A look at The Idolm@ster or ARE YOU READY?!? I’M LADY!!!!
August 29, 2012 12 Comments
I remember not giving a single fuck about this show when it first aired during Summer 2011. I saw it on the early Summer 2011 charts and thought to myself “The Idolm@ster? Someone is making an anime about that dumb Xbox 360 game? Fuck, I’m not watching that shit”. Well fast forward a year later and I decide to give the show a shot due to my fellow aniblogger friends
pestering me , forcing me, recommend that I at least try it out. So I did. And I ended up regretting not watching this show to begin with. I haven’t had this much fun watching an anime since I watched Baccano! for the first time. So I’m going to run down all the things I loved about this show (which was practically everything).
With a show having this many main characters, it’s hard not to realize that this show is HEAVILY character-driven. Especially when the show gives each character their own episode. So each idol is definitely given their fair share of screen time throughout the show. Most shows with this many characters only direct their focus on maybe a handful of them. Not Idolm@ster. All eyes are on the girls. Of course some attention does go to Producer-san, Ritsuko, Kotori and the Chief. But when it comes right down to it, the show is about the idols. I was not expecting this much character focus when I first started watching Idolm@ster. I assumed it was going to be all about the singing and dancing and idol mumbo jumbo. But it was much more than that. You get to know these characters far more than them just being onstage in matching outfits singing songs and dancing about. It was nice to see A-1 Pictures take such a simple premise and expand upon it as much as they did.
Oh, and to all of you out there that chose a favorite idol or ranked them in tiers, how can you live with yourself? How you are able to go out of your way and say one idol is better than another or saying one of them is your “favorite” is something I will never be able to understand. Every last one of them is wonderful in their own way. There is nothing that makes one better than the other. Which is why I will forever refuse to choose a “favorite”.
I never understood the whole appeal to idols before watching Idolm@ster. Nor did I understand why they needed to wave their arms around when singing while holding a microphone. Of course, it would be awkward to have them stand there singing while blankly looking out into the crowd so I guess I understand it from that viewpoint. But now I suppose I have a better understanding of the idol fandom after watching this show. Especially after listening to all these different Idolm@ster songs. Some of them were incredibly catchy while others were sweet and sincere. It almost makes me want to go and download all 30 GBs of the Idolm@ster’s Music Collection and listen to all of it on repeat for a whole week. And I never expected that to happen. I never expected to get so involved with the music after watching this show. I’m not the type of person to listen to pop music (I’m ultimately assuming this falls under pop music because my library of music rarely ever extends outside of bands formed during the 60’s, 70’s or 80’s so my knowledge of music genres is limited). But the single moment I realized I was into the music was when they changed OPs and I got all pissy because I couldn’t get my fill of “ARE YOU READY?!? I’M LADY!!!”. And then it hit me even harder when they played the first OP as the opener for their New Year’s concert during episode 25. I set my laptop down on the table, stood up with both fists in the air and shouted “FUCK YES” as if I had just one the fucking lottery. I enjoyed the music in Idolm@ster oh so much.
Idolm@ster did a pretty damn good job of grabbing onto my heartstrings, pulling as hard as they fucking could, and held onto them throughout most parts of the series. Granted, it didn’t hit me as hard as say Clannad After Story (and I don’t expect another show to ever do so), but it still did a pretty damn good job of hitting me on more of an emotional level than any show I’ve watched recently. Between Yayoi getting all worried about her brother running off, Chihaya’s recurring memories of her little brother, or Haruka’s worries about everyone drifting apart from one another, Idolm@ster definitely took a couple of trips on the emotional roller coaster. I can’t decide whether Chihaya or Haruka’s episodes got me the most. Chihaya’s story had me closer to tears than anything, but the resolution to Haruka’s story hit a little harder than Chihaya’s. When Haruka’s younger self gave her the same caramel she gave Producer-san at the beginning of the series was a great way of bringing everything together in that series. Maybe both of their sad stories is what makes them the OTP of the series.
This many cute girls in one anime at one time? Sure is moe in here. This is my kind of show. Between all the moe kawaii uguu charades and the silly jokes thrown around by the characters of Idolm@ster, this show was actually quite humorous. From Ami and Mami pretending to be detectives and solve who ate Iori’s Gorgeous Celeb Pudding to episode 15 of “Are We Live?”, this show never stopped being great on the humor front. But of course, the show wouldn’t be complete without a bit of fanservice in the beginning with a good ol’ beach episode. That’s right, a beach episode right out of the gate at episode 5. And let’s not forget getting to see the idols do all of their non-music jobs like dressing up in frog costumes and having a cooking competition or seeing all of them participate in the Entertainment Industry Office Face-Off Super Sports Meet. Even when the idols weren’t wowing us with their musical talents, they were making us laugh and entertaining us through some other medium.
Needless to say, I enjoyed The Idolm@ster far more than I ever anticipated I would. Whether it was the characters being themselves, the music making me feel oh so lady, the emotional draw I got from the show, or everything else in between, this show was just way more than I expected. I would say I had too much fun watching this show, but then that wouldn’t explain why I’m participating in the SCCSAV Idolm@ster LiveWatch. Also I don’t think there is such a thing as having too much fun watching Idolm@ster.
And an Idolm@ster post is not complete without a little bit of A-1 Pictures quality.