Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Euroseason 2017: Who I think will qualify, and who I think won't make the cut

In just two months, the semi-finals and grand final of ESC 2017 will occur.

Here are my predictions for each semi-final's qualifiers...and non qualifiers. In order of how I think they'll place, to make it extra difficult for me. Also, this is my objective prediction, not my top, not my opinion. Keep that in mind.

Monday, December 12, 2016

My Thoughts on Morning Musume's 13ki, Updates on My Life, What's to Come for This Blog

こんにちは, salut, привет, HELLO, earthlings (or not-so-earthlings, if you're like me)! 
Long time no see, yeah?
Well, I've been quite busy, and that is my excuse ("Yeah, right, Calli, you're such a liar, you're just lazy!")
Okay, maybe you're right...a little bit.
But, to be fair, I do have many post drafts...just none of them actually posted.
Not to fret, of course I'll be doing my H!P all-encompassing A-sides ranking this year, just as I did last year. (Wow, has it really been a year? Time flies!)
Well, you all know how I like to separate things into subsections. So, let's get this show on the road!

Tuesday, March 29, 2016


That's right, folks.

Tsubaki Factory weren't done just yet with their debut indies single.

I figured there would be a rerecording of the song anyway because the original title had "(First Take)" in it, but I thought the rerecording would occur for their major debut, like Kobushi Factory did it.


The Tsubaki Factory ladies, in fact, are releasing their first indies mini album!

It's titled "SOUND + VISION Vol. 1"!  (Perhaps we can expect a Vol. 2 sometime in their career, or the title is just H!P trying to sound fashionable. Hopefully the former.)

The tracklist is as follows:

1. Seishun Manmannaka! (...Second Take???)
2. Kedakaku Sakihokore! (This was their second indies single, which was and still is a damn great song.)
3. 17sai (Moritaka Chisato cover) (If I remember right, this was the first song they ever performed!)
4. Cabbage Hakusho ~Haru Hen~ (Peaberry cover) (I initially thought it was a terrible song choice for Tsubaki, and I still do!)

Naturally, by reading the title of this review, you'll know that this review is focusing purely on "Seishun Manmannaka! (Second Take)." I'm just gonna keep the "(Second Take)" part there, because it seems correct to me.

So, all four songs have PVs on the DVD for the mini album! The mini album got released in a limited edition format at the SATOYAMA event on March 19th, but the actual release is on...May 18th! Seriously, that's such a long wait!

Luckily, some gentleman (who must have bought the mini album at the SATOYAMA event) was kind enough to upload "Seishun Manmannaka! (Second Take)"'s PV on YouTube yesterday!

Keep in mind this is Tsubaki's first PV ever, so I'm so happy to finally be seeing them in HQ form!

So, without further ado, let's begin the review!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016


Let's start. Here's the PV to follow along with:

Let the screencaps and commentary begin!

Now, some translations translate this as "The Cold Winds and Unrequited Love." Just a note. Anyway, it's a simple, clean-cut title screen. I like it.

We start off with Riho looking a bit disgusted, but it's probably just a bad screencap...wait, no, we already knew she was 100% done with being in the group...

She's reaching out to all her beloved wota who are dearly missing her.

I love shots like these; they really capture passion and the flowing motions of dance.

Riho delivering us a "420-blaze-it" look...

The current center surrounded by the two future centers. Foreshadowing much, UFP?

I've said it a million times, I'll say it again: Duu is the most gorgeous H!P member, even if my kami-oshi may be RioRio. And oh, do those lips look so tantalizing...I am her age and a female, it is not creepy!

I do think Mikicha will be the 12ki center, which I approve of. She's definitely the most talented 12ki.

Maachan is like her own secret weapon. Like, she knows exactly what she's doing 100% of the time. And she knows exactly when and how to use her charms in different ways.

Akanechin should try to look more sad in a sad song; work on your PV emotions, girl!

Harunan has those doughy hazelnut eyes that nobody can resist falling for...

OHaru definitely has the best visuals of 12ki, in my opinion, and she works the camera like a true professional. She cannot sing for a dime, but visuals are her strength.

Zukki's mole is so charming, I'll never get over that. The curly hair looked cute in this PV, but her straight bangs style she just obtained looks the best!

This is a really derpy photo of Ayumi, and for some reason, in close-ups, she always looks like she's staring into your soul.

Maria is like some sort of doll. I can understand how that would be appealing to others, but I just can't get into it myself.

It's funny. Eripon had to fake being sad for this PV, even though she's really happy because the center is leaving, and that will give her more of a chance to shine. Bet she was really pissed upon hearing the news that there will be 13ki auditions!

Then, don't! Don't go home! Meaning, don't graduate! Neither of you! Stay right there, missies!

Ah, you do, Sakura? Really? Well, then, let's go out for some "Morning Coffee" together, shall we? :)

Sakura, that's the wrong dance! You're not supposed to be doing the DJ booth scratch! That's for "TIKI BUN!"

