Sunday Blog Roundup: The Ultimate Momusu Idea, Alo-Hello Sweetness, and The Worst Group Béné Has Ever Seen

Filed in American Wota 1.0

Though wrongfully neglected last time, CJ Marsicano of Stuck in a Pagoda with Motoko Aoyama has the ultimate idea for Momusu which is highly compelling and comprehensively argued… I don’t know if I quite buy it, but it should spur a good deal of thoughtful discussion. And for some reason, the idea of Momusu appearing on Law & Order SVU doesn’t strike me nearly as exciting as having Richard Belzer co-emcee an H!P concert with Makoto. Also on the H!P front, Angela has moved Sakuranbo! from Blogger to vox, and it seems like a great move: she not only provides a helpful Jpop primer and a matching Jrock primer, she also has a detailed review of the Otome Gumi / Sakura Gumi Alo-Hello! Photobook which is fun and has lots (and I meant lots) of great Momusu eyecandy, including Kago passionately grappling in the sand with Eri (okay not really, but we don’t know what happened when the camera man left, do we?). Angela does a really nice job with this post, with some great observations to balance the eyecandy. It’d be interesting to see her cover more recent photobooks in a similar manner.

Two other blog entries this week are must-reads of the first magnitude: Pata of Irresponsible Pictures takes us through an interesting guide to Jpop fan art, using Berryz as an example. At one point he writes, “They’re practically the bishoujo formula come to life: the tall one, the short one, the pretty one, the elegant one, the squeaky one, the funny one, the MASSIVE one.” I’m trying to parse who’s who, though I find myself resisting the obvious conclusion that Maasa is the MASSIVE one. Oh, and the fan art he includes is a lot of fun, too! And stepping away from the Tsunku crowd, Béné of the charming Meganekko states quite plainly, “Chase is the worst group I’ve ever seen”. In a very succinct fashion, she points out why this is so… and yet, I still want to see Chase bikini DVDs and photobooks. But no more music, no more singing, no more PVs.

Meanwhile, Kd of Iroiro Aru Sa! is distressed at how Utaban has been negelecting Morning Musume as of late. But wait, there was that great episode earlier this year with Ishibashi and Nakai reminiscing with Yasuda, Nakazawa, Gocchin, and the others, and they all go out after the show ends… wait, Kd means the current line-up? Shit, of course they’re being neglected! Ishibashi said point blank they suck. Kd also admits there’s a good news / bad news situation with “Aruiteru” looking to be Momusu’s first number one single in too long a time… Adding to the hatred of Morning Musume’s latest single, zush of Kakko-ii.com expresses disappointment in “Aruiteru” as well. Now, it’s one thing when a U15 Berryz-obsessed H!P fan like me thinks this song sucks, or a young punk with attitude like Kd puts it through the grinder of her well-honed snark. But zush is a more reasonable fan of H!P and Momusu, so to have him take issue with the song… well, that speaks volumes in itself. In contrast, Jinryuichi of Hello Non-Pro Hour is excited at this Oricon achievement, and troubled that others don’t share his enthusiasm.

Of course, it’s all a matter of perspective. Over at YODC, the magnificent bastards debate over why the new “Aruiteru” costumes are so hot. Perhaps best of all, Johnny of The Mind shares “Aruiteru” photos of Momusu. All I can say is, Sayumi is now my favorite in the current line-up – doesn’t matter if she can’t sing or whatever, she’s just pure scrumptiousness. Eighth gen has to be especially pedolicious to make me sway from this.

CJ of Stuck in a Pagoda celebrates Tanaka Reina’s seventeenth birthday with her clip of “Koi wo Shichaimashita”, while YODC’s Langdon has an interesting set of pictures to celebrate the ocassion and Johnny of the Mind joins in on the birthday wishes. Ikimasshoi unveils the tracklist to Ayaya’s upcoming fourth album… as well as its rather ugly cover. At MySpace, JJ looks at this month’s H!P news, starting with Megukami’s exit. Also at MySpace, nishi (now samipiggy?) has an initial reaction to the cover of Tsuji’s new photobook that I can’t help but share, as well. It’s like she’s on display in a storefront of some red light district. At Your Opinion Doesn’t Count, easily confused but still magnificent bastard Craig shares some absolutely adorable pics of Suzuki Airi. And in a bittersweet development, Switch-On! News reports that four H!P Kids – Momoko, Risako, Airi, and a pre-boot Megukami – will be hosting the next Hello Pro Hour.

