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Episode Review: Shōnen Hollywood - Holly Stage for 49




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Dop.L



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 682
Location: London
PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2014 6:03 pm Reply with quote
It's great to see this show getting some coverage, as I've been a lot more impressed with it that I'd ever have expected.

I watched the first episode largely because I had nothing better to do and the stuff I really wanted to watch hadn't started yet. But it was cheesy enough to make me want to watch more.

But then I came to realise that yes, it can be cheesy, and yes, it can be campy, but under all it has this strange way of being honest and earnest about things, and I started to feel invested in finding out what happens to these characters.

It's surprisingly interesting.
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Bobduh



Joined: 31 Aug 2014
Posts: 24
PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2014 7:27 pm Reply with quote
Yeah, it's pretty interesting how the camp coexists with the more biting points in this show. It's a strange thing to get used to, but I like the eventual mood it strikes.
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Merida



Joined: 21 Feb 2012
Posts: 1945
PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2014 2:30 am Reply with quote
Nice to see i'm not the only one enjoying this show! I can easily see why this isn't for everyone since it's an odd mix of realism and cheesiness and surprisingly non-fanservice-y (is that even a word?) for a show about a bunch of bishounen. But if you're still willing to give it a chance, it's starting to unfold a pretty unique charm.
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meepsheeps



Joined: 16 Jun 2014
Posts: 399
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 4:35 pm Reply with quote
Glad to see positive criticism for this hidden gem of the summer season.
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Dop.L



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 682
Location: London
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 5:20 pm Reply with quote
The TV music talk show format worked surprisingly well. I'd heard about the Miss Monochrome appearance and wondered how they were going to fit that in, but surprisingly they seemed to pull it off.

The guy in the traditional dress singing the traditional song (Enka?) also worked as a nice contrast.

I totally agree that the conceit was brilliant and perfectly executed. Complete genius.
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KatamariSkill



Joined: 15 Apr 2014
Posts: 13
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 5:26 pm Reply with quote
I started really enjoying this show after episode AIR BOYS. Definitely has a great feel to it.
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Gina Szanboti



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
Posts: 10318
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2014 12:00 am Reply with quote
Episode 10 was certainly...different. Mostly I just stared with my mouth hanging open, embarrassed for everyone except Kou, who pulled off his cloned j-pop act to perfection, and Miss M, who can hardly be embarrassed. The lock-and-key-mute girl's outfit was inexplicably frumpy, and our boys' dance looked like it choreographed by a drunk. The problem of course is that I can't say that any of it didn't ring true.

The hosts were spot on perfect. Great dialog for them. And the peace sign bit was cute. Smile
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Merida



Joined: 21 Feb 2012
Posts: 1945
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2014 1:04 am Reply with quote
I loved this episode! If this show has taught me anything, it's that being an idol basically means enjoying to say/do embarrassing things.Laughing It's kind of a liberating concept, actually. And Kou has certainly taken this to perfection, i'd love to see a spinoff series about him! Very Happy
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Merida



Joined: 21 Feb 2012
Posts: 1945
PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 6:13 am Reply with quote
Episode 11:

I really liked it how in times of spoiler[crisis] the show chooses to focus on the two spoiler["weakest" (in terms of being suited to being an idol)] members of the group and how they are tryng to cope.

So while spoiler[Makki] might be the least talented of the boys, he's firmly set his goal on spoiler[making Shounen Hollywood his home and for that he's willing to come early to practice or hand out (adorably self-drawn) leaflets in the snow.] spoiler[Kakeru] on the other hand always had his doubts about whether this is the right path for him or whether he'd rather go back to his old, quiet life of hanging out with his friends from school. I'm really curious about the show is going to wrap up in the final episodes.

It's a bit of a shame so few people seem to have given this show a chance (or given up on it too early), but i suppose this decidedly "unglamorous" insight into being an idol doesn't appeal to many...
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Gina Szanboti



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
Posts: 10318
PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 11:51 pm Reply with quote
Actually, that "unglamorous insight" into idol-dom was exactly what I'd hoped for after the first episode, but its delivery has been hit and miss for me. They've definitely gone farther than I expected they would at times, but there's still something I can't quite put my finger on that's making this ring not quite true to me.

I guess maybe they're all still a little too "reach people's hearts and make them smile" idealistic and not quite cynical enough or something? I don't know. Maybe I just can't take the Uta-Pri ethic seriously for even five seconds, so in something that's supposed to, and sometimes does feel more realistic, seeing the characters take that same sparkly attitude seriously seems off to me. But maybe you do have to feel that way in order to endure the business. Smile

I did relate to their not wanting to be humilated on stage by a bad performance, and so wanted someone to shoot back at the "practicing more won't sell more tickets" line with, "at least practicing more will insure that we don't prove the people who stayed away were right." And I've always thought it was a tactical error to use the old name for the new group, even if that didn't involve a bunch of lawsuits. Smile So I'm glad to see that finally addressed here.

I almost dropped this a couple of times, and it's never at the top of my list to watch first, but overall I'm glad I stuck it out. Nick's reviews have actually helped a lot. I just hope Funi doesn't get too badly burned on the license for this, because I suspect it's not going to be very big for them.

Btw, does anyone know what the "Holly Stage for 49" means?
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Dop.L



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 682
Location: London
PostPosted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 1:48 pm Reply with quote
I was kind of surprised we didn't see the concert, but the way things went was still pretty good.

Was slightly amused by the seats folding up and disappearing under the floor though. "It's a bit late for a 'Samurai Flamenco' style genre shift", I thought.

It was a much better show than I'd ever expected, and of course it's not the end as it's coming back for a second season next year.

Hope to see Nick reviewing that.
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Merida



Joined: 21 Feb 2012
Posts: 1945
PostPosted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 2:28 pm Reply with quote
Nice ending to a nice little show. I started watching this with very low expectations and would have never expected that i would actually finish, let alone enjoy it as much as i did. I really liked the low-key writing and the lack of over-the-top drama. Looking forward to the second season!

Last edited by Merida on Sun Sep 28, 2014 2:41 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Gina Szanboti



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
Posts: 10318
PostPosted: Sun Sep 28, 2014 2:36 pm Reply with quote
Since the next season is "Holly Stage for 50" maybe they'll finally tell us what it means. At this point I'm thinking the President's age. Smile
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