Characters: Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun
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A high school-student who is the object of Sakura's affection and also writes a shoujo manga under the pen name Sakiko Yumeno. Because of Sakura's talent with art, he recruits her as one of his assistants. Despite writing romantic stories, he has no real experience with love, mistaking Sakura's confession for an autograph request.
- Adorkable: Nozaki's character being a strange mishmash of stoicism and expressiveness, not to mention having some of the most unpredictable behaviors and quirks, can make him strangely endearing.
- Bad Bad Acting: When he tries to act as a stand-in for a role during the drama club's rehearsal, his lines are delivered in monotone and his falling looks completely fake.
- Bastard Boyfriend: Unwittingly develops this reputation among Miyako's classmates, who assume that he's dating her and constantly cheating on her and forcing his fetishes upon her due to misunderstanding their manga discussions.
- Berserk Button: He absolutely hates Maeno.
- Brutal Honesty: Pretty much always shamelessly says what he thinks.
- Cassandra Truth: He doesn't treat his job as a secret, but nobody at school believes he is a professional mangaka.
- The Comically Serious: He can say and do the oddest things completely stone faced.
- Face of a Thug: He occasionally comes to school looking pissed off and covered in bandages. Everyone thinks he might've been fighting, but that's how Sakura knows that he's been on deadline. The "bandages" are pain patchesnote and the pissed-off look was just inadequate sleep.
- Gentle Giant: Despite his 190cm height, Face of a Thug and athletic build, he is completely harmless if only a little bit dense and stoic.
- Hands in Pockets: In-universe. He mentioned in Chapter 24 that due to his lack of skills at drawing backgrounds and perspective, a lot of his early work (one-shots and contest entries and so on) used as few backgrounds as possible and covered this with close-ups and manga effects. Storylines are also designed to minimize the need to draw backgrounds.
- Hunk: He is this in comparison to the other male characters who fit the bishonen look. He actually despairs at this since shoujo manga readers generally prefer bishonen to this trope, so he can't use himself as a model for drawing. To top this trope off, he is quite athletic (ask Wakamatsu for that), he just left basketball because of work and to avoid a jammed finger.
- I Didn't Mean To Turn You On: He has moments when he acts quite boyfriend-like with Sakura (much to her delight) without him meaning to be or realizing the effect he has on her.
- Innocently Insensitive: He is guilty of this from time to time due to his blunt-spoken nature.
- Instant Book Deal: As a shojo mangaka his work is highly popular. This comes from a eleventh grader who, according to a backstory chapter, has been writing manga, commercially, before high school.
- This is talked about in-verse. It seems he won some awards early on in his career that helped give him the popularity he needed to get his own series. However, his young age and lack of formal art training also makes him terrible at certain things, and he's learning while on the job. For instance, he is so bad at backgrounds that he purposefully drew things at first that didn't need backgrounds. It's also why he needs people like Hori to help him with his work.
- The Knights Who Say Squee: Nozaki's admiration for his editor, "Ken-san", is pretty extreme. Nozaki's usually dull demeanor completely brightens up and he becomes very cheery and animated when he talks about Ken. It's pretty well justified considering how bad Nozaki's experience was with Maeno as an editor.
- Minor Living Alone: As shown in Chapter 33, Nozaki managed to convince his parents to let him move out and into his own apartment after his early success as a mangaka earned him enough money to do so without help from them.
- Most Writers Are Writers: He often writes plays for Hori in exchange of Hori drawing backgrounds for him.
- Moustache de Plume: Inverted; he uses a female Pen Name for his manga. Particularly funny because since the image his work projects is of a gentle, delicate, emotionally-sensitive woman, when in reality he's a blunt-spoken, somewhat abrasive high-school male who's never been in love in his life.
- Muscle Angst: As discussed in hunk, above, Nozaki regrets being too muscular since he can't self-model as bishonen.
- Non-Uniform Uniform: Averted. Nozaki stands out as the only person in the main cast who wears his school uniform strictly to code.
- Not So Different: As much as he's uncomfortable around her, Nozaki and Seo share quite a few similarities in terms of being oblivious and Innocently Insensitive. Chapter 55 even shows that when they're both on the same page their personalities reinforce each other's—to the annoyance of those around them.
- Oblivious to His Own Description: On more than one occasion, Nozaki has listened to Chiyo describe him as the person she likes, and each time he wonders what she sees in "a guy like that".
- Oblivious to Love: Zigzagged. As a Shoujo Genre author he is pretty perceptive when it comes to the other characters. For example, he notes that Hori is biased towards Kashima in certain instances, and quickly recognizes that Seo's behavior towards Wakamatsu isn't out of hostility. Ironically, however, he can't seem to figure out that Chiyo is crushing on him hard.
- Odd Friendship: With Mikoshiba. Sakura points out the two have very different personalities so it surprises her that they're friends. Nozaki admits he initially only took interest in him for character ideas.
- One Head Taller: To Chiyo, among other characters.
- Pen Name: He writes under the pseudonym 'Sakiko Yumeno'.
- Perpetual Frowner: Due to his stoic nature.
- Real Men Cook: He is a better cook than Sakura, much to her chagrin.
- Real Men Wear Pink: Writes shoujo manga, albeit with a female pseudonym. According to the mangaka he also has the most "feminine power" of all the males in the cast. Aside from his specializing in drawing shoujo manga, Nozaki excels at just about every domestic task.
- Sdrawkcab Name: He created his Pen Name partly by this trope. First, he dropped the masculine -taro suffix from his first name, then he reversed his first and last names (from "U-me-no-za-ki" to "Za-ki-u-me-no", then "Zaki Umeno"), added a feminine -ko suffix to the new first name, and at last changed two consonants to make a more natural name.
- Second Year Protagonist
- Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: He is the manly man who gives his advice and support (with, admittedly, mixed results) to the sensitive and naive Wakamatsu, who has been Nozaki's underclassman since middle school.
- Sequential Artist: Draws shoujo manga under a female pseudonym.
- Shipper on Deck: He is in a very roundabout way for Wakamatsu/Seo. He's very hostile to the idea of the relationship actually going anywhere due to his distaste for Seo and concern for Wakamatsu's well being, and yet he blatantly uses them as a model for a side couple in his manga.
- Significant Birth Date: 6 June, day of the Asian plum, or ume.
