Thursday, 26 September 2013

The Issue With Berryz

All opinions within this post, and on this blog in general, are my own and no one else's. I know that my opinion is not favoured by most people, but it is my opinion and this is my blog, so please respect it, and I will in return respect yours. Thank you.


For a while now, I have wanted to write a post on Berryz Kobou and my feelings towards the group; You do not have to agree with what I say, you do not have to even read what I put, but if you do, just tolerate what I am writing. This will not be a favourable post with many people, but that is life, and honestly, I am not here to write what everyone else wants me to write, and that is that.

Let's get into the post, shall we?


I think that it is pretty safe to say that I am not the biggest fan of Berryz Kobou, and honestly, I make it very obvious that I don't care about them. Whether it is in my Digests or other posts, I make it aware that this group is so low on my list when it comes to most idol groups, and that I really can't be bothered to follow them sometimes. In fact, the only reason why I seem to tolerate the group right now is because they are in Hello! Project. That, and I have been waiting for a while now for this group and management to get their act together and produce something great, and to possibly look like a group again.

It's not that I don't like songs by Berryz Kobou or the girls themselves, because I do. Individually, the girls are wonderful. I have a particular fondness for Chinami and Yurina as we all know, and I have recently started to enjoy Maasa and appreciate how beautiful she is. Risako has also started to appeal to me more once again as of late, which is... weird. Concerning the singles that the group has released, I think that there are a few stand-out A-sides that have been released, but as a whole, I find that the group is an utter and complete mess right now.

Actually, the group has been a mess for a while now, probably around the time Heroine ni Narou Ka! came out. For some reason, after all their Anime songs were finished and the group were once again being given music that wouldn't be promoted alongside an animation, the group seemed to go downhill for a while. The strange thing is, it wasn't the music that was going downhill, but the group itself. It seemed like the girls no longer connected with each other, as if they had all grown up suddenly and became bored with their group mates. Watching the PV's as of late, it has become painfully obvious to me that all of the girls have gone in different directions, and don't seem to care about Berryz Kobou any more. Heck, the only one who does seem to care about the group is Shimizu Saki, and possibly Kumai Yurina, but that's it. The rest of them are clearly bored and done with the group.


I mean, looking at the group now, it just looks like a bunch of girls have been shoved together and told to perform and look pretty, and it's very awkward watching them sometimes... especially when they are told to perform a song that is 'sexy' and 'mature'. Most of the time, the girls look bored and uninterested in what they are doing, and other times, it's horrible to watch them as they try and pull off a more mature and sexual look to appeal to the fans watching the videos. It's not just their images that don't fit with the theme they are going for, but also their emotional impact towards the song. There is no emotional impact if you ask me, and I don't think that the members being so disconnected from each other helps, either.

Also, I think that their images don't help them much either. Especially Tsugunaga Momoko.


I think we know how I feel towards this girl by now, especially her character 'Momochi'. Now, I don't hate Momoko. In fact, she is a very good singer, one of the best in Berryz if you ask me, and she is very smart to take on such an annoying persona and make it popular, and also to be able to suffer through the torment she goes through from comedians and hosts. The thing is, it is very obvious that she does not suit Berryz Kobou... or at least, not now. Maybe a few years ago, back when they looked good together and were still young and genki, this persona would have still fit, but right now when the group is trying to promote a more mature and sexual Berryz Kobou, she sticks out like a sore thumb. Tsugunaga Momoko looks like a kid among women, to put it bluntly, and most of the time she ruins the serious nature or the mature tone of a PV with how she looks and acts, which isn't her fault, because you can't help how you look, but for me she ruins a PV because of what she is wearing or how she is acting in the video. Her voice fits the songs sometimes, (not all the time) but when it comes to her image, she really does spoil the mood of a video and makes it awkward to watch.

