Discussion in 'General Nogizaka46 Discussion' started by spoiledleftie, May 21, 2014.
Starting one because would like to share my N46 handshake experience from this past weekend!
5/18 Port Messe Nagoya
This is my first time at a handshake-only event in Japan (did AKB 2shot on 5/17 but not much to write about other than what I already said on twitter), so I made a point to see as many members as I can win without overcrowding the schedule for each slot.
I met: Kitano Hinako (oshi), Fukagawa Mai, Matsumura Sayuri, Akimoto Manatsu, Ikoma Rina, Wakatsuki Yumi, Ito Marika, Eto Misa, Hori Miona, Nakamoto Himeka, Sakurai Reina, Ikuta Erika, Higuchi Hina and Ito Karin. I got 1-2 tickets for most of them because I really only wanted to see them in person but have nothing to say, got 3 for Maimai and 12 for Kiichan.
I opened every handshake with "I really wanted to meet you so I flew all the way from HK" and it elicited pretty good reactions from all of them. Most of them replied with the standard "omg thank you so much" but they were all smiles the entire time and overall it was a very pleasant experience.
The reports below are ranked from least interesting/memorable to most memorable members, rather than by slots.
So I'll start with Sayuringo, Hori, Ikuta, Ikoma and Wakasama (1 ticket each)
- There's not much to say about Sayuringo/Ikuta encounters because it's really really standard "thank you for coming" and then I was shoved out. Ikuta was very business-like but it was the final slot of the day and I think she just wanted to get it over with.
- Hori was more or less the same but she got extra brownie points because she dressed up as Sheeta from Castle in the Sky.
- Ikoma is really cute in person, very sincere and down to earth but not much to add because only had one ticket and was shoved out pretty soon.
- Wakatsuki was in girly outfit with her hair hanging down but still cannot shake off the "Wakasama" ikemen persona.
Next up is Manattan, Captain, and Misa (2 tix for Cap and 1 tix each for Manattan/Misa
- Manatsu's handshake is every bit like the hype, very gf-like. I held her right hand with my hands and her left hand was rubbing the back of my right hand the entire time. Asked for the famous zukkyun and was rewarded handsomely.
- Captain was in a good mood the whole day because she had her birthday event after 3rd slot. I went to see her during the final slot but she was still very bubbly. She jumped with joy when I told her I'm from overseas and said she'll def try to come to HK.
- Misamisa is really really pretty in person but she's a bit on the thin side. Complimented my Japanese as soon as I said I was from overseas. Congratulated her on making senbatsu and then was shoved out.
Now onto Marikka, Himetan and Higuchi
- Marikka's face is so round that I just wanted to pinch it! Told her that Seven no Teen is a massive hit on twitter, and that her 3rd single bonus vid in Korea was great and I hope she makes another in Hong Kong.
- Himetan was REALLY cute in person with ribbons and a cute dress. Same voice/demeanor as seen on TV. Of course was hit by Himetan Beam.
- Higuchi is also super pretty in person, in a very traditional-Japanese-woman kind of way. The smile and the voice is to die for, her rank went up a lot after I met her.
Now onto Fukagawa Mai (Slot 1 2tix, Slot 2 1 tix)
- I had wanted to start my day with Kiichan but I was really nervous. So I decided to go to Maimai's lane first because I heard her handshakes are really soothing - and it really was! She was very personable and patient and responded like friends catching up on old times. She also swung her arms sideways back and forth during the handshake, and I wondered whether she could keep up with this all day. But it did calm me down a lot. For slot 2 I told her that I'd be back to see her in August, and she had this huge smile on her face then made me promise...of course!
Then Ito Karin (2 tix)
- This was actually my 2nd most anticipated meeting, because I had been paying attention to her since 2nd gen debut (she has high cheekbones and I'm a huge fan of that, my wife has this facial feature too). The fact that she used to be a wota added more points. She was really fun to talk to and very straight-forward with her responses. She thought it was incredible/bordering inconceivable that I am from overseas. Def going to get her tickets for August.
Finally Kitano Hinako, the main reason why I went to this event (3 slots, 4 tickets each, stacked not looped)
She is too cute. Words cannot describe and pictures do not do her justice at all.
1st slot - told her I am from overseas and that she has a following in both Chinese/English-speaking fandom, as her blog gets translated into both languages. She seemed very surprised to hear that but other than "wow" "really?" "thanks" she did not say much. However the smiles were rewarding enough!
2nd slot - told her that I am in love with her smile and I think it's the best in all of 46. Also told her that despite not making it to 9th senbatsu, I will always support her wherever she is and she just needs to be herself, learning things at her own pace. She spoke a bit more and seemed to relax a bit.
3rd slot - I felt like she kind of recognized me (or I'm just full of myself lol). I told her that I am really happy to have finally met her in person because I've been her fan since debut. Asked her for the rawr pose and got a really cute one! Also told her that I already got her handshake tickets for August. To my surprise she actually talked and asked me to comment on her blog, then asked for my name! Now I don't really care if she did it as a way to get more fans or we had actually make some sort of connection, the gesture alone is enough to make me feel like a million bucks after the handshake. Repetition does pay off!
Observations, Things to Note, Suggestions
Feels like Nogizaka in general is pretty good at these, certainly less horror stories than AKB. There was also the fact that I had some real salty responses from the 2shot event on 5/17, so maybe that experience made Nogizaka responses seem godly. Basically they kept up their smiles the whole time, and some went as far as holding onto my hands and talking even after I was shoved out of the booth, where they had to kinda bend themselves around the partition to keep talking to me.
Obviously, though, this experience is very personal and it's guaranteed that your mileage will vary. The thing to remember, though, is that if you're a first-timer and you only have 1-2 tickets, don't expect the members to be too responsive. They don't know you, and it's likely that they won't see you again, and you don't really know too much about them, so it's likely that the conversation will stay at "thank you for coming to see me" level. The consolation is that at least they will appear to be cordial and you won't walk away disappointed because of a salty response. If you want to at least have some kind of convo, then you basically have to go multiple times, and read up on news/blogs as information from those are great conversation topics. Brushing up on Japanese will definitely help.
In my short time as a 48/46 fan I've come to like mid-tier/under/kks more so than senbatsu, because a) less controversies (ie antis) b) it's fun to watch them work their way up and c) their photos are cheaper (1 set of Naachan is maybe 3-4 sets of Karin, or 2.5 sets of Kiichan). I have always wondered how these members differ from senbatsu members in terms of responding to fans - I had always assumed that these non-senbatsu members would put more efforts than senbatsu to gain fans, and I felt that really is the case after this event. It's not that senbatsu members don't care, but rather the non-senbatsu were far more responsive and you could feel that they really want to make a connection with their fans (esp the repeaters). Of course one could always say that they're just doing it to gain more fans and that deep down they really don't care that much, but who knows for sure? As for me, if I can walk out of these events feeling like a million bucks, then they're doing something right.
How long of a wait per member was it? I'm assuming 2nd gen lines were a lot faster than senbatsu member lines.
I am not sure if it's because of the venue (not in Tokyo) or all of the Nogizaka handshakes are managed this way, but the crowd control was really good.
Basically there are two checks - one is at the top of the line (the "e" in entrance), and you're only allowed to go into the main area if you have tickets for that slot. Once you pass this check you can then go line up at the individual tables for ID check and then line up for the member. If there is a birthday event then they clear the entire hs area (so even if you had tickets for the next slot you still can't stay in it). There is also a 30 min break (and 1hr between slots 2 and 3) between slots so most people just go outside or go to the free area to hang out.
There is no separate pre-queue area like they had at the akb48 2shot, so once you're done with a member you go line up for your next one, or go outside if you're done for the slot. Once each slot reaches the one-hour mark then the entrance line is reopened and you can line up to be checked for next slot.
Despite having won several sold out slots for senbatsu members (captain, sayuringo, hori, etc), the longest I waited in their lines is maybe 20 mins tops. Most of the under/2nd gen also went by really fast. I think the longest was Himetan which was almost 25 mins because she only had 2 slots but was popular, so everyone went to her for 4th slot.
