What does it take to conquer the world?! Every leader of the past has thought of it... but all they have done was to merely dream of its greatness. World domination... nobody has been able to achieve it. Until one little girl by the name of Kate Hoshimiya came along. Kate Hoshimiya will shock the world! How was she able to carry out such a magnificent stunt? So frightful! So glorious! Could this be... the Zvezda Plot?! Let the light of our great Zvezda shine upon this land far and wide!
Many kids have big dreams these days. Some wants to win an Olympic Gold Medal for their country. Some wants to date a supermodel. Some wants to become an astronaut when they grow up. But how many kids out there wants to conquer the world? Perhaps not many in the real world but there’s one little girl who really wants to make that dream into a reality. Her name is Kate Hoshimiya. She may be small but has a big dream as leader of the Zvezda, a secret society. Their goal? World conquest.
A trip into this show is one that will first strike you out
as bizarre at first. It’s not just the way the premise is crafted but the execution. Even the first episode extravagantly brings its gags in various forms such as jelly bobs, military tanks, mecha, and a loli dressed like if she’s planning to go to a Halloween party. But despite the silliness of the setup, the show maintains somewhat of a serious vibe. Taken for granted, we learn that no one has yet successfully conquered the world. Now, we have this young girl that tries to take on the impossible.
Standing no taller than a middle school grader, Kate comes off as a young girl full of energy. Perhaps what strikes her character out the most is her commanding way of leading people. Believe it or not, she doesn’t actually suffer from delusions (as in the ‘chuunibyou’ case). Kate’s ambitions are real that are fueled by her words and actions. More importantly is the fact that Kate has followers collectively formed as a group by the name of Zvezda. The series details their journey and trials of conquests that ranges from a variety of subjects. They don’t mess around as the conquests they complete usually require effort that is perhaps surpassed by a normal human is capable of. During their journey, we also meet Asuta Jimon, a young boy that coincidentally runs into Kate during one of her days in life.
Unlike the other members of Zvezda, Asuta has no superpowers of his own. Yet, he is useful for his cooking skills. After all, you can’t fight on an empty stomach. His first encounter with Kate is not only bizarre but comes off as abrupt. Rather than hiding her identity, Kate reveals her goals and who she is. Normally, it would be uncommon for overlords to give out sensitive information. Yet, Kate not only reveals her identity but boasts about her greatness with a large ego. In essence, Kate serves as more of a super villain. Despite this, she does treat her subordinates with respect. She also tends to avoid violence unless a task requires it or something catches her mind in a bind of frustration. But most importantly, she holds together the group through their single-minded task – to conquer the world. You have to wonder how serious this show takes the trope as the story becomes molded with amateurish tactics, lack of common sense, and logic defilement. For what it’s worth, the show is comedic. There’s really no emphasis on a key purpose to the story besides the simple concept of world conquest. Rather than going on with complex plans, the author decides to write this show’s story like an open textbook. Each page tells the story of Kate and her conquests.
An organization as it is, Zvezda composes of no more than seven members. Unlike Asuta, they have their own superpowers that matches their character styles. Some of them fits with the classic stereotypes such as the mad scientist (Natasha), Yasu (super soldier), or Roboko (the brains). Their superpower ranges in wide degrees and collectively does make a force to be reckoned with. Yet, there are some silly gadgets to take notice of. One for instance is their hideout that is initially designed like a playhouse as a “super villain base”. (it even says “Zvevda Secret Society” on the outside!) Then, there are the outfits the characters wear when they go on missions. They are flamboyant and even Kate has to wear an ornamental cape to make a point for herself. We also find out that some of the characters has unusual closeness among its group members while others tend to be oil and water. In retrospect, Zvevda is an organization that we like to feel attached to. Their members, ambitions, and missions they set to carry out shows their attributes as well as clearly pointing their strengths and weaknesses.
Yet as the story progresses on, we find out about opposition against Zvevda. Taking on the name of “White Light”, they are group that stands out as the adversaries. It’s really silly with this setup reflexively if we look closer. It makes it look like the White Light are the bad guys going up against Zvevda. Caught up in the middle is Asuta. And to make matters worse, we learn that some of White Light’s members are acquitted with Asuta in the school norm. There’s a curiosity that should spark to viewers for cases of identity. In which case, Asuta would become a scapegoat because he is in one group that is portrayed as the “super villains” while the good guys (White Light) opposes their goals. As ridiculous as the concept is portrayed, there’s a certain attractiveness with this setup marked with silliness. It should be taken in as granted for a joke rather than something to take by heart.
