AKB0048 Episode 4: Frustrations
“What’s the big deal? The singing and dancing…all I care about is avenging my father.”
The understudies watch a live concert by AKB0048, and go backstage afterwards to meet the opening act – the 75th generation understudies, known as the “Cursed Generation”. One of the members, Kanata, turns out to be Sonata’s onee-chan, and disapproves of her joining 0048 due to the harsh life that sometimes doesn’t always pay off. This is quickly proven during their first practice the next day, where some harsh words from Chieri causes Kanata to run off, crying.
It’s interesting that the last two people joining the understudy “group” were actually already understudies from a past generation – the Cursed 75th Generation, named for its high rate of either failure or dropping out. What surprised me was that even after 2 years, they’re still there as trainees, with no mention of getting promoted to be a successor. And Nagisa & Co are the 77th generation…so what happened to the 76th?
It’s not that they aren’t good, (because as Chieri said, their level is around that of the proper members) but more a problem to do with the whole ability to shine like an idol should, similar to that time when the Kirara shone for Nagisa. Maybe the manager thinks that Kanata and Mimori don’t have that radiance, and it was bluntly put when the crowd at the concert never got excited at all until the real AKB0048 members turned up.
Perhaps the lack of being a true idol, in Kanata’s case, comes from the fact that all she wants is revenge against DES, and never joined 0048 because she loved to sing. Secretly though, I’m sure she doesn’t hate singing, and just has to let herself accept the situation and slowly grow to love what she does. Her motive behind not allowing Sonata to continue was huge foreshadowing – I think there’s something more than just the tired dance workouts and routines. What was especially chilling was the need to have the “soul of an idol”, which may or may not be a literal thing.
The little bit over the “center” of the group was interesting as well. From what I gathered, the center is the person that leads the group and coordinates everything, something like a de facto leader of sorts. I’m guessing that would be someone like Takamina, Yuko or Acchan (though she’s leaving, both in the anime and IRL) but in terms of the 77th gen, Nagisa or Chieri seems to be fit for the job. They’re pretty much main characters anyway.
It was quite an uneventful episode overall, but that’s to be expected given how much action and tension we’ve been subjected to over the past few weeks. Onwards with the training arc!
“I’m counting on the more experienced members to set a good example”.
- Chieri…why you so cold~ And after not being a morning person as well.