Sunday, 15 July 2018

Personal Thoughts: Graduating Okay! Musume Time? (Not yet, but maybe)

I keep wondering when I last did a post, and looking back now, it was at the end of June. Thinking even further, I haven't continued my Haachin series despite saying I would, and actually I have a clear idea of where to go with them, but right now I don't have the time, and my interest has waned a little with this space. I don't know why, it just has.

Thinking back to my hiatus, I had times where I thought about completely leaving Okay! Musume Time and never looking back, and those feelings are only intensifying now despite how much I wanted to return. It was actually during my weekend at HYPER JAPAN that I wondered more about graduating Okay! Musume Time or going on another hiatus, because despite how much I love this blog and how much it has shaped me as a person and a writer, it's also holding me back a little (or so I believe), and I'm not as into the articles I want to write as I could be.

There is a lot I want to do on here, but I want to do similar content on Selective Hearing. I also want to showcase a better, more professional side to myself, but I don't think I could ever get Okay! Musume Time to that standard, but also I want to keep this personal, bubbly side to myself on here. I've also acknowledged that I want to write more for Selective Hearing and to better my article count there. It's quite low in my mind, and during my hiatus I did well with writing, but since trying to get back into writing on O!MT I have fallen back into the habit of writing nothing for either site. It's aggravating, worrying, and it only stresses me out more.

Of course there are a lot of good things about Okay! Musume Time that make me want to write here for a long time. Firstly, it will be 8 years old come November. Second, I finally hit the 1000 post count during a Haachin-based post. Third, I have been able to talk to so many people through this and made friends thanks to blogging. I've grown and learnt so many things since starting up my blog and I can't be happier that it brought me so many things. It's thanks to Okay! Musume Time that I am where I am today in my love for idols and writing, but I know that there will be a time when I need to stop and do something a little different, or the same thing on another platform.

I will give myself until Okay! Musume Time's 8th Anniversary to decide whether or not I graduate this space. By then I should know where I want to be and what I want to do.

Apologies for the sudden post everyone, but I wanted my feelings about this situation out in the open. Thank you for reading, and please take care.

Chiima.

Friday, 29 June 2018

[Snippets of Haachin] The Haachin Experience - Performance Selection (Mini-Reviews)

[Snippets of Haachin] - also known as [A Week with Haachin] - is a week-long series in which I dedicate myself to all things Ogata Haruna. Whether it is a PV Review, Birthday Live viewing or something else, this series dedicates itself to watching the growth and wonder of Ogata Haruna before her upcoming Graduation on June 20th, 2018.

Even with minimal screen time and few solo lines, let's look back at Ogata Haruna's 4 years as an idol and adore her from afar. It's time to celebrate and fall in love once again with this idols smile and sweet nature...


Despite Haachin already graduating from Morning Musume '18 on June 20th, I plan on finishing these posts as soon as I can (all without becoming stressed or damaging my work life) and appreciating the heck out of her as much as humanly possible, because yes, she is worth it. That, and I really didn't plan out or time the posts that well beforehand, so I will repent for my sins and finish what has been started (let's hope I finish this, at least).

So, without further delay I give you this: a small but satisfying selection of songs that showcase our dear Haachin in a live setting, one where we can truly enjoy her as an idol on the stage. Though she might not have dominated the platform like many before her, and whilst she does not have the voice of an angel, this was still a place where could watch her shine a little more brightly and where we could truly appreciate the hard work, efforts and her smile even more.

Even though she wasn't given the time to shine as much others in line distribution or camera presence, we can still watch over her time as an idol and look back fondly at the memories she created. It's time to adore Haachin a little more and look back at the few lines she was given throughout the years. Are you ready to reminisce?

Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Renouncing The Crown - Shirosaki Himari and Kojima Mayumi to Graduate Houkago Princess

On June 25th 2018, Houkago Princess members and staff made the announcement that 6ki member Shirosaki Himari and Kojima Mayumi from the 7th generation would graduate from the group in a double Graduation ceremony on August 12th this year.

Shirosaki Himari was first introduced as an Apprentice in June 2014, and was eventually promoted to Regular status in February 2015. She is a 6th generation member alongside Michishige Saho and Maika, as well as the youngest member within Houkago Princess.

In September 2015, Kojima Mayumi joined Houkago Princess as a member of their trainee programme, HouPri YOUTH Beforehand, Mayumi had been active gravure model. Since September 2016, Mayumi has been an active member of Houkago Princesses Regular lineup as a 7th generation member alongside her gen mate, Sekine Sasara. She will be the second member of her generation to graduate.

Wednesday, 20 June 2018

The End of The Idol Road - Ogata Haruna Graduates from Morning Musume '18 and Hello! Project


On this day June 20th, 2018, Ogata Haruna embarked on her final journey alongside Morning Musume '18, before joining the ranks of many beloved but graduated members and marking her history as a member in one of Japan's longest running idol groups. Now, after a short but memorable three years and eight months, Ogata Haruna will create a new path for herself as she looks towards her new dream of attending University.

Already it feels weird to write these words, and right now it's hard to think that Haachin won't be a part of this lineup. I can't even express how strange it feels to know that from this day on, Haachin is a member of the Graduated girls. Then again, this isn't a graduation any of us were expecting halfway through the year.