My slot 1 went like this:
- arrived at 8:30, lined up for door opening at 9:30
- wait in main line until 9:45 when they start checking tickets to make sure you have slot 1 tix
- wait in maimai line, maimai comes out at 10:05, was done by 10:15
- then go see kiichan, there was no line so was done by 10:18
- then go line up for sayuringo and was in line for 15 mins
- slot 1 done by 10:35
again i'm not sure if this is because it's not in tokyo, but both maimai and sayuringo had sold out slot 1, so i was really surprised that i didn't have to wait forever. same goes for manatsu/misa/hori/etc, where i had tickets to their sold-out slots but didn't wait for more than 15-20 mins.
^ Think it varies, when i went yokohama handshake they got 2 halls so 1 was for handshake 1 was for trading/free area + goods
but did they have the two-fold check where you could only enter the hs hall/area if you had tickets for that slot? i'm going to the tokyo one in august and want to plan accordingly hahahah
I think the two-check thing applies to any venue, at yokohama they had it too
i wonder why this thread is so dead..i really wanna hear your guys experience during meeting with ngzk members.. or is it no one actually attend ngzk handshake?
No handshake today, but I did go to Principal, and figured I'd write down my experience:
Arrived about an hour early, which was pretty swell, people hadn't even started up lining as even the line building is now handled by Nogizaka staff. Eventually got into the venue around 10 minutes before scheduled venue opening after a bag check and some body scan performed on me by a pretty onee-san. Inside there were lots of flowers lined up, first the normal ones like Nogidoko staff, Nogibingo staff, Bananaman, Okada Ijiri etc, and then the stairway and downwards was decorated with flowers (and flower stands) sent by fans. Nanase received the most ones, followed by Minami and Noujou for some reason.
My seat was located on the first floor, near the front, which was even better than it sounds. Perfect view over the entire stage, and close enough to be able to see the girls' faces perfectly even when they were as far back as they could go on the stage.
After hearing from the staff & Reika about how you use the Kobo reading pad to vote, and viewing a VTR (or live cam, I can confirm this on Thursday) with actor Jirou Satou playing the role of Sony Music Entertainment's Konno (who is the chairman of Nogizaka's management committee for the knowing), the girls got out on stage and they almost immediately started announcing who is auditioning for which role.
After the announcement the girls who picked the same role had to, group after group, audition for the role by first of all individually holding a very short speech on why you should vote for them, and then performing a short skit, randomly pulled out of a box. (After pulling a skit, they also have 30 seconds to divide the roles by themselves). Even Kawago-P, who won her role on walkover got the chance to pick a member to perform a 2-man skit with, because hey, this is half the fun.
Quick version version is Miona & Nyansayu slayed this part.
So, first off was Ikuchan, Karin and Marika auditioning for the lead role - Princess Porin.
Ikuchan's appeal was that since she's often called Erika-sama, it only makes sense that she should become the princess, and that even though she's did this role the first day, each performance of Principal differs from the other due to the ever-changing cast, so she might even show a completely different Porin compared to the first one.
Karin stated that she, as an un-promoted 2nd gen, taking the lead role will be a big chance for her to make an impact on people (and get promoted quicker). She did some really good sweet talking by mentioning that Nogizaka is the only thing she's doing right now - she's not going to university (lol Ichiki diss) nor working (lol Maichun diss).
Marika argued that she's the only one who's actually 18, hence most natural for the role. She was also confident that she'd do a great job.
The skit they did is called "Real Estate," which is about a couple looking for a house, so they go to look at one they heard was super cheap. Marika played the suspicious boyfriend, Karin did the girlfriend who is insistent on taking it and Ikuchan did the sketch realtor who's trying to get it sold quickly. While they do have a script, they are allowed to improvise, and the chosen character's personality, gestures et cetera are up to the girls themselves. Marika's guy role became a scaredy cat who puts on a tough front, Karin was over the top girly, while Ikuchan really took the sleazy sketch salesman thing to a whole new level.
The overall most natural actor was Ikuchan by far, and also the funniest. Hardly viewed the script at all. It was kinda fun seeing Marika talk in a deep voice though, and honestly I just really like her so my vote went for her. Karin's did a good too, nothing spectacular, but not bad.
Second line-up was Ikoma, Miona and Naachan auditioning for the male role Rosario
Ikoma started off directly by mentioning that she has "something of a big election" coming up, and before she appears in that one she'd like to land one of the big 10 roles at least once. That's all she really desires, only once - before the elections - and she's satisfied for the rest of the principal period. Winning on Nogizaka ground is more important than... that other group's one, and if she can't even do that she won't be able to enjoy Saturday properly.
Miona mentioned that she really wants to do a male role, and that she even put up her hair in a ponytail today to appear manlier.
Naachan - Starts off by kind of apologetically saying that even though she's from Osaka, she's very bad at comedy. She also mentioned that this was the third time in a row she's tried out for this role.
They pulled the exact same skit as the previous group, but it ended up completely different. Ikoma did the realtor, Miona did the girlfriend and Naachan did the boyfriend. While Ikoma didn't portray her role that differently from Ikuchan, the big change lied in Miona's portrayal of the girlfriend character - she played a total bitch who showed no interest in anything, all while moving her mouth as if she was chewing chewing gum - complete with sound - the entire time. Naachan however was more like.... Naachan... who apparently was a boy... who was dating Miona. There really was no impact to her performance at all, sadly.
Despite Naachan being one of my absolute top idols out there, I ended up voting Miona due to her performance here. She completely outclassed the other two. Ikoma wasn't bad though. And Naachan was cute, that's all that matters in the end.
The third line-up was a big group of five - Maaya, Minami, Hinako, Yumi, Reika - auditioning for Governor Christine
Maaya argued that she's tall, which suits a politician.
Minami & Hinako both said that they'll work hard since they've got many rivals. Minami in a calm, Minamish way, Hinako shouting.
Yumi said that today she felt like trying out a motherly role, while warning everyone that this might be the last time you'll ever see her do it so vote. <- She's smart.
Reika mentioned that the character in question is often referred to as a flashy/gaudy mother, and that people always tell her she has a gaudy face, so she's a perfect match for the role.
The skit they drew is called Rooftop, but as the role division this time was a complete mess, unfinished even when they hit the 30 seconds limit, and the overall skit also turning into something of a failure, I never really understood the whole thing. The general story was however, as far as I understood, that there's a girl who's broken up with her boyfriend and therefore is sad and tries to commit suicide by jumping off the roof, then the people who try and make her stop keep increasing one by one. First two strangers, then her mom, and finally her boyfriend. Reika played the sad girl, Hinako played the first person who tries to stop her, Yumi played a funny old man, Maaya played her mother, and Minami was supposed to do the boyfriend role.
I said supposed to, because she actually never got in due to them reaching the time limit before her cue. The skit got delayed by at least 15 seconds due to not properly getting splitting up the roles - only Reika as the sad girl was decided on. Feeling the pressure they started off pretty drastically from there, but encountered issues pretty quickly as Hinako had issues reading her script, which wasn't made easier by the fact that she had very long lines. Once Yumi's cue finally arrived she helped out a lot by reading out the kanji for her though, but it basically meant each line was read out twice. For the most of the skit it was only those three, until at some point Maaya runs in and introduces herself as the mother. At this point the passive girls who weren't part of this skit sitting close to where Minami was standing was starting to call for her and telling her to run in, mentioning that there's only a little time left. Yumi managed to catch on to this and ran over to her and said "Just come to the center of the stage and improv something," leading to Minami asking where in the script they were at right now, so to make a smooth entrance... And then the time was up and the skit was over.
I know quite a few people believe Minami is one of those idols that don't really care about shit, but she looked so frustrated when it ended, to the point where her face even turned red, and although she tried hard to hold them back, tears kept pouring out of her eyes. A few members came to hug her and help her back to her seat, although she kept insisting she's fine. Yumi also went over to ask if she was okay once she was seated, which was really cute. As Minami's my oshimen I obviously voted for her despite not doing anything. The big hero of the skit was Yumi though, who worked really hard trying to make this entire thing work.
There were no auditionees for the fourth role, Elza, so they explained that afterwards people can vote for all girls to do it, and the person with the highest votes, who didn't win their own role, gets it.
I voted Minami because she's my oshimen.
For the 5th role, Catherine, there were as many as six auditionees, and therefore they were separated into two different skits - First off Kanarin and Maichun
Kanarin explained that this is the fourth time in a row she's trying out for this role, and tried to convince people that if you repeat Kanarin fast several times it becomes Catherine. (kanarinkanarinkanarinkanarinkanarinkanarin...catherine).
