FOREVER LOVE… y’mean Tokkaiko 2, right?

November 17, 2008

C-ute’s new PV is not spectacular, but it’s still pretty damn good. I’m loving that they sprung some surprise outfits on us for the dance shot. I’m also loving that no one even bothered to hide the fact that Berryz got the crappier computers for their PV. It speaks volumes about the current placement of these two groups within H!P’s priority list. Berryz has basically become a joke, sort of like Melon Kinenbi did when they released their infamous PV for Onegai Miwaku no Target. I mean, look at this:

bettercompy

Chisato: Ha ha ha! OMG, the girl in that picture’s totally got octopus hair! Lol, what a lame-o!

Kanna: … Wonder if I should tell Chisato that that’s one of her official UFA pics from this PV? They basically photoshop her into unrecognizeability anyways. so it shouldn’t matter, but…

Erika: Mai, how many times must I tell you? Stop trying to unhook my bra in public. Just wait till later, okay?

Mai: C’mon, baby. No one’s watching! Just for a few minutes!

Airi: And that, my friends, is how you download free porn.

Maimi: Wooooow! Airi, who knew you had such hidden talents?

Saki: Hey, that girl in this hentai kinda looks like Yaguchi Mari! Only her name’s Yauchi. What’s this called again? Shining Musume? Funny, that almost sounds like… Oh.

I’m pleased, in general, with how the girls look. The menswear theme is really cool, and I’m loving the boots. With the alternate outfits, each of the girls gets a somewhat menswear inspired feminine outfit, expect for Airi, who’s wearing a particularly attractive little capelet which is nevertheless the aboslute worst thing to be wearing when dancing. It kills her movements. I think I’m the most in love with Mai’s clothes. The remind me of Kanashimi Twilight.

kanna-and-chisatush

The worst outfit award HAS to go to Kanna. She has this odd overall outfit in a really heinous plaid. It totally doesn’t fit around her hips, and it makes her torso look way too short. The hat and the scarf just make it that much worse. She ends up looking like she’s gotten confused as to whether she’s being Orphan Annie or one of the factory boys from Oliver.

However, something else stood out to me about this screen-shot, something far more interesting than the fact that whoever chose Kanna’s clothes was obviously high:

chisatushOMG, ChisaTUSH for the win!

maimifacetouch

Like this move? Takahashi taught it to me. It’s really original and makes me look distraught and hurt, lol!

Maimi was, as usual, looking stunning. For me, Maimi herself isn’t physically my type. She’s pretty, but not in a way that I really care about. But something about the way she carries herself really appeals to me. Maybe it’s because that she’s actually a UFA built cyborg that she carries herself like that, the original having been absorbed by the ManoCreature ages ago.

airibitch

On your knees. Lick my boots. Curl my hair. Kill Momoko and Miyabi so I can go solo.

Somehow… Airi… really made me happy in this one.

Maybe it’s because she knows how to download internet porn. -shrugs- You decide.

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No matter how you look at it, Chisato is gorgeous in this PV. But her hair… her hair…

How much hair cement did it take to make it look like someone had basically stuck an octopus to her scalp and called it a day? Whoever thought of this style should be shot (although I don’t mind the bangs).

nakkiewfl

Nakki, oh, Nakki. What happened here? You look like some Mexican guy, and not the sexy kind that have big muscles and looks good when they’re sweating. The scrawny kind with the thin little mustache that tries to sell you things on the side of the street and is wearinga stained tank top and has too much hair gel in their hair.

But, uh, you looked great dancing. In fact, that purple blazer of yours in the alternate outfit version was fantastic. I tried the exact same thing on today while shopping at Banana Republic.

It looked better on you.

Dammit.

kannafl

Kanna, oh, Kanna…

Whatever Saki did wrong, you did right. You’re breathtaking in this PV, in that special lesbian way that only you can be.

maimai

Mai looks like a sickly child here. Like the kind you see carrying an inhaler in their fanny pack, along with their hanky and handi-wipes, just in case.

Er, yeah, Mai. Better luck next time.

