It’s kind of crazy when you really think about it; who would have ever thought it would be the idol anime genre that would connect hundreds of anime fans globally? From series such as Love Live! to THE iDOLM@STER, and everything in-between, the genre is en route for global success. Love Live! Sunshine!! recognizes this global phenomenon, and has created a perfect exemplifier of just how crazy this all is. Donning their characters in a myriad of clothes from around the globe, each character represents a major country from around the globe.
Love Live! is an especially unique property in that a huge emphasis is placed on bringing the experience to those fans outside Japan. Being an idol music franchise, live performances are a huge part of the genre’s massive success and even money-making ability. Live concerts featuring both μ’s and Aqours have been streamed in movie theaters worldwide, allowing fans to take part in the festivities with fellow devotees in it to simply jam it massive-scale musical events. For reference, μ’s final concert was held in Tokyo Dome, a venue with a capacity of 55,000 people. However, the final estimated audience for that event was 250,000, with fans tuning in from across China, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Australia.
In a totally unprecedented phenomenon, the anime idol craze would seem to be unstoppable globally. Which brings me to my next point; why is it that the anime idol genre is finding so much international success, whilst the actual idol industry struggles to break through? There’s a large allure to the 2D counterpart and a much easier to access nature to it, but it’s always dawned as interesting to me that the genres original basis is still pushed to the back. Regardless, there are some clear power moves being pulled within the anime industry, and they’re paying off big time. You can check out the international representations below:
Chika Takami, sporting a short-styled cheongasm for Taiwan // Riko Sakurauchi looking elegant in a dirndl for Germany // Kanan Matuura is totally geared-up for an Outback expedition in Australia // Hanamaru Kunikada wrapped in traditional chut thai for Thailand
Mari Ohara just simply cannot be any more American // Ruby Kurosawa has donned a hanbok for Korea // Dia Kurosawa is looking quite striking in her kebaya, representing Singapore // You Watanabe slays in a high-slit style cheongasm for China // Yoshiko Tsushima in some traditional maid’s garb for the United Kingdom