Maichun one-upped her saying this is the fifth time she's trying out for it, although not in a row. She also mentioned that she went to the theater straight from her OL work.
The skit they did is called Steakhouse, which is basically about a person who's not particularly fond of meat but enters a steakhouse anyway cause it's supposedly famous, and her difficulties ordering from the waitress. Character-wise, Kanarin went for someone who was wtf at everything happening, while Maichun pulled the typical part timer who lazily reads out of the menu because she has to.
Neither were either amazing or bad, and they cooperated well together. Being said, I didn't vote for either of them.
As for the remaining four - Maimai, Yuttan, Rena, Himetan
Maimai said she'll try her hardest
Yuttan said she ~might~ try her hardest followed by a wink <- lol
Rena mentioned she hasn't been here since the first day, but wants to do her best the days she's participating, and wants to get to know Nogizaka better.
Himetan tried the same thing as Kanarin, only to conclude that it doesn't work with "Himetan."
The skit they did was Interrogation, which is basically Himetan playing the criminal, and the remaining three playing detectives, taking turns interrogating her. Himetan went for a spoiled brat approach, character-wise. Maimai went for a violent, angry cop character, Yuttan for a sexy cop who tried to seduce Himetan, and Rena went deranged, starting off quiet (as in almost whispering) and nice, but eventually turning loud and verbally abusive.
Himetan's role was technically the most active since she got to respond to everyone, but also ended up being the most boring one. Maimai won my vote for being the complete opposite of her normal character, although her acting was kind of a disaster and she had a hard time holding back her laughter.
The role for the character Bell ended up a duel between Amiami and Misamisa
Amiami "The smiles of all of you, everyone here, in front of me. Are my happiness" <- Basically.
Misamisa said it's her fourth time in a row, and she thinks she'll do this role very well while giving it a mature touch.
They did the skit Movie PR, which is a short interview between a reporter and an actress about her appearance in an upcoming murder mystery thriller. Ami went kinda deadpan NHK reporter, while Misamisa went all-out burikko.
Both were actually very funny, and I recall many people in the crowd saying things like "Wow strong battle" as soon as they got announced as a 2-way battle. The actress role, however, is the one who pulls the punch line in this skit, so Misa had an advantage. I did end up voting for her although I actually contemplated on picking Ami.
Seventh role Maquia had 4 auditionees - Seitan, Maiyan, Asuka & Manattan
Seitan was very straightforward and expressed that she only wants to do this, because this character basically is her.
Maiyan mentioned her goal is to basically try out as many roles as possible
Asuka mentioned she's tried out for this role several times now and really wants to do it, and is confident she'll do it well.
Manattan was confident, because she's next to Asuka and due to her face being twice as big the focus will be redirected to her.
They did the Wedding skit, which takes place at a wedding reception where the bride is receiving a speech from her three best friends. At first it's only nice stories, but they gradually turns worse, basically making the bride sound like a complete good for nothing. Maiyan played the bride, and went for a bimbo character. Manattan was weep-talking with a heavy accent, Asuka was happy-go-lucky and Seitan spoke in an incredibly deep voice.
This skit was so script dependent that it left little room for improvised reactions apart from Maiyan's role, which was a shame in my opinion. I guess Manattan tried the hardest out of the three friend roles, but I ended up voting for Maiyan.
For the Pam role there was yet another trio - Macchun, Kotoko & Kazumin
Macchun did a Sayuringo Punch, as many commenters on her blog had asked her to do it at Principal.
Kotoko said she wants to land a big role at least once.
Kazumin said that although she went for the Pam role this time, she has memorized the Elza role completely, and is fine with doing that in case she loses, so people should vote for her there. <- This led into all of the girls, including the ones sitting down to shout about how she's cheating / being sly. Even Jirou Satou who was doing the announcements reacted like "wowowow this woman" lol. Macchun said she only wants Pam though.
They, just like the previous trios pulled the Real Estate skit. During the role selection period the two super senpais first asked Kotoko which she wanted to do, who replied that she's fine with anything. Therefore they let her be the realtor, while they played the couple. It took like 20 seconds for them to decide who plays the guy and who plays the girl though - it ended up being Macchun boyfriend, Kazumin girlfriend because it goes against their images. Kazumin went mega burikko, Macchun was horny and decided to just touch Kazumin everywhere while reading her lines. Kotoko, rather than acting, basically just read from the script happily, which made everyone laugh, and Macchun to go out of character for a second and comment that she and Kazumin are trying their hardest but she's the one getting responses.
They all kinda sucked in terms of acting, but I wanted to see more Macchun so I voted for her. Plus Kazumin did her Elza appeal.
The villain role Luida was another 5-way tie, this time between: Chiharu, Rotty, Sayu, Renachi & Tomato
Chiharu mentioned she's tried out for this role several times, and that she really wants to do it.
Rotty basically a repetition of above, but also saying she's got confidence in her evil role.
Sayu "Sayunyan is justice, but this time I applied for an evil role. I watch a lot of hero shows, so I know how evil works. I warn you, Sayu's Luida is scary!"
Renachi claimed that she doesn't have as many chances as the full members, but she really wants to do Luida and will try until she gets it.
Tomato said that up until now she's only really tried out for Pam, and thought she'd do that this time as well, but for some reason she marked down Luida. However, seeing it she selected Luida she figured she really wants to do her too.
The Skit they received was Robbery. They selected their roles surprisingly quick, and Sayu looked amazingly satisfied with her robber role. The others played clerks / customers trying to bribe her with useless stuff so that she won't kill everyone. Chiharu was orderly and tried to keep the situation calm, Rotty was high or something, Renachi was an old lady and I never understood what Tomato was.
Having done solo stage play work just before this might have helped, but Sayu is possibly the strongest (stage) actress in all of Nogi. Great articulation, was very expressive and even improvised some, as well as corrected Renachi when she was reading Tomato's line <- this while staying in character. Her robber role also had every other line, which kind of explained why she looked so smug before they started. I'd probably have voted for her even if she was against Minami. Chiharu did a good job too though, deserves credit for that, but overall it was a mass slaying.
Kawago-P was a walkover victory, but she got to do an appeal anyway. She basically just said "Today I had something! And that is... luck!!!" Then she got to select a partner for a skit, she picked Kanarin cause she was the closest one.
They did the Movie PR one, with Kawago-P in the actress role. They basically just got it over with it quickly, but Kawago-P did the punchline well. I voted for her.
After everyone had done their skits there was a 10 minute voting period. After the voting period, fake Konno appeared in yet another VTR, and after that, a livecam from backstage popped up with Manattan -> Tomato -> Himetan all appearing in succession talking about Principal, their hairstyles etc. After a while, they also call in Nene and Nanamin, who've been absent from the shows due to sickness, but were there watching the show today.
Nene tells everyone she's finally gotten her voice back, and goes on to ask people to support her partner (Marika), who sent her a beautiful text the second day saying "I'll work hard for both of us so please rest well so we can be on stage together asap." She also says she hasn't replied to the text yet, but since her partner has to work for two people she'll make sure to rest for two people. <- OTP
Nanamin pulls an improvised reader question for Himetan asking if she's ever destroyed anything with her Himetan Beam. It's not that dangerous. Sayurin appears from out of nowhere and says she destroyed Osaka today with her Sayuringo Punch. Manattan destroys the audience's hearts with her zukkyun.
All the girls are called up on stage and the winners are announced one by one.
Princess Porin - Ikuchan
Rosario - Miona
Christine - Yumi
Elza - Kazumin
Catherine - Rena
Bell - Misamisa
Maquia - Maiyan
Pam - Macchun
Luida - Sayu
Estelle - Kawago-P
Six minor roles (based on most amount of total votes):
Meg - Manattan
Elizabeth - Minami <- This was a miracle that caused standing ovations. She looked so happy too. T_T
Servant 1 - Ami
Servant 2 - Naachan
Servant 3 - Maimai
Servant 4 - Karin
Once the result announcement ended, the girls who had received a role exited the stage, and the remaining girls got to do an optional final appeal. Ikoma was first to grab the mic, once again mentioning that she really wants to land a role before the sousenkyo, and also mentioning that this is way more important for her than the AKB event itself. Second in line was Kanarin, but I didn't listen to what she was saying cause I was busy staring at the girls breaking up the line in order to let Renachi come through, who by then was weeping her eyes out. Once Kanarin was forced to end because she was chattering away, Renachi basically just said she'll try harder (for Luida) on Thursday.
