Where have we seen this before? Everyone has an idea: some parts Shabondama, some parts Ai no Sono Touch My Heart, some parts…well, frankly there’s a lot of things we’ve seen before. It’s fairly standard. But they all look pretty, huh?
This one sounds like an anime opening to me. I almost wish it were. Why won’t Momusu shill some anime? It’s worked for almost every other anime-related group. And hey, Buono took on a life of its own. Arashi almost never does a single that doesn’t relate to someone’s movie or drama. Even if the group is not popular anymore, wouldn’t that give it a bit more mainstream appeal?
*sigh* Maybe not.
As a fan, I really like this song. It’s unremarkable though. I would put it as one of those singles that I like, but forget is there. I constantly forget about Egao Yes Nude and I loved it. I think it’s because it’s just such a busy song. The anime opening doesn’t match the catchy, pretty chorus and those urgent, staccato moments just sound jarring. One thing you won’t find me complaining about is the use of Autotune.
I think one reason it’s suddenly being overused is that K-pop “invasion” happening in Japan right now (that or the success of Perfume, who make music that suits autotune). K-pop seems to love autotune. And I don’t mind it, as long as you don’t mask the entire song in it, giving it some robotic, disjointed insane quality that doesn’t belong in H!P (unless you are Double-You and singing a song about robots). Momusu used it beautifully in songs like Fantasy ga Hajimaru but this is the first time they’ve used it in a single. And this time they used it on people who can actually sing (sorry Shige).
Mame brings it. Every time. You can auto tune her all you like, Tsunku, you can’t hide the fact that she needs to go solo. I think it just enhances the sudden, random, bad-ass PWN that her lines bring to the song. She is as close as we get to passable rap in Momusu and I’m going to love anything that puts her front and center because otherwise we get this.
Winky. There are just loads and loads of shots of her doing this or making this weird, half-smirking expression. Her close-ups are what we always get of her: side-fro, touch-own-face, pout etc.
Shige: barely there and yet stunning. Here is an example of someone who cannot sing, can barely dance, is constantly put to the back to go “uh” and “aah” and yet seems to shine, despite all that. Learn from her, Kyuukies.
Who hurt you? WHO!??
Ah. Right. Riho.
There isn’t much I can say about Riho that I didn’t say in Part1 of this post. In a way I was thrilled that someone from the Kyuukies got some screen time and more than one line. Solo lines, even. It wasn’t a surprise that it was Riho.
Woa. Don’t mess with Mitsui. Whew. Where even is she in this pv? I couldn’t get a close-up shot that didn’t look creepy somehow. I feel like she’s too threatened by the new members to be cute in this pv, so she keeps coming across like this: stern and silent, watching in the background. I know she’s taken on a sort of ‘mean’ character to help the Kyuukies learn, but I also know she tends to get jealous of new members.
Do something, Mitsui. Stop being languid and be the kind of adorable I know you can be! I’ve even seen you be bad-ass. I want to see that again. Come on, granny!!
Riida is stunning and bad-ass at the same time. She is simply lovely in this pv. I love her as a blonde, at least in this costume.
I always believe her, you know. She may not be, but I always believe she is feeling the lyrics and they genuinely affect her performance of the song. Watching her in this odd, busy, crazy song, she also teaches me that lip-synching is an art that the new members haven’t really mastered.
The close-ups of almost everyone else were pretty terrible. I couldn’t find one picture of Zukki (when she does get a line) where her mouth wasn’t open far too wide or when she wasn’t baring her bottom row of teeth. It’s the same with almost all the other members.
The hair department don’t do the Kyuukies any favours here. Zukki should have bangs at least if you’re going to yank her hair back. She has a sort of severe face, but when I encountered the above screencap I found it beautiful. You can see something soothing and unsettling all at once in that expression. It stopped me for a moment and I’m not sure why. Zukki is barely there in this pv, at the very back for the entire dance, though not as much as Eri-pon.
I think she exists in an entirely different pv from the rest of them. She looks adorable here. The hair suits her and so does the outfit. It’s just…she’s cut off the side of the frame for so much of the time that I don’t even know how good or bad her dancing is. She seems most comfortable in these panning still-shots where she can pose calmly and not concentrate on the next position to step into. Even during the final couple bars, when I could see her at the far left of the screen, she just sort-of waits for it to end. Her close-ups are the same as Zukki’s: open mouth into huge ‘O’ or bare bottom teeth for no reason. Riida needs to pass on some of her lip-synching-emote-a-thon skills.
Mizuki continues to be lovely, but not in such a shy, unassuming way, as she seemed to be in Majide. It feels like she is stepping forward a bit now. She is still in the background for most of it and her slicked back hair doesn’t really suit her, but I found my eyes always followed her in the dance-shots. Riho is clearly the most talented, but Mizuki stands out in a way I can’t put my finger on. Maybe it’s because she isn’t being forcefully pushed at me all the time. You can tell they really want to emphasize Riho in this pv. Mizuki is present in a way that allows me to notice her, rather than forces me to.
And you know what? I like that. I really like her. Show me those guns, Mizuki!
Now let’s talk about the coreography. There are some things about it that I really like: the energy, the leaps and spins, the hair-flippy moments…but there are a few things that are a little unfortunate. Why do they grab their chests in the middle of the chorus? Forget where they are touching, it just looks clumsy to me. And what’s with all those moments they are bending or throwing their hands up while running in circles? I cannot figure it out at all.
Hey! Don’t be discouraged, Momusu. I still love you!
Ok, ok. I’ll stop.
Overall, I like the song, I just don’t think it will end up one of my favourites. The chorus is nice and gets stuck in my head, I love the music but some of those moments are distracting to me, like they are slowing down the song when it doesn’t need to be.
I really wish they’d done more of an adventurous pv to go with the music and the theme. I mean, it’s a song about encouraging someone. They’re telling someone how awesome he/she is and how they support this person, even though they aren’t nearly as awesome. Plus you have that crazy staccato punching your ears every few minutes. Why not have them fighting to free someone? Maybe their hero got captured and the Momusu agents must rescue him/her, with their encouragement, genki and some kick-ass action sequences.
Have the main vocalists be the agents, ala Buono in My Boy and have the rest in the getaway vehicle, frantically running around trying to protect them from the guards. There could be lots of crazy technology in there (it doesn’t have to make much sense – it’s H!P. I mean Buono was fighting to get CAKE for crying out loud!) and maybe we could get to see Shige with some kind of rocket-launcher. How epic would that be? Dance-shot it up, but give everybody some way to shine.
And don’t tell me that’s too violent for H!P. Momo gassed a damn bunny in that Buono dvd. And she was grinning the whole time. Actually, they gassed someone in the My Boy pv too…
I’m really stuck in this anime theme. But it really sounds like an opening to me! There’s all this passion and urgency…
I guess there is always fanfiction, right?