Top Ten Idols – 2013

Well, whenever I go back and look at my top ten idols list, it always seems like things change a lot. I know things have since I started Happy Disco (my original list was all Hello!Project, wow). This list is always pretty difficult to make, because as an idol enthusiast I have a lot of favorites. Even if someone slipped down my list at all or is omitted, that only really means that I have another idol I like better, not that I like them less.

10. Tamura Meimi (S/Mileage)

S/Mileage’s second generation are four of my top five members in current Hello!Project. While I like Kanyon and Ayacho, if S/Mileage’s second generation formed an idol group on their own I think it would be one of my favorite idol groups ever. I think they all have a lot of strengths, are a lot of fun, and are super adorable. Picking one as my favorite is hard; however, it ends up as being Meimei. She’s just so energetic and excited, that Meimi was actually the one to open me up to Hello!Project after being a bit cynical regarding them for a while; Meimi felt and still feels fresh. I love her energy, her enthusiasm, and just how mischievous and fun she is. One of my favorite things was when she basically trolled everyone by setting up a blog entry sounding like she was graduating… only revealing she was graduating from using “-chan” to refer to her friends. Meimi not only loves her fans, she trolls them. She’s cute, energetic, fun to watch, and just a weirdo.

9. Ishida Ayumi – Morning Musume

For most of 2012 Meimei was my favorite in Hello!Project, so putting Ishida Ayumi over Meimi is a pretty big change. Ever since Morning Musume’s 10th generation has debuted, I’ve been fond of Ishida Ayumi, and she’s been my favorite Morning Musume member for a while. However, since I don’t really follow much of Morning Musume, it didn’t really click with Ayumi as a favorite member until recently, and even then it was a slow build. I first became really impressed with her when the dance shot to One Two Three came out, since Ayumi’s performing strength is in her dancing. Slowly I began to find out more about her personality, and found out that while she’s a sweet person she’s almost a closet wota/creeper  of her fellow members. In one blog post in particular she took pictures of all of her fellow 10th generation members sleeping and posted them on her blog, saying how cute they all are. She’s a hard worker, a strong performer, and has a really sweet personality. She’s making me follow Morning Musume, which is what qualifies her as one of my top idols. Honestly, if I followed Morning Musume more closely than some of the other groups, Ayumi could move up my list because I like her that much.

8. Watanabe Miyuki (NMB48/AKB48)

Putting Milky this low is ridiculous for me. Honestly, this is a tough spot. Once you get past the two Hello!Project girls (who I really love, but aren’t my favorites), my top 8 is really where I have strong feelings. My top 3 48 girls shift around places a lot, so one day Milky might be my #1 girl in AKB and one day she might be my #3, like today. Normally, within AKB48, I tend to go for the lesser popular girls (though the one girl who just barely missed this list is Kashiwagi Yuki, AKA #3 in AKB48), but I’ve been a Milky fan since the early days of NMB48. I can wax poetic about how perfect I find Milky (and have, on my tumblr HERE) but basically she’s a natural idol who loves idols. She has tons of charisma, has been able to endure a scandal and come out on top, and ultimately really loves what she does and being an idol. She’s also really funny and strange (I adore the whole “chapu chapu’ movement), and is a fan of Ishikawa Rika, which does help. She’s one idol who’s a natural, and it’s definitely appealing Plus her photobook, Mirugami, was my favorite of 2012 and possibly one of my favorites ever

7. Oota Aika (HKT48)

Lovetan is a very adaptable member, which is probably her biggest strength. She went from being one of the cute younger members of Team B to being one of the middle-range Team A girls (as well as center of the Undergirls for a while). She started off young and as one of the cuter members of AKB48, but she’s been able to adapt to more mature things as she’s gotten older (look how cool she looks in that outfit from Show Fight!). And finally, she’s moved to HKT48, where she’s now the most experienced member. The thing I’ve always liked about Lovetan is just how natural she is, and how honest she really seems. Perhaps that’s her “tsundere” personality, but she doesn’t shy away from showing her emotions or expressing them. She’s a real sweetheart who I always love watching. I was really disappointed to see her huge drop in the AKB48 election (though not in her; she’s been doing great), so I’m hoping that she can shine in HKT48 through the future. I honestly think this is a good move, and I can’t wait to hear more from Lovetan! Seeing her growth as an idol from Team B to today has been a privilege, and I’m proud to be a Lovetan fan.

