Sashihara on her most treasured member Sakura “I was the one who raised her.”
In the after concert of AKB48 Group 2015 Senbatsu Sousenkyo, Sashihara Rino declared that Miyawaki Sakura was the most important member to her.
Miyawaki Sakura is the 2nd member from HKT48 to rank in Kami7. Commenting on this, Sashihara said “It’s Kami7, right Sakura? I think i’m the one who raised you!” Sakura looked troubled by this comment and laughed bitterly.
After that, Miyawaki also revealed a tidbit about her 4 year old brother’s reaction to her ranking. “My brother has a girlfriend…Somehow she also congratulated me and he acted all cool about it.”
Background of SKE48’s rise in Sousenkyo
AKB48 41st single will see a huge influx of members from SKE48 participating due to their great performance in Sousenkyo this year. A total of 27 members including SNH48 Miyazawa Sae have ranked in. Behind this is the hidden story of passionate SKE fans and their anger at SKE’s management.
Helmed by Matsui Jurina and Matsui Rena, the group whose popularity is right behind AKB has the least media exposure in the entire 48Group. NMB48 and HKT48 have their own TV shows in their hometowns, but SKE48 has none. Even HKT48, the youngest group in the franchise, has regular shows in the Kantou area.
Other than their theater shows, fans also think SKE48 has too little live events in Nagoya. NMB48 and HKT48 have already gone on tours within 2 years of debut. But it took 7 years for Team KII of SKE48 to go on a concert tour. “Because SKE48 does not have live shows, the fans only have Sousenkyo to spend their money on,” said one fan.
SKE48 also has a rule whereby members are not allowed to take on solo activities. This is because the flagship group AKB48 takes priority. In AKB’s handshake events, the sister groups are all expected to take part so that their reputation of “CD million sellers” can be kept. Because SKE48 members are occupied with these, fans think its the reason why concerts can never happen.
These reasons have ignited the fire in fans’ hearts, leading to the their great showing in this year’s Sousenkyo. How will the management repay the fans?
Akimoto Yasushi scraps original plans for 41st single because of Sashihara’s win
According to the Akimoto Yasushi’s messages posted in SNS application 755, it was revealed that the song for AKB48 41st single will take on a different style because Sashihara had won.
“Yoshimasa, Sashihara is No.1 so the style will change. I need something that is different from the demo tapes i’ve received up till now,”said Akimoto in instructions to the music composer.
Sashihara herself has requested for version 2 of “Koisuru Fortune Cookie”.
Sashihara on Chinese fans
“When we talk about China votes it sounds bad. Not only me, other members have it too. It sounds bad, but i feel China’s favor.”
When asked if she sees China fans in her handshake events,she replied “They really exist, 20% of them are from China.”
Misc interviews from Oricon
Q:What will your next year be like?
Akimoto told me “Even if you are first you won’t be center for subsequent songs.” I will enjoy the next 3 months and use it for myself.
Q:Where would you like to shoot your MV?
Somewhere in Oita. My house is nearby so i can return home.
Q:When will you graduate?
I can’t confirm but if I’d stay for as long as possible.Like Kojiharu san..but my looks won’t allow me to do that.
Shinoda Mariko reveals she voted for Takamina
Shinoda Mariko had apparently voted for AKB48 Group Manager Takahashi Minami for this year’s elections, and had sent her a message over 755(mobile app) to inform her. In return, Takamina said “You are too kind, Mariko sama.”
Fellow graduated member Maeda Atsuko made a surprise appearance during the Sousenkyo to present her with flowers. Itano Tomomi and Akimoto Sayaka also sent her encouraging messages.
Miyazawa Sae says this is her last Sousenkyo?
This was supposed to be my “last” Sousenkyo. There’s no deep meaning to the word “last”, but no one knows what will happen after 1 year. The Sousenkyo is an annual event where fans come together to determine ranks and votes. I don’t want to hastily decline participation without warning, so i’ve already told everyone that this would be the “last”.
I made a clear aim this year — to get my highest ranking ever and Kami7. Even though i didn’t get into Kami7, i received my highest rank together with a personal best in votes. This is a beautiful end.
Rest is just words of gratitude
Who will win if Sousenkyo implements a 1 person 1 vote system?
According to Sashihara herself, 20% of fans come from China.
“Rumors of the ‘chinese bombs’ started from long ago. This year, a picture of a China fan buying 10,000,000 Yen worth of CDs to vote for Sashihara made its rounds on the Internet, causing a heated discussion. Amongst the fans, it is said that they are aware of ‘rich wotas’ who are willing to do that much for Sashihara. Her confidence is probably due to that.” said a writer for idol magazine.
In recent years, the Sousenkyo has become an event where rich wotas can influence the rankings, resulting in other fans being rather apathetic.
“These are Japan’s idols, but the results is being decided by the rich in China. The small votes are like trash. Honestly this is becoming stupid,” says a veteran fan in his 40s.
With this system, you can’t say that the rankings in Sousenkyo equates to popularity. What happens if a 1-person 1-vote system is implemented? The same writer makes his predictions.
“Many will nominate Watanabe Mayu but she received 35,000 votes from China as reported by Chinese media, so she’s also supported by rich wotas. Kashiwagi Yuki is known for her reputation as a Handshake Queen and in comparison has less China votes. With her ranking in 2nd this time, she’s most certain to win. Dark horse would be Yamamoto Sayaka. In the magazines which feature 48Groups on their covers, hers sell the best,followed by Kashiwagi and Shimazaki.As magazines are cheap, it is a good barometer to gauge popularity.”