Why?! #10: Idolmaster Xenoglossia

I fell on this grenade so that you don't have to, anime fans.

I fell on this grenade so that you don’t have to, anime fans.

Sometimes I like to look at fan art from anime because it tends to give me a good idea of what shows are captivating people’s feelings and inspiring them to produce art. The more obviously well done fan art suggests to me that the show meant so much to the person that they took the time to do a picture that is visually stunning. Most people cannot be bothered doing such art for shows that are terrible, with the possible exception of Naruto (though you can argue that all of the fan art for that show is terrible anyway. I take it back), because there’s little point in making something that no one will even bother looking up. Using this method, I have found dozens of shows I otherwise would never have known about and have thus vastly enriched my mind with stories the likes of which I’ve never seen. I was actually batting a thousand (100%, for the non-baseball initiated in the class) up until I came across Idolmaster Xenoglossia.

This character is always dressed up like different things because she's a radio personality. No horseshit.

This character is always dressed up like different things because she’s a radio personality. No horseshit.

To be fair, the fan art I saw was for a game called Idolmaster that had absolutely nothing to do with Idolmaster Xenoglossia. I assumed no two groups would seize on the name Idolmaster, which was my ultimate mistake. Before I tell you about the show, I’d like to clarify something. You will undoubtedly ask yourself, “Why did he watch the whole thing?”, at some point whilst reading this blog. It’s a fair question. I am mildly obsessive/compulsive when it comes to stories. I’d finish a book in high school and a person from my class would lend me another to finish during reading break and I would have to borrow that book until the next day when I could return it, completed. I don’t care who wrote it or how bad it was. I will always see a story through to the end because even the worst story will usually have one piece of gold to it. One thing you’d never thought of before that changes your perspective of the world forever. I don’t mind sifting through hours of garbage to find that gold. At least it shines so brightly against such a drab background that it’s easy to spot.

Not the case for Idolmaster Xenoglossia. I’m still at a loss for how to explain this show. I would say “how to explain this show without spoilers” but to be fair, the only way I could spoil this show for you would be by allowing you to watch it without any warning about what you’re getting yourself into. I honestly wish someone had spoiled it for me. I would rather have cooked my face and eaten it than watched this show. At least in hindsight. I think I have it. Here we go: Did you ever watch Gundam Wing and wish that the characters were not likable in any way? That they were just a bunch of moody, petulant whiners? More so, did you ever wish that the characters in Gundam Wing fell in love with their mobile suits? I don’t mean the way some guys love their cars. I mean in a confused, sexual, what-the-fuck-are-we-even-talking-about way? Do you get excited at the idea of a frontal lobotomy? If the answer to these questions is “yes” then have I got a show for you.

I'm glad I wasn't the only one who felt this way.

I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who felt this way.

You see, the world is under the constant threat of meteorites smashing it into pieces and people have to get into space to smash those meteorites to dust before they collapse the planet. The only way to accomplish this feat is to hook up mech bodies to one of five electronic orbs which are living things, which is never really explained. The Idols, as they’re called, are these weird beings that were discovered through some means I honestly can’t be bothered looking up. People didn’t make them, anyway, which is probably good because you’d have some serious questions about people who would design a robot that falls in love with teenaged girls. Yes, I wasn’t making that shit up. The suits won’t even fly for the girls who do things that hurt their feelings. The idols are basically gigantic emo losers from space and they’re piloted by a bunch of brainless, tactless airheads who spend most of their time obsessing over their relationship with a suit instead of the fact that the world looks very likely to be over very shortly.

It doesn’t take a lot for me to identify with a character. Give me a little of the outsider and I’m already there. Give me some Picked On and I’m there. Give me anything but characters whose faces I want to punch until my fists bleed, really. That’s not what they give you, though. I think the premise of the show is that if the world is ever in dire straights and the only hope we have is adolescent girls then we’re all in some serious shit. It’s really hard to say, though. Have you ever watched a show and realized halfway through that not only do you not want the main characters to win, you don’t even want them to survive? Any of the characters? By halfway through Idolmaster Xenoglossia I was actively rooting for the meteorites.

She actually calls that thing "my boyfriend" in the show. This is them on a date. I wish, more than anything, that I was joking about all this.

She actually calls that thing “my boyfriend” in the show. This is them on a date. I wish, more than anything, that I was joking about all this.

The plot twists in the show are just twists for the sake of twisting. There’s no actual explanation as to why the twist happens, you’re just supposed to accept that people are stupid and make decisions for stupid reasons mostly pertaining to their feelings instead of facts. The entire group who maintain and pilot the suits are female, but don’t go thinking this is some kind of step forward for women. All are women except the old man who runs the place, I mean. They’re not portrayed as competent and capable, rather as jealous and scheming and too emotional. Who does it serve to make an all female cast and then make them all idiotic? Don’t go thinking that when they grow up they get smarter. There are also grown women in the show who are still in love with their suits, even though they’ve been passed up for younger babes.

In fact, not a single decision in the show is something you would think was logical or the right thing to do. It’s an adventure in watching people deal with the consequences of their stupid mistakes. The ending resolves next to nothing and, having seen it, you have to wonder what the hell the purpose of the show was, as the horny mechs that were supposedly so important are gone and everything is just dandy. Whoever made this show should not only be ashamed, they should be banned from producing anything at all for the rest of their life. The mechs also shoot video of the girls when they’re in bathing suits, because even though it’s just an orb with no obvious sex organs, it wants to save that little sexy bit for later. What are we supposed to feel when we watch this? The idea of my computer using my cam to take pictures of me when I get changed isn’t cute or interesting; that’s some of the scariest shit I’ve ever heard of. Stay away!!!! If you’ll excuse me, I have to shower three times now just because I thought about that show in order to write this blog.

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