[Talk] Tokyo and Kansai Juniors

Since a long time ago, the juniors in Johnny's have always been divided into Tokyo juniors and the Kansai juniors. Tokyo juniors consisted of the kids from the Kanto area and Kansai are from... well, Kansai area. Anyways, although there are bright shining stars that came out from the Kansai region like... say, KinKi Kids, Kansai juniors are still treated unfairly even up to this day.

The Shounen Club is a show that airs on NHK which gives exposure to the juniors to make them sell a lot even upon debut. Weekly exposure earns them a steady and strong fanbase. Kids like Yabu Kouta, Yaotome Hikaru, Nakajima Yuto were well known before their debut a few months ago. Before these kids, we have kids like Yamashita Tomohisa, Ikuta Toma, Jimmy Mackey, and the KAT-TUN boys. Before them, we have another show called Idols on Stage and Gakibara which often show the kids above like Yamashita and the rest, they also have Kazama Shunsuke, Tsubasa Imai, the Arashi boys and of course, Hideaki Takizawa, whom we shall call King Tackey in this blog.

Of course, all the kids above were Tokyo juniors. Out of these Tokyo kids, we have also a handful, just a handful of more privileged Kansai kids that are able to worm their way into the show to gain exposure and fans. We have Shibutani Subaru, Murakami Shingo, Yokoyama Yu and Nishikido Ryo. (The rest of the Kanjani8 members come in a wee bit later into the TV scenes.) In Gakibara or say, USO Japan, only these four boys appear more often than the rest of the Kansai boys.

In those shows, of course, although there was the saying that we have "Tackey of the East and Subaru of the West" we all know that the Tokyo boys are dominating the air time and the game and the better jobs in every possible way. When the juniors were to draw tasks to perform from a box, the Tokyo kids got to draw and the Kansai kids had the tasks drawn for them. Sometimes, the person drawing will already have a paper in his hands before he puts a hand into the box, pretending to draw from the box.

In another situation, it was a game, Kansai versus Tokyo juniors. Like all the other unfair times, Tokyo had 5 representatives and Kansai only 4. And of course, since Tackey is like, the head concubine of Johnny Kitagawa (The queen is Higashiyama, we all know that.) everyone sucks up to Tackey. But we can see the rift between the Tokyo and Kansai kids.

KinKi are their seniors so even Tackey has to be polite to them. But for Kanjani8 it was a long way before they reach where they are today. Being made fun of for their antics, being treated unfairly, being under-publicized, having to work twice as hard to achieve what Tokyo juniors can achieve without effort.

Not saying that the Tokyo juniors are bad in any way or that they don't give effort at all, because they do work hard to achieve popularity as well. You know how I love Arashi and stuff. BUT, I am just saying that times were hard for Kansai Juniors.

That is why for another all-Kansai group (besides KinKi Kids - we have Joushima and Okada in TOKIO and V6 who got lots of respect from other Johnny's) to be able to hold a 47-prefecture all-Japan tour and to be able to sell out a show at the Tokyo Dome (55,000 seats) is just amazing. KAT-TUN got to do that UPON debut. KAT-TUN's debut was a big deal, very publicized, even if they had to wait. I think Johnny was trying out a new formula on them, building up the hype before debut. And it worked.

For Kanjani8 who debuted about 2 years before KAT-TUN was a different story. Arashi got their press conference on board a cruise ship in Hawaii, as compared to them (The sempai-kouhai gap is almost the same, for the three older members are almost the same age as Ohno and Sakurai and Aiba.) Kanjani8 had a pathetic conference in same room. I bet they sat on stools only. They had "flags of their names behind them", according to Ohkura Tadayoshi.

Their first single was released without much publicity at all. Their "Naniwa Iroha Bushi" was an enka-type of song. So, it was first in Johnny's for anyone to sing enka, so it was difficult for Johnny's fans, mostly comprised of pop-listeners, to accept it.

But, singles later, the gap between them and KAT-TUN is closing up inch by inch. They still cannot match KAT-TUN in terms of sales but KAT-TUN's sales are declining. Although "Keep The Faith" broke the decline... but Kanjani8's sales are increasing. So I guess its good. Although "Zukkoke Otoko Michi" sold less than their best selling "Kanfuu Fighting" we are hoping for the best for the Kansai boys! Although like, I like KAT-TUN's songs, but all their exposure... is enough la... they have had enough luck for the past two years.

Kanjani8 hasn't been able to hook their songs to a drama you see. That is the secret to selling singles in Japan. Hook it to a drama or a movie. Surely it will sell. More than ever. Look at "Konayuki" look at "Hana", look at err... "Hitomi wo Tojite", look at "Love So Sweet", look at "Flavor of Life" look at "Keep the Faith" and "Ashita Hareru Kana".

Hook it to a drama/movie. That's the secret. Of course a crap song wouldn't do. The song itself has to be good too.

Oh and all 3 of Kanjani8's singles released this year got to the top 25 of the best selling singles of the year on the Oricon Charts, so that's something to celebrate.

Qrap, it appears that my great whatever for Arashi is almost gone. I mean, my week-long hiatus from Arashi has made me... I still like them A LOT A LOT, but when I watch them, it seems that they are so... alien. Its like, they give me a different feeling as compared to before I left. The familiarity is gone...


Off I go to rediscover my Arashi-love.


JUST one more news.... Tackey & Tsubasa's "Samurai" only got to the 99th place selling less than 100,000 copies. Whee, eat that Tackey, being King of the Juniors doesn't mean that you'll retain your fanbase. Loller. V6's "Jasmine/Rainbow" double A-side sold less than 100k as well, at 96th place. Tackey & Tsubasa "X~Dame/Crazy Rainbow" sold app. 97k only, at number 88. AT 85 we have TOKIO's "Sorafune" released in 2006, it sold all the way to 2007 and still beat both TxT's singles, newly released this year. Wahaha, I cannot explain how... amused I am at these.

Tohoshinki got to 64th place with 124k copies app.. They sold more than TxT!! V6's Honey Beat at number 50 selling more than 142,000 copies. TegoMass's "Kiss Kaerimichi Love Song" at 46 selling 147k. KAT-TUN's 2006 single sold a lot this year... at 44 with 148k. The top 30 I previously covered at another update... so I guess this is all.

It is undeniably the era of Kanjani8, KAT-TUN and NewS now. NewS is back stronger than ever with less members. With Arashi leading the pack in terms of seniority and also sometimes, sales, and with HSJ trailing behind these big three, the next few years will be interesting to watch.

Because never has Johnny's seen more groups battling it out in the market. OR at least I think not. There are so many groups now, so many. I think Johnny's should stop letting new ones debut (Although A.B.C. should really get a chance before they pass the golden age. like Ikuta Toma.) because Cannibalism will appear where the sales of the old product will be taken away by the new product. Sales cannibalism.

And I initially intended for this to be an essay about Yokoyama Yu. Lol, changed the title to fit the content.

Next time, Yoko. ^^

0 Farted :: [Talk] Tokyo and Kansai Juniors

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