When watching the Hana Yori Dango (Boys Over Flowers) anime it seemed like there was a distinctly different art style for the final episode (#51). Not remarkably different, but noticeable enough that it made me wonder if something had changed for the last episode...different direction, artists, etc.

Has anyone noticed this? Was anything ever said about the production of the series that indicated that something happened near the end that could have caused some kind of shake up?

  • You should specifically mention which episode, since "last episode" is going to be outdated once the next one comes out. – Xeo Dec 12 '12 at 0:57
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    @Xeo The series is over and done with long, long ago. No new episodes will be coming out. But that said, for the sake of completeness, I'll go ahead and add the number. – Beska Dec 12 '12 at 1:20
  • Ah, making it "final episode" makes thing much clearer. :) – Xeo Dec 12 '12 at 1:32

I can't answer your question with certainty. No, there doesn't seem to be anything off about writing, production, or art direction in the last episode:

  • The last 3 episodes were all written by the same person, 影山由美 (kageyama yumi). 影山由美 was in charge of series organization/composition and wrote more episodes then anyone else.
  • The Producer, 山吉康夫, also produced episodes 3, 9, 15, 20, 26, 32, 37, 42, 46, and of course 51.
  • Art direction was performed by 馬越嘉彦 (umakoshi yoshihito), who was actually in charge of character design for the whole show. He also provided art direction for episodes 1, 16, 25, 32, 43, and of course 51.

This is all from the wikipedia page on the anime, which lists all the details by episode: 花より男子 アニメ TVシリーズ

Personal speculation:
I've seen the whole anime, have read the manga all the way through a couple of times, and watched two of the live actions (Japanese and Korean), I was really into Hana Yori Dango back in the day. I felt like the end of the anime was unexpected/unforeseen and that they just rushed an ending together. The show did a pretty good job of following the manga ... right until those last few episodes/last episode. My guess is they were told,

were cutting the show, end it.

so they did and things didn't turn out quite the same as usual.

According to HMV Online, the average rating for the TV show was 9.9%, max was 12.1%. I don't know much about TV ratings, but the Japanese TV Drama was never lower then 17% in season 1 and 19% in season 2 (same Wikipedia page). To me this looks like a cut due to ratings.

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  • Well, same producer and art director as multiple previous episodes pretty much says it all, I think. I'm marking this accepted unless some new unlikely evidence comes in. For what it's worth, I'm with you...was very much into the series and then it felt like it drove off a cliff at the end...everything seemed to have been resolved very oddly and hastily...additionally episode 50 looked almost like it could be the ending, and then everyone was told "come back! people hate that ending, we have to make it happier!" ありがとうございました – Beska Jan 3 '14 at 23:10

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