Following her, Marika, mentioned that it was really frustrating to see both of her fellow auditionees pass, while she didn't. Then she claimed that since acting is really one of her talents, instantly correcting this to "I mean since I really love acting," she really want to appear as much as possible. Following her came Kotoko who said that she also knows Elza completely, so if it's open again please vote for her instead of Kazumin, and finally Maichun who didn't say anything of value. Everyone else opted out. Especially Asuka, she was like halfway through the door the entire time.
Since they went overtime with this, the promised 30 minute break became a 15 minute one, so I just sat around a bit and talked to my neighbours until the show started. The biggest topic in the entire room was the miracle that is Minami Hoshino, who captured everyone's hearts with her display of frustration and cute face.
For the actual show - I found parts of it to be completely hilarious, though I noticed that quite a few of the jokes - or even scenes - were re-used from the director's most famous work Yuusha Yoshihiko, although put in a setting to match the story's. I imagine this was more intentional than sheer laziness though, and I can't really complain because I utterly loved that show. There was also lots of Nogi in-jokes that were based on the girl acting, so I imagine these might have been improvs. All skilfully executed nonetheless.
I can't imagine there being a better lead & villain combo than Ikuchan and Sayu. They are by miles the two strongest stage actresses in Nogi, so them doing the characters with the most lines and overall interactions was a result I believe I am lucky to have experienced. Also, despite being advertised as big characters, apart from Porin, Luida, Bell, Maquia and Pam, everyone else actually does multiple roles.
Since I know some people are interested in the actual story I figured I'd provide a summary (full of spoilers) by the way:
The story starts out with Porin (Ikuchan) being on her home planet worrying about her parents that haven't returned, so she decides to go look for them where she was told they'd be - the planet Nubia. Catherine (Rena), who according to the pamphlet is a commander, tries to stop her explaining that traveling through space alone is far too dangerous for a video game nerd who's never ever left the planet. She also mentions she has duty to stay well because one day she'll succeed her mother as the governor. This leads into a monologue of Porin imitating her mother - Ikuchan in this case rolls around on the floor, does opera, among other things, so I imagine this is improv - but Catherine keeps trying to stop her.
At that time Elza comes in - and I don't know if it's because of Kazumin, but she has a very funny walk. (Prob was because of Kazumin because Rena burst out in laughter.) Elza convinces Catherine it is okay for Porin to go on this journey, however, she has to have three friends to journey with her, so she calls in five servants, one after one who audition to become Porin's party members. All of them with rather useless skills.
The first one to come in is Megu (Red), who's special skill is recommending movies.
Second one is Bell (Blue), who's special skill is calculation - when saying this she's asked hard questions by Catherine to see if she's legit. Like... 3+5, 9+4 and 2+3. After managing to clear all, Elza and Catherine is convinced she's the real deal, while Porin questions the difficulty of these calculations.
The third one to appear is Maquia (Yellow), Who's special skill is that she keeps spacing out.
Fourth is Elizabeth (Green), who texts her boyfriend every day. Rereads all his replies, thinks about him all the time and really really loves him. Everyone points out that this isn't a talent, and Ikuta points out she's just a clingy woman (重い女 - lit. Heavy woman). I don't know if this is an in-joke, since it's Minami who played this role but she replies that she's indeed getting kinda fatter lately. Kazumin follows up with that bringing a heavy woman aboard the ship might reduce the max speed of the ship. <- this made girls crack up so I don't know if it's an improv or script.
The fifth and final servant is Pam (Pink), who is very sickly and is allergic to almost everything else. Porin worries because she looks like she's about to die any minute, but Elza insists that having someone with lots of allergies might help her out.
^In case you don't understand the colour things, they're basically a Super Sentai parody.
Either way, Porin is told to select three of them, and the five girls, plus Ikuchan begin to sing a shortened Romance no Start, fully live of course. Sounded surprisingly good. Misa came through nicely.
Once the song ends they leave exit the stage and the props are replaced with a big throne with a wonderful lovely Sayu on it. As soon as the stage lights up, speaks a few lines while walking down from her throne, only to begin singing Tsuki no Ookisa together with her four handmaidens. As the line-up was Sayu, Ami, Nanase, Maimai & Karin, the voice blend was a whole lot deeper than normal, but I kind of liked it.
After the song ends, Luida (Sayu) immediately starts speaking out her evil plan to take over Nubia, Porin's planet, using her dark magic. Her handmaidens thinks she's scary and begs her to reconsider, which makes her punish them one by one by using her most potent spell - a spell that forces the victim into doing embarrassing things uncontrollably, while they remain completely conscious. Ami was forced to do Ken Shimura, Nanase did Fujisaki Market, Maimai did Yoshio Kojima, and Karin who decided to betray her friends saying she doesn't agree with them in hopes of escaping punishment got a serial punishment, being forced to say four catchphrases that became popular last year (Ima deshou, Omotenashi, Jejeje, Baigaeshi).
While Luida is punishing her handmaidens, Christine (Yumi) and Rosario (Miona) - who are guests at the castle - enter, wondering what's happening. Luida then reveals her plan to take over their planet, and casts her spell on Christine forcing her to do Harumi Edo's "Gugugugu" routine. From here on everyone who's cursed start saying words from their routines that fit into the context of the dialogue, but it's only really funny if you understand the original jokes, or Japanese in general. In the end, Minami and Manattan, now playing handmaidens come to carry the royal couple out, and Rena, now playing advisor / assistant of Luida, appear to tell her that Porin is traveling towards Neptune.
The scenery changes to some yellow planet, and Porin - together with Bell, Maquia and Pam - exit the space ship to meet up with a gas station attendant (played by Kazumi). They discuss the price of refueling the ship, which is told by the litre. Bell uses her counting skills to figure out how much the totals is, and Kazumin calls her assistants to do the dirty work (Played by all minor role owners + Yumi). Each of them in order ask Porin a question like "Do you want me to check the engine for you?" which progressively turn into "Do you want me to heat it up for you?" and "Is it okay if I fart."
Once all the gas station assistants had gotten their task, Estelle (Kawago-P) and evil Rena appear and tell Porin that Estelle is Neptune's strongest warrior, and that they're there to defeat her. As Porin prepares for battle, however, Estelle tells her that battle is not necessary, because she's eaten a powerful devil fruit, giving her the power to make people fall in love with her (Horehore no Mi), which she uses on all of them, although it has no effect on Maquia because she's spacing out. Once it's in effect, she asks all of them to compliment her, which they all do one time each saying standard things like "Strong" "Beautiful" et cetera. Maquia begins laughing at the previously mentioned fart question, but Porin tells Estelle to ignore it. The mesmerised party runs out of ideas pretty quick, but Porin ends up saying "Despite being a poison tongue normally, does really well at handshake events," the other two both say pass after some time thinking. Rena starts scolding them for not coming up with more things to say, which leads to Porin saying "Oh I saw the Rakuten CM the other day" which turned into a quick "I do not appear at all! (一切出てません)" - something Kawago-P once said on Nogidoko, which made her temporarily trend on twitter.
As Estelle decides that it's fine anyway, and suggests that they should go back to Luida's castle, Maquia runs off and comes back with a giant club, which she uses to beat up Estelle and evil Rena. As she does so, the spell breaks and Porin claims that there is a use to her spacing out after all. Around the same time, gas station attendant Kazumin returns to tell them that their spaceship is fueled up, so they can easily travel on now.
The next scene is evil Rena reporting about their failures to Luida who claims that there's more to Porin than she originally thought, and that she's looking forward to her arrival.
After that, to a nice space backdrop two gundams enter having a conversation about Zakus. One played by Naachan, and one played by Ami (who actually is a Zaku). On the other side, two other robots appear - R2D2 Maimai and what I believe was Tin Man (Wizard of Oz) Karin. The spaceship containing Porin and her party basically just pass these by while talking and that's it.
