13 February 2013

The Shounen Club 03 April 2006 review

We get a new season starting with these April episodes though not the best idea of what the season will have typically as KAT-TUN is back to celebrate their debut. There are some changes that should carry throughout the season that can be seen still.

The start is the introduction of the Junior groups as each dance. Two changes to notice is that Toshin Yoshikazu in nowhere to be seen so it is just the A.B.C. four. If this is going to be the permanent change for the group will be seen in the next couple of episodes but this seems like it should be about the time for it. Another change that seems to in motion and should be confirmed in the next couple months of episodes is that Kis-My-Ft2 is a seven member group with Iida Kyohei having left. If anything he is not around for these April episodes and the timing is right for the group to go through that line up change.

When KAT-TUN get introduced they of course make a big deal about it, and rightly so as the group have been away from the usual filmings for months and they were at their peak when they debuted. They launch right into singing their debut song, Real Face, to kick things off.

Have to say I did not remember this song being so fanservicey but that is probably because I listen to it much more than watch performances of it.

We then go to the usual starting talk, but they make sure that Yabu Kota, Yaotome Hikaru and Nakajima Yuto are a part of it. The producer of the episode is Kamenashi Kazuya and the theme of course is Debut.

The opening medley is a debut medley of the senpai groups, mostly performed by the Juniors with very little KAT-TUN. Another sign that KAT-TUN are not coming back to the same status they had before.

One of the seasonal changes is that the area they do the MCs at now have a place for people to sit down. It seems like such a minor thing but this will be something that remains up to the present episodes so it feels like a major thing in that sense. They go over the school debuts of Yuto who is entering junior high school and Hikaru and Ayukawa Taiyo who are entering high school.

J.J.Express then perform their group song, Love Me Baby. There is not much to say as it does not stand out from past performances but it is still a solid song and the boys do well performing it. It is amazing to see how short Yuto looks here considering how tall he will eventually grow.

For the game segment we get the return of Shokura Mania. This time KAT-TUN joining the older Junior groups in playing. The first couple of questions are really easy though and I believe Nakamaru Yuichi even brings that up here.

Nakamaru ends up being the main star of this game segment. Especially when Kame gets him to change his answer to the wrong one.

But it is not the last we see of him in the talk segment as he returns for the last question as it uses VTR of KAT-TUN. The question is which member Tanaka Koki chose to be his girlfriend for a request he had to do and the choices were between Akanishi Jin and Nakamaru. Nakamaru gets to be trolled by Kawai Fumito as I believe he explains that he chose Jin as his answer because he likes him more.

Being the episode that is centered around KAT-TUN's debut we get another performance from the group, this time the B-side song to their debut single, GLORIA. I like the song and it is a good B-side track to make their debut single a solid release.

With the return of KAT-TUN we get the return of TaNaka. They finally did something that made me laugh with the Kappa impersonation.

Then there is a duet with Kame and Taguchi Junnosuke for the song Special Happiness. It seems a bit off having these two paired off as it typically does not happen but on the other hand it is nice to see things changed up a bit.

This is followed by Junior ni Q. Juniors featured that are still around are Arioka Daiki and Takaki Yuya. Arioka talks about a Renge Debut, which I am assuming is about the Chinese spoon as it looks like he drew one on his paper and it makes the most sense from what I could get from the conversation.

Takaki talked about aroma, as in scented candles, mentioning he got into it from his older sister. Takaki is still in that quiet stage as a Junior though as he does not say much outside of answering the questions asked.

We have a MC corner lead by Kame with Kisumai and A.B.C. talking about debuting as adults. Kawai and Yokoo Wataru get to be the main speakers for it. I could not follow much of it but I think Yokoo was saying he felt like an adult when he got his father a Christmas gift. And he mentioned that his mother got him a video game for Christmas. Then when Kame asked others what they had given their parents for Christmas Kitayama Hiromitsu said he gave his mother flowers.

Kisumai get to perform a new song for them, Endless Road, which was on the first Kis-My-Zero CD. it is interesting to see how different the group dynamics were as it is the older three getting more attention followed by Senga Kento and Nikaido Takashi with Miyata Toshiya and Tamamori Yuta just there in the back for the most part. It looks like Tamamori and Yokoo switched places and Miyata and Nikaido switched as well but the front three getting more attention than the other four these days.

Kame then reads an essay about his thoughts about debuting, talking about the other members of his group as well.

He then sings a solo version of Seishun Amigo. It feels like it has been a really long time since Kame sang this song. Nowadays it seems more likely for Yamashita Tomohisa to be singing it than Kame even though it was a duet between the two originally.

One of the bigger changes comes at the end of the episode. As instead of whoever is considered the main Junior group just singing it there is a mix of the older Junior groups, Ya-Ya-Yah, A.B.C. and Kisumai that sing it. Also the song is new, Aozora, which makes me happy as I really did not care for the past end song. Do not care much for Aozora either but I think this is the season that they have more than one ending song so I am not too worried about it.

Some of the changes for the season seemed to be on the way from the past couple of months of episodes. Though that is nothing new and it gives me some hope that the episodes for the current SC are going to be signs of how the next season will play out. That makes me happy as from the first episode of February it will start focusing more on the Juniors again.

I guess another thing to mention is that while there are the additions that I pointed out there are also some things that are missing. Most noticeable are the Juniors that are missing. Not just the two that I already mentioned but also Jimmy Mackey is gone and may have departed from the show with the new season. Of course it will be a couple of months before I feel these departures are confirmed as I have been wrong before but I have the feeling like those three will not be coming back to the show.

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