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I would like to give credit where credit is due. Videos are from YouTube and other sources such as NicoNico while Oricon rankings and other information are translated from the Japanese Wikipedia unless noted.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Shiori Muto, Yū Asakawa, Sumire Uesaka, Chiwa Saito, Mutsumi Tamura and Ayumu Murase -- Chiisana Hoshi (ちいさな星)


Finally, I got to watch "X-Men: Apocalypse" last night some 3 weeks after its premiere (I think you folks in Japan will have to wait another couple of months before it hits your shores). Considering the mediocre reviews, the lack of buzz behind the movie, and my talk with JTM last weekend, my expectations had been brought lower than The Blob's centre of gravity, so I was actually quite happy with the finished product. Nope, it's not quite up there with Marvel's big superhero grand prize fight "Civil War" but it's also no "X-Men: The Last Stand" either. And once again, Evan Peters' Quicksilver stole the show again. I am actually hoping that that scene gets onto YouTube fairly soon.


Speaking of superhero movies, I have got quite the cast listing up there in the title line this time, don't I? Well, following up on my article for Pay money To my Pain's "Respect for the deadman", the opening theme for "Nobunagun"(ノブナガン), here is the ending theme for that same 2014 anime. I'm now approaching the end of that entertaining show about mutants of another kind although it seems as if there won't be any large franchise coming out of this manga adaptation, unfortunately.


Unlike the thrashy rock of "Respect for the deadman", the ending theme of "Chiisana Hoshi" (A Little Star) is all cute technopop starring a large chunk of the cast from "Nobunagun". And the song is divided into two versions with "Chiisana Hoshi ver.α" first hitting the ending credits with seiyuu Shiori Muto(武藤志織)as the main character Sio Ogura, Yū Asakawa(浅川悠)as French kiss-crazy Isaac Newton and Sumire Uesaka(上坂すみれ)as moe (and now perhaps cyclopean) Galileo behind the mike.


Then, there is "Chiisana Hoshi ver.β" with Muto again but this time, she's joined by Chiwa Saito(斉藤千和)as good-but-not-nice Geronimo, Mutsumi Tamura(田村睦心)as just-as-good-but-just-as-not-nice Cyx and Ayumu Murase(村瀬歩)as fellow hero and frequent doormat Gaudi. This was the version that finally got my ear when it was first introduced at the end of episode 6. For some reason, it sounds fuller and so the Beta version is the one I actually prefer.


With lyrics by Rie Otsuka(大塚利恵)and music by Kenichi Maeyamada(前山田健一), "Chiisana Hoshi" shares something with the opener of "Respect for the deadman" in that it has unexpectedly got my ear although I wouldn't say it has leveled up to an earworm. But there is a lot about "Nobunagun" that was unexpected in a happy way.

In any case, I'm looking forward to "Suicide Squad" and "Doctor Strange".


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