The two continuities are carefully maintained, so the manga is perfectly understandable to anyone who didn’t watch the anime. It is a common misconception that some aspects of the manga were influenced the anime, but the order of events is actually the opposite. Whenever the manga “copies” the anime, it’s because Ume gives the anime staff plans to work with in advance.

Misconception: Origin of Dream Glider

In chapter 2010-11, when Yuno is left alone at Hidamari Apartments for a few hours, she starts singing “Dream Glider” which is heard twice in the anime: the karaoke episode S1EP04 and later in the bathhouse in S2EP05. Some people took this as the manga borrowing something original to the anime, but that’s not true. Although you couldn’t hear it, the song was in the manga first!

At karaoke.

Singing alone. The lyrics are rendered in just kana this time.

Chika

Chika was never an “anime-original” character. Before her appearance in chapter 2012-06 of the manga, she was referenced on V2P028 (below) and V3P101. According to the TV Animation Guidebook, Ume designed sent the anime staff Chika’s character design and included notes on what should happen during her first appearance, S1EP12. Basically, Ume let the anime staff know about Chika far in advance and let them use her designs and ideas long before they would have a chance to show up in the original work. Although Yoshiaki Ito is credited for the anime’s character design adaptations in general, he himself was not responsible for Chika’s original character design because he was simply working from the references Ume supplied.

Chika’s relationships with the other residents of Hidamari Apartments are completely different between the anime and manga. In the manga chapter, no one (except Sae, of course) has seen her before, and when she does arrive, none of the five get to meet her. The only similarity between her first appearance in both the anime and manga is that she leaves Hidamari to go visit a friend.

 The Japanese text specifies “younger sister”.

Natsume

Natsume has more than twice as many appearances in the anime as she does in the manga. I think the anime crew really liked her.

Interestingly, Sae mentioned first meeting her at the shoe lockers in S2EP07, which aired on TV on August 15, 2008. The “Until Natsume Became Natsume” extra chapter was released as part of volume 4 that came out on December 25th, 2008. Ume’s author’s note at the end of volume 4 says the following:

And Natsume. The episode where she meets Sae was planned way in advance and I wanted to release it […]

In part 2 of her Hidamari Sketchbook interview, she expressed interest in writing about the history behind Natsume’s attitude towards Sae. As with Chika, it seems that Ume gave the anime staff her plans for Natsume far in advance and let the anime reference them shortly before the original story was released.

Sae “invites” Natsume to Hidamari Apartments in S4EP02. Within the anime’s timeline, that means Natsume made her first visit about two months later at S3SP02b’s barbeque. But in the manga, Natsume does not visit Hidamari Apartments for the first time until Sae invites her to a Christmas Eve party [2012-07]. At the time the chapter came out, it was previously only known in the anime that Natsume was a fan of Sae’s writing, and Sae herself was unaware of this. In the chapter, though, Natsume names one of Sae’s stories right in front of her. Also, like in the anime, Sae gets Natsume’s phone number. Now that the anime adapted that story as S4EP11, Natsume and Sae’s relationship is once again “even” in both the anime and manga.

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