Vantage’s Final Impression
When a penguin finds its mate, they stay together for the rest of their lives.
Rin, will you be my penguin?
To me, it was always unclear what the Idol Fes actually was, but it basically comprised of the various units performing their debut singles live on stage, which this time featured a much larger audience. The presence of long-established veteran idols probably contributed to that turnout, but I’d like to think that the rising popularity of some of our girls helped as well. It must have, if they’re starting to get fan letters! I spent the first half of the episode feeling quite sorry for Minami. She’s been extremely reliable as of late, and it was unfortunate that a combination of anxiety and stress brought her down at the very last minute – it served as a good opportunity for Ranko to get some growth though. I was surprised that Ranko was the one to volunteer – I thought it would be someone like Uzuki for some reason.
Whoever wrote the blackout and downpour twist into the plot must have been a sadistic person. Or maybe they just felt sorry for Mio and wanted to give her a real opportunity to make up for her past misdeeds. Either way, I think it really did pay off in the end, because the way the girls stood up to the challenge and resolved the crisis was wonderful. I know all the units played a part, but I feel like attributing a huge chunk of the credit to New Generations – who, despite standing on a stage that should have attracted a large audience, ended up initially singing to as many people as they did during their shopping mall debut. And yet, this time they kept smiling all the way through, and managed to start coaxing the audience back to watch – and the final turnout by the time of everyone’s group performance was incredible. I guess this is the benefit of watching their career progression from the very beginning. It’s very dubious when it’s early days, but you really notice the difference and can appreciate how far they’re come when they manage to grow their fan-base to that. It’s not like Mika or Sachiko-sama or the other established idols are up there either, it’s just the girls from the Cinderella Project – who hadn’t even gotten all their members when the season first started.
I think this is the first time an episode of Cinderella Girls has reminded me of the original iDOLM@STER anime. It certainly felt really similar – tragedy struck, but all the girls banded together and kept smiling, and things ended up being a success. I loved both Goin! and Evo! Revo! Generation! as well – it’s great that we finally got to hear the latter for real. I suppose this is why there was so much backlash to the stuff that happened with Mio, because in the end this is a feel-good anime, and it’s never been one to display the darker side of what it means to be an idol like some other idol shows do. Oh, and I think this will serve as their true breakout performance, with their popularity sky-rocketing after this like what happened with the 765 Pro girls. It’s taken a long time for us to get to this point, but we’re finally off the ground at last – we might even be getting an antagonist Producer along with a substantive plot. I can’t say I’m particularly invested in any of the girls apart from a select few, but I suppose they’ve cobbled together enough to make something work for this upcoming second cour, which will be airing in Summer 2015.
Until then, have one more shot of Shiburin.
Stay tuned for Eva’s final impressions!