- Skewed Priorities: Nozaki sometimes prioritizes on the wrong things, much to the frustration of his assistants. The best example is when Hori tried to teach him how to draw backgrounds, where he tries to employ the use of boxes as an in-universe explanation for why the characters are somewhat taller in each panel.
- The Stoic: Is completely stone-faced about 80% of the time.
- Not So Stoic: When something does break his composure, he can be just as wildly expressive as the rest of the characters.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: When he fails to get Chiyo to model a sailor uniform, he attempts to try it on himself, but it doesn't fit because of his tall, muscular build. Naturally, this is for his manga work.
- The Workaholic: When Sakura asks him what he does on his days off, he lists mundane things such as cleaning his room and stocking up on his supplies and realizes he has been "taken into the world of people who have no free time". Then she tries to take him on a "date", but he can only think about his work.
Voiced by: Ari Ozawa (Anime) / Asuka Nishi (Drama CD)
Our protagonist, who is in love with Nozaki. She tries confessing to him at the beginning of the manga, only to be mistaken by him as a fan of his shoujo manga. Sakura then starts helping Nozaki as his manga assistant. She is in the art club.
- Ascended Fangirl: Nozaki thinks he's let her become this, since he mistakes her love confession as a fan's request to be his assistant and then immediately has her start helping him.
- Because You Were Nice to Me: Sakura fell for Nozaki because he helped her over the gate when she was late for her first day of school.
- Black Bead Eyes: She sometimes gets them, most often in either her clueless or excited moments.
- Cannot Spit It Out: She probably wouldn't even be Nozaki's assistant at all if she'd just told him she liked him instead of chickening out and saying she's his fan. Nozaki being Nozaki, of course, he took it the wrong way. She makes the same mistake the second time. Later, she states that she wants to make Nozaki fall for her and confess first because she's afraid that if she confesses again Nozaki will just use it to mine ideas for his manga.
- Covert Pervert: Sometimes her thoughts about Nozaki veer in this direction. She was also quite excited when Nozaki, Mikoshiba, and Wakamatsu lost their trunks at the beach.
- Crippling Overspecialization: On the contrary, Chiyo is an excellent and versatile artist... when she's drawing from real life. Chiyo can do relatively realistic rendering of people and animals but otherwise is only really good at drawing what she sees. She has difficulties visualizing backgrounds and buildings, and can't draw manga styles from memory either. When Nozaki asks her to try draw two characters from another manga standing next to his own, she draws them exactly as they looked in the reference pictures - in which one of them was sitting down and the other was playing an instrument, making the illustration look hilariously mismatched.
- The Cutie: Subverted. Her character design invokes this trope, with her being short, wearing ribbons on her hair and using a backpacknote , but unlike most examples she's one of the more sensible characters (most of the time, anyway) and tends to be the Straight Man to other characters' antics. She isn't exactly innocent either, considering her Covert Pervert tendencies and the fact that she was a Stalker with a Crush towards Nozaki for about a year after she first met him.
- Deadpan Snarker: Chiyo can sometimes slip into this, though she usually keeps it to herself.
- First Name Basis: With Seo.
- Genki Girl: Is quite excitable.
- Girl Friday: She is invaluable to Nozaki as an inker and as a friend. But she'd rather just be going out with him.
- Hair Decorations: Her red, polka-dotted bows. She used to wear a single white ribbon on the back of her head, note which became the inspiration for Mamiko's character design.
- Horrible Judge of Character: She has no clue why people seem to find Seo so annoying even when she sees her insult people or be the worst teammate ever.
- Iconic Item: She is identified primarily by her bows, and by extension their polka dot pattern, both in-universe and with the fandom.
- Insecure Love Interest: She sometimes goes into Clingy Jealous Girl mode when she imagines that Nozaki is thinking about or talking to other girls. Usually subverted in that if Nozaki shows interest in something, it's typically work-related, since he's always looking for ideas or references for his manga. Ironically it seems to frustrate her even more than if he was simply just interested in other girls.
- Nonuniform Uniform: More subtle than most examples in this series. Her blouse bow violates the Color Code for her grade; strictly speaking she should wear a red bow like Seo does.
- Not So Above It All: She's usually more levelheaded than Nozaki, but as the series goes on it's clear that she's pretty eccentric herself, and her love for Nozaki gets in the way of her rationality whenever their "relationship" is brought into question or seems to be in "jeopardy".
- Odd Friendship: With Yuzuki. Nozaki assumes it was as a result of an event in which they considered each other a Worthy Opponent after a fierce battle. However, they became friends solely because they sat near each other in previous classes.
- Older Than They Look: Standing 145cm tall, she is mistaken as an elementary or middle schooler.
- Only Sane Woman: Tends to switch this role around with Mikoshiba, depending on the situation. She's also got the most common sense compared to the other girls in the main cast.
- Second Year Protagonist
- Significant Birth Date: 27 March, the day of cherry blossoms, known in Japanese as "sakura".
- Single-Target Sexuality: In the official character bios, one section will list a character's "preferred type"; Sakura's only says "Nozaki". Chiyo says it herself in Chapter 22:
- Stalker with a Crush: She was this to Nozaki before the series began, to the point that she knew practically everything about him she could learn at school, and was collecting things he'd left behind.
- Straight Man: She's usually this to the other characters, especially Nozaki, but there are moments when her own quirks shine through.
- Supporting Protagonist
- Tareme Eyes: The only female among the main cast to have them. Fittingly, she's the most feminine out of all the main girls.
- Token Mini-Moe: The youngest looking character of the series and also the shortest.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: The girly girl to Seo's tomboy.
- Two First Names: Sakura is a common given name, but is exceedingly rare as a surname.
- Unmoving Plaid: Her polka-dot ribbons, at least in the anime.
- Weakness Turns Her On: Or at least Nozaki's.
- Zettai Ryouiki: She sports this style (grade A) when wearing the school uniform.
Mikoto "Mikorin" Mikoshiba
One of Nozaki's assistants, mainly responsible for drawing effects and details in the backgrounds and also the person Nozaki used as model for the heroine of his manga. Mikoshiba acts like a playboy but in reality is a shy guy, and is often spouting flirty lines around — only to immediately get embarrassed for having said them.
- Adorkable: So very much...