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If any of you needed proof that Erika is part woodchuck…

Erika was mostly just Erika here. Kinda out of place, but still sexy. I abslolutely loved her curly hair during some parts of the dance shot. She looks so much better that way.

(Oh, the reason for the title of this was because the song, the PV, the dance, the line distribution, all of it basically makes me thing of Tokaikko Junjou/ That’s not bad. I love that song and PV.)

I give this PV a 8 out of 10, and the song an 8.5 out of 10, because I’m just that great.

Now if you’ll excuse, I’m going to go stare at ChisaTUSH some more.

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I wasn’t gonna do this, but…

August 13, 2008

I’m really not in the mood to blog right now (working on a farm all day’ll do that to you. YOU try coming up with something insightful to say about J-pop cuties after mucking out goat stalls and restraining struggling calfs all day), so I wasn’t planning on reviewing Buono!’s new PV. But on reading a few other reviews, I couldn’t help but become incredulous over the fact that no one has gone all spazzy over the adorable Momo/Airi glomp. I mean, no one’s even pointed it out (as far as I’ve read). So, Usa-chan takes it upon herself to right this wrong! So, on with the review!~

Momoko:

For me, Buono! is Momoko. Let me specify: Airi is the looker. Miya is the talent (one could arguably switch those adjectives). But there are good looking girls and sexy girls in dozens of other groups out there. Momoko, with her special monkeyish brand of goofiness, is what makes Buono! what it is. Everything about her just amuses me. Her odd expressions when the jenga tower almost falls (she reminds me of an owl there), her strange grin… it is all so buono. (PS: My new Gaia signature is this picture:   )

Miyabi:

Miya. Holy crap. She became hot in this PV. I love her hair like that, not just the color, but the style. She looks megatons better with her hair down and in her face. But somehow… there are no standout Miya Moments here. Momo gets her hug, the mosquito thing, Airi gets all those little “serious” close-ups… Miya has to work hard to stand out. And she suceeds, to an extent.

Airi:

If Miya became hot, Airi became stunning. I love seeing her more serious like that. Her expressions suit seriousness better, right? Right! I also love love love her dance outfit. I’d wear that shirt, and I have a weakness for girls with braids. Braids are so under-used within H!P! bring back braids, dammit!

The Dance:

This is a typical Buono!-ey dance, full of energy and fun. But somehow, this one has a lot more personality than Kiss! Kiss! Kiss! did. I love the lady-like little arm… flicks. I don’t know what to call those. You all know what I’m talking about, right?! Th eonly other standout part of the dance, for me, was how much more exaggerated Momo’s movements were. She sticks her hips out more. It makes her look like a better dancer than the others!

The Concept:

Games…. ‘kay. I like this PV the most out of any of Buono!’s other stuff. The bright colors and white background make for a really pleasing effect for the eye. Having the girls piss off those random musicians was brilliant. The random murdering of the mosquito? Not quite so sure about that. Also, the wierd pop-up head game in the end creeped me out. Disembodied heads much?

And now, the reason for this review:

How can you not love that?! Look at that! look at Momo’s cuteness! When I saw that, I suddenly really wanted to be friends with Momo, just so I could get a hug like that.

In All:

I give this PV a 10!


This. Is. AWESOME.

July 25, 2008

Hi, boys and girls! Have you seen the PV for Edo no Temari Uta II yet? If you haven’t, you’re missing out, because from the set to the dance to the girls themselves, this PV is amazing. I can barely organize my thoughts to actually review this correctly, so first I’ll just talking about the girls themselves, relatively safe territory.

The very first thing we see in this PV is Airi looking, for lack of better words, magical. I’ve recently come to terms with Airi in my head. I just can’t hate her, and in allowing myself to NOT hate her, I’m actually finding myself liking her. Huh. Throughout this entire PV, Airi is just a bit of cotton candy. She’s fun to watch, but there’s no real substance. But this is J-pop. Who needs substance? Airi’s costume is quite a lot shorter and more revealing than the others, but I’m okay with that. Like I said, I’ve come to terms with her being the star of C-ute, and if that means tiny costumes, that’s fine. The lack of fabric actually comes in handy for her when they do the slower parts of the dance (the little back-and-forth steps, the head rolls, etc.) because it shows off her great posture.

