Version 5.4 ~ Haruhi gave rock and roll to you.

20 August 2015: Million Doll is a gripping idol civil war melodrama

Monona, Yurino, and Rina
Chaste local idols don't go around flashing naked armpits.

I ordinarily would have dropped Million Doll already, but instead I re-watched its first six episodes in preparation for the show's final stretch. This was only possible because each episode is four minutes long. Million Doll has entirely too much frightful 3D CGI for me to watch six full-length episodes, let alone re-watch that many. Even aside from the 3D CG, the show looks cheap as Hell. (Are we still allowed to claim a show looks "cheap" in a post-Shirobako world?)

Ryuu falls in love with an idol.

If you did the math, you figured out Million Doll doesn't actually have enough air time to really develop a plot, but the crux of it involves the upcoming clash between the UNDERGROUND IDOL, Mariko, and a trio of local idols calling themselves Itorio. Mariko has the impassioned support of an alleged "DD" (a daredemo daisuki, i.e., someone who likes anyone) named Ryuu. Ryuu attends idol events in person and enjoys engaging in wotagi activity with other fans at concerts. Itorio is backed by Sumire, a blogger whose tremendous Internet clout as a zaitaku (a fan who watches event streams and enjoys passionate idol activities from home) gives her the ability to shape an idol's future success.

That is a terrible way to set up triple monitors.

Both Mariko and Itorio have ambitions of going "major" but Mariko is hamstrung by a piece of shit producer who doesn't care about Protecting Her Dreams, and Itorio is just in over their heads because one of them excitedly called her shot too early. I suspect the final episodes with be about whether Ryuu's enthusiastic support can bring Mariko enough support to hit the big time.

Mariko > Itorio.

Standing in their way is the recalcitrant Sumire, who apparently views idol success as a zero-sum game. Will she sabotage Mariko online while aggressively promoting Itorio? Will Ryuu retaliate by hacking Sumire's Gibson? Or will they discover they have more in common than they realize (e.g., both were early fans of Hinami, an idol who hit the big time—despite only knowing one song—thanks to both of their efforts) and work together instead of mutually destroying both Itorio and Mariko? Only one way to find out!

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