The great music adventure in Show by Rock!! begins after Cyan decides to play her favorite rhythm game and suddenly gets sucked in, finding herself in a world called Midi City where music reigns supreme. She learns that anyone who delivers amazing and powerful music also has the ability to control the city. However, not all music is pure. An evil plan is set in motion to engulf the whole Midi City in darkness. Is it too late for Cyan to do something?
Cyan Hijirikawa always regards herself as nothing but an ordinary girl living in a mediocre world. She has great talent and extreme guitar skills, but she also lacks the confidence to take the first step in realizing her dream to play in a band and be a music millionaire! Little did she know that an eminent power resides deep within herself—the power to defeat evil with her magical music!
Join Cyan, Chuchu, Retoree and Moa in a world where music is everything.
There was something quite special about it for a short time. It strayed very much on the 'simple' side of entertainment, confident more in the cuteness of its cast than anything else, but damn, it worked. It brought me the same sort of joy I felt back in the Middle Ages when K-ON first started airing. But, as seems to be the trend with most anime, it decided to abandon everything it did well and instead shoehorn in a cheesy, boring action story that the characters were obviously not meant to be a part of. Great.
I remember telling my friends to give the show a shot beyond the first episode, which, at the time, seemed very misleading and unlike anything that came after. And while I would still stick to my comment that there is nowhere near as much CG as the first episode suggests, the actual content of the anime-- its story, its themes-- is that same nonsense over and over again. The interesting bits in the middle of the anime are the actual misleading part.
There is nothing wrong with an anime not being what you expected it to be. Genre shifts, when done effectively, are one of the most powerful techniques in storytelling. It's not necessarily the change in style or genre that is the issue with Show By Rock, but that what it changes to is so half-hearted, so stale and lifeless that you can't help but wonder if, maybe, something went wrong during its production. Half the time it wants to be a light-hearted music show, and the other half it wants to be some deeply emotional battle opera. And as a result it succeeds in being neither.
The melodrama is tiresome, to say the least. Far too little time is spent developing the characters before it is suddenly thrown our way. Five episodes in, nothing meaningful or interesting having occurred with the characters yet, it suddenly acts as though we are supposed to care when the main four's friendship is falling apart. Give me a break. The reason why K-ON-- the anime that Show By Rock clearly wanted to be-- worked so well is because it focused on making us care about the characters long before doing anything dramatic or emotional with them. Drama, if meant to be taken even remotely seriously, is a privilege that must first be earned. Show By Rock does nothing to earn it. It acts as though it is the audience's duty to cry along when the background music urges us to. No thanks. It can take my groans and sighs instead.
And, really, it's stuff like this that is the biggest disappointment, because there's clearly some signs of talent hidden underneath all its problems. During the sixth episode, Cyan sings a love song in order to show her true feelings (demonstrating how important the music - supposedly - is to her), and her seiyuu actually sounds like she's about to break down and cry during it. There is obviously no real emotional response to be had with this scene, but the execution itself is pretty remarkable. If it had actually been put at the end with the rest of the series slowly building up towards it, it could have been a genuinely amazing scene. There's some neat pieces here, but the pieces are arranged so poorly that none of it actually means anything. If you slap pretty things together with no consideration as to how each individual piece works, it will invariably be a mess.
I suppose the addition of four bishounen characters helps add some variety to an otherwise one-note story, but the entire time it just felt as if they were taking precious screentime that could have been better spent developing Cyan and her friends. Or, heck, they could have had their own show instead - at least the stupidity they got themselves involved in was more entertaining than all the drama with the girls. As it stands, it feels like the production team had far too many visions for the anime going on at once, and rather than settle for one, they attempted to incorporate all three or eight of them.
If nothing else, at least the sound and visuals don't entirely suck. The opening is super cute and feels like something that would have come straight out of K-ON, which, in my book, is certainly not a bad thing. The CG, on the other hand, is very much off-putting-- switching between two distinct art styles rarely ever works well-- but it's not frequent enough to truly be bothersome. Even when there is big explosive CG action nonsense going on, it looks fine. It actually carries a sort of professional quality to it, which sets it apart from pretty much all CG in anime. It's just that the traditional 2D stuff is so much more appealing, what with all the adorable faces and poses that Cyan makes...
You've probably guessed from all the complaining, but I am not a very big fan of the show. I cannot recommend watching it unless you are bored out of your mind and possess a bottomless well of patience for mediocrity. You won't be missing anything of great importance if you decide to skip on it and check out something else instead, anyway. I actually had it on-hold for two months without even noticing-- it's that kind of show.
This anime season has given us many great anime to choose from Show by rock has not really been discussed at all or if it has then very little as the season is shortening and alot of the anime in the season are ending it is only right to say I believe show by rock!! is one of the most underrated anime of the entire season.
The story is kinda weird in the beginning but then everything else is something you probably cannot predict it is fun, super nutty and a really easy watch that is worth it. Girl tries to join a band but with
her shy personality she pushes it off and randomly gets sucked into a world where music is the soul of the city new friendships begin confidence builds and monsters must be defeated through the shear power of music and stuff.
