The PV for S/mileage’s new single, Choto Mate Kudasai , has been released. You can check it out on Youtube here. It seems S/mileage will be continuing on their up-and-down rollercoaster ride of a career… Some of their releases lately have been amazing (see the recently released Please Mini Skirt Post Woman, or Uchouten Love), but some have been not as good, ranging from OK, to bordering awful. This one is definitely closer to awful for me, but there are still some good points to it that save it, a little bit.
I suppose I should just air my grievances right away. Here’s what I hate: The song itself is poorly written, repetitive, annoying, and completely out of the vocal capabilities of these girls. S/mileage has lost its two strongest singers in Saki and Yuuka, so what does UFA do? Give them something so high-pitched, even these high-pitched girls can’t hit the notes. On the other hand, even if Saki and Yuuka were still present in this, it would still have been a terrible song.
The repetition of “choto mate kudasai!” (spelling intentional, the kana actually is チョトマテクダサイ！), throughout the whole song annoyed me, because it wasn’t cute, cool, or catchy. The tune of this line is not strong enough to be something you want to listen to, but in order to hear the song, you have to listen to that same line, over and over and over again. Really, the song itself is the thing I hate the most this time around. They have all these new girls and are trying to recover from losing some key members, and they put out a song like this? If S/mileage is going to be successful with the new line-up, they’re going to need something better than this tripe.
Other things I hate: Those horrid ugly dresses, Kana’s voice, Rina’s face, Ayaka’s existence, and Meimi’s boring new hair cut.
The video is simple, and with a simple concept and simple execution. The dance was really silly and definitely entertaining to watch, which was a pleasant surprise. Aside from showing the girls dancing against a school-play-esque backdrop, the only other thing different about this video were the random squished-girl-on-glass shots – basically, like they were catapulted and hit a pane of glass. Then they slowly slide down it, in an exaggerated, cartoonish fashion. Those scenes were fun, but they weren’t what made me like the video. What drew me to the video was the way all the girls seemed like they were having a blast filming it. They were silly, fun, and seemed to be having a really good time.
Meimi is a total whack job in her scenes. I love her, so much. I don’t care for her new haircut (I liked her with the forehead), but even if her haircut is boring, she is definitely not. The girl was spazzing out for almost the entirety of the PV. She’s really something to watch! I know her teeth are terrifying, but I’m totally on the Meimi train.
Kana is another that drew my attention, maybe for the first time. I still hate her voice, but she injected some personality into her shots, and I liked that. Every so often during the dance, she would fall behind on the moves and look to the others and try to catch up. Anyone who has seen her dance practice videos knows the reference; Kana’s not a good dancer and comes with no dancing experience. So it seems they have done a bit of an homage to that in this video, with her struggling to keep up. It seemed to tie in to the lyrics, too – “chotto matte kudasai” means “wait, please!”. Kana’s still the weakest member, talent-wise, but she seems like a fun girl, at least.
Akari is one to keep an eye on as well – she actually gets a central role in this single, and her vocals are some of the best in the whole song. She’s cute, she can sing, she can dance – she blends in with the two veteran members so seamlessly, if you didn’t know it you would think she’d been in the group the whole time.
Rina… I feel bad being mean to her all the time… But… They oughta just do what they had done to Mai in C-ute’s indies singles and stick a giant pair of shades on her. Except just never take them off.
Then we have our veterans, Kanon and Ayaka. Kanon is great, a ham as always during her scenes. I absolutely love her. Ayaka is just the opposite, I don’t like her at all, but she manages to be passably cute in this, when her mouth is shut.
So overall… This is not a single I will buy. This is not a song I like to listen to. I feel like UFA has totally dropped the ball with song writing lately, between this song and the new Morning Musume song and all… But the girls themselves are what saves this PV, and makes it entertaining, even with a bad song. That’s a pretty good accomplishment, especially since 2 of my favorites are nowhere to be found in the idol world anymore.
Alas, since the video is just a Youtube clip, I was unable to get good dance shots, or show some of the more crazy moments, because it all blurs up, but here are some screen caps anyway.
So all in all, the PV is fun and totally worth watching, if for Meimi’s antics alone, but the song leaves much (read: everything) to be desired. The girls are trying – but they need something better than this to work with.