Rino Sashihara: “Idols don’t need to learn how to sing and dance”

18 Oct

Waratte Iitomo conducted an experiment where the regular hosts gave a live lesson to 100 gradeschoolers. Rino Sashihara’s class was titled “How to become a member of AKB” for the children who wanted to become idols. She said that there are 3 points to keep in mind if they wanted to join AKB. The first one is “There’s no need to practice singing and dancing”. Sashihara was originally an idol-otaku, but she bluntly says:

“Girls who can’t dance are cuter. They make you want to root for them”.
“Most idol fans these days are old men, right? These old men actually find the girls who can’t do anything cuter, and they’re happier when they tell a girl that ‘You’re totally no good!’. I think people are more attracted to idols who are giving it their all despite being really bad at it”.
And because of this, idol fans are split between their opinions. According to a woman in her 20s who used to be an AKB fan but is now a Momoiro Clover Z fan: “There may be truth in that, but I don’t think an idol herself should be saying that. It’s kinda irritating since it feels like she’s taking advantage of the weakness of her fans”.
A man in his 20s who hates AKB and is a Hello!Pro fan comments: “I actually understand that kind of feeling where you want to support a girl who can’t really do anything properly”.
Erina Ikuta of Morning Musume apparently said something similar to what Sashihara just said, but her fans feel that it’s a part of her character. “If a girl who obviously isn’t putting any effort says this, then you’d feel that she’s just trying put herself in the right. But I think that’s fine as long as you can see her efforts”.
On the Internet:
“Japan’s top idol said such a thing? wwww”
“That’s an insult to Johnny’s, Hello!Pro, and all the other idols.”
“I can’t believe Japan’s #1 group has this sort of a tepid opinion. I hope you’re all finsihed!”
“It’s definitely wrong if there are members who think that they can win as long as they persevere, especially since that group consists of 100s of members.”
“Those who look for singing and dancing talent will just go look for singers and dancers. Idols just need to be moderately good. That’s not what their fans are after anyway.”
After Sashihara’s class came Shingo Katori’s class on “How to become a member of SMAP”. He said, “Practice singing and dancing as if your life depended on it!”, which drew laughter from the studio.

6 Responses to “Rino Sashihara: “Idols don’t need to learn how to sing and dance””

  1. AndyM October 22, 2013 at 5:06 am #

    Sasshi, I just can’t help but smile about the things she says so bluntly. The person who writes here is quite the Sasshi anti (no problem about it, really, it’s your blog after all) but gotta say Sasshi’s growing on me ever since she won the election, she says things few idols dare to say. But some people like orthodox idols, others not so much 🙂
    Not sure if it’s sensible for her to say it out loud but I kinda see some truth in her words. AKB top members usually don’t sing or dance well yet they’re massively popular. You don’t need to be super talented to be a top member. Acchan or Mayuyu, for example, have lots of fans and not because of their singing/dancing talents I bet. They’re beautiful and it’s their good looks and being in management’s good graces that allow them to have huge fanbases. On the other hand, Wasamin is one of the members I remember having an extraordinary voice as an enka singer and she barely ranks in the sousenkyo.
    It’s a sad reality but that the way it is.

    • allthingsjpop October 30, 2013 at 2:22 am #

      Actually i did not write this article. It was taken from another site, if you check the source.

      But you’re right, i’m not a Sasshi fan. To me, an idol should build popularity through performances, not draw attention to yourself through other channels. Girls like Sasshi/SKE48’s Matsumura Kaori pounce on opportunities to comment on controversial topics to get some media exposure and make a name for themselves.In other words, they should be working as “talentos”, not idols. It’s alright if they continue to be in the 48 groups as long as they use their “talent” in a positive manner, but sometimes i see them suggesting/doing things which tarnish the image of other members or the group and i start to think if they are simply using AKB as a stepping board for their personal careers. For example, on a recent music show, the MCs asked Yukirin what role she would like to play for a day and she answered Takamina’s General Manager role. Sasshi immediately suggested that Yukirin had intentions to takeover Takamina in future, which got Yukirin flustered and she had to deny.On the Mecha-Ike episode, Sasshi grew angry and her face literally turned dark when the MCs teased her. Yuko had to step in to neutralize the awkward atmosphere when Sasshi started to retort. There are several “talkers” in AKB – Yuko/Takamina/Minegishi to name a few, but you don’t see them using it as tool to create controversies. I may have over-analyzed Sasshi, but i do feel she’s not suitable for an idol. She may have outshone the others in this year’s elections, but the elections have evolved into a big business and voting is not so innocent anymore.

      She may be right on idols not needing to sing and dance. I think in Japan, the groups with gimmicks are more refreshing…like Momoiro Clover Z. But personally i see Oshima Yuko as the true definition of an idol. I am a Mayuyu/Paruru fan btw.


      • T October 30, 2013 at 3:27 pm #

        Sousenkyo results aside, is Sasshi hated a lot among the akb48’s japanese fandom? And this sentence really intrigues me:
        “She may have outshone the others in this year’s elections, but the elections have evolved into a big business and voting is not so innocent anymore.” What do you mean by voting is not so innocent anymore? Are you referring to the bulk-buying of fans to vote for their oshis or speculating there’s shady business interfering with this year’s sousenkyo results? I’m by no means attacking you, just being curious is all. ^^

      • allthingsjpop October 31, 2013 at 12:40 am #

        Hmm i do believe she has alot of antis in the Japanese fandom, maybe not as much in the international fandom.

        For the elections, it’s a big business because companies/cities are now involved in the voting for commercial reasons. It makes one wonder how many votes are really fan votes. In the case of Sasshi, she had the Oita mayor and residents backing her up in the hope of boosting tourism. The Oita mayor created such a fanfare it looked like she was running for parliament. You may read more here: https://allthingsjpop.wordpress.com/2013/06/11/aftermath-of-akb48-5th-general-elections-reactions-to-sashiharas-win/

        Another theory which netizens always bring up is the backing from Sasshi’s agency Ohta Pro, which is also Acchan and Yuko’s agency. Rumors are that Ohta is keen to keep the no. 1 position within their agency after acchan’s departure…therefore Sasshi’s rise.

        A third theory is the backing from the 10 programs that Sasshi regularly guests in. A good rank will mean viewership for her programs..so no surprise if the tv stations/producers pulled some strings here.

        So u see the elections now are a event which corporations make use of to further their own interests..the results are not so accurate anymore altho fan support still plays a part in it. In fact, i wish Mayuyu can abandon her ambitions and graduate so she can find her own limelight as a solo artiste.

      • LigR December 17, 2013 at 2:07 am #

        the mind of a hater is interesting to analyze. You being a Sasshi hater and a Mayuyu oshi only see the former for her faults and the latter for her perfection lol


  1. Sashihara Rino HKT48: Seorang Idola Tidak Butuh Belajar Tentang Cara Bernyanyi dan Menari - November 24, 2013

    […] Source : allthingsjpop […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: