Everyone has fallen in love with the struggles of Komi-san in Komi Can’t Communicate. The anime does a great job of shining a light on issues around anxiety while still presenting a light and fun series. So, what was the inspiration behind Komi Can’t Communicate?
There is not much information out there regarding the inspiration for Komi’s story. After all, the mangaka Tomohito Oda has successfully kept their personal details secret, something that should be commended. However, we can learn a bit from Q&As that have been done previously.
Is Komi Can’t Communicate Based on a True Story?
No, Komi Can’t Communicate is not based on a true story. Like many stories, it is an amalgamation of various things experienced by the author and their family and friends.
In the Q&A linked below, Tomohito Oda says that the story was initially meant to have a male lead with social anxiety. However, it was suggested that the lead be made a female to make it more interesting to potential readers.
What Was Komi Can’t Communicate’s Inspiration?
According to the video above produced by publishers Viz Media, many little things inspired the Komi Can’t Communicate manga.
Tomohito Oda mentions that “when I was a student all I thought about was communication.”
The theme of communication may have inspired the author from an early age, especially when it’s common for many students to feel social anxiety at some point. For an artist, it’s perhaps unsurprising that their early experiences might go on to influence their work.
Perhaps most interesting, though, are comments Oda makes about communication problems in their immediate family:
“My wife claims to have trouble communicating, so I reference her sometimes.”
It’s not clear whether Oda’s wife is the main inspiration behind the beautiful Komi-san’s anxiety, but you can imagine that those real-life experiences will go a long way to helping Komi Can’t Communicate be an authentic representation of such a subject.
Later on in the Q&A, Oda talks about how they see a part of themself in most of their characters. They act a bit like Komi when meeting new people, but with close friends, they behave more like Najimi.
It appears that, like many storytellers, Tomohito Oda found inspiration for Komi-san in many different places. Komi Can’t Communicate is a collection of real-life experiences which are crucial to making such a successful slice-of-life story around a subject to which many of us can relate.
No matter what Oda’s ultimate inspiration, we’re just glad to see Komi-san on our screens! Komi Can’t Communicate Season 2 is currently on air in Japan. You can watch the first season on Netflix.
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