17 November 2013

The Shounen Club 5 July 2009 review

Ah the July 2009 episodes. These I have a special place in my heart for as I was at the taping for the episodes, as I was in Japan at the time and knew I had to see a Shounen Club filming at least once while I was there. For those curious I did write a filming report for it back in 2009, though be prepared for quite a few misspelled words.

Most of the Juniors are missing for this month as they were at the KAT-TUN concert that was going on the same day as this filming. So like in times past it is one of the newer debuted groups that make up the bulk of the episode and in this case that would be Hey! Say! JUMP.

They start the episode by performing Jounetsu JUMP and we do get to see the Juniors that are around to be featured in the episode, Nakayama Yuma w/B.I.Shadow. And BIS now has its final line-up of Nakajima Kento, Kikuchi Fuma, Matsumura Hokuto and Kochi Yugo.

Of course with a KAT-TUN concert going on we only have Koyama Keiichiro around as the host of the program. Yabu Kota and Yaotome Hikaru step up to help assist him with hosting duties.

After there is the usual talk at the start of the episode we have a Hey! Say! JUMP solo medley. Only four members of the group, Yamada Ryosuke, Chinen Yuri, Takaki Yuya and Nakajima Yuto perform in the medley with their respective solo songs at the time. At the end though they all finish off Yuto's solo together.

This is followed by the You no Otegami Yumitai Desu! segment which Okamoto Keito, Morimoto Ryutaro and Yuto take part in. Keito got to read the letter than each took turns answering the question of which member of HSJ they thought was the kindest.

It is then a performance by NYC boys next, of course singing their debut song NYC. Watching this episode does remind me of how confusing things were at this time about the YuBIS and NYC boys thing. Watching it now I can just enjoy it for what it is, but I would be lying if there was not some conflicting feelings still as having the gap for CD releases for HSJ made the NYC boys unit hard to take.

The group right after the performance then get to explain their name to the audience, as they were just recently announced so they were still in full swing for the group promotions.

There are actually guests for this episode like a normal episode would have. For this month it is Tegomass and they show up to join Koyama in the Gekkan KoyaMaru segment. Koyama shares a photo of them and Kato Shigeaki. I honestly forgot NEWS was not just those four yet rewatching this. It surprised me to realize that but the remaining four tended to do quite a bit together back the group was six, which did make it easier to take the recent member loss than some of the others.

Tegomass then perform Tanabata Matsuri, which was the single that was released around that time for the duo. It is fun song though it took some getting used to as the style is a folksy-country which is not a usual style found in J-pop.

The game segment of this episode is Hey! Say! BEST o Abake, and it is one of the better o Abake segments for the show. And I am not being completely biased as the members are ready to have fun with it and it gets crashed by Tegomass showing up to tease Yabu and Hikaru.

HSB then perform their unit song School Days. It is far from my favorite song for them but it is always nice to see the members of HSB get some spotlight, even back then.

With the lack of Juniors we get a HSJ version of the regular Junior ni Q segment. Being the summer it is the season of freight in Japan so the question for them to answer is what they are most afraid of. They focus on the members of Hey! Say! 7 for this. Yamada's answer is high places. Keito gives his dog, Paboro, as his answer. Chinen answered with eggplant then Yuto just put down scary things. Ryutaro is up last and put down his mother.

There is a final You no Otegami Yumitai Desu! that prompts Yamada to do a lot of talking with the others there having to push their way in to the talk.

And we do get one Junior only performance this episode as BIS get to perform their group song Lalarila for the first time on the program. It can already be seen that Nakaken and Fuma will be the main two of the group with them having the most solo lines, but it makes a lot of sense as the other two have not been in Johnny's for long and Yugo seems to struggle to keep up with the performance.

It is then time to wrap up the episode and we get a HSJ performance to do that with. They perform Bouken Rider and they do have YuBIS join them part way through the song. Also if you pay attention you can see Takaki deciding to randomly zip up the jacket of his outfit to later unzip it. But Inoo Kei zips his up too, you just do not see it on screen like with Takaki.

Overall a good episode for HSJ fans. Junior fans may want to skip over it though unless B.I.Shadow was one of your favorite groups or you love Yuma.

It is always interesting for me to watch something that I did see live myself to try to see how much I can still remember. But looking back I realize as a HSJ fan how lucky I was to be able to see them live in 2009 as that was the first year the group went without releasing any CDs. Being able to see them live made the wait more bearable as a fan but in a way its own kind of frustrating as you knew they had plenty of songs they could have released as a single or to fill an album that you enjoyed hearing live but for whatever reason they did not.

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