Haruka Nanami, an aspiring composer from the countryside, longs to write music for her beloved idol, Hayato Ichinose. Determined to accomplish this goal, she enrolls into Saotome Academy, a highly regarded vocational school for the performing arts.
Upon her arrival, Haruka soon learns that everyone on staff, including the headmaster, is either an idol, a composer, or a poet. To top it all off, she is surrounded by incredibly talented future idols and composers, and the competition among the students is fierce; with the possibility of recruitment by the Shining Agency upon graduation, the stakes are incredibly high. As she strives to reach her dream at the academy, one fateful night, a series of events lead Haruka to a mysterious man standing in the moonlight, and he seems a bit familiar...
To put it bluntly, don't watch Uta no☆Prince-sama♪ Maji Love 1000%.
Some exceptions to this rule are as follows:
- If you're competing with a friend at a drinking game (drink every time the lead girl stutters, you'll lose consciousness fast - you're welcome).
There are no other exceptions . . . only excruciating elaboration.
Uta no star prince hyphen sama music note maji love 1000 percent sign (it has not earnt the familiarity of UtaPri with me) is a depressingly high-budget anime of a dating sim aimed towards women. Ostensibly about the power of music, love and friendship, it is, realistically speaking, actually about jack shit.
Our protagonist is a modern day Yamato Nadeshiko with eyes the colour of soup, who wears a short skirt and can't do anything by herself, except play piano. So of course she enters a prestigious idol-making music academy (disguised as a gigolo school) where the ratio of male to female students is astonishingly unbalanced. Despite a personality that is as inviting as her pet cactus and terrifying, terrifying eyes she manages to attract several of potential suitors, apparently through magic, or, as yaoi would put it "sex smell". By the end of this 13 episode series (or, as I like to think of it, six and a half hours of my life I will never get back) Soup-chan has to pick one of the guys to duet with for her graduation audition. Thus the achingly vacuous reverse-harem sausagefest begins.
Daringly, unlike several music-based anime series that came before it, such as Nodame Cantabile, Detroit Metal City, Beck, K-On!, and so on, Uta no☆Prince-sama♪ Maji Love 1000% decides to forego having any listenable music tracks in its OST. The OP is as dull as the protagonist's personality and the ED (which you will hear in various instrumental and acapella forms throughout) is the musical equivalent of putting a cotton bud too far in your ear and experiencing the crippling though dull facial pain that follows. Other tracks in the OST are just forgettable.
Like a song that's so cute it angers you, the talented vocal cast in this show fail to shine. Miyuki Sawashiro, for example, is just incessantly irritating as the voice of our main character - and similarly with Mamoru Miyano, as all I wanted to do was give his character a surprise tracheotomy with a pen for that goddamn vibrato he used in every song. It's the same with the other voice actors, though those two were particularly grating. Most of the male characters, except the slightly shady evil twins and split personalities, of course, have bizarrely high voices in a desperate bid to sound cute. Or maybe there's an implicit rule that all male Japanese singers are eunuchs, I don't know.
The concept of a music academy that caters to exclusively creating idols that sing pop songs, rather than to cultivate actual talent, is an apt metaphor for this anime.
On the surface the art is pretty, bright and cheerful, but it soon becomes clear how the studio cut corners with the budget - the horrific spasms the male characters experience when dancing, the occasionally over-bright scenes where characters are standing in thick fog though they are indoors, and - I can't express my anger enough over this - the chibi. It's like the art director (cunningly disguised as the manager of Death Records) went "bitches love chibi, give them MORE chibi, FUCK!" and that is what they did. If I had a drink every time there was chibi, I would be dead.
Though I enjoyed hating this anime, and laughing at the incredible stupidity (talking to her grandmother in her head - presumably her grandmother is dead - presumably that cat has the spirit of her grandmother - did her grandmother just turn into a bishie?), there is a more serious issue with this show. That is, the reason for its very existence - to perpetuate the kind of obsessive fan culture that encourages people to watch pretty boys in every stereotype you can imagine, from sweet to suave and silly to tsundere, have ~subtext~ with each other while still being interested in the [insert yourself here] main role. The same kind of people that would buy the merchandise and image CDs. It leaves a pretty sour taste in my mouth.
Much like staring into our lead girl's eyes, watching this anime, you will realise it has no soul - and that watching it probably devalues your own. Like an egotistical person, the show is admittedly pretty, but, boy, doesn't it know it.read more
Story [7/10]: The concept of having a music academy to train students to become future idols. That itself sounds really interesting. In the 2nd episode there was good development in the story through assignment given to the students where one has to compose other to write lyrics and record it. Alas such challenges were never shown after ep 2. The heroine has been given extra special attention by all the guys right from ep 1 without any reason(maybe typical of a reverse harem). A big letdown. I mean why cant the feelings develop slowly as the days of all characters together progress. Pace of the story is really slow in terms of development. Episodes are wasted on introducing all the guys (6 + one magical creature/guy perhaps- yeah talking about Cecile) no excitment to watch except seing the bishonens in different angles. The way the story is revealed looks very plastic- unrealistic and made up for visual feast to the girls exclusively. The only other good point storywise is the continuity it has kept from one episode to the next. Inspite of all this I dont know why but I am still continuing to watch the show. So if you are okay with a not too interesting plot development then go on ahead to watch.
Art [10/10]: No doubt in this. All the guys are awesome. Haruka's eyes though is a heavy disappointment. I actually avoid looking too much in her eyes (cause then maybe I'll get hypnotised :P). Background scenery is good. The campus seems really beautiful.
