Art and Competition: PPPPPP vs Blue Period

I do feel unfair writing this post considering that PPPPPP (which will be 6P in this post from this point onward) vs Blue Period. Especially since 6P is a manga that appeared on SJ recently and while Blue Period’s anime has just started, it’s source material is an award winning manga. Still, I think there is a valid comparison to be made between them. Especially since they appeared around the same time and are about people pursuing some kind of art. 6P has Lucky Otogami who wants to prove his family wrong by playing the piano at the skill level he wants to. Meanwhile, Blue Period is over here is about Yatora Higuchi who is going for his passions in pursuing his dream of becoming a painter at Tokyo University of the Arts.

As a musician who has chosen to just have it as a hobby instead of a lifestyle or a profession, competition is something that happens when people have the same interest next to each other. Unlike these two source material where the characters are solo, being in band is constant competition on multiple levels. In Highschool, an instrumentalist isn’t just competing against the person next to them playing the same instrument, but also somehow must cooperate with them when competing as a band against other bands. Knowing that I was never the best, I dropped out of that eventually and now I just play in community band, at my church when there wasn’t a pandemic, and record online sometimes. I am at a level where I can handle those pretty well, but I know that I am far from being a professional. They constantly compete with each other.

So having that experience, I can tell you that Blue Period does feel like the real deal when it comes to competition. Especially while Yatora’s skill is always growing and expanding from the great teaching and caching he’s been given, there is still the terror of having everyone around you being better and yet you must perform. And yet, you must go through the motions and produce a product that will be critiqued and judged to everyone else’s works. While Yatora learns more techniques and thoughts behind art for the audience to explore and know something more about art and painting, it’s presented in a way that makes sense. Its taking us on Yatora’s journey to get into Tokyo University of the Arts. Especially since we, as an audience, can see Yatora’s improvement by what he paints. There is a product showing that Yatora is accomplishing things.

Then there is 6P which is just….there I guess? I wish I was able to explain it a bit more but it’s melodramatic to the core and not in a good way. Lucky is one of seven brothers, but was kicked out from his family of pianist geniuses because he couldn’t play. Then the drama of his family splitting apart because of him, his mother dying in one year. It’s really frustrating that Luck doesn’t seem to be learning the piano for himself, but to show his brothers up. It’s even more frustrating that the mangaka behind it do not seem to understand music at all? Or just has Lucky moving from learning Twinkle Twinkle Little Star to a music piece that can compete his brother. Especially since there is no competition for him to get a tutor. 6P is just so unnatural that it’s so laughable. Does this manga know its going to get cancelled soon?

I suppose that this is all an explanation on why Blue Period might be one of my favorite anime airing right now vs 6P being a manga that I read to continually see how stupid its going to get. Like I said, this is an unfair comparison but it is an easy comparison to just do you know? Competing for art isn’t something that be be made light of. Unless a person is apart of the .0000001% of people that naturally have the skills to do what they want from the word go, then this is something that people who want to live as a professional artist in some level has to face. Unless a person isn’t seeking to get be paid for their passion and interest, competition is always going to be there. Blue Period gets that fact. 6P felt like it could understand that fact, but then Lucky suddenly learned the piano out of nowhere 7 chapters into the manga. If there is no struggle, there it just comes off as too easy.

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