Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Yes, My Lord~ That Butler, Friendship || その執事、友好

Let's talk about this musical, shall we. This is going to be a relatively long post since there are quite a few things I really want to touch on with this production. In the very beginning, Tanaka opens the house with the play etiquette: turn off phones, be courteous to your neighbors, enjoy the show, such on and so forth. But as he starts to repeat himself (oh, Tanaka), Aberline runs out and gives more detail onto the show, its plot line, and adds a little comedy.  

The actor plays an older, more eccentric version of Aberline, which I think is better for this adaptation. It'd be a pity to see the young investigator cut down so early in the play. The plot line for this play occurs just after the Noah's Arc incident. There's a blank panel within the manga in which the entirety of this play occurs. Better believe it. This is some grade A plot squeezing they're doing.

As far as the characters are concerned, Aberline is the only canon character that appears out of his age, and for Ciel and the two other characters (Kai and Yuuki), their actors are a bit older than their characters. Shougo Sakamoto (JN: 阪本 奨悟) plays the young Phantomhive, but due to his appearances, Ciel looks more like a 16/17 year old boy. Yuuki (played by Aoyagi Ruito/青柳塁斗) and Kai (played by Daichi Oshino), who I assume are supposed to be Ciel's age if not a little older, look more like they're in their 20s purely because of their actors. And I suppose Sebastian, played Yuya Matsushita (JN: 松下優也) looks more like a baby faced 19-22 year old. Though with Sebastian, I have little to no qualms about.

Aside from the actor's looks, it's perfectly understandable why these people were cast for the roles they have. They're perfect in this play. They're believable, likeable, and for the canon adaptations, they're believable for who they play. And that, I believe, is the most important thing. Looks are perfectly forgivable when the acting is on point. And one of the many good things about Shougo playing Ciel is that even his voice matches the character very well, so honestly, kudos to this guy.

On top of just acting, there are a lot of fighting parts and aerobics in this first play. I know that some of the actors know martial arts and others know aerobics, and that helps a lot. Stage fighting can be more difficult than actual fighting, especially since you don't want to cause unexpected injuries! A lot of trust must be between these actors, because hoo. I don't think I could let someone spin me around and flip me (like how Maylene was in her fight!).

The singing was great—and so far I've had the great benefit of attending musicals that were all on point as far as singing. Which brings me to the medleys. The songs were just as in character as the speaking script. Ciel's contemplation and duet with Yuuki made sense. Ciel's character is hardened by the misfortune he suffered at a very young age (and continues to suffer), but with Yuuki around, he wonders about the life he would have lead had things changed and if this is the only life he'll ever have considering the way things are now. And of course, Undertaker's medley was just as outlandish as he was. The trio (Finny, Maylene, and Bard) had an upbeat song that kicked off the entire play. I wish I could go through everyone's song and part, but I think that's a detailed discussion that I just can't manage to orchestrate today.

So this musical won me over: casting, scripting, and execution. They picked a great group of people to carry the Kuroshitsuji/黒執事 torch. This adaptation is great, and I can tell that there was a lot of work put into this. The cast proves to be loveable even at curtain call, and personally, I boost this musical to the highest high. If you are proficient in Japanese, I would suggest watching this raw, but there are subs out for pretty much every language at this rate. Be sure to view them if you can and purchase the DVDs if you're able to as well.

I want my own physical copy, and I can't wait to wear it out from watching (and just listening to it) over and over again. Can you tell I'm smitten? Aah. I can't help but be a little bias sometimes, especially when ambitious projects are executed as well as this one.

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