- Affectionate Nickname: "Mikorin", which Chiyo uses for his cuteness.
- Alliterative Name: His first and last names both start with "Miko". Doubles as a Repetitive Name.
- Attention Whore: Zig-Zagged. Mikoshiba is often looking to have his ego stroked and will become petulant if ignored, but if too much attention is paid to him he becomes overwhelmed and starts desperately looking for a way out.
- Big Brother Instinct: The character bio says he is the least shy with males younger than him like Wakamatsu and Mayu, because of this trope.
- Bishōnen: He's definitely very pretty, which lends well to his reputation as The Charmer.
- Cannot Talk to Women: Extremely awkward around girls, so the only way he can talk to them is by quoting cheesy lines from Dating Sims...which just makes him even more awkward and embarrassed.
- The Charmer: He wants to be this, and to the outside observer he certainly is. But unfortunately his habit of using Dating Sim quotes to hide the fact he's socially inept often leads to him charming his way into situations that he'd rather avoid.
- Chick Magnet: He's pretty popular with the girls, but always ends up embarrassing himself.
- Closet Geek: He usually hides his hobbies well, but has told Nozaki about them. The good thing is Chiyo doesn't seem to know the implication of bishoujo figurines...
- Crippling Overspecialization: Unlike Nozaki's other assistants, he is only good at drawing pretty flowers and Manga Effects in the background. When having a drawing contest with Nozaki and Chiyo, it becomes obvious he has no other artistic talents.
- Curtains Match the Window: He has red hair and red eyes.
- Digging Yourself Deeper: Mikoshiba just can't say "no" when it comes to girls he's unfamiliar with or when his image is in jeopardy. Too many times he winds up with obligations that he doesn't know how to handle and ends up begging his friends to help get him out of them.
- Even the Guys Want Him: Played for laughs in Chapter 47, where a bunch of guys fought over him so that they can use him to lure girls as well as his best friend Kashima into the room, which would ideally lure even more girls into their room.
- In episode 7 of the anime, even the male members of the art club are delighted when Mikoshiba promises to nude model for them.
- The Fashionista: Rare among otaku characters; character bios state he actually follows fashion magazines closely.
- Fiery Redhead: When he shows his tsun side.
- Freudian Excuse: Prior to the series' start he was actually terrible at talking to girls. But after buying and beating a dating sim, he got the idea that how the protagonist speaks in dating sims is the perfect guide to talk to girls in real life, no matter how terribly cheesy the lines are, and it's now become habit. However, once he realizes what he's just said, he's left deeply embarrassed.
- Gender-Blender Name: "Mikoto" is a unisex name, which befits a guy who was the inspiration for a shoujo heroine.
- Handsome Lech: Subverted. He acts like a shallow flirt around girls, but then he gets incredibly embarrassed even when they like it. He's too awkward to talk to girls normally most of the time.
- High-Pressure Emotion: He tends to get incredibly embarrassed after attempting to say something suave to girls.
- Inferiority Superiority Complex: He acts really proud and egotistical upon first meeting, but if people fail to respond in the way he wants he becomes increasingly clingy and desperate to be noticed. Chiyo quickly learns how to humor him.
- In-Series Nickname: Nozaki calls him "Mikorin" for his feminine traits, though never to his face. The only one who actually addresses him as "Mikorin" is Chiyo.
- Know-Nothing Know-It-All: He comes off as popular with the girls, and always seems to find the right thing to say to them, but is actually quite shy around them. Consequently he usually finds himself unable to hang out around them for anything longer than a short conversation.
- Like Brother and Sister: States that this is how he feels towards Chiyo, seeing her as a "little sister".
- Luminescent Blush: Is prone to blushing furiously almost immediately after he says something embarrassing.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: Platonically the feminine boy to Kashima's masculine girl, with Kashima being the popular prince charming bifauxnen and Mikoshiba essentially having the personality of a tsundere heroine, as pointed out by Nozaki.
- Nonuniform Uniform: He forgoes the blazer and tie, and his shirt is always left unbuttoned.
- Odd Friendship: With Nozaki. Sakura points out that the two have very different personalities so it surprises her that they're friends. Nozaki admits he initially only took interest in Mikoshiba for character ideas.
- One of the Boys: Gender-inverted. As seen in Chapter 47, when Hori complained that Nozaki looked out of place in a group of girls, but didn't notice at all that Mikoshiba was in the same group.
- Only Sane Man: Tends to switch this role around with Chiyo, depending on the situation. He's got a level of self-awareness that allows him to at least part of the time recognize when someone's acting ridiculous.
- Otaku: He is secretly one, mainly on Dating Sims. He also collects bishoujo figurines.
- Platonic Life Partners: He's best friends with Kashima, and the only reason he was willing to join the drama club's excursion was because she would be there too.
- Real Men Wear Pink: A literal example. Character profile says he sometimes wear cute or pink clothes, a result from copying fashion magazines.
- Shipper on Deck: He, at the very least, is aware of Chiyo's crush on Nozaki and seems to be curious about whether it will go anywhere.
- Shrinking Violet: Despite being introduced as a Handsome Lech, he is actually a shy guy who consistently gets embarrassed after delivering his cheesy lines to other girls.
- Significant Birth Date: 14 February, Valentine's Day. His friends have fun teasing him by giving him chocolates as birthday presents instead of regular presents.
- Speaks in Shout-Outs: Dating Sim quotes are the only things he can say to females that he's not familiar with.
- Tsundere: Despite his initially bishonen appearance and his Shrinking Violet personality, he shows signs of being a Type A/B combo. Mamiko, the main character in Nozaki's manga, was even based on his personality.
- Unmanly Secret: He enjoys wearing cute pink clothes when no one else is around.
- Wrong Genre Savvy: He thinks more along the lines of a main character in a visual novel rather than a supporting character in a shoujo parody, not to mention that he is the inspiration for a traditional shoujo heroine.
Sakura's classmate and friend, who's always being chased by teachers. She also offends people on a regular basis — whether she does it on purpose or not is hard to tell. She is in the choir club and has an incredibly beautiful singing voice, enough to make people refer to her as the "Lorelei" of the choir club.
- Abhorrent Admirer: Seo likes hanging out with Wakamatsu and favors him to some extent, but he finds her incredibly annoying. In a bit of Dramatic Irony, he has compared her unfavorably to the "ideal" Lorelei right to her face in an attempt to shame her, but she only gets happier every time he does so.
