Anime Review - AKB0048

Introduction:

I picked up this series after reading about it in a Japanese magazine about up-and-coming animes. It looked interesting, albeit out of the categories that I typically watch. However, I was pleasantly suprised by the series, and became a fan from Episode 1.

Some spoilers ensue! Look out!

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Synopsis:

AKB0048 follows a group of young, teenage girl as they climb their way towards stardom in an intergalactic future where entertainment is banned.

Despite the title, the anime focuses on the 77th Generation understudies who are training to become illegal idols and succeed members of AKB0048.

Plot/Setting:

As mentioned above, AKB0048 is set in a future where entertainment is banned. A group of idols who share the same name as the anime travel through the stars to visit planets underneath the Entertainment Ban to hold illegal concerts. The main antagonists of the first season, DES, are a group that harness guns and mechas against the young girls to stop them from spreading music and holding concerts.

The story starts with a flashback that four of the main characters have to when they saw their first 00 concert. Their planet battles with the Entertainment Ban throughout the anime, and during the time they saw the concert, the Ban was in full effect. This struck hope and joy in to the hearts of the four girls:

Nagisa Motomiya, a girl with short pink hair and a ponytail with a ribbon on one side.

Chieri Sono, the daughter of a powerful buisinessman, with long, wavy blue hair and a bun on one side.

Orine Aida, a girl with medium-length light pink hair, and wears a headband.

Yuka Ichijo, a girl with long blonde pigtails and a fiery temper.

These four girls make a pact with each other to grow up and join AKB0048 one day.

During school, Yuka shows Nagisa an audition posting for 00, and they decide to take their chances and audition, even with the Entertainment Ban. A series of complications arrive as they set out for auditions, and eventually, they all make it in to No Name, which is the group of understudies.

The rest of the anime follows them as they progress on their paths to become successors.

Characters:

The character designs of every girl, from understudy to successor, are long-thought-out and detailed. Each one is beautiful in their own way, and this leads to fights (which are quickly resolved), and deep, bonding friendships.

My favorite character for the first season was probably Takamina, the 'leader' of the successors. Honestly, I adore all the characters in the anime, as each ellicits adoration in their own way from viewers.

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The Good:

The animation quality is beautiful, and there is a 3-D effect that takes place whenever the music is playing and the girls are dancing. The colors are bright and vibrant, and the storyline is one that doesn't get old as time passes. The music is borrowed from the J-Pop band AKB48, who the anime was based off of. Many of the characters vaguely resemble the AKB48 members.

The Bad:

The transition in to the 3-D effect for the first half of the anime is awkward and hard to follow. This improves drastically as time goes on, but the first few episodes' concerts are almost difficult to watch because of this.

The Ugly:

The anime follows the idea of purity in idols, but there are many, many bath-house scenes and risque photo shoots throughout the anime, which is where it faltered.

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Overall Score:

10/10

This anime may have its' flaws, but they are taken well in-stride and do not affect the general idea of the anime. The characters, plot, and animation fit well together, and the personalities of the successors and the trainees are likeable and contagious.

Highly recommended.



Opening and Ending

AKB0048

The successors.
The successors.

No Name

The understudies.
The understudies.

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