Meganekko’s Béné shares some H!P – and SweetS and Harenchi Punch – karaoke she’s done; while at Yossittelua, Noone provides a striking re-interpretation of the Ribon no Kishi musical which seems a lot more interesting than the original. At Hello Non-Pro Hour, Jinryuichi also takes a nicely screencapped look at last week’s Hello! Morning where Rika is swept off her feet by a guy playing a bar host. And while being an idol at H!P may be akin to being raised in an all-girls Catholic school, I think this is more cultural than idol-specific; that is, many (but not all) of the Japanese women I encounter – whatever their age – are both embarassed and pleased at aggressive attention from men, especially if it’s playful and not at all threatening. He also looks into the provenance of Wink’s “Sabishii Nettaigyo” – famously covered by W, but also by some group called the Nolans (named after the Angels pitcher?).

On the Avex Trax front, AAA’s Yukari returns from her “health problem” as reported by Santos of Idolizing St. Anna and Thea of Made in Paradise. Santos speculates a bit too far on what she may have had to do to return to AAA, but it’s the thought that counts. Thea also notes developments concerning other, non-sex-addicted members of the group. Meanwhile, J-Pop CD Cover Art’s HANABI.1984 shares BoA’s “Winter Love” single. Elsewhere, pengie of unchained is excited at news of Tsuchiya Anna’s next single – and wow, she looks a lot like Hepburn Shinya in that photo! And I mean that as a compliment. Thea of Made in Paradise has an inadvertantly funny review of Flame’s new single and PV: “Anyways, I already saw a preview of the PV from Pony Canyon’s site, but I thought that was temporary cause it looked too cheap. But it was the actual PV, so it’s kinda sad lol.” Sounds like the recent run of Momusu PVs. And at YODC, Craig ruminates on the streams of pop and porn.

On the rock front, Go of the venerable jrocknyc reviews Dual Jewel’s “Aishyuu Melancholia” single and performs a hilarious evisceration of Anti-Alice’s Dark Tea Party. Go seems pretty pleased with Dir en Grey’s “Agitated Screams of Maggots” and shares Dir en Grey’s U.S. tour schedule for February of next year… well, I won’t care unless Shinya does that Audrey Hepburn thing again. He also looks at Mucc’s latest single, which has a DVD version covering their Otakon 2006 appearance; Aura Candy notes the purple sky connection in the DVD, though she finds Yoshiki frustrating, to say the least. Meanwhile, Gail of the impressive Himitsu does a track-by-track review of SID’s new album Play.

While the band’s name makes me think of hairy, gay sports fans, Shay of SparkPlugged shares clips of Base Ball Bear having fun, with more to follow. Continuing his stroll down old school lane, CJ of Stuck in a Pagoda looks at rock band Street Sliders. And at Your Opinion Doesn’t Count, Langdon Alger does Tsuji Eriku a big favor by posting Red Bacteria Vacuum as the J-Music Clip of the Week (Eriku’s Lost Love Edition).

On the drama front, Akiramike of the mighty HamsapSukebe is on the fence about Nodame Cantabile‘s latest episode, finding the “characters are basically 2d shoujo stereotypes”. usagi of the usagi incidents also looks at Nodame Cantabile, finding it a more reasonable dose of than the manga. usagi also looks at a couple of noteworthy girlpower films this week, Sofia Coppola’s Marie Antoinette and The Notorious Bettie Page. On the anime front, WEBmikey reviews the latest Gatchaman collection. In gaming news (sort of), lolitron reports that gaming genius Itagaki Tomonobu is being sued for sexual harassment. Say it isn’t so! The creator of Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball (one of my favorite games, I must admit), has a sexist side to him? Who’d have thunk it? For you literary-minded types, at The Great Swifty Speaketh, Justin takes a very detailed look at two collections of Yukio Mishima’s short fiction: it’s pretty involved, but a fascinating read nonetheless.

In the How I Learned To Loved The Bomb department, Go of jrocknyc has a great photo fromamilitary technology convention. 74x passes along a news piece about maid-hunting in Akibahara. So maids are hunted, as are otaku… god damn, Akibahara’s becoming one big high school. On a personal note, Aural Candy misses NYC and waxes quite poetic on it… well, I don’t miss NYC, but I grew up in Long Island so I’m a bridge-and-tunnel dick. But AC’s melancholy is a fine piece of writing and will make you yearn for the big, rotten apple, too. Last but by no means least, our very own Thea of Made in Paradise is moving on to Nursing 5! And still blogging! Congratulations to her on both counts!

