How Candy Candy Taught Me All About Dramas

This is a repost of the ridiculously long summary and review of Candy Candy the Japanese manga that I first wrote three years ago when I was watching Friends, Our Legend. There was a lovely little interlude in that drama where the leading lady is discussing with one of the two male leads about the types of men a young lady wants to encounter. FOL happened to be set in the mid-1980s, at a time where heroine grew up having read the seminal manga Candy Candy, which had swept a greater part of the world with its epic charm. So the leading lady describes the three men in Candy’s life: (1) Anthony, Candy’s first love, who dies tragically young and leaves Candy with a lifetime of what-could-have-beens, (2) Terry, Candy’s soul mate, who through machinations and real life obstacles, can never be with Candy, and lastly (3) Albert, Candy’s daddy long-legs, who turns out to be her childhood first crush, and ends up being her forever after (this is alluded to rather than stated). Everything I learned about the genre of romance drama, I learned from Candy Candy. I read it when I was seven years old. It’s the first “book” I remember reading. To this day I read the entire set at least once a year, much like a ritual yet it never gets old nor does the story ever bore me despite having memorized it. Recently I reread it again since the drama Cheongdamdong Alice borrows heavily from both Alice in Wonderland as well as Candy Candy in describing the leading lady and her journey down the rabbit hole into a different world. I thought it would be fun to dig up this old post and share it again. I summarize the entire store as well as describe how it created many if not most of the drama tropes we see today in the world of dramatic storytelling. Continue reading

A Koala’s Guide to the Best Japanese Mangas

Mangas, or Japanese comic books, were my first source of entertainment. Before I watched my first TV show, I read my first manga. More than a quarter of a century’s worth of manga reading has made this medium my most … Continue reading