Arguably the most talked about anime of the spring 2023 line-up, Oshi no Ko is a show that has unexpectedly taken the world by storm and even ranked higher than beloved series returning for new seasons like Demon Slayer.


The idol anime, which is helmed by Doga Kobo, received a hugely positive reception when it was first released this month. The music video for its opening song garnered over 22 million views in six days, and it has even toppled Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood from first place of MyAnimeList’s top anime of all time listings – with just one episode to its name

The question is, then, is all the buzz around the show valid?

Oshi no Ko centres on gynaecologist Goro Amemiya who is obsessed with idol Ai Hoshino, a singer in the group B Komachi who he was first introduced to by a late cancer patient he was fond of.

Ai is the starry-eyed idol of his dreams, so it comes as a big surprise to him when she suddenly appears at his countryside hospital and is 20 weeks pregnant. The 16-year-old is expecting twins, and she wants to give birth to the children in secret so that she can continue her idol career afterwards.

Goro chooses to set aside his adoration for the idol to help her during the pregnancy, and everything is going well until he is murdered by one of the singer’s stalkers on the day she is due to give birth.

Fortunately for him, he is reborn as Ai’s son Aquamarine, aka Aqua, and his memories of his previous life are still intact. So too has his fraternal twin sister, Ruby, who was also reincarnated, though she’d rather keep coy on her past life.

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What follows in the 90-minute opening episode is certainly a shock. Idol anime tend to rely on tried and tested formulas, which is no bad thing but does mean that they can seem quite predictable. There are certain expectations with an idol anime, and they often feature light-hearted stories and a catchy soundtrack.

This is not the case with Oshi no Ko (the soundtrack is fantastic, though, don’t worry). What we mean is the anime knows what it is but it’s also not afraid to deal with heavy topics, and it navigates the darker side of the entertainment industry with great skill. It examines some difficult subjects and brings up valid points about the idol industry such as the unrealistic expectations placed on the shoulders of those at the centre of it.

The captivating story can, of course, be linked back to Aka Akasaka’s original manga, but the anime adaptation does an excellent job of bringing it to life on the small screen.

Oshi no Ko will have several surprises in store for viewers, which we are loathe to spoil here, but the story does go to some unexpected places in its first episode, easily distinguishing it amongst this season’s offerings.

Doga Kobo’s animation is also stunning, particularly when it comes to the character designs and the musical numbers, the latter of which are as thrilling to watch as they probably would be if they had been done in real life.

The second episode largely sets the stage for Aqua and Ruby’s lives in a world that is determined to tear them down, with Aqua hellbent on vengeance and his sister aiming for the same starry heights her mother reached as an idol.

It doesn’t pack quite the same punch as the first episode, but that doesn’t mean it’s not as effective in its execution. The show certainly has a lot of potential and it has set up a fascinating story for the remainder of its 11-episode run.

Oshi no Ko really did hit the ground running with its no holds barred premiere episode, and if you watch it then you are likely to get sucked into Ai, Aqua and Ruby’s story completely. It’s hard not to become invested after such an action-packed first episode, and it does make a convincing case for the show being a standout in the medium overall.

If the series keeps up this momentum, then it will certainly earn its title as one of the best anime around. But, for now, it can at least be said that this show is one to watch, and most certainly worth your time.

Oshi No Ko is available to stream on HiDIVE. Check out more of our Fantasy coverage or visit our TV Guide and Streaming Guide to find out what's on.


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