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14 Responses to “Sunday Blog Roundup: The Ultimate Momusu Idea, Alo-Hello Sweetness, and The Worst Group Béné Has Ever Seen”
  1. Anonymous says:

    Finally, Ray has become a Sayumi fan!

    Cheers for Team Sayumi! ^___^

  2. Johnny says:

    Speaking of the Aruiteru photos: Mikitty still looks hot.

    Must be all that GAM smooching. ^___^

  3. Shinji says:

    another great read, CJ Marsicano’s Idea is interesing. some other good blogs in the week.

    how come you didn’t mention Kakkp-ii’s other blog? by wu-san a interesting in-depth talk on Utaban and Morning Musume? It was posted up late though I guess so maybe missed out.

    yep the feeling is that, Aruiteru is pretty lame 🙁

    and about Ray being a Sayumi fan…im still not totally convinced XP

  4. Craig says:

    I have to hover over the links to get that blocky effect now… is that the new style?

  5. Shinji says:

    like craig me 2. it’s not a problem but it was easier to get onto the blogs from your links before when they were highlighted already

  6. Kd says:

    “…a young punk with attitude like Kd puts it through the grinder of her well-honed snark.”

    “It’s like she’s on display in a storefront of some red light district.”

    “- and wow, she looks a lot like Hepburn Shinya in that photo! And I mean that as a compliment.”

    Pure GOLD. ^_^

    I see that the roundups keep getting longer and longer. Obviously, it means more chance of RSI, but it’s good to see more J-Pop related blogging around. Feed Of Pop shows up around 350-400 posts per month now… No idea how you manage to cover it all… I salute you. In a fugly Aruiteru majorette uniform. :p

  7. Maria says:

    I’m with Jinryuichi. Whether you like the song or not, it’s pretty impressive to see Momusu hit No. 1 after so many years. It’s admittedly rather unfair that better songs like Shabondama didn’t reach the top mark, but still. Everyone can make their own theories about it, isn’t it fun? I, for one, think that it’s the return to the basics what earned them this much attention.

  8. Swifty says:

    Thanks for the links. I agree with Shinji, I was staring blankly at the entry at first, wondering where exactly were the links before realizing I need to hover over them.

  9. Ray Mescallado says:

    Anonymous: Actually, Sayumi has been my #3 favorite current Musume from at least a year ago. (I think.) And when I grew disenchanted with Reina’s relentless kawaii-ness (sorry CJ!), Sayumi became #2 in my personal list a while back. And much as I love Mikitty, Sayumi’s too hot to not be my #1 now. (Waits for pengie to throw insults in Sayu’s direction.)

    Shinji: I actually missed wu-san’s blog entry because of the cutoff time when I was working on the SBR, but it’ll pop up next week definitely.

    Maria: Great points made, but yeah… it’s funny that I feel resentment that it’s THIS song that made #1 and not some of the better singles (any of the singles) in the past year.

    About the linkage: I had the same concern as you guys, actually, but liked how the page looked so CLEAN without the underline and borders pre-hover. It’s not very helpful, thoughm, is it? So I changed the CSS some more, and hopefully the links all work in a uniform fashion throughout the blog and are clearly seen. Thanks always for the helpful input!

  10. Chuck says:

    I’m not much more of a Sayumi fan than Pengie, but I have to admit, Sayumi has looked really fantastic in recent pictures. Although I have no idea how you could get tired of Reina’s relentless kawaiiness and then make the jump to Sayumi, who actually has a segment on her radio show where she tries to prove that nothing is cuter than her.

  11. jinryuichi says:

    Wow… has this been a week of turning events or what? 🙂 Amazing and comprehensive roundup once again!

    Right now, I’m looking forward for the next Hello Pro Hour bcos of Momoko. On the other hand, I’m feeling sad cos that’s the final episode as well. 🙁 I must admit too, that Sayumi has moved up in my H!P favourites rank, especially with last week’s HPH. Still not top 5 yet. But definitely within top 10.

    As for Momusu – I’m having some confused emotions myself, since the 1st day. I am happy Momusu is no.1, same time not too happy that it’s Aruiteru. I suppose the target audience is for the Japanese only… ^_^

  12. Melissa says:

    Wow… I have many many years knowing and practicing english but, I didn’t understand that term: the MASSIVE one. I want to know more about it 🙂

    Still, I really like your way of writing. There’s a talent and you shine because of that.

  13. Craig says:

    Massive = really, really big

  14. lancedragons says:

    ^^, I thought it was a pun