I think that it's very typical to compare when a popular manga gets an anime adaptation. The usual comparison goes about the manga getting 10 times better than its anime adaptation and manga fans go berserk over the first episode already. Oh well…
I started reading manga due to its anime counter parts. I started with Kami nomi zo Shiru Sekai and Bakuman. Both having equally good manga and anime that I won't even choose which one is better. In the similar manner, when the anime Deadman Wonderland came, I was so excited to watch a thriller and gory anime AND after 3 episodes, I read the manga because of good reviews. After reading it, I instantly got disappointed with the anime BUT I guess that's just typical when the anime changes major parts of the story. I guess that's what happened in Ao no Exorcist which I never bothered to read. I read from another blog that the anime made its own ending which resulted to some fans getting disappointed (and thus, the movie was born? LOL. We'll see about that).
ANYWAY, this post is mainly about my thoughts regarding my favorite anime for this season, Kuroko no Basuke. So far, I've been enjoying every bit of the anime and my friend recommends that I read the manga. It took awhile for him to convince me 'cause I don't want to be disappointed or anything but I thought, if the anime is so good, even after reading the manga, I'd still like it - like how much I still liked Bakuman.
I wouldn't go on the details of this series. In a quick overview, the story mainly revolves around Kuroko and Kagami as they beat the "Generation of Miracles (Kiseki no Sedai)" together with their teammates in Seirin and become the best in Japan. Yeah, that's their goal AND it is very typical. What is interesting in this series is the idea of the Generation of Miracles. This so-called Generation of Miracles is the regular players of the Teikou Middle School and each of them has their own unique ability (and personality).
Comparing the story of the anime and manga, as of episode 7 of the anime (which aired last week), it has already reached chapter 17 of the manga. Is the anime going fast? I don't think so. I feel that the pacing was just good enough. In my opinion, Production I.G has done a great job in keeping a fateful adaptation of the manga. In particular, the matches have been the same from the dialogues to Kuroko's passes and Kagami's moves. Moreover, the anime has also done a really great job in adding humor. Giving a particular scene and chapter: in episode 2 where in they had to shout their goals before the morning assembly, there were 5 freshmen including Kuroko and Kagami. In the anime, Kagami shouted his goal followed by the three other freshmen who were only made for comedic purposes (LOL). As for the manga (chapter 2), the part where the other three gives their speeches (LOL) were not shown. In fact, they never even got the chance to speak. After Kagami gave his goal, the teacher came in a few minutes later.
Now, for the ups of the manga. The anime did had a little more comedy than the manga but on the other hand, the anime seems to lack a couple of "comeback" dialogues. Not that they matter so much. Of course they don't, that's why they were omitted BUT when I was watching the anime for the first time, it does made me feel that a comeback line was missing. Let me give an examples. One good example was in episode1/chapter1, wherein coach Aida Riko (Saito Chiwa) asked Kuroko to take off his shirt. In the anime, he just took it off while in the manga, Kuroko had a quick line saying: eh? I just put it back on :3 - I had the thought that this was missing when I watched the anime but it doesn't really matter. Really.
Enough talking about what's missing in the story and dialogues and stuff because Production I.G. has done a really good job. The missing lines doesn't really matter much since they have added a couple more of scenes that turned out a lot funnier than in the manga. Now, I would like to discuss the ups and downs of both in terms of art. First off when it comes to the background art, I have to admit that Fujimaki Tadatoshi has done a really amazing work on it. It's noticeable right from the first chapter of the manga. The club recruitment scene looks great. It gives off that very slice of life feel to it. The anime, in comparison, has also done well though I'm definitely choosing the manga on this part. BUT I have to praise the anime's animation which was really great. Right from the scene at episode 1 wherein Kuroko asked to play basketball with Kagami to the practice match with Kaijou and Inter high Preliminaries match with Shinkyo. Speaking of animation, how does the manga keep the momentum up when it comes to matches? Fujimaki-sensei has practically raped the screentones and did a really exhausting and amazing job in adding so much lines that made each matches look outstanding. The movements are shown very well I couldn't even complain about it.
As for the character designs of both, I'd definitely choose the anime's designs. Not that Fujumaki-sensei's work wasn't good. It's just that Kikuchi Yoko, character design of the anime, had done a really great job in polishing Fujimaki-sensei's designs. They had the same look but the anime had made more impact.
In an overall look, both of them have their own strengths and weaknesses. I'm not choosing which one is better because I like them both. I'm going to continue reading the manga and watching the anime. If I get disappointed with the anime, it just means that the adaptation is poor because as of now, despite the missing lines and such, the anime is still perfectly great. Just because there were missing parts, that doesn't mean that the adaptation is poor. I've watched and read Bakuman and I ended up not only liking by loving both. I guess it really just depends on the production company and how they will turn the manga into an anime.