I decided, probably against my better judgement, that I should wait to write my thoughts on the new 9th generation before I got to know them. I was only a wota of 6 months when Aika was chosen, and 9 months when the pandas entered the scene, so I made rather hasty decisions on what I thought about them.
So, here I am. Two months after the ninth generation was introduced to the fans, we got to hear them sing for one of the first times, and we got to see their personalities shine during the many fan club events and bijou gakuen appearences.
For my sanity, I’ll break the ninth generation down by member, but first some overall thoughts about these new girls:
From what I can tell, none of them but Mizuki can sing very well. They’ll probably improve over the years, but my main concern with the new line-up is simple: who will make up for the loss of the great singer that Ai Takahashi was? If we still had Linlin, the answer would be simple, but since she’s graduated, which of the 9th generation, if any, can fill her shoes. In my eyes, I don’t see much hope, but that may change soon. I know that Reina is a great singer and that Gaki can sing very well when she sings down low, and Sayumi had potential with her singing that’s been wasted, and with how long she’s been in the group, I don’t think can be fixed. Aika also had talent, but I think that she’s been taught to sing in a way that is just bad. Dancing-wise, Riho should make up for any problems Kanon has with dance, and Ai’s graduation. All four 9th generation members bring great personality to the group, and could make the group great personalities for variety shows from now on, which may be why UFA has changed Hello!Project’s show again: to show their personalities.
Now, on to the main attraction.
Singing Potential: 3/10 She’s YELLING, not singing. Man, sometimes I think that Tsunku picked her only for her great personality, because otherwise she leaves much to be desired. Hopefully the vocal training will pay off, because, man, can she not sing at this point. The training seemed to really pay off for the recording, so maybe she will improve quite a bit.
Personality: 10/10 She might just have the best personality we’ve seen since Aibon and Nono. She’s hilarious, and I like to see the new pictures of her escapades during rehearsals and events every day on Sayumi, Gaki, Ai, and Reina’s blogs.
Dancing Potential: 2/10 I doubt that she’ll ever be a really good dancer unless she takes classes, and with Morning Musume, I wonder if she’ll have time for that. When she forgets a dance, though, she’ll probably make up a hilarous routine to make up for it.
Other Thoughts: Initially, I didn’t think that she was that pretty. Honestly, I still don’t. She is mighty cute, though, and she has a face that it seems puberty will do some very good things to. Five years in the future, she’ll probably be a real beauty.
The Bottom Line: She is the youngest, so I’ll give her some time to improve on her dancing and singing.
Singing Potential: 7/10 If she deals with that nasal tone of voice, she could become a good singer, and could possibly take over Ai’s parts on some songs. Let’s hope they put her voice to some good training!
Personality: 6/10 When she was on the Shugo Chara Egg portion of Shugo Chara, I always found her kind of boring and awkward. In fact, she was one of the eggs that I thought would never get into Morning Musume based on personality alone. The new 9th generation members have been doing wonders, though, and I’m starting to see a really fun and energetic personality show when she goofs off with them.
Dancing Potential: 9/10 She already knows most of the Hello!Project dances, and she’s been in dance training with Hello!Project for years. While she may not be So You Think You Can Dance material, she’ll certainly be good enough at dance to perform all of Morning Musume’s dances very well.
Other Thoughts: Mizuki is acting as a mentor to the other 9th generation girls, but they’re teaching her a lot. She got a new hair cut which shows how pretty she really is, despite how bad that ponytail she had in SC!E made her look. She’s really learning how to be an entertaining idol from the girls that were never idols before, and I think that it’s really making her a great Morning Musume member.
The Bottom Line: She’s learning more about being a leader and an idol from the 9th generation, and is turning into a great Morning Musume member because of it.
Singing Potential: 5/10 ANOTHER screamer. At least she gets the rhythm, and has good notes when she’s not screaming. Hopefully she can fix her screaming problem, and then I’ll be able to better judge her singing. She’s also formed some bad habits when it comes to the cutoffs on her syllables, so hopefully she can fix that, too.
Personality: 7/10 This girl has lots of confidence to, in a war of the more vocal members of the fanbases, be an open AKB48 fan and try out for Morning Musume. She seems a little shy on Bjiou Gaku, but having the other 9th generation members around her, she seems to come out of her shell and becomes quite silly. I hope that we can see more of that on future shows.
Dancing Potential: 9/10 She can learn a dance well, and probably knows some idol dances from her days as a fan. From how easily she learned the dance to Tomo, I have faith that she’ll be able to learn the dances for the next concert well, and that she’ll be able to catch up with the current Morning Musume.
Other Thoughts: She’s an in-group wota. Of another group. Besides making her instant friends with Sayumi, this will probably end up giving her the drive to become a great idol because she knows what the fans like and don’t like, and can probably bring some new ideas to the group. She’s also already good at posing, and her looks aren’t half-bad. She’ll definately grow up to be a real beauty, and I could see her being a very sexy idol in another 5-10 years.
The Bottom Line: This girl can really do some great things in the future, and could become a fan favorite once the fans get over the fact that she likes AKB48.
Singing Potential: 8/10 With more training, I could see her being a very good singer, but from what was on Bijou Gaku, with the voice teacher making her sing with a more nasal tone, she could become a singer like Sayumi or Aika, who could’ve been good, but blew it.
Personality: 8/10 We haven’t seen her being too silly because she’s been shown to be a hard worker on Bijou Gaku, but from the blog pictures and stories, along with her interactions with the other girls, she seems to be a very silly person. Who knows, maybe she’ll end up being the Aibon to Suzuki’s Nono (If we’re talking about when Aibon and Nono were in Morning Musume).
Dancing Potential: 1000000/10 Me thinks teh meter broke there. Her dancing is SO EPIC. It’s also probably why she got such a big fan base among the H!O crowd before she was even chosen for Morning Musume. I demand Riho dance solos at least every concert, and possibly dance duets with Ai at Ai’s final concert tours this year. I DEMAND IT.
Other Thoughts: Riho certainly is a very pretty girl, and that will help her out quite a bit. Her long legs will also help her gain a fanbase for her legs alone, and with her fierce dance moves, she’s probably got the abs to make a bikini photobook a must once she’s a little older. Riho also has been an amateur idol of sorts with a talent agency that she danced with, so we can be sure that she’ll know how to wow a crowd.
The Bottom Line: She looks to be lined up to be Ai Takahashi 2.0: great dancing, singing potential, acting ability (she won Morning Musume’s acting audition this summer), a great body, a pretty face, a personality, and a great fanbase.
9ki (Cookies) Bottom Line: This generation is going to bring some major change to Morning Musume, and will make the group a much better group now and in the long run.