15 December 2012

The Shounen Club 16 January 2005 review

On the second episode of January for 2005, so after this one more month of new programming until the new season begins and we can see what changes that will bring.

Instead of the usual introduction we get the major Junior groups singing their signature songs at the beginning of the show. Again there is the issue of them using the old recording of Yuuki 100% for Ya-Ya-Yah but I was more happy to see J.J.Express singing Back In Time, as it is one of my favorite JJE songs.

Speaking of JJE, they seem to be the younger Junior group getting the most focus in this episode as they get to be a part of the opening talk before Kanjani8 is introduced as the guests. The theme of this episode is Wa (which can have various meanings but traditional Japanese style seems to be the main focus of the episode for it).

The opening medley is lead by Kanjani8 and after Naniwa Iroha Bushi consists of songs with boogie-woogie in their titles. And while I made no mention of it in the other episode I would like to do so with this one and just say I really dislike the costumes K8 are wearing here.

We get the return of the the Naka Naka Ii Jyan segment that features Tanaka Koki, Nakamaru Yuichi and Nakajima Yuto. The letter Yuto reads is from a viewer in Hong Kong who sent a video tape with footage from her school where students performed the hand movements to Yax3's song Sekai ga Hitotsu ni Naru made.

KAT-TUN, with Kamenashi Kazuya being the most prominent member, perform a Japanesque medley, which seems to just be songs that use traditional Japanese instruments in them. But Kame does get to wear a kimono-ish outfit and that look tends to always work for him.

We get a new game for this episode that is focused on KAT-TUN as apparently fans got to vote on answers for certain questions. KAT-TUN first get to answer them with who they think is the best fit for them, like which member would tell their lover that they love them daily and such, and then see if their answer matches what the fans thought.

Yaotome Hikaru and Yabu Kota get some talk time before a Ya-Ya-Yah performance. Hikaru does the most talking of the two, which I guess is a sign that things are evening out between him and Yabu in terms to promotion. It is nice to see other Juniors than the usual suspects in these corners now.

Yax3 then sing Just Wanna Lovin' You and I think they are growing into the song. It is easy to see they all are quickly on their way to leaving their childish looks as they are growing up and songs like this are bound to fit their image in a year or two when they all should solidly look like teens.

For the VTR portion of the show we get footage of KAT-TUN at Yokohama Arena for their second solo concert series Kaizokuban. We first get to hear them talk about the stage and songs that they will be performing, bringing up that all the members have solo songs for this concert.

Then we switch to backstage with the other half of the group to look at the outfits they wear for the concert. Akanishi Jin makes sure to point out that his jacket for the opening number has a "pet" attached to it. Then there is some footage of the concerts themselves.

Toshin Yoshikazu & A.B.C. even get a talk segment MC, which they get to sport shiny gold outfits. It is really nice that all the members got a chance to talk as well.

It seems like the gold outfits were specifically for them to back dance to the next number of the show, KAT-TUN's Gold. Still love the song and the performances of it have all been solid. Of course KAT-TUN are pretty much stage veterans by now so there is little surprise there.

There is the return of TaNaka, who just seem to be killing time as the stage is prepared for the next performance. But they do their usual comedy routine before introducing the next acts.

After Jimmy Mackey butchers Freddie Mercury again Question? gets to take the stage to perform one of their songs, Holy Heaven. It is rather bitter sweet to see Q? get these opportunities seeing that currently the group looks to be in shambles.

KAT-TUN then sing Arigato no Uta and while it is pleasant enough to listen to it just feels like a let down when compared to their earlier performance of GOLD.

Same old, same old for the ending song. This time though they have the younger Juniors and have JJE and a couple of the ungrouped little ones up with them to dance. Still very much looking forward to a change in this as I find it hard to not just tune this end performance out completely now.

A solid episode over all, and the focus on KAT-TUN felt more organic with them having a concert to promote, even if that concert was in the past from the looks of it. But still it works with the standards of SC about these things. Plus the other groups all get little moments to shine of their own which helps make things seem more balanced.

I would have liked to have seen more of K8, seeing as they were the guests of the episode, but I guess they did get quite a bit of that last episode.

No comments: