Tag Archives: Japanalia
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, the Ride
I’ve fallen behind on things Kyary, but now I’m obliged to report the opening of the Kyary Pamyu Pamyu XR Ride at Universal Studios Japan (in Osaka).
I confess I was getting ready to write Kyary off after her shark-jumping”Revenge of the Pumpkins” video, but Kyary once again rises like a Phoenix from the ashes. Kyary rules Kawaii.
The Man Behind the Visuals of Kyary Pamyu Pamyu
The man behind Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s music is Yasutaka Nakata.
The man behind her visuals is Sebastian Masuda:
Overdue credit where overdue credit is due.
He strikes me as an Andy Warhol type figure.
Indirect Kyary News: Kawaii Monster Cafe
It won’t surprise readers to learn that the creator of this restaurant in Harajuku is the same person who produces Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s videos (Sebastian Masuda). In this case, I’d say that the restaurant concept is more on target with the kawaii weirdness than Kyary’s recent videos.
I get a Clockwork Orange meets Tim Burton meets Candyland vibe.
Xmas Season Reblog & Tatsuro Yamashita & Christmas Eve & and Classic JR CMs
The unforgettable 1983 Christmas classic (though this video is a bit cornball).
This song also became the theme for the Japan Railway (JR) “Christmas Express” CMs for the bullet train (1988-1992), one of the most romantic CM campaigns ever, compiled here:
This is the English version of the song. A bit lost in translation, but it’s still good:
Addendum: I just noticed a detail in the first JR CM. You can see the breath/steam of the boyfriend hiding behind the station platform pillar at 0:18-0:19, before he appears to surprise his girlfriend. Nice touch!
Bodacious Boldness Brimming at BoFN
In my monthly stints at The Blog of Funny Names, I think I’ve done just about everything to try to impress the big kids over there. Music. More music. Psychological attention tests. Anthropology. Purple prose. Public service spots. Poetry! Uh, movies? . . .
Yeah, I did just about everything. Everything except actually generate some traffic, that is. Views for my posts over there generally get a modest initial dribble, then invariably settle down into a long drought with sporadic drips.
But that’s about to change, my fine funny name friendz.
With today’s contribution you’re gonna finally see that I’m not just some weird, geeky type induhvidyool.
Oh, no. I’m a playa, see? I’m one bad-acid mojo mopho.
Oh, yeah. I’m gonna generate some hits. And I’m gonna get um right now. And then those views are gonna keep coming. And then more. And more. And one month later they’re still gonna be poppin’ up those little views per hour bars.
And you’re all gonna say, whoooooooaaaaaa! Who exactly is that wild, woozy wizard of words? And how on earth did he do that?
And then I’m gonna set my hat in place, straighten my lapels, adjust my sunglasses, take the toothpick out of my teeth and say, Heed me and behold, O ye collegiate colleagues of mine, for it is no mystery. I did it the only way I know how.
Christmas Eve & Tatsuro Yamashita & Repeat Post
English version of original song (1983).
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu & Mottai Night Land Redux & AU CM
Kyary always comes around in crushing waves of activity. When she flips into high gear it’s hard to keep up. So, let’s see, we’ve recently been compelled to cover her toothpaste incarnation and her inspired new video. Here, Kyary uses the same Mottainai song in an AU promo.
I’m getting a kind of Studio Ghibli hit with the ghostly entities. Those, and Kyary’s pointy teeth, are just in time for Halloween. Although it’s hard for Kyary to top Fashion Monster for the Halloween ambience.
Stylist: Kyary-chan, you got on Smart Value, right?
[“chan” is an endearing diminuitive suffix],
Kyary: Hunh? What the h*ll is that?
Ghostly entities appear with the letter “Mo.”
Entities: Mo? Mo? Mo? Mo? Mottainai! (Wasteful)
Stage crew member (knocking on door): Kyary-chan? . . . It’s no good.
Handler: She won’t come out.
Director: Kyary-chan? [Opens door]
[Kyary sings the first lines of “Mottai Night Land”]
Voiceover (reads campaign slogan): Such a waste when people don’t know about it.
Director: She’s possessed.
And don’t forget it’s Day Three for Nightskyradio’s Rocktober Halloween Countdown!
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu & Mottai Night Land
It’s been ages since I posted more than once on the same day, but some situations call for emergency measures. Like Kyary’s new video! Catch it here while it still hovers in the tens of thousands.
I think we got a winner this time. I was going kind of meh on the music at first, since it sounded basically like a retread of Furisodeshon, but it actually picks up, and for total spectacle this is definitely two thumbs up. The third or fourth time through I started to catch how operatic this song is, kind of the way “Bohemian Rhapsody” is operatic, and there are quite a lot of skillful touches in the arrangement–I almost want to call it “orchestration” instead of arrangement.
I must confess, I had been progressively deflated by each new Kyary video after Fashion Monster and Furisodeshon. She seemed to be losing her signiature vision for wild, hallucinogenic pastiche. But here, when she throws skeleton-headed marionettes together with a pastel baby piano, Alice in Wonderland motifs, a giant chainsaw, golden oiled bikini dancers (the most overt sexuality Kyary has ever depicted to date), and pink strawberry sprinkled poo-poo, then, yeah, I think we can say Kyary’s got her groove back.
“Mottainai” is “What a waste!” (Here, in the sense of “It’s wasted on me” or “I don’t deserve it.”) Kyary combines “mottainai” with “night land” to get “Mottai night land.” Her theme remains the chronologically mature girl stuck in prepubescence, standing at the threshhold of adult life and never quite stepping in. And then making that delicious hesitation (or trying to make it) into a magnificent imaginative gesture. The cautious renunciation of adventurousness declares itself as the ultimate creative adventure. Romanized lyrics and English translation here.
The Russian Duo Makes a Comeback
t.A.T.u. makes a comeback on a Snickers CM.
The duo is knocked over and stomp back to the bench in a huff. Teammates approach and say, “Hey, the game isn’t over yet.” “Change your attitude.” They throw their mitts away in outrage and vent in Russian. The third teammate says, “Being hungry makes them selfish. How about a Snickers?” t.A.T.u. chomps down on the Snikcers bars then transforms back into two compliant baseball boys. Later, t.A.T.u. is batting and the teammate says, “Wha-!? Now the batter, too?!”
A press release for the CM?
Now we have press releases and “the making of” documentaries for frickin’ tv commercials?!? Is this the end of civilization, or what?