I loved season one of Crane Game Girls. There, I said it. It was weird, it was silly, it was…a lot of fun. I’ve talked about Crane Game Girls here and at Beneath the Tangles. It really was weird. Here’s my previous summary of the series:
It’s an anime series about three girls who think they’re going to become pop idols. How? Well, currently by working at an arcade. Also, in their free time they’re practicing crane game skills. When they succeed, they are actually…saving the world from asteroids which are on track to destroy the entire world. Somehow, their actions winning at these crane games are saving the world, powering massive equipment which knocks the asteroids off-course and keeps the world safe.
Yup. It was colorfully animated, had silly characters, and was all in all enjoyable. While one of the main characters was “busty” this was not a series focused on fan-service. There were no panty shots. There was no focus on character’s breasts with extreme closeups. Honestly, it was mostly a focus on crane games and the goofiness of the entire plot.
Two episodes into Crane Game Girls Galaxy and things are already different. The second season of the short-form series introduces us to a new team of idols – Dark Cherry.
Dark Cherry, much like the Crane Game Girls, are a three girl Idol team who sing and perform (as the Crane Game Girls have shifted from arcade game players to cultural icons/idols). In the first episode, we are regaled with boob jokes, a number of direct zoomed in boob shots, and more sexualization of the teen Idol characters than the original series. While it still had some of the same silly gags, it lost a lot of the charm of season one already to me. Instead of it being about girls unknowingly saving the world through the weird and mundane act of playing crane games, it’s now become a show about idols competing to save the world by outperforming the others. It’s now about singing, dancing, performing, and focusing more on the looks. It’s not the same show anymore despite having the same cast of characters and same animation style.
Say what you will, but I’m not a fan of anime “fan-service.” I get that some shows will have characters who are more scantily clad, but to make it the main focus is not going to interest me. To make focus on characters’ sexualized features is not going to interest me. To make a bunch of jokes about big boobs and how they will make you a more popular idol is not going to interest me.
I’ve watched two episodes so far because I really enjoyed the original series. We’ll see if I keep up with Crane Game Girls Galaxy…