- Anti-Role Model: She is this for the basketball team, in terms of sportsmanship and teamwork.
- The Beard: Acts as Mikoshiba's girlfriend so he can turn down a girl who confessed to him and didn't believe he was already committed. It works, though being Seo, of course it doesn't go perfectly.
- Captain Oblivious: Nozaki pretty much calls her this. Seo has zero ability to read situations for what they are, and thus often ends up ruining the mood. She also never seems to understand (or even notice) when people get mad at her when she says things that are Innocently Insensitive.
- The Confidant: Oddly enough, she appears to be a good listener, and her classmates often talk to her about their problems.
- The Dreaded: Played for Laughs. Because of her violent playstyle, the male basketball club is terrified of her, so much so that when she has the ball, everybody is seen scrambling in fear to get out of her way.
- Establishing Character Moment: When Chiyo first tells Nozaki about her friend, she says Seo tends to get chased a lot. He imagines her being chased romantically by guys. But instead he sees her running away from two teachers, then leaping over a large construction pit to evade them. He also learns she's rather rude to people, and wonders if she's doing it on purpose.
- Fashionable Asymmetry: Her ponytail is lopsidedly tied toward the left so it stays over her left shoulder easier.
- First Name Basis: With Sakura.
- The Friend Nobody Likes: Her character profile states that many of her friends find her to be annoying, but still consider her a friend.
- Gamer Chick: Character bios state that she likes fighting, tactical and action games as hobbies.
- Hair Decorations: Has her hair in a scrunchie.
- Hypocritical Humor: She tells Nozaki that she's sensitive to others, and knows how to read a situation. She says that, while doing things that annoy others, such as stepping in front of a camera as it takes a picture, walking on a sign being painted, and walking in-between a guy handing a love letter to a girl, ruining the moment for them.
- Innocently Insensitive: Her attitude is seen by Nozaki as a result of being mood-blind. Probably the best example of this is when she tells Nozaki that people ask her for help all the time, that she's considerate of others and that she can read situations... all while ruining a group picture, smearing someone's calligraphy and interrupting a love confession, in that order.
- In-Series Nickname: She's known as the Lorelei of the Choral Club, but only by people who hear her singing over the intercom and don't realize it's actually the annoying girl who tramples on people's dreams for giggles. Well, they soon find out.
- Apparently among choir competitions her nickname becomes "The Little Mermaid", because her club mates forbid her from speaking at them so that her personality doesn't come forth and ruin her image.
- Jerkass: She is brash, abrasive and rude, but it's hard to tell how much of what she does is malicious and how much is just being dense. On the one hand, she loves laughing at people who come to confess to Lorelei and then find out it's actually her, much to their horror. On the other hand, she's completely confused when people get angry at her for the obnoxious things she says.
- The Lad-ette: A more G-rated example; she's not very feminine, speaks like a boy, is incredibly blunt and abrasive, and she constantly has teachers running after her for some kind of trouble she caused.
- Love at First Note: Her beautiful voice steals the heart of many guys.
- Loves My Alter Ego: Several boys (like Wakamatsu) are infatuated with the mysterious Lorelei of the Choral Club. Yuzuki herself loves to exploit this trope and crush people's dreams after they grow big enough.
- Loving Bully: Towards Wakamatsu. He blurts out to her that recently she only targets him to throw the ball at his face, stalks him during lunchtime, makes him buy her things and carry her stuff...and later she takes him to a family restaurant to buy him some food and even buys him some presents. Nozaki immediately can tell that she likes him, at the very least as someone to hang out with.
- Man Child: Gender inverted, but Seo often comes off as having the emotional maturity of a pre-pubescent boy.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: The masculine girl to Wakamatsu's feminine boy.
- Meaningful Name: Her nickname being "Lorelei" refers to a German folktale about a water spirit whose beautiful singing voice enchants sailors so much that it causes them to crash their ships and drown. Considering Yuzuki's general personality and how she likes to crush people's expectations by revealing herself to be Lorelei, it's even more appropriate.
- Nightmare Fetishist: She only likes horror movies just for the fact that people get brutally killed in them, whether they're hero, villain or innocent bystander. Her conversation with poor Wakamatsu after the movie they watched just involved her describing all the deaths in detail.
- Nonuniform Uniform: Doesn't wear socks.
- Odd Friendship: Nozaki wonders once how Sakura manages to be friends with such a difficult girl and imagines a Worthy Opponent Defeat Means Friendship type cliche. She's too polite to tell him that they just sat next to each other.
- Pet the Dog: She teases and annoys Wakamatsu on a regular basis, but also frequently treats him to dinner and gives him souvenirs from the places she visits.
- She Cleans Up Nicely: While she's not really an eyesore to begin with, Seo will get dolled up for singing performances and competitions by her fellow choir members, and the end result is her looking not only beautiful but also significantly more mature. The change of course is entirely cosmetic; her ill-mannered personality remains intact.
- Significant Birth Date: Her birthday is July 7 or Tanabata, which is a holiday celebrating the once-a-year meeting of the deities and lovers Orihime and Hikoboshi (represented in the sky by the stars Vega and Altair). Considering the star-crossed nature of the relationship between Seo and the numerous admirers of her voice, this is appropriate.
- Singing Voice Dissonance: As mentioned, her singing is beautiful enough to make boys fall for Lorelei and differs so dramatically from her normal rough pattern of speech that people not in the know can't tell that it's her.
- Tomboy and Girly Girl: The tomboy to Sakura's girly girl.
- With Friends Like These...: She seems to consider Wakamatsu a friend at the very least, including buying him dinner, watching movies together and bringing him souvenirs, but she also tramples him on the basketball court and is the cause of his insomnia.
A friend and rival of Mikoshiba's who is referred to as the "Prince" of the school. Despite being a bit of an airhead, Kashima can recite lines as flirty as Mikoshiba's and is very popular with girls, who are often surrounding her. She is also a talented member of the drama club.
- The Ace: She gets high grades, is good at sports, and very popular with the girls. Too bad she lacks the common sense to not make Hori beat the hell out of her.
- Adorkable: Manages to be charming even when she's pulling the stupidest stunts.
