In the year since the 77th generation understudies joined AKB0048, the Deep Galactic Trade Organization [DGTO] and DES have stepped up their attacks on entertainment. In response, AKB0048 brings back the general elections and the center nova position. The understudies are now thrusted into a new competition directly against the successors. But as AKB0048 brings back policies not seen since Acchan's disappearance, a new more powerful enemy is quietly moving behind the scenes.
What would you do to turn your dreams into reality?
It is our names which we cherish the most. They are titles; testaments to who we are and what we have accomplished. Would you be willing to sacrifice your name, along with your home, lover, or family in order to achieve your dreams? AKB0048 is a story of growth. A tale of naive youth struggling to fulfill their ambitions and spread happiness in a dystopian universe weighted under a ban on entertainment. Directed by Kawamori Shoji (Aquarion EVOL, Macross), AKB0048 proves that even an anime about space idols can be enriching and enjoyable.
We are introduced to a planet under the entertainment ban; a wasteland devoid of any color, resources, and enthusiasm where we become acquainted with our lively protagonists. Chained by the irons of desolation, the appearance of a rebel idol group advocating entertainment spurs generation after generation of hope in the hearts of young girls. The bleakness radiating from planets under the entertainment ban juxtapose the vibrancy of unregulated planets. In a universe suffering under the entertainment ban, the dreams of idols come with a heavy burden as they inspire hope and defend the right to enjoy oneself.
Hailing from lush cities to smoggy factories the outrageous cast of fifteen plus girls assemble with the same dream in mind: to succeed the name of an AKB48 member and advertise happiness amidst a broken society. And despite the dauntingly large cast the qualities of each girl were lovably unique, making it quite simple to remember their names. They are the new generation grasping at the chance to become idols that spark the fire of passion in young girls similar to who they once were. The characters are a selling point in any idol show, and they sell very well here.
AKB0048 was inspired from the hugely popular idol group in Japan - AKB48. The show borrows songs produced by this idol group and animates them in a galactic music video fashion. Remixed instrumental versions of classic AKB songs are also present as flavorful BGM. However when the soundtrack truly shines is during performances by NO NAME. In addition to setting the tone of the show during the ending sequences, the bittersweet ballads capture the emotions of the scenes they accompany. The variety of songs will keep anyone interested, whether they are idol fans or not. Not many shows have a truly memorable soundtrack, but AKB0048s is outstanding.
Crisp backdrops of smoldering wastelands, bustling metropolises and primitive alien forests are sharp and immerse you in the world. And while the character designs might take a little getting used to, they begin to grow on you rapidly. During concerts standard animation is replaced with CG models. Yet despite the negativity attributed to CG, the models are well done and dramatically increase the fluidity of the animation while allowing for complicated choreography that couldn't be achieved with standard animation. The fights and concerts are well animated, and the show does not suffer from many bouts of bad quality.
I find I only have two reactions when following currently airing anime. The first reaction isn't really a reaction at all: I download the new episode, watch it, enjoy it somewhat, then eventually finish the show and move on. The second reaction is anticipating every episode whether it’s because of the directing, suspense, characters, or other attachments, and feeling a bittersweet satisfaction as the curtains are drawn on the stage of a quality performance. AKB0048 definitely falls under the second category.
I went in to AKB0048 with low expectations. I was never an idol fan, and the songs of adolescent girls never coincided with my previous tastes in anime, but the reward I received sticking with AKB has left my expectations in shambles. I came expecting mediocrity, but instead I was told a tale of growth. A story of youth in a broken world, willing to sacrifice even their names on a journey to liberate the hearts of humanity. In the end, this show is underappreciated and not even given a chance due to people thinking it’s trying to coast on AKB48’s popularity. In the end, it was a remarkable story with lovable characters in a detailed world. And in the end, you should take a chance and watch this show... who knows, the girls may spark inspiration of your own. read more
I watched this a while ago but I feel like this season had much more fan service (photo shoots) which I really hate. It prevents me from recommending shows to people that otherwise would enjoy them a lot. At any rate, the story is still as insane and fluffy as ever, the characters develop well and its highly satisfying to watch. I feel that the story gets particularly muddled when you have to remember several names of characters: who they represent, who they want to represent, who they should be representing, and ultimately their real name and nicknames. The story also takes some really bizarre and at other times serious and heartfelt turns making the second season both more intense and more fluffy that the first. The climb to the final climax had some of the most suspenseful moments I have yet to experience in anime and this show really took me on a emotional ride. I feel its worth mentioning that this anime was probably one of the most emotion-packed outside of the romance and slice of life genres that I have seen, borderlines a 9 for me. The ending was everything I could have hoped for, I enjoyed this season as much as the first and I highly recommend it. read more
Unlike first season, it failed in the balance between silly magical logic / naive plot and amount of awesome needed to properly excuse it with rule of awesome. Amount of awesome is slightly less than first season, while amount of the former is considerably higher. The disparity is almost enough for the whole thing to fall apart.
So what this results in, is that one moment I'm like ''oh fml this is so retarded/naive I can't possibly recommend this to anyone'' and then next moment I'm like ''fuck me this is so fucking awesome everyone should see this''. First season had more of the latter, second season has more of the former. It could have also worked if it tried to be less dramatic, then it would genre shift into a silly moe comedy with awesome concert battles, and it would be excused one half with rule of funny and other half with rule of awesome.
Some scenes and episodes in second season are really good and really enjoyable to watch. If you're in it just for the moe, you'll have an easier time enjoying it. If you're in it for the story and original setting, you will probably have a hard time not quitting. If you're in it for the awesome and liked the first season, definitely give second season a shot.
Music wise, It's slightly disappointing that most songs are the same ones from first season, but if we count OP/ED, I think there are 4 new ones. OP is not as good as s1, but isn't bad I suppose. ED is quite close to being as good as s1. Other two songs seem okay, but all the really awesome ones are the same ones from s1.
What this show needs is less talk of succession, radiance, elections, competitive spirit, center nova, and the magic of their succession system... and more of political, psychological and social aspect of entertainment ban, and actual fight against it. Then it would have even been a masterpiece.read more