Maimi is… Maimi makes… I’m not sure what to say! Everyone in the PV is having fun, but Maimi seems like she’s really THINKING about it. In a lot of other idols, that would come across as forced and fake, but not Maimi. She’s just great. Her deep vocals acually suit this song and she doesn’t sound as though she’s struggling at all. The only low point would be her costume, which reminds me of a character from The Nutcracker (Y’know, the lady whose children all run out from under her skirt), but somehow, she pulls it off. Also, Maimi + Red = hot.

Gotta love her expressions an acquaintance of mine made an interesting comment about Yajima: “Red–> Definitely seemed like she’s usually the leader and doesn’t want to give that up.” That’s right. Yajima is giving off Leader-vibes.

Erika and her impossibly high cheekbones are difficult to screencap in this PV. All those shadows! That aside, Erika brings the sexy into the PV. She just is a sexbomb. It’s been said before, of course, but I wish she’s stress that more. Her voice is typical for her, kinda squeaky but not bad. But her outfit. Wow. It’s the best outfit of the whole PV, for sure. I would wear that in real life (yes, but Usa-chan, you’ve worn an evening gown to school! You’d wear anything as long as it’s pretty…).

Holy crud, I’m even liking NakaSaki in this PV? I can’t help it! She’s sooo cute. She reminds me of when a young chick when it’s all yellow and fluffy. Even her little Mouse-voice sounds good here. And her dancing is somehow… coy? I think it’s coy. Yes. Her smile goes a little funny in some parts, though. And not good-funny.

Mai was just kinda… Mai for me in this PV. Not bad or good. Just… Mai. Her singing was fine, and her costume was cute, although it seemed more, well, costumey than the others, and of course, she was ADORABLE. But, I’m actually a little worried about The Future of Mai. She’s going to have to stop relying on being the youngest in the group at some point, because pretty soon being the youngest will mean that she’s 14 or 15, and that’s not really all that young in Idol years.

Kanna. Kanna Kanna Kanna! This PV totally cemented her as my #2 C-utie. She just… flirts the entire time. And has fun, and draws you into the PV. I love her expression in the dance-shot right after her line. Like “Yeah, I’m singing for YOU.” -fangirl sigh-

Ah, Chiisan. With your voice that sounds like a 80-year old woman who has smoked a pack a day her whole life… and still just so happens to be a kick-ass singer. Chisato’s having so much fun in this PV. She looks like she’s just having the time of her life, SO happy to finally have a line. And of course, she nails it. I love her crazy expressions. I’m a little disappointed by her outfit color. They manage to wash out someone as tan as Chiisan.  Impressive!

Now for the set, which I believe is what really makes the PV. The set manages to be dark and dreamlike, yet still fun. It’s like a carnival at night, inhabited by spirits wearing cute outfits. The darkness of the background and the bright lights actually reminds me a bit of the Anataboshi set. But this one is many, many times better. In fact, thanks to the set, I can say that this is one of the few H!P singles that I really want to physically own. I want this single!

Score: 9.5/10. Half a point off for the length. I want more Kanna goodness!


Saki, you sexy beast!

July 16, 2008

Alternate title: So, Risako Didn’t Get Beaten to a Berryz Pulp, But After Watching this Concert, I Think She Deserves It.

WARNING: This will be a LONG review.

The Berryz vs. C-ute concert was kindly uploaded to Youtube a little while ago, but I’ve just gotten around to watching it. Each video is about ten minutes long and contains 2-3 songs. I’ll be reviewing every single one! YAY! For each section, I’ll also talk about who stood out, whether good or bad, and whatever else crosses my mind.

1. Huzzah, the opening! And… one of my least favorite H!P kids songs so far, Darling I Love You. There’s nothing interesting or catchy about this song to me. In fact, for some reason it just kinda REALLY annoys me to listen to it. So I’m going to pretend that the next song was actually the opening.

