Posted by psgels on 30 March 2009 with categories: Anime Reviews



Skip Beat has been an incredibly frustrating series for me; and not because it was incredibly bad: instead it’s been incredibly good. It’s a true breath of fresh air in the Shoujo genre, I became a fan of it instantly… and yet every single tiny flaw tends to stick out like a needle here. Ack.

While from the outside this series doesn’t look anything special: shoujo series about a girl who enters the idol business have been done before, but never in the way that this series has done. By a lack of a better description: this show has BALLS. The amount of guts it has continues to surprise, and to be honest, I can’t think of any other shoujo series that has a better sense of comedic timing than this series has. It’s amazing how careful and yet how witty this show is when delivering the jokes. It knows exactly how to deliver its jokes. The show is definitely on its best when two people with incredibly clashing personality are in bitch-fights against each other. It’s guaranteed hilarity!

And that’s the thing: if there’s any series that deserves to progress flawlessly, then it’s this one, but it’s such a bloody shame that the drama-bit of this series is shaky. While better than your average romantic comedy, the drama especially in the middle suffers from being WAY TOO RIDICULOUSLY CHEESY for its own good. The incredibly soppy drama unfortunately takes itself seriously, and doesn’t seem to realize that it’s incredibly formulaic.

The problem with this series is its trademark bitch-fights: while hilarious to watch, it becomes horribly dull when characters aren’t either trying to scratch each other’s eyes out or teasing the hell out of each other. The biggest offenders are the two middle arcs, about the chief’s daughter and the commercial filming. In such a hilarious series, these arcs break the flow terribly and are a pain to get through.

The romance also starts out incredibly shaky. Kyoko, the female lead, doesn’t just happen to run into one of the most respected actors in the business, she also grew up with the friggin guy when she was just a child. Especially the latter is jarring, since it wasn’t needed (or used, for that matter) at all in order to spark up the romance between him and the lead female.

THANKFULLY, though, this series does pick itself up as it goes along, resulting into a bunch of episodes of awesomeness in the final third, and it closes off with a strong arc. Unfortunately, it then proceeds to end the series with one helluva cliff-hanger. Kyoko herself is a really diverse character that has a huge amount of different sides to her character. Unfortunately, some of these sides feel forced. And that’s the bloody thing with this show: for every great point it seems to have one flaw or so to bring it down.

Nevertheless, I recommend this show for those looking for a great shoujo-series. Great shoujo-series like this one are very rare, especially since most shows of the genre feel like a simple rehash of an existing formula without much of an own identity. Skip Beat, while too soppy for its own good at time is a genuinely funny series, and we can only hope that a second season will be made some day.

Storytelling: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 8/10

13 Responses

  1. senerikfred says:

    I’m more than ten episodes behind on this due to waiting it out for the last of Frostii(half being the former ‘Ureshii’)’s releases, but damn, that means I’ve already finished one and a half of the arcs that are on the show’s weaker side, but nothing like bad.

    And yeah, I really despise the ‘childhood friend’ gimmick in anime that’s supposed to be romantic-if I had balls(external, anyway-ovary power FTW, especially in Skip Beat itself), the sudden introduction of the ‘our romantic interests were already special to one another as children’ twist would have been like getting kicked in them. Glad to hear it won’t be used for their development too much.

  2. totoum says:

    Not sure you should wait for frostii,most shows after the merger were dropped and this is what they had to say as of january 22nd

    “There are a couple of episodes of Skip Beat in the works, but the team responsible for it have decided to drop it as soon as those are out, due to Crunchyroll simulcasting the series. Whether these remaining episodes will be labelled as [yoroshiku] only or [yoroshiku-frostii] hasn’t particularly been discussed, but then, it doesn’t really make a difference as the team is the same one that started the joint. Hopefully, we’ll be able to get the episodes still being worked on to you as soon as possible.”

  3. senerikfred says:

    Thanks for trying to help, totoum, but I already knew they were dropping it once they got ep 10 out-I’ve already watched the next three episodes from Crustyroll, and finished downloading the rest of the series from the same group. I just wanted to watch as much of Skip Beat as I could from the highest quality sub group I know.

  4. pgal says:

    I am surprised and happy that you watched the show. I have read both the manga and watched the anime. The manga is amazing, but the anime is quite good, especially since it knows how to make the show hilarious and use chibi characters without over doing it.

    My only complaint was that the ending of the show was too open. The Dark Moon arc hasn’t ended especially since Ren hasn’t understood Katsuki yet. Many manga readers are mad since the fun part of the arc which leads up to the solution to Ren’s problem has been ignored.

    The role of Ren and Kyoko’s childhood meeting doesn’t play such a large role. Kyoko doesn’t know that Ren and Corn as the same persons. The only person this will effect is Ren.

    Hopefully there is another season. The arcs after this are very good.

  5. death13a says:

    The solution to Ren’s problem has not being ignored as anime stopped just before it. I wonder will Moko’s part be DVD only as that boy was shown at the end.

  6. midenz says:

    oh dang can beleive u were wathcing this ! XDD i never thot u would, very suprising, like someone said earlier, anyways i quite like the chief daughter’s arc, was pretty awesome for me xDD and the bitchfights are so hilarious and so fun to watch, great anime like u said :) though the end has a major cliffhanger >.

  7. boku youna says:

    I think that what makes Skip Beat! addictive in the first place was the unique shounen nature it possessed despite this being a shoujo series. Kyouko is meant to be a neat, all-conquering main protagonist, which she definitely turned out to be.

