having watched a ton of old AKBINGO! lately, I think what stands out to me is the presence of a narrative. Let's be honest: I love AKB from this era, this is *my* AKB, but when you watch this stuff, the members are very much just ordinary girls, awkward and uncomfortable and pretty much cast adrift. When you look at the episodes in which IDOLING!!! appear also, you can see that the difference between the girls in each group isn't really that vast, they were all cut from the same cloth.

but what AKS did was it gave them roles, and it built a story around those roles. I mean, every entertainment industry does this, but I think with this era of AKB you can see the narrative of the characters these girls are supposed to be unfold throughout the PVs and they use segments in AKBINGO!! to sort of reinforce that, to push the qualities that some of the members have to the forefront. Of course they're also just wholesale inventing narrative at times.

I mean, the consistent ways in which they put Ohori Megumi through shit is... it's uncomfortable at times. It definitely feels cruel in that way that live television just isn't anymore, but also I think it's *meant* to evoke that, that's how they sell her to you, that's how they make her the character that you will support whilst still maintaining that she's just an ordinary girl, an "idol you can meet." Again, all of that reinforces this story that AKS is trying to tell.

I don't know what point I'm trying to make. I guess it's that... the popularity of AKB was never really the members, it was always because of how AKS marketed them.


I remember this happening, and I remember not being able to go, and I regret it to this day.

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