Hey guys!! Welcome to the first post for a new series on the blog: In My Honest Opinion (IMHO). I abbreviated it to IMHO because if I did not do that the titles may end up being super long. Now this idea is not anything new, normally my opinionated pieces are just put in random shenanigans, but for my more opinionated pieces I wanted to have a special place for them. So it really is not anything actually new…..MOVING ON!!
Now before I get started I just want to say that I do truly love this show. Ever since season one I have been hooked, and no matter what I may say latter on just let me tell you that I AM going to watch season four of UtaPri. I am going to hate on this show quite a bit for a while, but I do truly love this show. It is just that as time has gone on there are a few complaints that I have about where the show is going, and some overall aggravation.
So here is the first post for the series “In My Honest Opinion”:
Just What Exactly is Uta no Prince-sama Trying to Do?
*SPOILER WARNING: THERE ARE SPOILERS AHEAD. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED*
Okay so there are a few things that need to be remember while talking about this. Uta no Prince-sama is based on an otome game, multiples actually, so the usual struggles that anime adaptions of otome games usually have are present as well. All of the main leads are obviously in love with the main character, but she just goes about her day without really thinking about any of them in return. It is not a new problem, but my issues stems from the fact that I feel like the actual story plot has gone to the back burner. But I am getting ahead of myself. Let’s start from the beginning.
The first season (Uta no Prince-sama: Maji Love 1000%) to me was fine. You have the idea of a music school where all of the guys are trying to make names for themselves as idols and have the heroine, Haruka Nanami, be their music composer. We get to know the six main boys, each having their own episode, and then get to see them fight to become a group with Haruka as their composer instead of them fighting over her for who knows how long. So first season was fine. No objections. Regular otome adaption stuff. No serious problems. I was still gung-ho for a season 2.
Then season 2 (Uta no Prince-sama: Maji Love 2000%) comes along. We get introduced to this 7th member, Cecile, who the boys struggle to choose whether they like him and want him to join STARISH or if they want him to get away from Haruka. The boys each have a feature episode but we also get introduced to the four “mentors” the boys will be split up to follow. Okay? New characters…but that’s okay because the formula returns to normal by giving each boy his own episode, again. The last few episodes, however, give us a sort of suspenseful experience by the introduction of the idol group HEAVENS, who fight STARISH for the UtaPri award and whoever loses can no longer be a group. Dramatic right? The STARISH boys end up winning and the second series ends on a good note. The boys got a little more development for each of their characters. The plot was a little more dramatic towards the end. Good season overall.
It was at this point I thought that the series was done. Sure we do not know what happens to STARISH after they won the UtaPri award, but our boys won and that is what matters. Another season would be cool, but what else could they really do? What more could the writers come up with without the show just being super repetitive? But I did not hear anything about another season, so I kind of pushed it to the backburner.
Then Season 3 Came
Now to say I was surprised by the announcement of Uta no Prince-sama: Maji Love Revolutions is an understatement. After 2 years of just basking in the somewhat satisfying ending we were given in the second season, this announcement blew me away. Nevertheless I watched it. This season to me is where things got wacky. The show broke from that regular formula of each boy getting their own feature episode format and decided to do something…..different. The show started with the announcement that QUARTET NIGHT, the idol group the four “mentors” are a part of, are going to audition to sing for this super important sports festival thing. But that does not sit right with the guys from STARISH, they want a chance to perform as well. Okay, now I’m more interested. Yeah! STARISH should fight to perform! I’m hooked let’s keep watching. However, this is where the usual formula is changed…kind of. So instead of all of the STARISH boys getting their own episode, they are grouped into smaller groups of 2 or 3 and are given some job they have to do to help make STARISH as a whole more well known. Okay. Sure. So instead of seven episodes already accounted for we are back down to three. The show then decides to feature each of the QUARTET NIGHT boys in their own episodes, with the STARISH boys acting as background characters for their mentors’ episodes and spent the whole episode like “Wow look how awesome Senpai is!”. Now this is where they lost me. I have been watching UtaPri because of the 7 STARISH boys. Why would now be the time where you push them to the side? Sure the QUARTET NIGHT guys are cool but I don’t care about them! I care about STARISH! That’s why I’m here! Why are these episodes happening? Then..THEN! The auditions for the performance at the sports festival start, after an episode where both groups fight over Haruka. We were nearing the end of the season so the thought process I had was that both groups will perform, we will get a glimpse of some other groups, and then STARISH will win. OH NO! Not only do we not find out who wins and gets to perform at the sports thing, but HEAVENS comes back and has added four new members. WHAT? WHY? And the show ends with the end card saying “See you next season!!”
What? No! What else can happen?
I think this is really where my real problem lies. If you play the otome game, or read through the routes like I did, the game gives each of the boys a little more depth then the show does. Which isn’t the shows fault because they only have so much time to hook us. I think though that maybe if they had added a little bit more of the game’s plot to the show it would have been a little more interesting. What my real question is, however, is what this fourth season will consist of. Obviously it will surround HEAVENS coming back, and the results of who gets to perform at this festival. But what else? What more can the story do? You cannot suddenly bright in some of the otome game stuff. You cannot suddenly reveal that Syo has a heart condition. Sure that would be interesting but considering all the stunts and stuff he has done so far to suddenly bring it up just does not seem likely to me. You cannot suddenly reveal who Otoya’s parents actually are. Well okay, maybe you could do that one but if they return back to the old episode formula there is no way he could handle all of that in the one episode he would be given. It is just hard for me to understand just what exactly UtaPri trying to do. Are they going to go back to the old format? Is QUARTET NIGHT going to get their own time to shine? Or even worse are they going to give each of HEAVENS’ members their own episode?
In the end I just think that UtaPri could have used this third season to develop STARISH even more, but instead they shifted their focus. It just blows my mind that the creators spent two season getting us attached to STARISH only to use the third season for four completely different people. Why not keep developing the characters we have spent so much time with. Why? Why brings HEAVENS back? What are you trying to do? AAHHHH!!!
But no matter how much I complain. No matter how much my twitter timeline may be full of complaints about it. I am going to watch the fourth season of UtaPri. I may have spent this whole post complaining but I promise you I will probably watch the first episode of the fourth season when it premieres this Fall as soon as it comes out. Why? Because despite its flaws I do love this series. QUARTET NIGHT and HEAVENS might not be my favorite aspects but I do love the boys of STARISH, and this series is also what helped fuel my love for Mamoru Miyano and Hiro Shimono. This is a show that is one of my guilty pleasures and no matter how much it angers me, I cannot help but have a soft spot for. Plus, I cannot exactly look a gift horse in the mouth considering the number of anime that actually do get a fourth, or heck even a second or third season.
So that is all that I have for this little rant.What about you guys? Have you seen UtaPri? What did you think of it? Are you looking forward to this fourth season? Anything else you want to add? Let me know down in the comments below!! I hope you enjoyed the first post for the new series and look forward to more in the future. These are more rant related pieces so there are some opinions that may appear in “Random Shenanigans”. I still have not set for sure guidelines of what puts a posts in this series, but I really do hope that you all look forward to more of these. But please do let me know what you think down in the comments below!!
See you next time!!