on February 23, 2017 by Mitch Jay
Show by Rock!! wouldn’t have been amiss on a children’s TV channel with its aesthetic, emphasis on CGI, and people who turn into talking animal-like beings but this is aimed at adults too, and I can’t say that it was something I particularly enjoyed.
Cyan Hijirikawa is sucked into her phone into another world, Midi City, where everyone loves music and music can be used as a weapon against enemies. Cyan, and her new band, are quickly thrust into an adventure to thwart a plan to plunge Midi City into darkness whilst performing for the cities citizens — they can also switch to and from their animal-forms at will. As you might have guessed, the story is mostly fluff and doesn’t carry much substance. I wasn’t enamoured by the characters either, especially the groups fully male rival band.
The story is mostly fluff and doesn’t carry much substance.
I was surprised to learn that studio Bones animated not only this season but a sequel and a spin-off shorts series. Bones is Show by Rock’s saving grace and the 2D art looks great with plenty of colour and life, and I was quite impressed but then it switches to the chibi CGI characters which was far less exciting. The CGI itself doesn’t look too bad but it’s a really odd design decision to use these models during the performances when none of them have mouths — the CGI already looks a bit out of place amongst the rest of the show, and it’s emphasised by a lack of a very important facial feature. It doesn’t help that I don’t like the CGI designs in the slightest, and I found in general that I wasn’t liking any of the male designs. The female designs aren’t particularly unique themselves though, but their animal features are toned down greatly in comparison to the male characters.
It doesn’t happen too often but the songs have been dubbed over in English and they’re quite catchy, along with the original Japanese versions. The songs themselves are pretty good and the English voice-over is decent too, even if there is a little too much screaming for my liking. Bryn Apprill, Alexis Tipton Caitlin Glass, Monica Rial, Christopher R. Sabat and Sonny Strait are amongst the English cast and despite their character’s being rather annoying, I can’t fault their performances or their ability to sing.
The songs have been dubbed over in English and they’re quite catchy, along with the original Japanese versions.
Show by Rock!! isn’t a show for me but who knows, you might enjoy it! It has plenty of fluff and is very light-hearted, but has a fair bit of action to break it up. Sadly, it never really goes anywhere and didn’t keep my attention, and I could happily not watch the second season and not feel as if I’m missing out. It has some stunning visuals and fantastic voice talent on-board but the story and characters weren’t captivating me, and it’s too easy to grow tired of the cast within a few episodes. I’ve said it before but man, the male characters (almost entirely) got it rough in this show and they were a struggle to watch, and I never really liked the CGI models. I might’ve dug this when I was much younger and it was on a children’s channel but this didn’t entice me at all.