The Moppets Take Manhattan

OK, confession time: the only reason I’m writing this is because the post title stuck in my head about ten minutes into watching Love Live! The School Idol Movie, and until I put it down on the page it wasn’t going to let me forget it.

But, that’s done.  Moving on.

I’ve been slowly working my way through the Love Live! series, and just got around to the movie tonight.  I didn’t quite know what to expect going in, because my history with movies that are spin-offs of anime series has taught me that they fall in to one of three categories.  You have the “one more adventure!” kind of movie, like the Dirty Pair or Strike Witches movies, you have the “retell the plot of the TV show in 120 minutes” movies, like the Macross Frontier movies, and you have the “seriously, we were just on really heavy drugs” movies, like the Utena movie.

Wait, I’m leaving out the “OK, this movie is a sequel to the TV series, but it’s not really a DIRECT sequel, you need to have played this game / read this manga / watched these OVAs that never got translated, so good luck!” movies.  Those are fortunately pretty rare, but I am STILL bitter about the Martian Successor Nadesico movie.

Anyway, since I know you’re just on the edge of your seat with suspense, the Love Live! movie is fortunately squarely in the “one more adventure!” category, and picks up roughly 2 seconds after the end of the TV show.  Really, it’s enough of a continuation that it may as well just be an extremely long 27th episode, so if you’ve watched the preceding 26 and want to spend another hundred minutes with your favorite waifu and her eight best friends, there’s no reason not to watch it.

It does have a little different tone from the series, in that it’s much more of a musical than a show about producing shows.  Characters randomly burst into song and have little dance numbers right in the middle of the plot, which is a bit surreal to watch considering how grounded most of the TV series was.  They had to fill out the soundtrack album, is my theory.

There’s also a plot thread involving Honoka waffling about the future of the group and being advised by a street performer who may or may not actually be there.  I spent more time than I’d like to admit trying to decide whether she was just a figment of Honoka’s imagination, and I’m still working on it.

Oh, and μ’s goes to New York, ostensibly to perform for an American news program but really just to show us that Kotori can and will eat an entire cheesecake in one sitting.  This actually didn’t strike me as too odd – I’ve never personally been to New York, myself, but I am confident that if you walk into a restaurant and just order a cheesecake and a fork they will probably put it on a plate for you without blinking.

Anyway, it felt like a good send-off for the original nine idols and sets me up to start on Love Live! Sunshine!!, which I swear to God has those extra exclamation marks right in the title and I am not making them up.  I’m looking forward to it.


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