The art is definitely something that just pops out it is super vibrant really colorful cute character designs and also great character designs i find it to be very "I cant take my eyes off it" But at times during most of the episodes during when something big is happening characters turn into cute little animals and totally changes the animation into cgi which catches you by suprise but with the unpredictability of the anime. Some will love it and others who like the gritty art work and a dark color scheme will not be drawn to it but one thing you cant say is that it doesn't stick out.
Music is the main theme of the entire show so the music is great a really catchy opening as well as an ending. The music theme is rock so with the japanese rock music the ost is great everything is on point especially since its a rock music anime everything just fits and works.
The characters range from super adorable-Hilarious-Dark and possibly more but from what i have seen you get a cute girl band where all the characters have different personalities but they are all bonded as the show progresses and build a stronger bond. A boy band with super funny guys and again all different personalities but are bonded and the enemies who are trying to corrupt the city. Alot of variety in the cast of characters and everything i wanted i got.
I enjoyed the anime alot and had some of my favourite moments from the anime season with this show also anything that gets me emotionally invested by the end is something i love the ending was super feelsy and could potentially make your eyes water so get the box of tissues also the very end leaves you with a sense of satisfaction.
8/10 - 2nd most underrated anime of the season for me.
Edit: Some changes have been made to the score now that the show has been finished. When reading this review, expect to see a few spoilers.
After 12 episodes of good ol' rock, I can confidently say that Show By Rock has been a very good watch this season. To show an example of what kind of anime it's like, imagine a quirky moe anime that turned out surprisingly fun to watch despite being a bit weirder than other shows of the same category. It's as if you're watching a bizarre fairy tale incorporating catchy rock and cute girls without becoming
a K-on! clone. It's spontaneous, absurd, wacky and easy to watch as you witness four adorable girls and a sexy visual kei band hone and develop their skills while bonding together to become the very best band while protecting their precious world from shady monsters.
A shy girl who wishes to join a band gets to meet other cute girls and have fun together. Sounds simple right? Well imagine that girl suddenly being sucked into a world where producing music is essentially the true meaning to life. Add a twintailed megane tsundere, a cheerful alien, a gorgeous bunnygirl, a talking guitar, an egg for a manager and this absolutely hilarious boyband and you have all the materials you need for an unforgettably interesting show. For the most part, the characters are very attractive and charming and yes, very crazy.
If I were to nitpick about character flaws, it would have to be how the director chose to stick with tropes. It does kind of lead the viewer into being able to predict some character's future actions somewhat based on their behavior contrary to how I said that this show was actually unpredictable. Nonetheless, the story is able to make up for some of the character's predictability
Story- 6.5/10 (CAUTION: This part has a few spoilers!!)
One of the key strengths of this anime is that you never really know what's going to happen in the next episode because each episode gets more and more ridiculous as the story progresses which is mostly due to the characters acting nonsensical but being able to be very likable at the same time.
So then this brings us the question: why did I choose to introduce the characters first and give the story the lowest score? After completing the anime, I realized that there are a few flaws in the main plot.
Despite being centered around Cyan, Show By Rock! unfortunately happens to focus a bit too many of its episodes on Shingancrimsonz to the point where they outshine Cyan and the other members of Plasmagica. The characters themselves are actually quite fine; they are all intriguing to some degree and are very charming. However, the 2-3 episodes that revolve around Shingancrimsonz seemed to de-rail the story progression at times and halt the character development within Plasmagica. Furthermore, this results in moments of awkward pacing. Essentially, rather than the problems having to do with the characters themselves, the anime situated itself in a troublesome and awkward angle where Shingancrimsonz became the main characters and caused an awkward transition back to the main story afterwards. This was something that I simply could not ignore.
On the other hand, in spite of the story becoming off-track, the entire anime itself isn't horrifically affected from those episodes (they were quite enjoyable to be honest). For the most part, the story is actually quite good. It does in fact move forward even during those Shingancrimsonz episodes and actually has a lot of relation to the upcoming events (especially the foreshadowing). Though they were seemingly redundant at times, they were very enjoyable regardless of the weakening in the overall plot. The story is still very bizarre and I can assure you that it won't really get in the way of your enjoyment when watching this show. In fact, I can tell you guys right now, expect to see some crazy stuff going on in the last two episodes!
This is actually a controversial topic since many viewers seem to have divided opinions about the rather unique usage of CG animation. While the characters will be drawn in a traditional style that's at least similar to most animes most of the time , there will be times when a sudden transition will occur which then turns your beloved characters into extremely distorted animal forms. It is an abrupt process that can seem "off balance" to many people. My opinion however is that this transition is so ludicrous and over-the-top that it actually goes well with the entire show since the entire thing is supposed to be eccentric anyway.
Other than that, I can definitely say that the art is nice looking for the most part as Bones Studio utilizes an appealing style of colorful, stylish designs as seen from their previous works such as Space Dandy. The characters move fluidly and the guitar playing seems to match with the songs for the majority of the show. Well what else could you expect from Studio Bones other than a great performance?