Having action also means fighting and battles. Whether it’s at home, school, or out in the open world, most of the core characters demonstrates various degree of combat experience. Yet, some of these weapons are so risible that it makes you wonder if it’s all just a big prank in the end. Nonetheless, there are some weapons that are menacing enough to strike fear such as Itsuka’s sharp sword or Natasha’s crafty inventions. Then, there’s absurdity coming from Asuta for his normalcy. Perhaps he’s just too normal and can’t ever conform 100% with Zvevda. More necessary comes with the fact that he needs to acquire superpowers of his own. In the end, Asuta is no more than just a cook despite his ways to help the group. But if we talk about bizarre, action takes it a near imaginative level with its gags and stylish yet artistic way of coordinating its action scenes.
The show comes together other aspects with its formulation. Comedy wise, the show nailed it with its colorful dialogues, gags, and characters. However, do watch out for repetitiveness as some jokes can quickly grow old and stale. One particular episode also plays off as a campaign that may actually be offensive to a certain group of viewers despite being advertised as a parody. On the other hand, mystery becomes a rather weak point. There’s a lack of characterization with nearly all the characters. Thus, do not expect powerful flashbacks or development. Rather, don’t even expect story depth. The show itself is one big wisecrack. Despite being in directed by Tensai Okamura (Darker than Black, Ghost in the Shell, Wolf Rain), the show will feel very different. But being different isn’t necessary faulty. It just takes time to get used to because this show has a contagious fun odor that will catch your attention.
Artwork doesn’t take itself as substantial credit. Instead, it comes off as more goofy and amateurish. But nonetheless, we get a classic feeling of the superhero (or perhaps maybe super villain) atmosphere. The parts that stands out the most in regards to visuals is the way characters are designed. Flamboyant, exuberant, and conspicuous are just a few words that describe our characters’ outfits. The way Kate is designed gives us a way to appreciate her intentions for someone so small yet with a huge ego At the same time she can come off as a brat with her kiddy outfit. On the other hand, there are characters dressed in ways that gives them more a menacing look such as Itsuka’s eyepatch or Gorou’s skullface. Then, there are the obnoxious bits of fan service such as Natasha’s loosely dressed lab coat and even Kate’s outfit herself. But in retrospect, most aspects come together in union. The backgrounds stand out as average. A-1 Works strikes out controversially for some series in the past but here only comes as something just tolerable.
The soundtrack is above moderate in terms of consistency on most parts. But more noticeable is the way characters speak with their diverse mannerisms. Kate for instance has an egoistic way of speech so naturally, expect some words of narcissism to come out of her mouth. Other characters display their personalities with their voices such as Itsuka’s hot-blooded personality, Renge’s innocence, Miki’s elegance, or Roboko’s wisdom. The OST mixes in tune with a combination of rock and rapid pace during action scenes. During more humorous sequences, it attaches a more goofy tone. The OP and ED song are more childish but does make its point.
By the time you finish this show, you’ll feel like a kid again. It’s not just a Halloween party you attended where you dress up and look like someone else. Rather, it’s what you’re doing with yourself and the goals you choose to follow. But being a kid is something we’ve all gone through but for Kate, she has goals beyond what any single child can dream for. Ultimately, this show isn’t something to take for granted like an action packed motion picture. Rather, it’s the fun that never ends that will set yourself to freedom.
Sekai Seifuku tells the story of an eternally young girl attempting to conquer the world with her group called Zvesda, and a boy named Asuta who gets caught up in it all. Hoshimiya Kate, for reasons that are never explained, is a girl who seems to never age while everyone around her does. She, though a reason is never really given, wants to conquer the world and fights against other organziations who try to foil her plan. As you may have already guessed, my main issue with this anime is that they don't explain hardly anything. Characters are given quick backstories that don't make much
sense and the plot is full of filler and doesn't really go anywhere until the last three or so episodes.
The show begins with a high school boy named Jimon Asuta who ran away from home. He is struggling to get food to eat but is determined to make a living on his own and avoid anyone knowing that he has run away. Though, the only person he ever talks to and cares about hiding his situation from is his crush, Renge. Renge is also hiding a secret. She is a member of the group called "White Light" who fights against evil, which is mainly Zvesda. The members of White Light wear masks and uniforms that hide their identity from each other even though it should be blatantly obvious who they all are considering their unique hairstyles still show..... But moving on, Asuta ends up running into a conflict between Zvesda and White Light, is recruited into Zvesda against his will, and now has a place to stay even if it might cause him to lose his life in the process. All of the other members are "quirky" to say the least, and White Light is out to kill all of the members of Zvesda, and Asuta has to adjust to this new lifestyle whether he wants to or not.
The story is very generic for the most part and uninteresting. The characters are all generic except for Kate, and none of them get enough time to develop very much. Asuta is about as unoriginal as a main protagonist can get. He's good at cooking and randomly saving the day but nothing else. Kate is a bit unique, but the anime does a horrible job of explaining anything about her mission or why she's been 7 years old in both mind and body since many of the older characters were kids. The rest of the main characters consist of a scientist, a tsuntsun swordswoman, an ex-gang member and his underling (who is just a terrible comedic relief character with absolutely no redeeming qualities), and a female robot.
