Are you guys ready for a Korean version of Chiaki and Nodame? Who could do justice to those two fascinating and eccentric characters? Ready or not Korea is preparing for a drama adaptation of the critically acclaimed manga Nodame Cantabile. I’m not a fan of the mangaka’s drawing or storytelling style so it was through the popular J-dorama adaptation that I got into the story. It’s going to be hard to top the almost perfect J-dorama starring Tamaki Hiroshi, Ueno Juri, Eita, Koide Keisuke, and Mizukawa Asami. The J-dorama garnered fantastic ratings and won tons of drama awards when it aired so it’s almost pointless to try and do a remake when there is already one version that found acting talent to perfectly bring to life the manga characters. If Korea wants to do it, it’s better off doing it with a twist or some updates in either character description or plot. I liked the way The Suspicious Housekeeper veered from Kaisefu no Mita, but that was just a drama remaking another drama but Nodame Cantabile is based on a manga source material so the Korean version may be hand-tied in trying to infuse it with a different flavor. I liked Nodame Cantabile but it’s not one of my favorite J-doramas for a few personal quirks. I’m exceedingly fastidious and I cannot stand messy heroines and I almost had a brain hernia in episode 1 when I saw Nodame’s room. Chiaki’s reaction would be mine, except I don’t think I could ever fall for her somewhere down the line. But once I got over Nodame’s cleanliness or lack thereof, the Nodame Cantabile story is wonderful for the music, the music college friendships and rivalries, and the way the drama actually showcased the music aspect of the story rather than keep it in the background. With episode 1 being titled “Rhapsody of the weird pianist vs. the self-centered conductor”, I think the quirks of the two leads could work in the bicker-friendly K-drama OTP setting but I’m curious how the manga over-the-top elements would be expressed in the K-version. This drama is still in pre-production mode so no casting yet and I’ll bring more news as it arrives. Whoever they find to play the leads will have big big shoes to step into – Hiroshi was magnetic as Chiaki and looked so damn fine in a coat and tails conducting and Juri was like Nodame leaping off the pages of the manga with her body language and animated facial expressions.