In the next scene the party arrives at a castle entrance. Miona is looking out from one of the windows and asks what their business is. Porin is advised against revealing her true identity, so she lies about it, but asks if they can enter, to which Miona replies they could but she kinda doesn't want to let them in. She then proceeds to tell Porin her mother is fat, although she hasn't seen her. As she says this, three other figures stick out their heads doing a devilish laughter, then goes back into hiding. I believe it was Manattan, Minami and Karin. I am very certain one was Minami, because she did it incredibly loudly. So cute. Porin is angered by this insult, but her party members tell her to calm down because the gatekeeper Miona is only out to irritate her. Miona proceeds to insult her father, and then also her sister too, each insult turning increasingly long-winded and even kind of complicated, so the party decides to try and find a separate way in. Maquia kinda lags behind, so they go back to pull her with them.
^ This scene is a reference to a scene Monty Python and the Holy Grail, as well as a scene from the second season of the Director's previous work Yuusha Yoshihiko.
The party later finds themselves in a room with four coffins lined up. Porin is getting tired to they advise her to rest there while they split up to search the surroundings. Porin agrees to the idea and sits down to relax. Behind her, one of the coffins slowly begins to open, and a mummy (Amiami) steps out with a huge bat and proceeds to walk up behind her and hit her, only to run back into the coffin when Porin looks back to see what happened. This repeats a few times, although Porin gets more and more suspicious, so whenever she's close to getting caught, Ami returns to her coffin. The audience also helped here, screaming "behind you!" whenever Ami kept walking up on her. Eventually, Ami mistakingly closes her own coffin and has trouble getting in again, so she pretends behind a statue instead. When Porin finally realizes, she screams for help, which makes Ami muster up her force and manage to flee back into the coffin. As Porin tells her party members she's attacked by a mummy they laugh at her and leave again.
This time, once Porin turns her back, all four coffins open (I only know Nanase was one, didn't pay much more attention), and once she notices that she's standing behind them she screams for help. As the party returns before the mummies manage to flee, they go to attack instead. Above them, you can see Luida and evil Rena looking down on them, Luida commenting that her mummies are weaker than she thought, and she asks Rena to let out "that" instead.
^This whole weak monsters with clubs thing is once again from Yuusha Yoshihiko
A loud growling noise suddenly appears, and all the mummies flee the room. The party begins to get scared, as it sounds like a huge dangerous beast. Then a green little thing that resembles Yoda from Star Wars rolls in and speaks in a super high voice. He tells them he's a sage, and that he's on their side, and although they don't believe him at first, he goes on to read their mind ("His voice is so high!"), which makes them trust him. He tells them that to resist Luida's spells, they need to sing and dance, and so a little scene where they all practice dancing begins. Now and then four people wearing Aki-P masks appear, which makes them weaker, but the sage tells them they must resist them. Once they manage to do that, they'll become can defeat Luida. Eventually they complete their task, but are told there's one more condition to fulfil if they want to beat Luida - They need an item - the Sword of Justice. The sage can however not tell them the location of it, so they need to find it themselves.
As they move on, Pam suddenly claims that she's feeling weak because her sword allergy is kicking in, which makes Porin claim that there actually was a use for her. They quickly find the sword stuck in a rock, but as Porin moves up to take it a voice (Kawago-P's) tells them to stop. They get scared and ask if it's the sword's guardian spirit speaking, which she replies is true. They ask her to appear before them, so they can battle for it, and a door in front of them opens, and through the entrance glows a big light, complete with Also sprach Zarathustra playing in the background. Eventually, Kawago-P comes walking out, dressed up as a museum guard. She asks for their visitor card, which none of them have because they took a different way in - or so they thought. Maquia actually received one at the entrance when everyone thought they were spacing out. When Porin asks if she can take the sword, she says she can borrow it for 10 minutes as long as she signs the lending list, then walks out again reminding everyone to properly return the sword within 10 minutes.
After being very dramatic about pulling out the sword, they proceed to the next room, where they're greeted by Luida's voice. At this point Maquia bursts out in laughter about the sage's high voice, but Luida doesn't understand this and becomes pissed (Sayu is speaking with a kinda deep voice for this role). Eventually she comes into the room carrying a knife to begin the final boss battle. She figures she'll solve it without a battle and casts her embarrassment spell on everyone, but they immediately begin performing Aitakatta Kamoshirenai, which blocks it. Luida then takes Maquia hostage, telling Porin to give up, or she'll slit up her throat. Porin attempts to scare Luida into letting go by telling her there's a cockroach by her feet, but she doesn't fall for it, so Porin comes to the conclusion that there's no other option than cutting down her friend together with the evil witch. Right before the blade hits them both however, Maquia reacts to the cockroach thing and crouches down in fear, making Luida take a direct cut, agonising in pain before fleeing the scene.
The party thought they had won, when Luida's voice appears again telling them a puny Sword of Justice is not enough to kill her. On the screen on the wall, a big dragon appears, which is Luida's true form. Porin tries to slash at her to no effect, and Luida returns it by breathing fire at them (which Pam of course is allergic to). Suddenly behind the dragon screen, a player screen resembling the one from Puzzle & Dragons appear, and Porin shout out in joy claiming she's pro at this game. She managed to pull a full combo and beat Luida in three swipes.
After her victory, her parents come out of the room next to them to congratulate her, which surprises her. Christine and Rosario then explains that everything up until now has basically just been a game to test her skills as an upcoming governor, and that they were never really kidnapped for real. Luida also shows up, alive, to come in and go like "yo hey good job." All the minor characters then enter thinking it's time for the final battle, but everyone ignores them cause they're dumb and haven't actually understood this was just a game, and Porin is like whatevs - which leads to the entire cast doing Sonna Baka na before the curtain closes.
After the show ended, they told everyone to be on standby while they prepare for the mini-live. Which meant about a 15 minute break, then all girls present today came out to perform Kizuitara Kataomoi (Rena in Miona position) and Romance no Start, senbatsu members for that single in front, with the UG + 2nd gen behind them. Rotty blocked my view of Minami so I was staring at Sayu the entire time. Her dancing is good.
After the mini-live, all the girls went to the front of the stage and did a collective thank you, before the curtain closing and people were told to get the hell out.
All in all a nice experience. I have two shows left, so I will write my impressions of them as well, as well as if anything differed drastically from this time. I also have two shows of Nogizaka ACT Movie next week, so might write about those too.
I will not, however, write a report like this again. It was very exhausting.
wow, thanks for the write up!
Some minor corrections to my previous post
As far as the role of Elza goes, Kazumi was basically all improvisation. I mean the character is still dumb, but not that dumb.
Rosario and Christine are present when Luida's advisor informs them about Porin heading towards Neptune
Nanamin is tone deaf.
Very tone deaf.
Minami is cute.
Much appreciate your detailed report. Nothing better for us who never been to any Nogi46 events to imagine about our oshi than real-life experience sharing like yours.
And it's surprising to know that Sayunyan's acting was quite impressive.
You just stated the most obvious thing in the universe. I always think Hoshimina is a valuable asset of Nogi46, and her presence in senbatsu should be more appreciated.
^ You're very welcome. Sayu's (stage) acting, based on these four days as well as two times watching her solo work Teiichi no Kuni, I'd say is definitely of a different caliber compared to the rest of the group. She's even highly confident in it herself.
And I appreciate your input on Minami. There's far too many people who misunderstand what she's all about.
So, during the last three days I've went to Principal twice, as well as Nogizaka Act MOVIE twice, and I figured I'd do short reports on all of them, taking up the funniest, or most memorable happenings. I'll present them mostly in bullet point form. Uhm, and yeah, to fully understand everything in this post I recommend you to read my previous, long post.
- The skits this time were of a very high level overall, definitely the best run out of all the ones I attended.
- The big trend this year is Kazumin monomane, which both Maiyan and Manattan did during their skits. Maiyan's was kinda good, Manattan's was very bad.
- Ikoma told a story during her introduction time that the same day, just before the show, she was doing shopping in Harajuku when a middle school girl suddenly shouted out to her "Omg aren't you Nogizaka's center, Ikomachan."
Ikoma was happy to be recognized, as she wasn't wearing any make-up or anything, but responded that she's not center anymore.
This led to the girl calling over her friends, saying that "Nogizaka's center Ikomachan is here" (<-lol) and a middle school boy came up and inspected her closely, only to burst out "YOU'RE TOTALLY WRONG."
Which in turn pissed Ikoma off, so couldn't help herself from bursting out "I'M THE REAL ONE."
