Watanabe Mayu Graduation Concert Today!

Say Hi to Goodbye!

There was certainly not much time for fans to prepare for this big day.

Luckily, Mayu’s concert will be streamed live on TV in Japan and China(web) so for the rest of us, remember to catch the end of an era at 6.30pm Japan Time.

Streaming links:

FaceBook LIVE:https://www.facebook.com/groups/RC4437839/

FaceBook LIVE:https://www.facebook.com/ATC48/

 

OK直播台::https://www.ok.ru/live/362296843879
OK直播台:https://www.ok.ru/live/362296254055

 Other links

http://www.douyu.com/t/AKB48mayuyu (Flash needed)

Credits to AKB48 Taiwan Fan Club

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Watanabe Mayu’s last single “11gatsu no Anklet” is a final reminder of what AKB48 was all about

 

 

Honestly i was expecting AkiP to destroy Mayu’s graduation by giving her a meaningless commercial/drama-tied song. However, he must be feeling guilty for shoving Mayu behind the curtains all these years because the last single “11gatsu no Anklet” (“November’s Anklet”) is a nostalgic return to AKB48’s idol roots.

The composers of this song are Marutani Manabu and APAZZI. Marutani san is actually the same guy behind previous AKB48 songs like “Eien Pressure”, “Heart Eleki” and “Labrador Retriever”. Personally i liked most of them so i’m glad he delivered with “11gatsu no Anklet” too. Lyrics wise, i can finally see AkiP actually working hard because not only are they meaningful but also gives room for lotsa imagination.

Translation of Lyrics:

Wow wow wow wow
Wow wow wow yeah

With a semi-bob fringe and you smiling during the weekend
You suddenly asked to meet, what’s up?
An overcrowded beach house, a meeting way past its time.
The pancake we liked is still not coming.

Raising your left hand and showing me your ring finger
Did you want to say you’ve found a new boyfriend?
Ok! You Win!

November’s anklet, i still haven’t taken it off.
It’s the secret that you gave me(I’m sorry~)
Saying Hi to Bye
If you meet someone kinder than me, I can’t do anything about it
Will i be able to give up?

Wow wow wow wow
Wow wow wow yeah

It was supposed to be a happy news, but we’ve lapsed into silence
I want to stop you but it feels like i’d be chided for it
In the compact terrace cafe, on the other side of the windows
It seems like the colors of the sky and beach have faded
Miss you! He’s won! 

The Anklet from that summer, should i take it off now?
It’s swinging when i run on the beach
The memories of my ankle, under the blinding sun
Even the ripples from the waves are becoming sad as well

[Mayu’s solo] I planned to sort out my memories with you someday
I’ll just send them to his house.
Anklet anklet on my left ankle (Regret~)

November’s anklet, i still haven’t taken it off.
It’s the secret that you gave me(I’m sorry~)
Saying Hi to Bye
If you meet someone kinder than me, I can’t do anything about it
Will i be able to give up?

Wow wow wow wow
Wow wow wow yeah

Writing lyrics that paint a picture is actually what i love about 48Group songs, with my favorite piece of work being SKE48’s “Bukiyou Taiyou”. Even if the story is simple, it’s much more meaningful to listen to compared to the so-called hits “Koisuru Fortune Cookie” or “Heavy Rotation” which are basically empty in substance.

In “11gatsu no Anklet”, as usual, AkiP starts off writing from the perspective of a guy(shaded blue). The guy is a little nervous because he’s been called out to meet his ex-girlfriend. He realises she’s found a better someone and feels somewhat bitter because he’s still not over her. AkiP represents these feelings with a pretty catchy line “Ok! You Win!”

The guy ponders over his feelings for the girl while looking at his anklet, a couple item his ex gave. I particularly like how AkiP writes “Saying Hi to Goodbye” to represent the guy’s withdrawal from his ex.

Moving on the 2nd half of the song shaded red – this is where the lyrics get more ingenious. I’ve seen fans in China and Japan discussing what perspective the lyrics are being written from. Simply looking at it, it could still be the guy. But some think it was written from the ex-girlfriend’s perspective. And if that’s the case, the ex-girlfriend has remaining feels for the guy too which makes this an incredibly heart-tugging story.

Overall, the feelings of this guy is pretty much like how fans of Mayu would feel with her graduation. Sad, not so ready to give her up.

