As The World Turns – Morning Musume Edition


Niigaki Grad Crowd

Last night Niigaki Risa & Mitsui Aika graduated from Morning Musume amidst a sea of purple and green glow sticks. Neither have been my favorites in recent years (Especially Aika) so for me it was mostly a fond farewell to Gaki-san and good riddance to the walking wounded that was Aika.

I perhaps have more affection for Niigaki who was always a happy go lucky type of character in the grand cast of Morning Musume. She was also probably one of the more gifted vocally. Perhaps under rated considering that during recent times the Takahashi & Tanaka tandem (& then Tanaka & Sayashii) got the lion’s share of the vocals. But she stepped up when called to duty. The high notes that start Mr. Moonlight will always be owned by her.

The one thing I will always remember about Gaki’s time in Morning Musume is her hair. That’s kind of weird right? Maybe it’s the period of bad styling where she had that way too short cut that made her look like she had permanent helmet hair that traumatized me.

I preferred her with longer hair as it fit her face more. I have always stated among my fellow Hello! Project friends that once Gaki got a consistently good hairstyle she would graduate. And I was right in a way.

While her time as leader of Hello! Project and Morning Musume was short and uneventful she did bring stability to Morning Musume during the breaking in period of generations 9 and 10 allowing some of them to blossom and break out of their shells to become the lovable idols they are today.

In the end Gaki was a solid, reliable hand in Morning Musume. And while it would have been way more fitting to graduate with her BFF Takahashi Ai, it’s nice that she got her own well deserved send off.

Hopefully she won’t vanish into obscurity like many other graduates with her shift into acting. I’m pretty sure she’ll be called back in to the lines of fire for the next rounds of Dream Morning Musume or whatever nostalgic throwback that UFA can think of to make more money off their existing fan base.

All Hail Queen Sayu!

As I had hoped, Michishige Sayumi is now the queen bitch of Morning Musume. The youngins best practice their Usa-Chan peace as that may become the official salute of the group now. My question is, who is going to spread the rose petals in front of her feet as she walks?

Michishige Sayumi

And isn’t this better than Tanaka being leader? No offense to you Reina fans, but this is exactly the type of leadership that the now much younger Morning Musume needs. After all Sayu seems to be the most mainstream media friendly and if the path is to lead to more “Fun Musume” such as that crazy long winded title double a-side on Takahashi Ai’s last single then this is a logically sound choice by my hero (& yours) Tsunku & the UFA powers that be.

11th Generation Auditions

Momusu 11th Gen Audition Banner

Also announced last night, applications are now being accepted for the Morning Musume 11th generation auditions. I’m too lazy to read the rules but I’m assuming they’re pretty much the same from the last time. I don’t want to be a downer in this time of celebration & change but is this really necessary?

I may have been one of the more vocal critics of the 9th generation auditions but they turned out alright (Even if I can’t name most of them.) and the 10th generation are ones who seem to have picked up the whole Musume thing quicker than I had expected. So with all that to work with why have another audition?

Of course I will be in the minority (As always) since I don’t crave the blood of young girls constantly like a lot of fans who just screamed, “FUCK YEAH! 11TH GEN! (insert egg/kenshuusei who failed audition the last 10 times here) better make it this time!”

To be honest it’s a losing battle even trying to discuss anything like this with other fans when they all go into wota blood lust mode. All they see is fresh meat & nothing else. So instead trying to have an intelligent conversation I’ll just hang back & cover the 11th gen auditions in the similar way I have for the 10th. Open & brutal with zero sugarcoating.

I would like to point out that I correctly picked the winners for the 10th generation so perhaps there is also a bit of personal pride in picking winners out of these things that will keep me interested. With that said, bring it on. All I can hope for is one decent vocalist & then let the rest be prospects/diamonds in the rough.

About Greg 994 Articles
Greg is the creator, administrator, editor, code monkey, overlord and general jack of all trades at Selective Hearing. He can be found lurking among the overseas Asian pop fandom and bumming around Japan every year for some reason or another.