- Ambiguously Bi:
- She sure likes to flirt with the ladies, and even goes on group dates with them, but never takes it any further than that. At the same time, she's always looking for attention and/or approval from Hori, tries to do things to make him happy (which often backfire, but hey, it's the thought that counts) and frets whenever she thinks he doesn't like her.
- Under the section for "Preferred Type" in her bio, it states "thinks all girls are cute and unknown for guys", which seems to imply that she definitely leans towards girls, but hasn't dismissed the possibility of being attracted to guys.
- Attention Whore: She's not nasty about it, but in general she likes to be fawned upon and praised, and she can be rather shameless in her pursuit of such.
- Bifauxnen: To the point that Wakamatsu and Hori both initially mistook her for a boy. It also makes her incredibly popular with her classmates; her male classmates admire her for her "prince-like" qualities while her female classmates just want her attention. The only clues that she's actually a girl are her high voice and the skirt she wears with her uniform.
- Black Bead Eyes: Kashima is sometimes drawn with these in her particularly oblivious moments.
- Boyish Short Hair: It complements her "prince" look well.
- Brilliant but Lazy: She is clearly an excellent actor, but can't be bothered to go to drama club practice; this is why Hori needs to come by and drag her to the meetings. Her character bio states she is like this for just about everything, the reason being that because things often come easily to her, working hard is something that she isn't used to.
- The Charmer: Perhaps her most famous talent, and it's not just her fangirls that she can turn on the charm to; it's worked on Mikoshiba and Wakamatsu as well. When they first met, it even briefly worked on Sakura, who's otherwise very strictly Nozakisexual.
- Chick Magnet: She has hordes of fangirls, although they tend to cause trouble such as damaging the sets for plays.
- Cloudcuckoo Lander: She has absolutely no common sense, as well as a strange train of thought that causes her to jump to weird conclusions, which she then takes as fact. Hard to say which one gets her hit by Hori more.
- Corner of Woe: Kashima gets really sulky like this whenever it seems like Hori's favoring someone else over her.
- Crosscast Role: Always cross-casts as male characters, usually princes.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Inverted. Kashima is introduced as a handsome Chick Magnet who is good at everything from sports to academics, and about 70% of her official artwork also has her sporting a suave look on her face that gives the impression of a "bad boy". It takes less than a day of knowing her for Chiyo to realize that while Kashima is genuinely the cool-looking genius she's famous for being, she's also genuinely an air-headed moron.
- Ditzy Genius: She is good at almost everything, but she has an off-kilter thought process and can never seem to figure out when the things she does will get her in trouble.
- Dreadful Musician: Singing is the only thing she is completely devoid of talent in. She's so horrible at it that she leaves Nozaki and Sakura collapsed on the floor clutching their heads. Wakamatsu once realizes that Seo is in the choral club like Lorelei and almost starts to follow, but then hears Kashima's awful singing and assumes it's Seo. The misunderstanding lives on.
- In a subversion though, it's pointed out that she's actually good at playing instruments; she just can't sing.
- Even the Girls Want Her: To be more precise, it's especially the girls who want her. Her male classmates admire her, but the consensus amongst the school's female population is that she's the hottest guy in her year.
- Gender-Blender Name: "Yuu" is a unisex name in Japan, which is fitting considering her androgynous appearance.
- Handsome Lech: Though she is popular, after Nozaki actually meets Kashima every role he tries to write for her ends up with the Prince Charming character being an obnoxious flirt. She also sometimes forgets the names of the girls she's flirting with and handwaves it by just calling them "princess".
- Her Boyfriend's Jacket: Kashima is perfectly comfortable stealing Hori's pants after drama club activities are finished (even though they're too short for her). This is mostly so that she can lend him her skirt because she thinks appealing to his apparent girly side will make him happy. Of course, it doesn't.
- Hollywood Tone-Deaf: Her singing is very loud and very off-key.
- Hot-Blooded: She's prone to suddenly becoming unnecessarily fired up and competitive, sometimes about the most random things.
- Huge Schoolgirl: She is 1.76m tall (about 5'8"), which is about the same height as Mikoshibanote . At one point she says that with her flat chest, height and short hair the only girly part about her is her voice. And then she instantly starts laughing because she likes dressing and acting like a guy.
- Idiot Hero: While she's smart academically and only really the 'hero' when she's acting in plays, the rest of her personality pegs her as this.
- Japanese Pronouns: Unlike many other bifauxnen characters, Kashima is not a "Bokukko". She uses "Watashi", which while technically gender-neutral, is informally feminine and most commonly used by girls.
- The Knights Who Say Squee: Kashima may be a very accomplished actor with a lot of fangirls, but she herself is a huge fangirl for Hori. For all that she teases Hori about how his height makes it difficult for him to land roles, she likes nothing more than to watch him act. In fact once, when faced with the prospect of acting alongside him, she gets so giddy she can't think straight enough to perform properly.
- Ladykiller in Love: Somewhat. She's a proud Chick Magnet, but in the meantime she's constantly trying to get Hori's attention and worries whenever it seems like her self-proclaimed status as his "beloved kohai" is threatened.
Kashima: (asking about Suzuki) So I'm supposed to admire this guy like the protagonist? And he's handsome, smart, great at sports, and kind, isn't that right?
Mikoshiba: Well, yeah...
Kashima: Then why doesn't Senpai like me?! I don't get it!
- Living Emotional Crutch: She's one to Mikoshiba, as she's one of the few people he's fully comfortable to be around. Mikoshiba often calls her or uses her as a shield if he's panicking because of a situation he doesn't know how to handle. The only reason why Mikoshiba was even willing to go on a summer retreat was because he knew Kashima would be there, and he got distressed when he realized that he wouldn't be staying in the same room as her.
- Made of Iron: Kashima endures Hori physically throwing her across the hall, flinging large objects at her, and kicking her to high heaven, but no matter what Kashima always walks it off with at worst a few cuts and scratches. Sometimes she even laughs about it.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: She forms a platonic version of this with Mikoshiba. The latter is the model Nozaki used for his manga's heroine, Mamiko, and while Kashima is not the model for Suzuki, Nozaki occasionally uses her as inspiration for him.
- Modesty Shorts: Kashima's character bio shows that she wears shorts under her skirt.
