I used to be able to do these pv reviews in a couple of days after the release. Nowadays I am always late with them, this time because I was waiting for an HD release of this pv. Whatever, I’ll write about whatever interests me and Momusu always does. We finally have the entire pv of the fabulous OneTwoThree single.
50th single…it’s crazy to think about eh? FIFTY! It’s a robo-sparkle fest of corset-ed awesome. It’s a far cry from their 40th single, a comparatively subdued, black-and-white, ballet-fest of pouting.
I thought I could use this opportunity also to talk about the new members in more detail.
And give you some delightful caps.
Be warned: this is pretty long.
Looking at what came one single before this, it’s amazing how far they have come. The eight new members were buried in baby-chick costumes, leaping around and flapping fluffy wings. Everyone got a line, sure, but I don’t remember anyone standing out all that much. Ditto Renai Hunter, although to be fair, that one was all about Niigaki. In this one however, I am delighted to see even those in the back rows jumping forward. Certainly, there is a LOT of Ace (Riho) and Winky, but since Winky seems to be phoning this one in from pouty-planet, Riho looks that much better. She certainly seems like she’s having a lot more fun. It’s odd how much the two senpai seem to fade out.
Not completely of course. Nothin’ keeps Shige down.
But as much as they’re professional, as much as they sound predictably good and very LIKE themselves, it’s a relief to notice the new generations.
I say relief because honestly, I don’t see the two senpais being there much longer. They will probably graduate Shige and Winky together, because that seems to be the way everything goes now. The way they are speeding forward with auditions, the ninth gen is quickly moving up to the foremost position and the shelf life of a Momusu member doesn’t usually go past 25 (Yuuko was the only exception as far as I know). I love Shige as leader, but I can’t imagine Winky ever being in that position for more than a few months. I’m still convinced she’d find it troublesome and she’s got enough troubles trying to weigh herself down with accessories.
The point is, it feels good to know that these kids want to keep Momusu going and love it as much as we do. You can sense their hunger and you can sense how much they’re loving it. If it’s fake, it’s a damn good show. And if it’s not fake, it’s endearing as hell.
Let’s start off with Ace, since there is quite a lot of her saturating this pv. For the most part, I don’t really mind and it’s unavoidable because she is a main singer. People have pointed out that she’s modelling herself after Winky, but I don’t really think that’s true. If she’s giving forth a Winky vibe, it’s probably because she is the other main singer in the singles and our little Ace is a little bit competitive. It happened when Takahashi was there too. I don’t think it’s simply copying anyone as much as taking what works for the other girls and making it her own. I got a lot of Goto Maki vibes off her too. Something about her smiles in this pv made me think of Goto.
This face is absolutely adorable. I’m thrilled not to see that odd-unsettling half-smile in this.
Maybe they are talking more about her nasally-high voice sounding like Winky, but that is probably just age and she’s sounding better every single. Now that she’s smiling a little bit more, making actual expressions, she looks very pretty.
Which is not to say that she’s never scary in this: never forget that no matter how cute you are, she could chop off your head with two fingers if she really wanted to. I always find a cap like this, where it looks like Ace is trying to push or poke someone behind her. It’s refreshing to have such ambition again, especially because the others aren’t backing off in the face of it.
She might not have many lines, but she scored the center dance position and revels in it. I loved watching her. She’s interesting because while Riho’s ambition is fairly easy to spot, Daishi’s seems effortless. It’s like she’s competing but not that worried about it. She dances with the same fierceness as Riho, but she looks like she’s enjoying it to the point that it doesn’t matter when Riho steps forward again. There are so many caps of her in the dance when she looks like she’s just screaming, “WOO HOOOOOO!”
Or she’s being awesome.
D: “Push me all you want, suckaaaaa.”
W: “Freakin’ juniors. Gawd!!”
She has an interesting face also. I know that’s a strange kind of statement, but there are moments she reminds me of Yasuda Kei, moments like this cap when she is adorable and pretty, and moments when her mouth is open so wide it’s like a black-hole of doom. Did you notice she has really big, pouty lips at times too (yeah, that didn’t make me sound creepy at all)?
And sometimes she looks a wee bit crazy.
Sorry, but if I stare at this long enough I start to want to back up slowly…
It’s insane… I wish I knew more about her character. Maybe she can look so happy because she doesn’t have that same pressure. Ace has always said she wanted to be like Takahashi and I assume she meant a center in the group. Well now that she has that, she has to keep it. Daishi has the luxury of simply pwning whatever comes her way without that same pressure on herself. As far as I know she hasn’t expressed anything like a wish to dominate, but she certainly is on her way to being hard to ignore.