6. Natori Wakana (AKB48) 

Wakanyan’s not an easy idol to have as my AKB48 oshimen. She only recently was promoted to Team B, and before that was a kenkyuusei that missed the whole Team 4 thing. Despite that, Wakanyan is really fantastic. I initially became a fan of hers because of her performance skills; she was Kashiwagi Yuki’s under and performed as Yukirin in kenkyuusei shows, which shows that AKB trusted her to do a lot. She was also the first person of her generation to perform the solo kenkyuusei song “Romance Kakurenbo,” and has proven herself both an excellent singer and an excellent performer. However, aside from this I just love her personality. She’s worked so hard since her debut as a kenkyuusei, and on the 11th generation special of Ariyoshi AKB Kyowakoku she won my heart by being brave enough to not only pick up one snake (in a test where they had to put snakes back in their containers, to “test bravery) that bit her, but going back again. She also seems to have a good personality whenever I see LODs or look at G+.

5. Mizuno Yui (BABYMETAL/Sakura Gakuin)

Look at that face and tell me she isn’t the cutest thing you’ve ever seen. In all seriousness, I love watching Yui’s enthusiasm when performing and in PVs, both in standard idol group Sakura Gakuin and heavy metal unit Babymetal. While I adore every member of Babymetal and I enjoy both Suzuka and Moa a lot as idols, something about Yui sticks out to me. Probably how happy she looks singing metal music. If anyone can have a huge grin on her face while performing metal, it’s Yui. But she has a level of happiness and enthusiasm that I just love in an idol, and has the cutest smile ever.

4. Aso Natsuko (soloist)







If you missed it, yes that is me and Nacchan at the Hyper Japan event this February in London. 🙂 (read my post about that HERE) Putting Nacchan this low really sucks, and I think is a real testament to how strongly I feel about other idols. However, seeing Aso Natsuko live was amazing; she has such crazy charisma and energy. It was an incredible experience I hope to experience again. She’s a real sweetheart and a great performer, and an all-around great idol. It takes a lot of charisma to be a successful solo artist, and Nacchan definitely qualifies.

3. Sasaki Ayaka (Momoiro Clover Z)

A~rin is in the “natural idol” category. Seriously, if there are any girls who are born idols, A~rin is one of them. Every time I see her performing, I can tell that she’s obviously loving what she does and that she’s having a great time with what she’s doing. I personally also love her performance; while she may not have the best voice or dancing, what she is good at hamming it up during her solos and giving a good performance. I also have a strong affection for cute idols and idols that have an “idol-like” personality (and she is referred to as MomoClo’s idol in her introduction). While all the MomoClo members are good in their own way and I’m fond of all of them (especially Reni, who’s really weird), I’d argue that A~rin’s the most fun and playful member. Not to say that she doesn’t take her job seriously, but she has just a fun personality that shines, on and off stage.

2. Ishikawa Rika (ex-Morning Musume/v-u-den)

She’s topped every single list I’ve ever had until now. This might be a surprise to you if you know me, and it surprised me when I realized it. However, I think this is mostly a result of not being very active any more (I’d tentatively still call Rika my all-time favorite, as this list is primarily current). Simply put, Rika is one of the most driven idols ever, a hard worker, a role model for younger members, and is one of the strongest performers (not vocally, but on pure strength of dance/performance skills). Rika, is in my opinion, the gold standard for idols everywhere; there’s a reason that two of the top idols in the 48 empire, Watanabe Miyuki and Kashiwagi Yuki are huge Rika fans. She has a great personality, great performances, and I’m proud to be a Rika fan, which has not wavered at all since I became a Rika fan. That being said, when deciding this I couldn’t ignore the sheer power of my #1…

1. Ooguro Yuzuki (Team Syachihoko)

Yuzuki is the first idol to surpass Rika since Rika became my favorite near the end of 2008/beginning of 2009. Which, as a big idol fan, says a good deal. I initially pegged Yuzuki as being my least favorite of Team Syachihoko, because she didn’t initially stand out to me in my initial viewing of The Stardust Bowling’s PV. However, despite this, when I first watched a live performance, I saw how strong Yuzuki really is. The thing about Yuzuki is that, even though she’s probably in the middle of the group in terms of skill, you can tell she’s clearly giving a huge effort every time she performs. She has a ton of enthusiasm, and every performance you can see how hard she works and how much she enjoys herself. She is a sweetheart, clearly loves being in Team Syachihoko, and is the most fun idol to watch right now.

