Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and his Years of Pilgrimage is suspiciously similar to Gossip Girl.
Care to examine the characters with me?
Tsukuru Tazaki is Dan Humphrey
The outsider in the close knit group of friends, allowed entry into their circle but never quite belonging because he is ‘colorless’/not rich. Tsukuru/Dan has known he wanted to build railroad stations/write books for as long as he can remember and he’s always had more direction than his friends. While the rest of the group stays confined to Nagoya/the Upper East Side, he knows he’s better off in Tokyo/Brooklyn. The consummate “lonely boy” he could only fall for a girl who is just out of his reach. Don’t believe that Tsukuru wanted Shir0? Think back to his recurring dream and where it always ended (hint: in between Shiro’s legs).
Yuzuki Shirane (Shiro) is Serena Van der Woodsen
Shiro/Serena is the fairest of them all. Revered as a great beauty with a sparkling personality as she grows older her damage shows through. She’s haunted by her rape in Tokyo/scandalous past and eventually flees Nagoya/New York to teach piano in Hamamatsu/live with an older guy out in the country. She never quite lives up to everyone’s expectations of her.
Eri Kurono Haatainen (Kuro) is Blair Waldorf
Beautiful and talented but always a little less so than her charming best friend Shiro/Serena, she always feels trapped by her best friend’s shadow. She grows up believing she will study literature/be a captain of industry but surprises herself by becoming a potter/taking over Waldorf Designs. She finds a handsome international suitor in a Finnish potter/the prince of Monaco.
Kei Akamatsu (Aka) is Chuck Bass
The most successful of the group of five he is driven in his pursuit of selling seminars/running Bass Industries. His friends all think his work is a bit shady and they don’t have much of respect for him but he’s never cared much what people thought. He used his family connections to launch his business and he knows if word of his homosexuality/general depravity got out, it would be bad for business.
Yoshio Oumi (Ao) is Nate Archibald
Ao/Nate surprised everyone by going from a star rugby/lacrosse player in high school to becoming an extremely successful Lexus salesman/ media mogul. He’s not the most eloquent guy, but people trust him; perfect in his line of work. He’s the guy who isn’t really the centre of the story (remember when Dan combined his character with Eric’s in Inside? Ouch) but is well liked by all of the other characters.
Sara Kimoto is Vanessa Abrams
Her relationship with Tsukuru/Dan is the catalyst for a lot of the story’s action. If she hadn’t prompted him to find his friends/secretly submitted his writing for publication, we wouldn’t have much of a plot.
Fumiyaki Haida is Jenny Humphrey
The mysterious, artistic specter that disappears halfway through the story. Haida/Jenny continues to get mentioned but doesn’t get airtime because he disappeared from school/she left to pursue her love of eyeliner and ratty hair extensions.
And me? That’s one secret I’ll never tell. You know you love me. xoxo