Saturday, 15 September 2012

Sales + Popularity Make the Idol World Go Round, Hard Work only Plays a Part in that... RANT!

There is one thing (actually there are many things) which honestly pisses me off about International fans, and it is the general misconception that:
"omg I hate her so much! Why does she get all these lines when my favorite doesn't! It's not fair and blah blah blah!" it IS fair. I'll tell you why. The ones who get those lines, deserve those lines. They've worked their asses off to get to where they are!!!"
... And I'm being bluntly honest when I say that I found this on my facebook wall, on a H!P fans post, for the fandom to see. Okay, props to the girl for sticking up for Oda Sakura in the post, and I liked most of what she said... until this part turned up! There are so many things wrong with it I can't even...

Okay, guess what time it is? Yeah, I'm going to rant because I've seen this far too many times now to leave it. I've raved on Facebook about it, I've raved to a friend about it, and now, my darling readers, it is YOUR turn! Crank up Lalala no Bibibi, get yourselves comfortable with a mug of cocoa or something, and feel the rage!!!

Firstly, let me say this: I speak for MYSELF and ONLY MYSELF! No one else is included in this post, just me, and if you think or feel differently, kudos to you, but this is how feel. I don't aim to drag anyone else's opinion into this post... I hope. That statement above may contradict me on this, cos' that is something I found on FB, so that quote? Not my own words!

So, that said, what the hell is so wrong with this statement? Er, well try the fact that it basically claims that only the girls who get a lot of lines in a single, in any Idol group or group in general are the hard workers, and therefore, they are the only girls who deserve said lines and get to have the front line in the group, therefore also meaning that the girls in the back, the ones who get barely any lines are not hard workers?

Er... NO! Where is the logic in that? As far as I remember, ALL the girls in any group that I know of work f****ing hard, regardless of where they stand in the group. Backing dancers, lead singers, the personalities or pretty girls in a group, they all work their asses off because they want to improve, they WANT to get better and to build up their fandoms, regardless of how unpopular they may be! Regardless of their improvement, regardless of their fanbase, they are STILL in the back, even though they work just as hard as the centre girl or the person you claim works 'the hardest'. Not just one, not just two, not just the leads, but ALL girls work hard for their group. Why? Because they want to! If they didn't, they wouldn't be there, would they?

Not all of these girls are handed popularity on a platter, you know? Some girls are given it to them. Koharu, for example, and Reina is the greatest example I can give you all because that popularity is still there - it is their popularity which grants these girls lines and time to shine! What, so Sayu didn't work as hard as she does now when she was younger? I bet that girl worked her ass off because she wanted to improve to get to the level that Miki, Reina and Eri were at, and yet she didn't get recognition until later on in her Idol career, and even then she didn't get lines because her generation peers were far more popular than she was.

Okai Chisato worked hard, too - it wasn't until she hit puberty, and when a load of C-ute members graduated and gave everyone less girls to look at, that she became popular. It didn't matter how good she was at singing, or how funny she could be, it all came down to the fact that in the beginning she was not popular. But despite her lack of popularity, do you know what this girl did? She worked her butt off to improve, to do her best for her group and to try and gain fans, and guess what? It eventually payed off, she's freakin' popular now, she gets spotlight and plenty of lines, but it sure as hell didn't start off like that like it did for Airi or Maimi.

The bottom line is, no matter how good looking you are, or how good your voice is, it all comes down to SALES and POPULARITY. If the fans want you, love you and buy your goods, then there's that sure chance that you will be a lead, as long as you have a good majority of the fans following you. No matter what, an unpopular girl can't outshine a popular one, no matter how much better she is at singing or dancing, because that girl has the upper hand in her popularity. All these Idols do is work hard and enjoy their job, aiming t improve and hoping to gain new fans, but even if they aren't popular, you can be sure that these girls love being an Idol because it is what they have always wanted to do - I don't recall Aika ever hating the fact that she wasn't popular, because that girl adored her freakin' fans and cherished every one of them, and that goes for every girl in an Idol group! They love their fans, they work hard for their fans - ALL OF THEM - and they strive to improve for their fans and their group.

Summing it all up, no matter what, every girl works hard. Not the just the front girls, all of them! Ayumi wouldn't have become such an amazing dancer if she didn't work hard just because she was a backing dancer for Dorothy Little Happy. In the end, popularity wins, and that girl is at the front because she is popular. It doesn't mean that the girls in the back work less, and it certainly does not mean that the girls in the front work a lot harder. EVERYONE works hard, so excuse me for hating it when people say that certain members work harder than others.

Apologies for any repetition, but I needed to rant, to let off steam and to basically yell at the blog. My sister also had to listen to me through this because she walked in halfway through the creation of this post.



