As always, all opinions regarding any songs or PVs are my own. If you don't like my opinion, then why not go and write a blog post with your opinion? I would love to read it! :D
Ue Kara Mariko is the 24th single from AKB48, and the first to feature Mariko Shinoda as a centre in the single.
Whilst I may not be a big fan of AKB48, I do occasionally listen to their music, and I have been wanting to write a review on one of their PVs for a while now. I originally intended to do a review for Kaze wa Fuiteiru, but the video didn't entertain me (but I actually really liked the song), and I got bored when I started writing the review. I like to enjoy what I'm writing, and Kaze wa Fuiteiru was rather depressing when it came to trying to talk about my likes and dislikes of the video.
So, I was starting to anticipate this video, and I hoped that it would entertain me more than the previous single from AKB48 did. Thank goodness it turned out to be more entertaining.
SO! now that I've talked a little bit, let's get on with the review and see what the heck I have to say about this song and the video!
I do not like this hue...
Mariko gets all Gangaster
Yeah, you get in the way of Mariko, little bitches, she'll cut you!
Mariko's like 'HELL YEAH this is ma PV, YO!'
Oh, she's a pretty one~
The girl plots and schemes, wondering how she will take down Mariko and the rest of these AKB girls...
Er.... I doubt that AKB girls are really this saintly, but whatever floats your fetish
Wait... Janken Tournament?
Mariko: They're rein-acting my VICTORY!!!
That was my first though when I realised this video was Janken orientated.
The nun, the nun, let the fucking nun win!!!
Lol wtf are they doing?
OMFG she has such a chubby face! Mine! <3
Hopeful AKB winner wannabe's.
And Mariko, watching smugly from the side as she gives the girls a penetrating, indecent stare...
Hey, I found another cute one! *catches with Pokéball*
Yeah, I also wonder why the fuck writing appears every time somebody new appears in a costume.
King: Oh hells yeah, I won!
Smuggy: Ima wipe the floor with you, beyotch.
So not impressed
YAY! Chubby Cheeks is a winner! ;A;
This part of the dance made me lol
But this just made me think Fucking EPIC!!!
Princess-chan is shocked, whilst King-kun bows her head in SHAME!
Oh look, Mariko's back!
Mariko: What the hell, why are you in here?
Nameless-chan: I... I fail...
Mariko: ... Here's a hair clip, now smile, depressed child, SMILE!
Wait, why did you change Mariko? Did you transform!? :o
Mariko: I have faith in you, young one.
Nice pom poms
Mariko watches as her minions fight one another for dominance and to get on top of Mariko.
Mariko: Like a boss!
Scissors, I choose you!
And Nameless-chan wins! After stealing Mariko's dress, and borrwing her hair clip, she left the tailors dressing room to partake in the Janken tournament, and with her stolen goods, she won with scissors over paper. Now she can top Mariko in bed!
Mariko is pleased
And Nnameless-chan smiles as she stares over at her new lover
So, now that we;ve looked through the pictures from this video, let's get on with my conclusion and see my overall opinion of AKB48's 24th single!
To be honest, when I first heard this song, my initial thought was 'This is a generic AKB48 song', and even though I absolutely adore the song now, I still think that it's rather generic and recognisable as an AKB song. But that doesn't mean that it isn't a likeable song, because it really is.
The song is very catchy, from the soft voices of the members blended together as well as the happy and charming beat of the instrumental. You're instantly hooked on the song, and you'll probably find yourself singing along to some parts, especially the Ue Kara, Mariko line, which I have found myself singing to rather happily as I listen to the song on a loop. Yes, people, this is loop-worthy song! I've actually found myself listening to this more and more now when I am not watching anime or when I'm not doing homework, so I've kinda hooked myself on it in a way. It's a pretty infectious song, despite how generically AKB it is.
I'm going to say that my favourite parts have to be where the guitar rifts kick in (I hope it's guitar rifts, because that's what it sounds like to me) and the instrumental is kicked up a notch. You really get a feeling of energy and happiness from the song when you hear the instrumental. Even so, with the vocals the song is upbeat and playful, but personally, I am loving the instrumental more than anything. It's fun and catchy, just what I like.
Now, moving onto the video itself, I really don't have any complaints. I guess the only thing that bugs me is the fact that the video isn't how I pictured it to be. Once the Jacket covers were released, I imagined an Alice in Wonderland themed video, and I was really anticipating that, but instead we got something totally different. However, I think that the video turned out really well, and even though Ii don't have my dream Alice in Wonderland PV with cute chubby faced girl in a cute outfit, I still have this video where she is adorable and huggable.
Now, getting back on track, I am really liking the dance to this video - the way they have incorporated Janken moves into it is something I wouldn't think they would do at all, but considering this is a video based around the Janken tournament winner, I shouldn't be surprised that they managed to fit it in somehow. I just really like how the video starts with all the girls running towards Mariko as she holds up her fist in the form of rock, and they all retreat in playful defeat whilst showing scissors. It's a nice way to symbolise Mariko's victory throughout the video, and it caught my attention straight away.
Another thing I love is the costumes in the video - there are a different variety of outfits for all the girls, and some are extremely cute. The one that caught my attention the most, though, was the girl in the Kings outfit. Now, I may not know much about AKB48, but I do know that Mariko is a fashion lover and that at the Janken Tournaments the members generally wear a costume, so I wasn't at all surprised to see that there was a dressing room with mannequins in there, connecting both the Janken Tournament and Mariko together. But what surprised me was how Mariko wasn't shown doing the tournament with the others. In fact, she was watching over them and helping them choose their costumes, showing a leader-like, or big sister, quality about her throughout the PV, as if she was watching over the girls whilst they aimed to win.
And that brings me to my final point about the PV, and though this isn't negative, it isn't entirely positive either. Whilst watching the PV, I started to realise how much of a graduation video it seemed like. Mariko standing in the background as she watches over the girls play Janken, helping them to get dressed and choose their costumes as well as helping that one girl with her hair and giving her more focus than the others, by being with her and watching over her as she wins the Janken Tournament and becomes the winner. During the end, you realise how much this PV looks like Mariko is handing over front girl reigns to another member, and though this may not be the case, it's rather noticeable and can also be worrying for Mariko fans.
But even with the graduation feeling to it, I really like the video. I like the little story line that is present with Mariko watching over the girls who have entered the tournament, and I enjoy the dance and the costumes. This video is really entertaining in its own way, and gives you a sense of giddyness and makes you feel happy. It's the sort of song that you get hooked on, and the sort that you won't let go of for a while. Though the video is nothing like what I had expected, I really like this version and I think that Mariko is a great front girl. She deserves the centre position more, however, I am getting tired of her being used as the girl who looks over everyone else. It was used in Everyday Kachussha, and I was hoping it wouldn't be like that in this video, but she was shown to be looking over everyone else.
C'est la Vie, as they say.
OH! And it's refreshing not to see Maeda Atsuko there. Her face honestly annoys me sometimes, but that's my personal opinion.
I like this song, but what do you think of it?
EDIT: Who also feels like this sounds too much like Everday Kachussha? The beginning sounds far too much like it...