B-Project, a multimedia project that started off with character songs (eventually adding drama parts to the CDs), eventually got a manga and an anime and their next project will be a mobile app. Of course, B-Project is all about idol boys and their hardships.
A-1 Pictures took on the job to do the animation with 12 episodes, about half an hour each. A-1 Pictures also did animation for Utapri, Togainu no Chi and Ace Attorney. Rest assured knowing their past record with perfect quality animation we can expect great quality animation with B-Project the Japanese Anime. Amirite guys?
Jk it was fucking shit.
According to wikipedia B-Project is a “Japanese anime” (funny seeing how the word anime is associated with the meaning of ‘Japanese animation’) and written by the creators of Utapri. Whether it was written by the anime staff or the game staff it is unsure, and whether it is really written by the creators of Utapri is unknown to me. One thing for sure its not by the same director (the director for B-Project also directed Kodomo no Jikan…)
Anyway I’m sorry if it offended anyone if I say this anime was shit but it really was kinda shit. I’m not saying B-Project as a whole is shit, its just that the anime prolly didn’t do it justice as to give good content to the fans, but any content is good content when it comes to fans so I guess this anime may have been ok with you guys. I’ve marathoned worser anime, for this one it was kind of disappointingly shit and in the end the last episode felt rushed to hell that some parts didn’t make sense.
Looking back on A-1 Pictures track records, you can see how lazy they can get with their animation and how things can drop terribly in quality. Seeing that Utapri has become more and more popular and is racking in the cash, they improved the animation quality for it as the seasons go by and the first episodes look really good, but eventually in the last episodes it gets really fucking shitty in quality of animation.
Utapri Season 3 — Episode 1 vs Final Episode
B-Pro — Episode 1 vs Final Episode
Note: Ryuji (black hair with pink streak guy) is somehow huge in the second picture than most of the guys despite being the smallest member
Of course they put more details in close ups while far away shots have lower quality, but when most of the dance routine is the far away shots it gets pretty jarring in the lack of quality put into it. I guess no one can get to Tsukiuta level of dance routine (then again it was done with 3D models but at least it wasn’t the shit kind they used in Utapri Season 3 when they put the 3D models in the far away shots).
There’s a lot of comparisons you can do between Utapri and B-Project. One thing is that B-Project doesn’t use 3D models for their dancing/ending themes (yet) but the animation is still kind of bad. They seemed to go for making music videos in each episode for the song of the week like in Utapri when the guys suddenly get transported to some fantasy world and their song plays in the background. However sometimes they just inserted the song at a random dialogue scene where its drowned out by the dialogue so you can’t really enjoy it. Sometimes episodes seem to be there just for the song, like that one episode where “the ghost of Okita” is possessing everyone and they have a music video built off that and that was the episode… also we found out that Momotaro has supernatural perception.
There they go, ascending to heaven
Maybe they were going for the Utapri formula but then got a bit lazy in some parts and just threw in songs at random. Sometimes theres Music Video moments where they flashback to the time they were children and playing with their boyfriend and thinking about the good ol times with their duet playing in the background for no exact reason other than to establish “Hey they’re really close friends do you not see it??”. Purely platonic my bro.
When Matsunaga Kazuna dropped his heart breaking backstory about him trying to find his mother theres his solo part singing about his feelings in the background but you can’t really hear it over the dialogue and it all gets jumbled up. And you know what. They never mentioned about him finding his mother or his mother at all after that episode.
Each episode consists of the group getting a job to help promote/improve B-Pro and then something going wrong/conflict and then a resolve, then it may or may not be mentioned again once in a later episode and then forgotten. It’s kind of like a soap opera. In one ep Ryuji bumped his head and forgot everything and everyone was kinda being angsty esp for his bf Tomohisa but then its alright because he gets his memory back in the end and it did not give much to the plot except for “Hey did you know Ryuji is very important to Tomohisa and vice versa?”. I already knew my bro, I already knew. Tho we also found out that Ryuji’s family is a piece of shit for not visiting in the hospital. I guess those moments to show off their relationships is important to those who don’t know B-Pro.