To be completely honest with you, Momoko is probably the only reason why Berryz is still around right now. She's the only one who has real popularity outside of the group, kind of like Sayumi when Morning Musume was still in its rut because promotion sucked and the group were boring and running dry, and Momoko is doing very well for herself I believe. I honestly think that Momoko, as she is now, should be given a solo career within Hello! Project. She's the only one in Berryz who has the talent and image to do it if you ask me. She also has the drive to promote herself which helps, so she should really just quit the group and become a soloist. That would honestly be the best thing for her, and I would possibly pay more attention to her if she did that, too, but as a member of this group... well, she annoys me, and she looks like she should be in S/mileage, not Berryz.


Other than Momoko though, the rest of the Berryz members don't seem to know where they want to go, whether it is in the PV or outside of the group. They don't mesh well together, and most of what they do looks awkward and forced. There is no group chemistry there at all, and whilst their songs sound pretty good (I swear, Motto Zutto is pretty much perfect for a Berryz song) the group itself is just one giant hot mess, and I don't see why Tsunku or UFP want to continue promoting them when the only thing that I (and others) can give them credit for is Momoko's great promotion of herself and Berryz, and some of their music. The group is on a very thin thread right now, one that is breaking ever so slowly, and I think that the promotion they are getting now is only there to try and salvage Berryz to see if they are still worth keeping together as a group, and not as individual members or singers.

In my opinion, I think that Berryz going to Budokan will probably be the deciding factor for whether or not UFP will keep them; I mean, I think the girls will have a good amount of fans come to see them, but I doubt they will sell out like C-ute did and gain a day two at Budokan. They aren't like C-ute, who undeniably came together so well after the graduation of Erika and proved to be a force in Hello! Project, and Berryz don't have that saving factor that Morning Musume and S/mileage have where they can add new members to revive the group - they are just one group with one set amount of girls, and it just so happens that those girls grew up and possibly lost interest in being idols, or lost interest in each other. It's sad, but it's true.

Unless Berryz comes together as a group again, one that meshes well together and where the other members genuinely like each other, I think that they should disband. Currently, they are in the spot Morning Musume were in a few years ago before the mass graduations and auditions happened, but like I said before, Berryz don't have auditions, but graduations are still an option, too; if the group happened to lose a member, possibly a lead vocalist, I think that it would refresh the group and probably be a good thing, but after being together for so long without any change in lead vocalists or line-up, it might also jeopardize the group. Who knows? Either way, Berryz is in need of a change, (and not a musical one) or they need to disband, and honestly, I don't even think that one member leaving will do much to save how the group works together, though it could possibly help their image a little.

I don't hate Berryz, I like their music enough to continue caring about them a little (being in Hello! Project also helps) but I think that they are past their sell by date... they need a wake up call, or they need to disband, and honestly, the latter would be the most preferable choice for me, because Berryz have truly become boring.

So, to summarise: Disband Berryz, make Momoko a soloist, and also, revive Buono! That's the logical step in my opinion, because damn, at least Momoko and Buono! would make money and be promoted for their talent and group chemistry.

... And that is all I have to say on this matter.

Chiima~

PING!!! Recommended Jpop♀ Reading: September 2013, Part Two

28 comments:

  1. I've been waiting for an opinion on the topic of Berryz and I must say I agree with you. Heroine ni narou ka was my favorite berryz song but nothing compares to anything after that.They should disband before they completely wreck their image.

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    1. Thank you :3 I really liked Heroine ni Narou Ka, more than I thought I would, so I was disappointed that the releases after that were stale and horrible. Both PV and song were amazing, so it was shocking to know that everything after was worse or not as good. And as you say, they do need to disband before their image is ruined more.

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  2. AGREE!!
    well i don't hate them but yeahhh...

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    1. I don't hate them either, I just don't like them... XD

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  3. Berryz is really frustrating me right now. They were actually on a good streak from cha cha SING to Asian Celebration and then when their double A-side came out it's like they just died. The fact that they've released 9 albums amazes me, and I do think it's time for them to wrap it up, because right now the only members that are interesting me are Risako and Miyabi, and sometimes Yurina and Saki. Maasa and Chinami used to be cool but they just look bored now, like they're not even trying and don't care; and that's a serious problem when you consider the low level of musical talent they actually have. Even Momoko, who is one of my favorites of all time thanks to Buono!, is just sticking out too much and really needs to let the Momochi character go and just be herself sometimes.