2. Special Generation is a great concert song. It’s fun to watch, the girls get right into it, and the wota are always really enthusiastic in their cheering for it. One thing I’ve learned to look out for when this is performed is the choreography in which Yurina and Momoko touch hands in the air (in this clip, it’s around the 6 minute mark). Just before they let go and Momoko sings “Suki to,” Yurina always mouths something to Momo, and Momo always looks even more under the influence of helium. It’s adorable, really.

3. The next song is Ookina Ai de Motenashite. It was around this point that the energy seems noticeably low. But it’s the beginning of the concert, so I can forgive them.

Stand outs for Part One: So far, no one’s really gotten into it (?)… but Momoko and Yurina both grabbed my attention, not just because they flirt during SpeGe, though that had a lot to do with it, for sure…

4. Part Two begins with a hilarious little video of each of the members suiting up for “battle.” I adore that Maasa and Kanna are their group’s leaders. And I LOVE how Yurina’s special “skill” is her height. That green outfit… she’s the Green Giant (I should be shot for that one). Good lord, Chinami’s got sexy legs. Is it just me, or is C-ute running MUCH faster than Berryz in the group-running scenes?

5. Member Introductions… pah. As if the wota didn’t know the girls already. Furthermore, I think tha- HOLY CRAP, SOMETHING’S EATING MIYABI’S HEAD! Quick, someone get a bucket of water! Kryptonite! A used towel! No, wait, someone go get some HAIR SPRAY, stat!

Oh, and I love Okai’s outfit.

6. Namida No Iro isn’t my favorite song, but I do love the dance. It’s fun to watch and very interesting. Throughout this whole performance, I can’t keep my eyes off of Kanna. She is absolutely spot-on with everything she sings, her expressions, her posture, it’s all great (She retains this throughout the concert, actually). Airi and Maimi do fine with their vocals, as usual. Hey… why do C-ute get those cute, somewhat-matching, modern looking clothes while half of Berryz get plaid lumberjack shirts? Shouldn’t Kanna be the one in a lumberjack outfit?

Standouts: Kanna and Chinami. Kanna, as stated, is solid not just in this clip but throughout the concert. And Chinami… Chinami’s got those killer legs.

7. I love this song! I love Munasawagi Scarlett, but not live. They always skip Chinami’s line, my favorite part of the song, and there’s just never enough ENERGY. They need to practically spit out the words. Another sore spot for me is the Miya/Momo duo line after the intense guitar solo. Their voices just don’t blend at all. but Yurina’s practically leaking sweetness all over the stage. So all is well in my little Berryz kingdom…

Miya Hair Check:

This might look like an innocent dance move, but in reality, if she lets go, it’ll explode.

8. I really am terrified of Tsunku’s voice at the start of La La La Shiawase no Uta. And I don’t like the beginning of it, or the middle, or, really, the end. But I do like the way that the crowd can easily interact with the girls in this song. Check out how simple a dance the chorus has, and how easy it is for the glowsticks to dance along. Nice. Maimi is fantastic here, all smiles and sparkles and… Maimi.

Miya Hair Check:

Is it… getting… BIGGER?!

9. Dschinghis Khan is a Chinami song. No two ways about it. She dominated the PV, and she’s dominating this, too. As for the vocals, well… Risako sounds like crap, Miya sounded really nice, and Momo sounds like a helium creature.  But one with good tone and control. Yurina’s still oozing cuteness, so good for her.

Standouts: Maimi was rather nice, and Yurina.

10. I really like Tokaikko Junjou live, and this was a great performance. Airi in particular had great vocals and her performance level has noticeably improved from the start of the concert. She did really well with that chest-popping move right after the bridge. Mai’s hair, I’m sorry to say, is bordering on Miyabi-like proportions, but the kid makes up for it in energy. She’s like a jack russel terrier, or something. If you’ve never seen one of those in action… Ah ha ha ha… ahem. And check out Kanna during Airi’s final line. I’m going to be singing her praises a lot during this review, because she’s constantly smiling and giving it her all, just like that.

