Do male idols have it worse after all?

IdolWedding

Now, if you guys read my blog at all you’ll know that I have very conflicting feelings about the no dating rule in the idol world. I have made a few posts on their own about it. My most recent, and in my humble opinion my best piece on the subject was, The no dating rule and Johnny’s special treatment. In that post I was able to vent all my frustrations about how male idols have it a lot easier than female idols do in regards to relationships. And the post was partially fueled by all the anger I accumulated over the years from beloved idols that were ripped out of their groups because of scandals.

The deeper and deeper I venture into the idol fandom the more clearly I see things, and the stronger an opinion I form about certain things. While I do still believe that male idols are getting special treatment in the short-term, I’m also starting to think that male idols may be getting the short end of the stick in the end after all.

And this post is of course talking about marriage. Marriage is considered one of the biggest, and arguably most important, moments in someone’s life. Certain people have to fight for the right just to be able to get married, and it seems idols aren’t any different. Male idols anyway.

Think for a moment of some of your favorite former female idols. Chances are around half of them have gotten married already and in some cases even have children. Even Nakazawa Yuko’s time finally came. Now think about the ages of these former idols. And more specifically think about the ages these idols were when they got married. Female idols have gotten married anywhere from 20-40. Now let’s look at the ages of male idols. If you exclude the younger members of Sexy Zone, the ages of debuted Johnny’s members range from 18-50. And of those only a small few are actually married.

Let’s look at the youngest former idol that got married that I’m aware of. It’s of course former Morning Musume member Tsuji Nozomi. Tsuji got married when she was just 20 years old. Now let’s look at the roster of Johnny’s members who are around that age. Sato Shori and Kotaki Nozomu are 18 years old. Kikuchi Fuma is 19 years old. Nakayama Yuma and Nakajima Kento are 20 years old. Kamiyama Tomohiro, Hashimoto Ryosuke, Fujii Ryusei, Okamoto Keito, Nakajima Yuto, Chinen Yuri, and Yamada Ryosuke are 21 years. Shigeoka Daiki is 22 years old.

That’s a baker’s dozen of male idols who could technically get married any day now if they were allowed to. Now there are of course several things to factor in. Not every single person wants to get married, not every single person wants to have kids, and not every single person wants to get married that young. And that is true. But for the sake of this blog post let’s pretend that every single male idol does in fact want to get married.

The average age a person gets married is between 25-32 years old. In the United States it’s 27 for women and 29 for men. In Japan it’s 28 for women and 30 for men. But because that’s just the average age and people obviously get married above or below the average I’m going to use the 25-32 age range for the sake of argument. Now let’s see which Johnny’s members fall into that age range shall we?

Kiriyama Akito is 25 years old. Miyata Toshiya, and Hamada Takahiro are 26 years old. Fujigaya Taisuke, Tegoshi Yuya, Kato Shigeaki, Kawai Fumito, and Nakama Junta are 27 years old. Masuda Takahisa, Kamenashi Kazuya, Yokoo Wataru, and Tsukada Ryoichi are 28 years old. Yamashita Tomohisa, Taguchi Junnosuke, Okura Tadayoshi, Kitayama Hiromitsu, Totsuka Shota, and Goseki Koichi are 29 years old. Yasuda Shota, Koyama Keiichiro, and Nishikido Ryo are 30 years old. Maruyama Ryuhei, Ninomiya Kazunari, Matsumoto Jun, Ueda Tatsuya, and Nakamaru Yuichi are 31 years old. Takizawa Hideaki, Murakami Shingo, Sakurai Sho, and Aiba Masaki are 32 years old.

That’s a whopping 30 members of Johnny’s that are around the marrying age. Even if only half of them have any desire to get married and/or have a family that’s still 15 members. Seems like a rather large number if you ask me.

And these are just the male idols that fall into the standard marrying age. It has nothing to do with the members who are younger or older than this who also want to get married. And let me tell you Johnny’s of various ages have voiced their desires to get married. Johnny’s Junior member Kyomoto Taiga said that he wants to be married by the time he’s 30. Yasui Kentaro said he wants to be a father by the time he’s 30. And Iwahashi Genki mentioned how he wants to be a father as kind and understanding as his own father on an episode of Gamushara J’s party.

But I don’t think anything is more heartbreaking than the members who are older and desperately want to get married but can’t. I’m sure all the unmarried members of SMAP and Arashi have probably mentioned at least once that they want to get married. I know for a fact that Arashi members have. MatsuJun even joked that on Arashi’s 10th anniversary all the members should announce their marriages at once. But when it comes to members wanting to get married no member mentions it as frequently and as heartfelt as Sakurai Sho.

But since Sho knows that he’s an idol and the fans would be upset he almost always either downplays, or doesn’t even mention, the wife aspect. Instead he mentions how much he wants to have children. He’s mentioned that he doesn’t even care about having a wife, but he wants a family and he wants to bring a large blanket and have a picnic with them in the park.

 

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He also mentioned that if he has anything else in life he wants to live to be old and have his grandchildren visit him on New Years.

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(translation credit to onaji_sora)

And if that’s not the most heartbreaking thing you’ve ever heard your soul must be missing. We have a poor man who desperately wants to get married but isn’t allowed to because he happens to be an idol. And it’s especially impossible for Arashi since they are national idols. So I ask you dears reader which is truly worse, being a female idol that has to graduate at 25 but after that gets to have a life, family, and most likely a new career, or being a male idol and having the freedom to continue to be an idol for as long as they wish to, but in return has to give up on one of the most important moments of their lives?

And with each passing year it gets worse and worse for every older unmarried Johnny’s member. They are starting to be too old to have kids or at least starting to have it be too difficult to keep up with those kids. Now sure you can have kids whenever you want. There have been people who had kids in their 60s. And my Aunt didn’t have her first and only kid until she was 41. But going from personal experience it makes everything harder. My father turned 35 a month after I was born. I’m 22 now which makes my father 57 years old. And I was my father’s 2nd child.

Since my father was already 40 years old by the time I was a child he was already having a bit of trouble keeping up with me while playing. My childhood friend and I would also joke about how old of a man he was. And he was always the 2nd oldest father in my class. (He only lost because one kid’s father was 60 years old.) You also always hear older men say how much they don’t want a child at this point in their life because they’ll be 60 years old once they graduate high school.

Now of course you could have kids at any age if you’re really willing to, and I’m sure some people are thinking I’m being ridiculous to focus on the age thing so much, but let’s be honest having a child that old isn’t really ideal at all.

And it’s really sad when you think about this because in one sense Sho’s life is completely passing him by. He can have all the success in the world but it doesn’t really mean anything to him because he doesn’t have a family to share it with. He would probably be fine with any level of success just as long as he has a family. And I really feel for the man, I do. Sometimes I wish they would let him be the one Arashi member to get married already. But at the same time it seems unfair because I’m sure every other Arashi member wants to get married just as badly as Sho does.

That’s why no matter how big of an Arashi fan I am, and no matter how upset I’d be, I would understand 100% if they disbanded the group tomorrow so the members could go off and start families. I’ve actually kind of mentally prepared myself for that announcement to happen any day now. The members are always kind of vague when it comes to the future. They’ll say things like they don’t think much about what they’ll be doing in a years time, or they want to continue doing their best in the future. They even once said that Arashi will continue for as long as Ohno is able to keep up with the dances and that it all depends on him.

However, at the same time it’s absurd that male idols have to either give up on having a family or quit. It’s just like Kago Ai said, idols are puppets. They are alive but they are unable to feel or love. Sure, male idols might seem to have the good life initially, partying and having a different girl every night. But eventually you grow up and you realize you want something more substantial than that. But they can’t because someone is pulling their strings.

And the fans don’t make it any easier. They certainly treat idols like puppets, dolls, or another play thing. They wind them up and watch them dance. They dress them up however they like but they must never touch. They place them on a shelf until they gather dust and swiftly cast them aside for the latest model.

People seem to forget that even though they are idols they are still people. That beneath that hard porcelain is a live beating heart. And that honestly has to be the hardest part about being an idol, living for someone else other than yourself.

Arashi – Bittersweet PV preview

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Yesterday the PV preview for Arashi’s upcoming single Bittersweet was released. As you guys know, it’s being used as the theme for Jun’s drama Shitsuren Chocolatier. 

On a random note, I’ve been keeping up with Shitsuren Chocolatier as it airs. I usually wait util a drama has finished airing before I actually watch it. But there have been so many spoiler going around that I’ve just given in and have been watching it as soon as it’s subbed.

Now, when I first heard Bittersweet on Heyx3 I was so pleasantly surprised by the song. It’s was finally a fluffy, light, upbeat, happy sounding song from them again. The dance itself, that was choreographed by Ohno I might add, was simple but incredibly cute. Not to mention that everything about this song was a giant breath of fresh air coming off of last year that seemed to be the year of mature Arashi. I came to expect something as equally sweet from the PV.

But it wasn’t until I read the translation for the song that my entire opinion changed. The song is about love being bittersweet. Imagine that? Well, I was just throw completely off guard by that one. It’s basically about the typical unrequited love, trying to not let memories fade, and so on. Pretty perfect for the theme of Shitsuren Chocolatier. It was at that moment I remembered the only other heartbreak themed song and PV from Johnny’s I could think of. Which of course was NEWS’ Sakura Girl. And at that moment I expected Bittersweet to have a similar theme.

I even tweeted this.

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Well, if this doesn’t further prove that my life calling is making idol PVs I don’t know what is. Because the Bittersweet PV is almost exactly the same as NEWS’ Sakura Girl PV. And I am going to enjoy comparing the 2 PV when the full version of Bittersweet comes out.

In this very short PV preview all we can really see is Arashi looking sad at a train station and looking sad while riding the train. As well as singing while waiting for the train. Gosh, I hope they haven’t give too much away.  What I also gather from the PV preview is they are leaving this town to get away from heartbreak. Except for Ohno. Since they’ve dressed him as a professor I guess he’s traveling to give some sort of a lecture.

And can I point out that buildings behind them make it look like they are in Italy. Or someplace in Europe at least. I don’t understand why a PV about waiting for/riding on a train has to be CG! Would it really have been hard to film this at an actual train station? 

Hey! Say! JUMP – Ai no Arika PV preview

Hey!Say!JUMP

A few days ago Yaotome Hikaru was on Ousama no Brunch promoting his and Inoo’s new drama Dark System Koi no Oza Ketteisen. And it was the perfect opportunity to release the PV preview for Ai no Arika, off of Hey! Say! JUMP’s upcoming double A-side single, Ai no Arika/Aisureba Motto Happy Life, since it’s currently being used as the theme for Dark System.

Before I talk about the PV preview I want to point out that I cannot stand that the official way Ai no Arika is written is as one giant word. And because I don’t particularly care for that I’m not going to write it as such on my blog. I’ll still tag it as that so JUMP fans can find my blog, but that’s about it.

Now, on to the PV preview. I have to say I really like the set for this PV. It’s beautiful, it’s spacious, it looks like it was filmed in some concert hall, and has some really nice high ceilings. There’s even a full orchestra behind them which is great. However, I thought it was great when it was used in Arashi’s Truth PV back in 2008. Beside the fact that Arashi’s Truth PV had a smaller set and it had a darker and grittier PV to make the more mature song, and Hey! Say! JUMP has a wide open set with bright lights to match the more happy positive song, it’s pretty much the same exact PV. And I’m honestly disappointed with that.

The outfits for this PV aren’t anything to write home about either. They are just red suits, while they are nice outfit they’re not really anything special. Especially since I’m 90% sure that Hey! Say! JUMP has worn straight up red suits before. But I can’t remember  exactly when. The closest I can remember is when they wore sleeveless red suits during the Summary 2011 concert.

The only part of this PV that did seems to have potential are Hikaru’s rap scenes. I mean they actually look really cool. He’s wearing 2 different outfits and there are some interesting camera angles and effects going on. However, the actual rap itself is so awkward and kind of awful, and doesn’t fit in the song at all, that’s it’s my absolute least favorite part of the song.

And it is a little sad that only Hikaru gets this special part in the song and PV even though Inoo is also in this drama. Sure, Hikaru is probably the lead. But remember how Super Delicate was the theme for Ryosuke’s and Yuto’s drama Risou no Musuko? Despite Ryosuke being the lead of that drama the song and PV were pretty much solely dedicated to them. But I guess that’s too much to ask for when Inoo is involved. But even Hikaru is on the bottom half of popularity within Hey! Say! JUMP, so I don’t get it.

I guess it could be that it’s easy to have Hikaru do his normal rapping while Inoo sounds like a frog while singing and can’t easily lead a song.

Take a ride with Hey! Say! JUMP

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What better way to bring in the new year than to have my first PV review of the new year be of one of my favorite idol groups? Though Hey! Say! JUMP’s Ride With Me was released last year, it’s close enough. I actually intended to do this PV as soon as it came out but I was too busy with my end of the year posts, and so here we are.

I am actually surprised that I ended up liking this PV more than I thought I would. Even though the PV is incredibly cheap and there’s not really much going on in the final version than what we saw in the PV preview, I still like it. I think the PV is really fun. I think they actually put in a lot more effort into this PV than it seems. While at first looks all you can really notice is that obnoxious jungle gym/cage made out of what looks like PVC pipes looming in the background. For a second it felt like we were transported back to the Super Delicate PV with those white abstract art pieces.

