It’s Not Just Song: Let Parallel Japan Show You the Power of Dance

I got a ping from my (secret!) personal Twitter account yesterday and was drawn to some dance video from the arguable masters of heavy, violent idol dance performance, Parallel Japan:

And in a very meta moment, it’s a song from one of the other great dance units, Osaka Shunkashuto.

And I thought, you know, we always talk about image and attitude and style and, of course, music when we talk about idols, but how much do we really ever talk about this extremely important part of an overall stage performance?

I’m just going to keep the lens on Parallel for this one, but they’re just one of the top-of-the-line dance units, having gotten their start that way before transitioning to vocals, too. SSFW and Q’ulle had similar trajectories on their way to their own slice of fame. Some units, like PassCode and even Babymetal, are known for the dance components of their show even though they aren’t up to the same standard — you can communicate a lot of emotion and energy with how you move on stage.

Of course, most idols are pretty objectively terrible at actual dancing. I get a kick out of tweets from the dance studio, “had a lesson today,” that make me snark things like “oh, so you’re pump-fist-jog-in-circle moves will be a little more on point now!” It’s not completely fair, what with the fact that most idols are glorified amateurs doing this stuff in their spare time, but it is what it is.

For the Parallels of the world, though, the dance is just as important as anything else they do. And they do it really goshdarn well. Here’s a bunch of Sari and Asumi and Yui crushing it:

These two are important for a different reason!

Of course, being able to appreciate their total product is important, too:

Come on, Parallel. Get that long-rumored MV produced and out for us to appreciate.


8 thoughts on “It’s Not Just Song: Let Parallel Japan Show You the Power of Dance

    • BABYMETAL are fine dancers (especially Yui), but Mikiko’s choreography tends to be about detail, whereas Parallel’s choreography tends to be about you-two-give-yourselves-whiplash-while-I-bend-myself-in-a-direction-that-the-human-hipsocket-should-not-allow, so they’re not going to have quite the same energy..

      • I think your observation about the difference in their style of choreography is basically correct but i feel like you are vastly underplaying how dynamic and athletic BABYMETALs dancing is, the extra detail in Mikiko’s choreography does not mean that BABYMETAL does not have whiplashes, impressive bends and various other violent dance moves.

        So yeah, i think BABYMETALs dancing is more than “up to the standard” of Parallel Japan.

        • If you feel like I have anything less than very high regard for BABYMETAL’s dynamism and athleticism, then we have different feelings.
          Even so, BM aren’t hitting maximum revs at all times; Su has to make us cry with Akatsuki occasionally, for example. Meanwhile, Parallel are just keeping right on spraining necks and wrenching limbs..

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