“If The Two Are Together, They Are the Strongest.” The New Approach Of Aikatsu Stars Beyond Friendship?!
Ever heard of the term “Aikatsu!“? It’s an abbreviation for “Idol (Aidoru) Katsudou”, which is translated as “idol activity”. “Aikatsu!” is a cross-media developed project mainly targeted for seven to nine year old girls. Though the popularity has a strong influence among many adults as well, and those who love Aikatsu! as an adult are collectively called “Aikatsu Ojisan (male) or Obasan (female)”. I have crossed featured them in this article: link
Its multimedia expanding started from an arcade collectible card game in Bandai’s Data Carddass line of machines, which launched in October 2012, to television anime adaptation by Sunrise (and later by Bandai Namco Pictures) began airing on TV Tokyo from October 8, 2012. Two movies were released in December 2014 and August 2015. The same setting continued till March 2016, and the series was succeeded by Aikatsu Stars!, which is now on active. As one fan of an Aikatsu! and Aikastu Stars!, I want to reveal the fascinated point of why this project is crazy and amazing it is!!
Friendship or not…?
First let’s look at this tweet.
This tweet is a promotion for “the movie Aikatsu Stars!” which is posted with a conversation by Yume Nijino, the heroine of Aikatsu Stars!, and Rola Sakuraba, rival and friend of Yume. Their conversation can be translated like below:
Yume “Finally, we met again! I thought we are separated forever!”
Rola “That’s what I thought too, but we are together again, because we are fateful rivals.”
Yume “Rola… (blush)”
Rola “Yume… (blush)”
Mahiru (watching) “(They were only getting lost in the theater…)”
This tweet is definitely odd for anime targeted for the main Aikatsu Stars! viewers, who are in elementary school. Not only this, but also other tweets have strong resemblance to yuri, referring to female-female relationship, context. Many Aikatsu! Ojisan and Obasan, including me, were stunned by these kind of approach posted by the official account. Aikatsu! did include yuri context, but not in an explicit way, and instead grown-up fans created those kinds of delusion by their own to fulfill their desire, such as drawing an illustration or manga. However, the official Aikatsu Stars! seems to push these yuri theme that helps out the grown-up fans to imagine and create yuri phantasm.
Events are also friendly for adult fans. Last month, AIKATSU All Night DJ Party was held to celebrate the filming of the new Aikatsu film, and this party was automatically available only for above 18 years old since it was a night party.
On September 3rd, another night event will be available for Aikatsu Ojisan and Obasan. The event is a type of “cheering event”, which is becoming a standard way of watching an animated film these days. The theater allows to bring in penlights and “call & response” to cheer the idols in the screen just which is allowed only for this event. The below video is from Aikatsu! LIVE★Illusion Event.
As a fan, I want to stress that Aikatsu! is Life. Though the target is mainly for young children, the story that idols challenge to become a number 1 idol has a strong influence over adults as well and by watching them sparkle in the screen, builds an unconscious love toward the work “Aikatsu!” There is no late or fast to devote in “Aikatsu!”, so watch or play the game if available.
Aikatsu Stars! Official Website: http://www.aikatsu.net/
Aikatsu Stars! Bandai Data Carddass Official Website: http://www.aikatsu.com/stars/
The Movie Aikatsu Stars! Official Website: http://www.aikatsu-movie.net/
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