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But in a weird way I’m into them. Mostly because without them they would just be in an empty room dancing on that same metallic  reflective material that they used in the over PV.

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I can really appreciate is that they added some other element to the dancing set, no matter how random it is. I also really like that throughout the PV they shine lights on the white metal piece in tune of the song. Or at least it looks like it’s in tune of the song to me.

I could really take or leave the second main set of the PV which is that neon rainbow hallway they use for the close-up shots. Not only do they look like they cost $2 to make they give off a similar feel to Kisumai’s Ai no Beat dance version PV where they did their close-up scenes in a hallway full of graffiti written in black light ink.

AiNoBeat

You guys also know that I don’t like those scenes because of the awful styling.  While I do think members like Yuto, Takaki, Inoo, and Hikaru were able to not have the horrendous hairstyles the rest of the guys have, I don’t think anyone really escaped the bad outfit styling. I don’t think many guys wake up and say, “Today I’ll wear a mustard colored motorcycle jacket.” I’ve never actually seen motorcycle jackets for men in any other color but black or brown. Maybe I’m being a bit biased since Momusu pulled off bright neon motorcycle jackets extremely well.

MDS

I’m sorry I just think Hey! Say! JUMP look ridiculous in them. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. I think the blue and red jackets are the only ones that possibly pass.

But all of those terrible motorcycle jackets are forgiven when we see the guys in those tuxedos. Definitely the highlight of the PV for me. The guys look so classy, dapper, and absolutely gorgeous. I also really like the black CG shapes in the background. It’s relatively simple, but I think small touches like that that keep you from getting bored are perfect. Because let’s be honest, if they left that white it would have been too plain and I would have been complaining about it instantly.

But I think the real win for this PV is the amount of screen time everyone gets. It is finally what I’ve always hoped for for HSJ, we get to see everyone! And for a decent amount of time! Remember the Super Delicate PV where Inoo and Keito literally got two solo scenes that were 2 seconds longs? That was a grim time for the group.

But HSJ have really been turning things around with their latest releases. In Come On A My House there was a pretty equal amount of screen time and in Ride With Me we get completely equal screen time and everyone gets lines. There is literally nothing else I can possibly ask from them.

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Tell me that the lights aren’t in sync with the music here.

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The shadowy figure of Ryosuke just standing there, reminding everyone who is the most popular.

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I could do without all these seizure inducing scene changes.

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Come on now, Chinen looks ridiculous.

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Daiki doesn’t look completely awful I suppose.

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I really wish their dancing outfits were any other color but white. It’s too boring.

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Ryosuke is trying so hard too look hot, but I’m sorry not with that hair.

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Am I the only one who thinks the way he parts his hair is similar to the way is was styled in the Over PV?

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Though obviously in Over her had more bangs and split them.

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The technicolor lights are a little distracting to be honest.

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WTF is Daiki even doing?

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Oh Inoo.

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What’s with the sudden rush of Takaki feelings? He looks really good here.

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Thankfully my beloved Yuto manages to not look stupid.

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RIP Keito’s lovely long hair.

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Go away Takaki.

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Yuto looking adorable.

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Lookin’ good Ryosuke.

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It’s reasons like this that he’s the most popular.

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That slight wink!

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Can we all agree that Daiki has no idea what to do during his close-ups? Right now he’s playing air piano.

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Yabu is a cutie, too bad his hair is terrible here.

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I think it’s funny that Inoo looks the same in practically every PV.

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I hate this ride with me dance move with a burning passion.

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Hikaru looks the best with black hair.

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Cutie.

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Yuto in a tux, I don’t think life gets much better than this.

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Inoo’s tie is so cool.

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I hate when they style Keito’s hair like this.

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Hikaru looks so cute.

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For some reason Ryosuke’s hair looks much better here.

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Why are they covering their eyes?

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I didn’t even notice Keito’s shirt was open a bit. Thanks a lot stylist.

Johnny’s Countdown 2013-2014

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I’m bringing you another yearly tradition to this blog, and that’s my overview/review, whatever you want to call it, of Johnny’s Countdown Concert. I always figure since I’m watching it anyway why not give my thoughts about it? I would do the same thing for Kohaku if 1. It wasn’t 4 hours long and 2. I didn’t live stream it. I only do this review 50% because I can never find a decent live stream of this and have to end up downloading it anyway.

This year I am a day late making my post about it and I apologize. But my computer was being super slow yesterday and there was no way I was going to take over 2 hours to download this. Today my computer is feeling much better I guess because it only took me 45 minutes.

Even though we all know the big news of the night, JOHNNNY’S WEST4’s formation and debut announcement, I’m sure I’ll still be able to enjoy it despite it not being a surprise anymore.

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Kinki Kids hosting again. Isn’t it official by now? I doubt they even think about asking another group to host at this point.

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Look at that lone Hikaru uchiwa, and that lone male fan.

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Look at all those hideous costumes at once. It wouldn’t feel like Johnny’s without them.

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It’s a good thing that Glass no Shounen is one of the few Kinki Kids songs I actually like, because we have to hear it every single year during the debut medley. Also, I can’t even with how serious Tackey looks while backdancing.

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I have to laugh that the Juniors have the better outfits. Also, I better enjoy these 2 seconds of YasuKen because this is probably all I get to see him. Do you see him behind Massu?

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Look at my beloved Yuto being front and center of Hey! Say! JUMP.

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2/3 of Sexy Zone can perform this year. Only 5 more until all of Sexy Zone can perform.

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Oh god I have nightmares about roller skates. Though how fitting of them to be performing a Hikaru Genji song.

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Well, Yuma looks super out of place here.

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3 of my favorite Johnny’s members in a row, it’s a JCD miracle.

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Ryosuke is blocking the view of Yasui Kentaro and Fukasawa Tatsuya. 

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I know that no one cares, but that’s a great jacket Uchi is wearing.

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Massu being his adorable self.

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Oh look Sanada Yuma.

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Tackey’s voice doesn’t really fit for Daite Senorita to be honest.

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Juri’s creepy smile through everything that’s going on.

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Look at that Taiga is there too!

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This is the best part of the entire countdown, no one can tell me any different.

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This would be my exact reaction.

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Baby.

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What song are they even singing here? I’ve never heard it in my life.

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Are you serious Daiki?

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Well, I certainly appreciate Noon Boyz singing with Sexy Zone.

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Jesse being super annoying.

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Oh man my favorite Juniors Taiga and YasuKen. They are actually in it a lot more than I expected.

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Massu pushing Kei-chan is the greatest thing ever.

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It’s so cool to see so many Johnny’s at once.

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Happy New Year again.

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Oh look, another dude.

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Way to start singing too early Tegoshi. You’ve ruined everything.

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Look how close the cameraman and sound guy have to stand to them.

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So, does the amount of Arashi and Kanjani8 songs they’re performing mean that they aren’t haven’t prerecorded footage of those groups? Or Tokio either for that matter.

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I think I maybe have just gotten my answer with them performing Monster next.

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Oh man I almost didn’t even notice Tsuka falling in the background.

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Oh look YasuKen changed his outfit. Speaking of Juniors, where’s Matsumura Hokuto? He’s old enough to perform and an extremely popular Junior, but I haven’t seen him once. I mean, I even saw Shintaro before it hit midnight.

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My beloved Fumito. Also, it’s the year of the horse. If they don’t say or do something about how they always say he looks like a horse I’ll be so disappointed.

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I haven’t mentioned this yet, but boy does Yamapi look so good here.

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Are you serious that Tackey gets the horse hat?

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Ok, it’s actually a little sad now that Fumikyun is saying he looks like a horse so he doesn’t need a hat. Way to turn it from funny to making me feel slightly bad.

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Oh man the stacked heads. Also, this song is my jam.

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I’m sorry, I feel the need to point out how perfect Yuto looks here.

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Ok, I wondered why I didn’t see KAT-TUN. Apparently they took over Kanjani8’s concert in Kyocera Dome.

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WTF is that weird chunk in Yamapi’s eye?

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So, we can get recorded footage of Sexy Zone though.

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Oh look the new group announcement.

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You know this was the first time I heard this guys sing, and they are better than I thought they would be.

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Wait why is Matsumura Hokuto in the under 18 section when he’s 18? I don’t get it. He turned 18 in June. I mean Juri is 3 days older than Hokuto and he performed after midnight. So, what’s going on?

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How awkward is it that Yamapi had to walk right past NEWS as they came in?

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Cutie.

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Look how good the guys born in year of the horse look. Also, they were all born in 1990, which means only 2 more years until it’s my year, year of the monkey!

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I’m not sure why Shingo is randomly there, but ok.

News that shocked the end of the year

Yuko

Well my dear readers it’s yet another new year. And yet another year with JM. This blog has had a lot of ups and downs, but it’s like home to me and I can’t really ever leave it. I want to wish everyone out there a Happy New Year! I know it’s a bit late, but I couldn’t give a proper greeting yesterday since I feel asleep before midnight because I woke up too early to watch the Kohaku stream. But I’m gonna shake off the New Year’s confetti and the triedness from yesterday and get to blogging.

Yesterday was New Year’s Eve and I honestly didn’t expect much from it. As an idol fan New Year’s means the same thing every year. Watching as much as the Kohaku stream as humanly possible and searching for a Johnny’s Countdown stream, usually to no avail. And this year we got something else to sweeten the pot, the Hello!Project Countdown Party. Though it only sweetened things slightly because it wasn’t televised. But the setlist alone and knowing that it’s getting a DVD release is all I need to be satisfied about it honestly.

But this year proved to not be more of the same, standard performances from your favorite idols or a setlist to die for with your favorite graduated idols and groups. No, this year we got surprising news with each event. Whether the news was good or bad, it was shocking to say the least.

The first bit of news came from Kohaku. And that was the graduation announcement of Oshima Yuko.

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Now, I can honestly say I did not seeing this coming at all. I was completely blinded sided. I think everyone in the world watching Kohaku let out the same bewildered gasp, even if they don’t care about AKB48. Which I barely do. But even I had to step back and go, “Are they serious right now?” But graduation announcements always surprise me. Even if they have been members for years and it’s about time for them to graduate, I’m still surprised. I’m sure I’ll gasp when Sayumi announces her graduation from Morning Musume.

I honestly didn’t see Yuko graduating now. Everyone was expecting it to be Kojima Haruna next since she was the lead in Heart Ereki. But you have to laugh because everyone was convinced that Mariko was graduating after they changed the janken single to Ue Kara Mariko after she came in first place. But she obviously didn’t graduate for another 2 years almost. So, does that mean we have 2 more years with KojiHaru?

I honestly expected Yuko to last a few more years. Sure she’s 25 now, but Mariko graduated when she was 27. And she’s pretty much AKB48’s center. Who cares that Sasshi beat her this year. We’re talking about the girl that beat Acchan. So, I’m a little surprised by this. 

But I do wish Yuko all the best. It appear that she’ll become a full time actress after she graduates, like Acchan is now. I don’t know much about her acting skills, but people seem to think she’s a decent actress. 

The second bit of news came from the Hello!Project Countdown Party. And that news was Mitsui Aika has decided to study English abroad.

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She did say that she is only taking a break from the entertainment business and when she returns she will remain a member of Hello!Project. Which seems odd because didn’t she switch from H!P to UFP a few months back? I’m pretty sure I remember hearing that.

As a pretty big fan of Aika I can say that I am saddened by this news. Even though she was hardly doing anything within H!P, I was still happy to see her cheerfully MCing or doing the odd performance here and there. And I am going to miss her in the time that she is gone.

Though I do see this being a happy thing in Aika’s life. It immediately reminds me of when Ogawa Makoto went to study abroad in Australia. In my opinion it always seemed like Makoto did that because she wasn’t sure what to do after graduating. Even though that was her reason for graduating in the first place, I always had that impression. I feel that’s the same reason Aika is going to study abroad now. It probably gives her plenty of time to relax and think about what she wants exactly after she comes back. Though that’s just how I feel.

I wonder if Aika realizes how difficult studying abroad really is? I remember when Makoto was talking about her experience she said she was very sad in the beginning. Since she spoke almost no English she couldn’t communicate with anyone and she would often cry because of that. It does make me a little sad that that’s what Aika is in for.

The 3rd announcement, and arguably the biggest news of all, was the announcement of a new Johnny’s group at the Countdown Concert.

Johnny's4West

This new group is called JOHNNY’S WEST4 and is made up of the following members: Nakama Junta, Kiriyama Akito, Shigeoka Daiki, and Kotaki Nozomu

NewGroup

Now, when I first heard this news I was blown away. And I was really excited for a new group. But once I saw who the members were I was hardly excited. This group is made up entirely of Kansai Juniors. And if you know anything about me I don’t follow the Kansai Juniors at all. Half because they never do anything so it’s nearly impossible to really keep up with them and half because pretty much all of the Kansai Juniors are hideous so I can’t be bothered. I will say that it was smart to have this group be made up of B.A.D. and 7 WEST members since they are literally the only relevant Kansai Juniors in Johnny’s. Everyone knows who B.A.D. and 7 WEST are. I mean, even I do without really keeping up with the Kansai Juniors.

