Now … on to #95:
Aoiro 7 – Aoi Sports Car no Otoko (2000)
Tsunku / Tsunku / Matsubara Ken / zetima
An amusing and innovative PV from one of the first shuffle groups. I’m not sure I have much to say about this one, but the shots of Makoto toking up on a joint are totally random.
℃-ute – Tokaikko Junjou (2007)
Tsunku / Tsunku / Hirata Shouichirou / zetima
OK, some of you will hate me for putting this one so low on the ranking, but honestly, I’ve just never been able to get into ℃-ute. I’ve tried many a time to enjoy their music, and except for a couple of mildly enjoyable tracks, they’ve generally failed to capture my interest. I don’t know what it is that makes me love Berryz with such passionate fervor but makes me react to ℃-ute with rabid indifference.
As for “Tokaikko Junjou”, it’s certainly a refreshing change from their earlier work, but I haven’t found it especially notable. And the PV is also rather boring, except for the part where Maimi throws Chisato’s ball off into the distance and it explodes in a line of light. This is interesting, but I’m not sure what it has do with anything.
Tanpopo – Oujisama to Yuki no Yoru (2001)
Tsunku / Tsunku / Nagai Rui / zetima
Poignantly charming video from back in the day. I particularly like the interior rotating camera shots. And the whole thing just gives off an aura of warm and fuzzy winter-holiday goodness.
Abe Natsumi – The Stress (2006)
Moritaka Chisato / Saito Hideo / Ueno Keiichi / hachama
Quirky video about revelations, relativity, and the irrelevance of time. Or something like that.
Melon Kinenbi – Natsu no Yoru wa Danger! (2002)
Tsunku / Tsunku / ab:fly, Kohno Shin / zetima
Four strangers find their lives mysteriously drawn together by the sudden appearance of a bike-riding apparition. The metaphorical significance of the kid is tantalizing, but purposefully ambiguous. Is this a symbol of the intersection of our protagonists’ shared past, a reflection of some common event that took place when the four were together but has since been forgotten by them as they proceed with their separate lives? Or is the kid a symbol of the ephemeral nature of life? What’s here in any given moment may soon disappear, without warning. A human embodiment of God, portrayed as simultaneously youthful and ageless? And also perhaps an outward manifestation of the inner souls of all four characters, intentionally abstracted across gender and ethnicity lines to imply its universal relevance to the human experience?
The theme of cycles plays into this PV as well. We see alternating views of night and day; the waves roll in and out; the setting is summer, but fall is not far behind. Life itself, which underlies every shot, is cyclical in nature as well. The waves also bring to mind Virginia Woolf’s novel The Waves, a poetic examination of the momentary occurrences that bring people together ever so briefly over the course of their lives.
And the bicycle? This pretty much sums up the cyclical theme of this video. And in light of my previous cursory examination of the philosophical significance of the train, the bicycle
plays a sharp counterpoint. While a train carries us by its own power but never wavers from the tracks set before it, a bicycle gives us freedom to take ourselves in any direction we choose, though we must provide our own energy to guide it … and yet, when handled properly, a bicycle is nevertheless capable of the graceful movement performed by a track-bound locomotive.
A simple yet highly effective video.
And once again, I find myself physically incapable of putting out a post shorter than 500 words…