Honorable mentions: Kashiwagi Yuki (AKB48), Iwasa Misaki (AKB48), Matsui Sakiko (AKB48), Miyawaki Sakura (HKT48), Yajima Maimi (C-ute), S/Mileage’s 2nd generation, all the other members of Team Syachihoko and Momoiro Clover Z, Kyao (MMJ),

30 Day Idol Challenge Day 20

Day 20: An Idol you admire.

With this challenge, I initially really wanted to highlight different idols that I like a lot. However, this question has one really big answer with me, and that’s my #1 favorite idol, Ishikawa Rika.

I’ll be the first one to tell you that I like everything about Rika. There’s nothing about her that I dislike even a little. However, Rika has a personality of gold, and thats the main reason she’s my favorite idol. 

I really admire her start in Morning Musume. When she joined, she was one of the new, young members, and was just as inexperienced as the other three in the Fourth Generation. However, immediately she took a position as the group’s older sister; she took it upon herself to be responsible and take care of her generation and the juniors afterwards. Some of the other idols found this annoying; Fujimoto Miki definitely didn’t like it, and I’ve heard that Kago Ai would get upset with Rika. However, even though taking a position of responsibility doesn’t make you popular, necessarily, I think that Rika’s responsible personality has lead to a lot of great things in Hello!Project.

In addition, one of the stories I’ve read from interviews in books and things is that when Rika joined she wasn’t confident AT ALL. She didn’t think she was good enough, and was kind of depressed about it for the first year after she joined. One thing that stands out in my memory is when she joined Country Musume as the new member (for Country Musume ni Ishikawa Rika) she thought she was being transferred permanently, as kind of a “you’re not good enough to be in the main group, so we’ll put you in the less popular group” type of manner. However, she was able to get over this, created a memorable TV persona out of this insecurity (Charmy Ishikawa, an overconfident self-absorbed TV host), and ended up as a great idol.

I also really admire her work she’s done with her skills as an artist, especially as an actress and as a singer. She worked really hard to do her acting roles and it pays off; she still gets acting jobs quite frequently now. For Sukeban Deka, in addition to doing all her idol work, being the lead in v-u-den, she trained 2 hours a day in yo-yo for months. That takes dedication! As a singer, she started off as admittedly not the best of the singers; she simply isn’t a natural at it. However, I’ve heard a live recording of her singing at a stage play, and she has the most beautiful voice! She’s improved quite a bit, which I think is more 
admirable than someone who started out with the best voice.

Finally, one more thing to admire her is the couple of charity shows she’s done. A couple years back Rika did two or three shows where she traveled to different countries, to highlight poverty in them. The maturity with which she dealt with seeing such hardship was admirable; when she spoke to the people living there, she didn’t look down on them, but she treated them with respect. She helped gather water at one village, held a child that was both dirty and looked diseased, and when the point of the show, the water purifier they were bringing to the people, was brought out, she drank the purified water even though it frankly looked pretty gross.

I could ramble on and on about Rika, but I’ll stop now XD. I just have to say that she has a lovely, mature personality that makes her an idol to admire. 

30 Day Idol Challenge Day 8

lol I’m late.

Day 08: Which Idol’s voice do you like best?

This is a bit controversial in American idol fandom, but I REALLY don’t care about voices that much. If a voice is annoying I’ll dislike it, but it’s not 100% necessary for an idol to be really skilled at singing. I love voices that are traditionally seen as “bad.”