Live performance

When i saw the AKBingo version (2nd video), it felt quite simple but with the Halloween perf(1st video), i could see how much details there were to make this as orthodox idol as possible. The formation changes frequently without repetition. Fine details like the “ring on finger” and “pancake” and of cos “anklet on left leg” were enacted. I love the middle part where Mayu makes a red carpet entrance from the back flanked by members by her side. How the junior members at the back are dancing with all their effort despite not being filmed. The triangle line dance formation. And best of all, Mayu’s happy twirling during her solo lines!

I have to give a thumbs up to Shinobu’s costume team because those frilly dresses are done in Mayu’s favorite European nobility style.

—More to come—

 

More updates on NMB48 Sutou Ririka’s marriage announcement

Bunshun released more info about her “fiance” below.

  • Mid Twenties, coined as “A”
  • Dated for >1 year
  • Met because of Ririka’s Mum who works at a eatery
  • “A” is a close friend and regular customer of Mum’s eatery
  • “A” and Ririka met at a party.
  • “A” has full acknowledgement from Ririka’s family.
  • “A” was an NMB48 fan and understands her job so they dated indoors at his home.
  • “A” is born in Ehime, studied psychology and was a band member in his school days.
  • Surou Ririka’s SNS has photos of Ehime’s mascot “Mikyan” and T-shirts from unknown bands, possibly thanks to “A” influence.

Source


An ex-Bunshun reporter appeared in “Viking!” TV show and says that according to the reporter who interviewed “A”, he did not seem to have intentions to marry.

The guests went “OPS” and speculated that she was flustered about the Bunshun expose and didn’t know how to lie so she just turned what should be an “apology” into public proposal.


Nikkansports Q&A with Riripon

Q: Your feelings now?

When i announced it that day, I caused alot of chaos for many people..
Despite knowing the reactions, i wanted to say it and said it. As for how to face it, i discussed with different people. In the end, it’s still up to myself to think about it.

Q: Are you preparing to get married as per tabloid reports?
Yes. But the time is not fixed.

Q: The promise is made?
Yes

Q: Did you get a proposal?
It was at the start of this year. I can’t elaborate, but we will marry after i graduate.

 

Q: When did you start dating and how did you meet?
We met end of last year(another article says it’s last last year) via my mum.

 

Q: Is it wrong for some reports to say he’s a fan?
Yes

Q: How did he react after the announcement?
His feelings did not change. “Let’s definitely live a great life together ok?” he said.

 

Q: You told him that you’d announce it at the Sousenkyo?
Yes.

Q: Why at that place?
I wanted to say it myself. I was really troubled about it, but i really wanted to say it with my own mouth. So i chose that place.

 

Q: You also have the NMB theater as an option, but you wanted more people to know so you chose the Sousenkyo?
Sousenkyo is a special event, an event created with the fans. Though it’s like pouring water on it considering my situation, i wanted to say it no matter what.

Q: You had no choice because Bunshun was going to report it. So you picked Sousenkyo?
They didn’t approach my agency and went straight for my partner. I was the one who discussed with the adults. I didn’t pick Sousenkyo to make an announcement because i wanted to stand out.

 

Q: Were there no other timings?
I could say it later too, but i didn’t want it to go ignored. I worked thus far with a serious attitude. If i ignored it the feelings i treasured would become lies. So i chose the Sousenkyo.

Q: Did you know that the reports were going to be published during the Sousenkyo?
I knew it was all over the Internet. I also knew they went looking for my partner. So i discussed it knowing it was me.

Q: Is it true that he is in the medical industry and mid-twenties?
I can’t say too much as he’s a commoner.

Q: What will you do from now?
Now i’m thinking about the graduation. I’ve also been offered the “no graduation” solution, but if possible i’d graduate.

 

Q: Did you think about graduation when you made the speech?
When i said it, “graduation” is still a thing meant to be discussed in the future. But because i promised to graduate first before marrying, so i thought about graduating.

Q: So you wanted to graduate because both of you had the promise of marrying after you graduate?

-Nods-

Q: So what about your variety shows after graduating?
There are things i want to do since i had dreams entering showbiz. I definitely don’t want to give up on it. Fans have supported me so far so i don’t want to give up.

Q: Will you become a philosopher?
Yes

Q: What kinda genre? Academic or talent?
There are different ways to become one. I can’t say it now. We don’t know what happens in future.

Q: Do you have plans for undergraduate studies?
Yes

Q: You haven’t dismissed your plans to continue as a talent?
Yes.

Q: So you can realise your dreams as long as you are in showbiz?
Because so far i’ve managed to release a philosophy book.

 

Q: Do you have any regrets graduating AKB because of a proposal since you entered the group because you loved AKB?