Tbh the first major half of the episodes felt like were fillers until the last act of the series which to be honest was pretty good. In my opinion, the episodes got better at Episode 9 and up. The plot got better, we actually got a better delivery on a character’s backstory (Kento Aizome in particular, ep9 made me appreciate him more than out of all the characters) and there were some good twists in there. The buildup to the final climax & ending was pretty good but it was too bad that the ending was rushed in episode 12 seeing that it left some questions unanswered like [Highlight to read spoiler] who is Tsubasa’s father? Did I miss something? Also why did Tsubasa’s father kill Yashamaru’s family, how did he kill them? Who was Yashamaru before he started B-Project to be the tools of his revenge? Theres so much backstory we needed on this subplot of Tsubasa and Yashamaru that I wished were put into the anime rather than filler episodes because it was pretty good and got me intrigued. Also one big question I have is how the fuck did B-Pro get out of a plane in mid-air in one piece and manage to get to Japan Dome? Game Theory going around is that they all died and the last minutes of the episode are just Tsubasa having delusions/hallucinations from her grief. But thats just a theory. A Game Theory™.
Anyway I just wished they didn’t rush the ending because the revelations, betrayal and the truth in the last few episodes were pretty good. It would’ve made a better plot than “Idols doing things, conflict happens, conflict resolves”. Like, please put more effort into it. Just because its an idol anime doesn’t mean it can’t do things beyond the stereotype of idols just singing. Look at Enstars for example, its about Idols and school life but its also about this hierarchy and trying to break from that and create a revolution to make all idols shine in their own way and equally (or something like that, all I remember is the revolution bit).
As for it being called a ‘reverse harem’, I wouldn’t really call it that lol. Despite being a bunch of boys and one girl it doesn’t have much romance going on. Except for that small scene with Tsubasa and Aizome where Aizome talked about how he’s empty and only the company of girls make him feel alive and Tsubasa was sort of tricked into saying that she liked him, even his empty insides. It was a pretty cute scene but thats just about it. Oh yeah, Tomohisa kissed Tsubasa while she was asleep but thats a bit more creepy lol.
Talking about Tsubasa, I wished they let her have more of a presence in most scenes. She really stands out in the final episodes and I wished it was like that most of the time considering, y’know, she’s also a main character. At times I was screaming in my head going “Let her help them!” but then they don’t let her help them, but one time she actually did step in and physically stopped a crazy paparazzi but she was pushed away. I applaud her bravery. Like she is always supporting them and watching them from the sidelines which is good but sometimes when conflict happens they would write her off and not let her help. One time they were looking for Tatsuhiro Nome who is stuck in the woods at night and Tsubasa wanted to come with and help search but the boys used the “Its dark and dangerous for girls at night” trope and I’m like *looks directly at the camera* are you serious? If you guys split up in twos in a search party then it wouldn’t be dangerous if she was accompanied by someone like what the fuck you fuckos.
There were a few characters, if not most of them, that weren’t given proper character development. A great example is Mikado Sekimura who was mainly played out as just an anime otaku and hinted once about his hidden angst, prolly something to do with parents, I dunno, it was never fully explained. Which makes me wonder if I missed an episode or something. Yuta Ashu seemed like he needed more character development too. Also wasn’t there another group in B-Project, “Killer Kings” or something. I guess they weren’t added in because they were revealed after production for the anime was underway or something? I’m not sure. Anyway I felt like Aizome was nicely developed from “a guy who flirts a lot to girls” to “a guy who is empty, was alone as a child and only wants the company of girls because it makes him feel alive”, like he has his flaws but he actually felt like a three dimensional character in that episode. He’s the only character I truly care about/have stakes in and I wish they explored more into his past, but either way it was nicely delivered in the episode. Quick and simple but still leaves an impact.
It had potential of having it stand out from the rest but it wasn’t in the right hands so now its your average shit idol anime. Of course, anime now has become a medium to advertise series/products so I shouldn’t have expected anything spectacular but that twist in the end made me wonder if this could’ve been better and unique. Maybe if they didn’t follow Utapri’s shitty formula and made it stand out as its own thing, get better directors/writers and a better animation studio and rethink the story with that twist in mind and deliver it so it would make a greater impact and maybe explore more in-depth of how Idols can be exploited in the idol industry & are sometimes just mere tools, it would’ve been a treat to B-Pro fans and make B-Pro more three dimensional and “not another idol thing”.
But that didn’t happen, so enjoy the fanservice we all came to see.