- Nonuniform Uniform: She wears a tie instead of a ribbon like the other girls. Since ties are primarily worn by male students, it makes her look even more masculine, at least from the waist up.
- One of the Boys: Sometimes people either forget she is a girl, or they just think she is a boy. She also seems to have more guy friends outside of the main cast.
- Peek-a-Bangs: Occasionally Kashima's fringe of hair is drawn covering up her left eye.
- Petite Pride: Arguably. What she clearly takes pride in is her status as "Prince of the School", and she points out her nearly non-existent chest as one of the things that helps her "boyish" image.
- Platonic Life Partners: She and Mikorin are best friends with each other.
- Prince Charming: She often plays this kind of role.
- Red Baron: The Prince.
- She's Got Legs: According to official art.
- Significant Birth Date: Her birthday is Halloween, which possibly reflects how she's a drama club actress who's often put into costumes.
- Slapstick Knows No Gender: She gets a fair amount of slapstick thanks to Hori's Comical Overreacting to the things she does.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: With Hori, in an odd sense. Kashima's the exact opposite of vitriolic to Hori, but she has a bad habit of messing with him or inadvertently doing things that from his perspective look like harassment (which makes her the target of his rage in return). In spite of this, they are shown to actually get along quite well in more relaxed situations.
- Vocal Dissonance: Contrary to her masculine looks, Kashima's natural speaking voice is high and easily recognizable as belonging to a girl, though she often manually lowers it when she's flirting with her fangirls or acting.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: She prefers wearing guys' clothes in casual settings, and is occasionally mistaken for a guy as well. In one story she gets a cold, which causes the pitch of her voice to drop so low that she muses that she's now lost her only feminine trait, seemingly setting up a Tomboy with a Girly Streak revelation. Instead the view pans back to her gleefully wearing the male uniform to commemorate the occasion.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: A dark blue color.
- Zettai Ryouiki: You wouldn't think the resident "prince" would be associated with this, but Kashima chooses to wear socks that come just under the knee (grade C) with her uniform, and definitely has some nice legs to go with them.
A senior student who's also the president of the Drama Club. He helps Nozaki with his backgrounds anonymously in return for getting Nozaki to write scripts for the club's plays. He's a hard-working, good-natured guy, but he has little patience with others goofing off, messing around, or being bone-headed
A tenth-grader in the boys' basketball club, who used to be Nozaki's junior in the basketball club during middle school. He's a sensitive sort, and gets deeply stressed by Seo barging around his life; unfortunately, he's also pretty naive, and has no clue how to deal with her. He has a crush on Lorelei of the choir club... who, unknown to him, is actually Seo.
It was actually thanks to Seo that he eventually became one of Nozaki's assistants; he kept staying at Nozaki's apartment due to Seo-induced insomnia and Nozaki had him doing screentones to make use of the time since his other assistants couldn't do it.
- Adorkable: Out of all the male characters, he is the most naive.
- Black Bead Eyes: He is sometimes drawn with this and other simplified facial features, to show his naivety and innocence.
- Buxom Is Better: Not a believer in this. When pressed about hiding behind Seo, who has a pretty large chest, to ward off admirers, Waka questions why he would find "lumps of fat" exciting.
- Digging Yourself Deeper: All of his attempts at getting Seo to stay away from him just give her more reasons to hang out with him.
- Face of a Thug: Readers have observed Wakamatsu's physical appearance is at odds with his personality. He's a tall, muscular basketball player with Tsurime Eyes that can become surprisingly harsh looking when he's emotionally distressed or in deep concentration, and yet he's got the temperament of a sweet, impressionable little boy.
- Fragile Flower: He easily starts sobbing if he feels he's being picked on, or when feeling sorry for someone else.
- Genius Ditz: Extra materials reveal that for all his naiveté, Wakamatsu is a diligent student and ranks within the top 30 of his class in terms of grades and test results.
- Gentle Giant: The combination of his build and his sensitive nature makes him this.
- Has a Type: Supposedly likes younger girls with a "sweet personality" or "beautiful heart". Ironic that he's most shipteased with Seo who is the exact opposite of that.
- Hero Worship: More like Senpai Worship, but his introductory chapter makes it clear that he has a great deal of respect for Nozaki from back when they played basketball together in middle school. In general he's very enthusiastic and eager-to-please toward all of his upperclassmen.
- Honor Before Reason: He tends to do what his senpai orders without thinking whether it is appropriate.
- Innocent Blue Eyes: Considering his naivete and all.
- The Insomniac: He suffers from chronic insomnia, and Seo-related stress makes it worse. Ironically, 'Lorelei', her singing voice, can send him off to sleep in seconds... not that he knows it's her.
- In Universe Nickname: Seo imposed "Waka" on him.
- Keet: As the second tallest character in the series he's noticeably larger than the usual example, but still a little too meek to be considered a Boisterous Bruiser. Watamatsu can be very happy-go-lucky and exuberant, especially when among friends.
- It's even lampshaded by Hori in episode 11 of the anime.
Hori: You're so energetic.
- Loving a Shadow: Played hilariously (and tragically) straight with his infatuation with Lorelei. The only reason why nobody has told him the truth about Lorelei is because it'd be too tragic. (Seo herself appears to be happy leaving him in the dark at the moment.) In a further bit of irony, the character bios mention that he prefers kind, sweet younger girls—the exact opposite of Seo.
- Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: The feminine boy to Seo's masculine girl. The trope is played with in that Wakamatsu isn't that feminine, but personality-wise he's a good deal more sensitive and kind than Seo is, and also takes shoujo manga a little too much to heart.
- Morality Pet: Despite her rough treatment of him in basketball, he is one to Seo. Notably, when Wakamatsu got depressednote to the point where he didn't even feel like putting up with her actions, she couldn't get in the mood to sing. There's also this exchange:
Wakamatsu: At any rate, why are you only picking on me?!
Seo: Huh, I am?
- Naïve Newcomer: He is the youngest and newest member to Nozaki's group of assistants. He also tends to be the most clueless and takes advice from shoujo manga, which Nozaki scolds him for since it never works.
- Nice Guy: He's too gentle to tell Seo that she's annoying, leading her to think they're the best of friends or possibly even more. His way of trying to express his annoyance is to glare at her, but since he doesn't want to be rude he also greets her at the same time. And he goes out of his way to do this frequently.