Don’t be creepy and say “Oooh she’s so SEXEH” because, for crapssake, she’s TWELVE! Sexy is not the word, but she certainly seems to be going for a fierce, mature image. Thing is, that cuteness is there too, almost overpoweringly so. She’s balancing the two effortlessly, which is why everyone is so uncomfortable when talking about her in this pv.
She knows exactly what she’s doing. She’s been compared (at least by Nakai) to Tsuji Nozomi who joined when twelve or thirteen, probably because she had the exact same hairstyle and those kiddy fangs people adore so much. They pushed Tsuji as mischievous child pretty quick. That isn’t Kuduu’s character at all. She’s got leader written all over her, both in how she deals with her fellow members and how she expresses herself.
She’s already perfecting her Nacchi face. Or maybe she’s just a little disappointed in you. Yes YOU. Why don’t you straighten up a little and stop the nonsense?
But her adorable-teeny-tiny moments are just enough to hide that iron fist.
D’awwwwwwww…Don’t you just want to give her a teddy bear or something? The kiddy fangs really do give a Tsuji vibe, don’t they?
Beyond just that lovely character gap, I love her voice so far and I can’t wait to hear her in the 10th gen coupling song. Let’s hear this huskiness you keep going on about!
And while we’re talking about character gaps, let’s talk about Eri-pon. I still can’t get over how pretty she looks whenever she poses. Then you watch her dance and she’s all over the place, sometimes looking great, some times looking lost, some times flailing about like Iida Kaori before she grew into her limbs. Her lip-synching still leaves you with too many strange wide-open mouth expressions then it flashes to an Eri-pose and you’re marveling at how gorgeous she can look.
Eri-pon is supposedly KY which as far as I understand means that she can’t read or react appropriately to the atmosphere around her. This KY character thing seems to be how they will push her, but rather than it being something that weighs her down, I think it can really keep her interesting. She’ll improve with dancing and the like, but no matter how impressive she gets, she’ll never be afraid to express herself because it might shatter her image. KY people can get away with a lot, can’t they? Character gaps are always going to draw people in. It’s a concept that I really enjoy in idol-dom. Isn’t it funny how similar that is to our previous Eri? She was a little air-headed but gorgeous and talented too. Eri-pon has learned very early how to make herself look best. Some Momusu never quite master that.
And that’s a boooooo!
Remember to be number one…
You must shine so much that the CG blurs out everyone else (LOVE that moment).
That expression means that it’s FIGHTO-ON!
Now, let’s get Winky out of the way.
W: “Everybody BOW!!”
Yeah. Well. She’s there.
I still think it’s odd that I notice her so little, since every other shot is her making the same three expressions. She sounds fine. She dances…a bit. She looks…fine, minus that stupid bow (I don’t care who wears them – some idol staples just look silly, ok?). I can’t figure it out. Is she not into the song or was she just having an off day? Or does she care and all but she’s just overshadowed by all the young, hungry talent around her?
Her eyes are…um…impressive.
Shhhhh, now let’s not talk too much about all that talent around her…
Well, if they’d stop being awesome then we wouldn’t have to. Winky surrounded by kouhai who are just pwning their butts off.
Check out that expression on the Zuk! You don’t wanna mess with that.
Anyway…let’s talk about the Zuk. Zukki is much beloved for being down-to-earth and hilarious (at least I HOPE she is, because otherwise you’re missing out big time), but also she’s targeted because she isn’t a twig. To be fair, she’s still quite young and many members have had their weigh go up and down in the course of their careers. There is just as much backlash when members are too skinny. I don’t want that to be all people ever talk about when it comes to her. There is enough pressure on her. That being said, even I have to admit that she doesn’t seem remotely comfortable in this pv. It was the same in Only You. Then there is that hair.
Z: “Let’s not get into that.”
Yeah. That’s another thing. I don’t know why her hair is up like that. It suits her character but not that costume. There are very few shots of Zukki and she seems to fade into the back more than anyone. I feel like she has no idea what is expected of her here.
Z: “What’s wrong with the hair anyway?”
Zukki doesn’t seem as concerned as the others with appealing herself as pretty. I’m not saying she isn’t pretty or adorable; frankly a smile like that can deliver happiness faster than a cupcake. Thing is, how does she present herself when she can’t use that smile? She has to be able to deal with mature stuff as much as she can revel in the genki stuff. She is trying. I hope she’ll keep working. I don’t want her to get lost because it’s been too long since we’ve had someone like her. Honestly I can’t believe how natural and relaxed she is in variety situations. If she can transfer that same confidence to her singing and dancing, she will be unstoppable.
She is another one who balances mature and cute well. I still don’t see much of her in the dancing or the actual singing, but she certainly knows about how to make herself pretty. Everyone keeps mentioning that her hairstyle is the same as Shige’s in her infamous photobook. To which I say…
Yeah. And? It looks awesome.