This is definitely a major asset of the entire show. An EXTREMELY addicting opening and a catchy ending song along with the numerous insert songs that will get you fired up as if you're in an actual rock concert, I guarantee that you will like this show if you enjoy J-rock to some degree. Hopefully, there will be more crazy guitar solos and shredding in the future episodes because the songs are great so far. The only thing that can possibly make this better is if they add some heavy metal to it. Yeah that would be totally kickass!
EDIT: The background tracks in some parts of the anime are ominous sounding enough where it actually becomes metal! Also, though many parts of the show are light rock, all of the tracks are very melodious to the ears. I highly recommend trying to get a sample listening of the entire soundtrack because it is definitely GLORIOUS. The insert songs are just fabulously good!
I really shouldn't have to explain any more about this part. From what I've described already, you should be able to imagine how much of a wild experience this show will be. I would like to point out that despite Sanrio (the studio that apparently made the original rhythm game) stating that the characters were based for an older male audience, the show can definitely be enjoyed by people of all ages. Both male and females can easily enjoy this show since there is some degree of subtle fan-service (super moe level from Plasmagica and manliness from Shingancrimsonz) though there definitely isn't an excessive amount.
I must emphasize once again that every episode is weird enough to make you want to see more. This show is definitely far from being generic as possible. I mean, it's no Legend of the Galactic Heroes but I can say with confidence that this show is insane! It would make Dante from Devil May Cry very proud if he ever saw these lovable girls rocking their socks off while battling monsters to save their world.
I'm extremely content with the results that Bones has produced in 2015. If you're hesitating to watch this show because of the low score on MAL, stop everything you're doing at the moment and think about giving the show a try. It's seriously better than what you would expect in the first place. I've been watching other shows from Spring 2015 and I can confidently say that this show has been better than otherwise cliche animes (pointing at a certain twin-tailed greek loli goddess and an almost 9-year old loli android who works in an office). This show is definitely a good recommendation for those who want an anime that's easy to follow yet far from generic as possible.
I picked up Show By Rock!! on accident.
I decided, after the very first episode, that it was an extremely happy accident, not to be ignored in the least.
Show By Rock!! is a quirky, wacky, sometimes just plain silly anime about a girl who gets trapped in a magical, musical world with the goal of exterminating the "shadow monsters". Leaving out the talking guitar, cat ears, alien sheep, and the music, you might think you should take this anime seriously.
I warned you.
Even the first episode has an alternate theme song animation that tricks you into thinking it's a K-ON clone. It really isn't.
My Reactions To
The First Episode:
Okay, weak female protagonist is too shy to join a band. Okay, fine. Now she's home playing a song. Good. Now she's playing a cool rythmn game. Something suspicious happens with her phone.
//what the heck is going on//
Show By Rock has a very intriguing story, though it is simple, and for the most part, straightfoward. No next-level crap or complicated plot twists here, just "play music to get to the top and be cool and famous" with a little bit of "defeat these horrible shadow monsters".
I'd have to say, my favorite part was when I realized that Strawberry Heart (aka Mr. Berry) was the Grateful King himself. That was the closest I got to surprised, though I couldn't predict where the story would go, due to the unpredictable nature of the anime in general.
I did find that it got a little slow towards the middle, which is dangerous for anime, as that's when I'm most likely to stop watching.
Aside from explaining the plot itself, there's nothing much else to say here.
Art And Presentation: //8//
I found the art style in general very enjoyable and easy to look at. One interesting part of this particular anime's art style is the fact that it also has a pretty hefty chunk of three-dimensional animation. I, for one, loved that particular aspect of the series, as it was something I hadn't seen yet. (and the 3-d models were all super adorable)
The show presents itself nicely, and there were very few moments where I thought the animation looked awkward, though I'm not usually one to notice animation errors.
The dub was actually well done! This made the show so pleasant to watch, even for someone who usually will watch the subs first. I actually watched a couple episodes near the middle subbed to see how it was, and I actually really wanted to go back to the dub! That doesn't usually happen for me.
Mostly, I didn't pay particular attention to the background music, but the songs in the anime were catchy and fun-sounding. As far as the balancing of volume, I thought it was well-done. Not much to be said here.
Oh boy. Characters usually make or break an anime for me, and I suspect that is the case for many others. I have to say, though I rated Characters a 9, that the main 4 characters actually have fairly predictable character development, maybe besides Moa.
The real reason I rated characters a 9 is for the awesome cast of zany supporting characters that I found enjoyable, and many times relatable.
The other bands have interesting characters, often extremely wacky or exaggerated, but they don't get repetitive. Little details like one band selling mineral water and one band having yokai members really made the experience enjoyable for me.
I am glad, however, that there actually was character development for the main characters, unlike some anime. *cough cough*
I did find it disappointing that Moa, who like I mentioned was the most unpredictable, got less character development than the others.
Overall, I enjoyed this anime a lot, and I think I'm going to re-watch it soon with my sister, who I'm sure will enjoy it. Something I do have to say, though, is that if you don't think you'll like it, still try it. You might actually like it!
While the majority of the internet chooses to adore cats as is, the anime industry believes it better to combine them with cute humans, turning fantasy into reality. Come learn more about the origin and meaning of the term nekomimi... while also cuddling with some cute anime cat girls, of course!