Oh my god. Do guys have any idea how bored I've been for the first part of January? It feels like nothing has come out from the idols that I review. The Help me!! PV? Still not here. Info about Mirai no Museum? Nada. A leak of the Get You single? Ahaha, no. I swear I feel like I've been going crazy without anything to review. Yeah, I know that all the lovely J-pop artists are probably in the phase where they're more of getting stuff ready for the new year but still! I've got the patience of a dog on crack and I wanna review something! Particularly a PV. Which is why I'm very happy that Kyarypamyupamyu, the resident weirdo of the J-pop industry, has released a PV! Would I have preferred someone like Perfume to have released a PV to cure my increasingly potent Perfume withdrawal. Well... yes. But that's okay! I've always seen Kyary as the idol to review when Perfume hasn't released anything since she's also produced by Nakata so in a weird way it's like... the opening act of a concert. Not the best part of the show or what you came for but it'll do for now!
I really do like Kyary and I loved Fashion Monster and its PV and her PVs are always entertaining to watch. So what was up next for Kyary after the Halloween-tastic release that is Fashion Monster? Well, in the wacky world of Kyarypamyupamyu... she's turning 20 aka the age of adulthood in Japan! So in order to celebrate that, she's releasing a double A-side titled Kimi ni 100 Percent/Furisodation. The song Furisodation is meant to be an ode to Kyary's coming of age as an adult, indicated by the use of "furisode" in the song's title. From what I've gathered that term is used when someone who turns 20 transitions into adulthood, wearing a kimono and celebrating the fact that they can now drink and smoke and do other things! Kind of like turning 21 here in America but instead of wearing kimonos, I'm pretty sure most 21-year olds just go to a bar and party all night. Then again, as a minor I have no idea. But I was curious as to how this song would sound with the theme of growing up and all.
Now when I first heard the title of this song, I couldn't help but think of Foundation by Perfume... I guess because both songs start with "F" and end in "ation." I couldn't help but think that Furisodation was going to sound like Foundation and when I finally did hear the song naturally, neither song sounded very similar! Well... there is one part in Furisodation that reminds me a lot of Foundation in terms of tone and sound. The singing right before the chorus starts is very Foundation-esque and honestly, the more I think about it, this is the first Kyary song that I think could easily pass as a Perfume song. Like in my head, I can switch her vocals out and replace them with A-chan, Nocchi and Kashiyuka's and the song still sounds like it could fit either artist. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing. On one hand, it shows how ridiculously light Perfume's musical output has grown (thanks for all the "fun, catchy songs" Nakata/sarcasm).
And on the other hand, it shows just how... un-Kyary this song feels. Well, okay, it doesn't completely sound like a song that Kyary would never do but I expected something... I don't know, quirkier? It's not that this is a bad song but the style just feels much more subdued and toned down than what I'm used to hearing from Kyary. I don't expect all her songs to be PonPonPon-levels of quirky and childish but for her, this song is kind of... bland. But even then I don't want to use the word "bland" when describing this song because that implies that the entire song is bland. There are parts I liked! I liked the upbeat instrumental; it sounded kinda 80s with the hyper synths and the song felt very energetic in those parts! The chorus itself was very fun and catchy but the rest of the song didn't really measure up to that. So overall, Furisodation has these ups and downs where the song is really awesome and then parts where it's not-so-awesome and kind of boring. I kind of had this same problem with Tsukema Tsukeru; the chorus part was really good but the rest of the song is... not.
Well, on the up side the most entertaining aspect of Kyarypamyupamyu is her music videos! With awesome PVs like PonPonPon and Fashion Monster, I always find something I like in her PVs and I generally like the all-out weirdness each one has! So for a song about becoming an adult, I wondered how the Furisodation PV would be handled. So let's move on to my first screencap of my first PV review of 2013!!!
My first PV review of the year starts with a smoking rejected Muppet. Okay then!
Oh my god I want one of those hats give me one NOW.
I don't know why but this shot strangely reminds me of The Last Supper... and I'm not even that religious!
Cute graphics... this set makes me think of peppermints!
I see you trying to join the Kyary Table of Awesomeness.
Eugh, I hate red velvet cake. By the way, are you guys going to get around to eating anytime soon?
I swear I've seen this effect in some other PV before. I just can't remember which one...
Kyary, did you steal those apples from a Perfume PV?
Kyarypamyupamyu: classier than you can ever hope to be.
Man, table dances are so cool... wait, not THAT kind of table-dancing!
What's with all the rock-paper-scissors dance moves in this PV!? This isn't a Janken PV! (thank god too...)
Okay, I really love these scenes with Kyary slammed-out drunk.
I'm really not surprised that Kyary's BFFs with this creature. She's like a freaking Disney Princess! She befriends every strange and quirky creature you can think of!
Please tell me that's not their real hair. I would go ballistic if my hair looked like that.
Geez, Kyary, just 'cause you're 20 doesn't mean you have to drink that much!
Thanks to Kyarypamyupamyu, I learned that drinking leads to seeing the world in red and white, weird geometric hallucinations and cigar-puffing Muppets!
