Denny Sinnoh's "Akihabara Starlight"

Watarirouka Hashiritai (渡り廊下走り隊) aka the “Corridor Running Team”. 

Watarirouka Hashiritai 7

Watarirouka Hashiritai 7

I already miss the AKB48 sub-group the Watarirouka Hashiritai 7!  They were my favorite of all the AKB sub-units.  Unfortunately, they announced their disbanding on Christmas 2013, then gave their last performance in spring 2014.  The Watarirouka Hashiritai group was fronted by Mayu Watanabe, and she was the focus of most of their music videos.  The other members were Haruka Nakagawa (also of JKT48), Ayaka Kikuchi, and Aika Oota (of HKT48).  The original quartet was joined by Mika Komori, Kazumi Urano and Iwasa Misaki in 2011-12.  At that point they became the “Watarirouka Hashiritai 7”.  (I plan a future blog dedicated to member Iwasa Misaki aka “Wasamin”, who has had solo success as an Enka-singer.)

The musical style is “bubblegum”, but I would describe it as a power-pop adult bubblegum sound.  Music historians will appreciate the 1960s pop and 1980s new wave elements in the music.  Many of the WH and WH7 are available on YouTube, and I will showcase a few of the cute dance-music ones here.  Video and audio quality are variable.  Some videos have been edited in length.

This first video “Hetappi Wink” showcases Mayu Watanabe.  The girls are shooting a mascara commercial.  They are supposed to make a “wink” at the camera.  The running joke is that Mayu cannot wink just one eye, much to the consternation of the corporate production team.  I love the interaction between the director, the producer, and the company man.  They cannot finish the commercial because of Mayuyu.  You will see that the more she FAILS, the CUTER it gets.  No Japanese language skills are required!  Everything is perfectly understood through body language and context.  I love the WH7’s “Fiesta outfits” they wear here. Did the story turn out the way you thought?  I always laugh every time I see the end.  (Sorry only 360 available.) Note: The “real” mascara ad is tagged on at the end of the story.

“Senpai?”  The quintet-sized WH quintet perform this next one “Gyu”, which gives hope to all of us who were rotund, amorphous, blobs in high school.  At time 2:52, a blob is even KISSED!  Maybe there is hope for all blobs. The “school-girl” idol outfits are great, and they kill me with that “Doki, Doki” refrain.  These girls are TROUBLE!!!  “Watarirouka Hashiritai” translates as  “those who run in the corridors”.   Can you imagine that type of undisciplined behavior happening in American public schools?  Never!  America’s schools would never allow for such lax behavior as seen here.  Running in the hallways … indeed.   My favorite part comes at time 3:07: “Remember that time over at Johnny’s Place?  This chick got up and she slapped Johnny’s face …”  Enjoy (the then) seventeen-year old Mayu and the others in this joyous nostalgia.

The next video has the entire group of seven.  Mayu is center, but I always wait to see even a fleeting glimpse of the great Iwasa Misaki.  The song title translates as “Hope Mountain” (Sorry only 360 available).  They made this one a historical documentary (mock-u-mentary?) that makes it look like Japan in the 1960s.   Here the ladies make a tribute to the great 60s “girl groups”.  Love those mini-skirts, and those boots were made for walkin’.  The video shows that Japan was in transition at this time in history.  Hope-and-Change actually worked in Japan.  Many of the younger generation wanted to rapidly modernize, and make fundamental changes to a peaceful, Japanese society — others wanted to keep traditional ways.  (ex. Time 2:28 Dad can’t understand his kids. )

Of particular interest: We see what looks like the late American actor Patrick Swayze’s Japanese love child sitting at the bar at time 1:10.  Or IS THAT Patrick Swayze?   This video takes place in the same time period as his “Dirty Dancing” movie.  Pop Culture addicts will also wonder why the “Green Hornet’s” limo driver is there.   “Hope Mountain”?  … even the older generation gets it.