Sound [10/10]: Need I say anything about this. AWESOME SONGS!!!! Just listen to the tunes and you'll be fluttering like a leaf in the wind. Voice actors all have done a good job for their characters as well. AWESOME SONGS
Characters [8/10]: All guys have a distinct personality. Though I would have preferred genuinely smiling characters as a change. i mean come on, you cant have an expression like this =.= all the time and expect the audience's mindset to change forcefully towards the character by suddenly seeing him singing and dancing. Smile is a must while performing (well with expections of course for songs which are supposed to be grim). And it is the only thing that also adds vibrance to the idol image of the character. Still most of the guys have this feature so its all good. and Haruka completely fails to give any impact on screen for me. Her personality is absolutely weak. Even Ringo the supporting character has her screen presence felt.
Overall [8/10]: I give this ratings because of the following points:
1) Pop music theme. This is the first series which I actually came across with a full fledged pop music theme. Though I agree skip beat also had some of it.
No interesting scenes showing the actual process of training students to be future idols. Though i have to admit songs are groovy in each episode. Wait songs are AWESOME. Amazing grace !!!!!
All in all its the kind of show to get caught up watching in all the hype.read more
What you will find in this anime is a group of cute guys who are pros at music.
~Story: There is nothing particularly special about the plot of UtaPri. It follows the journey of a girl who got accepted to a very extravagant music school. There she met a group of cute guys who gradually got to love her music. This anime is a typical reverse harem. Do not expect to find any major plot twists because UtaPri is quite light-hearted and often uses comedy.
~Art: The first time I looked at the main girl character, I was like "Why does she have such creepy eyes?!" I have to say the other characters' eyes are less creepy and look more normal. The art of UtaPri really has an elegant tone to it(please excuse the times when they dance like robots). What I really like about the visuals in UtaPri is the colors. There is always a happy feeling in this anime because of the use of a range of colors.
~Sound: UtaPri is an anime about music. I am sure anyone would be disappointed if this aspect of the anime was not done well. i think that the background soundtrack is quite suitable. The singing however has been the part that I really enjoyed. When people keep asking the question "Can music change the world?", I really have to give a yes as an answer. I felt that the songs in UtaPri are all quite emotional.
~Character: Every character has been briefly explored in the anime. I haven't played the game UtaPri but after reading Wikipedia, I would assume that it is a lot more detailed and the characters are more thoroughly explained. While all sharing the love for music, the characters each have their own distinct personality. Each of the characters is assigned with a certain color. Sometimes, I find that the colors really expresses their personality.
~Enjoyment: I wouldn't say that I really like this anime. The only enjoyment I got from watching UtaPri came from the voices. I have to admit that I only watched this anime because Mamoru Miyano starred in it. For me, the singing has made the best moments for me in UtaPri.
If you like a short anime based around music or enjoys watching a reverse harem with cute guys, UtaPri is the anime for you.read more
At surface level this appears to be another reverse-harem otome kind of anime, but it’s actually much better than that. There is a reverse harem element, with all 6 of the guys vying for Haruka's attention, but there isn’t any actual romance (well, a little), which makes it an oddity amongst the shoujo genre. The biggest draw for me when watching was that Haruka, while still the female party of a massive love-hexagon, doesn’t just fall into the shadows and become a Mary-Sue type character; she’s a great female lead, and without her personality the way that it is, there’s no way any of this would’ve happened. She is the reason things turn out the way they do.
Of course, the biggest audience for this anime is young females, as there are many sexy guys, and each of them has their own distinct personality, some clashing violently with others, some of which are not very common in shoujo anime: the obliviously innocent one, the stoic serious one, the childish-yet-yandere one, the tsundere, the ladies man, and the I’m-gonna-close-myself-off-to-you-because-I-don’t-want-your-help-but-I’ll-warm-up-to-you-eventually one. And each one of them is hot as hell. (There’s also plenty of room for yaoi ships, which is a plus but doesn’t draw interest away from the actual plot.)
The other supporting characters were great as well. There was the best friend who, while she could be considered prettier than our heroine, doesn’t out-shine her but instead plays a big role just as being her friend. There’s the headmaster, who… I just don’t know with this guy. And there’s a trap character! Haruka’s teacher is a crossdresser, and boy does he make an attractive lady. Other sub-characters are interesting as well, and I’m glad that they weren’t just there to be, well, there.
Animation-wise, it’s very smooth and pretty. Characters are well fleshed-out and look amazing (Haruka has the prettiest eyes on any anime female ever and you can’t tell me otherwise), and the plot is decent. In fact, the plot is not very good compared to how amazing the rest of it is. There are multiple plot holes, parts that don’t make sense, things that move too slow, and the ending has a giant “where the fuck did this come from?” moment (there was something to do with magic and cats and Greek Muses and God damn he’s hot), but overall it wasn’t horrible, there was good comedic moments, and even the minor characters are very interesting to watch.
Then there’s the music: HOLY HELL is there good music, but in an anime that’s all about music, did you really expect anything less? The opening is good, maybe not the best, but the ending? “Maji Love 1000%” is amazingly good. This is one of the few rare instances where the ending theme out-shines the opening theme, and it makes us sit through the credits every time, just to listen to it all. The music within the show is also great; the songs are straight from the character’s hearts, and they’re sung with such passion that it pulls you in and really makes you listen.
Overall I think this is definitely worth your time to watch as it's very interesting and entertaining. read more
Studying in real life requires a lot of hard work we sometimes wish studying should be a bit more fun and interesting like the ones we use to see in animes. So, given a chance to be your ideal anime character, which anime school would you like to study?