    I WANT BUONO! BACK!!!!!!!!
    And I don't mean the cheap stuff they released on SHERBET, I mean the REAL Buono!, from their first three albums which had the greatest songs EVERRRR. And their epic concerts and their live band and everything.

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    1. I think Berryz is frustrating everyone, especially those who have such hope for them. I mean, hell, I was VERY hopeful for them with Cha Cha SING, I loved it so much! But they wasted that hope from me by creating Asian Celebration and then... well, they came out with stuff like Golden Chinatown...

      9 albums is pretty amazing, I agree, but they all seem tired of the group. I think Saki is possibly frustrated with how much effort she puts into the group, and they barely ever see results that other groups are getting. I think Maasa and Chii are tired of no recognition for the years they've put in; they aren't musically talented, no, but neither is Risako or even Yurina, and they get more recognition.

      BUONO COMING BACK WOULD BE GOOD ;W;

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  4. Oh so agreed. Momoko is my baby and I think she's totally wasting her time with Berryz. UFA is doing a bloody awful job promoting them, none of their recent songs are any good, the PV's are cheap af, and the girls seem so bored :| Along with RIP Risako's voice thanks to UFA. Totally agreed they should disband and bring back Buono, I don't think BK is really bringing in any profit anyway...
    -Lily

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    1. THIS! 100% agreement here

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    2. I agree with this as well! Out of all the groups, BK is probably the lowest selling. Hell... even Juice=Juice outsold ALL of their first weeks single sales with their major debut!!! That kinda speaks volumes!

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  5. I have to sadly agree, I love Berryz and they have had a very enjoyable career and their music has been good. I still like their songs now, apart from Golden Chinatown which took a long time for me to like. I do feel that the member now they don't have much time left in Berryz Kobou. Even when they were given their Budokan dates they didn't look too excited. They are talented girls, I just think they've lost the passion and management just don't have time for them as much as they have with Morning Musume and C-ute now sadly.

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    1. I still like their songs, in fact they have some fantastic tracks I truly underappreciate because I prefer other groups, but the members seem to have outgrown Berryz. I wouldn't mind if they were individual tarento's in UFP, but I would like them to be managed well... as in, better than Aika is being managed...

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  6. Omg I was waiting for you to make a post like this. I like berryz but the same people sing in every song which makes them so boring to watch. Theres no chemistry with them. If you compared their actions in Loving you so much with the way Cute acted in Ham and cheese bagel its a completely different environment. A prominent member graduating would shake things up and give them a wake up call but if they act as individuals instead of one unit nothing is going to change

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    1. I don't think you know how happy I was to see the comment 'I was waiting for a post like this' ;w; it makes me happy... like, seriously happy! And yes, as you say, the same people sing in every song. Okay, the other groups are kinda like that, but they actually juggle the distribution a bit better... especially C-ute. And I love the comparison of Ham to Cheese and Loving You Too Much! There is certainly lacking chemistry in Berryz (awesome song though) and amazing chemistry in Ham to Cheese!

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  7. I agreeeee! I believe if they would go back to making songs like cha cha sing, they would be able hold on to their limelight a little longer. But they are trying to go the sexy route and it ain't working. I hope they do themselves a favor and start looking into different career options soon, it really looks like their tenure as idols is coming to a screeching hault.

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    1. To add one more thing, I remember yurina saying she wanted to model and maasa stating that she would like to be a seiyuu . Momoko already has another career going. I hope the other girls have something waiting for them too. Once they graduate, I would still like to see them in the entertainment industry like ai chan and Mano.

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    2. I think genki songs, which aren't too childish, are perfect for Berryz. Cha Cha SING was certainly great, and got them recognised really well! I think, sadly, they are only going the sexy route because Risako refuses to stop trying too hard to make herself look that way, and it only ends up failing because everyone else looks awkward and out of place.

      Also, it would be nice to see Yurina go into modelling, and even better to see Maasa pursue something she likes, and where she won't be hidden by other Idols! I think some would go into acting, but not all... Momochi probably could stick to being a tarento.