A couple of months ago Johnny said something along the lines of, “Don’t you think it’s about time the Kansai Juniors debut?” And from that moment on I attempted to learn a bit more about them since it was pretty obvious they were going to debut any day now. But I could literally only find subbed things of B.A.D. and 7 WEST, and even those were pretty slim.

And I do admit slowly and slowly Shigeoka Daiki has been growing on me. He’s gone from that kid with an obnoxiously large mouth to someone who gets increasingly cuter every time I see him. Personality wise he seems like a pretty typical idol like and energetic so I suppose I could see myself becoming a fan.

I actually could only find things about Junta and Akito, I know absolutely nothing about Nozomu. Junta I’ve always been apprehensive about because he looks like a fish, but it’s good to know that he’s lackluster personality wise too. He seems just like a regular guy nothing really special about him. I do have to laugh that one of his nicknames seems to be JunJun. And it’s even funnier because he can speak a bit of Chinese because he lived in Taiwan because of his father’s work.

Akito is the member who stands out the most to me though. He seems to pretty full of energy and can talk easily. He also seems to be picked on a bunch which is always fun. And regardless he was pretty noisy and full of commotion while the other guys were pretty much silent. 

Akito

However I’ll always remember him as the guy with terrible taste.

I am a little annoyed that my favorite Tokyo Juniors aren’t being put into a new group. Especially since I think the guys who were in Bakaleya6 are about 10 times more popular than any of the Kansai Juniors. But since Daiki and Akito are in this group, maybe there’s hope for this group after all.

Top 100 singles of 2013 part 4

100Covers

And now the moment you’ve all been waiting for, my fourth and final part of this year’s end of the year ranking extravaganza!

Have you been making a mental note of what’s left? Have you been staying up at night rocking back and forth, pulling your hair out, and mumbling, “what song did she pick?” 

Well, most likely not. But hopefully you guys are interested enough in this ranking to still wonder what number 1 is. And as a blogger that’s about as much as I can ask for.

So here we go, start the imaginary drum roll. I now present to you my top 10 idol singles of 2013. The top 10 singles I couldn’t live without this year.

Continue reading “Top 100 singles of 2013 part 4”

Top 100 singles of 2013 part 3

100Covers

Guys we’re getting down to the wire here, can you feel the anticipation building up to see what my top 10 singles are? Well, you should. That’s half the reason why I’m posting this in parts. 

Anyway, today’s rankings are number 40-11. In this ranking we’re going through songs that are turning from just ok songs to songs I can’t live without.

So, without further ado here’s you’re ranking. And I’ll see you tomorrow for the last part!

Continue reading “Top 100 singles of 2013 part 3”

Top 100 singles of 2013 part 2

100Covers

Ok, guys I’m jumping right into part 2 of my end of the year ranking extravaganza. Bringing you numbers 70-41. This is more of the mediocre or average section of the rankings. Songs that are so ok that they barely stand out to me, but I still like them and will listen to every once in a while. But still aren’t good enough to be in the coveted top 20 or 10 positions. 

Let’s get in this int full swing.

Continue reading “Top 100 singles of 2013 part 2”

Top 100 singles of 2013 part 1

100Covers

Are you guys ready once again for JM’s year end of the year ranking extravaganza? I know that I am. As you may have noticed from the title I’m doing things a little differently than previous years. Instead of ranking top 10 best singles, top 10 worst singles, and top 10 album songs like I usually do, I will just be ranking the 100 idol singles that were released this year! I actually had no intention of doing a top 100 ranking, but while I was making a list of all the idol singles that were released this year I mentioned on twitter that there were nearly 100 singles released. And one of my lovely followers suggested that I just add in a few more singles and make it a top 100. And since I liked the idea, and always try to do posts that people suggest, I decided to go for it.

I added in a few graduated member’s of AKB48 singles to make it fit to be a 100. However, shortly after I finished writing this ranking I realized that I forgot to include Yamapi’s solo singles. And I apologize for that. But there was now way I was going to make this a top 102 just to include Yamapi in this. So the shorthand is this: is I absolutely loved Que Sera Sera. If it was included it would have probably been in the top 20 at least. Summer Nude ’13 was just ok. It would have probably floated somewhere around 43 or so. I didn’t include Akanishi Jin’s singles and not because I forgot, but because I don’t really care about them.

Obviously there were way more idol singles released in 2013 than just 100, but I only included idol groups that I either follow or post about on this blog. So the idols featured in this ranking are as follows: Morning Musume, C-ute, Berryz Koubou, S/mileage, Juice=Juice, Satoumi Movement units, AKB48, SKE48, NMB48, HKT48, Maeda Atsuko, Itano Tomomi, Kasai Tomomi, Watanabe Mayu, Kashiwagi Yuki, Takahashi Minami, Kuramochi Asuka, Not Yet, no3b, Arashi, NEWS, KAT-TUN, Hey! Say! JUMP, Tegomass, Kanjani8, Kis-My-Ft2, YuiKaori, Momoiro Clover Z, Passpo, SUPER GiRLS, Fudanjuku, Dempagumi.inc, Cheeky Parade, Fairies, and Dream5.

Ranking 100 singles was an extremely daunting task and took me days and days to write. Some days I regretted ever saying that I was going to do this and writing felt like such a chore. I lacked the creative juices to continue. But other days I had an absolute blast writing it. I was on fire a few times and knocked out 15 or 20 songs in a short amount of time.

So, it’s really up in the air if I will do this next year or ever again. I will tell you one thing though, if I do decide to do it again I will start writing it in November just so I won’t feel so rushed to get it done and posted before the end of the year. Don’t ever let me go on hiatus and come back near the end of the year again. Better yet, don’t ever let me go on hiatus again.

Anyway, on to what you’ve all been waiting for the actual ranking! Since 100 is such a large number I decided to post this ranking in parts. So please enjoy part 1 or 4.

Continue reading “Top 100 singles of 2013 part 1”

Have yourself a very idol Christmas 3

Christmas47

Well, hello there readers long time no see. If you haven’t noticed I haven’t updated this blog in almost two weeks. But don’t worry I’m not leaving you guys again. I’ve already said that that’s not going to happen. No, instead I’ve been working on my end of the year posts. Which is a top 100 singles ranking, for anyone who doesn’t follow me on twitter. Since that was too time consuming I decide to 86 my album song ranking. Though if there’s outcry from my readers I will make that post after the holidays.

But that’s not what this post is about. I decided since tomorrow is Christmas Eve it’s the perfect time to post my annual idol Christmas spam. Which is actually only my 3rd Christmas spam in my blog’s 5 year history. But it’s a tradition now. I’ve been collecting pictures all month to make to make this my biggest and best Christmas post. I collected a whopping 152 pictures for you guys. Which is over double the amount from last year.

I’d also like to take this time to wish my readers a Happy Holidays. Merry early Christmas and Happy early Kwanzaa. Happy belated Hanukkah and Happy belated Winter Solstice. As well as everything and anything in between. Or even happy nothing at all. 

Also, I’ll see you guys after Christmas where you can look forward to my end of the year posts. Though if you care about seeing how my Christmas is going you know I’m totally going to still be active and twitter and possibly tumblr.

So Happy Holidays again and enjoy the spam after the cut! Also credit to yoshiko_mama for all the Johnny’s scans.

Continue reading “Have yourself a very idol Christmas 3”

Hey! Say! JUMP – Ride With Me PV preview

Hey!Say!JUMP

The PV preview for Hey! Say! JUMP’s upcoming 11th single Ride With Me was released. And since the PV preview was come out I’m gonna to use this as the perfect opportunity to talk a little bit about the single.

Ok, while I was away from blogging I spent a decent amount of my time on twitter complaining about how much Hey! Say! JUMP has been mismanaged their entire career and how whoever is in charge of them is completely incompetent. Now, while I do still fell that way, and it’s painfully obvious how they have been mismanaged for years, it seems like the people at Johnny’s have finally gotten their act together in regards to Hey! Say! JUMP. And all I can say is finally. And I really do mean finally. We actually don’t have to wait a solid year for Hey! Say! JUMP to release something new and I couldn’t be more excited.

But not only that HSJ jump is back, and back in a big way. Not only have they finally been allowed to have one of their mature songs be the A-side like Beat and Bounce should have totally been. Inoo and Keito both have lines in this single. Let me repeat that so it fully sinks in. Keito and Inoo have lines, actual lines! In their entire career of HSJ Keito and Inoo have never gotten a line in an A-side before ever. And not only that not just Keito and Inoo have lines but every single member has lines. And Ryosuke doesn’t have the most lines in this single. Daiki actually does.

Now this is huge. This is really really big for them. It means Johnny’s are finally realizing you have to promote each member evenly for the group as a whole to thrive. It means they have a enough faith in the group to not depend on cute songs or Ryosuke to sell their singles. This is an extremely exciting time to be a fan of Hey! Say! JUMP. The single is great and my beloved Keito actually has lines. And a decent amount of lines, not like just 2 words. I honestly couldn’t be happier.

Now, onto the PV preview. The PV looks a little simple so far since the preview is extremely short. All we really see so far is HSJ wearing all white dancing in front of giant white tubing. Which is really just long enough to see that this PV was filled before Keito cut his hair. Thank god. I’m sorry but I’m just not into his new hair style.

We also see 5 seconds of the close-up shots with them singing in front of flashing rainbow colored lights. Which is enough time to see the ridiculous styling of those scenes. You can only really see Ryosuke and Chinen and they are both wearing hideous neon motorcycle jackets and their hair is styled ridiculously. Which means the other member’s outfits aren’t much better.

The only thing that saves this is Ryosuke and Daiki are talking about this single while wearing really cool blue jackets, so hopefully those are part of the not yet seen 3rd outfits for this single.

Even though this preview is really short you can already tell that this PV has a very Arashi’s Calling or Kisumai’s Ai no Beat dance version feel. So, I’m expecting something like that for the finished product of this PV. Which isn’t really shocking. It’s a dance song so it’ll get a dance PV.

Arashi’s being mature, surely a paradox

ArashiLove

Bringing you guys another PV review that is old now, but new to this blog. And this time I picked none other than Arashi’s PV to promote their newest album Love, P.A.R.A.D.O.X. Can I just say I had writing about Paradox like this? But for the sake of this blog post and being accurate I suppose I’ll have to muster through it.

Now I think it’s pretty obvious that I was going to pick P.A.R.A.D.O.X for my next PV. Mostly because I all but confirmed it in my MomoClo post. And much like the MomoClo PV I wanted to review another PV that I loved. Now, I don’t know how deep you guys are into the Arashi fandom, but when this song was released the fandom pretty much exploded. I think everyone died for a brief moment after hearing Sho’s Sakurap for the first time. (And every time since I might add.) And they took it a step further when the PV came out.

Now I have to say I absolutely love this PV. There are no better ways to describe it other than it’s mature, it’s sexy, and it’s so unexpected. Now, not to say that that is a bad thing it just takes some getting used to. Well, for me anyway. If you know anything about Arashi you’ll know that they are known for their super happy and super positive messages when it comes to music. And if you know anything about me you’ll know I live for music like that. So, obviously this Love album as a whole was a totally shock to the system. I went for going oh my god what have they done, to ok I guess I can get into this, until I was finally like wow this is amazing. I might give off the appearance of being laid back and that I go with the flow, but deep down I’m just a grumpy old man that hates change.

It took me awhile to like the music and it took me the same amount of time to like the PV. We’re talking about the group that wore giant popcorn heads and animal costumes during their last two concerts. So, forgive me if I needed a little time to adjust to something so mature. You might also be thinking, “hey aren’t PVs like Breathless and Mada Minu Sekai e mature?” And you’re right, but they were always balanced by their fun other A-side or album as a whole.

But now that I am pretty much used to it I absolutely love it. I am just completely entranced by the guys in this. They just look fantastic. They are sleek and sexy in all black suits, which does give me immediate flashbacks to the Breathless PV. But unlike Breathless these suits do have little accents that differentiated them so they aren’t absolutely identical. I guess that’s something. And it’s not just the suits that are sexy Arashi, managed to make a pretty sexy PV without being so in your face about it. It’s very subtle.

And as I’ve said before in countless female idol bikini PV posts you don’t have to show skin for something to be sexy and alluring. It’s just the easiest way to do so. Now I’m not gonna sit here and act like I don’t appreciate Yamapi’s Ero and Summer Nude PVs because obviously I do. But it doesn’t mean every PV has to do that to be appealing. I also can’t see Arashi being shirtless in a PV ever. It’s just not their image. A lot of Arashi fans also think they are too old for that and also call them middle aged men. When first of all, that’s ridiculous as they are still in their early 30’s. And second of all, you’re not middle aged until you are 40. And I don’t know about Japan but in the US if you’re a male celebrity that people consider attractive you’ll be seeing them shirtless until they are like 50.

Besides being easy on the eyes the PV isn’t exactly a masterpiece in it’s own right. It only has 3 sets and 90% of the PV is filmed using 2 of them. A majority of the PV is filmed in front of those 5 giant light panels. Which I do admit I’m not totally against, because the blue lights in between the panels give off this really cool black and blue light effect. I also really enjoy the close-up where they are just laying in a chair or just looking at the camera. I have to say those scenes are pretty hot. Subtly beckoning the viewing and flashing alluring looks. Just incredible. Can’t you feel me going crazy?

