Seo actually does care for Waka in some way and teasing him all day is one way she expresses this. Waka himself doesn’t realize it, but Seo is Lorelei and he is in love with Lorelei. Waka also tends to convince himself that he is looking out for everyone else when he engages Seo, but I like to think he is looking out for her as well.)
This is likely my favorite ship in this show.