Full Moon Sagashite and Hello! Project

Filed in Cult Of Pop 2.0

It was a slow week for comics and, as I was looking for something extra to read, Anthony at Last Sanctuary suggested a manga: Full Moon Sagashite by Tanemura Arina. Anthony liked the anime and, knowing I enjoyed Shojo Beat, figured this was right up my alley.

So I read it on the way to work yesterday and in the first chapter, there was a creator’s note stating that the main character Mitsuki’s hairstyle is based on Kago Ai. Then I found mentions of Matsuura Aya in the notes, including an incident involving the proper placement of “Love Namidairo” on a mix CD. It quickly became clear: Tanemura and some of her assistants are Hello! Project fans. This was further confirmed by a gag strip at the end of the volume, with shout-outs to Morning Musume in general, as well as Gocchin, Nacchi, and Kago.

At first I didn’t see the Kago hairstyle on Mitsuki – but pictures from Kago’s earlier years seem to indicate what Tanemura meant. Kago was such a cutie back then too, wasn’t she?

The manga itself is enjoyable. Mitsuki, is a 12-year-old girl, orphaned and with a tumor in her throat. Though her voice is weak, she wants to be a singer because she loves Eichi, a boy who moved to America. Mistuki’s grandmother opposes singing of all sort, but two death spirits help Mitsuki enter a singing contest by turning her into a healthy 16-year-old with no vocal problems. Under the name Full Moon, she becomes a Jpop idol and faces the rigors of the geinou industry, helped by the death spirits – a combination of deus ex machina and comedic relief – and facing a rivalry against another potential idol, Madoka.

Full Moon Sagashite is fun and I’ll be trying out the second volume. H!P shout-outs may not be enough to keep me reading, but the premise is fun and if the series continues to deal with the idol industry, that’ll keep my interest.


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5 Responses to “Full Moon Sagashite and Hello! Project”
  1. niji says:

    That sounds interesting. I’ll check out the animé instead of the manga though. A story about singing told on paper doesn’t really sound that much fun to me. And I’ve never really been that much of a manga fan anyway — no motion and no colors. 🙂

  2. Chuck says:

    Having seen the shows my sister watches on Nickelodeon, a story about singing told on TV sounds even worse.

  3. Jarret says:

    This is supposedly really popular among the Shoujo crowd. I was shocked that it took so long for it to be licensed in the US because it has such a huge fanbase. I like the darker Shoujo (like CLAMP’s X and Tokyo Babylon), and this seems to cheesy for me.

  4. Wapiko says:

    Everytime I see advertisements for that manga in Shojo Beat, they never make any mention of Mitsuki being terminally ill. And then I think “Did I really hear it from the right person?” Because I did originally read that she did have cancer in her throat (just like yorico) and then I read something that almost dispels it and I go whaaaaat?

    o_O; Anyway. Ramble. Sorry.

  5. Alice says:

    Wapiko: She does have a disease and the operation to cure it will remove her vocal chords in the manga, so you’re right. I don’t think they advertise it because knowing you’re going to read about a girl with throat cancer probably doesn’t sell many books.