- Tomato started off with her usual "I'm Yamato Rina today as well," but with a catch to it. Apparently, when they met that morning, Maimai had told her "Himura-san, good morning" which was a huge shock to her, and hopes her tomato character won't change to a Himura character. Regardless, during the skit she did a Himura monomane the entire duration. She did it pretty well actually.
- Naachan and Nanamin did this skit called Taxi Driver, which I haven't explained. The roles are the driver and the customer. The driver tries to convince the customer that he's an amanojaku, someone who does everything in reverse. However, Naachan put a twist on it, and pretended to be Manattan for this particular scene. Nanamin played along with it beautifully, and there is one part of script that goes "Oh, seems like I'm not an amanojaku after all. Then, maybe I'll try driving against red instead." The general response is "Please don't do dangerous things," but as the driver this time was Manattan, Nanamin responded "You don't have the courage to do that, I know that very well." <- It sounds less funny when you give a long-winded explanation of it, but this caused a major roar in the hall at the time.
Finally, the driver is supposed to take the customer to Shinjuku, but somehow manages to drive to Shinbashi instead - in this case, they took the customer to "Manattan's house."
After the skit, both Naachan and Nanamin went up to Manattan and performed a dogeza.
- The wedding skit for the Luida role was rather special. Rotty performed the bride with a rather nonchalant attitude. Kyouka, who also won, put on some really insane charade, shaking her (rather sizeable) butt after every line. Reika played Mickey Mouse, although felt very ashamed by it so she kept covering her face, and Minami was... Minami. Halfway through she went "Maybe I should do a monomane too... Meh it's fine."
- It was very moving to see Kyouka win the role versus more well-known members such as Minami and Reika, and there was actually a standing ovation during the announcement that lasted for about 20 seconds. Kinako finally landing her Estelle role after fifteen tries was very moving too.
During the break time between vote counting period and announcement, Noujou appeared on the live cam to announce that her mother is actually there watching today, so it'd be pretty embarrassing if she didn't make it. However, everyone aiming for that role this time did really well in the skits this time, so she's not too confident. <- Lots of rep for not mentioning her mother was there during appeal time, as she would probably get lots of free votes if she did, since Nogizaka fans are incredibly nice. I can also confirm that both Catherine skits were the two funniest skits the entire evening.
- Noujou shouted out to her mother saying sorry for not making it.
- Rotty also shouted out to Noujou's mother saying sorry for not making it.
- This was one of the few times Minami didn't make ensemble. However, she decided to not make a final appeal. Instead, she, Maaya & Noujou (after her speech) stood in the back doing a weird dance.
- Tomato said since it didn't work, she'll definitely give up on the Himura character.
- Seitan went up to say congratulations to Kyouka and Kinako, but didn't know their names.
Now, as far as the actual play went:
Maiyan basically picked Porin this time as it was the final role before she completed all 10 main ones. If it wasn't for this, she wouldn't have any interest in doing it. It kinda showed, as she was not very familiar with Porin's script, and there were many slip-ups from her side. To be really fair though, the entire evening was full of slip-ups as Kyouka, Reika, Miona, Kanarin all forgot a line or missed their cue at some point.
Kinako, on the other hand, definitely knew the script of her character, as one should expect after trying out for it fifteen times. For the guardian spirit role, she shouted in her normal voice during the part where she isn't visible, but ended up doing a Sanma-san impression when she came out of the door.
Overall, it was probably the least entertaining main act I got the pleasure to attend - note again that the level of the skits however, were very high.
Also, a final thing worth pointing out is that Nanase was in top shape that evening. During the mini live her movements were extremely fluid, and she looked super confident in her center position. Normally I focus my gaze on Minami or Sayu, but I found myself glued to her this time.
6/12 - Nogizaka Act MOVIE
First to explain how these work - they are, just as the name states, a movie showing. What's being shown is the first Principal from 2012 in it's entire glory. Every day they show a different recording, so every viewing is unique.
Before, in the middle of, and after the viewing, there's also MC corners featuring three members per day.
The MCs this time around were Sayurin, Ikoma and Seitan, with Sayurin being the lead MC. As the lead MC, she had some scripted parts, which she read out in an incredibly monotone voice. As she sounded so monotone, Ikoma suggested she should just move away from the script, but as Sayurin was proud to have remembered the entire thing she kept going on. Sayurin had styled her hair in a different fashion today, claiming she was inspired by Ayase Haruka.
The movie starts with everyone singing (half of) Nogizaka no Uta, leading into a dance examination where everyone's split into three teams (based on name order). After the dance examination, the members of the first team get to do PR for themselves.
- Ikuchan did a solo musical (song created by herself)
- Ikoma talked about how she's actually very girly, and that before joining Nogi she had very long hair
- Marika performed her song from the Oide Shampoo bonus video
- Sayu did a solo tokusatsu scene.
Once the PR session ended, a break time was announced, during which Ikuchan "mysteriously" begins playing piano, accompanied by some ballet from Secchan. This later leads into everyone singing Kokoro no Kusuri, and after that the PR time for the second group begins.
- Rotty sang a song she wrote for her dog, Sasuke. <- It was pretty damn terrific, I must add
- Reika first did a dance performance, then showed off a... rather fail moonwalk.
- Kazumin performed Amazing Grace. Oh and her weird way of talking at the time was so much worse, she's really toned it down.
- Maiyan did an air homerun.
- Kanarin did a talk on how she believes her dad is a Nanase oshi, and that he once said "If you combine Nishino Nanase with Nakada Kana... Nishino Kana"
After this PR session there's yet another dance screening, which leads into the final group's PR time.
- Sayurin walked up with a big Kyuubei (from Madoka something, an anime) plushie that had its eyes masked with a black tape, and basically did the usual talk about how she's the cutest in the universe and how her different personality traits etc make her cute.
- Minami talked about how she had a big test coming up, and that she hasn't been able to study because of this stage play, but she really wants to appear in it so it can't be helped.
Overall, everyone were so nervous during these PR sessions, stumbling on their words, forgetting what to say, tearing up et cetera.
Either way, once the third group finished, they began singing an unreleased song called Tsubomi, which later led into the final half of Nogizaka no Uta.
At this point, there was another MC corner, and the girls talked about their impressions seeing all the self-PR again. They all remember being really amazed by Rotty's song, even crying the first time they heard it. Ikoma said that she thinks it should be added to the 10th single as a coupling song because of how good it is.
Ikoma also pointed out something about herself, and that is that even though she at that claimed she's really girly, and although she was, the thing shown in the video was basically a young boy up to the fashion. She thought it was embarrassing to see herself in that state again.
Sayurin found an opportunity to do PR for the Madoka DVD box, which Nogi actually did the commercial for (her being the center).
After the MC corner, there was the role (or rather, position) announcement, which, after it was over, cut into the actual "musical."
It's really unfair to call the first Principal a musical, as it's more of a mini live. There's three short spoken lines, and then there's five songs in succession before it ends.
After this part finished, there was the final MC.
Ikoma, who had a solo line in Sekkachi no Katatsumuri in the performance they showed this day was completely appalled by how horrible her singing was. Someone in the audience shouted out that it wasn't that bad, to which Ikoma retorted that if you didn't find it horrible there's something seriously wrong with your ears. Sayurin pointed out that Ikoma has really improved a lot since then, mentioning that the Mizutama Moyou from the 2nd Anniversary concert was actually pretty nice. Ikoma said after that performance, Konno told her the same thing.
They talked some more, said bye bye then I left.
First of all, skits:
- Kazumin did a really fail Degawa Tetsurou impersonation and won her role with that.
- Seirarin asked if people have seen the new cover, saying she's not visible in a single one of them. This was followed up by Manatsu saying she's visible in three of them. Which was followed up by Junna saying she didn't even get to join the shoot for it.
- Noujou did a pretty flawless Koda Kumi impersonation, making the funniest skit performance of the evening if I have to say so myself.
- During her appeal time, Sayurin once again mentioned that she had a different hairstyle today. She said that when they met earlier, Minami bursted out that she's styled it like Minami. At this point, Minami started waving to everyone and there were lots of Minami calls, instead of Sayurin ones lol.
- Sayurin and Ikoma did a skit together, but totally did not follow the script at all. Sayurin tried to charm everyone by showing off her butt, which made Ikoma shout out that she's got nothing apart from her butt. Sayurin then held her chest and said "Stop joking around up here there is so--- *in unison with Ikoma* Nothing."