But what I don’t like is that 1/3 of the PV is in black and white. Lately Arashi has really been over doing it with color effects. Lately their PVs have been filled with blue hues (Think Face Down not the subtle blue lights here), black and white, insane amounts of contrast, and standing in a black room with just lights on their faces. Ok, I get it your lighting guy has a field day when you release something new. We get it, but it’s about enough. There’s nothing wrong with a normal lighting with maybe a touch of effects. But not every effect known to man all the time. Before we know it we’ll be seeing Arashi in sepia. The horror.

I also don’t know like the stupid giant red flower they are dancing in. The CG isn’t exactly the worst, but I just find it completely pointless. I’m also sure it’s probably supposed to be a euphemism. But I could honestly do without it.

I do really like the dance though. It’s intricate, it’s intense, and it was really choreographed wonderfully. Good choice to go to New York and have JaQuel Knight do it. The only draw back is that it’s a little too intense to do this dance and sing live. Poor Sho sounds like he needs an oxygen mask by the time he does his rap part live.

Paradox

Unnecessary.

Paradox2

Ohno getting a little carried away with his big solo.

Paradox3

Aiba baby.

Paradox4

I’m not feeling Jun’s hair.

Paradox5

I love how in sync they are.

Paradox6

For some reason I really love this part.

Paradox7

Jeez Nino.

Paradox8

That kick.

Paradox9

Wait a minute, is Nino wearing crushed velvet? For some reason crushed velvet is my weakness.

Paradox10

That face Sho makes for a half a second.

Paradox11

You know what this PV needs? Unflattering split-screen shots.

Paradox12

MatsuJun’s dramatic jacket swing that actually works for some reason.

Paradox13

Nino is just too cute.

Paradox14

Idols winking, my main weakness.

Paradox15

Time for the most awkward part of the song and dance.

Paradox16

Every so often Jun looks really good. This is not one of those times.

Paradox17

Aiba in that hat, goodbye my friends.

Paradox18

It was really nice knowing you all.

Paradox19

Don’t tease me with that pathetic excuse for a wink.

Paradox20

You know what, all is forgiven.

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I have to laugh at this part because of the intense focus they put on it.

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Looking good Ohno.

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Just wow.

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Just no words for this.

Paradox25

Maybe going a little too crazy there Sho.

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I love how it changes scenes while they jump, such a cool effect.

Paradox27

I’m glad there’s clearer lighting now because I really needed to see them in hats better. Also, unintentional Sakuraiba shot.

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Cutie.

Paradox29

Wow Jun’s jacket is gorgeous too.

Paradox30

Jeez.

Paradox31

What are they mouthing here?!

Paradox32

Gorgeous Sho.

Paradox33

Ok, now these split-screen shots are a little better.

Paradox34

Wait a minute, Nino’s jacket is actually blue. That doesn’t fit at all.

Paradox35

I’m not even really into Jun, but this scene man.

Paradox36

I still don’t know what you’re whispering here!

 

What I’ve missed, how I feel, and what’s to come

SK

Now that I’m back to blogging you’d think I’d have everything perfectly thought out. And you’d be absolutely wrong. I’m like a chicken with my head cut off. I’m running around here in such a daze. I’m like a coma patient who’s suddenly woke up after 6 and a half months who is trying to catch up to all the news he’s missed in the time he was out. Except I was awake the entire time and remember everything, so I’m not like a coma patient at all. It’s like I was looking into a big window…you know what I can’t even get my metaphors in order how am I expected to quickly get my blog in order? Let’s just say it’s not as easy as you’d think.

I’m at this point where I’m not sure if I’m supposed to address everything I’ve missed or pretend nothing has happened and pretend this is a new blog and I start from day 1. Get your tissues ready, because I’m going to do the second one. Mostly because it’s the easiest option. But don’t fret I am still going to go over some important opinions on the big things that I’ve missed. But it’s going to be extremely watered down. because let’s be honest I can’t fully remember every emotion I was feeling at the time and I can’t remember absolutely everything I should have been blogging about. So, let’s break this down by agency.

Hello!Project:

H!P3

As you know H!P is my first great idol love and absolutely nothing or nobody can touch it or top it. Now, I’m sorry if that seems extremely biased. But at the same time I make no apologizes. EVERY idol fan has that one group or one agency they consider their number one. Since I personally follow about 20 idol groups and cover about 25 on this blog in total, give me a break.

That being said it’s mostly to say that I still have very fluffy warm feelings for H!P. However, I am starting to get extremely bored with H!P’s song being more and more interchangeable. For a while H!P groups had a distinct sound. C-ute was the group focused on intense dancing so you could expect great dances and dance numbers from them. Berryz Koubou was this quirky, funky group that got the songs you’d never expect them to get because of their age. It was the group where H!P really went all out and took risks with their music. S/mileage was this full dose of sugary idol cuteness and fun. And perfectly balanced things out and is also my personal favorite type of music. Buono was this interesting rock sound. Morning Musume is this unique entity where there sound is usually constantly changing. You could have a ska song, a mature song, and a dubstep song in close proximity and for some reason it worked. And then Juice=Juice stepped on the scene and we got this jazzy adult themed group which was a breathe of fresh air.

Now, that’s H!P at it’s best to me. But the current state of H!P is nowhere near that glory. Instead every single group is making the same song. It’s danceable, it’s electronic, it’s probably got some autotune, and it’s absolutely mature. Where’s the variety in that? Every once in a while Berryz will throw us a fun song. But it’s not really enough. And S/mileage’s fun songs like Yattaruchan and Ee ka even sound too mature for a fun song. And who’s bright idea was it to give J=J a bland and too sweet song like Hajimete wo Keikenchuu? And don’t even get me started on how they really need to bring Buono back already.

That’s how I feel about the music. And I honestly feel like everyone else loves the overall sound. But why? Hasn’t the dance thing been done to death in H!P? Sadly, I think we’ve got a few more years of this. So, there’s not much I can do about that. I just have to hope when the 12th gen comes or that other Kenshuusei group were promised ever gets formed they’ll inject some much needed young flare. But H!P and Tsunku like to screw us around because they know where in too deep to really make a stink about it.

MM2

That being said my love for Morning Musume has skyrocketed. Morning Musume has always been my favorite H!P group and lately my love for them has been on full blast. Just because I am so incredibly proud of my girls. They are working so hard and it really shows in their improved singing and dancing. They are also slowing clawing their way back to their former glory. They are getting consecutive number one singles, they are getting more opportunists to perform on music shows. They were on Music Station for God’s sake. They are even singing the theme for the Japanese Olympic team. Like wow they are doing so well. And honestly just thinking about this makes me so so happy for them. That I’ve loved this girls for years, and loved them during what’s considered their lowest point in history, and the masses are finally starting to see what’s so great about them. And I honestly couldn’t be happier or more proud.

Johnny’s:

Arashi2

I honestly can’t remember the last things I said about Johnny’s before I took my “hiatus.” But I can say that my love fro Arashi has exploded, but I’m not sure when it started. But Arashi is my absolute top Johnny’s group now. Standing well above the rest. Completely smashing former NEWS to pieces. Though anyone that has ever read my blog is well aware why that wasn’t exactly a hard thing to do. But I love Arashi so much now that it’s hard to ever think of a time when I didn’t. I have so much love for them that it’s impossible to think of how there was ever a time I liked another group more than Arashi. If this 6 month break did anything it was give me enough time to watch a good chunk of Arashi’s variety shows. Way more than I’d seen before. And that’s where the attachment formed. I now consider Arashi to be on the same level as Morning Musume. And if you don’t know anything about me just know that that is HUGE. I’ve said a few times before if I could only listen to 2 idol groups for the rest of my life I would be completely satisfied with Arashi and Morning Musume being them.

Koki

KAT-TUN, oh KAT-TUN where do I even start about? Did you know they actually lost a member? Imagine that? Oh, it was Tanaka Koki, totally not a big deal at all. Except this was the absolute worst thing to happened to KAT-TUN ever. This was the most devastating lose that Johnny’s has experienced since I became a fan. Who cares if Eggplant, dead fish eyes, poison tongue, and smoke stacks left or where fired from their groups. They all stayed within the agency. Except for chimney but hey we still have his brother who was obviously the real golden boy within the Morimoto brothers. This is Koki we’re talking about. Koki, my beloved Koki. Also known as Tanaka the absolute only reason I’ve ever listened to or cared about KAT-TUN in the slightest Koki. This is a gigantic heartbreak. Koki was one of my favorite Johnny’s members of all time. 

And I’ll say it when he was officially fired I did cry. Not full water works. More like I teared up and maybe had a Crybaby moment. (Remember cause he could only cry one tear? No? Go watch the movie then.) It all started with me finding his newest penis pictures released scandal hilarious. Of course right after that legions of fans were whining that this meant the end for him. And with my usual flippant attitude I went, “Nah, that’ll never happen.” Well, someone please remind me to never say that because I’ve never been right about anything ever. (Except calling that Akanishi Jin was leaving KAT-TUN and Arihara Kanna was getting the boot from C-ute)

His firing hit me like a ton of bricks. So, I’m at this weird moment where I have absolutely no reason to listen to KAT-TUN anymore. As you’ll recall I said the same thing about NEWS when Ryo and Yamapi left. But I can honestly say that this time feels different. With NEWS I loved NEWS as a whole first and Ryo second. With KAT-TUN I loved Koki first and KAT-TUN second. So, I don’t know anymore. Hearing his rap cut from the recent episode of Music Station hurt. A lot.

HeySayJUMP

I actually don’t really have anything important to say about the other Johnny’s groups other than: NEWS’ Seven Colors is mediocre and release a new single already! And Hey! Say! JUMP is finally getting a new single, and my beloved Keito actually has a line. Stop the world.

AKB48 and sister groups:

AKB48

I’m gonna be honest with you if I’m not blogging about these groups I don’t pay attention to them that often on my own. I blog about them 90% for my dear readers. As I’ve said 100 times now. However, I do admit I’ve become increasingly addicted to Kitagawa Kenji for the past couple of months. I always thought I just liked SKE48 more than AKB48. But I’ve come to the conclusion that every other group is just better than AKB48. I’m sorry but AKB48 is too used sitting on the female idol throne that they don’t even try anymore musically. It’s SKE48 and NMB48 that have the interesting and fun songs now. Since they are working hard to forge their own name and get out of AKB48’s shadows.

Other idol groups:

Dream5

I have to admit I find it pretty difficult to keep up with the other groups I follow if I’m not blogging about them. Usually I’d have to make sure I checked up on them frequently so I could immediately make a post for my lovely readers. But left on my own I don’t find out about new singles until the PV is out. And I don’t find out about new PVs until about a week or two after they were released. Which is not really good.

MomoCLo

So how do I feel about some of these groups? I’m glad you asked. Momoiro Clover Z is back to impressing me. Coming off of their pretty disappointed 5th Dimension album, their newest single Gounn blew me away. I am in love with absolutely everything about SUPER GiRLS newest singles. I think the songs they chose to cover were perfect, and I of course love that my beloved Ami got her own solo. 

Fudanjuku

Surprisingly I’ve been pretty addicted to Dream5. If you recall before I stopped blogging I said how I discovered 3 new idol groups to love, Dream5 being one of them. Well I am absolutely enamored by them. Their music is fun, upbeat, energetic, and happy. I feel completely at ease and in high spirits just listening to them. Hibi Mikoto has become my favorite member because of her adorable voice and her adorable face. She kind of looks like a mouse, but in a cute way. Fudanjuku has become another one of the new groups that I have been following pretty closely. Danso Revolution has be come one of my favorite songs lately. And I am still having confusing and conflicting feels about Seto Kouki.

So, that’s very quickly my thoughts and feelings on some things. So, what’s o come you ask? Well you can still look forward to the same PV reviews, news pieces, over analyzations, and thought out blog entries you’ve come to love and expect from JM over the years. You can also look forward to my December staples, my idol Christmas picspam and my end of the year countdown. This year may be different, but keep in mind I make no promise. Someone on twitter suggested I do a top 100 singles countdown.

IdolSongs

Since there are close to 100 idol singles of groups that I follow released this year. Let’s see if I’m crazy enough to take the challenge.

I also had a good rant about Sakurai Sho and Johnny’s marriage on twitter. I feel like I can expand that a bit and make it into a really thought out blog post. So, if you’ve read the main points already on twitter I’m sorry. But if you haven’t read it yet, come on man don’t seek it out and spoil it for yourself.

Kisumai’s PV never fails to make me smile

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A few months ago the full PVs for Kis-My-Ft2’s new double A-side single KI.SU.U.MA.I ~Kiss Your Mind~ / S.O.S (Smile On Smile) were released. It’s a lot late, I know. I apologize. But I’ll find a happy medium in blogging again.

The S.O.S PV again took top priority because one of my lovely readers asked me when I was going to review it, so I know they’ve been waiting and looking forward to this.

After watching this PV and following their releases all I can say is, “What are you doing to me Kisumai?” I’m a super casual fan of Kisumai and I always planned on it staying that way. Honestly, because of the same reason I used too be casual with KAT-TUN, and that’s because their singles are great, but they could’t seem to pull it together and make a decent album. KAT-TUN’s albums got increasingly better after Jin left, but I’m not sure sure about Kisumai. I say that because right now I’m only going on Kis-My-1st because I have not had a chance to listen to Ikuze Good yet.

