I LOVE YOU KANA ARIMAAAAAA!!!! Bruh, I haven’t loved a character this hard for A WHILE. And Kana has me out here acting like one of her fans. I don’t know about anyone else, but Kana absolutely made the show for me. While she isn’t part of the main duo, she essentially has been given the right as a main character of sorts. She was given such an in depth arc that allowed us to really see just where she was coming from, how it affects her and how she’s dealing with it. Not to mention just how relatable it is to watch a character who doesn’t have much self-confidence and is constantly comparing themselves to those around them. I’m pretty sure we’ve all felt that way at one point in our lives and it makes it easy to root for those characters and Kana is no exception.
Despite Ruby’s encouragement from last episode, Kana is still stuck in her negativity. Old habits die hard, but I honestly can’t blame her since what is shown in the crowd just confirms her feelings. It’s hard not to think that the others are so much more popular than you when you see an overwhelming amount of support for your group mates but hardly any for yourself. And considering how Kana is, she’s desperate for validation and to see SOMEONE support her through all of her endeavors. It makes sense for there to be a lot of fans of MEM-cho at the event since she’s already made a name for herself as a streamer. Though I’m sure it must hurt for Kana to see even Ruby getting some support since out of the three, she’s the one with the least amount of exposure. Especially since Kana has been at her career for so many years, but there are hardly any white lights in the crowd. While it’s sad that Kana focuses so much on validation from others, I’d be lying if I said it doesn’t feel disheartening when you put so much time, effort and passion into something and there’s little to no reception for it. While I admit it’s a better mindset to do something for yourself rather than for the validation of others, there’s still a part of us that want our efforts to be recognized. So it can be really hard to continue something if no one else cares.
Because Kana was getting more and more stuck in her head, she seemed to have stopped smiling some time during the performance. But of course Ruby notices and I absolutely love how she wordlessly reminds her to smile. Unfortunately, that just makes Kana fall more into her depressive state of comparison on how Ruby seemingly was born to be an idol. This poor girl just wants to be needed after having so many people turn their backs on her as if she didn’t have anything to offer. So watching Aqua show up and hold up a white glowstick and do the freaking dance again… I literally had to pause the episode and walk away for a moment because I just COULD NOT. I couldn’t believe they brought that back and it was so hilarious. Especially since he did all that with an impassive expression which made it even funnier.
On a more serious note, Aqua was able to give Kana what she needed. Even though he was holding all three glowsticks for each of them, the fact he was holding only Kana’s color in one hand definitely means something. I love how the lyrics to the song they were singing summed up exactly what Kana was feeling in that moment: “If you support me, I’ll give you a huge response.” Seeing someone go out of their way to show support for her, Kana was finally able to put her all into the performance and people NOTICED. As shown with the amount of white lights that showed up in the crowd. I actually had to go back and check to see if there were any white lights in the crowd beforehand. In the very first shot of people with the glowsticks, I saw one white light. But considering we were seeing the crowd from Kana’s perspective most of the time, it made sense that she could have overlooked the white lights that were there previously and only focused on the overwhelming amount of yellow lights and a few red ones. I’m glad that Kana was able to be inspired by the one person supporting her and that she was able to turn her performance around in a big way. Even going as far as to make the unflappable Aqua awestruck. And while she still has a ways to go, she definitely made her second chance with her performance. She doesn’t have stars in her eyes… SHE HAS THE FREAKING GALAXY. Kana has so much potential, she just has to realize and tap into it.
Unlike the previous B-Komachi who seemed to be solely Ai focused, all the members in the new B-Komachi have so much potential to be stars. It almost feels as if they all are able to match each other in possible popularity. Especially with how talented each of them are and the different skills they are able to bring to the table. As soon as I saw the guy with the bandanna, I immediately recognized him as one of Ai’s fans. He was shown several times through out the first episode and even had a close up shot to him shedding a tear after Ai passed away. So of course, I knew he would have something to say about the new B-Komachi. As expected, he felt that group was a far cry from the original. But eventually came to recognize all of them as strong members and also seemed awestruck by Ruby. To which, was pretty obvious since she is Ai’s daughter and it’s possibly he’s subconsciously recognizing her. I also love how it shows a bright star shining in the sky as if Ai was smiling over them. Also can we just take a moment to appreciate that the performance wasn’t CG. Which is honestly incredibly impressive since animating a 2D dance sequence is really hard. Though I feel like they were able to hide a lot of it by the constant camera movement… Which honestly did feel a little disorienting at times.
Also thank goodness it seems as if both Ruby and MEM-cho were able to improve their singing because they sounded so much better as opposed to when we first heard them sing lol.
