Chokkan 2 Close-Up: A Summary

Filed in Cult Of Pop 2.0

With Rainbow 7 coming out today, it’s not a bad time to consider the girls of Morning Musume, what they contribute, what future they have.

Believe it or not, I still enjoy watching this PV. Along with a few other select Morning Musume PVs – “Joshi” (both regular and Panic Train versions), the alternate take of “Go Girl! Koi no Victory” – it’s fascinating for how it displays each girl’s idol persona with remarkable clarity. Having devoted a blog entry to each girl, let’s now sum up what I’ve determined.

Koharu Kusumi.

Most Valuable Asset: Energetic newbie enthusiasm.

Post-Musume Future: Very unclear. Wouldn’t bet on much of anything, at this point.

Tanaka Reina.

Most Valuable Asset: Strong lead vocals, strong idol persona.

Post-Musume Future: Bright for solo career.

Michishige Sayumi.

Most Valuable Asset: Overpoweringly cute idol persona.

Post-Musume Future: Bright for gravure or modelling, very dim for singing.

Kamei Eri.

Most Valuable Asset: Strong idol persona, strong comedic skills, good vocals.

Post-Musume Future: Bright for comedy, fair for singing with a group.

Niigaki Risa.

Most Valuable Asset: Strong vocals with untapped potential as lead.

Post-Musume Future: Fair for singing, brighter chance with a group.

Ogawa Makoto.

Most Valuable Asset: Strong vocals, very strong for comedy.

Post-Musume Future: Bright for comedy, dim for continued idol career.

Konno Asami.

Most Valuable Asset: Strong comedic gifts, very strong for bikini photobooks.

Post-Musume Future: Very bright for gravure, very dim for singing.

Takahashi Ai.

Most Valuable Asset: Strong lead vocals.

Post-Musume Future: Bright for solo singing career, perhaps brighter for group singing career.

Fujimoto Miki.

Most Valuable Asset: Strong lead vocals, distinct idol persona.

Post-Musume Future: Positively, blindingly bright for solo career. Give it to her already!

Yoshizawa Hitomi.

Most Valuable Asset: Strong vocals, distinct idol persona.

Post-Musume Future: Bright for group singing career, not as bright for solo idol career.

So… Any opinions out there?


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12 Responses to “Chokkan 2 Close-Up: A Summary”
  1. acetonic says:

    Mikitty has already had a shot at a solo career and the sales were underwhelming enough that she was slotted into Momusu. Since that’s what she originally auditioned for, I guess it worked out. I don’t know if they feel her image has shot up enough for another stab at solo work.

    I think Takahashi will be the next to leave to solo pastures. 5th gen has been intact for longer than any previous generation and she’s really the only choice to go.

    Just my 1.36 yen.

  2. CJ Marsicano says:

    Takitty deserves to be leader or sub-leader for awhile. Yes, let her test the waters as a solo singer first a-la Maki Goto, but IMO she should have had the sub-leader spot after Yossi was elevated.

    As for Fujimoto, put her in a group of her own a-la Sexy Otanajan. (did I just fuck up that spelling?)

    And for a really far-left-field suggestion… reform MiniMoni (right where they left off before Mika went to try to be Norah Jones), give them guitars and drums (Aibon and Nozomi would make a great bass/drums rhythm section since they seem so telepathically connected), and let them make the H!P equivalent of “Fun House”! XD

  3. niji says:

    Morning Musume aside, why aren’t you going gaga over Maiko’s new group Maria and their recently released first PV? I assumed you would at least mention Maiko’s puffy cheeks and cute overbite even by passing by now. That Kago scandal must’ve really shook you up. Heh…

  4. acetonic says:

    I was wondering about that too. I really like MARIA’s single and PV. The lead guitarist scares me a little and having two lead singers who play bass confuses me, but I like it!