PING!!! Idolminded Recommended Reading: September 15th, 2012


  1. =( I know what you mean. I sort have already lost hope in the idea that Morning Musume might distribute the lines more equally. I had hope when 9th gen came in, but Ai was just replaced with Riho (who is one of my favourites but...). I don't know if I should even hope that Oda Sakura's entry will even out lines - I really doubt it. It sucks that even in B-sides or album songs, it's still hard to hear my favourite member's voice.

    1. In the end, as people have said, hard work can equate to popularity, but I do believe that popularity for certain girls will only happen later on. Zukki is probably the most unpopular member of Morning Musume right now, despite the amount of hard work she puts in.

      Also, it really depends on how UFA want to manage Morning Musume right now. As far as I know, they want to establish WHO will be the lead after Reina an Sayumi leave, and that is Riho. Just maybe lines will be fairer afterwards, or maybe they won't, who knows?

      I would love more lines, it would be wonderful to hear all the girls WITHOUT auto tune :(

  2. I feel that most of the time hard work= popularity, but only if you do it right. I don't follow hello project much so the only hard work Cinderella story I can think of is Okai Chisato, and POSSIBLY Gaki. Gaki mostly because she went from the youngest member, to tube longest member of morning musume and such.
    What I DO know about is AKB and its sister groups, and AKB is the DEFINITION of hard work pays off. The three biggest examples of that is Ohori Megumi, Tano Yuka, and Matsumura Kaori, Sato Amina would also be included but I don't follow her.
    Ohori was once the oldest member of AKB, and not popular by any means. Aki-p saw that she was too old to remain an idol, so he gave her a solo single and a ultimatum, if she didn't sell 10,000 copies of her solo single in a month she would have to graduate. This was back when AKB could BARELY sell 20,000 singles as a whole, if even. So one of the least popular members would have no chance, but Ohori proved that wrong. She went to the countryside and sold her singles in person. She went into bars and BEGGED to be let sing, and in the end she BARELY made her goal, but she did throuh hard work.
    Tano Yuka was just a KKS who was one of the strongest performers, she would work really really hard in everything she did, which got noticed by fans and she became one of the top 3 members of Team 4.
    Matsumura Kaori on the other hand is a SKE KKS, which in terms of relevancy in ALL48 is as low as you can get pretty much. Knowing that none of the KKS had any spotlight ever, she took matters into her own hands, she began uploading hilarious videos of herself to Google+ and through her smarts and ability to attract fans and hardwork, she was able to become one of the most popular members of SKE, and she was almost the center of a Gngham Check b-side.
    So at least in ALL48 I think it really is mostly about hard work, AKB worked harder than anyone to get where they are today, from 7 audience members to million selling singles is pretty much the definition of hard work being successful.

    1. I believe that all the girls work hard, but I just find it irritating how people sometimes phrase their words, as if they are saying that girls who are popular or get lines work harder than others do when the case is everyone works hard and tries their best, regardless of their fans. Aika is a prime example, because despite her little fanbase compared to others, she was a hard worker even when she hurt herself.

      And also, thanks for bringing up some history of AKB in this - I do agree, these girls weren't handed everything to them like some groups, such as Morning Musume who had popularity in their hands from the start.

      You've given amazing examples here, so thank you very much. Hard work can equate to popularity, as is the case of Sayumi and Kamei Eri, but it doesn't happen fast.

  3. Question; is your argument that talent doesn't also constitute work?

    I think the problem is your second statement "It implies that..." which... it doesn't. It doesn't imply anything. It's saying the lead girls have worked hard. Reina, though she doesn't look like she wants to be here at all anymore, has been doing this for seven years. Riho, let's take the claims of favoritism to heart, she's been taking private lessons and obviously has been working hard on her singing.

    As far as the other girls... I love Zukki so much. Go and look at Ai-chan's graduation speech to her about Zukki not asking for help. Listen to the way that Aika scolded the younger members for not working hard enough or taking it seriously. They're still kids and they still have their own various work ethics. You can tell that Zukki has started working harder than she did before by how VERY much she's grown as a dancer. You can see the reward with it with the fact that she's very frequently in the front in the dance for their latest video. She earned that. Did I say Kuduu sucks? No. I'm saying Zukki earned her spot at being in the front by hard work. Riho and Ayumi spent how many years training and practicing how to dance. They earned getting to be dance centers for all of that sweat. Sayu has logged SO many hours into singing practice and she DESERVES to have gotten that lead.

    Now if you want to argue that Zukki doesn't deserve to get to be at the front for dancing for a change in the line because Misaki works hard too and its insulting to Haruna because she's obviously working hard too... you can do that.

    But as for me? Zukki earned being in that front row for dancing.