But lately Kisumai has like been begging me to become a bigger fan of them. Enticing me with singles released so soon after each other, double A-sides, a DVD, album, and single all released on the same day. I have to say looking from my stagnant Hey! Say! JUMP and NEWS fandom, the Kisumai fandom looks shiny and fun. Now, all they need is someone to consistently sub their variety shows and I’m sold.

Now, that was way off subject, but important nonetheless. The PV is also being me to become a bigger fan. It is just incredibly charming. Everything about it is just fun. It has the same flare as the Unmei Girl PV in the sense that it’s a relatively simple PV that’s enhanced by the members themselves.

I have to give the editors of this PV props they made a CG PV that actually looks good. Most of the time CG PVs seem to have such a low budget that they can’t afford the good CG and instead use really awful cheap looking CG that brings down the entire PV. But it seems like Kisumai spent a decent amount of money on this PV and it completely shows with the quality of the CG.

Everyone who makes idol PV should take note of this PV because this is how CG idol PVs should be made. At first glance the PV looks boring because it’s set it what can only be described as a futuristic town completely made of white. But once the abstract/ pop art looking graffiti flashes across the screen it immediately makes sense why they went for such a subdued backdrop. I think it was such a smart idea for them to have 3D graffiti and to have their movements paint even more graphics. It really brightens things up without being too much and overpowering the entire PV. It’s extremely eye catching and and really adds a fun and cutesy element to the PV. I have to say I’m a sucker for happy-go-lucky idol PVs, so I really prefer when Kisumai is being cute and slightly childish vs when they try to be mature and sexy and release heavy rock music. But that’s just my opinion.

The other thing I absolutely love about this PV is even if there wasn’t any pop art graffiti this PV can stand alone with any of it. And that really speaks volumes for the PV itself. That they graphics are completely enhancing the PV and aren’t being used to dress up an otherwise predictable PV. The guys are completely charming and effervescent in this PV and are as equally bright and vivid as the PV itself. The guys are just being so carefree, energetic, and just really natural. There’s a real playful element where the guys are chasing each other, randomly invading each others solo shots, and always being extremely enthusiastic. Whether it’s during the dance or just running in place somewhere in the distance.

And another big plus for this video is we actually get to see the other 4 members quite a bit! It’s nowhere near the screen time they deserve, but it’s leaps and bounds ahead of the attention they usually get. It’s not a perfect situation, but maybe just maybe, this means management is finally opening their eyes and is going to start using the other guys more. Maybe an evenly distributed song and PV is closer than we think. Despite Tama being my favorite member I’d be perfectly ok with seeing him less and seeing more of, say, the always exuberant Miyata.

Aside being in love with this PV, and I am in love with it, absolutely in love with it, I also consider it to be one of the best PVs of 2013 so far. And I honestly can’t see many PVs topping it. However, there is one scene I just don’t like at all, and it’s the scenes where they are dancing in front of the earth. And I don’t like it because it’s the one time in the PV you’re painfully aware that you’re watching a CG PV. The CG is just such a poor quality it doesn’t fit with the rest of the PV. And besides that, dancing it front of the Earth with rainbow colors flashing around it reminds me 100% of Berryz Koubou’s Ryuusei Boy PV.

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Conveyor belt Kisumai.

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This dance is a little too simple for my taste.

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Graffiti try not to be so obnoxious.

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Taisuke looking as cute as ever.

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Now this is the perfect amount of graffiti. And I love how it’s also on the billboard.

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How adorable.

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Is there really anyone more adorable than Tama?

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Still this dance. Not good.

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Nice ascot there.

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Cutie.

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This is pretty reminiscent of Ryuusei Boy.

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Don’t you think?

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Adorable.

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Love these bouncing smiles.

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This PV makes walking on that conveyor belt look so easy, but during the PV making they fell down like 10 times.

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Oh Miyacchi.

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Come on Miyata go away, you’re getting in the way of Hiro’s usual 8 hours of screen time.

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Sometimes Hiro is so close to being cute, but then they are times like this where he looks like a troll.

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Senga’s quite a scene stealer, I barely noticed Taisuke here.

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But then the next second it’s as if no one exists but Taisuke.

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Wait a minute, are Tama’s eyes two different colors? I’ll have a kinship with him times 1,000 if we both have heterochromia iridum!

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I really wish we could see the pop art font in the background better.

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This forced perspective is really cool. Reminds me of the forced perspective things Mini Moni did on Ayu ready.

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It looks like Senga is going to fall.

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Get back under your bridge Hiro.

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Omg Miyata.

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Love all the different fonts.

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Such a cutie.

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I love the effect under their steps.

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It’s so cool how the futuristic world is literally crumbling away to form the new set.

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Now this really reminds me of Ryuusei Boy.

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Kind of a similar feel.

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Just when their outfits almost matched they had to find a way to make sure they didn’t.

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I love that the smiley faces are in the sky.

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KAT-TUN – Face To Face PV preview

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The short version for KAT-TUN’s upcoming new single, Face To Face, was recently released. I wish I could say something snazzy like this is the first peek of the PV us fan are getting, but sadly it’s not. And even shorter PV preview was released a few days ago, but I never got around to making the post about it so, my bad. If you don’t know already, Face to Face is being used as the theme for Kamenashi Kazuya’s new movie Ore Ore. Which, on an irrelevant note, I’m actually really looking forward to seeing.

After watching the short version of the PV I am completely impressed at how well made  and seemingly expensive it looks. Even if the PV is cheaply made it is incredibly creative. Probably one of the boldest and original PVs KAT-TUN has really ever released. It’s certainly leaps and bounds above the sorry excuse for a PV that was the Expose PV. And this is really about all you’ll get out of my about the PV until the full version comes out and I make my review for it. Because why would you even bother reading that if I gave all my opinions about it now?

Moving away now from the quality opinions and onto more shallow ones. I’d like to say that my god the guys look gorgeous. They look absolutely perfect in those black and burgundy outfits. And is it just me or has Taguchi been looking absolutely delictable lately? All of this recent magazine spreads have made me look at him in a whole new light. And of course I have to talk about my baby Koki. Koki you’re gorgeous and all, but dear god cut you’re hair. You’re long overdue for a haircut. Or at least wear it in that pulled back hairstyle you’ve been doing lately that looks 100 times better. Also, I thought Koki was wearing a skirt in this PV. I was about to say, “Are you doing your best Massu impression?” But then I realized it’s not a skirt at all, it’s just his shirt is about 2 feet too long.

Also, am I the only one who wished they were wearing those scruffy pirate outfits from their Entag commercial? Seems like such a wasted opportunity.

Come on a release a new single already Hey! Say! JUMP

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I think I speak for the entire fandom when I say, “what’s going on with Hey! Say! JUMP?” I mean seriously. Unless you’re a new Hey! Say! JUMP fan you’re probably aware of the fact that Hey! Say! JUMP haven’t released a new single in over a year. The last single they released was Super Delicate on February 22, 2012. Well, even if you’re a new fan you’re probably painfully aware of this. But you probably won’t know the anger and overall annoyance that comes along with not releasing anything in over a year.

Now, this isn’t exactly a new thing for Hey! Say! JUMP. I became a fan of them back in 2009 during their first unexpected, and for no good reason, year long hiatus. Back then I honestly did not care. Since I was a new fan the hiatus gave me enough time to catch up to the group. Watch concerts, memorize the members names, get a feel for their personalities, and get really familiar with the music. It was fun. It’s obviously easier to catch up on an idol group in their downtime, but it’s honestly just as easy to catch up with them in real time. Mostly because most idol groups don’t have year long hiatuses. Do you realize that even NEWS didn’t miss a year in between release? Well, of course right before the members left they did. But before that they didn’t.

Another reason I was content with the hiatus was because despite not having physical releases they were still making new music. They would perform them on Shounen Club or they were songs used as volleyball support ssongs. If you recall they had so many unreleased songs that when they released their first album fans were saying that there was going to be a BEST and 7 version of the album with a rumored track list just because they had enough songs for it. I still think that would have been a brilliant idea, and will never understand why they didn’t do that.

They also have so many unreleased songs that they are still including them in their recent releases. And they have more unreleased group songs like Shin-Gi-Tai and Tobira no Mukou. As well as pretty ancient Hey! Say! 7 songs Brave Story, Nounai Dance, and Kawaii Kimi no Koto da Mono. I actually think all of Hey! Say! BEST’s stuff was released. But I could be wrong.

Also, do you remember Hey! say! JUMP’s Tengoku concerts from 2009? You know the concerts that didn’t get a DVD release. Which I am STILL not over to be honest. And the reason that I, and no doubt JUMP fans everywhere, were angry about this is because this was the concert where nearly every member of JUMP got a special solo. Even Keito and Inoo. Poor Ryutaro only got a dance solo. Chinen and Yuri had a duet. But that’s fine because my beloved Yuto still has his unreleased Uruwashi no Bad Girl solo. So, there’s 8 unreleased songs still! It’s 8 because Ryosuke sang Asia no Yoru. That’s pretty much an entire album worth of unreleased solos. That honestly will probably never get released or see the light of day again. Because they haven’t been preformed since those Tengoku concerts back in 2009.

During this hiatus we’ve gotten nothing really. Ok, we did get a new album and a concert DVD. But I guess I’m a greedy fan because that’s not enough. But you know what, no, that’s not greedy at all. It’s not unreasonable at all to want a new single in a year. I know that male idols don’t match the pace of female idols that release about 4 singles a year. But male idols usually don’t go more than 7 months between a single release without a reason. Hey! Say! JUMP doesn’t have one.

Now, this entire impatient ranting post was fueled by the fact that Hey! Say! JUMP do have a new song. It’s called Come On A MY House and they’ve been promoting it a lot lately.

In their new Vermont Curry commercial.

On School Kakumei.

News reports even showed them performing it at the Johnny’s World Thanksgiving concert.

But I’m angry because despite this, there has been no confirmation about this being a new single. Even though all of these promos started airing on March 30th or 31st. Which was obviously 4 or 5 days ago.

However, I do think that this song isn’t going to be an A-side. I’m willing to bet it’s the B-side to some upcoming new single. Because 1. if it was an A-side they would have made it perfectly clear by now and would have announced it as such during the Johnny’s World Thanksgiving concert. 2. I think they’re gonna pull a Kagayaki Days. Remember how Hey! Say! 7’s Kagayaki Days was used in Hey! Say! 7’s Lotte Fruitio commercial before Hitomi no Screen was even announced? So, it makes sense to do it with this song also. And 3. I don’t want it to be an A-side.

No, seriously I don’t. The song just isn’t good enough. It’s cute and idoly, and a little bit catchy I suppose. But it’s a little more immature than I expected. Coming off of their really mature last single, Super Delicate, this just doesn’t make sense to me. It’s more suited for a fun B-side.

I’m honestly kind of fed up with how they have been treating JUMP. It’s pretty obvious they never really knew what to do with JUMP once they started getting older. It was easy for them to be the young, cutesy, childish group when they were that age, but once they started getting older they honestly didn’t know what to do. They started giving them more mature music, but quickly took that back and gave them cutesy music again. It’s obvious whoever handles JUMP within Johnny’s doesn’t really know what they’re doing. I certainly hope it’s not Julie because she’s can’t even handle JUMP properly, yet she’s set to take over the whole company.

I’m sick of Johnny’s still treating Hey! Say! JUMP as the youngest group. They’re not anymore, Sexy Zone is. It’s really easy to have a song that’s cutesy and fun with a fresh vibe without it being too silly and childish. Arashi and NEWS have always done that beautifully.

I guess I’m just waiting for Johnny’s to get it together and give Hey! Say! JUMP a clear path. And at least pretend they know what they’re doing. I didn’t just spend $50 on a Hey! Say! JUMP calendar that’s only really worth $20 at most, for them to just dissolve as a group.

Tegomass’ new PV is more of the same

TegomassSayonaraNiSayonara

A little over 2 weeks ago the full PV for Tegomass’ new single, Sayonara ni Sayonara was released.

Hey, look at this guys, I’m finally catching up and reviewing PVs that are hardly old now. See, I promised that if you just bared with me I’d get to do all the recent PV reviews. Well, if you follow me on twitter you’d know that’s what I promised. And if you don’t follow me on twitter, actually why don’t you follow me on twitter yet? I’m joking of course. Well, half joking.

I have never really been a big fan of Tegomass, mostly because Tegoshi has always been my least favorite NEWS member. While the whole 2 members leaving situation made me realize that Tegoshi might actually be an ok guy sometimes, I still don’t care for him. And the reason I don’t like Tegomass is because it’s a sub group made up of arguably the most talented singers in NEWS. (I say arguably because it’s a stone-cold fact that Tegoashi always has been the best singer of NEWS, expect for when Kusano was almost overtaking him. But it’s debatable if Massu is second best. Sometimes it feels like Kei-chan and sometimes it feels like Massu) Because they are the best singers they pretty much only get slow songs or ballads to showcase their voices, which I find extremely boring. And since they release ballads it doesn’t make for an eventful PV. And now we’ve come full circle and you can see the opinion I have about the PV.

