After failing their boss for the last time, yakuza members Kentarou, Ryou, and Kazuhiko are faced with one of two choices: have their organs harvested and sold or take a trip to Thailand for sex reassignment surgery and become pop idols. Now, after a year of excruciating training, the three thugs have been reborn as Airi, Chika, and Mari. Debuting as the amateur idol group The Goku Dolls, the three strive towards becoming top idols.
However, despite the hours of feminizing brainwashing they were forced to endure, the three idols have managed to keep the yakuza spirit alive in their hearts. In order to fix this, their yakuza boss hires Mandarin Kinoshita, a legendary manager who has never had an idol group fail under his management. With their lives now on the line, the reluctant yakuza must work with their new manager to unleash their inner cuteness and become the successful idols that their tyrannical boss can truly be proud of.
You read the synopsis for Back Street Girls: Gokudolls and it's one of the best yet weirdest set-ups for a comedy series I've seen. I was instantly excited to see how everything would unfold in the show and I actually got what I had expected and a little more.
For a sketch comedy, the story was good in that it was entertaining and a lot of the skits had an inter-connectivity to them and a lot characters that appeared early on aren't just there to serve the purpose of the joke being portrayed in that particular sketch alone. One drawback to the story is that there
isn't a strong conclusion to the season although it isn't too detrimental given the nature of the show. Also comedy is subjective and there are definitely some jokes that may be hit or miss depending on who the viewer is.
When it comes the art and animation, the art is actually fine and it lends itself well to the comedy of Back Street Girls: Gokudolls, especially when it comes to what is done with the characters' facial expressions. However it is the animation of the show that is actually atrocious to the point where one almost wants to think it's intentional. Even if that was the case, there is not much excuse for the amount of shaky camera use I saw used in the show.
The sound for the show is pretty standard with a small exception in that because this show is based around a cast of Idol "girls", the insert songs you would here the main characters sing were interesting, catchy and the lyrics were actually very funny as well. Also the Opening and Ending songs for the show ended up being some favorites of mine from the current season.
The characters will definitely be a draw for many people when watching Back Street Girls: Gokudolls. Whether it is the three former yakuza now turned idol girls, their boss Inugane or the many side characters that end up affected in some way or fashion by the Gokudolls.
In conclusion, Back Street Girls: Gokudolls is a show that I think will probably stay underrated. However I wholeheartedly enjoyed it despite its flaws and would encourage anyone reading this to give this anime a try!
Remember Mahou Shoujo Ore from last season? Back Street Girls: Gokudolls is pretty much the same formula, only that if it ever existed in the face of the Yakuza.
The story starts with the main Gokudolls Kan, the 3 men (Ryu, Kazu, Big Bro) who have disobeyed their boss, Inugane-sensei, and from his mouth he demands that the Kan are forced go to Thailand for a sex change, transform their lives to be Gokudolls Niji! Oh dear God, that one hell of a chance taken to be idols-cum-yakuza in disguise taken well. As a certain someone phrased it that if this method exists in the East,
but things are different in the West, it's true.
How this series of events turned into the next...I have absolutely no idea, credits to mangaka Jasmine Gyuh that this series stands out due to things that Japan is still considering every idea that the West would throw out in a jiffy. The story afterwards is a faithful adaptation of the manga: over-the-top and overboard characters in relation to the 3 sex-changed men. Aside from all this, the other characters are an eyesore, especially the fans of the Gokudolls, drooling and spitting their faces all over the idols, of which the girls (ahem, sorry, Yakuza men) try to scrutinize their situations to impress everyone around. And get this, even Inugane-sensei is NOT spared from his divorced wife's Natsuko's ideals, trying all sorts of ways to bring down the Gokudolls...and he immediately becomes a pet in front of her (while claiming he still loves her and whatnot). My impressions? A lot of wackiness and the usual chuckles of vulgarities hurled, but nothing more.
The art and animation...oh good God are they awful: Still shots and lots of shouting commentaries and such everywhere, but that's what the manga did with the aesthetics and I'm still glad that J.C.Staff has director Chiaki Kon aboard to sorta test-bench this series around, and indeed it is controversial. Not her best directed series, but it's passable, I guess? Nonetheless, both aesthetics here are really an acquired taste, so it's either you love or hate it to the grave.
The OST is the only good thing about this series, as it sounds appropriate for the series. I'm not just talking about the stellar presentation of the OP and the idolish feel of the ED, but the songs made by the Gokudolls, courtesy of Inugane-sensei, as is strange as it comes, but it's meh. Whether that sounds good or bad to you is up to your tastes.
One thing to clarify though: Do you realize MAL's tags of Ecchi, comedy and Seinen? The fanservice is over-the-top too, not giving a care about the surroundings, and that might be the only thing I do like about this series. The comedy is a mixed bag though, like it is there for filler.
So, this thirst-inducing series that features idols, transgenders with the Yakuza twist, as unique as it is (I applaud for the producers' experimental trying), it is chock-full of clichés that exists as the main selling point of the show, so if clichés are your thing, try this show out.
To everyone else, please skip this atrocity of a show. This is one of those polarizing shows where the "there will be lovers, there will be haters" argument will forever last. To end this, I'll gladly send off my soul for a sex-change and come back different.
This anime is critically underrated. Perhaps it's just my twisted sense of humor, but this was a classic for me. It goes right along in the same vein as anime like Prison School, Detroit Metal City and Magical With Punie Chan. It's hilarious torture comedy. I do understand that the weirdness of it will turn off many, since the plot surrounds manly Yakuza being turned into idols under threat of death, but people should really give it a chance, because it is hilarious.
Another thing that probably turns people off is the poor animation style, which even I didn't think
was all that great, as it looks kind of like a cheaply drawn animated manga, more than anime, but if you get past that, the jokes will have you dying. Especially in later episodes. In fact, this is probably the only idol related anime I've ever watched to completion and gave a high score to.
It's definitely dirty, raunchy, vulgar comedy, strictly for adults, but if you enjoy that kind of comedy, then you will love this anime. Give it a shot, as it will have you laughing from start to finish.