“Love Live! Sunshine!!” Anime Review: Let The Love Live Love Shine Bright Again!

★Writer: Richard K. Moe 

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Behind The Anime:

★Animation ruby-staring-at-a-paperStudio – Sunrise  (Gintama, Cowboy Bebop, Gundam, Love Live!)

★Director – Kazuo Sakai (Love Live! Sunshine!!)

★Series Composition – Jukki Hanada (Love Live! School Idol Project, Kantai Collection, Beyond the Boundary)

Character Design – Yūhei Murota (Love Live! School Idol Project)

★Music –Tatsuya Katou (Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Illya, Celestial Method, Free!)

Story:

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♥ The lovely heroine Chika Takami ♥

In the sea side city of Uchiura, Numazu lies a high school girl by the name of Chika Takami who desires to do something major that’ll impact her life forever. Chika stumbles upon μ’s, the incredibly popular school idol group who won “Love Live”, and immediately becomes inspired to create a school idol group. Along with her best friend You Watanabe, Chika begins to recruit her fellow classmates and friends into the school idol club. Unfortunately Chika and You aren’t so lucky at first. But soon they begin to recruit others with their energetic passion and will. As the group comes together, the members begin to learn of the hardships of being a school idol and the sacrifices that must be made to become one.  

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Review

+Pros

Writing

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  • The country sea side town is a wonderful change in scenery compared to the busy city of the previous series. 
  • Each character at first sight and meeting is overly charming and lovable. (E.G. Chika’s energetic personality is magnetizing. Ruby’s shy and quiet personality is adorable. Mari’s joking and upfront attitude is delightful. Hanamura’s silly fascination with technology is hilarious.) 
  • Every character seems easy to read but there’s always something surprising about them.
  • The protagonist, Chika Takami, is magnetizing and her energetic personality is lovable at first sight. Beautiful Mermaids Resized.gif
  • The script is full of charming humor, cutesy moments, words of encouragement, and convincing moments of melancholy. 
  • The character’s silly reactions and decisions are funny and at times hilarious.
  • It’s entertaining to see Chika and her friends build an idol group from the ground up. (E.G. When Chika and her first members were trying to come up with a group name. When Aqours tried to find their own “style” that’ll get people’s attention. When Aqours shot a P.V. (Promotional Video) to promote themselves.) 
  • Every member of Aquors has something to contribute to the group. (E.G. You’s attentiveness when it comes to body forms and her ability to design costumes. Riko is able to compose music for the group. Yoshiko’s dark angel character helps Mari beachball hit resized.gifthe group garner attention.)
  • The bonds and relationships that the characters create together grows and flows naturally. 
  • Moments that can be perceived as corny and cheesy somehow manages to be miraculous. (E.G. When Chika was literally reaching out to Riko one night to state that “we can do this together”. When the power went out for a performance but Chika still sang with her heart. When Chika let out all the emotions she felt after a performance in Tokyo.) 
  • Moments of hope, contemplation, doubt and happiness are throughly compelling and moving. (E.G. When Chika spoke of how Muse inspired her to move forward and become a school idol. When a miracle happened at Aqours first performance. Give Kanan a hug resized.gifWhen Kanan expressed all her bottled feelings.) 
  • The reality of chasing the dream of being school idols and the emotional impact it can have on someone is talked about and shown.
  • The girls of Aqours actually acknowledge that they aren’t as good as other idol groups and that even good groups don’t always win. 
  • It’s always fascinating to see how each girl joins or is recruited into Aqours. 
  • The influence of µ’s and their story is really apparent in Aqours’s. 
  • The references about µ‘s and the members are very nostalgic. 
  • Every episode is able to surprise you somehow and grab your attention while keeping you on the edge of your seat. 
  • Each episode presents a new problem and is able to solve it by the end of the episode.
  • Every episode is consistently satisfying.
  • The conclusion is satisfying, hopeful, and sensational. 
Directing, Animation, and Artwork

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  • The pacing of the show moves at a natural and comforting speed. 
  • The camera work is insanely impressive. 
  • The cinematic presentation is alluring, engrossing, and breath taking. 
  • Scenes smoothly transition into one another.  
  • The moments where the girls relax and hangout feels as if you are there. 
  • It’s very heart warming to see the girls have a good time. 
  • The performances are graceful and lively. 
  • The last episode’s performance is marvelous and breathtaking. Glamarious Dia!.gif
  • The ending theme’s main vocals will change to a specific member of Aqours if the episode focuses on them.
  • Animation is almost always consistently smooth and fluid.
  • The colors, lighting, and overall visuals of the show are outright gorgeous.
  • CG in dance segments look much better than previous entries.
  • The quality artwork is superb.  
  • The seaside city of Uchiura, Numazu is beautifully designed. 
  • The facial expressions that show off the characters emotions are welly drawn.
Character Designs and Music

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  • Character designs are glamorous and attractive. 
  • There is welly placed music that help make the moments of peace, relaxation, melancholy, and hecticness convincing.
  • The songs that Aqours perform are all catchy, adorable, and sweet.
  • The opening theme, “Aozora Jumping Heart”, by Aqours is a terrific opening song that pumps you up for the episode. 
  • The ending them, “Yume Kataru Yori Yume Utaou”, by Aqours is a great closing song that gives you a feeling of reflection.

-Minor Cons

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  • Although this time around the CG in dance sequences look better compared to previous entries, it’s still a bit unappealing compared to true illustrations. 
  • There are some illustration issues from time to time.

BIASED SCORE: 

perfect-score
★ You are crowned “Best anime of 2016” ★

♥10/10♥

This is Love and Heavenly Perfection! 

 (Reference Source for “Behind The Anime” – Anime News Network)

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