If I wasn’t already shipping Aqua and Kana before, I sure am now. The fact he went out of his way to be the one Kana supporter in a sea of yellow and red glowsticks, giving her the boost of confidence she needed to keep going, how could I not find that extremely endearing? Aqua literally keeps going out of his way to help Kana when she needs someone most and obvious that Kana genuinely appreciates it. Especially since she’s never had someone like that in her life. Which is both adorable and sad. Also Miyako you sly woman you. The fact that she asked how Akane was doing just so that Kana could hear that Aqua wasn’t actually dating her with genuine feelings… GURL. She KNOWS something is going on between the two and seems to be helping her out in her own way. Bless you, Miyako. And of course once Kana realizes nothing is actually going on between the two, she goes right back to being silly with him. Also LOL at how MEM-cho doesn’t know who to root for now that she’s friends with both Kana and Akane.
But goodness, Kana just ribbing Aqua is really amusing. Especially with how cocky she gets, prompting Aqua to try and put her in her place. Them teasing each other is really cute and silly and I really like how even Ruby comments that Aqua acts like how he was before his trauma happened when he interacts with Kana. It’s like Kana brings out the sillier side in him and I love it.
We’re setting up for a new arc with a stage play of Tokyo Blade, which gives me Touken Ranbu vibes. Stage plays have always been kind of weird to me since actual people acting out anime-isms is just… not natural and weird. It’s fine when it’s in 2D, but once you portray it in real life, I can’t take it seriously. However, since it’ll be portrayed within the anime, I’m sure it won’t be awkward as opposed to watching it be played out in live action. Unless the acting ends up being terrible. Though considering who is being casted for some of the roles, I highly doubt it. It’ll definitely be an interesting arc for sure, especially considering the fact that they’re forcing both Akane and Kana into the same project. Initially, it makes sense considering their careers, but it’s obvious that there is some serious beef between the two aside from just the Aqua situation. As soon as I saw the design of the other character in Tokyo Blade that Aqua’s character could possibly end up with I was like: Please… who ELSE would they have play this role other than the one and only Kana Arima lol. Come on.
While Kana did offer valid advice on not posting where they are in real time, it is a bit suspicious she was out and about in their area. And with the knowledge that Aqua and Akane aren’t actually dating, she’s definitely being quite petty about the whole thing and firing off shots at Akane. Though the pettiness isn’t one-sided as even Akane shows quit a bit of pettiness as well with how she dunks on Kana’s career. The two were equally catty with each other that seems to stem from a deep rooted rivalry. While we don’t know the specifics to their relationship yet, both of them have expressed that the other one should just call it quits at different points. Obviously just wanting the other to get out of their way. Though I must say, Akane’s pettiness of being frustrated at Kana for “stealing all the roles she wanted” just felt incredibly petty. Not to mention just completely downgrading all of her experiences without knowing the inner turmoil Kana was going through during those times. It might be my bias talking, but that did rub me the wrong way. I still don’t really know exactly how I feel about Akane, but that part did nothing in her favor for me.
Though it was cute to see that she seems to still keep in close contact or is interacting with all the other cast members from the reality TV show as shown at the top of her instagram feed. Or at the very least follows them.
Seems like we’ll be meeting much more male characters in this next arc as opposed to all of the female characters we were introduced to this past season. Helps even things out I think. However, it looks like Melt will be making a reappearance and compared to how he was when we first met him, he looks like he’s putting a bit more effort into his acting career and isn’t going to settle with just being a pretty face. To which, good for him. I look forward to see how far he’s come and how he continues. Looks like Aqua’s influence did him some good on taking things more seriously. It will be interesting to see how previous acting compared to how he acts now. Especially since we have seen that he has potential to put on a good performance.
His name is still dumb though lol.
Overall, I’d say they did a fantastic job closing out this first season. While I was expecting the performance to last the entire episode, I still think they did a great job in it not being the true focus of the episode and more along the lines of progressing Kana’s character instead. Though it did feel like an end to an arc rather than a season finale. I just hope that the next season doesn’t completely focus on the love triangle where it becomes a hindrance. However, it does seem as if Aqua is moving his revenge plan along with the next season integrating Lalai Theater. Next season is most likely gonna be a doozy in one form or another and I am HERE for it.
This series is absolutely AMAZING. Considering how good the writing in Kaguya-sama is, there was no doubt in my mind that the writing would be great here too. But I didn’t expect it to be even BETTER. I heard it was good from manga readers but it absolutely blew all of my expectations out of the water. I laughed, I cried, I was filled with so many different emotions, it was great. This series absolutely wrecked me and I still haven’t picked up the pieces yet. They did such a fantastic job adapting this series where I STRUGGLED to not read the manga after every week because it kept me at the edge of my seat and I wanted to see more.
The first episode being an hour and half long was honestly the best move they could have made for this series since I’m sure people would just immediately write it off if they were to split that episode up into three episodes. Interest would have for sure died, especially with how… mmm… questionable Gorou’s feelings for Ai was. However, because they made the premiere essentially a movie, they were able to just cover the entirety of the “prologue” to where we can continue with the actual plot the next episode. They did a great job just setting up the characters moving forward and I’m still forever shocked they killed off Ai so early in the series. She seemed like the poster character and was like: wait… what…? I’m honestly impressed that they were able to endear us to Ai in such a short time because her death HURT. Despite how little time we spent with her, she turned out to be a very interesting character and it’s sad that we didn’t get to spend more time with her. Though it’s obvious that she made a big impression on both the audience and in the story.
