From the creators of the well-known science fiction anime Cowboy Bebop and Mekakucity Actors, a new original television series have arrived on this April known as “Listeners.” The anime story and concept is like a rhythm game and which is a genre of music-themed action game that takes the player’s music sense of rhythm to beat it. They are mainly focused on the simulated performance of a musical instrument or dance. Some of them include a multiplayer mode, which makes it even more competitive.
Games like Guitar Hero, Osu!, Dance Dance Revolution are some of the well-known revolution game famous around the world.
There are even virtual idols who are featured for the rhythm game, especially Hatsune Miku, AKB48 Group Official Music Game, The Idolmaster, Love Live! School Idol Festivals and BanG Dreams! Girls Band Party!. Many of them are even adapted as an anime with good storylines.
Listeners is an anime like these virtual rhythm game where the characters fight with the music and rhythm in the story. If you are into these anime like Love Live!, BanG Dreams, or Mekakucity Actors, you will love this new series.
The story of “Listeners” takes place in a world where mysterious lifeforms threaten humanity’s way of life. They are known as “Earless.” Like all stories, this story to have warriors, the last hope of humanity, these heroes are known as “Players.” Who fight with their special combat method by interface with mecha known as “Equipment.”
Around those times, a young teen boy name Echo Rec witnessed a fight between that threatening “Earless” and the savior/hero “Players” 10 years ago, where the player named Jimi got fame and become the legend. From that time, he has been longing to meet a Player again.
And then, after the ten years, while working on excavating garbage, he found a girl name μ (“Myuu“). She, too, is a “Player” but also suffering from amnesia. Together they set on the adventure to discover the unfold the mysteries of her predecessor, Jimi.
Characters and Cast
Echo Rec (Voice Actor: Ayumu Murase)
Echo Rec is the male protagonist of the series who lived with his older sister, Swell Rec, in the scrap town of Liverchester. He worked as a waste collector. After the Project Freedom Festival witnessing the legendary Jimi, he has longed for Players.
Though he looks a bit timid, he has a great passion for equipment and made his amp that summon mecha equipment to fight. But on a normal day on his work, he found a girl named μ (Myuu), which started the route of this story.
μ (Myuu) (Voice Actor: Rie Takahashi)
A mysterious girl who is found by the male protagonist Echo Rec in a scrapyard. She had amnesia and is a player as she holds an input jack on her back. She became the pilot of AC30 with her partner Echo Rec. She has thick gray eyebrows with a pale blue eye and a long silver hair which reaches to her shoulder.
Her hole on her around the waist back, also known as input jack to connect with amplifier AMP which makes her player. She also has a bullying personality and had an unusual tube with her. Together with Echo Rec, she heads on a journey to seek her journey.
Jimi Stone free (Voice Actor: Jun Fukuyama)
A legendary male Player who is quite difficult to understand, including his both origin and purpose. This mysterious Player has a trump card from the Project Freedom Festival, which was ten years ago. With a huge explosion during the operation, he disappeared and became a legend.
He was known to be the one who once saved Humanity and been longed by Echo Rec since the first time he saw him.
Nir (Voice Actor: Rie Kugimiya)
One of the female characters and a player in the “Listener.” She is the student of the training school known as Freak Academy of Players. Even though being a player, she was ill-treated and harassed by others, which made her alone, and she felt lonely.
She was a shy and catastrophic character but changed when she met with Echo Rec.
Roz (Voice Actor: Kana Hanazawa)
One of the female character in “Listeners” and the final survivor of the Nome People which was destroyed by the Project Freedom Festival 10 years ago. She was supporting the coexistence with the southern pear. Due to the destruction of Fes, she lost her family at a young age.
The coexistence with the southern pears made her think as a family, which is why she refused to eradicate the southern pears and decided to live alone in a city closed by the wall. She is familiar with Jimi Stonerfree before his participation in the festival.
You can check the trailer here:
Listeners is an original television anime series that is produced by MAPPA (established by Masao Murayama, the founder and former producer of Madhouse). This original television anime series is created by Dai Satou, Jin, and Taichi Hashimoto and also directed by Hiroaki Ando. The Character designs are from Shinpei Kamada, and the music was composed by L!th!um.
Listeners premiered on April 3, 2020, and still ongoing on the Animesim programming block on MBS, BS-TBS, and TBS. Funimation has acquired the series for the English dubs and streams on Funimation, Wakanim, and AnimeLab.
- Rie Takahashi will perform the series for 12 ending theme songs.
- Jimi Stonefree’s name might be a reference from an American Guitarist, Jimi Hendrix, and his song “Stone Free.”
- Nir’s name is a reference from the American rock band Nirvana and her design, which is especially inspired by frontman Kurt Cobain. Her shirt is a reference of “Polly” one the song of Nirvana.
- Echo Rec’s name is a reference to the Binson Echorec, which is the famous echo effect used by English rock band Pink Floyd.
- Dai Sato is known to be a famous scriptwriter and the creator of Cowboy Bebop. He also worked on Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex and Wolf’s Rain. He is also the chief scriptwriter of Resident Evil: Revelations 2 of 2015.