“Like the Takarazuka Revue, the young women who go to the arts academy Kouka Kageki High School play all the parts of musical theater, be they female or male. Ai Narada is a jaded former idol performing female roles—her roommate, playing male roles, is bright-eyed country girl Sarasa Watanabe. From the school to the stage to the rest of their lives, there is no challenge these young women can’t face with their passion for performance.”
(Source: Seven Seas Entertainment)
Dany Muhammad (The Indonesian Anime Times)
Isn’t this a Bushiroad franchise about theatre girls who fight each other? While some might mix up the two, this is not Shoujo Kageki Revue Starlight. Kageki Shoujo!! is a more realistic take on a theatre school without any fantasy element, imaginary fight, or allegory on how the audiences’ interpretation shouldn’t be limited by the creator’s authorial intent. In short, yeah, you won’t find any giraffes here.
Rather than Revue Starlight, Kageki Shoujo!! is closer to a series like act-age. The first episode shows how the characters spend their early days in Kouka Kageki High School, a school specialized in training promising actors and take them to the theatre stage. We are taken to see what happens behind the curtain of the stage. I’m not sure yet how deep it’ll delve into the technical aspects, but we can expect the coming episodes to focus more on the various aspect of theatre performances.
The interesting point in the first episode is the backstory of the main character Ai Narata. She’s a former idol who graduated from her group because of a scandal. Because of this, she develops androphobia and is afraid to be touched by men. The incident also makes her a cynic person who doesn’t believe in other people. It creates problems with the other main character Sarasa Watanabe, a genki girl who attracts attention from the teacher and the student because of her personality and her talent.
It’s easy to diminish Sarasa’s character as a one-dimensional cheerful girl, but her character shines in the second episode. This is probably because the second episode is where the theme of the show is stated. It is a story about dreams versus expectations. All the students want to play the lead character, yet the lead character needs a specific requirement which Sarasa doesn’t have; she’s too tall. However, she is also a rebel. There’s no way she’ll back down, but how will she fight? It will be interesting to see that unfold.
In the end, I think Kageki Shoujo‘s main appeal would be the setting and the main theme. Both of them could provide an interesting conflict for the characters. I just hope that not everything will go easily according to Sarasa’s plan. The clash between her personality and people’s expectation could lead to interesting drama. Besides, what’s the point of having an interesting rebellious character if she can get what she wants easily?
Facts and Figures
|Source material||Manga by Kumiko Saiki|
|Casts||Hiroki Nanami as Sei Satomi
Junichi Suwabe as Mamoru Ando
Kana Hanazawa as Hijiri Nojima
Kengo Takanashi as Akiya Shirakawa
Kenji Nojima as Taichi Narata
Mikako Komatsu as Risa Nakayama
Rico Sasaki as Ayako Yamada
Risae Matsuda as Chika Sawada
Satsumi Matsuda as Chiaki Sawada
Sayaka Senbongi as Sarasa Watanabe
Sumire Uesaka as Sawa Sugimoto
Takehito Koyasu as Kōsaburō Shirakawa
Yō Taichi as Kaoru Hoshino
Yuka Terasaki as Akemi Takei
Yumiri Hanamori as Ai Narata
|Director||Kazuhiro Yoneda (Gleipnir)|
|Character Design||Takahiro Kishida (Baccano!, BTOOM!)|
|Opening Song||“Hoshi no Orchestra” by saji|
|Ending Song||“Hoshi no Tabibito” by Sayaka Senbongi × Yumiri Hanamori|
|Broadcast Date||3 July 2021 (1500 GMT, 2200 WIT), 4 July 2021 (0000 JST)|
Screenshots and Trailer
The Indonesian Anime Times