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Last checked: May 1, 2016
Nana (ナナ) is a Japanese shōjo manga series written and illustrated by Ai Yazawa, serialized in Cookie published by Shueisha. The manga derives its title from the name of the two main characters, both of whom are called Nana. Nana Komatsu is a small town girl who goes to Tokyo to follow her boyfriend and college friends, with the hope of having her dream life. Nana Osaki was in a popular punk band in her home town. She goes to Tokyo with the goal of making it big as a singer. The two Nanas meet on the train ride to the city. Later, they run into each other again when they happen to check out the same apartment, and the girls decide to become roommates. The series chronicles their friendship and their lives as each chases their dreams. The author of the manga is currently sick and is still recovering. It was reported in late April 2010 that she returned home from the hospital and she does not know if or when she will return to work.
Nana is presently being released in North America by Viz Media. It was serialized in the Shōjo Beat until the August 2007 issue, and continues to be released in tankōbon volumes. The manga has also been adapted into a highly successful live-action film with a sequel released on December 9, 2006, and an anime adaptation that premiered on April 5, 2006. The anime adaptation has subsequently been announced as licensed for release in North America by Viz Media. Funimation got the broadcast rights to Viz Media's dub and it premiered on the Funimation Channel on September 19, 2009.
Nana Osaki is a punk singer who wants to debut with her band, Black Stones (BLAST for short), where she is the lead vocalist and her boyfriend, Ren, is the bassist. Nana and Ren have lived together as lovers since she was 16. When Ren is offered a chance to debut in Tokyo as a replacement member of the popular band, Trapnest (Toranesu in Japanese), Nana chooses to continue on with BLAST and to cultivate her own career instead of following Ren, as she has too much ambition to simply be a rockstar's girlfriend. She eventually leaves for Tokyo at the age of twenty to start her musical career.
Nana Komatsu, the other Nana, has a habit of falling in love at first sight all the time, and depending on other people to help her. When her friends, and then her boyfriend, leave for Tokyo, she decides to join them a year later after having saved enough money at the age of twenty.
The two Nanas meet on a train by chance, both on their way to Tokyo. After a string of coincidences, they come to live together in an apartment numbered 707 (nana means "seven" in Japanese). Despite having contrasting personalities and ideals, the Nanas respect each other and become close friends.
Nana Osaki gives Nana Komatsu the nickname Hachi (after Hachikō, because she is weak-willed and has characteristics that resemble a puppy, and also as a joke since hachi means "eight" and nana means "seven" in Japanese).
While BLAST begins to gain popularity at live gigs, the two Nanas face many other issues together, especially in the areas of friendship and romance. The story of Nana revolves heavily around the romance and relationships of the two characters as one seeks fame and recognition while the other seeks love and happiness.