Erika’s Enthusiast Expo: Revue Starlight

   Google Play launched the smartphone game “Shōjo Kageki Revue Starlight -Re LIVE-” on Oct. 22, 2018 with the iOS version following release soon after on Oct. 28.

   It was developed by Ateam and Bushiroad (publisher for the “Love Live!” and “BanG Dream! Girls Band Party” apps as well). The game itself includes the nine main characters that star in the anime, along with 15 new members of the cast and new stories.

   “Shōjo Kageki Revue Starlight” (translated as Girls’ Opera Revue Starlight) was created back in 2017 and mostly consists of a musical that was performed from Sept. 22 – 24, 2017 at the AiiA 2.5 Theater Tokyo. Along with that, a 12 episode anime series by Kinema Citrus aired from July 12 – Sept. 27, 2018.

   Tomohiro Furukawa directs the anime with Tatsuto Higuchi who works on series composition and Hiroyuki Saita who works on the character design front. The opening and ending themes are “Hoshi no Dialogue” (Star Dialogue) and “Fly Me to the Star” respectively, both of which are sung by Starlight 99-gumi, the voice actress’ of the show.

   Along with that, all the songs performed throughout the episodes in each revue are also done by Starlight 99-gumi.

   The series also has two ongoing manga adaptations, both of which began their serialization on Jan. 6, 2018. A third manga adaptation called “Shōjo Kageki Revue Starlight Overture” ran from Jan. 30 – Oct. 30, 2018. The other two “Butai Revue Starlight: Show Must Go On” and “Yonkoma Starlight” both run in the Monthly Bushiroad magazine.

   The story revolves around the 99th Graduating Class at Seisho Music Academy’s road to putting on their annual production of the theatrical play Starlight, marking the second time they have performed it out of three.

   In the midst of it all, a stage known as ‘Revue Starlight’ appears as an underground audition stage. The auditions held there are run by a talking giraffe that pits the nine main girls against one another in battle in order to obtain the title of Top Star, which would allow the winner to shine on any stage that she desires.

   Karen Aijō, the series’ protagonist, comes across the auditions on accident after her childhood friend Hikari Kagura enrolls in the Academy and participates. Remembering the promise she made with Hikari long ago where they promised to be stars and act as the main roles in ‘Starlight,’ Karen joins the auditions to obtain her dream.

   The rules for the revue are simple: a girl takes up her weapon (ranging from a dagger to swords to even a halberd) and must cut off the cape of their opponent to win the audition for that day.

   A rankings board is used to keep track of the top participants and, in the case of there not being a clear cut winner during the auditions, duets will take place within the top four before the winning pair must turn on each other and fight.

   Each revue also has a theme to it along with each girl having a specific theme as well. There are revues for longing, pride, jealousy, promises, bonds, and isolation. All regard the focus girl’s feelings during the episode and her relationship with her opponent in order to create a fitting stage for both to fairly engage on.

   Among the fantastical elements of the stage itself, the Top Star also can receive anything they wish in terms of their fated stage. Nothing is restrained to proper reality when a Stage Girl ascends to that tier, as the series provides examples ranging from a new world for the winner or even the chance to go back in time.

   “Shōjo Kageki Revue Starlight” is a series with symbolism ingrained deep in its messages and characters. Running at only 12 episodes, it is easy to get through while also keeping a stable plot and constant forward motion.

Erika Brandenburg
Arts and Entertainment Editor

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