Ogata I-might-be-a-derpy-robot Haruna is GRADUATING!!
She’s only been here since 2015!
You-you can’t be serious!
And it’s for the sake of college!?
Isn’t that usually just a euphemism for ‘I no longer like the girls in my group’ (*see basically everyone in first gen S/mileage*)? Or ‘I have a boyfriend’?
I mean, sure, she’s an absolutely hopeless singer, but so was Shige and she managed to stay for ages! And she’s STILL singing and dancing, despite her demonstrable lack of talent. So, what’s the deal?
I’ll admit that in concerts and even in DVD magazines, I almost always forget she’s there. But unlike past members, her sudden appearances were kinda delightful. She’s become the member that will pop into frame, startle everyone, and then hop about laughing. She’s also quite beautiful and at times, too adorable for words.
In ‘There Were Eleven’ (stage play) she plays the drunken brother of a king and in one scene someone puts a knife to her throat. She’s supposed to yell in alarm and instead yodels, “Ooooh noooo! I’m gonna diiiiiie” and looks so doofy that it just made me fall off the couch laughing.
When she first joined, Ogata was so very nervous that everything she did seemed a little painful. She was also so thin you could see her entire spine. The only reason I bring that up is because it was alarming. It’s also why she looks comparatively chubby now.
For ages all I knew about her was that she used to practise figure-skating and that she couldn’t sing very well. When she did try, her attempts were…ok, but at times they made me cringe.
In ‘Triangle’ (her first stage play with Momusu), she gets a song with Masaki-kins and that might have been a mistake. While it’s the catchiest song in the play (in either version), her vocals are awful. She’s trying, but she just doesn’t have it. Chalk that up to being very new in the group, but her vocals are still pretty rough, even for a newcomer.
Cute as a button, though!
Derpity Derp Derp~! ❤
I did get to see her figure skating once or twice after she joined Momusu and I think she looked a hundred times more confident. She was graceful and happy and I wondered why she ever gave it up in the first place.
They also gave her a show in which she interviews athletes and while it’s interesting in its own way, her hosting is still so very awkward. I say awkward, but in an endearing way. I always feel like I’m watching my older sister who is doing fine, but could do so much more if she had the confidence.
Ogata has transformed over her short tenure into a bit of a weirdo and I really appreciate that awkward humour. I can’t honestly say I’ve noticed much improvement in her performances because I don’t really notice her. When she does appear, it’s not as if she’s a bad performer, but I don’t think she’s a good singer and I don’t think she’s as comfortable onstage by herself as she is on the ice by herself.
So how do I feel about her graduating? If it is about her education, and not just some lame excuse to boot her out, that just reveals to me how mature she is. It also reveals that she probably doesn’t see the idol world as her future. I don’t see it either.
I’m not trying to be cruel to her; she’s cute, quirky, and tries her best, but I couldn’t see her in any of the post-idol careers O.Gs usually go for (eg. guesting on variety shows, radio shows, acting, talk show hosting etc). And I don’t think she wants those either. It takes maturity and guts to be able to admit to yourself that you’ve tried your best, but this isn’t the right place for you.
Nobody ever really knows an idol’s motivation to start idol-ing in the first place. Haruna doesn’t seem like someone seeking fame or ego-fodder. Perhaps it was just to see if she could do it and now that she has, she’s ready for something else.
Consider, she’s only been in this business for two years and in that time she continued her studies while touring, recording, rehearsing, acting in plays, filming pvs, and goodness knows what else. I can’t imagine being so busy and still being alive at the end of it, let alone being the charming, cutie-pie Ogata has become.
I suppose I just feel nonplussed. Like I understand it, but it feels too soon and out of the blue. I guess I just assumed, as most do, that the next graduate would be the oldest member.
*sigh* I hope not.
Good job, Ogata!
I wish you all the very best.
PS: What are you studying, anyway?
PPS: What the hell will you sing for your final solo!??