To be filed under “Items That Maybe Should Be in the Weekender But Naw” comes this tale that I just now removed from said Weekender because I was looking at it and thinking to myself, nothing about this makes me think that it’s either that big a deal nor not a deal at all, and sometimes stupid things need to be demonstrated as being stupid.
So the story, such as it is, is encapsulated in a very low-key way in this blog post from the Cursed Idols:
— じゅじゅ (@jyujyu_info) December 14, 2018
tl;dr version: Chunpi was quietly carrying on a relationship of some sort with some fan, against the rules, and was caught and apologized in that unique way that only idols can and cleared up with the fan that this totes wasn’t romance bro and everybody walks away feeling just fine, with producer-san vowing to keep a tighter leash on things.
And that’s it! I can imagine Chunpi dropping a ganbare fist just thinking about it. There are no consequences for her nor, I presume, the fan, and everybody seems to be strolling away and clapping one another on the back for a job well done. The very definition of a tempest in a teapot!
Don’t mistake this post as me saying that it’s bad that there are no consequences. Quite the opposite; I’m ecstatic that the entire routine is basically Performative Meeting Of Idol Obligations 101, and even at that the parties involved are probably mostly concerned about a little bit of egg on their face than anything else. Will Chunpi lose cheki dollars? Possibly, because wota will be the last thing to change in idol, but also possibly not, because the vast majority of wota are in fact sane and adult humans with the mental capacity to distinguish between things that are good and things that are bad, and even if Chunpi were to elope and marry and return several months later with a family of adopted werewolf former orphans in tow and a tattoo on her face, I think most folks would say, hey, that’s good for Chunpi, but why did she get a tattoo on her face.
I’m just reflecting on how Performative Meeting of Idol Obligations has, in the past, been cause for the kinds of drama that take down entire promotions (well, that and their being hellholes to work in), or used as a screen to graduate members and build hype. Like, the Zenkimi episode, now two entire years’ in hindsight, couldn’t feel more like a dumber bit of protracted drama. Speaking again of the general intelligence of wota, I think most people in these situations understand that the drama is in fact canned, and that everybody has a role to play for the show to go off as it must, and so they play along. Hell, I still get a little bit upset on Gomochi and Aza’s behalf, and I’m perfectly willing to believe that they helped to contrive their own demise. Teeth, including mine, were gnashed at the notion that nothing in idol ever changes, but I believe that it was the whole point.
Now here we are, two years later, writing literally hundreds of words to reflect that, hey, isn’t it neat that an idol of enough prominence to have won some of those idol competitions can do basically whatever she wants as long as nobody finds out about it, which seems to be the only actual problem with her private account and relational carrying-on with another person, and even then gets frowned at and that’s it. It’d be nice if the pantomime weren’t necessary at all; perhaps it will be soon.
And that’s that. The story is actually pretty stupid, but it’s a nice vehicle for making a Big Point, ain’t it.
If you’re finding yourself saying, gee, that’s all great I guess but who is JyuJyu, I understand entirely. This is, for my money, one of the chika+ scene’s best and most accomplished and seasoned projects, but they’re managed so peculiarly that they’re bizarrely underappreciated among Westerners and cruelly underexposed. Go listen to their most recent album and tell me just how hard you agree that they’re great as hell.