    1. Talent - Reina has it, and that is what got her work and it was what made her popular when she auditioned for 5th generation. I know tha much, but in general, some girls without talent are front girls. Sayumi can't sing, but her talent in how she characterises herself proved a good move. Same with Erina: Girl can't sing, but she's shown a lot because the fans like her and she is extremely pretty.

      When I wrote this, it was on the basis that I didn't, and I still don't, like how people phrase their words - some people mean what they say, others don't, but it narks me off all the same no matter what, because basically people are saying 'These girls work harder than others, so in total, they get the lines'

      I wrote this post because it annoys me, and I wanted to say something about it. I knew that I would get backlash from it, and that people wouldn't agree with me or they would find flaws in what I said.

      With what you said, I didn't find anything wrong with it. I understood what you said, and I thought you were good enough to talk about a certain member working hard to get where she is. Also, I think that all these girls are hard workers - but hard work sometimes doesn't mean much in an Idols world. Yes, LinLin got to be in Morning Musume because Tsunku saw her hard work as an Egg, and yes, Zukki is in the front line for dancing now because Tsunku has seen her improvement, but what I am trying to say is that, in general, managements put popular girls to the front.

      I won't argue that certain girls don't deserve to be in the front, especially where it concerns Zukki - if you even read my blog at all you would KNOW that Zukki is in my top 3 for current members, as well as Haruna. I am not hating on any one member and it insults me when you insinuate that I am. ALL girls deserve the spotlight - Management just puts certain girls to the back because of their lack of popularity compared to another girl.

  4. You know, maybe it's because I'm not honestly in the fandom, that I don't see it too much and it doesn't irritate me - unlike the Kpop fandom.

    But I understand what you mean about those kinds of fans. Would you really say that about Chisato though? O_O It does of makes sense but in a way, can I ask do you think Kanna was popular?

    But you are right, at the end of the day it's all about sales and popularity. People need to realise that and they eventually will. I used to dislike Takahashi and Reina when I was 13 when I had no idea of the entertainment industry because they were in the front but I shrugged it off and got over it. I think the only center person I like in current MM is Ayumi (and Mizuki?).

    1. I didn't know of Kanna at all so I can't speak for her popularity so much - I'm more so speaking about current members or members I knew/know about.

      Currently, the centres I like are Sayu, Fukumura and Ayumi and Haruka (if Haruka is classed as a centre xD) I don't mind Riho so much, same with Tanaka, but those two aren't exactly my favourite members

    And, quite rightly so, cause it's an awful misconception. The idol industry isn't about rewarding those whom they think have done well, but giving the fans what they want. It isn't done for the girls, cause the girls aren't going to be handing money over to the company!

    I mean, in my favourite group, the most popular member is probably the hardest worker, but he's also a workaholic to the extent that it's beginning to get a tad worrying because he, reportedly, only gets to sleep when he travels between jobs (at least, recently) [kamebtwimpredictabletbh] But, just cause he ended up with some weird belief, when he was a teenager, that KAT-TUN was the only thing he had left and got a bit obsessed with work doesn't mean that other members don't work their arses off!

    I really hate this mentality. It's not about who deserves it. Sure, hard work does play its role, of course. People have to work hard to gain recognition, like, as you pointed out, Chisato. Eri, too. These girls worked hard to stand out and gain attention which made them more popular. But, just because their hard-work ended up being more successful doesn't stop the other girls from being just as dedicated. As you said, if they weren't working hard enough to deserve things, they probably would have quit by now, since they probably wouldn't have enough passion for the group

    1. Ah, Phobby, I love you x3 <3 is all I can say ;D

      I'll go with love cause there isn't actually anything you could have said to me, since I basically agree with you xD
      I really do agree, though - when will people learn that the idol industry isn't all sparkles, rainbows and ice cream and that there is such thing as ungairness there, too. People refer to the music industry as a monster, so, now, why wouldn't the idol part of that industry be the same? xD

    3. I was indeed short because I really had nothing to say, cos as you said, you agreed with me XD I came up short, I apologise x3

      I think that at first, we really just blind ourselves from the truth and take nothing else into account until it eventually hits us hard in the face that this industry is indeed unfair - I've learned that, and I even realised it happened with groups that I liked through my childhood like Atomic Kitten, S Club 7, STEPS etc. They all had favourites in the group who clearly had more lines than others, and that was something big to take in, how similar the industry was to real singing talents.


      Yeah, I think I realised when I heard Resonant Blue, though xD Which was quite early on into my H!P fandomness (and MoMusu were the first pop group I properly listened to). But, going by 90's UK Pop groups, how about Spice Girls? Musically, what was Posh's purpose? I'm quite convinced she had none, yet, Spice Girls are the biggest girl group ever.