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  8. I am split on this.. One half of me wishes Berryz will last forever and the other half is frustrated with the current berryz and wants them to graduate.. =\ i like berryz but they need to step up their game soon...

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    1. I can't say I agree with you for wanting Berryz to stay together forever, but I understand the feeling. But yeah, in order to stay together, they really need to up their game and change themselves as a group. They need to get their act together...

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  9. I know some guys, real dead-eyed mofos, ain't afraid to get their hands dirty you want these Berryz broads gone. Like really gone. Finished. Finito. Kaput. Just say the word 'n' they're worm food.

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    1. OMFG SONDA XD XD XD XD YES!!!!!!! Omfg you make my day <3 XD

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  10. I agree with this. It's time for berryz to say good bye. No need to hold on any longer. They are still young. If they want to try new things, they better start now.

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    1. Thank you for agreeing. I think Berryz are just tired now, and it is really time for them to move on. As you say, they are still young, and now is a better time than ever to leave and pursue other careers.

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  11. FINALLY! Someone who shares my opinion! Berryz was the group that brought me into the jpop/idol fandom all the way back in 2008 (I was only nine at the time! omg) Koi no Jubaku was the first video I saw and Dakishimete Dakishimete and Seishun Bus Guide/Rival really hooked me on Berryz. But really, I agree. It's time for the group to end. Honestly, Heroine ni narou ka was the last strong single they've had. It really pains me to say this considering I used to be such a HUGE berryz fan, but I just want them all to leave. They've lost that "idol glue" that holds a Hello! Project act together, and everything they release lately is really unconnected. Its sad because they never had the "peak" that C-ute seem to be having now.

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    1. YAY! >3< It seems that I have been sharing the same opinion with everyone, and honestly, that surprises me! Usually my Berryz opinion is not favoured! And, I am sad that this pains you, because it does hurt when you see a group you love, and they are not doing as well as they could be, thanks to management. If they are going through this now, and if they don't disband, I do hope that they figure it out and become a strong act again... like MoMusu.

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  12. OMG so im not only one isn't of this? Actually berryz koubou bring me to love the whole H!P. I first heard Special Generation in 2006 and i fall in love with Berryz. I always look forward to their new single from then but now I really lost interest in them and C-ute is becoming more of my fav here. i mean c-ute is really great with 5 member i do miss the older member but they work great as they're now compare to before. I mean the girl been working together for long time. Berryz never change it's ALWAYS Miyabi and risako the main vocal sometimes Momoko and yurina, and other lucky have one solo line in one song. Yes it's sad to see them go but it's even more sad seeing them being like this. I would love to see them doing something else that they would be more happy with.

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    1. Nope, it seems a lot of this have been thinking this for a while now! And to be honest, I liked Berryz before I liked Morning Musume properly, so they were one the starts of my love for H!P. I like their songs, but their group look is not good right now... hopefully, it gets better ;w; But yes, it would be nice to change the main vocals, maybe a ChiiMaasa lead. That would be different, but maybe a fresh start.

      But, as you say, it would be good to see them do something they would be happier with.

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  13. Okay, I've got to say that you're right about their image when they tried to be sexy: it just didn't worked for them and made them look awkward and sucked out all the charm the girls had and that those "sexy" singles were the worst singles they ever had... But saying that they show no chemistry in Loving You Too Much? Sorry but Cha Cha SING and Loving You Too Much were probably the last music videos where you can see their chemistry, you can almost taste it. After Cha Cha SING/Loving You Too Much, only Romance Wo Katatte and Towa No Uta were videos where you enjoyed seeing the girls together, as a group again.

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    1. I really did not see the chemistry, though, that's the thing. I know other people did, but when I watched it, I just saw a bunch of girls shoved together. I definitely saw it in Cha Cha SING, yes, but... I've never said anything about Loving You Too Much here. In fact, I probably forgot that song had a video at that point, but it is a good song.

      I really didn't see chemistry in anything much after that, especially not that final PV they released. How we see groups is subjective to each viewer, but for me, their chemistry went down the drain after Cha Cha SING.

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