I think the plan is I will do this on Jtor, but since I’m still working on the intro post let me jot down some notes here in the form of a blog post.
Couple items worth noting: 2ch tries to map the Musani staff to real life people, and for the most part it works. Then there’s this comment from another fellow seiyuu aficionado: “Hahahahahahaha damn if only the seiyuu were THAT pretty hahahha.”
What’s amusing is that while there’s this direct mapping between characters and real life individuals, when we go into “prpr mode” (for the lack of a better term) I think our way to judge stuff changes. In a nutshell, the anime/manga character style is a form of caricature. As a rule it’s not life-like in details. Shirobako applies already a pretty life-like approach to the character designs (in a way that is reminiscent of a lot of the prior PA Works shows) but I mean, just take a look.
Fellow koebutas can agree, I think, that Kayano has that puppy-looking eyes going, and for me they’ve really captured her visage by doing the eyes/bang layout right. Nakahara Mai, on the other hand, is a lot more difficult to capture using the anime/manga style because her distinguishing facial features are more the way her nose and facial bone structure are, giving her that sharp look. It’s hard to portray those things when most anime characters don’t even have a pronounced nose to speak of. On top of that, when you have kind of a late-night moe anime thing going on, Kayanon’s puffy cheeks are easy to reproduce relative to the more mature looks you get from Nakahara and Itou. That said, I think Itou Shizuka’s forehead/hair go a long way to represent her character in the anime, so that one was easy to pick out just at a glance, too.
I wonder if they took that into consideration when selecting the seiyuu they would mimic. I suppose there was a casting call for these three girls who had to voice as themselves and then voicing a character within the anime. If you think CV: Casting Voice is meta, Shirobako is one layer more!
As for the actual comment about pretty, let’s just say even accounting for the “3DPD factor” there are pretty anime characters and not-as-pretty anime characters. I think even in Shirobako you have that range of visual beauty–just look at our 5 protagonists. So no comment here about if not-Kayanon or not-Nakahara is prettier than their real life counterpart (uuuuh).
By the way, what Kayanon demonstrated in episode 2 was a page out of seiyuu school. If you listen to seiyuu radios it can be a treat. Like what Hayami Saori demonstrated at her Otakon panel, for example…
As for the episode proper, I loooove the way how the plan comes together and the way anime uses anime-only powers to demonstrate what it is really meant when Arupin has arrived. I loooove the way how they make Maruyama a bit like the patron saint of struggling TV anime productions. The way they add him during that meeting scene is both lovingly done and funny in the sense that they make clear he doesn’t really contribute in a tangible way. Can we have a Shirobako-type anime but instead produces a movie that takes 7 years to release? LOL.
PS. Onee-chan is Nu. But she doesn’t get an anime character cameo! WTB anime Nunu please (fat chance, I know).
PPS. Speaking of the ED animation (as last week’s ED is actually the OP animation), it’s done by the core team, directed by Mizushima.