- Sayu played a yanki girlfriend role for the Real Estate skit, pretty much exactly like Miona did the first time I went. Led to her clear victory.
- Yumi won her role on default, but as always still got to do a skit. For her partner she chose Reika, going down on one knee handing her the script and a microphone. As far as the skit goes (The movie PR one), Reika was absolutely hilarious, doing some weird cop impersonation. Tomato was laughing so hard from it she fell off her chair lol.
- Tomato introduced herself with the usual "I'm Yamato Rina today as well," adding "Starting tomorrow I want to become Hashimoto Nanami." For the skit, she did a really fail Reika impersonation.
- Rotty mentioned that yesterday Noujou's mom had told her that she needs to the skits with more conviction, so she'll do her best. Karin said since this is an audition for the evil role, she's gonna do the skit like an evil person, even if she has to ad-lib. After listening to both of these two, Minami went "Wow, you've really worked hard and thought this out."
- Nanamin asked "How do you view me" in which most of the crowd shouted either "Actress" or "Sadist." The answer she was looking for was sadist.
- After the role announcements, Seitan began crying for not making it this time around.
On to the actual main act - This was by far the funniest main act I got to see, with lots of beautifully executed ad-lib. Most of it having something to do with Kazumin, who played Porin this time around.
During the initial scene, when Maiyan entered as Elza, Sayu (who played Catherine) began doing hafu~n (Maiyan's boob-rubbing thing) to which Maiyan told her "stop playing around," only to suggest they should all do it together. So basically all of a sudden there's Maiyan, Kazumin and Sayu all standing there on stage rubbing their boobs.
Later on when Bell's (Yumi) mathematical skills are being questioned, someone in the crowd is shouting out the answers. This leads Sayu to step forward and say "You're here today as well?!"
Minami came in as Elizabeth doing her trademark waving with both hands, which led the trio to stand there doing it as well during her entire introduction. She also did her famous "Wakanna~i" after Porin's "Wakannai" line.
Nanamin had a hard time holding back her laughter during her initial scene. Marika and Ikoma, instead of doing their actual routines, did a matching dance. Actually, every scene they appeared in together they kept doing weird stuff.
The gas station scene was absolutely amazing, Maiyan entering as the chief attendant doing an all-out Kazumin impersonation. All the other girls who play gas station attends also do Kazumin impersonations, later exiting the stage shouting "Amajiingu!"
Once Ikuchan as Estelle enters the stage, the role Pam usually has a line stating she has a fighting allergy. However, Naachan in this case claims she's turning weak because of her Takayama allergy. Kazumin then apologizes.
During the praising scene, Naachan says she's jealous of how Ikuchan's mouth moves so much when she speaks, unlike her own.
During the castle gate scene, there were even more Kazumin references. Minami, who played one of the laughing handmaidens, for example said "Ugly! -Amajiingu!- Ugly!"
Ikuchan, playing the guardian spirit, turned around and did Pojipeace as she exited the stage.
After defeating Luida, Sayurin came out from the gate thanking Porin for saving her "huge-breasted mother." This was also the only line Sayurin basically remembered (and she even ad-libbed it) so Ami who stood next to her, had to whisper every single line from that point on to her (there's about seven ones in succession).
Once the handmaidens arrived to launch their final attack, they all shouted "Amajiingu" and alternated between doing that pose, and Pojipeace. Kazumin's final line also ended up being "Ugh, why is everyone Takayama today."
During the following MC in the middle of the mini-live, Kazumin mentioned that she's very bad at following up ad-libbing, so she felt rather troubled, but was happy it turned out well in the end. She also apologized for the amount of Takayama.
Something worth point out about this show is that Sayu's acting, as well as ad-lib ability is amazing. She was the star of this run. Maiyan makes a close second, for being incredibly funny.
6/12 - Nogizaka Act MOVIE
MCs this time were Minami, Nanamin and Ikuchan, with Minami being lead MC, though Ikuchan was busy with a piano lesson during the first corner, so she didn't appear until the second one.
Minami hadn't really remembered the script so she did the parts she did remember, then went away from it. For the actual scripted parts, her tone went up at the end as she was still kinda unsure. She was really giggly and Nanamin explained that it's the first time she's ever given the responsibility of lead MC. When discussing what to expect from the movie they're showing, both said they really don't want to see it.
The first part plays out the same, and most girls didn't even change their PR.
- Ikuchan did the same solo musical as previously
- Noujou did three impersonations: a rabbit, an angry dog as well as a dinosaur. She also followed this up by showing off some serious acting, as well as telling people she does have experience doing Alice in Wonderland - playing a tree.
- Yumi did an acting marathon, playing four different characters in succession.
- Nanamin just did a short talk about how her dream was to become an anime character designer, but that she's starting to realize that she's actually horrible at drawing characters.
- Minami started crying since this was the final day, and she has yet to appear yet, She also did something very uncharacteristic - scream that she really wants to appear (while her nose was running).
During the second MC, Ikuchan arrives with the other two girls, apologising for arriving late, explaining that she was busy playing piano. She said she got to see all the self-PR sessions though, so she's able to follow up with the discussion.
Minami begins mentioning how she thinks her hair at the time was disgusting, and can't understand how she had it like that (the old antenna a hair). Nanamin and Ikuchan tell her she was cute, but she disagrees. Nanamin thinks her self at the time was kinda gross, especially in terms of fashion (they all wore their personal clothing). Both Nanamin and Minami say Ikuchan is probably the one who's changed the least, but Ikuchan disagrees saying she was way too weird back then, and it was uncomfortable watching her own self-PR.
Minami asking the other two what left the greatest impression watching this old footage, Ikuchan mentioned that Noujou hasn't really changed at all, which the others agree with, and they are all puzzled about what's going on in that girl's head.
Nanamin, instead of answering, asks Minami the same question, but since she's the lead MC she thought she wouldn't have to answer these questions, and begs Nanamin to help her. She later mentions that everyone looked really young.
Returning to Nanamin, she mentioned that it was nice to see all the graduates like Mikumo and Secchan, but wonders where Yukina is, because as far as she remembers she didn't graduate until long after this happened. Minami and Ikuchan then mentions that she didn't participate in this, and Nanamin begins chuckling about how Yukina always skipped out on the big things, and the three of them began shouting her name.
The second part of the movie plays out in the same fashion, the only difference being the elected cast.
As the final MC begins, Minami asks the audience what they thought, resulting in an applause. Nanamin comments that she can't really tell if this means people enjoyed it, or if they're just applauding because Minami talked, because every time up until now people did so.
Discussing their impressions, Ikuchan mentions that Nanamin's "In your position" in the Beginner (crappy AKB song) performance was so void of emotion it amazed her, and she's actually remembered it up until this day.
They later move on to talk about Principal, with Minami mentioning she's currently aiming for Luida, but has been unable to do that for now. She does however mention her incredibly high amount of ensemble roles, thinking it's pretty amazing. Ikuchan says she's already done all the 10 roles, and asks for the fans cooperation helping her try an ensemble role for once. Nanamin says since she joined in so late, she's mostly gonna stick to roles she's comfortable with until the end, instead of trying do a 10 role clear.
Nanamin thinks that since it's rare for most fans to see Minami in this position, they should ask her questions, but Minami thinks it's a bad idea and that they should ask Nanamin and Ikuchan instead. Regardless - a fan asks Minami how she feels about Ikomachan, and she replies that she can't talk about serious things like that here. (In case you're unaware, they're recently getting more and more of an OTP status, Nanase being a big fan among others.)
As they're about to close it up, Nanamin gives Minami the honor, but she doesn't know how to do it so she begs Nanamin to help her out. Nanamin however convinces her saying she's MC today so it's up to her.
To quote her, she finishes it up saying "The final movie showing..... ends now," and then making a final remark that "MC is really fun" which cracks Nanamin up.
So that's about it, ended up writing a lot again.
Always remember that Sayu is fab and Minami is fabbest.
Edit: Added a part about Nanami mentioning the graduates during the fourth event.
^ Thank you so much for writing all those awesome experiences in great detail! Darn, I hope I'll be able to get to Japan and watch it too next time.
Sayurin sounds like she'd be a great actress or play actor. Sony get on that!!