Both her and Zukki give off an extremely vulnerable feeling. Zukki tries her best at dance because she has no experience at all – it must be tough. Harunan has modelling experience, but no singing experience, so she’s trying her best to learn how to express herself in that way. I’m not saying it very well, but they just seem like such earnest people and I always feel especially protective of members like that. I love her enthusiasm and her sweet character isn’t quite the same as simply being cute.
She’s fine with the posing part, so let’s give her a chance to show her stuff with the singing part.
If you want to talk cute, you’ve got Masaki, who seems to have disregarded the tone of the song entirely and is just workin’ the cute as much as she can. I was kinda surprised at how much screen time she got. I love the new hairstyle, even though it makes her look about…well, her age. It’s funny that her generation mate Haruka looks so much older and she looks exactly her age. It’s partly that and partly the fact that she just goes for it in every shot she has. I wish she could have given us that scrunchy nose smile. It’s the cutest thing in the world…
Her closeups are really the only place she shines in this pv. I didn’t notice her much in the dance shot.
Doin’ her best!
I like that she’s cute without a sense that she’s trying too hard to be. I really love her line (though it’s not so much a line as a…syllable) and how she digs in to it. I want to hear more from her. The 10th gen coupling song is supposed to be very genki and such, so I’m looking forward to seeing what she can do with it.
So, so cute.
And now we come to the lovely Princess of our eight new members: Miss Mizuki. People have called her Fuku-Hime because…she’s just so lovely. You can’t help it. She has such a calming sense about her. I love everything about her in this pv.
Her little moments with Shige are the best part. Both for how she dances and for how unexpectedly fitting it is that she’s paired with that particular member. Both her and Shige can work that Ero-kawaii thing I keep talking about. Maybe that’s why they are suddenly being paired so often. Also why their colours are light and dark pink respectively. I didn’t get it at first. I mean, Mizuki isn’t exactly the new Koharu. Shige did her Rainbow Pink nonsense with Eri-pon, the odd, cute, but spastic kyukkie. In contrast, Mizuki is someone soothing, someone with a sweet voice, someone who isn’t just pretty, but borders on beautiful.
I don’t mean to fangurl too much here, but honestly…LOOK at her!
Yowzaa! (yep, I wrote that again)
She seems like she’d be able to put up with a lot, from sheer love of H!P alone.
See that look. That is the look when Shige is feeling herself up in the middle of the routine.
Then you just go with it. Cause hey, why not, right?
S: “Talk about me properly!!”
Queen Shige is back to her ‘uh’ and ‘ahs’ for the most part and when she does sing, it’s heavily auto-tuned. I honestly don’t mind that. I think, as long as it fits in with the rest of the song, it works for her. And it also seems just like her that she’s allowing the youth to overpower both her and Winky.
Again, not completely. You still notice her because she’s Shige and she just refuses to go unnoticed, but I can’t say I was watching her as much as I was watching the newer members. I love that when we watch her in dance shots, even after ten years, she still has moments where she looks like she is concentrating as hard as she can on what she’s doing. She goes from a blank faced concentration to something like this in seconds:
Who hurt you!? WHOOO!??
Probably the best lesson she will pass on to these new generations is to love yourself. That is where everything starts. If you can’t do that, nothing can happen for you.
I wish I could say more about her. Like I keep saying though, those kids are really going for it.
Some Final Thoughts
– The constant CGI sparkles/snowflakes/light-explosions jazz it up but are a bit of a headache after awhile. They already used sparkly-blur-o-vision for Takahashi’s grad single, let’s think of something less blinding to jazz things up please!
– I think most of the time the girls look gorgeous, but that golden lighting in those blurry dance-shot moments doesn’t really do any of the girls any favours. In fact it made the bags under Winky’s eyes uncomfortably visible. Get some sleep, woman!!
– I really like the editing during the dance moments. I thought it was a lot more dynamic. What I didn’t need were the several jump-cuts backwards and forwards that made no sense and those two or three moments that just repeated over and over (Kuduu putting her hand on her heart for example). Just lazy.
-Noticing the hierarchy like everyone else has:
Our two leads.
And our cute-princess-dancer backups. Loving the attitude in this cap.
– LOVE the dance, mostly because it’s so energetic and well, because of the hair flipping. I just can’t resist it. It’s nice that for the 50th single we have such a different song, instead of something completely generic. I’ve heard whispers that The Matenrou Show (the other A-side) is a bit of a let-down and there is really no one singing other than Ace and Winky. I think that’s kind of a mistake. I’m sure I’ll end up enjoying the song, but I’d love to see more songs like this, if only for the moments it gives to the newer members.
One little moment can really make all the difference.
Stay tuned for the Materou Show. Let’s hope for even more from these new kids.