Mizuki earned her nickname of "Fukuhime" well. Her whole demeanor is that of a princess. She speaks properly, and looks elegant as well.

Mizuki is having a derp attack over there, but the real reason I screencapped this one was because of Duu. I'm just going to pretend that is the gesture of her shoving me against a wall and kabedon'ing me :)

Riho in the center, just as we've become accustomed to in the past years.

More Riho reaching. "Oh no, now I won't have millions...ok, thousands of thirsty wota thirstily thirsting for me anymore!"

We have noticed you, for the past five years! You're the only thing management has allowed us to notice!

Riho channeling her inner zombie.


Riho working hard on the dance that probably took a lot of perfecting.

I absolutely love this shot; her body looks so graceful and flexible, like a feather.

THIS has got to be my favorite shot from all the dance scenes, though. Absolutely breathtaking. The pose, the lighting, the face. It looks like it belongs in a glamour magazine.

Riho feeling herself up. Please, not on camera!

She's pointing at me! She wants me to audition for 13ki! Well, too bad I'm white, overweight, live in America, and can't dance...

Eripon looks regal here, while Maachan looks deep in thought...

Harunan shines so much more than Ayumin in this shot, and that's an unbiased statement. Ayumi doesn't command the camera like Harunan does.

Renaissance Lady Duu stares off into the distance, thinking about her long-lost love Sayashi Riho...

Sakura fits her given name so well. Her grace, her voice, is all like a flower: a cherry blossom...

Miki pretending to console Akane, even though Akane and Riho weren't even all that close and Akane showed us smiling earlier rather than frowning...

Two beautiful women. I really love the set design in this shot.

Zukki longing for another "Oh my wish!" so she can be center again.

Fukuhime is going to take over lead vocals along with Sakura, and I'm not complaining, although I do think Maachan is a stronger vocalist than Fukuhime.

The two visuals of 12ki side-by-side.

What a gorgeous shot. Duu staring out the window, Fukuhime staring out into the right. Two exquisite beauties of Morning Musume.

Even though it's just a shot of hands holding, it shows MoMusu's unbreakable bond, even as members come and go.

Harunan charming us yet again with her chocolate eyes, tan complexion, and silky hair. I want to hear your voice, too, Harunan, because it's very nice, but you never get lines!

I just love shots with beams of light; don't you, too?

More beauty. It's like Riho is an angel surrendering to heaven, and that is her halo shining above her.

I love the sudden outfit change, but yet it remains in the same shot. H!P, your cinematography has been quite well-done this year.

Riho showing us her flexibility. I can't even touch my toes; I'd no doubt trip if I attempted this!

A blurry but artistic shot of Riho doing a...er, whatever that ballerina move is called.

She's praying, "Please get me out of this group ASAP!!!"

I took this shot mostly because it showcased the awesome set design, and also because it gives us more light shining on Riho as she strikes a natural pose.

Riho tries out the signature 80s mullet for a split second.

Eripon and Ayumi raising their hands in the background, like "I wanna be center!" "No, I raised my hand first!"

She's giving us a "you-knew-what-you-were-in-for" look. Yes, we know that if people stan Morning Musume, their hearts will be broken eventually. But the people who call you their kami-oshi cannot help it! Like I said today, your kami-oshi picks you, you don't pick your kami-oshi.

That dress really is a looker. Also, you can see Riho's hair being blown by the "wind" the song is referencing.

Zukki looks like a porcelain doll here, and I'm loving it.

A pure shot of Ayumi and Harunan, with raw emotions. I'll never forget what Harunan said upon the news of Riho graduating. She said Riho promised they'd travel together soon, but now all those dreams are shattered. As for Ayumi, she lost her dance rival, but also one of her best friends.

The Renaissance Ladies delivering princess-like looks, as per usual, and I'm adoring it, as per usual.

Is that actually...a tear welling up in Eripon's eye? No, I must be seeing things.

Well, they look really bored. Probably because neither of them were that close with Riho. Only Maria really seemed to be out of 12ki.

Speaking of Maria, there she is looking sad while OHaru models as usual...

This move does not look fitting with the choreography at all. It looks like a cheesy move someone would pull on a dance floor!

Riho surrounded by the future aces yet again, doing their things...

This was the shot that inspired the single cover, and I absolutely adore it.

RihoRiho giving her somewhat sorrowful goodbye gaze, and...



I absolutely adore this PV, and think it is one of Morning Musume's best of all time. The color schemes, yet simple, complement each other so well. The set design is extremely well-done, and you have to look closely to catch every aspect of the sets. I love the breeze running through the girls' hair, adding visualization to the lyrics. My favorite scenes are the duo scenes in the white room, and I like that each duo got different props and angles. The MV experiments with many different camera angles, especially in Riho's solo dance scenes, which were filmed very tastefully. It's a touching, aesthetically pleasing PV, and I highly recommend checking it out.


Anyway, thanks for viewing this spam and review, and I thoroughly hope you enjoyed!