A review of “Alien Stage”

“Alien Stage,” stylized as ALIEN STAGE or ALNST, is an anime style series of music videos on YouTube produced by VIVINOS. The series tells the stories of humans held captive on an alien planet and forced into a singing competition that works similar to The Hunger Games, wherein if you lose, you die. It is in Korean, but there are English and Japanese subtitles available. The most recent update to this series, that being the third round of competition, released on Thursday, January 5. 

“Alien Stage” is, firstmost, very pretty to look at. The use of light, especially during round one, is wonderful. It is very clear that the characters are on a stage from the start, and despite that being in the title, it isn’t clear what’s going on at first. 

The characters are very well-executed, as well. For example, Mizi, the “protagonist,” is charismatic with her design alone, but that’s not where it stops. The way she’s portrayed is that of a very sympathetic character, almost painfully so.

See, “Alien Stage” is very character-oriented. Despite it all, despite the horrible circumstances, the humans in this series still develop deep relationships with each other, especially so with Mizi and Sua (the girl with the white dress), for example. The way the characters interact is beautiful, despite no real dialogue between them.

The most recent update centers around Ivan, a stoic boy who was raised under very rich aliens, according to the imagery in his song. He had become infatuated with Till, a rebellious boy who the previous round was dedicated to. Unfortunately, Till is already infatuated with someone himself; that someone being Mizi. Ivan’s song centers around his sorrow about the situation.

The vocalist did a superb job at filling the song with emotion; despite the language barrier, it is very apparent just how sad Ivan is during the song.

“Alien Stage” is ripe for viewer interpretation due to the ambiguity of so much of it, as well as how much symbolism is hidden in it. It’s a great watch as well as being quite short, capping at just over ten minutes. I’d highly recommend it to anyone who has an interest in anime or perhaps music centered stories.