IS P-KUN GONNA GET STABBED
So I really liked the first half of the original iDOLM@STER anime, and the first half of Cinderella Girls not so much. With 765 Pro, the second half moved beyond an entertaining slice-of-life and introduced proper difficulties alongside an actual plot. The question now is thus whether the same will happen with 346 Pro – will Director Mishiro prove to be as good an antagonist as President Kuroi?
I do give them props for managing to make me think that it was Mishiro who was going around stalking P-kun – for some reason, I had this feeling that she was going to deem him unfit and have him replaced or something, after seeing how he does his job and interacts with the girls. If the girls are supposed to be princesses, then Mishiro is the evil stepmother – Mio called her cool, but to me it looked more like they were all on edge around her. Plus, when has Mio ever been right? Mishiro even mentioned Producer’s file, and I immediately thought back to that time when an idol ended up quitting on him – so it was a real surprise to watch her compliment him and tell him to keep up the good work. I mean, if she’s trying to disband all the idol divisions and rebuild them from the ground up, she’ll end up as the supreme baddie anyway, so it all works out in the end.
I don’t even know how this is supposed to be good for 346 Pro. To us viewers at least, this is the best the girls have been doing for thirteen episodes now – there doesn’t seem to be much conflict, everyone is well-settled within their idol units, and everything seems to be going swimmingly. What does it even mean to disband all the current idol divisions – does she mean shaking up the current arrangements and having different idols form new units? How is that supposed to be good for an existing fanbase? She even seemed pleased with New Generations, though I get the feeling that they’re going to be the first in the line of fire.
This week was practically an OVA-type episode, but I guess there were hints as to how the units will end up changing. Halfway through the episode, I was already thinking that in an alternate universe, Karen and Nao could have been Shiburin’s new team mates – Nao (ha ha) it looks like it’s actually happening. Another obvious pairing would be Riina with the fellow rock idol she’s found love with, Natsuki – and unlike New Generations, who really mesh well together, Asterisk is odd no matter how you look at it. While we’re at it, I’d also like to see the Jougasaki sisters together, even though Mika might be too experienced – although I do want some to stay as they are, including Love Laika. Well, I’m sure the girls will be fighting against this sort of change anyway!
Eva is on a semi-hiatus this season, and so I’ll be braving through the rest of this myself. I’m either really lucky or really unlucky, and the sad thing is that I won’t know which one until it’s too late.