11. I feel like this (Tsukiatteru no ni Kataomoi) is the song in which Berryz really starts getting their act together as a GROUP. They’re really solid in this performance. HOMG Risako makes the oddest, most awkward smile after her first line. It almost made me forgive her for sucking so much throughout the rest of the concert and for looking so awful in that shirt. Almost. This is also the first performance that inspired the title of this post. Saki begins pulling out the charm here, and it’s really fun to watch. I love her dancing during the instrumental break.

Standouts: Airi for vocals and Saki for sexy.

12. And then up comes Very Beauty… Oh. Mah. Gaki.

Risako, please. Please, just stop hurting my ears like this. Your performance here was sad, really. The “dancing” (slow walk down the stage) was half-hearted, your vocals… your vocals…

Airi. Thank you for trying to save this song from your friend. You almost did it. Well, at least you’re cute. I was right about you sounding good singing this song.

13. I was putting a lot of faith in the Bokura no Kagayaki performance. It contains all of my favorites from both groups, but aside from Chisato’s opening, I was disappointed. I mean, I’m all for Chisai getting lines, but couldn’t they have done a LITTLE bit more spreading around of lines? Most of all, I’m disappointed with Chinami. this could’ve been HER performance. It’s the perfect genki song for her, but she just wasn’t… there for me.

14. CAPTAIN YOU ARE OFFICIALLY AMAZING. Even though all she does is provide the sound effects, Captain is so cool and sexy throughout this performance of Sayonara Hageshiki Koi that she just owns the whole song, for me. This may, in fact, be my favorite performance of the whole concert. Maimi was also rather nice here, as was Miya. As a group, the only one who really doesn’t seem to fit here is Maimai.

Miya Hair Check:

It’s starting to look a little tired… maybe it mated with Mai’s hair-blob? That would explain Saki N.’s hair-do… well, hair-don’t.

Standouts: Saki. Saki Saki Saki Saki… SAKI. That’s Captain Saki, by the way.

15. I don’t totally understand Erika’s Tension Ageko character, but I still love her! I like how the wota get into the MC with the girls, and that makes this MC more fun. My friend and I now shout “used towel!” to each other whenever we see each other. And I certainly wouldn’t mind having Saki’s used towel… no, no, I’m not going to be a pervert. I’m younger then she is, darnit!

16. I was somehow really happy to have this song (That’s the Power) performed at this point in the concert, and whenever Erika interrupts with her “used towel” bits, I can’t help but smile. The atmosphere of this song is just so friendly and laid-back. It’s great. Well, more specifically, Erika is great.

17. See above paragraph, final sentence. Long live Do Don ga Don Ondou!

Standouts: This section is all about Erika, and it’s really nice. She proves herself to be a truly strong performer here. Buono! Stands out in that they’re conspicuously absent.

18. I really love Buono!, and their first single is by far my favorite. But somehow, the Eggs steal the show here. They’re soooo cute!

Miya Hair Check:

Oh, it’s starting to wilt a little…

19. Ouch, Miya had some difficulty in the beginning. And holy crap Airi, those shorts are SHORT. They’re practically panties. Shiny, black, panties. But Airi has really nice le-… Oh, what, the performance?! Yeah, that was pretty good. Nothing great or spectacular, though. The thing that really made this a good performance, however, was that the girls seem to take up with whole stage. They don’t make it feel static and stuck, like some of the other performances, regrettably, did.

20. ASDJKASFkl. Saki. Either Saki. Both Sakis. Whatever. I was totally not expecting them to just dance the whole time during Natsu Doki Lipstick, but I’m incredibly happy that they did. It sort of became a Saki Dance solo, with Maimi singing in the background. My second favorite performance of the concert, for sure. I can’t wait to see the Berryz footage, because that’ll be practically a solo shot of this dance for Captain.

21. Massara Blue Jeans is such a fun song! I’m constantly amazed at the stamina of these girls. Especially Maimi and Saki right now. Wow. Just… wow. And THEN the Berryz come in… SHUTUPRISAKO. Shutupshutupshutupkthx. Actually, her second line made me realize that this could be the PERFECT song for Risako. I mean, all she does is scream, and that’s all that this song requires.

