I don’t know how to write this…
Let’s see… where do I begin…
It all started last weekend, the same day when I had that Flame-Grilled Chicken burger. I bought the ticket for the movie [Pan] a day earlier, and I was actually at the cinema to watch that movie.
Or so I thought…
I was slightly late, and the movie has started for a few minutes. When I plopped down onto my seat, the first thing I saw on the screen was this.
And I thought, “Huh… I guess I am not late after all, the trailer is still playing…“.
Except the trailer was still playing after 10 minutes. It was then that I realized something must be wrong. A quick check on my phone’s screen told me I was in the correct hall, correct seat and correct screening time. But the movie title, instead of saying [Pan], it said [Love Live! School Idol Movie].
WTF?! I must have clicked on the wrong movie when purchasing my tickets through the mobile app and did not realize it at all!
I contemplated leaving the cinema. It felt stupid to be watching an anime of a bunch of girls in the cinema. But then, it also felt stupid to not watch it after paying money for the tickets. To make matters worse, rather disturbingly, I was enjoying this movie much more than I’d like to admit.
Have you watched [Pitch Perfect]? That American musical movie starring Anna Kendrick and Fat Amy and company? Well, this is sort of like the Japanese anime version of Pitch Perfect. It tells the story of 9 Japanese high school girls who formed a (fictional) popular school idol group called μ’s (pronounced Muse). I think these 3 girls are the main characters.
But really, all 9 seemed to get enough coverage throughout the anime movie that I cannot be sure…
Anyway, they got popular enough and was invited to go to New York to be interviewed and to shoot a music video. The movie talks about their adventures and misadventures in that city.
I was definitely intrigued after the movie. It got me wondering, maybe the movie is adapted from a manga or anime series. So when I came back, I got searching. And holy shit! I found not one, but TWO seasons of anime series.
Don’t judge me! When I left the cinema, I noticed there were many guys and couples in the cinema. Clearly I am not the only sad, lonely, otaku nerd in the whole of Penang island who are easily attracted by hot anime girls!
Anyway, so that’s what I have been doing for the past week or so. Watching two seasons (or 26 episodes) of [Love Live! School Idol Project]. It was like watching the Japanese anime version of Pitch Perfect, on steroids.
And I was right, that 3 girls I mentioned earlier are sort of the 3 main girls of the group. And apparently, this anime series is really super popular in Japan at the moment. I didn’t discover a hidden gem, in fact I was late to jump on the bandwagon…
I could go on and on and on about how I love the liveliness of this anime, how I think their songs are quite nice… but I won’t. What I think is so impressive about this anime series are the seiyuus, the voice actresses for the 9 girls.
Usually, in Japan, voice acting and actual acting are two separate professions. Unlike those Disney cartoons where you frequently see Sandra Bullock or Anne Hathaway being lead voice actresses, in Japan you hardly see them crossover to each other’s realm. And most of the time, voice actresses picked this profession because for one reason or another, they feel more comfortable being off screen than on screen.
So you can imagine my shock when I saw videos of the seiyuus for Love Live! coming together and formed a real life μ’s group. Here, I’ll show you comparisons of the anime songs versus the real life versions. Two songs: Start Dash!! and That’s Our Miracle.
What’s more impressive is this real life μ’s are highly popular in Japan too. They have attended most of the major Japanese music shows on TV, and they even had full fledged concerts to perform all the songs that they did in the anime.
I think this is awesome. I definitely prefer these girls to, say… Korean girl groups. After so long, I still think Japanese pop are much more awesome. Pity they prefer to seclude themselves rather than promote to the world.
Anyway, I have finished chasing this series. They have properly closed the story arc of μ’s, so there probably won’t be season 3. If there are, it would be a brand new set of students and groups.