  5. niji and acetonic:

    I’ve actually got a backlog of PVs I wanna talk about, including Halcali’s and Maria’s. I should be getting to it in the next week or so…

  6. Steve Harrison says:

    Boy is THIS OT!!!
    I would like to make a long story short by saying that I even though SweetS is very big on this blog..being a die-hard H!P fan, I rejected all these so-called Momusume wannabies (Dream, SweetS etc)…However, I just got (thankyou BT) the Earthship 2005 tour DVD out of curiosity.. (Damn, I was IN Shibuya in Aug. the day of the show and ignored it..what an A**H*** I am!!) NOW… I AM IN LOVE !! SweetS wa ga dai suke desu!! Every damn song is great, and the I have figured out one of the many reasons why I like them so much. After hearing songs like Arigatou. The main lead singer on that song (?) sounds like Ruppina (my favorite solo singer) and a less throaty, Utata Hikaru. This is even more impressive since I can hear that same mature voice sophistication in SweetS 1st single, Lolita: Strawberry in Summer. which they were basically children..and So damn cute!!! While I still love MM & H!P SweetS has taken over my heart. I have played their Elements CD and the DVD tour until my DVD player has actually burnt out…

    Note for Ray:
    1) I think you should have a way for people to post things that are not linked to a specific articles. If I had posted this in your last SweetS related article, no one would have read it as it would have been out of date.

    2) **IMPORTANT**I want to get the SweetS PB, does it have a lot of early pics in it around the time of their first 2 singles? They were SO cute then….

    WHY can I not find SweetS goods like tee-shirts, & non-CD/DVD items anywhere?? I’ve looked on the web, the official site, eBay, NOTHING! Unlike H!P which you can find tons! Anyone know of a SweetS link that I can get stuff??

  7. CJ Marsicano says:

    Steve, I tried to find SweetS wallpaper and came up with either gegotz or bupkiss, depending on whether you lean Italian or Jewish. 😉

  8. Steve Harrison says:

    I guess that means no SweetS stuff easily avail?? Damn..I want one of those blk, Earthship tour t’s or even better tour jackets…and trading cards..and….
    BTW Uf you want wallpaper, the official SweetS site has wallpapers in the “special contents” section.

    However, what about the PB? Are there any early pics of the girls (1st & 2nd single era) in the photobook? If so, about what 5 are early pics vers. more recent photos?
    Yasashi sa o arigotou gozaimashita (sono mae ni!)

  9. Steve Harrison says:

    Oh, my typing stinks..I meant “what % early pics (not 5..forgot to shift)

  10. Steve and CJ:

    The best place to find the latest SweetS information are two of my all-time favorite blogs, Idolizing St. Anna and Made in Paradise. Santos of Idolizing St. Anna has been to several concerts and handshake events, so he’s actually touched the hand of goddesses! Also, shidoshi – a sometime commentator here – has actually met SweetS when he won a prize at an event. The story is here.

    The SweetS official site is here and the wallpapers are here. The excellent if nascent fan site Heavenly SweetS is apparently gone now, but they had some really nice wallpapers. If I can find them, I’ll post them – or if somebody knows where Heavenly SweetS moved, the URL would be appreciated.

    After a quick search I found the fan site SweetS Unlimited. And the always-valuable wiki.theppn has basic information as well as links to a couple of forums.

    The first SweetS PB has pictures from the group’s entire history, though it tends to focus on their trip to Hawaii in March 2005 and pictures from that era. Oh and this torrent from Hello! Online has SweetS from two years ago making chocolates for Valetnine’s Day. Very very cute!

    As for request #1, Steve, recent comments to Version 2.0 are posted on the index page, whether they respond to a recent post or an older one. However, I’d been thinking of something for a few weeks now and figure, what the heck… See the next post.

  11. Chuck says:

    Have you tried e-mailing the girl behind Heavenly SweetS? I imagine she’d know where it went, or at least be able to give out the nice wallpapers if she got out of the Web site biz.

  12. Chuck:

    The actual website is gone, the domain name up for sale. I haven’t had a chance to look for the wallpapers but keep an eye out in the forum if I do find them. FYI, they’re wallpapers based on the early Bounceback singles.