Balett Star 2nd
Fukuyama Jun as Tsubasa Takahara
Hoshi Souichirou as Katsuya Ichinose
Saiga Mitsuki as Kensaku Endoh
Toriumi Kousuke as Ryoutarou Kanda
Koyasu Takehito as Miyuki Tachibana
Sakurai Takahiro as Horinouchi Keisuke
It’s been ten years since the first Balett Star‘s debut and apparent stardom. Keisuke’s now at the head of Horinouchi productions and is taking care of two people: Takahara Tsubasa and Ichinose Katsuya who want to become idols. A lot of shit happpens leading to Keisuke having to take in three other stray wanna-be idols and becoming their mentor. Insanity ensues.
Horinouchi Keisuke (CV: Sakupyon)
The main returning character from the first series. I believe that this Balett Star takes place almost ten years after the first. Keisuke’s done some growing but he’s still as pitiful and resigned as before. He doesn’t have the braid anymore though -sobs- He now runs Horinouchi productions and is has also become the teacher for the 2nd Balett Star in place of Tonomura who has … err … gone somewhere. At the beginning of the 2nd series, he is writing a letter to Taku-chan, Eiji and Jirou. He is still working alongside Aoi who has become to the company what Kyouya is to the host club. Yeah, I always knew he and Aoi would continue their so-called friendship. Oh and he still goes Black Keisuke.
Endo Kensaku (CV: Saiga Mitsuki)
Anyone want to guess where the haircut came from? It looks like Keisuke doesn’t it? Well, Kensaku here is a die hard fan of Keisuke to the point of calling him Keisuke-sama and listening to his every word no matter what. He loves him so damn much that it’s creepy sometimes. From the old Balett Star, Gensaku ressembles Taku-chan the most but their personalities differ where Keisuke’s involved … at the point, Gensaku ressembles Eiji (bracon!). Gensaku will inevitably beat the crap outta of you if you so much as dare get near Keisuke. By the way, he is voiced by one of my favorite female seiyuus Saiga Mitsuki! And I like to add that Sakurai and Saiga are childhood friends so its really funny thinking that while knowing Kensaku’s head over heels for Sakurai’s chara Keisuke.
Takahara Tsubasa (CV: JunJun)
See the little wings on his back? He’s totally adorable isn’t he? He’s like Jirou but ten times more loli and ten times cuter. Try watching Geass then listening to this and you’ll be imagining Lulu in a loli-voice in no time. JunJun uses such a high-pitched cute voice that it might even be cuter than Miyata’s cute voice. Or perhaps I’m saying that ‘cuz I haven’t heard his voice in a while. Tsubasa is Aoi’s nephew and is aspiring to become and idol to save his family … but unlike Keisuke, Tsubasa is a hundred times more naive about the matter. Because of Aoi, Tsubasa knows a lot about shoujo manga (in particular Keisuke’s older sister’s Pyoppi’s manga). He and Gensaku don’t get along. Gensaku often calls him Chibi-tan. Then there’s Miyuki who calls him with “-chan” which Tsubasa dislikes.
Ichinose Katsuya (CV: Hoshi Souichirou)
Loves Tsubasa more than anything in the world and will do absolutely anything he says. Kat-chan is a really calm character. He is basically harsh and rude to anyone but Tsubasa to whom he acts like a mother/older brother. It somehow gets to the point where Kat-chan says “You can call me mom, Tsubasa” … creepy but hilarious. He’s attachment to Tsubasa is explained by Tsubasa being the “chosen loved of one of the mother alien ship” or something or other. That says a lot about Katsuya doesn’t it? Anyways, he’s an esper which has me wondering if he took lessons from your-face-is-too-close Itsuki. His powers are a destructive as Black Keisuke ‘cept Kat-chan can controle his and their easily stopped by Tsubasa saying “Yamete Kat-chan!” Did I mention how he calls everyone “trash” and unworthy?
Kanda Ryoutarou (CV: Toriumi Kousuke)
Like Keisuke, he’s the resigned one of the group. Unlike Keisuke back then though, he’s less naive and innocent. And like Jirou from the first Balett Star, he’s the most “normal” one of the group … or so I thought until volume three. It seems when Ryou-chan’s on the edge … his spirit returns to that of a little kid’s. That particular part of the CD was really something. Miyuki, who is his childhood friend, was the one to make him go back to normal. Mittan and Ryou-chan often argue but as proven by Ryou-chan’s child-self, he does effectively have a lot of affection for Miyuki. Being the normal one of the group, he and Keisuke get along really well much to Kensaku’s despair. When Aoi comes to teach the first class, they re-enact a scene (from a shojo manga of course) in which Ryou’s the prince and Keisuke the princess. I’m looking for a ToriumixSakurai as we speak.
Tachibana Miyuki (CV: Koyasu Takehito)
He’s the Aoi of the Balett Star 2nd minus the shojo manga obsession making him ten times more focused on being devious. In place of manga, Miyuki loves money and it is him who got Keisuke to sponsor them when they (Miyuki, Kensaku and Ryou) lost their idol class. He looks up to Aoi and calls him “shusho [master]”. Also, like Aoi, he’s the best tsukomi of the group mostly due to his “I don’t care” and “As long as its entertaining” personality. He’s the most good-looking and intelligent of the group again much like the Aoi. Need I say more? This guy’s like a perfect Aoi replica.
I can’t say how much I love this drama enough. It’s too funny and entertaining for words to explain. I’m two CDs from finishing this second series and it makes me so sad that I don’t want to force myself to listen to them. It’s comforts me knowing there’s a third series Balett Star though. I found it on Aarin and it made me so happy that I could cry.
The comedy in this is mostly tsukomi after tsukomi after tsukomi. You can’t expect much from a Drama CD after all since there are know visuals. But then you’ve got events going on like Ryou reverting to a little kid, Aoi forcing everyone to re-enact his favorite shojo manga scenes, talking bear attacks and other various insanities. Both the first and second series are ranked equally in my book. Both sets of characters are equally as funny and all of them different in their own way. At first it can be pretty difficult to distinguish the characters from each other but you grow to know them and it becomes quite easy. It’s even easier when you know the seiyuus though. I’ll admit, I had an easier time knowing who’s who in the second than in the first where everyone uses a crack-ish voice a lot. In those scenes it becomes difficult to figure out who’s who. Of course, it’s pretty hard not to know when Sakurai or SugiTomo was talking in the first series or when Junjun or Hoshi in the second series … Junjun and Hoshi especially because of Hoshi’s strange voice and Junjun’s pitch. But by the end of the first CD in both series, I knew all the character’s names and seiyuus by heart.
As I said in for the first CD, the voice Daisaku uses for Taku-chan was one of my favorite things of the series. Of course that’s only ranked 0.0000000000000000001% over the rest of the series. It helps that the artwork for this drama is really cute. I mean look at Tsubasa! He’s so totally adorable I want to take him home! Then there’s:
Taku-chan, Jirou and Kei-chan who are equally as cute!
That said. Balett Star contains everything I could possibly love about anything: a variety of distinguishable characters, my favorite seiyuus, cute artwork, entertaining crack-like comedy, a priceless premise and all the moe I could possibly ask for.
This has officially become my longest post since “Big Gun o Motsu Otoko” … what can I say? I absolutely love Balett Star. If you understand even just a bit of Japanese, really … you should try giving this Drama CD a listen. The Japanese is pretty easy to understand … and even most of the jokes are comprehensible.
Anyways, before this post reaches 1.5k words, I will stop ranting. If my banner didn’t make it obvious enough, this series is going to stay with me for a long time.