Saturday, January 1, 2011

Three Hours of Hosting Bliss?

Happy New Year, everyone! In the whirlwind of getting everything together in lab, traveling, trying to process the latest of unbelievable developments, the significance of New Year's Eve and New Year's seems to have gotten a little lost. But of course, I did watch 「紅白歌合戦」--how could I not? With Arashi hosting for the first time, it promised to be three hours of amazingness. It wasn't really, though. As a general rule everyone was bad, forgettable, or both, with a few exceptions here and there. I apologize in advance for the utter miscellany that is this post.

Daisuke Takahashi was a special guest! I'm not sure why they couldn't have had Mao Asada too (or instead), considering she one-upped him by taking silver at the Olympics, but I guess interrupting her training right now would the worst idea ever. I also didn't know Daisuke is as short as he is.

Things got off to a weird start when Ayumi Hamasaki sang some melody-less song in a wedding dress with the LONGEST VEIL EVER. By LONGEST VEIL EVER I mean longer than Maria's train in The Sound of Music. Absurd.

Arashi's hosting skills were pretty decent. 相葉くん talked a lot more in a leader way than I expected, and 翔くん talked just as much as I expected. 松潤 had questionable hair, ニノ acted like a girl, and リーダー didn't talk unless absolutely necessary. It was amazing.

AKB48 will forever annoy me, but whatever. The same applies to Perfume, but my mother was blinded to their annoyingness by the attractively stylized set behind them. The background was really pretty, but no matter--their existence bothers me endlessly.

Years ago, my sister and I used to watch several anime shows back-to-back while staying at our grandmother's house in Japan, and I really liked the ending theme song to 「忍たま乱太郎」. I forgot about this until last night, when I suddenly heard the song again--performed by NYC. I was pretty simultaneously sure that a) 「100%勇気」was definitely the theme song b) NYC was either two years old or not born yet when the show began c) 「100%勇気」could not possibly be the theme song. It finally occurred to me now to just look it up, and lo and behold it was a cover! Vindicated. And because everyone needs a bit of pure feel-goodness:

Speaking of Johnny's... TOKIO is incredibly old. And two songs a medley do not make. Although I was really excited that Arashi performed my two favorites of their singles from 2010--Troublemaker and Monster--smashing their truncated versions together did not quite make the special "2010 Medley" that the lineup promised. Their performance, though, did remind me of one of the loveliest lyrics I know:

I'm pretty sure I love Kiyoshi Hikawa. Not actually, but as an entertainer he's just simply brilliant. A "rumba," followed by a "baiyon"? Thank you, comic relief. (Side note: I love that when you type in "Hikawa Kiyoshi" into Google, the suggestion is "Hikawa Kiyoshi gay." Of course.) The very fact that I saw at least three outfits on him in one night is fabulous.

SMAP was dressed in surprisingly muted colors, and 中居正広 was as awful as ever. Like, really terrible. I think when someone gets to that point, all you can do is marvel.

May the first week of the new decade bring many catch-up posts! Haha.

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