It’s been a few weeks, but I’m back on the beat.
I feel like I should be more surprised by this than I am, but it almost feels like Morning Musume has remained unchanged for even longer to me. Maybe it has something to do with all of the changes that have happened elsewhere in H!P over the same time frame — check out Angerme’s lineup circa June 2019; or Juice=Juice’s; Kobushi Factory was still active; Beyooooonds had not yet debuted — but it feels closer to three years than two. Short of a major scandal or Masaki Sato packing it in due to her health issues, this cast is a lock to break MM’s all-time record for longest unchanged lineup. I’ve been pretty up front about my desire for some of MM’s longer serving members to move on, so I won’t belabor that point here, because there is something cool about seeing history made, even in a sphere of interest as niche as H!P.
I always figured that an H!P idol being touched by Corona-chan was inevitable, because I’ve always believed that we’re all gonna get it at some point. As we’re learning that the vaccines are more akin to booster shots than to what we generally understand vaccines to be, I’m even more convinced of this. I hope Layla recovers quickly and fully, and that no others in her circle were afflicted.
I wouldn’t normally comment on one of these posts, but this one does carry some significance to me personally. “The☆Peace!” was MM’s first single to be released after I became a fan, and it’s still one of my favorites. The context of the video being a “fuck you” to the guy who tried to extort money from Up Front with bathroom stall photos of the members is just legendary, and cemented my love of all things Hello! Project.
I know I’m coming dangerously close to trying to make “fetch” happen, but Ka-Ichi Feeling is real, dammit! This post from Juice=Juice n00b Arisawa Ichika is pretty much par for her odd course, and is further evidence that she’s impossible to dislike. This is what I was talking about in my post about the new member additions when I said that idols who start out closer to adulthood tend to be more relatable to fans. Every moment Ichika — or rather, Ka-Ichi, as she does not yet seem to have an official nickname — spends on camera is a meme waiting to happen, and the fact that she’s aware of that and willing to play into it by making herself the butt of jokes is all the more endearing. I think she’s going to be very popular.
I meant to pimp this project before, but there’s still time to participate, so I’m pimping it now. I’ve seen a lot of H!P related fan gift projects in the last 20 years, but this one really is the best of them. Usually it’s sending a huge box of gifts from fans to the girls, which is cool, but this is so much more personal. It’s a keepsake that will almost certainly be more meaningful to the members than a collection of disparate gifts, and it’s something I can see them going back to during times of nostalgia long after they’ve graduated. And for us fans, participation costs only the time it takes to write about our favorite concert and performance. If you’re a fan of MM, do check out the link in the tweet. I really love this project.