The PV actually isn’t awful, but it’s not bad either. It’s actually the quality I’ve come to expect from Tegomass. And it’s about as interesting as they could make it since it is such a slow song. They actually do have a clear concept for this PV and it’s actually not a bad idea. 8/10 of this PV consists of Tegomass just sitting by a window as the seasons change. While I did think that was pretty boring just by the PV preview, after seeing the full PV I think it’s actually pretty cool. A year passes by Tegomass, it goes from spring to winter. While the seasons pass it tracks a relationship. Meeting in spring, starting to date in the summer, breaking up in the fall, meeting someone new in the winter, and finally returning to spring where a new love blossoms.

I think those are really really cute scenes. So cute that to me they are really the only scenes the PV needs, and Tegomass’ parts seem kind of unnecessary to me. They spend the entire PV looking out the window at this girl. Sure you could say it’s them kindly watching over her love, but it seems kind of stalkerish to me. Or voyeuristic at the very least. The only part of Tegoshi’s and Massu’s scenes that I do like is that the room inside’s lighting changes to correspond with the new season. And that’s honestly about it.

So, I guess I’m really on the fence about this PV. While I do appreciate the storyline of the girl, I’m left wanting more from Tegomass’ parts. I think if this tracked Tegoshi’s and Massu’s relationships with girls it would have really put this PV over the top for me. You just don’t get that legitimate emotional feel from them just watching a stranger. It would have been so much better for them to look back on their past year.

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This is actually really pretty.

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It’s super important to see what’s on the table.

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Massu looks super cute.

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Couldn’t they even have the globe showing Japan? Lol.

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Tegoshi is just not appealing to me in the slightest.

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Tegoshi always tries way too hard to be cute.

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I love how this girl is walking past the window and Tegomass is just doing their own thing and not caring at all.

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No thanks.

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Can someone please explain to me why Massu is wearing two pairs of pants?

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Too cute for words.

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Really wish I knew what this said. But there’s a smiley face and stars, so it has to be good.

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Creepy window Massu sees all.

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Love Massu’s bright smile.

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Tegoshi is wearing a white shirt and an ascot. He looks ridiculous. He literally looks like a French chef.

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The texts are still looking pretty positive.

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Cutie.

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Nice sunflowers.SayonaraNiSayonara18

Massu. *O*

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Gorgeous.

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Love her outfit.

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Aww poor her.

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Good riddance, who wants to go to an opera anyway?

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Another cute outfit.

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Tegoshi is way too into watching her.

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Massu too, for that matter.

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I wonder what’s in the bag.

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Oh, it’s an ugly scarf.

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And it’s spring again.

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What’s on Massu’s ears? They look like earrings, but they aren’t on his lobe. 

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And a happy ending.

This is Unmei Girl

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Since Kisumai’s last single was a double A-side it means I have to review both PVs. This time it’s the Unmei Girl PV. (Also, I don’t know if anyone but myself appreciates the H!P and Johnny’s mixed pun.)

I do admit, in my opinion, Unmei Girl is far better than My Resistance. The song is that happy, bubble gum pop, just cutesy idol music that I love. A lot catchier and fun than the serious number that My Resistance was. And I actually regret not reviewing the PV sooner because, surprisingly, I actually like it. I was just immediately turned off after I saw nothing but roller skates in the preview. I think by now I’ve made it obvious how I feel about them.

But after watching the PV I love it. I honestly really love this PV. It’s like 4 minutes of pure cutesy idol fun. Just everything about this PV works for me. There’s nothing spectacular about the way that the PV is made, it’s actually very cheap. Only 2 sets, only one outfit, and still severely unfair screen time distribution. But I love it because both sets are just so bright and vivid. And they are decorated really well, and there’s so much going on in each set that your eyes are drawn to it. It’s just so cute and eye-catching that it makes the entire PV fun and interesting.

But what really wins me over with this PV is how Kisumai themselves are acting. Since this is such an upbeat and fun song, the guys really went for it. The dance is really cute and face paced to match the song. And to further match the song the guys took full advantage and every close-up shot, actually every time they are singing, is accompanied with a cutesy idol pose. And that really made the entire so much fun to watch. There’s literally not a frame in the entire PV where something fun isn’t going on.

I also really love the scenes where they are just being weird and jumping over members, or picking members up. They are hands down my favorite parts of the entire PV. At one point they are just roller skating in a giant circle, but they somehow managed to make that look interesting. This PV is so much fun to watch from start to finish.

I’m just such a gigantic fan of this PV. I love those moments where you’re expecting the PV to bad because of how cheap it is, but then you’re pleasantly surprised by how amazing it actually is. I love PVs that are enjoyable to watch solely because of how charming the idols themselves are rather than relying on a fancy set or theme. While I do appreciate when a PV is high quality, I still love PVs that are cheap but cute. It’s just the PVs that are both cheap and boring that I can’t stand.

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Roller skates and I don’t mix.

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Ok, I get it, they’re roller skates. I don’t need to see them from every single angle.

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Tama’s such a cutie.

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Taisuke looking as good as ever.

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I absolutely love this dance.

UnmeiGirl6Another idol group holding up their pink for girl. Luckily one of my lovely readers finally explained the reason for this.

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Nice jacket swing.

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Adorable.

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Look at all the random things in the set. A circle that looks like Jupiter, a carousel horse, a random deer head, etc. 

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Look how cute and idolly the whole PV is.

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So cute.

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Getting really sick of never seeing the other 4 members.

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Oh no, the more I see Hiro the more appealing he is. Probably because of how weird I find him personality wise. Lol. 

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Like he almost looks cute here.

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This is such a great set.

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It almost looks like Taisuke is intentionally blocking Nika. Lol.

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See it’s doing random things like this that make the PV even more fun.

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Sorry but Taisuke is gorgeous.

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And Tama is such a cutie.

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Lol.

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That’s an impressive jump.

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Hiro makes the best faces.

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*O*

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Awesome that they use a star as a segue scene

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Yes, dance around the almighty shoe. 

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They look cut while they do it though.

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Wow 2 scenes in the entire PV. Yup, that’s enough.

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I’m getting Junior colosseum flashbacks. Lol.

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I love this I l-o-v-e you part.

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Wink.

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Everyone’s into it but Yoko. And I love how Taisuke like fell into place. And lolz at Tama’s face.

Arashi’s new PV leaves me breathless

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Recently the full PVs for Arashi’s newest double A-side single, Calling / Breathless, was released. And since I’ve already reviewed Calling I’m bringing you dear readers, what I hope, is the anticipated second PV review.

After watching both PVs and listening to both songs, I can honestly say I’m a much bigger fan of Calling. Not to say that Breathless is a bad song, because it’s not, it’s actually a really great song. I think both songs could really stand on their own as singles and this single, was in my opinion, one of the best Arashi singles in a while. (Which is why this single is their highest selling weekly since A.RA.SHI. I’m so proud of my babies.)

Breathless is a much lighter song to compliment the heavy almost anime sounding song that is Calling. And they did pretty much the same things with the PVs. Calling is this fast-paced, vibrant, light flashing, more abstract PV. While Breathless is it’s sleeker counterpart.

This PV is a pretty standard dance shot and close-up PV. But the PV is still interesting and definitely worth a watch. First of all, the guys look absolutely delectable in all black. Especially Nino. Have you seen Nino in this PV? He looks just incredible in this PV. It’s a shame he’s ruined that all now and cut his beautiful hair to that ridiculous short cut for god knows what reason. And I actually don’t mind that this PV relies on and focuses so much on dancing because in my opinion Arashi are the best dancers and usually get the best dances in Johnny’s. Hey! Say! JUMP have been stepped way up to the plate with that lately, but nothing really compares to Arashi’s Crazy Moon ~Kimi wa Muteki~ or Love Situation dances. So, I absolutely love Arashi’s dancing in this PV. It’s fluid and seamless and has the incredible polished look that all of Arashi’s dances have. But what do you expect when MatsuJun makes the guys go over every small intricate detail of a dance until it is absolutely perfect.

The rest of the PV consists of just close-up shots. But I think they’ve even done a good job at that, they added some nice variety in the close-up shots so you don’t get bored. And because of that they have 3 separate close-ups: the one that’s shot on the dance set and is filmed while circling around them with the camera (I’m not a director I don’t know fancy camera technique names.) one with this like blurred metallic background, and my personal favorite ones with the indigo color. It’s actually a really cheap effect that actually looks cool. Arashi are just standing in front of the projector and having the weird DNA type image projected onto their face. I do think it’s a really cool effect, because not only does it give the guys themselves an indigo type color it also adds these sort of myssterious shadows all over their faces which really add a extra nice element to this already dark themed PV.

So, in the end I do like this PV. Is it the most impressive PV Arashi have ever released? Definitely not. But just the same it is a nice PV and has it’s certain charms. And its leaps above painfully simple PVs like Dear Snow or Hatenai Sora. The guys looks gorgeous, it’s overflowing with enough Nino for me to get more than my fill, the dancing is as impeccable as always, and it’s just an overall fun watch. I can’t really ask for more than that. I’m happy with the PV.

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Weird abstract DNA looking things in the beginning.

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This PV is Nino-centric already.

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Aiba’s looking good again.

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They should do more themes to Nino’s movies, I love that he’s the direct center of the dance.

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I never noticed how dark the dance scenes are. It’s a little hard to see at times.

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Nice outfit.

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Cutie.

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I guess this is the simple part of the dance. Lol.

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Nino. *O*

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A little intense there Aiba.

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Everyone’s face.

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I love how Sho air punches in nearly every PV he’s in.

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Adorable.

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The lighting makes this look a little creepy.

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Finally the dance is getting better.

Breathless16

Cool.

Breathless17

Nice jump.

Breathless18

Nice suit Ohno.

Breathless19

You know I hardly ever notice MatsJun in this PV.

Breathless20

Beyond cute.

Breathless21

Extreme close-up.

Breathless22

Adorable.

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Aiba’s really bringing his A-game in this PV.

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Scary Ohno.

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Aiba’s close-ups are the most interesting to watch.

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Ok, MatsuJun looks a little cute here.

Breathless27

More air punching Sho.

Breathless28

Geez.

Breathless29

Nino being the center of the dance again.

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Slightly disheveled hair.

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Nino baby.

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OMG it looks like the outside of the Cube! Why do I keep referencing a movie no one’s seen? XD

Kisumai’s PV is easy to resist

Kis-My-Ft2MyResistance

About a month ago Kis-My-Ft2’s both full PVs for their new double A-side single was released. And I was left unimpressed when the first of the two PV were released.

Now, I’ve waited so long to review the My Resistance PV half because the song hasn’t really grown on me despite hoping that it would. And the half, and the main reason, is because this video is nearly identical to NEWS’ Taiyou no Namida PV.

Ok, maybe identical is a strong word, but if you watch both PVs back to back you can’t deny the obvious similarities. Both PVs are filmed in the streets on a very dark and drab set. The main plot of both PVs is the members just sitting on steps or in front on doorways while singing. To make the My Resistance PV even more unoriginal Kis-My-Ft2 is also dancing in the rain in this PV. Which to me was an element that made the Taiyou no Namida PV cool and uniquely NEWS.
Kisumai’s PV does try to be a little bit different. For starters there is more going on in NEWS’s PV. THe Taiyou no Namida PV is filmed half indoors and half outdoors, while the My Resistance PV is filmed exclusively outside. Except for that one time Yokko is peaking outside one of the windows for 5 seconds. And the rain scenes are a little
different. Since NEWS’ song is called Taiyou no Namida there’s obvious more rain scenes than the My Resistance PV.

My Resistnace’s rain scene isn’t really the main focal point of the PV. Instead it only rains a bit and then shows the sky clearing and the buildings brightening up. Which is obviously to match what I am assuming is uplifting and positive lyrics. I guess it’s cool to have the PV say, stay positive since even though things are desperate and it seems the rain will never clear eventually it will.

Sappy inspiring meaning aside, I do not like this PV. Full stop this PV is a near carbon copy of NEWS’ Taiyou no Namida PV. So everything that I loved about that PV or thought was unique about that PV is ruined now because I’ve seen it already. The My Resistance PV is a cheap rip-off that can’t compete or compare to the original.

But even if these PV wasn’t so similar to a PV I’ve already seen before, it’s not impressive enough on it’s own. The entire PV is just them looking sad while sitting or standing, and then dancing for a bit. There’s also this weird scene where they all grasp these glowing necklaces. Which to be honest, I’m not so sure what they’re supposed to be about. All I know is after they grasp their necklaces, they gather together, and then it rains.

I’m actually really surprised with how boring this PV is. Kis-My-Ft2 usually makes good PVs. And if they PVs aren’t good they are expensive looking and you can tell they put actually effort into the PV. With the My Resistance PV it looks like they didn’t even try.

MyResistance

Nice streetlight. I don’t think they need to focus on it for 15 seconds though.

MyResistance2

This PV is boring already.

MyResistanc3

Tama’s a cutie though.

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Taisuke’s looking good too.

MyResistance5

There’s literally nothing to cap in this PV. Nothing is happening.

MyResistance6

At least dancing adds some variety.

MyResistance7

Except the dance itself is nothing that impressive.

MyResistance8

I guess the set itself is kind of nice.

MyResistance9

Wow 1:46 in the video and we finally see one of the other 4 members.

MyResistance10

I’m not exactly sure why Yokoo is hanging out the window.


MyResistance11

Oh apparently, so is Nika.

MyResistance12

Now that I get a better look at it, that’s a nice outfit.

MyResistance13

Cute. *O*

MyResistance14

What?