- Nonuniform Uniform: Like Chiyo, his uniform deviation is very subtle, but Wakamatsu wears button-up sweaters with his uniform, while the ones officially sanctioned by the school don't open at the front.
- Real Men Wear Pink: Since starting to work as Nozaki's assistant, Wakamatsu has become a fairly avid reader of shoujo manga, and continues to attempt to apply their tactics to real life much to Nozaki's great concern.
- Sempai/Kohai: Wakamatsu is kohai to everyone else in the main cast and thus uses everyone's name with the "senpai" suffix.
- Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: The Sensitive Guy to Nozaki's Manly Man. Nozaki even extends sympathies to Wakamatsu regarding Seo because of this trope, noting that he was always more sensitive than anyone else he knew in middle school. Also rather ironic, since Wakamatsu's major hobby is manly, while Nozaki's is anything but.
- Significant Birth Date: 3 September, referred to by the Japanese as the Sleep Science Day.
- Sixth Ranger: The last to join Nozaki's manga assistant crew, first as the one in charge of erasing before going on to do screentones.
- Sleepy Head: Ironically, despite Wakamatsu's otherwise chronic insomnia, listening to Seo sing will cause him to fall asleep in seconds without fail, regardless of his surroundings and/or anything else he's doing. During the summer retreat, Seo suddenly singing while bathing caused him to fall asleep face down in the hot spring and he had to be fished out.
- Split Personality: In one of the stories, putting on an eyepatch somehow causes his personality to completely 180, turning from a nervous but sweet boy to an arrogantly confident "tough-guy", with the body language to match. When he snaps out of it though, he doesn't remember any of it. It turns out the personality had been subconsciously inspired by a shoujo manga character.
- Stalker with a Crush: Not exactly, but Wakamatsu shows symptoms of this in regards to his infatuation with "Lorelei". He sometimes hides near the Choir Club room in hopes of figuring out her identity. He also loves her songs so much that he memorizes them, to the point he can hear a small clip of one and accurately say what song and at what time mark the clip came from. Nozaki finds this creepy and incomprehensible, considering that Wakamatsu always falls asleep within seconds of listening to her sing.
- Tsundere: Mikoshiba calls him a "new type of tsundere" because he has an antagonistic relationship with Seo while gushing over "Lorelei."
- Unsettling Gender-Reveal: Wakamatsu's mistaking of Kashima as a guy leads to a very awkward situation where he follows the girls to a lingerie store and sticks around, which makes Kashima wonder if he's a pervert. Wakamatsu eventually finds out that Kashima is in fact a girl, leaving him completely mortified by his actions.
- Wrong Genre Savvy: He often uses tactics only seen in shoujo manga in order to solve his problems with Seo. Since he's in a manga parodying the genre instead of playing it straight, they tend to backfire.
Wakamatsu: Senpai...where did I go wrong...?
Nozaki: ...Probably from the moment you started using shoujo manga.
- You Gotta Have Purple Hair: Wakamatsu's hair has a dull purple tinge to it.
Nozaki's current supervising editor.
- Butt Monkey: Granted, everyone in this series has their fair share of being at the end of jokes, but he is ridiculously miserable.
- First Name Basis: Rarely called by his last name in-series, mostly due to the fact Nozaki, and by extension Nozaki's friends, call him Ken-san.
- Formerly Fit: He gains weight whenever Maeno is around in his life. Considering what Maeno is like, you can't really blame him. In one of the official anthologies, it's shown that Maeno being briefly hospitalized for flu alone made Ken lose half of the weight.
- No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: When he hears that Maeno's being transferred, he decides to be a little nicer to him before the time comes. In reality Maeno was being transferred to Ken's office, and a change of editorship causes three of Maeno's mangakas to be transferred to Ken due to "the two of them being so friendly recently". Even worse is the fact that each of the mangakas have been affected by Maeno in a different way: the first one is a newbie who's still too charmed by Maeno's good looks to realize what he's like, the second one is so traumatized by Maeno's shoddy editing in one year that she's distrusting of all editors and the third one is a senior mangaka who's hellbent on getting revenge on Maeno.
- Only Sane Man: He is the most down to earth character in the entire series and probably the one with the most common sense.
- Ronin: He spent two years as this, so Maeno is now his sempai despite them being high school classmates.
- Surrounded by Idiots: Sometimes feels this way. It doesn't really help that Maeno isn't the only idiot in the editorial department, as Chapter 58 revealed.
- Terrible Artist: His drawing skill is so poor that he could only manage stick figures!
Nozaki's previous supervising editor, currently overseeing Miyako.
- Author Appeal: In-universe, he has a massive obsession with tanuki and always pushes for their inclusion in the manga of the authors under him.
- Bishōnen: To the point that one of the mangaka working under him is too charmed by his good looks to realize his true personality, since she's still rather new to the job.
- Complaining about Shows You Don't Watch: A pretty audacious example: several gags imply he nearly never read Nozaki's scripts!
- Executive Meddling: In-universe, he's notorious for making his charges do wild and unnecessary edits to their manga, and is the reason why tanuki keep showing up in Miyako's works.
- Innocently Insensitive: It doesn't seem like he does most things to be malicious, he's just not aware of the fact that he bothers other people.
- Jerkass: He is self-centered and, when not forcing invasive changes onto his charges' works, is noted to have a history of shoddy editing jobs and shirking his duties. In a class reunion he basically made everyone think that Miyamae was a hapless do-nothing who depended on him to get any work done.
- Meaningful Name: Maeno comes from "mae no," or "former."
- Narcissist: A blog that was supposed to be about the manga anthology and the work of the mangaka instead is just a blog about him. Each post features a different photo of him. Nozaki wanted him to take some reference photos of an amusement park, but he just took a bunch of selfies in an amusement park instead. He also seems to believe he is incredibly good at what he does and that his suggestions are good despite just causing a lot of annoyance and extra work.
- Pointy-Haired Boss: He is more concerned with himself than with his job, and he doesn't seem to realize how much trouble he causes for everyone. Moreover, his incompetency caused several cases of embarrassing misprints, and it was implied that he never actually read Nozaki's manga. With the exception of Miyako, every mangaka supervised by him hated him.
- Terrible Artist: He is also terrible at drawing, although he can at least draw crude body-shaped figures, unlike Miyamae.