The one part of the story I did really enjoy was the anti-smoking (cigarattes, not marijuana) aspect. The one episode completely about anti-smoking is the best one by far, even if it does show how Yasubee is a horrible character which no one should ever trust (seriously, he switches sides out of nowhere and it's just plain stupid how everyone forgives him anyway, especially Gorou). Though it was never explained at all how the villain's smoke powers were even possible in the show's universe.
The animation is good, but some of the character designs are very.... fanservicy. Mainly Kate's (give a 7 year old a revealing outfit, why not?) and Natalia. Aside from that, the character designs still aren't great, but they're not terrible. The scenery in the show is also average, and the action scenes aren't anything too interesting with only decent choreography. The use of CG for larger monsters and weapons also becomes a bit annoying and clashes with the regular animation. The soundtrack is mostly unmemorable with the OP being the only good song.
While I did enjoy some parts of Sekai Seifuku, nothing much really happened. It's just going from point A to point B with a lot of filler in the middle and a few mediocre flashbacks to try and make you feel more attached to the characters that never have anything too bad happen to them anyway. The drama in this show just falls flat and the comedy is only occasionally funny. If not for the anti-smoking episode and some of the few good character interactions, the story would have had nothing unique or good about it. I just never even began to like any of the characters in this show or care if anything bad happened to them. Because of that and all of the other problems, I just could not come to like Sekai Seifuku.
A-1 and Aniplex really scored a hit with this one! In this extremely original, unique series, you get a combination of comedy, action, drama, romance, and even a little fanservice all wrapped into a great little package! The characters are developed very well, as are the relationships and backgrounds of each of the said characters. The plot and how the series develops is extremely unique and entertaining. But also conveys that you can achieve your dreams no matter how small or what gender you are, or what the odds are against you. Every episode has it's own significant story to it and theme to be
taken from it, but all the while adding to the overall plot of the series. You will be continually drawn into this entertaining series more and more as you watch. Great action. Ton of comedy. And an intriguing plot. This is a winner for sure! (Season 2 PLEASE!)
"May the light of Zvezda shine throughout this world!"
I'm recollecting at all the smokers who dropped it on episode 3 lol.
But seriously, while it may not match the top anime, it has a very creative way of being cute. I was personally attracted to all the characters.
If you're looking for criticism... I thought the main character was incredibly pointless as in... you could essentially write him out of the entire story, focus around another character, and it wouldn't affect much at all. Main characters in stories are supposed to have an effect on other characters and perhaps the world... Asuta didn't do any of that. The story moved incredibly fast... perhaps too fast
and all was tied in with extreme silliness which can be a great turn-off for some people looking for something more serious.
Kate's Venera outfit is getting her a lot of slack but if you look at the stereotypical female "super villain" it matches to the outfit themes of them, Kate just so happens to be a loli so people are complaining about it lol.
The cuteness is unique in this anime and the silliness is childish as I feel this anime was meant towards a younger audience. People with more of an imagination can enjoy this anime more - as in people who can just kick back and not think too much into the writing and just enjoy what's being shown to them - while others may be turned off by the lack of seriousness and lack of effort to go truly in-depth with the characters.
Enjoying this anime depends on how much you can lower your expectations and just enjoy a story that's not serious with character backgrounds that are not really told in-depth. Kate's background, however, has room for a ridiculous amount of depth but, as a writer, I feel that her background doesn't make much sense with how she is in the anime I can't really explain it without a spoiler.
But I can overlook that and other things when I realize that I watched an anime that is targeting a younger audience. Sometimes you just need to drop certain "adult" expectations of a story and open your imagination to find the good in it and that's what this anime is about at least for me.
I'm giving the story a 8/10 because I felt it achieved the goal it set out to do which I felt was pretty clear. Not a 10/10 because I felt the story moved a bit too fast. Like there wasn't that much of a build-up it just suddenly came crashing down to a forced conclusion. Even if it is a childish story, build-ups are what I enjoy most and they are extremely important for every story :P
On a side note, there seems to be an episode 13 which is the rumored OVA. They are likely waiting and testing how sales do before deciding on whether or not to make a new season. *PRAYS SALES DO WELL!* I will buy anything they release outside of Japan if that'll help.
Story 8/10 - Already said above.
Art 10/10 - Seriously the quality of the art in this anime is great. I am very pleased.
Sound 10/10 - Some people said Kate's voice is annoying sometimes but I loved it. All the voices, sound effects and especially the opening / ending are awesome!
Characters 9/10 - All the characters were great to me except Asuta hence the 9/10. I explained this in my criticism above too. Kate, Goro and Natalia were my favorites!
Enjoyment 10/10 - If you can watch it without thinking too much about the silliness and lack of in-depth characters and the ruined potential for Kate's backstory, you'll be laughing at the comedy and enjoying the silliness and pretty impressive art and animation. Let's all support our loli overlord Lady Kate Venera to conquer the world! May the light of Zvezda shine throughout the world!