MyResistance15

Magic glowing necklace.

MyResistance16

It’s completely unfair, their jackets are so dark they almost blend right into the set.

MyResistance17

Wow Yoko’s jacket is crushed velvet. Nice.

MyResistance18

Cool.

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Taiyou no Namida.

MyResistance20

Best scenes of the entire PV.

MyResistance21

Tama’s face. Lolz.

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How pretty.

MyResistance23

Lol.

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Wink.

Yamapi – Que Sera Sera PV preview

YamashitaiTomohisa

The PV preview for Yamapi’s upcoming new single, Que Sera Sera, was recently released.

I have to say as someone who is, and has always been, only a casual fan of Yamapi whenever he releases something I never have high expectations for it. Not to say that I think his music is going to be terrible, but Yamapi has always had a mix of great music and terrible music. I just remain completely indifferent towards him. If his music is good that’s fine, and if it’s bad, well, that’s fine too. This is nothing new really while he was in NEWS I only payed attention to him for his looks. Even now I only watch performances and concerts because among all the Johnny’s he’s the one most comfortable with taking his shirt off. And I of course appreciate whatever little fanservice Johnny’s throws our way.

Well, enough about dead fish eyes himself, and more about this song and PV. I actually forgot to make a post about the preview of this song, so I’m going to do it now.

I’m actually really happy with the song. Since switching over to Warner Music his music as a whole has been getting increasingly better. Supergood, Superbad was forgettable, but some of the songs on Ero were almost too good to miss. And as for singles, I actually think Que Sera Sera might actually be my favorite single by him ever. Initially when I heard about this song it did cut like a knife at the still unhealed wounds of Aicle’s disbandment. But once I listened to the song I was actually really impressed.

It’s got a really interesting instrumental. That I’m not exactly sure how to describe it. It’s got this subtle dark and eerie Jrock sound to it that I absolutely love. Something that old school Ayabie or THE KIDDIE would release. Tell me it doesn’t sound like a  toned down version of Ayabie’s Cubic’ [L/R] ock mixed with like the THE KIDDIES’s The Black Side. Maybe even with a dash of Japanese Low-res Caramel Town mixed in for good measure. (Sorry for all the Jrock references in this post that my readers might not get. All the songs I mentioned are quality, so listen to them if your interest is peaked enough.)

After reading the translation I like how the song itself also has a slightly dark themed lyrics, but in a fun way. Kind of like the playfullness and dark undertones of Tommy Heavely6’s songs. Who I’m a gigantic fan of by the way. I’m just really impressed with the song overall.

Moving on to the PV, I’m equally impressed with it. For starters Yamapi looks gorgeous in it. A lot better than he’s looked in his previous Warner Music PVs. He’s wearing a rockish outfits that looks like something Daigo might wear. I think it’s the fingerless glove that makes my mind immediately go to Daigo.

The PV itself is just visually stunning. It’s got this dark fairytale theme going on with dancing mushrooms, people dressed as rabbits, and a real lion. I’m just really blown away by it. The PV is almost like a mix of Misono’s VS PV and Kyary’s Tsukema Tsukeru PV. It’s just a really cool PV so far.

Arashi’s new PV deserves a call of attention

ArashiCallingBreathless

Finally the full PVs for Arashi’s double A-side single, Calling / Breathless, have been released. But obvious I can only review one PV at once, and I decided to do my favorite of the two first. Which is Calling.

Now it maybe have taken me a few weeks to really appreciate how awesome the song is, but from the first PV preview I was instantly in love with this PV. And after seeing the full PV I am even more in love with this PV. There are a few more scenes that we didn’t see in the preview and I honestly wasn’t expecting because with PV previews, especially Arashi PV previews, what you see is what you get. But all of the scenes blend together perfectly to makes this kinda dark, kinda weird, and abstract looking PV. With just a dash of the randomness vibe from the Mada Minu Sekai E PV and the different color filters from the Face Down PV.

There are pretty much just 2 main sets for the PV. The best way to describe the first one is either distressed ad ripped up bed sheets, or old cut up pirate looking sails, attached to some random metal structure. And I really love this set because in my opinion because it’s artsy, abstract, and just plain weird looking. I also think really like that it’s being blown the entire time. The constantly flowing fabric adds another really small cool element to this PV

The other main set of this PV is what looks like a circular tunnel of lights. The different colored lights against the black background makes it look like Arashi is inside a giant neon sign. Which is awesome. It’s also an ingenious way to blatantly show all the lights that are needed to add such a high contrast to Arashi. This is also the background they use for the close-up shots. I think even the close-ups are done in such a smart way. It’s just Arashi standing right in front of the background being shot with almost a tube effect. Which makes it looks really interesting and unique. But it’s actually yet another way of making a cheap effect look more expensive and interesting. Arashi really is the master of making cheap PVs look good.

Another inexpensive way they make this PV look higher budget than it really is, is by using different camera filters. There’s literally 6 different filters used. The amber one, the blueish hued one, the high contrast light one, the clearer close-up shot one, the grungy sheet set one, and the black and white one. That’s all relatively inexpensive. But just by using different colors it makes the PV about 50% more interesting to watch. Because the PV is constantly changing it’s never boring. And when the music slows down towards the end of the song and it switches to the blueish looking camera filter it just firs perfectly for that part of the song. Even though Arashi is using basically the same exact filters they used for their Face Down PV, I don’t really mind.

These PV also has these random scenes where each member of Arashi is sitting in a chair and a bunch of men dressed in all black are trying to touch each member. Besides the homoerotic undertones of these scenes, which I approve of, I don’t really get what purpose they serve. They’re actually a little bit out of place.

Ok, wow, I’ve ranted way too much about this PV already, so I’m gonna end it by talking about one last thing, and that is, Oh my god everyone looks gorgeous! Like almost impossibly great. Like almost the best they’ve ever looked in PVs. So, “how is it possible these guys look this good at 30?” incredible. Even members I don’t really find attractive look absolutely amazing in this video. But of course, much like always, Nino and Sho win for looking the hottest in this PV.

Calling

Such an intense opening scene.

Calling2

I wish they would stop panning so quickly, I can barely make the stuff out.

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Nino. *O*

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Aiba looks so unexpectedly good in this PV. 

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Gorgeous Nino. I apologize in advance for how biased these caps are most likely going to be.

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Sho this hair and outfit are working for you.

Calling7

This set is really cool.

Calling8

Wow MatsuJun looks good.

Calling9

The best Aiba has ever looked. *O*

Calling10

Nino this hair is cute, why couldn’t you have kept it for a little while?

Calling11

Even Ohno doesn’t look that bad.

Calling12

Nice jacket.

Calling13

Actually nice outfits overall.

Calling14

Jun….

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What an odd pose. Lol.

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Cutie.

Calling17

Flawless jacket swing.

Calling18

Adorable Nino.

Calling19

Lookin’ good Sho.

Calling20

Why are you so perfect? 

Calling21

Wow Aiba.

Calling22

I don’t even know what’s going on here.

Calling23

MatsuJun looks like he’s sitting on a throne.

Calling24

He looks so good.

Calling26

Nino is so gorgeous.

Calling27

Can’t get over the undertones of this. 

Calling28

Such a cutie.

Calling29

Nice amber effect.

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A little reminiscent of Face Down though. 

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Gorgeous baby.

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Another nice filter.

ArashiFaceDown

But it was nice in Face Down too.

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Sho-kun. *O*

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No words.

Tegomass – Sayonara ni Sayonara PV Preview

Tegomass

The PV preview for Tegomass’ first single since the NEWS return, and their first single in 2 years, Sayonara ni Sayonara was released. 

Can I just say when I first heard Tegomass was going to continue making music I was a little confused. And honestly I’m still confused. How does it make sense to keep their little sub-group going? I understood the point of it when they were releasing stuff on NEWS’ downside. But now that Ryo and Yamapi are gone NEWS doesn’t have a down side! Now it’s Tegomass that will keep NEWS from releasing stuff, are you serious? I do realize that NEWS released  2 single in close proximity of each other, a best album, and a new DVD. So, technically that means they should be on a break right now. But I’m complaining  more about them doing this in the future. And what sense does it make to have 2 members actively releasing singles and the other half not doing anything? 

Kei-chan and Shige always got the bad side of the deal with NEWS because of how unpopular they are. They did basically nothing and always had to wait for Yamapi, Tegomass, and Kanjani8 to not be releasing something just so they could. And now that they’ve been through that ordeal and continue on with NEWS, they have to wait even more in the future. No wonder Shige went to law school and wrote 2 books. He most definitely has the time!

Remember the joke at NEWS’ Live Live Live concert that KoyaShige was going to release their debut single? Yeah, I actually wish that was true. Because let me tell you, the few album songs KoyaShige have are 100% better than practically any of Tegomass’ releases. 

Well, sorry about that little impromptu rant, I should get back to the topic at hand.

Since this is a 15 second Dwango commercial it is extremely hard to get a feel of the PV at all. Literally the only thing we see so far are the members sitting in a room looking at a women out the window. Also it’s raining cherry blossoms, Massu is wearing 2 pairs of pants, and Tegoshi still looks like a women.

There’s honestly nothing else I can really say about this PV, so look forward to my PV review of this song. Or maybe don’t because both the PV and song are so lackluster so far that it’s not going to really be a positive review.

Arashi – Breathless PV preview

Arashi

A PV preview for Arashi’s second A-side Breathless, off of their upcoming double A-side single  Calling / Breathless, was released. This song will be used as the theme for Ninomiya Kazunari’s new movie Platina Data.

When I first heard the preview to Calling I was a little under whelmed and said I was now looking forward to Breathless to see if it’s a better song. Now, ironically, I actually have gotten used to Calling and love it now, I can’t really say the same for Breathless. What I can hear of the song is just ok. Calling is a much bigger song and has a very distinct rock sound. While Breathless is a little slower. Somehow it’s a dance track but at the same time still slow paced. I don’t know how they even manged to do that, but they did. Hopefully it’s just cause the song needs to grow on me like Calling did.

I actually even like the Calling PV more than the Breathless PV. Obviously they are both just previews, and it’s hard to make that judgement just yet. But so far Calling seems to have way more going on. The only plus so far is that the guys are dressed in all black and look absolutely gorgeous. It’s even one of those rare occasions that even Aiba looks a little cute.

Despite the visual appeal of the guys, there’s not much going on. They’re dressed all in black and dancing on an all black set which reminds me a lot of the set they danced on in their Believe PV. So, far the PV focuses heavily on dancing which makes me think it’s gonna be another Lotus or Crazy Moon ~Kimi ni Muteki~ where the PV is mostly dancing with a little close-up or 3/4 dancing and a random room shot. In this preview you do see the guys in some sort of blue light over them. But since this is only a preview it’s impossible to tell how often those scene are going to be used in the full PV.

Shocking exposé of KAT-TUN’s expose

KAT-TUNExpose

A few weeks ago the full PV for KAT-TUN’s recent single, Expose, was released.

And that means I’ve bringing you another installment of “PVs I put off reviewing because they are far too boring.” This time it’s obviously KAT-TUN’s PV. Also, this obviously isn’t really an expose, but I couldn’t pass up making that pun.

Is it just me or are KAT-TUN’s PVs getting more and more boring? KAT-TUN seem to be releasing extremely cheap PVs, then once you can’t take it anymore they throw you a few decent PVs just so you won’t lose interest completely. But right after that it’s back to horrible cheap PVs. To me it seems that H!P PVs are so cheap because they don’t want to spend too much money on a PV for a single that’s not going to sell all that well. But with Johnny’s it seems they make cheap PVs because their singles do sell a lot, and they’re still going to sell the same no matter how cheap the PV is so they figure why make an expensive PV?

Now, as a pretty critical fan I don’t really like cheap PVs. Well, I don’t think anyone actually likes cheap PVs. But they’re obviously a non-issue for most people since they keep making them. Curse you domestic fans who don’t care about PV quality. And since I actually do care about PVs, I’m going to continue to rip this PV, and any other cheaply made PV, to shreds.

When I first watched this PV I almost couldn’t believe this what they think passed for a PV. Most of the PV is shot from overhead, which is extremely annoying. It’s kind of like the effect of you looking down at KAT-TUN from a telescope. So they either look like ants you can barely make out, or you can actually see them clearly but the angle makes them looked squished and terrible. Not only is that bad enough, but they are also standing in what can be compared to a cave. Because they are in almost complete blackness and standing on water. The black backdrop and only having light shine on the members makes them fade completely into the background.

Luckily, that cave looking set only lasts for about 1/4 of the PV and they do lighten things up a bit. However, that just means they take the same exact water set they are on and turn into a day time set. Also, don’t forget to add some CG fog and and a CG rippling water effect that looks so obviously fake. And half of this KAT-TUN PV consists of them just splashing around in water. I thought I was watching Morning Musume’s Shabondama PV for a second.

There’s also this intense minute long rain scene for absolutely no reason. Seriously, it serves no purpose at all in the PV other than adding another water related element. I guess it technically clears things up a bit, because right after that they’re standing in front of some giant wooden bird that they bored from Arashi’s Lotus PV.

What I find so funny about this PV is how intense the members look throughout it. As if this PV is more serious than them just splashing around in water.

EXpose

There’s nothing I like more than fog you can’t see through.

Expose2

No, no it’s not hard to see them at all.