I guess I have two examples; the first is of course, Ishikawa Rika. I LOVE her voice to pieces. Some people hate it, and I just think a couple things. First off, singing live IS a bit tougher on her, since she does have a pretty low lung capacity and asthma; she has some breathing issues, so when she’s dancing around singing live isn’t so easy. However, I love her voice ESPECIALLY in non-traditional things, like Dekiru Onna and in As For One Day. That’s where her voice shines; it’s so hauntingly beautiful. 

I LOVE Rika’s voice as the first line here. She’s good enough to be a soloist, IMO. If she sang more things that sounded like Dekiru Onna I would love everything.

However, my current vocal love is AKB48’s Natori Wakana. Wakanyan is ridiculously talented, even for being a research student, and I want nothing more than for her to get lots and lots of solos with this voiiice. I normally don’t care about vocals, but when they’re as beautiful as Wakanyan’s she MAKES me care about hearing her more and more.

30 Day Idol Challenge- Day 3

It’s the third post I’ve made in a row! Wow!
Day 3: If you are a boy, who would be your girlfriend?

Now, obviously I could very easily say my idol favorite, Ishikawa Rika. I do think she would be the perfect girlfriend. She’s caring, funny, seems like a good person to be around, quirky, and the fact that she’s drop dead gorgeous doesn’t hurt. 

How can one woman be so beautiful? It’s enough to give me a complex

However, IMO this is the easy way out. I mean, she’s my favorite idol ever, and if I was a boy I have no doubt in my mind that I’d go for the cuter/feminine girls. I mean, that’s my idol type. I tend to go for the girly-girls. 
So, I was thinking “Hm, Rika’s too easy. Who else of my favorites would I like to go out with?” The highest girl on my ranking that I could think of is the AKB48 KKS Natori Wakana.
She’s cute, a fantastic singer, a really good performer, and is seriously brave. (Watch the 11th gen KKS special of Ariyoshi AKB Kyowaku (sp?); she picks up one snake, it bites her, and she picks the next one up) I LOVE Wakanyan so much, that even though I haven’t seen her in that much she’s my 3rd favorite idol ever (after Ishikawa Rika and Oota Aika). 
However, I don’t know THAT  MUCH about Wakanyan. I know that I adore her, but she still hasn’t really gotten enough exposure to show her personality. Granted, I think she’s shown herself to be really cute and great, but would I want to date someone I didn’t know that much about?
That’s when it hit me. The girl I’d want to date so much if I was a Japanese boy and had any chance in hell with her. 

The choice was obvious! My choice of girlfriend would be the lovely Iwasa Misaki, AKA Wasamin. Now, Wasamin’s totally an underdog; she’s not a frontrunner in AKB at all, not making it to the top 40 in the senbatsu elections, and her only big promotion has been a DVD with Komori Mika as well as her stint in Watarirouka Hashiritai 7. 

However, in the past six months or so I’ve gone from knowing next to nothing about her to being a huge Wasamin wota. Why? because she’s that fantastic.

The first place I knew of her was actually in my AKB Oshi Oota Aika’s birthday show. In that show, the message that was read for Lovetan’s birthday (by.. Sasshi, maybe? I forget) was by Wasamin, who said lovely things that ended up being something that further cemented Lovetan as my favorite. But even still, the sentiment was lovely and sincere, and I wanted to know more about her.

Wasamin really just seems to be this all around wonderful sweetheart. Many fans know her and love her for her voice, which is indeed fantastic. But to me, the things that have really endeared Wasamin to me have been her personality. She’s definitely not the outgoing type. However, she just seems to be one of the sweetest girls in all of AKB, with a lot of maturity. Also, one thing I’ve noticed is that even though she’s potentially one of the least popular girls in AKB, she always seems to be enthusiastic about the group. She also doesn’t try and conform to the group, and I mean that in a good way. How many idols actively sing enka in events, even though that’s not necessarily popular with wota? Enka’s not even my thing, and I’ve got to appreciate Wasamin going with what she likes. 

I’m also completely charmed by Wasamin in this vid. She’s just such a sweetheart, it’s unbelievable.

So yes. Even though I gave it a lot of thought, I’d TOTALLY want Wasamin as a girlfriend, with both Rika and Wakanyan as 2nd place.

