The preliminary results of the 5th AKB48 General Elections were unveiled at the Akihabara theater today, and shockingly, Sashihara Rino beat out hot favourites Oshima Yuko & Watanabe Mayu to clinch the first place! Although voting started only yesterday and these numbers aren’t indicative of the final results, fans expecting the usual rankings should start worrying.
– Sasshi leads the pack with twice the votes of Mayuyu
– Mayuyu overtaking Queen Yuko
– Kami7 (the top 7 regulars) are sparsely distributed all the way to Rank 20
– Unfamiliar names (Shibata Aya, Kobayashi Ami) ranking in
– Despite the Paruru hate, she seems set to become Kami7
Chart comparing the rankings last year vs this year.
(The initial rankings last year were actually very predictive of the final results.)
Is this the so called 世代交代? (Change of Generation)
Ever since first generation ace Maeda Atsuko graduated last year, this term has often been used to prepare fans for the rise of the younger generation. Yes, we did see alot of girls getting new titles like the “next generation ace”, but the media lineup has never changed much so what exactly is this 世代交代? Perhaps the results this year will define this.
The Sashiko Miracle
This girl, frankly speaking, is not pretty, can’t sing and just not idol material. However,she’s a good marketer and made use of her media appearances and blog to stand out. As a result, her ranking improved by leaps and bounds every year. The miracle seemed to have dissolved after she was hit by a scandal last year and was transferred to HKT48. But she used her marketing skills to promote HKT48, earning the group a successful debut and probably more new fans from Fukuoka. Did her efforts erase all the shame from her scandal? Probably.
We’re not sure how huge her fan base is, but i hope the Sashiko Miracle ends here and now. Personally, the last thing i’d want to see is this girl winning.
Excerpt of Members’ Reactions
Sashihara Rino: Is this a dream? I’m too happy for words. Thank you!
Itano Tomomi: I saw the initial ranking. Thank you! This is just the start!
Shinoda Mariko: This is just the first day. I’ll look forward to the end!
Kojima Haruna(shocked expression): I can’t forget the faces of my fans after the report today. You don’t have to apologize. Even though i’m very worried, lets work hard together.
Kashiwagi Yuki: I’m happy!Gotta aim higher so that fans can smile from the bottom of their hearts. Pls lookout for me!
Watanabe Mayu: No.2! Thank you! Lets get going!
Matsui Jurina: I’m so shocked. Thank you! This is just the start, but i hope that my ranking doesn’t drop..
Members missing from top 20
Well, unlike Sashihara Rino, Minegishi Minami seems to have taken a fall in popularity after her sleepover scandal. Ranked 26 with 4875 votes, it’s still not a bad position because even girls like Miyazawa Sae, Kitahara Rie, Takajo Aki are missing from the list. I guess her fast return to media promotions is giving her the necessary exposure to salvage her popularity.
Netizens in shock
“No.1 is not for Sashihara.”
“This must be a joke.”
“Take a good look! Sashihara? She’s ugly ya know?”
“She must have bought 120,000 copies for herself!”
“Kojiharu is No.20?I can’t believe it.”
“Who is No.8?”
“If Sashihara takes center, this will be the end of AKB.”
“I’m gonna buy more CDs to vote.”
“All the first generation members are out of Top10. Well, doesn’t this make everyone more anxious?”
If you are interested in purchasing the elections single “Sayonara Crawl”, click on the pics below to purchase!