Ensemble Stars! Episode 6
I was actually excited for this episode since last episode hyped it up… only to be disappointed. Unfortunately, this episode felt a lot lackluster compared to the previous episode. I was hoping it’d be a lot more dramatic than it was. Probably because this series has a bad habit of telling and not showing. So it wasn’t as impactful as it could have been. I would have liked to see just how Valkyrie fell from the top just to hammer it into us that the system isn’t fair. Throughout this entire episode, hardly ANYTHING was actually shown. I feel like I can’t even properly talk about it because not that much actually happened. We didn’t even see just how Nito left the group in the first place and if his teammates were hurt by this, which is what I was kinda excited to see. But it seems like they stripped that satisfaction away from me.
Initially, I was anxious over just how Valkyrie was going to fall. However, because we were just told that they were losing popularity because of fine, I wasn’t really convinced of the narrative they were telling. Especially since they reused the freaking animation of the Valkyrie performance from last episode. We didn’t even get to see HOW and WHY fine was better. I feel like they’re trying to hype fine up even more before showing us exactly why they are the force that crushed all opposition. Maybe… hopefully… Who am I kidding? This series only talks about things rather than showing it.
It was honestly frustrating to see that Valkyrie NEVER change up how they do things. Same routine, same outfits, same special effects, same song… they really are behind in the times, aren’t they? Though that probably was the point and a big reason as to why they ended up losing as badly as they did. We also never really got to see Itsuki’s thoughts and feelings towards Nito using his current voice, which I was a bit disappointed at. Since it was built up to be such a big thing about Nito showing Itsuki that his new voice had certain charms to it. Unfortunately, we never got to see Itsuki acknowledge his voice on whether it was good or bad. He only acknowledged the fact that Nito and Mika weren’t giving up on performance. Which is fine, I suppose, but it was still anticlimactic to how that plotline ended.
Despite my gripes with the reuse of the animation for their performance, I did feel a little sorry for how things played out for Valkyrie. The entire performance just felt like a feeble attempt at trying to keep their place at the top and it was just painful. Especially given my earlier comment on how they never change up their performance. I can only imagine the panic that must have run through their minds when the power shut off in the middle of their performance. At that moment it was as if everything that made Valkyrie what it was was stripped away in a single freak accident. Nito’s recorded voice was gone. Their backdrop special effects were gone. The only things that remained were the clothes on their backs. And while Mika did a good job at picking the ball back up and basically performing acapella, it still felt like it was far too late for them. Which was cemented further when fine took the stage and the audience roared with life.
The only part I enjoyed in this episode was the introduction to another member of the “Three Eccentrics,” Wataru Hibiki. And wouldn’t you know it, he’s voiced by the same voice actor that plays Nagi in Idolish7. He was honestly a fun character to watch, especially since his entrance involved him riding on a freaking blimp. Now that I think about it, he sort of reminds me of Ayame from Fruits Basket with his mannerisms and flamboyancy. Though he seems to be some sort of combination of Ayame and Nagi honestly lol. However, despite how crazy the guy is, he brings up a pretty big point on whether or not the power going out was an accident. It honestly did feel a bit fishy when that happened and there was a thought in the back of my mind of if it was intentional. I do like the guy’s positivity and how he encourages Nito to move forward from his failures and even pushed him to form a new group. I like him. Now that I think about it, I think I do recall Nito working in the broadcasting room while Trickstar was performing. Looks like he’s upholding his drive to never let what happened to Valkyrie happen to anyone else.
I feel like I didn’t have as much to say about this episode because of how disappointing it turned out to be with Wataru honestly being the best part of the episode. Last week’s episode was actually enjoyable so I was hoping this episode would wrap up the flashback arc well enough. Sadly that wasn’t the case. Hopefully we’ll see Itsuki and Mika again sometime in the future to see how they’re doing and if they’ll join the revolution. Since they were probably some of the ones who were hurt the most by the school’s unfair system.
Also, I’m sensing some sort of connection between Hokuto and Wataru as it seems like Hokuto sported a braid similar to his.
Also, Hokuto, that performance was terrible.