30 Day Idol Challenge- Day 1

Anyone who reads this, hello! I’ve neglected this lovely blog for so long, mainly because of school. I love Happy Disco, but man the long posts I tend to do are a pain. So, to get myself back in blogging, I found this challenge at I’ll be posting every single day about idols, and it shall be glorious.

Day 1: Your favorite Idol

Only one answer for me….

The lovely Ishikawa Rika.

I thought of a couple of other options; AKB48’s Oota Aika, for one. My Hello!Project fandom isn’t as strong as my AKB fandom is, nowadays, and Oota is my favorite there. However, when it comes to being an idol fan, no one lives up to Rika.

There are a million reasons why I love her, but it’s mainly her funny and sweet personality. She’s such a caring person, caring for her juniors and seniors at work alike. She’s always hilarious to watch. 

One thing that I personally love about her is that she’s really passionate about her work and loves to sing/perform. Even though I’m in the minority in that I love her voice, both recorded and live, regardless of how you feel about her singing voice she’s a wonderful and passionate performer.

Skip to five minutes in here. She’s not the greatest singer, but the level of emotion and passion she sings with is mindblowing.

I’ve somewhat moved on from the H!P fandom, sadly, but the one thing that hasn’t changed is how fantastic I find Rika.

New PBs AKA Serenyty will be very happy and poor

Sorry I haven’t updated in over two weeks; finals decided to be really tough on me. But I made it through it and I plan on writing more.

First up, the other day Kamei Eri, JunJun and LinLin graduated from Morning Musume. Now, I’m no particular fan of either of these girls; I liked them, but they weren’t necessarily my favorites. But they will definitely be missed from Morning Musume, and I know the first performance or appearance I see without them will be very saddening. No matter how high these girls are on your list, graduations are always very sad, at least to me, and I know I’ll miss these girls; I can only hope that JunJun and LinLin stay in the business.

However, recently there’s been some happier news!

Ex-Morning Musume member Ishikawa Rika, AKA my #1 favorite idol forever is releasing her 11th solo photobook! It’s called Lucky and she’s releasing it on her birthday, January 19th 2011. As a big fan and supporter of Rika, this is wonderful news, and I plan on buying/pre-ordering it soon. Rika’s proven to be a favorite with photobooks, considering she already has 10 of them under her belt, so they’re always really fun and really good. 
And finally, probably more exciting for me…
Mitsui Aika is FINALLY releasing a photobook!!!

I LOVE Aika. Mittsi’s one of my favorite idols and I’ve always wanted her to get a photobook. Aika has actually wanted one of her own for a long time as well, often mentioning it in her New Year’s wishes and things like this. She’s releasing her photobook on January 26th and she also gets a solo DVD as well.
I’m really excited; honestly, Aika has more fans than a lot of people give her credit for, and she really deserves to get some kind of a push. I hope this moves up her sales some and helps her gain some fans!
Rika hasn’t posted any previews of any sort, but on the Up Front channel there’s a preview of Aika’s DVD; already it’s getting some buzz because Aika definitely has cleavage that people haven’t really noticed before.

So yay, two excellent releases for the month of January!

There’s More Than One Disco in Town… yay?

I’m working on both the Ongaku Gatas concert review that I am now DETERMINED to finish if it kills me (each post reviewing two songs takes well over an hour and is kind of draining) and on my super awesome new series about what I like about idols and the qualities I personally find important.

However, Happy Disco doesn’t really fit my needs for fangirling, especially about my favorite idol, Ishikawa Rika.

Thus, the new member of what I’ve decided is my Disco blog series is…

~Charmy Disco~

I plan on this blog to be basically very in depth about Rika’s career; if she does something big I’ll probably cross-post it or just post it in the Happy Disco (that is, Hangry&Angry news will go here, Ongaku Gatas news will go here, but I might link you to the Charmy Disco if it’s SOLELY Rika related). I just feel like I don’t want to clutter this blog which is supposed to be fairly professional-ish with a lot of fangirly “OH MY GAH LOOK AT THIS PICTURE OF CHARMY <333” posts that I’d like to get out somewhere.

But yes, if that’s something you’re interested in, click the link and visit Charmy Disco. I promise I’ll fix the banner that I made at 3 AM soon.