Kageki Shoujo!! – 01

「桜舞い散る木の下で」(Sakura Mai Chiru Konoshita de)
“Beneath the Cherry Tree, in a Rain of Petals”

Kageki Shoujo is a beautifully written, composed and visually engaging show. You don’t want to miss this one!

OP Sequence

OP: 「星のオーケストラ」(Starry Orchestra) by (performed by three-member band saji)

「桜舞い散る木の下で」(Sakura Mai Chiru Konoshita de)
“Beneath the Cherry Tree, in a Rain of Petals”

Kageki Shojo is a show about cute girls doing cute things, but on the stage. Personally, I really liked this first episode, it was such a good introduction to the world and the school that is going to take the center rostrum. Narata Ai (Hanamori Yumiri) is a girl who was part of an idol group called JBX 49 and is now aspiring to become part of one of the most elite troupes in acting. Composed fully of women (one per season) put on extraordinary levels of performance. And that’s the catch of this show, it’s all women, no men perform on the shows. There are male teachers in the school, but that’s their only role.

Kabuki is the old art of performing stories on stage, but for a long time, it has only been dominated by men, who take the role of Onnagata a male who plays a female on stage. Here it’s the same but reversed, female leads play the roles of male characters. Making everyone swoon over how more gentleman they are than the real thing. If a school like this excited, and they did put on the most extravagant shows on earth. Then I do see it happening that females swoon over other females playing males on stage. Confusing? Bear with me. It’s the same infatuation males feel over a male playing an Oyama on a Kabuki stage. 

Don’t fight me over this.

Kouka is the prestigious school where these characters are aiming to be, they create Kabuki-like stages, within a grandiose stage. But only females get to perform. But calling this performance’s Kabuki doesn’t really fit the bill. So I wish there was another word for stage performances with only females. I’ll continue researching into this topic as there is an immense backstory with Kabuki and will bring more of it as episodes progress. 

Ai already graduated from her idol group, and is looking to move onto other arts. When she rides the train a male fan tries to make a conversation with her, but she quickly shows discomfort. Then another fan taps her shoulder, she hates being touched. When she gets out of the train station she meets with Narata Taichi (Nojima Kenji). He gives her a letter, it’s her admission papers, she got in! For somoene that hates being touched, she is familiar with Taichi. They walk along the street, now holding hands. I’m guessing they’re boyfriend, girlfriend in this situation. During the opening ceremony, Ai is taken aback by the beauty of a sakura tree, but it holds a dark presence as it’s common knowledge that standing over the sakura tree before you get admitted into Kouka is bad luck! But Watanabe Sarasa (Senbongi Sayaka) shows up asking Ai for pictures, not Ai herself, but of Sarasa! Ai is perplexed as she was expecting her to ask for pictures of Ai as a fan, not have her take the pictures. It’s a fun moment, that sets the precedent for their relationship. Sarasa is like a happy-go-lucky Inu, while Ai is a shy and reserved Neko. Sarasa radiates warm, while Ai radiates cold. It’s the same dynamic we’ve seen a million times, but it works so perfectly well here it’s hard to ignore. Think of any anime, and I’m sure it has this same dynamic. And it’s even funnier when they get trampled in the same dorm room. Something Ai doesn’t quite like.

Of course, there are more characters, but they haven’t been properly introduced, I’ll talk more about them when they do! 

During their first training, the girls get a curious teacher. He’s from the JSD a military guy is doing their regimen, he’s an old geezer, and starts talking about sexual harassment. It’s played off for laughs at this point, but I wonder how far they’re going to go with this, are they going to use it in a prominent ways that speaks about social norms and culture? Or will it continue to be played as a joke… 

Will, this series goes into the injustice and unbalance that permeates in our culture and make a statement about machismo, feminism, and other such topics? I certainly hope so, as it could give me an outing to speak out about this type of unrest that still to this day runs like a miasma over our society. Nevertheless, this might be a Japan-specific problem, but still, the oil doesn’t run long from the flame. And I’m looking forward to seeing the behind-the-scenes of this school, and how hard they go in their training. And of course the spectacle itself, but I’m sure we’re not seeing that until the later episodes of Kageki Shoujo!!

Either way I’m so down for this!

Full length images : 10


Author: FJ

A young fantasy writer during the night, motion graphics and illustration during the day. Currently living in Mexico. Aspiring to make a feature film.

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