Oh, she's so adorable!
Hrm, this shot is surprisingly tame for a Kyary PV! But then again I'm talking about the idol that has PVs where she throws up eye-balls so I use that term very lightly.
Now that I'm an adult I CAN FLY!!!
I swear I could make a bazillion captions out of these shots.
Okay, the moving... whatever in the borders of these shots are really making me feel... drunk!
So many geometric shapes... I feel like I'm back in 9th grade geometry class!
These effects are just so adorable!
And Kyary is also just as captivating and entertaining in this PV as her others!
I'm sure those two will make a great couple.
-gasp- HE ATE KYARYPAMYUPAMYU!
So this is why Kyary's PVs are so trippy...
This is insane and I LOVE it!
D'aw, I don't know how this is relevant to the PV but it's adorable!
I notice these effects are a lot like Eien Pressure's... but at least these look good!
This is what you get for trying to eat me!
Please Idol Gods, please help me become more popular than Perfume, please help me become more popular than Perfume...
And so Kyary's PV about adulthood ends with...
...a hangover. Works for me!
Oh man, screencapping a Kyary PV is always so much fun! There's just so much eye-catching and crazy stuff to look at when you watch one of her PVs and Furisodation is no exception! Admittedly, this is one of Kyary's less crazy PVs but it still has all the crazy charm you'd find in any of her other PVs! But instead of a world of fashion monsters, this Kyary PV has just one monster! And like every other Kyary Creature, he is a strange combination of weird, creepy, cute, unsettling, and hilarious. I actually kind of like that Kyary interacted less with weird creatures in this PV and it spends a lot more time focusing on the idol herself along with her backup dancers. I've always said one of the strongest points of Kyarypamyupamyu and her PVs is that she herself has such charisma and charm onscreen that she can carry a whole PV. I always love looking at her facial expressions, her interactions with the backup dancers, she's just a lot of fun to watch!
Of course, the set designs and costuming also help... One of the biggest elements of the PV that stuck out to me were the hairstyles used for the backup dancers. It's probably because any type of hair beyond a ponytail is extremely elaborate to a hair-challenged person like me so to see perfectly geometrically shaped hairstyles was both weird and awesome. But mostly weird because I'd hate to have hair like that. Much like a lot of her PVs, Furisodation only has a few sets and they're a lot more minimal than PVs like PonPonPon and Fashion Monster. But honestly, with a PV like this, you don't really need a lot of stuff to be entertained. Kyary herself provides a lot of the entertainment I got out of this PV and she's one of the main reasons that I love this PV. This is one of those PVs that just improves the accompanying song. Listening to the song on audio, it doesn't impress me but in this PV, Furisodation is given new life and an amazing theme attached to it. Speaking of that theme...
Obviously the PV is a visual representation of Kyary turning 20 and entering adulthood. The most apparent aspect of this concept is in the sheer coloring of the PV: a majority of the PV features the colors red and white. In Japan, these are the traditional colors that symbolize a young person's coming of age and the use of the red and white costumes, the set, the props, and special effects reflect that. I always feel like the beginning of 2012 is when you get a bunch of songs by idols centered around graduating/becoming an adult (*cough* AKB48). Usually they're very serious or nostalgic or even youthful and talk of the future and the uncertainties of growing up. Furisodation is also about becoming an adult but the way it's approached in this PV is much sillier and wacky. As much as I like the serious take on the graduation/growing up concept, it's fun to see a sillier take on that too. The basic premise of the PV is that Kyary gets drunk. Really drunk. So drunk she starts seeing weird geometric shapes and a cigar-puffing Muppet man. And she smokes from a sparkly, bejeweled cigarette. And it is absolutely hilarious.
I'm not exaggerating, I laughed out loud during the shots where it showed Kyary drunk out of her mind and seeing all sorts of crazy shit. I even loved how the end of the video ended with a strong indication that she threw up and ended up with a massive hangover being comforted by the Muppet man. I wouldn't call this PV a skewering of Coming of Age Day but more of an... affectionate twist on it. Kyary works best when she can be silly and audacious and weird and in Furisodation, she is totally in her element. For that reason, I had a lot of fun watching this PV and I loved to see such a realistic take on adulthood. Okay, seeing red and white special effects may not seem realistic but you know what does? Intoxication. How many of you 20+ readers out there have gotten drunk? Coming of age is generally associated with gaining the freedom to legally drink and smoke in most countries. And I loved seeing Kyary's lighthearted and fun take on that; it's a ridiculous but fun representation of coming of age and I loved it.
So overall, I have to give Furisodation four out of five apples. Although the song itself is probably one of my least favorite songs Kyary's done so far, the PV makes up for it with its quirky set decorations and the unique twist on the coming of age theme. Kyary's personality really shined in this PV and even though the Furisodation PV might be one of her less crazy PVs, I think it can put a smile on anyone's face simply because seeing Kyary slam-faced drunk is absolutely hilarious.
Just remember kids: don't get drunk. And don't drink until you're of age. Because trust me, you will not turn into Kyarypamyupamyu!