Show by Rock!! Episode 1 [Initial Impressions]

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PLOT: Metropolis of music, MIDICITY. A kitty girl wearing gothic lolita clothing named Cyan is scouted by Maple Arisugawa, the president of a music agency. From there, she meets Chuchu (a pun off of the sound that rabbits make) the honor student rabbit girl, a net geek dog girl named Retoree (from “Retriever”), and an alien sheep (?) girl named Moa. Together, they form the band named “Plasmagica,” and aim for the top of the world.
However, the path there is long and tough, and keeping in high spirits is important. By battling against other strange bands, Plasmagica slowly grows toward a top-grade band. In the end, they’ll be a band that becomes the driving force of MIDICITY’s music industry… Maybe?

Gonna be a music millionaire!

Here is BONES second work of the season alongside Kekkai Sensen.  This studio is impressing me a lot–  they must have a large budget to work with considering they weren’t producing much of anything last season aside from small cooperation agreements in key animations on a few series here and there.  It certainly paid off in their premiere with Kekkai Sensen and now this!  We’ve got a beautiful mix of animation and some of the best CG I’ve seen of a televised series in recent memory.  Japanese company Sanrio most known for the creation of Hello Kitty that focuses on the kawaii side of japanese culture developed a mobile game in 2011 and this is what we’ve got here.  What’s more interesting to take note is that this is the first anime Sanrio has helped produced that is on a late-night programming block.  Now I can see why the creators can have the monster designs the way they do and I will be curious to see how much exactly as this series will be moving forward will handle censorship through decisions by Sanrio.

We’ve got quite an ingenious story–  a girl gets trapped in a world of music from her cellphone game.  Ozma was a fairly solid ova sci-fi series about sand pirates–  Leiji Matsumoto created the script well over 20 years ago.  Director Takahiro Ikezoe took note of the acclaim Matsumoto has received over the years and actually made a good story.  With Show by Rock!! Ikezoe is trying something different–  a kid’s series on a late-night timeslot.    Now I won’t say this series doesn’t have it’s stereotypes–  the shy blue-haired girl trope especially.  This however works extremely out flushing out Cyan Hijirikawa from an introvert into a mahou shojo with a voice.  The CG effects where she is playing the guitar fending off the monster is jaw-dropping and I like how she gets herself noticed by the boy band Shingan Crimsonz as a result from this.  Destiny is pulled in for her that develops a music contract with an all-girl band by the end and it’s a light-hearted series with an very interesting transition style from traditional animation to CG that will take some getting used to.

Since this series focuses on music I wouldn’t be surprised if we have multiple ending sequences and possibly opening animations as well.  Speaking of the soundtrack Yasuharu Takahashi [Shiki, Gantz composer]  wrote the score for this.  It has his usual chorus and string style however its not as dark as his usual works.  With as many insert songs this episode has I hope it doesn’t overshadow Takahashi’s hand in this.

OP: “Seishun wa Non-Stop! Cyan ver.” (青春はNon-Stop!シアンver.;Youth is Non-Stop!) by Plasmagica

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Generic J-Pop song that highlights Cyan’s voice–  what I like about the animation is how she is singing through a music video and is interrupted when she realizes she is in her school.  Really funny.

ED: “Have a nice MUSIC!!” by Plasmagica

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Another normal J-Pop sound that focuses on more of the band in its entirety.  After seeing this I can tell the creators are trying to make this as kid-friendly as possible.  Somehow though the late-night programming block might change things.  As for this ending it isn’t something that stands out for me.


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