Stand outs: The Sakis (mostly Captain because she’s just a sexy beast), and Airi’s shorts.

22. My first reaction to this performance was that Jiriri Kiteru is a great song to perform with lots of people. Everyone’s energy is through the roof, and the all look and sound great.

23. What the hell? This is barely an MC.

24. JUMP is an inspiring song, and when it’s sung by 14 cute girls in pretty costumes, it’s just that much better. Songs like this make a concert completely worth going to. The girls themselves do the song justice. Chisai’s “Wow!” was adorable.

25. My favorite H!P kids concert song, period, is Yujou Junjou OH Seishun. it’s so much better live than as an mp3, when the Berryz’ voices were still too young and squeaky to really fit the song. And right there confirming that opinion is Kanna, bundle of energy that she is. During the line “Yume nare donna toki mo”, she is completely performing the hell outta this song. Close behind her are Captain and Chinami. Captain is, I swear on my honor as a Yossy-fangirly, channeling the great Yoshizawa here. There’s a part where she points at the camera and just sort of raises her eyebrows, which nearly gave me a heart attack. If Captain started being a cool character within Berryz, I would be so happy. And Chinami, well, she always owns this song.

Stand outs: Everyone. Everyone is just great here.

26. This is just too precious. The H!P kids playing superheroes! Everyone is so adorable. Momo is especially cute with her “White is feeling a little blue” (or something like that) line. This whole MC is pure kitsch. I adore it, really. Maasa continuously cursing, Kanna and Maasa as the leaders, Airi being Airi…

Stand outs: That bat-monster thing. What IS it?

27. Warera! Berryz Kamen & C-utie Ranger. Maasa’s “big” solo is my new god, Kanna and Chisato should’ve gotten lines (especially Kanna, I mean, she’s the “leader”), and Captain is still incredibly managing to remind me of Yossy.

28. What a cute MC, damn this review is getting WAY too long! I’m just going to include the rest of the concert here: I can’t believe they ended with Sakura Chirari. What’s the point? It’s not energetic like Yujou Junjou, it’s not touching or inspiring like JUMP. It’s just… blah, although having Ganbacchae (the song that started it all!) as the ending background music was sweet and nostalgic. In all, this is one of the finest H!P concerts I’ve seen since becoming a fan.

Stand outs for the whole concert: In my mind, this concert was a great one for Captain especially. If she keeps this awesomeness up, she’ll be moving way up in my member rankings.

SO in the end, Berryz Kamen and C-utie Ranger teamed up and defeated their creepy bat-thing enemy. But in the end, we all know what the REAL enemy here was:


At least she didn’t wink.

May 28, 2008

Alternate title: Reina, get out of the way, I can’t see Saki. Or Maimi. Or Yuuka. Hell, I can barely see Ai.

I’ll keep my opinions brief. By the way, I don’t think I’ve stressed this enough, so, I HATE REINA. She’s right down there with Risako on my H!P list. The fact that Reina is in this group totally ruined it for me.

-Honestly, this PV was exactly what I was expecting. A crapload of Reina screentime, a few seconds of Saki and Maimi, and a nice but not too difficult looking dance.

-What surprised me was the lack of Yuuka-time. I thought that, as a cutie pie l’il Eggie-poo, she’d be getting a fair amount of screen time, but she gets next to nothing.

-Ai can best pull the feeling of this song/PV off, but she surprisingly gets very little screen time when compared with Reina. And mind you, I’m using Reina’s name with as much annoyance and condescension as possible. I am just awful at thinking up snappy insults and will thus leave her name as is.

-Sakitan, there are people who think you’re pretty! I certainly do. I really, REALLY wanted her to do something attention grabbing, like, I dunno, start breakdancing or drop-kick Reina or start waving around Risako’s dismembered head like it was the head of Medusa.

-This whole PV would gain +200 points in my mind if the awesome pairing of Sakitan and Maimi were given a dance battle during the bridge. Heck, even just having those two dancing together, without Ai, Reina or Yuuka doing anything to disrupt would make it better.