50 YMM MVs Day 39: Training

We are back at it, still providing you with a daily exploration of one of YLMM’s multiple music videos. Today, we’ll be touching on Never Give Up Suiken, guest starring Rina Takeda, of Dead Sushi and Wakakozake fame.

In this MV’s story, the girls are framed as these legendary martial artists, before the 80s inspired movie set switches suddenly to current day, presenting  the problem of intoxicated office workers overtaking parks.

Rina Takeda plays Tatsuko Naruke, a meek office worker taken advantage of by her sleazy boss ( debt collector? My subpar japanese skills are more evident than ever in this story MV).
After this introduction, we switch to dance scenes featuring our favourite thawing idols in cute-ified, very flashy kung-fu inspired outfits. Their choreography and characters are heavily inspired by the archetype of the drunken martial artist.

As Tatsuko Naruke gets home after an excruciating day at work and drinks to unwind, she gets alcohol-fuelled dreams of the four girls training her in martial arts. As she gets to work the new day, she sees once again the higher-up martyrizing the regular employees in the office. As she hallucinates a fallen vial to be an element from her dream, she chugs it and, in a drunken fury, throws chaos in the office. As her less-than-respectable boss forces two of her female coworkers in a closed room with him, Tatsuko sees red. She gets into fist fight with her boss and as he lays on the ground, she is celebrated by her four mentors and a plethora of extras, who all engage in a celebratory dance. As the credit roll, we are treated to a bloopers/behind the scenes reel of the idols.

The presence of Rina Takeda for this narrative is extremely appropriated. She is, after all, a karate artist (black belt!) who eventually got into acting. In addition, her role as the main character of Wakakozake, a live-action drama adapted from a manga series about an office worker who loves to drinks and eat in charming bars after work, is all about enjoying alcohol. It’s no wonder the staff of YLMM thought of her for a story that allies fighting and alcohol.

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