Irie Saaya in Playboy

Filed in Cult of Pop 1.0

As always, when it comes to Irie Saaya news, Idolizing St. Anna is the source: the Japanese edition of Playboy ran an interview with a brief, non-nude, non-bikini photospread of Saaya. I have no idea what the photos look like but apparently they were done in good taste and the interviewer treated Saaya with kid gloves.

This just strikes me as another mixed blesing for Saaya and her career. On the one hand, Playboy has a good deal of cultural cachet – to be given a few pages in it would be a great marketing and promotional coup. On the other hand, merely appearing in its pages would emphasize Saaya’s sexual aspect: you can try all you like to avoid the topic, but it’s going to come up in some context.

If the pictures are as tasteful and glamorous as Santos claims, I’m sure Saaya is thrilled. That said, imagine her thumbing through the rest of the magazine and finding the nude pictorials (which are admittedly tame by most standards). What would she be thinking? How would she be taking this latest development?

It’ll be interesting to see if she can put the gravure and politial intrigue behind her and focus on Sweet Kiss. If that happens and she becomes just another eleven-year-old aspiring to be the next BoA or Destiny’s Child, will there be a drop in attention? Would everyone around her take this in stride? The genie’s out of the bottle, Saaya (and her management) knows she can get attention whenever she puts on a bikini. Will they continue to use it, save it for emergencies (i.e., for special promotions or if interest in Sweet Kiss flags), or not use it at all?