*cries abit talking about her passion for NMB*
Talks about how she cannot forget someone saying “if you like someone just graduate” to her. Even though it’s the most natural thing to say she doesn’t want to give up her activities because of the memories with NMB and bonds with fans.

Q: Did you make the decision because your Mum is worried of you being in Osaka?
I made the decision on my own.

Q: Did you consult any of the members?
I didn’t speak to them directly.

Q: After the announcement?
On that day i spoke to all the NMB members. I also apologised to the senpais the next day. The members spoke their thoughts.

Q: What were the reactions?
They thought it was a joke. Because there were no audience in the event they thought they had to heat up the atmosphere. Seeing that i was really sorry to them. They didn’t blame me and listened.

Q: You talked to Sayanee?
I told her i’d take the responsibility and she replied “You came after thinking about it.”

Q: So everyone supports you?
I think they have various thoughts and don’t know what to do. The captain was also very worried. I want to talk to them again.

Q: There are lotsa fans who are shocked.
I really like my fans who love my non-idolish sides, even though i’ve hurt them. But i’ve never faked myself when i speak to them. From now, even if they criticise and hate me i will continue to face it and realise my dreams.

Q: I don’t know when you received a proposal but if you did, why didn’t you pull out of Sousenkyo?
I really wanted to work on it seriously either way, so i didn’t pull out. For the sake of making things exciting for the group, i chose to participate.

Q: You weren’t proposed to at that point in time.
We already had those feelings at that point in time.

Q: You received the proposal from the guy
Yes

Q: What about the ring?
I didn’t get it.

Q: So you decided to marry after the proposal?
Before that. I started to think about graduating after finding a person I like. But i wanted to participate in group activities. I couldn’t give up on it.  I was groomed by the group. I really like this group. But i worked hard on both sides.

 

Q: What do you like about him?
I don’t know. When we first met, i liked him. But i didn’t understand it at first. But i know it now.

Q: You aren’t pregnant?
No.

Q: Were you thinking about the love ban rule?
It’s just my perspective, but the love ban rule is something you decide for yourself.

Q: Do you know there are 2 sides to the discussion of idols in love?
Are you asking about my views? When i didn’t know about love, i put in all my heart into the Group, without time to think about love. But when i started to like someone, i thought that someone who is restrained in love, isn’t in a relationship when considering the love ban rule.

 

Q: You’d be shocked by your senior’s criticisms in normal circumstances.
I’ve always liked this group so to have poured water on an event the senpais have built up, i’m really sorry about it.

Q: You didn’t think that they’d react like that?
I was already prepared for all the criticisms. Not that i didn’t think about it, it’s just that i wanted to say it more.

 

Q:You didn’t pull back despite what others were saying?
Yes. I wanted to say it myself.

Q: When did you finally decided to say it?
When i decided to say it in Sousenkyo, i spoke with many people until the last minute, and checked with many people. A portion of them.

Q: What about (marriage) greetings with his parents?
Nope. They know we had intentions to marry when we dated, but they didn’t know i was going to announce it at that time.

Q: Both families knew you were dating?
Yes.

Q: When will be the official greetings?
Not official, but my partner has relayed the news.

Q: Engagement ceremony?
He promised it.

Q: What kind of family do you want to build?
A blissful one.

Q: What image do you have of a marriage?
I want to know about it. At first when i thought about it, this person is good. I wanted to be with him always so i wanted to get married.

 

Q: Does he want you to quit being an idol?
He respects my thoughts.

Q: It was a long distance relationship?
Yes.

Q:Has he seen your performances?
No.

Q:He’s said to be your Mum’s friend, but does he know you’re a celebrity?
I don’t know if i mentioned it to him when i first met him.

Q: How often did you meet since it’s a long distance relationship?
It was half and half. I had many schedules in Osaka, so we didn’t meet much. But we communicate.

Q: You met when you came to Tokyo for work?
He took care not to meet outside.

Q: About him being your Mum’s friend?
I don’t know. When we first met, it was my Mum’s birthday party.

Q: Have you thought that you’d be in love whilst in NMB, before meeting him?
Even if i wasn’t an idol, i don’t think i’d be in love or would get married.

Q: He’s your first boyfriend.
Yes

Q: Do you feel your heart pounding?
It did, even now.

Q: When did you first meet?
Before we started dating. We were acquaintances from before, but i don’t really remember it.

Q: When was the birthday party?
You might be thinking it’s just a politically correct answer, but we met some years ago.

Q: So it was a birthday party some years ago?
Erm…some years ago. Last last year’s November.

Q: So that whole year you were in love?
I respected him as a human.

 

Q: He asked you out?
Yes.

