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Skip Beat!

Don't lie, you knew this was coming!

Story

Mogami Kyoko is betrayed by her childhood friend, Fuwa Sho, and aspires to become one of the best entertainers in Japan - or at least, that's what it looks like at first. After Sho's betrayal, Kyoko closes off her heart and vows to never love again - seeing it as a useless emotion that can only lead to pain. The true story is about Kyoko realizing you need love to be able to win over the hearts of those you wish to entertain.

Art

The animation is somewhat lacking. Everything in terms of actual drawing - backgrounds, characters - is actually pretty good. I'm not exactly an artist, though, so I'm not the best person to ask about the art aspects of an anime.

Sound

Music - The two OP tracks by the generous are very catchy. It was quite surprising to find such good opening tracks - mostly because, for most anime, I prefer the ending tracks. For this anime, though, the ED tracks weren't as good as what I was expecting. Considering the fact that the OP tracks were amazing, the ED tracks were quite disappointing. "Namida" by 2BACKKA was catchy, and the lyrics sort of fit the episodes that it was used for - but I feel like the actual BGM for the song wasn't up to par. "Eien" by Yusaku Kiyama is a different story. It surpasses "Namida" by far, musically and vocally. This track was introduced around the time Ren realized his feelings for Kyoko, so it definitely fit in.

Voice - It's impossible for me to judge them based on skill, so I'll have to judge based on ability to convey emotion. Mamoru Miyano sounds just as arrogant as I imagine Shoutaro sounding in my head. Marina Inoue does a great job with Kyoko's voice-over. I also have to give props to Katsuyuki Konishi, though. He does a fantastic job with Ren. He did a great job with conveying Ren's jealousy towards Sho in regards to their relationships with Kyoko. Starting from when Kyoko decides to act for herself, Konishi is able to convey Ren's true feelings towards her. It becomes obvious to us that he loves her, even though the idea completely baffles Kyoko - but isn't that what they were going for? I could go into more detail with the other characters, but I thought it would be wise to focus on the three main ones.

Character

The characters are very well-developed, but I will, again, focus on the three main ones.

Mogami Kyoko isn't your typical shoujo heroine. She's not waiting around for her Prince Charming because, in her mind, she already found him - and he cruelly betrayed her. Due to this, she becomes the opposite of a typical heroine and vows to never love again. Rather than search for Prince Charming, she avoids him at all costs until she can surpass him. She's rather obsessed with getting her revenge on former "lover" Fuwa Sho. However, when she gets her first "taste" of being an actress on the set of Ring Doh, she starts to find herself. She uses acting to create the "real" Mogami Kyoko.

Fuwa Sho, born Fuwa Shoutaro, is Kyoko's childhood friend who is a popular visual kei artist. He becomes Kyoko's enemy when he confides to his manager that he only ever saw her as a maid. When the two meet up again at a PV shoot, it's quite obvious that he might have some deeper feelings for her - but his arrogance and pride prevents him from recognizing it, which makes one wonder if Kyoko will ever truly escape from being his "maid".

Tsuruga Ren is Fuwa Sho's apparent rival, although the rivalry is rather one-sided. Tsuruga doesn't even seem to acknowledge Fuwa's declaration of rivalry. Since the two are involved in completely different fields of entertainment, it's not surprising that he doesn't see Fuwa as a rival until he realizes what he really feels for Kyoko. Speaking of Kyoko, Ren hates her at first until he realizes that she hasn't changed all that much from the little girl he met when he was a kid.

The characters are fantastic. Usually, one would root for the childhood friend - but they seem to have made that close to impossible with the anime. The manga is a bit different, but we aren't talking about the manga, here.

I'll be honest - Kyoko pretty much carries the anime. However, towards the end - you can see more aspects of the other characters come into play.

Enjoyment

I wasn't expecting to enjoy this anime as much as I did. I usually can't stand watching any type of shoujo anime, but this one was very different and extremely entertaining.

Overall

9/10 - This is great for people who love stereotypical shoujo anime, and even those who try to avoid shoujo. The romance is more indirect. Although the revenge plot is a bit over-used, the way that it's done is very different from others. I will say that I'm a bit disappointed with how they cut into the middle of the Dark Moon arc (was that necessary?) which prevented development of several characters. It's hard for people to sympathize with any other character besides Kyoko - so people who rate it highly, like myself, usually did some research of the series beforehand.