^ You're welcome, I'm happy you appreciated it!
I can definitely recommend it. I mean, initially I only planned on going once, but it was so much more entertaining than I originally imagined it being. Although there'll be a new theme next time, people who've went every year told me the trend so far is it gets better and better.
^ Not to ruin any dreams, but Sayurin is actually one of the... worse actresses in the group.
She is incredibly funny and quick-witted, and as such, the first half of the Principal show series was like made for her this time around. When it comes to scripts she's sort of hopeless though.
I attended the 5/18 handshake in Port Nagoya Messe as well. Mostly writing these based on the very vague recollections I have now. After a long and exhausting two shot day I woke up to miss my Shinkansen ride, had to get on the next train as a result. I arrived just a bit after slot 1 has started. Atmosphere was small and manageable compared to Yokohama Pacifico. Because this was my first time meeting them (plus the exhaustion from the previous day) I pretty much set up a general "Hi I come from U.S., [something unique about them], give me a wink" type of convo and went from there
Slot 1 - First handshake was with Ito Marika. Obviously told her that I loved her personal PVs, especially the one in Barretta. She seemed glad and smiled. Then I asked her if we are going to see more of those. She said she doesn't know (I guess at this point they haven't started working on it yet?) but told me to look forward to her future stuff. I nod my head and that's the end.
Second was Yonetoku Kyoka. I think she's my current favorite out of all the 2nd gens not in senbatsu. She had a pretty cute white outfit on that day. I was originally say something about swimming but somehow mind went blank after seeing her and I was just like "oh you look cute today....". In the end I told her I want to see her appearing in the 10th single senbatsu, and she replied she'll do her best. As I was about to leave she complimented my "fluent" Japanese and I was like lol ok.
After that went to line up for Akimoto Manatsu. As everyone probably knows she is seriously a deadly fisher. I saw many getting zukkyun'd infront of me so I thought yea why not do the same. Right before my turn, the guy in front of me asked her to punch him and she did to his cheeks (lightly). I thought hmmm I want something like that too! So when it came to my turn I told her that I want to be fished and pointed to my face. I think she was having a little trouble reaching me (I didn't realize this then lol) so she extended her range by zukkyuning my face with her fingers instead. Thus the magical moment happened xD. As I was getting shoved out I quickly asked for a wink and Akimana got me double fished with just one ticket. Well worth the price of admission and definitely going back to her again next time.
Slot 2 - I forgot who I lined up for first but I think it was Ikuchan. Right after the first break I went and talked with some of her birthday committee members and told them about the project we were doing, then I wrote a message myself as well. Iku was in a cute stripped dress that day. When I told her I'm from US she asked me where and I said New York, then she went ohhhhhh (she came here for the HTC commercial ). I told her that she has a lot of fans overseas (well, on my tweeterlist neways) and that some of us would quit nogi fandom if she quit too. She let out a lol and went wow. Just because it seemed like the right thing to do, I told her (like everyone else probably) to do her best on her entrance exam and she said ganbarimasu. As I exited I obviously asked for a wink again and was K.O'd!
Next up went for Ikoma's lane. I think I lined up with leftie for this one. Ikoma is what you call very homely I guess. In the new team B pv ikoma was obviously replaced by some dude with the face mask and I was trying to tell her that she looked good like that. It was only later that I found out that later in the PV she appears as well so I don't think she got my meaning at all xD. As I was leaving I asked for wink and she seemed reluctant to do it the first time but I asked her a second time and she did!
After slot 2 it came time for Nishino Nanase's bday party! Basically a bunch of members walk out and there are some letter readings and then photos get taken. Don't really remember the details since I didn't care too much lol.
Slot 3 - I lined for Maiyan early since her line was the longest of the bunch. When I entered the booth I was absolutely stunned and went like O:O:O:O:O She is as pretty as you see her on TV and truly a goddess! I told her I'm from the U.S to start (not too much reaction, prob thought I was BSing). And then I told her I like her back (seriously, those photos with her back are killers) and she smiled and said she's happy. I told her all of us oversea nogi fans love her and call her goddess and she was even more happy! At the end as I was being let out I asked for wink again and it was probably the best one that day that straight killed me. Needed a break after this ;O
After recollecting myself I went to Miona's lane. She was wearing a dress while sitting down but I forgot how the conversation went lol. I guess that means she didn't really stand out too much, but she was still cute nonetheless. Later that day she went Ghibli mode though and I honestly would've wanted to see that.
After the third slot it was time for Reika's birthday party! I think more came out for Reika than Nanase. Basically Wakasama read a letter detailing their love for each other, and then Reika herself said words of continuing to do her best in the future blahblah standard words you hear everyday. Me and leftie just happened to stand in the front of the middle center and shall we say, had a great view during the whole thing lol.
Slot 4 - I lined for Sayuringo first. She was wearing a pink blouse with form fitting skirt that day but was sitting down. Although she may appear a bit chubby on tv the truth is she's not at all. Again, don't remember what we talked about (generic?) But ofc I had to ask her to give me the sayuringo punch at the end. Turns out it's not very effective and more for show only! I felt it couldn't turned out better if I had something specific for her...
Finally lined up for Reika with her 2 tickets. Her lane was decorated with VIP flower entrance and a long list of everything she appeared in since joining nogizaka on the floor. Right when I entered I immediately noticed how small she was, never got that feeling watching her on tv. I told her I'm from New York ("ah sugoiii" like everyone else!) and then that she is my oshimen. Her eyes lite up and asked me why. I said I like her voice and dancing and most importantly her LOOKS! I told her that a lot of my friends are her fans too and to remember that she has overseas fans. Lastly, since I'm starting school again soon, I told her to give me a support message and ofc she told me to do my best. Hearing those words were enough, as they are now imprinted in my mind. Whatever hardships that come from the next two years, I'll think back to those words again xD. She held on my hand even when I was out of the booth and put her hand and head outside the booth until the last possible moment. It was the super reaction I was looking for and made me not regret picking her as oshimen. What I did regret was 1. forgetting to tell her happy bday IN PERSON 2. ask for wink. But boy that was enough for me in 20 seconds xD.
After slot 4 there was another celebration but I forgot who and just sat outside the hall and chillaxed with leftie.
Slot 5 - First up in the last slot was Maimai. You can see that she is genuinely nice and deserves her holy mother status. She grabs your hands though and wave them left and right, which made for an interesting...experience. I told her I love her current hairstyle and that she should always keep it that way. She seem flustered and then started caressing her hair asking "you think so?". Then I was pushed out because it was the last block and everyone trying to go home I guess! No time to request for wink at all orz.
And finally I had Nanamin to end the day. On her line there was a staff telling about how she's not feeling well so don't be disappointed by her being a zombie or something lol. For Nanamin I asked her what she thought about New York (obviously she went there for the HTC commercial as well), but it seemed like she didn't know that I knew she already came here. So she slowly said "Well I have only been there once, it was short but I had an amazing time there". Then as staff was pushing me out I told her to definitely come again. It was shorter than usual I guess because it was last slot and she was a little sick. The wink was out of the question since she wasn't in the condition to do so lol.
In conclusion, the handshake event was a nice and relaxing way to interact with your favorite members. It was good to see my favorites once and see how they are really like in person. Some have rooted in their rankings, while others slipped a bit. But I definitely know what I was getting into with each of them, so I wasn't disappointed by them at all. Next time I think I'm going to focus on my favorite ones by buying more of those, so I can have a real mini-convo with them instead of preconceived 1 liners.
I attended the handshake yesterday (yesterday was the first handshake of 48G/46 since the Ricchan/Annin incident)
In the entrance before you can enter the handshake event, there are guards that will check your bag. They also have metal detectors and will also do a full body check. If you have drinks with you, they will ask you to drink a small amount (I think they are testing that it's not acid/poison lol)
After the inspection at the entrance, it was pretty much pretty the same except for the members' booth. There wasn't too much hassle inside the lane of the members IMHO. A staff will take your baggage and will place it in a basket before you can handshake a member, then he will hand it to you after you leave the booth. Each member also has their own body guard on their side.
The only thing that I will complain about is that with the new position of the booth, it just felt that members were much farther from you. Ikuchan's voice is already soft plus the distance, I couldn't understand what she was replying to me. I needed a few more handshakes to adjust