- Villain with Good Publicity: As villainous as a jerkass can be. He's seen as a hardworking, super-reliable editor to his colleagues (except Miyamae, who's known him and has had to put up with his actions since high school), when in reality he is a selfish and narcissistic slacker who is every mangaka's worst nightmare.
Another mangaka who lives in Nozaki's apartment building.
- Covert Pervert: As Mikoshiba found out, she has incomplete sets of most drawing manuals, but the full set of "The Male Nude" art reference book. She's also pretty quick to ask Mayu to be her shirtless model, and later mentions to Nozaki that she likes Mikoshiba's body type.
- Creator Thumbprint: Tanuki. She does have a Cuteness Proximity towards them, but Maeno's obsession with them also has a role—he makes Miyako put them in all of her manga. Even she has her limits—Miyako puts them as background critters, but Maeno wants them in the foreground.
- Extreme Doormat: Maeno has pretty much gotten his way with her manga because she's incapable of standing up to him. Maeno even managed to make her apologize for his mistake when she once tried to call him out on it.
- Hair Decorations: Wears a hairband.
- Horrible Judge of Character: It's hard to understand how she can work with Maeno for several yearsnote and yet still seem to be friendly with him. Other mangaka that were transferred to Miyamae from him are closer to Broken Birds.
- Likes Older Women: Inverted in that her college classmate assumes she's dating Nozaki, a high school boy. And as mentioned in Covert Pervert she is not above appreciating shirtless middle school and high school boys.
- Living a Double Life: A normal college student by day, a shoujo manga artist on her free time.
- Nice Girl: Her default expression is a cheerful smile. Unfortunately, this works against her when it comes to her job, since she's too nice to stand up to Maeno and his Executive Meddling.
- Oblivious to Love: Doesn't notice that her classmate Ryousuke, Yuzuki's older brother, is attracted to her. When he does try to tell her, the circumstances make him sound like he's perving on her.
- Punny Name: Not her, but one of her day in the limelight chapters is titled Genkan Shoujo Miyako-san. Apart from the obvious allusion to the series title, a genkan is a traditional Japanese entryway area for an apartment, through which the other characters frequently visit her.
- Sequential Artist: Writes shorter series in Monthly Girls' Romance.
- Stepford Smiler: She's not, but her habit of smiling her way out of difficult questions makes other people think she is.
- Two First Names: Yukari Miyako is stated to be her actual name, not just a pen name. Miyako is a feminine given name (as indicated by the "-ko" suffix), so having it as a surname is even more unusual than Sakura.
Nozaki's younger brother, currently at middle school.
- Brilliant but Lazy: When he was young he was bullied for being quiet, so Nozaki told him to do his best, but if it was too much work he didn't have to bother. Taking that to heart, he uses the least possible effort for anything in his daily life apart from his love for judo. When his club members used judo as bait, he instantly got top grades and became very popular, which irritated them enough to stop the plan.
- First Name Basis: Most characters refer to him by his first name to avoid confusion with his older brother. He also calls older characters such as Mikoshiba and Miyako by their first names - according to the official fanbook, it's because he likes older people.
- Freudian Excuse: As a child, he was often bullied for being so quiet. Nozaki said that he'd protect Mayu if the latter found it too troublesome to deal with the bullies himself. Instead of being heartwarming, it just encouraged Mayu to use his brother as a personal crutch and encouraged him to go through life trying to expend as little energy as possible.
- Gender-Blender Name: Mayu is usually a girl's name.
- Instant Expert: After seeing a few samples of his older brother's work and some of Mikoshiba's figures and manga, he can draw professional-level manga-style characters freehand with little trouble.
- Lazy Bum: He refuses to put effort into anything but the judo club. However, other members do admit that when he puts effort into things like his schoolwork, he tends to excel at them. Also note that, as one can see from The Southpaw example below, his laziness is extremely calculated such that he is willing to expend energy to avoid expending more energy later.
- The Southpaw: Extra materials state that he's naturally left-handed, but trained himself to be ambidextrous because he found it too troublesome to deal with the fact that most things are made for right-handed people.
- The Stoic: Even more so than his brother.
She is the heroine of Nozaki's manga. Her personality is based off Mikoshiba, and unwittingly, her appearance is based on Sakura
- Distaff Counterpart: Invoked, Nozaki based her personality off Mikoshiba.
- Hair Decorations: Has a ribbon on the back of her head. As it turns out, Sakura was the unwitting inspiration for Mamiko's character design, since she was also wearing a ribbon on the back of her head when Nozaki first met her.
- Naïve Everygirl: Hits most of the points: romantic, insecure about her feelings for Suzuki and too embarrassed to express them, gets pushed around by others, and comes across as innocent and inexperienced.
- Only One Name: We still don't know her last name.
- The Power of Love: Nozaki, after trying to live as her for a day, concludes that the reason she is able to put effort on the things she does is because of her love for Suzuki.
- Tsundere: A Type B, which Nozaki based on Mikoto's own Type B tsundere tendencies. Or as Nozaki puts it in chapter 20, while providing some guidance for Hori when he's ill:
Even though she likes Suzuki, she can't be honest with herself and always ends up saying the wrong thing, so on one hand, she feels depressed, and on the other, she's worried about the other girls' actions, thinking, "Can I trust Suzuki?" Like that.
He is the love interest to Mamiko in Nozaki's manga.
- Adaptation Dye-Job: In colored official publications his hair is shown as blond like Mamiko's. In the cover of Nozaki's manga in the anime his hair is shown as brown.
- Bishōnen: As a Shoujo Genre male protagonist, this is pretty much enforced.
- Chick Magnet: Some of Nozaki's chapters play this up for drama.
- Gary Stu: In-Universe. Miyamae once complained about this, and wanted Nozaki to make up some weak points for him. Nozaki settled on... the inability to fold clothes.
- Narcissist: When Miyamae points out that Suzuki hasn't developed at all compared to Mamiko, Nozaki helpfully points out that he spends huge amounts of time caring for his skin while talking about how pretty he is. This isn't in the manga itself and he's forbidden from ever showing it.
- Nice Guy
- Princely Young Man
- Single-Target Sexuality: Suzuki only has eyes for Mamiko, according to Nozaki.
- Static Character: Miyamae complained a little about that in Chapter 13.