Expose3

Are you serious right now?

Expose4

Well, at least you can see the splash clearly. They know what the fans want.

Expose5

Oh look it’s my beloved Koki, I wonder how he looks in the PV? Too bad I have no idea.

Expose6

At this point these are close-ups.

Expose7

Kokame shot. Sorry couldn’t resist.

Expose8

There’s no dance so that lets Taguchi do whatever that’s about in the back.

Expose9

Yeah splash that water around intensely. 

MorningMusumeShabondama

Because after all, all love is just soap bubbles.

Expose10

I’m sick of all the splashing already.

Expose11

Can’t stand that this is how close it gets.

Expose12

Well, this does make it easier to see. But I still don’t like it.

Expose13

Oh man, this PV is so intense.

Expose14

Taguchi’s been looking pretty cute lately. So, I’m sad that you can’t even see him clearly.

Expose15

Kame manages to look good from pretty much any angle.

Expose16

So, we can finally see them clearly, but now too much fake sun is blocking them. Why must you toy with me like this?

Expose17

That face.

Expose18

Why does it look like rain mixed with snow?

Expose19

So close to a clear shot.

Expose20

Now they’re just making it took bad on purpose.

Expose21

Ok, creepy wooden thing.

Expose22

Yeah, this is the face I’ve been waiting the entire PV to see.

Expose23

This too.

Expose24

Finally!

Expose25

So, it’s a bird.

ArashiLotus

Too bad Arashi’s already done that.

Expose26

I have admit, these scenes are pretty cool.

Expose27

Koki’s such a cutie.

The no dating rule and Johnny’s special treatment

MinegishiMinami

By now I’m sure everyone in the entire Japanese music fandom is aware of AKB48 member, Minegishi Minami’s, recent scandal. And if you’re not you must really be living under a rock because even Western media picked up the story. But if for some reason you’re still not aware of it, the shorthand is this: a tabloid magazine came out with pictures of Mii-chan leaving Shirahama Alan’s, a member of EXILE, house. Then the next day a video was uploaded to AKB48’s official youtube channel where she deeply apologized and shaved her head. Well, as close to a full shave as possible. And it was said how she was demoted down to Kenkyuusei level. The video has since been removed from the channel and Mii-chan even made her debut as a Kenkyuusei recently sporting a wig.

The whole situation has left a bad taste in my mouth. Mostly because I’ve always been on the fence on the no dating idol rule. On one hand it seems to be 1,000% sure that the girls have to sign some sort of morals clause in their contract. And it would seem even if we don’t like the no dating rule it probably voids their entire contract and therefore have every right to be fired. But on the other hand I’m also caught between what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. How is it fair that Johnny’s aren’t held to the same intense criticism and punishment that female idols are held to?

Now, the main argument is that Japan is a sexist and misogynistic country. And that is true, they got something like number 101 on the list of countries with the most rights. And the way the entertainment industry is run has nothing to do with how the entire country is run. In Japan it’s frowned upon for women to wear too revealing clothes in public. Then shouldn’t gravure idols as a whole not exist because it’s not an innocent enough profession? Shouldn’t they only be sold on the outskirts of town? And women in Japan usually leave their jobs to be full time housewives, but female celebrities don’t stop being celebrities to be a wife and mother.

And even if the entertainment industry was 100% the way Japan as a whole is does that mean we should just look the other way and go, “well that’s just how they do things in Japan?” And the answer to that is no. It’s 2013. Turning a blind eye only makes things stay the same. Maybe if more fans (domestic fans anyway) were outraged by this things would change. And it’s not like the entire country agrees with the way the Mii-chan situation is being handled. Japanese netizens gave their opinion about the situation and a bunch of them said, “It’s against human rights to do this,” or, “She didn’t do anything wrong,” or, “Does this make her fans happy?”

And in my opinion she didn’t really do anything wrong, but because she had the misfortune of being a female idol instead of a male idol she got the full brunt of this. And as awful as it sounds, she even made out better than a lot of female idols do. Even though she humiliated herself by groveling and shaving her head extremely short, she at least got to remain a member of the group. Whether she’s a Kenkyuusei or not. A lot of other female idols have had their careers destroyed just by having boyfriends.

So, what happens if you’re a Johnny’s idol? Or what about the scandals that have effected both male and female idols? If you look at the scandal involving A.B.C-Z member Hashimoto Ryosuke and C-ute member Arihara Kana and the scandal involving Hey! Say! JUMP member Takaki Yuya and 9nine member Kato Rubi.

JEScandal5

If you follow any of those groups you’ll know exactly what happened. Rubi’s and Kanna’s departures from their groups were both a direct effect of their scandals. You can say, “Well, actually Kanna’s wasn’t.” Really? Really? Do you really believe she honestly left because of a bunion? And not because right before she went on hiatus fans booed her at the Edo no Temari Uta II handshake event?

How about an update on Ryosuke or Takaki. Obviously absolutely nothing happened to them. Do you remember hearing Johnny’s even mentioning either rumor? Do you remember either member even getting remotely punished? Ryosuke was just a Junior, and he was only recently added to the already established A.B.C. Junior group from JJ Express. And this scandal happened a month before Hey! Say! JUMP’s debut single went on sale. They could have easily gotten rid of both guys without much of an impact to either group. But they didn’t. They didn’t even pretend to care.

With that it must seem like Johnny’s are actually allowed to date. But au contraire mon frere, they actually aren’t. Johnny’s still have a no dating rule. The only upside to their no dating rule is that once they reach a certain age it no longer applies to them. I always thought 30 was the age, but someone else said it was 25. So now I’m not 100% sure of the age. But let’s just split the difference and say it’s between the age of 25 and 30. Back when Takaki had his scandal he was 17, and during Ryosuke’s scandal he was 16. Which means they broke the rules. And yet nothing happened to them. Every single Johnny’s member has been involved in dating scandals before they were allowed to date. So why didn’t anything happen to them? The only rule they seem to be strict on is the marriage ban. Which is ridiculous. Who cares if you can’t get married if you can still date?

Let’s now look at some Johnny’s scandals.

JEScandal

 

JEScandal2

 

JEScandal3

 

JEScandal4

When has a female scandal ever been anywhere near this bad really? Besides Sashihara Rino’s boob flashing and that one time someone was accused of compensated dating.

But these are just the scandals that are seen in photos. What about what the tabloids that just write about Johnny’s? It’s been written that Nishikido Ryo bite some chick in a club, kicked a girl out of a cab because she refused to sleep with him, and that he frequents pink salons. They wrote that Ninomiya Kazunari was a sexual powerhouse. There was a rumor that Yamashita Tomohisa had a sex tape. (Not gonna lie, I kinda wish that one was true.) And just recently there was a rumor that Matsumoto Jun goes to a club lines up all the girls that want to kiss him and picks one. And these are just the ones I remember. Can you imagine what would happen if any female idol had any of this written about them? Yet Johnny’s get this kind of stuff written about them practically every week. They are constantly in tabloids with a new girl. Johnny’s have dated so many girls that the Johnny’s fandom had to make a chart to keep up with it.

Johnny'sChart

It seems like the only time that Johnny’s ever get punished is when they break the law. Morimoto Ryutaro was removed from Hey! Say! JUMP after underage smoking, and NEWS members Uchi Hiroki and Kusano Hironori were demoted to below Junior status for underage drinking. However, if you’re Kusanagi Tsuyoshi you can get arrested for running around naked while you’re drunk and have nothing happen to you.

Hey, maybe the unfairness is all because of the different fans that male and female idols have. I mean, female idols are marketed as pure and innocent. And wota make up a huge part of their sales, while male idols don’t have wota. I’m also going to shoot down that logic right now.

Both male and female idol groups have crazy and obsessive fans. It comes along with the idol territory. Besides wota flipping out and breaking CDs, burning photos, ripping up photos, and completely not supporting a girl anymore because of a boyfriend scandal, I actually think wota are a little more tame in comparison  For the most part the wota are very respectful. Sure, they stole I think Tokunaga Chinami’s (It was an H!P Kid member I just can’t remember which one exactly anymore.) phone. But for the most part they seem to leave the girls alone. Johnny’s fans might have the unwritten fandom rule or not approaching them on the train, and if you see them on the train move to another part. But that’s pretty much as respectful as some fans get.

Johnny’s have some really crazy fans, so crazy that they even have a name for them, and that name is Yarakashi. Yarakashi are basically really aggressive fans with extremely bad manners. They’ll attack groups they don’t like, yell over MCs at concerts, allegedly broke Nino’s thumb, etc. They apparently held up signs during KAT-TUN concerts telling Kame to die. However, the Yarakashi I’m most familiar with are the group of them that were obsessed with Hey! Say! JUMP. They were known as the Heisei Shojo Group.

HeiseiShojoGroup

These girls were so obsessed with Hey! say! JUMP that they would refer to themselves with their favorite member’s last name. Such as Nakajima Mare or Yamada Erika. They used to do things like camp outside the member’s schools and homes. One of the members even claimed to have forced Ryosuke to kiss her. They gathered at the Scrap Teacher set and yelled things at Chinen such as “Quite JUMP,” “You’re disgusting,” and, “Stop pretending to be a girl.” There was also that one time where a stalker stole Ryutaro’s phone. There was even a completely unrelated story about two Johnny’s fans getting arrested after they beat up, cut the hair of, and stole money from junior high school girl because she was allegedly texting a Johnny’s Junior member. They did all of this because they said the girl broke fan rules of exchanging information with Johnny’s talents on online message boards open to the public.

So, to think that Johnny’s is more lenient because female fans don’t care as much as male fans do is just ridiculous. I’d say dedicated Johnny’s fans are just as obsessed as hardcore wota.

I guess the whole point of this post is to show how unfair and sexist the idol industry truly is. And to some extent how ridiculous the no dating rule is. If they are going to have the no dating rule, can’t female agencies adapt the one Johnny’s has that lets you date at a certain age? Or if they refuse to that, then at least punish all idols the same way. To hold Johnny’s idols on a pedestal above female idols is just appalling, sexist, and just plain wrong. I’m a giant female idol and Johnny’s fan, and it’s obvious even to me that something has to be done about this. Do I think it’s going to happen any time soon? Sadly, I don’t. In a perfect world it would, but this is reality. And what us international fans think about this hardly matters on the grand scheme of things. But I hope domestic fans will stand up to this someday and make some real change happen.

Also, I welcome anyone else’s opinions about this and would love a comment to hear your thoughts. I know many people might not agree 100% with this post.

Arashi – Calling PV preview

Arashi

Recently the PV preview for Calling, the first song off of Arashi’s upcoming double A-side single Calling/Breathless, was released.

I’m actually really impressed with the PV. It’s one of those times where a director turned a relatively cheap PV into something you actually want to watch. Which has been Arashi’s PV format since forever. But I really like the PV so far. The weird sets and and filter effects make this PV look like a mix between their Face Down PV and their Mada Minu Mekai E PV. I mean, at one point the use the same exact grungy blue filter effect that is used in face down.

But I love that the PV is has a nice contrast between dark scenes and vibrant scenes, much like Face Down. But the PV itself is more elaborate. There are a number of different sets, outfits, shots, and close-ups. There’s just enough going on that you’re not bored, and not too much that it takes away from the members themselves.

Also did I mention how delicious the members look in his PV? Especially Sho and Nino. It looks like Nino is back to his black hair. I had no idea, but it looks fantastic.

Arashi – Calling preview

The preview Arashi’s Calling, from their upcoming double A-side single Calling / Breathless, has been released. Calling is currently being used as the theme to Aiba’s drama Last Hope.

When I first listened to this song I instantly knew that I just did not like it. But the more I listen to it the more my dislike turns to being more on the fence about it. Mostly because of the complete disconnect the first and second part of the song has. The verse and bridge sound more like they’re suited to be a theme for an anime rather than a drama. And I just don’t really care for when Arashi does rock songs. Their more theatrical ones like Truth or Lotus are fine, but I’m just not a big fan of ones like Pikanchi or Pikanchi Double. Though, I do admit the song isn’t completely awful when it slows down during Aiba’s solos and the parts immediately after that.

The only part of the song that I actually do like is the chorus. Mostly because it doesn’t sound anything like the rest of the song, and actually doesn’t really sound like it belongs in the song for that reason. But it’s probably also because it’s really catchy and sounds everything else Arashi releases. Now, more of the same is probably boring to most people but not really me. I have a very distinct sound of songs that I like.

I would love to say let’s just look forward to Breathless being better. But since Calling is so upbeat, it’s like 90% certian that Breathless will be slow paced to kind of counter Calling.

KAT-TUN – Expose preview

About a week ago the radio rip for KAT-TUN’s upcoming single, Expose, was released.

I actually meant to make this blog post sooner, but it actually slipped my mind. So, I’m sorry about that. But there’s no reason to dwell on that now.

I am really impressed with not only this song, but KAT-TUN lately. They’ve really been stepping it up lately. These last 3 singles have been incredible and each new single is better than the last one. And this single is honestly KAT-TUN’s best single to date. I know I just said that about To The Limit, but I wasn’t expecting this single at all.

The song is just really powerful and has a a nice hard rock instrumental. It also has a nice toughness to the way that it’s song. Especially the chorus. I think they’re literally saying wake up beating. I also love really love the way that they had the very last note, it’s the best part of the entire song.