Takarazuka: Gyakuten Saiban ~ Yomigaeru Shinjitsu

April 25th, 2011

Gyakuten Saiban ~ Yomigaeru Shinjitsu (逆転裁判 −蘇る真実−), aka Phoenix Wright~ Truth Ressurected, starring Ranju Tomu, performed by the Takarazuka Cosmos Troupe was a fun, multi-fandom 3-D romp inside a lot of people’s heads.

I have not played – or indeed seen – any of the Phoenix Wright games. They were quite obviously loads of fun to play, as people on both sides of the ocean went gaga for them. Having never seen them, I can’t tell whether the Takarazuka musical based on them is related in a non-superficial way to the game, but I can say this – it was a lot of fun to watch, even if it wasn’t much “like the game.”

Phoenix, a rising young lawyer, is distraught that someone he knows has been arrested for a murder in California. Ranju Tomu does a very convincing job as a rising young lawyer, despite the suit. In fact, in some scenes I felt complete confidence that she could pass as a young man on the street if she kept up that body language. Gone was the huge, fake swaggering movements of drag kings, and instead actual body language that read “guy” to me. That was pretty much the first time I had seen that in a Takarazuka show. It interests me greatly. Was it her natural inclination? Was it choreographed? Was it self-study or mere chance?

I’m told that the love story was created out of whole cloth for the musical. That’s okay…Phoenix needed to have a love interest for several reasons – one, it’s Takarazuka, duh!, and two, it provides a short, simple, neat motivation for him bothering to care about Leona Clyde, since we don’t really have too much time to develop that backstory.

Unlike most music written originally for Takarazuka shows, the songs were short and only one repeated the word “aisheteru” endlessly until we couldn’t take it seriously anymore. Tomu has a few songs that really worked to the strongest part of her range. Nanaho Hikaru was, I thought, underused as Edgeworth. She’s got a great voice and a great stage presence. I’d like to see her make Top Star.  Miwa Asahi was great as Leona, and an unusually strong female lead.

Interestingly, this show had “opening credits” as part of the show, something I’ve never seen before.

Despite my lack of familiarity with the source material, I was able to grok the key character points with no difficulty and overall, found this to be a very enjoyable afternoon matinée show on my TV. ^_^

Ratings:

Overall – 8

While watching the show, I found myself having to explain the game to Bruce, which was challenging, as I know of it rather than know it, and didn’t have a DS to show him. Nonetheless, even with the limited information I was able to provide, it was an easy show to follow. I won’t tell you whodunit, but I did learn the word for New York State Governor. ^_^

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3 Responses

  1. apricotsushi says:

    I had the chance to see this in Japan, but it sold out so quickly! I’d love to get my hands on the DVD sometime. I, too, only “know” of the games, but haven’t played them. Thanks for the review!

  2. kirakirasora says:

    I’m glad you enjoyed the show overall. I was a fan of Nanaho Hikaru’s when she was still with the revue company.

    Capcom and Hankyu did a great thing by teaming up. They certainly widened their customer base. I got into the games myself after following the musical’s progress.

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