Hi-sCOOL! Seha Girls is available on Crunchyroll and on Hulu. While the series has ended at 13 episodes, new figures are being produced by GoodSmile, and the girls are featured in a few mobile video games.
Hi-sCool! Seha Girls is a show that had a ton of promise early on, but needed hefty work with writing towards the end. Still, it's proven to be the best thing for parents to introduce their kids to SEGA with, and has a cult following.
The premise was pretty cool, three girls go to SEGA High School, to learn about SEGA and their video games, and there was plenty of video game humor directed at those of us who grew up with the iconic SEGA theme. The commercial break eye-catches are worth pausing, as they feature awesome video game trivia.
The first three episodes were great with jokes,but as the episodes went along, the acting from the girls became over-acting, where they get too hyper, and their motions become exaggerated. They started having self-esteem issues where the scene didn't call for it, and it started being a little aggravating. Eventually, the show had fewer SEGA jokes, and more scenes of Saturn and Dreamcast freaking out over everything, and Mega Drive trying to over analyze each and every game.
The running gag of Saturn always being held back, despite being the more powerful of the three was a cute joke about the Sega Saturn console being wrongfully forgotten, but the joke got old after a few episodes, as did the cliche of Mega Drive being an emotionless wallflower, simply because she is older and smarter than the other two, and wears glasses.
One running gag that fits however is Dreamcast's use of the internet. Anytime she needs to look for something online, her brain makes dial-up sounds. It's a very cute gag, for a character that is the most baby-like of the trio. Dreamcast's adorable nature has actually helped to revive interest in the console, and the gag was actually a great way to teach younger audiences about the internet.
The designs of the girls were all done by the artist KEI, and you can really tell, because all three girls look like Miku Hatsune. Mega Drive even has a similar shirt to Miku, while Saturn has very Miku-like sleeves and pigtails, but with KAiTO's jacket opening. Dreamcast is the most original of the three, with a Dreamcast controller as her headpiece. The show was made with the freeware MikuMikuDance, so it's a cute tie-in, but it's very obvious KEI was probably working on another Project DiVA round of costumes while drawing the girls up. Even his other sketches for other consoles are reminiscent of Miku. Since Project DiVA is also made by SEGA, this will be forgiven.
Speaking of, I'm a little surprised that it took an entire team of animators to make the series, when the average 13 year old MMD user can whip out the same sort of show alone. With each episode being under 12 minutes long, it's not hard to imagine one or two Momi Cup winners making the show, and yet this had a team of more than 20 people. Too many cooks spoil the pot as they say. This could be a reason why the show lacks focus.
The opening and ending credits tease NiGHTS and Chao involvement, but they remained absent from the show, save but for background toys. There was little to do with other teased games, like Altered Beast, and even Sonic was barely around except for cameos and one strange episode where the girls rode on him. SEGA royally missed out on the tie-ins here. Perhaps this was a problem with licensing, but it's an absolute shame that the most popular characters were overlooked.
Predictably, the three girls are Moe representations of the Sega consoles, and other girls they see in a tournament are more of the same. While we never get to see much of them, there is a KEI drawn girl for Game Gear, Pico and a few other forgotten SEGA consoles. And yes, each girl looks more and more like Miku.
The series ends where we discover the school is just a figment of the collective imagination of the SEGA developers. When the three girls graduate, they are sent through time, and each one becomes a home console for a random family. It's a cute nod to the girls' origins, and provides a simple enough explanation for all the weirdness, but ultimately is a tear-jerker ending.
Overall, it's a cute series. It's colorful, educational but isn't very strong. But then too, it doesn't overstay it's welcome. At just 13, 12 minute episodes, it's just right for a TV-G crowd.
Codename Sailor earth
Codename Sailor Earth is a lifelong anime and wrestling fan. IRL she is cartoonist Koriander Bullard, formerly Koriander Ake, a happily married Chicagoan. Her favorite anime is Sailor Moon. A baby in the late 80's, the first anime titles she ever saw were Speed Racer, Voltron and Robotech.