When one thinks of Sanrio , what come to mind? Usually Hello Kitty and other cute characters, but while Hello Kitty was just barely off the drawing board, the owner Shintaro Tsuji had other plans: Media and Hollywood. From the mid 1970’s to 1980 Sanrio cranked out a number of films most had moderate success but one film in particular Metamorphoses was a bomb. Eventually Mr. Tsuji put his film making ambitions on the back burner, shut down its California office, and concentrating the growing popularity of Hello Kitty. Now Sanrio wants to reenter the entertainment business. First Sanrio is releasing one of their early attempt of filmmaking: The Nut Cracker. Second Sanrio is reentering the entertain business with Sanrio Pictures Entertainment, and there’s Show by Rock.
Show by Rock is anime is about Cyan, a shy and timid high school sophomore who while playing and rhythm game, she is awarded with a guitar call Strawberry Heart, she is suddenly whisked away, a la Tron, to an alternate reality called Tokyo Midi City. Where she discover her playing is a weapon against monsters. She wanders around until she is picked up by Maple Arisugawa, the BSDM loving manger of Braded recodes. She spends her time with her new band mates while trying to unravel why and he purpose in Tokyo Midi City. One interesting fact is the target of the show is young men who are anime and game fans.
Hello Kitty doesn’t make a showing except for a slight reference in the first episode in a kittyish plush. The show seems un-sanrio like in the character Maple Arisugawa, who is known for having a BSDM session with his secretary who happens to be a dominatrix and in the second episode obviously drunk. Show may have found it stride in Japan , during the 30th annual character ranking Shingan Crimsonz (Show by Rock) is first, Plasmagica (Show by Rock) is fourth and Hello Kitty is 10th at this time. Perhaps Sanrio is making the right call in the age of declining but still dominant in popularity of Hello Kitty It also appears Funimantion is streaming a dub version of Show By Rock.