    I thought the series, therefore, fared best when it focused on the arcs which saw her performing excellently in her acting, beating her rivals, and surprising all – i.e. the Ruriko arc (when she first started acting), the Maria arc (when she surprised everyone with her changing of lines), the Dark Moon arc (when she portrayed Mio well) etc.

    The shoujo elements, like the hints of a love blossoming between her and Ren, and the background feud with Shoutaro, are inevitably weak.

  8. headachebaby says:

    Skip Beat! was an awesome anime for me…heck! I went back and rewatched episodes after episodes while waiting for the new ones to be out on Sundays. The ending is a HUGE cliffhanger and AAHH!!! there must be a second season! There are animes that are popping out second and third seasons when they should’ve die already. It’ll be so sad if there isn’t a second season. Kyoko is my favorite female character. Favorite male charcter is Ippo from “Hajime no Ippo.”

  9. Machi says:

    Wait till you meet Kyoko’s new character “Natsu” now theres a woman with even more BALLS (as you put it) XD. Kyoko’s roles is what makes her stand out for me, mainly that she gets villain roles instead of sweet ones (which does add to the comedy).

  10. Miss V says:

    Ugh, I hope they have another season….the Skip Beat! Manga has just gotten to it’s best parts! And finally the romance is moving forward….but I’m afraid they’re edging on the device where the audience and nearly every other person on the show know who loves who, but THEY don’t know it. The only saving grace is that each of them know their own feelings…which is nice.

    What endlessly frustrates me about this anime, however, is that it got an anime before Tokyo Crazy Paradise!

    Now THAT is a comedy shoujo that desperately needed a series. Desperately.
    Would have made for some fantastic fight scenes too.

    Same as a previous commenter said too…they barely focus at all on the childhood thing. It’s almost like the manga-ka started that and decided it was cliche. She’s done it before, I swear. Some plot points just turn out to generic and she twists them and makes them go away or change into something spectacular.

    Oh, and the anime doesn’t focus on the method of acting as well as the manga does. It’s really a soul-searching process and all related to how Kyoko has this…realness…that gives her true talent. Ren spends a good amount of time struggling to find that himself.

    Praying for a second season though. I want to see Natsu be so incredibly scary. ; . ;

  11. headachebaby says:

    LOVE Skip Beat! This is a great example of a shoujo series. It’s definitely not boring. Aaahh…there has be to be a second season out. What are the creators thinking to leave Skip Beat! fans hanging.

    I love romance but most shoujo series are a pain in the butt because the characters are annoying. It takes like forever to develop the characters and the characters are unrealistic. They can’t express their feelings and it just drags on…again, pain in the butt. However, Skip Beat! is done cleverly and it’s not annoying. I love every moment of Kyoko and Ren together. I give this series 97/100.

    I’m impatiently waiting for a second season and it has to be out or my world of Skip Beat! is shattered. ^_^

  12. Bobapearl says:

    I’m dying for another season of skip beat! the first season was great in my opinion, lots of laughs and good storyline…hopefully it’ll come out in october 2009!

  13. lovelymix says:

    I love this anime I also read the manga its perfect, first of the series I hated Sho so much I wished for him die! but in the latest chapters I really like his character because its not just Kiouko who has developed but also Sho both has changed their personalities, I don’t hate or like Ren because I feel as he have power over Kiouko and they are not equal for being a couple she always apologizing him and feeling weak against him she looks to him as an idol. I feel like he is like a teacher for her or and old friend even if I feel sorry for him because its the first time that he knows love but that just my opinion

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  • Bam
    (Sunday, Sep 21. 2014 06:09 PM)
    *our
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Sep 21. 2014 06:08 PM)
    The single main issue I have with the newer series is the style. I absolutely dug the classic, more realistic character designs, environment and movement. They also tended to be more dark and edgy. Now they whiplash back and forth between camp and violence which generally undermines both. Kids can have all these moe shows, but can we get are characters with regular-sized heads back as well?
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Sep 21. 2014 06:03 PM)
    Regarding writing the anime industry has always been a mixed bag, so that depends more on the production than the era (although they tend to be mostly bad or inconsistent).
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Sep 21. 2014 06:00 PM)
    @Ninja: No they were quite terrible, but at least they had the decency of making them concise and so gratuitous that it became pretty fun to watch. One main gripe back then was that given 2-3 disjointed OVA episodes the shows didn’t really get anywhere, nowadays you watch two full seasons to realize that a lot of these new shows also don’t go anywhere.
  • ninjarealist
    (Sunday, Sep 21. 2014 05:54 PM)
    @Bam Sure, I agree with you, but that’s a taste judgement. In terms of quality I think it’s unfair to suggest that something like Violence Jack or Mad Bull 34 is quality writing. The writing in a lot of old anime is extremely dated and just not that great.
  • ninjarealist
    (Sunday, Sep 21. 2014 05:51 PM)
    @Emma lol, sorry. I wasn’t trying to cut off your point. I thought you were done talking about it.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Sep 21. 2014 05:49 PM)
    I’ll take anime like Violence Jack or Genocyber over SAOII anyday.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Sep 21. 2014 05:47 PM)
    @Realist: Got there first before I said it =< =D
  • ninjarealist
    (Sunday, Sep 21. 2014 05:34 PM)
    @Emma Yeah, people who say that anime has gone down the toilet have just not watched very much old anime. A lot of the stuff that came out during the “classic” anime era was just terrible.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Sep 21. 2014 05:15 PM)
    Urotsukidōji always wins.

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