Thursday, 14 June 2018

[Snippets of Haachin] Greeting You Sweetly (I-Candy à la Haachin)

[Snippets of Haachin] - also known as [A Week with Haachin] - is a week-long series in which I dedicate myself to all things Ogata Haruna. Whether it is a PV Review, Birthday Live viewing or something else, this series dedicates itself to watching the growth and wonder of Ogata Haruna before her upcoming Graduation on June 20th, 2018.

Even with minimal screen time and few solo lines, let's look back at Ogata Haruna's 4 years as an idol and adore her from afar. It's time to celebrate and fall in love once again with this idols smile and sweet nature...


I'm still in a state of confusion as to how soon Haachin's graduation is, despite being fairly aware that it's literally around the corner. I suppose it's because it was a little more rushed than most, and there hasn't been a hype around it like Duu's or even Zukki's. So, I'm still in a state of delusion, thinking that it isn't the end - not just yet. Even planning these posts isn't helping the realisation to settle in any quicker.

That said, despite being ignorant to my own feelings over Haachin's graduation, I must admit that after viewing her first - and only - Greeting's DVD, I was overcome with a sense of sadness. It hit me pretty hard that very soon, the only two non-birthday solo DVD's she would have been given are themed around her introduction, and then her goodbye. It's shocking to acknowledge, and makes watching her Greeting even sadder than I had expected, because after seeing this for the very first time, I actually wonder how she never received another solo DVD of any form. Haachin is very endearing and entertaining to watch, and you can really see how fun and cute she is here.

With that said, it's time to delve into a solo journey that features our beloved Haachin. After a disappointing lack of solo shots in almost all of her debut music videos, this time we will celebrate the image and charm of a girl

So, after the disappointing lack of Haachin in her debut PV's, it's time to sit down and take a look at Haachin in her solo journey through the 'Greeting' DVD. Much like a photo book, we will embark on a visual trip with the cute and upbeat Ogata Haruna, an angel whose image has not been appreciated enough in pictures or cinematography.

Welcome to Greeting ~Ogata Haruna~. Are you ready for your heart to still?

An Interview with Darkness: Selective Hearing Interviews NECRONOMIDOL

A little earlier in the year, I devised some questions for the dark-wave, HP Lovecraft themed group, NECRONOMIDOL via Selective Hearing, based around their up-coming tour to the United Kingdom where the group would visits Manchester, Birmingham and London for three live shows. Due to the groups busy schedule with both touring and recording, however, it was not possible for management to release the translated replies until now.

I would like to thank both Greg of Selective Hearing and Ricky who is NECRONOMIDOL's manager for allowing me this opportunity to give the questions and to interview the group via e-mail. It's great to look back on the members' feelings before the show, and to also have a better understanding of the group after everything has already happened, as well as to see how well their answers fit in line with the recent shows.

Please check out the original article on Selective Hearing, but do enjoy this version as well. Thank you very much.

*As a side note, this version contains a few more questions and answers that do not appear in the Selective Hearing original. So, we have a bonus round. Enjoy!


Interviewer: Kelly-Mae (Chiima)
Editor: Greg

Key:

K: Risaki Kakizaki
S: Sari
H: Hina Yotsuyu
R: Rei Imaizumi
T: Himari Tsukishiro

[Snippets of Haachin] A Quartet of Beauty - 'Seishun Kozou ga Naiteiru / Yuugure wa Amaegari / Ima Koko Kara' PV Overview(s)

[Snippets of Haachin] - also known as [A Week with Haachin] - is a week-long series in which I dedicate myself to all things Ogata Haruna. Whether it is a PV Review, Birthday Live viewing or something else, this series dedicates itself to watching the growth and wonder of Ogata Haruna before her upcoming Graduation on June 20th, 2018.

Even with minimal screen time and few solo lines, let's look back at Ogata Haruna's 4 years as an idol and adore her from afar. It's time to celebrate and fall in love once again with this idols smile and sweet nature...


Truth be told, I honestly didn't think that my [Week with Ogata] series would be as hard as it's looking to be, and if I had had a clue about how annoyingly difficult it will be, then I would have started this series around the time Ohaa announced her graduation date. That said, you can't help it when life gets in the way... but when has that ever stopped me from getting these kinds of posts out, on time or not?

I think the difficulty stems more from the fact that Ogata is one of the rare, few members who is given very little when it comes to releases and publications. With a small amount of solo lines, stupidly little screen time and not that much in either concerts or even solos, there is a limit to what I can find on the world wide web without having to download or buy DVD's. Even in terms of magazine and photo shoots there isn't much for Ogata, and even if there was something out there that included her and her alone, it's more than likely only available in Japan. That's just the way it is, and for foreign fans especially, we can only see what's on the surface.

And oh, what a shallow surface that is in regards to our dear Haachin.

Well, never fear, dear Readers, because I will persevere in my quest to adore Ohaa until the day she graduates! With even the most minimal of content, I'll try my best to doll out reviews and talk about the girl many love, an idol who will be missed by friends and fans alike in this ever-evolving world of entertainment and cuteness. Though she may not be as present as we would like, she is a member who has placed a stamp on our hearts, a girl who has appealed to those that noticed the unique and undeniable quality of Ogata Haruna. For many, she is their oshi, and throughout this series we will try to come and understand just why she sticks out to others, and why she is so darned special.

I could go on and use various synonyms to describe Ogata, but where's the fun in that? So before I dare to lose myself in words, let's take a look at the debut of Ogata Haruna, a quartet of beauty that represents the beginning of a generation.

This is the beginning of the end, dear Readers. Are you ready to indulge in all things Ogata? Let's go~