Q: You liked his brains and not his looks?
It was his appearance….i can’t explain it, it’s like he doesn’t have ulterior motives. Or the color of his eyes.

Q: When is your graduation?
It’s not decided.

 

Q: Do you want to get married this year?
I’m not in a hurry, i just want to be together. Marriage is something that can be done anytime. I will discuss it and decide.

Q: What activities will you do from now?
I will work my hardest.

Q: What’s one thing you’ll want to do definitely?
Talk with all the members

Q: Will you be okay for this weekend’s handshake event? You’ll probably be criticised alot.
This is natural. I will speak properly with everyone.

Q: You wanted to aim for undergraduate studies, but why idol activities?
-Kinda just talked about her passion for NMB-

Q: Do you have any regrets for treasuring your own feelings?
Yes. It’s not like i have no regrets. I’m reflecting. I will take on all the reactions. It was good to say in my own words.

Source

My thoughts:

My first impression of Riripon from years back was – she is someone who knows how to media play like Sashihara. She was not a yet that crafty, but someone whom i thought was desperate enough for success and recognition. I attributed that to her background (fallen princess of a rich family). 

The Sousenkyo announcement was yet another living proof of that hunger. Using her “philosophy” as a shield, she claims that a restrained love isn’t a relationship and therefore she didn’t break any rules. In order not to make herself look like a sinner, she re-packaged an apology into a marriage announcement forcing others to congratulate her instead. 

To cap it off, she still managed to give herself a glorious send-off(“oh they wanted me to stay but i promised to graduate”) plus retain her career as a talent, all the while donning a straight face. 

What a scary girl. She’s totally on another level.

I wonder how many fans believe in her “sincerity” and “philosophies”.

 

Shingo, Kusanagi & Goro leave J&A, possibly rejoining Iljima for China advancement

The trio will leave Johnny’s at the end of their contract in September and will possibly be rejoining ex-manager Iljima for China advancements. Iljima is supposedly now with a Chinese affiliated company and will be working with influential people in the Chinese movie industry. There are reports that the trio have visited China over several occasions so it’s likely they will be appearing in Chinese movies.

Source

If this is true, these guys are either doing it becos Johnny’s is blacklisting them from the industry, or because of the money. China’s productions are so lacking that they often spend big bucks for overseas stars to make a cameo. The only Japanese stars i’ve seen accepting these offers are expired artistes like Akanishi Jin or Yamapi. But SMAP is way too high class for China productions!

SKE48 to release a bikini single in July

Titled “Igai ni Mango!” (“Unexpectedly Mango”), the MV was filmed in water paradise Penghu, off mainland Taiwan. Center is fresh rookie Obata Yuna. Only jacket covers have been released so far.

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The covers are very tacky for a beautiful place like Penghu. Maybe they used an intern to design it. However, this seems to be a long awaited summer single that 48 fans would get excited about.

Covers for the regular edition look better.

Image result for ske48 意外にマンゴー

Image result for ske48 意外にマンゴー

igai ni mangoigai ni mango2

[AKB48 Sousenkyo]Reactions to Sutou Ririka’s marriage announcement

ririka

  • Oshima Yuko apologises for using vulgarities to express her anger at Ririka.
  • Takamina called it a risky move. She’s also angry about management not doing anything despite knowing very well what reactions would follow, assuming management knew about it beforehand. (Source)
  • Sayanee says she can’t comment much yet but considering the trust and what she knows of Riripon, she cannot entirely blame for her what she did.
  • Milky likes Riripon and would be worried if she’s not happy. (Source)
  • Sashihara first said she’d support Ririka but backtracks in another interview saying “idols should remain idols onstage“. Insiders call her out for being routinely superficial.
  • Riripon is questioned by media at the airport but she did not say anything. She wore a T-shirt emblazoned with “DAMN”. It is seen as a challenge to what Yuko thinks of her.
  • Nogizaka46 decided to walk the flowery path by commenting on Mayuyu’s impending graduation. (Source)

[AKB48 Sousenkyo]HKT48 Sashihara feigns tears and begs fans not to ditch AKB48

“Because of these incidents(outdoor concert cancellation), the AKB now is losing trust and i’m really afraid of fans leaving. With my friend graduating, i’m really worried about the future. We will work hard so pls don’t ditch AKB!”

Warning: Ending part is a ‘lets give this a touching ending’ skit but in fact it will make your skin crawl

I’m disgusted with yet another superficial speech from Sashihara. The problem with AKB doesn’t begin with a concert cancellation or a gradation. Of cos, what would she know when she doesn’t even see the problems with herself?