All of the characters in this series are very well written and we get to know the reasons behind their actions and sympathize with them. And through out this story, we get to see so many of them falter but are given their second chances to shine. It’ll definitely be interesting to see how far each of them go in this series and if they’ll reach new heights. Everyone has a story, each with their own set of struggles and accomplishments and so far they’ve all been given really good foundations. Ruby especially has such a strong foundation for her character and we understand why she’s putting so much into becoming an idol. While she hasn’t been focused on too much since the time skip, I’m sure she’ll have her time to fully shine since so far she’s only shown to have quite a bit of potential.
Aqua is a bit of a mixed bag for me. While I do sympathize with his situation, I don’t support his want for revenge. The topic of revenge is a bit complicated for me. I understand why someone (in this case Aqua) would want revenge, I just can’t agree with it. Especially when it feels like it never truly solves anything. It’s more or less a selfish desire and in Aqua’s case, it just pushes him to do pretty questionable things that could lead to him getting retribution in some form or another. And like I’ve said in previous posts, I do hope he could find a better path in this new life and for him to not waste it. He had to be brought back for some reason and I do hope he is able to make the most of it. Hopefully find a newfound passion in acting and cherish the people around him.
And then there’s Kana who I have come to absolutely ADORE. But I’m sure everyone already knows that lol. As soon as I saw her, I had this strong feeling I’d like her… but I didn’t expect it to be to this extent. Every time she does something, it just brings a smile to my face. Her internal struggles are incredibly relatable and I could see a little of myself in her as I also tend to downplay my abilities. To which is something I still struggle with today. And watching Kana struggle with her self-esteem and confidence just makes me want to root for her. Thinking about it, I realized that Kana actually ticks off all of the boxes of things that are my weaknesses in terms of characters.
- Abandoned in some form or another
- Wants to be needed/useful that stems from the abandonment
- Has a desperate need to be acknowledged/seen and prove that they matter
- Self-worth issues
I felt so dumb that I didn’t realize that Kana ticked of ALL of these boxes and it just made so much sense as to why I ended up loving her. I always have a large amount of empathy towards characters who struggle through these sorts of things. I think the reason I didn’t realize Kana fell into this category was because this usually applies to guy characters more than girl characters (at least in the series I’ve watched). Now I am desperate to have her nendo in my life whenever it comes out. Kana absolutely made the series for me and I can’t wait to see how she grows and develops in the second season. It’s also interesting to note that both Kana and Akane have exuded Ai in one form or another. Akane is able to emulate how Ai acts, but Kana is able to exude a similar “stardom” as Ai by just being herself. While Akane unnerves Aqua, Kana is able to leave him awestruck.
The visuals in this series was also top tier with everything just looking super vibrant. Not to mention when they made things muted, they always had certain colors popping such as Kana’s red hair during her flashbacks while everything else was grayscale. Animation was pretty consistent and I appreciate the care they put into certain movements, such as the glowstick dances with the babies and with Aqua in the finale lol. You can tell that they put a lot of love and care into this series with just how good it looks through out the season with minimal mishaps. Not to mention they have a freaking youtube channel dedicated to it along with a Vtuber dedicated to MEM-cho. Which is honestly amazing.
Every time someone asked me what I’ve been watching, I would ALWAYS recommend Oshi no Ko because it’s just that good. However, just because the premise is so out there, I could never explain it and give it justice. So I always have to tell them to go into it as blind as possible. There are so many twists and turns that I feel like it has to be experienced rather than read up on it prior. Though I suppose a non-spoilery detail I could drop is that it goes into depth about the entertainment industry. It’s honestly really interesting how deep we get to know the ins and out of the entertainment industry and it’s written in a way where it keeps the audience engaged. There is a sense of realism in this anime despite the fantastical elements and it does so well in expressing it. Especially when it tackles really serious topics such as online bullying and cancel culture.
I’m honestly baffled at how popular it got and it’s one of the few times where it deserves it. I absolutely loved the journey this series took me on and I am definitely looking forward to what will happen in the second season. I’ve been told that the Tokyo Blade arc is a really good one and I’m wondering if I should wait for the anime to come out or just start reading the manga. If people want me to continue in semi-blind (since I have read tv tropes), I won’t read the manga. If no one cares… consider it read lol. In any case, I’m glad to have shared my thoughts and feelings about this series and I will definitely miss watching this week to week. I don’t think I can fully express just how much I’ve come to love series and am eager to see more. This series teeters very close to being a 10/10, but I feel weird giving an incomplete series that score so I’ll give it a solid 9/10 for the time being. Thank you Oshi no Ko for the wonderful ride of a season. Until next time!