You Don’t Even Need Japanese to Understand This Idol Documentary That’s All in Japanese

This is pretty cool; if you have a little while today or tomorrow or over the weekend or at some point before the heat death of the universe, give this documentary on the idol underground, the people performing and the people who love them a watch:

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Help Solve This Incredible Mystery

One of the really fun parts of being a non-Japanese idol fan is trying to come to grips with something so far outside of your own cultural experience. Yes, one can always draw parallels to something familiar, but idol as cultural phenomenon is often almost incomprehensible to Western minds.

So of course the collision of two countries’ pop culture phenomena would give me a friggin’ headache.

Okay. Continue reading


Get Ready for the Classiest Friday Night You’ve Ever Had

I don’t know what’s happening in California these days, but it’s apparently infecting people’s brain waves. Those silly people at A-to-J Connections are having me on the A-to-J Talks podcast again tonight.

What’ll we be talking about? Continue reading


Idol Is Art

Here’s another one for you fine people to chew on.

Brian turned me on to this translated blog post at Babymetal Newswire, originally by anime director Yamamoto Yukata, that’s interesting in a lot of ways for its ruminations on the Tokyo Dome performances from an artistic perspective (if you missed Daemon’s Red Night and Black Night dispatches, there’s another chance).

The money quote is Babymetal being at “the forefront of contemporary art,” as the title suggests, but it’s the reason that gets me: While Babymetal may not quite hit all the right notes all the time or be quite as perfect in their stage performance as often seems to be the case, its in the commitment to this thing they’re doing, this creation of personae and acting within them, that makes them perfect idols, and attaining that level of idol is an art in and of itself.

Fascinating, and also true. Continue reading


Not Just Any Standard, the World Standard

Who’s up for another gothic shot in the arm? I know I could stand for a little gloom.

Here’s the latest from The World Standard, Wa-suta, who have actually made a cameo appearance here in the original TIF Megathread courtesy of @ramenshuriken but fell by the wayside since:

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Let’s Mix It up a Little: When Idol Goes Hip-hop

Stop your complaining! These days, if it isn’t BiS/H, it’s Babymetal, with sprinklings of other stuff. It’s not my fault that a whole bunch of the idol world is just doing a bunch of shows and festivals right now, or having heartbreaking last one-mans; if I want to keep things moving, and ON A SUNDAY, I gotta get creative.

This post was inspired by the following message from our good friend and fellow Know Your BiStory conspirator @weeaboowitch:

Yep, we manage to include BiS in everything anymore.

That’s right. It’s time to talk hip-hop idols. Continue reading


Know Your BiStory #6: IDOL

Day 5 of Know Your BiStory features our own community member boans, who’d probably prefer that I intro him with some other association, so click here to actually get his story.

“IDOL” is not only a prototypical heavy idol song, it’s also the most quintessential BiS thing I can think of.

In the lead-up to the single’s release in 2012, the group (then comprised of Pour Lui, Hirano Nozomi and Terashima Yufu) uploaded a music video to their Youtube channel that featured the trio clad in cute maid outfits, cheerfully bopping through choreography for a typical idol pop song. The promotional campaign around the video’s release encouraged fans to “buy the same CD over and over again.”

Screen capture from Japanese idolcore legends BiS's idol parody video "idol"

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Before They Were Homicidol: BiSH’s Chitti Like You’ve Never Seen Her Before

A fan of BiSH could be forgiven for a bit of nerves (get it?) after what all is happening in the wider world of WACK, but maybe some perspective is in order: BiSH has, in fact, come a very long way. Via the BiSH unofficial fanpage comes this gem:

Chitti in dressing room, 2 years ago, when she was member of the idol group Tsuyogari Sensation

Of course, lest you forget who we’re dealing with and think “oh, idol, she just turned her powers of kawaii to well-manicured chaos,” there’s this from the Captain herself:

I’m a masochist. I really like pain.

And people wonder why we dig this stuff …


You Guys. There Are Pirate Idols Now.

This is just a PSA. Pirate idols are real. This is Golden Age.

Fittingly commingling the Golden Age of Piracy with the Warring Idols Period, natch.

No, they’re nothing like ALESTORM.

I just can’t sometimes.


I See Idols: An Evening with Avandoned

I was kind of excited about this. You’d have a hard time making me a case to include geek idols Avandoned on this site as a regular thing, but they’d be a central part of the sister site. Not only are they cool as hell, but their tour in the U.S. was basically under the guidance of their collaborators/friends Hijokaidan, and if you get a chance to see Jojo Hiroshige and company do their thing all of 45 minutes from your house, you do it.

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