The last one I will share (today) begs the question — What if Mayu were the “alien” in Steven Spielberg’s “ET: The Extraterrestrial”?  The title is “Boy to Lie” (direct translation).  Mayu portrays an “alien” who accidentally lands on Earth.  A middle-school boy finds her, and takes her back to his room to nurse her back to health. They make a promise together not to tell anyone.  Of course!  What boy going through puberty would not want to secretly keep an AKB48 member in his bedroom?  (This moment reminded me of the “Thank you God” moment in National Lampoon’s “Animal House” movie.)  He is a “brainy nerd” boy, who is bullied in school.  Of course he can’t prove to anyone that he knows an alien, and must keep it a secret forever.   The alien Mayu  returns to the WH7 mothership.  (Spoiler: The boy grows up to be a famous astro-physicist and astronaut, but meets a tragic end.  Unfortunately, I could not find an English translation of what exactly happens.  I thought it was a let-down, but I could not tell what was being said.  Guess for yourself. )  Still, this is another unique music video.  Mayu is good, as always, but I loved those fleeting seconds when I could see Iwasa Misaki-san in that silver spacesuit.  Nice.

Well, it is too bad that this sub-group is no more.  They were fun.  You may still review the group’s history on their webpage:

UPDATE!! THE OFFICIAL PAGE NO LONGER EXISTS!

Later I will share some live video of the group!  Oh, you wanted to see a bikini photo! …  well I have those too!

Watarirouka Hashiritai 7: Oh, Wasamin!  (far right).

Watarirouka Hashiritai 7 Ski and Swim Team

Advertisements

Comments on: "I already miss the Watarirouka Hashiritai 7 !" (3)

  1. Notice: The “Gyu” video has been taken down, but appears to be back. I found the official YouTube post music video above but it is in much lower video quality.

    Like

  2. […] I had previously blogged about them on my post: “I already miss the WH7″ linked here. […]

    Like

  3. […] reminds me why they were always my favorite sub-unit of AKB48 (see link). The songs are so sweet, fun and cute.  I loved listening to it in the car today. It makes my […]

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s

Tag Cloud

The Millennial Merit

Perhaps they'll listen now

MPA Travels

Exploring Japan Through Pictures

Anime Girls NYC

Anime all day everyday!

Phoenix Talks Pop Culture Japan

Just one blogger taking on all of Japan's Pop Culture when she can.

JKB48

Your daily dose of Philippine Idols. News about the latest Idols around the country.

Chaula Rininta Anindya

Terrorism and Military Studies Enthusiast

IDOL Underground

The Premier English Language Site for Japanese Idol news!

sloppybuddhist

hedy bach original photography mixed stories and music

KimchiSama

Anime for the Soul

Who We Are

Photo gallery giving white-Asian women the space to express who they are in their own words

Vivacious Minegishi

Love The Way You Are

Sashikoi

Fueled by Idols

The Narrow Bamboo Gate

The Journey of a Japanese Girl

Arthifis' Place

Welcome to my place!

Yes Tiger!

Spreading our love of Japanese idols through news, music and PV reviews, group and member introductions, our experiences in Japan, translations, general ramblings, and more!

Hello!SayuNii

Morning Musume and Hello! Project Fanblog

The Flying Tofu

Japan . Travel . Food

Poke1StopShop

Your One Stop Shop for EVERYTHING Pokemon!

Moosmosis

Exploring an Arts & Sciences Education

MoeGamer

The best of overlooked and underappreciated Japanese and Japanese-inspired games

Nezu's Fanfictions

Welcome here !

The Little Mermaid

MAKING A DIFFERENCE, ONE STEP AT A TIME

High Quality Gifs

Best gifs from reddit

太郎

政治 風景 映画 芸能 有名人 ニュース 健康 医療 文化 放射能 中高年

Tokyobling's Blog

Tokyo in Photos

AmeAgari Subs

english subs

Annisha Rae

express with passion

I drink and watch anime

Anime drinking games pretending to be reviews

Insomniac Writer!!!

Poems and Stories about everything that is life...and sometimes everything is what it takes to find a better you.

The Godly Chic Diaries

Smiling • Writing • Dreaming

Japan Yabai Post

Cool stuff in Japan and Fukuoka

Video Games Nebula

Out of This World

Nitchigamer

We Value Niche Games, Obscure Games, Unique Games

Retro Gamer Ireland

Retro video game nerd with a love of nostalgia and all things gaming.

J and K Blog

J for Jpop and K for Kpop!

Writing Under The Shades of Blue

I write not just to express but to explain.

Brian Camp's Film and Anime Blog

Flash Gordon meets Cowboy Bebop at Shaolin Temple

YuriReviews and More

YuriReviews is a blog about everything yuri~

ANIME ANIMÁCIÓK

ANIMÁCIÓS GYŰJTEMÉNY KÉPEKBEN

SilentReaders

Just Readers

Kurayami Monogatari

Would love a comment every so often <<

%d bloggers like this: