If you love your child, send her out into the world

Coming back from an unexpected hiatus to comment on another unexpected hiatus, yes?

2015 has been a pretty eventful year for Hello! Project, and I would love to comment on all the big things that have happened, such as Tsunku stepping down as producer due to cancer complications, or the Great YouTube Reddening, or saying one last goodbye to Berryz, or DID YOU SEE ZUKKI IN “OH MY WISH” HOLY FUCK SHE LOOKS SO GOOD…or finally get around to a series of posts I had planned relating to Sayu and last year’s New York concert. Instead, I’m here to talk about an upcoming graduation (!) that is bound to leave many folks heartbroken and questioning the direction and future of the group that she’s leaving.

It definitely ANGERS ME how much MILEAGE I'm getting out of this photo

It definitely ANGERS ME how much MILEAGE I’m getting out of this photo

Sadly, this won’t be about Kanon Fukuda, who had announced her graduation earlier this year and will be leaving S/mileage Angerme in a few weeks. “But who’s better than Kanyon?” you might ask, whether or not you intended to invoke memories of the late WWE/WCW superstar Chris Klucsarits. This, to the surprise of everyone, is actually about a 9th generation Morning Musume member. AND NO IT’S NOT ZUKKI YOU HEARTLESS PRICK

On October 30th, 2015, Riho Sayashi shook the idol world by announcing her intention to graduate from Morning Musume at the end of this year.

...and now this smug little thing is on her way out too

…and now this smug little thing is on her way out too

I’m just as shocked as you are, especially with how soon her last day with the group is relative to the announcement. I mean, why so soon? Aren’t we supposed to be given a longer heads up nowadays so Up Front can milk our wallets dry with merchandise we could have more time to come to terms and emotionally prepare? And why is the group’s ace leaving while the group’s current momentum is still hot, and just as she herself is about to become legal hit her idol prime? This suspiciously fast-tracked process raises a lot of questions and is bound to confuse and frustrate many a fan. And yet, as the news brewed in my mind for the rest of that day, I thought about the official statements given, the observations made by other fans, and some of the things Hello! Project has done during her tenure, and I had come to the conclusion that this could actually be the start of something really big and interesting.

Continue reading