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Come for the anime, stay for the bouncy stick puppets.

No. Really.

The Set Up

Sore Ga Seiyuu (aka Seiyu’s Life) is an anime about three novice voice actors, and their trials and tribulations. It is mostly fairly light stuff, but doesn’t shy away from showing how hard it can be to make a living as a seiyu.

L to R: Futaba, Rin, and Ichigo (same source)

L to R: Futaba, Rin, and Ichigo (same source)

Novice voice actress Futaba Ichinose meets Ichigo Moesaki, and Rin Kohana when recording begins for the new TV anime Buddha Fighter Bodhisattvon[1]. They quickly become friends, and form the central cast of Sore ga Seiyuu. Futaba and Ichigo work a variety of part time jobs[2] whilst Rin is still in high school.

Dubbing ALL the things

Sore ge Seiyuu is adapted from a yonkoma, and covers a lot of ground quickly. One thing the show seems to be doing is trying to show the full variety of roles a seiyuu can be called upon to deliver.

So far this has included doing a web radio show[3], idol units, promotional events, audiobooks, computer games, dubbing live action films[4], narration for live action shows, etc.

I think the music video for their first single will be the focus of the episode next week.

The Cameos

Oh my stars. The cameos.

One of the recurring features of the series is appearances from famous seiyuu. There’s at least one each episode. Unlike Shirobako, the cameos are under the real names and have often been highly entertaining.

I do wonder how much input each seiyuu has into his or her representation, and Yui Horie in particular comes to mind in this respect[5]:

Yeah, that really wasn’t what Ichigo was expecting. 🙂

The Sore ga Seiyuu Wikipedia page lists the cameos for each episode, along with links to each seiyuu’s bio so it’s worth checking them out.

Sometimes it sucks to be a Seiyuu

Whilst the girls’ careers have been developing nicely, it isn’t all sweetness and light. There is a dark side to being a seiyuu, and Sore ga Seiyuu has been tackling these aspects well.

At one point Ichigo had her electricity and gas cut off because she lost her part time job and couldn’t pay the bills.

Then there was the announcement of an anime for which Futaba had previously recorded a role for a drama CD. Futaba was looking forward to reprising that role… right up until Rin announces on their live web radio show that she has that role. This is an awkward situation not helped by RIn not knowing Futaba’s history with that role.

The resolution preserves the friendship, but that episode in particular felt surprisingly dark for such a usually fluffy show.

BOUNCY STICK PUPPETS!

BOUNCY STICK PUPPETS! :)

BOUNCY STICK PUPPETS! 🙂

Sore ga Seiyuu is a lot of fun to watch but the Evolving End Credits are glorious beyond belief. Basically you have bouncy stick puppet versions of the main characters on the set of their web radio song talking about the episode, singing a boppy song, previewing the next episode, and a “request corner”. The request corner is a verse of another anime OP/ED and just adds to the hilarity.

Here’s one example but they’re all different, and almost half the fun of the show:

Interim Verdict

Sore ga Seiyuu is mostly light fun that will appeal to fans of Shirobako, and especially to Shirobako fans who feel that poor Zuka-chan was hard done by[6].

But that said: come for the anime, stay for the bouncy stick puppets. You won’t regret it.

[1] No, really. It’s a giant robot show to boot and Futaba is voicing the mascot character.

[2] Some of which they even get to keep.

[3] This is a recurring feature as it provides the core excuse to keep the group together.

[4] This was something of a challenge for poor Futaba since it was a zombie film and she’s something of a scaredy cat.

[5] I won’t spoil it, but it was hilarious to watch Ichigo’s illusions being shattered and then rebuilt. It certainly felt honest.

[6] In other words anyone with a heart more or less. Will there ever be a season 2 of Shirobako for Zuka-chan to shine in?