Thursday, December 30, 2010

Who Are AKB48 Fans?

Who Are AKB48 Fans?

Every time AKB48 does something history making or makes a "fan service" video, the first cries you hear from anti fans are the following. ".AKB48 fans are a bunch of men old enough to be their fathers, they sale because they put out swimsuit videos for those creepy wotas." Both by the way, are untrue as is the age and make up of wotas. That however is a separate article.

If you are wondering by the way, wotas are both male and female .Are a wide range of ages and are not creepy; they are in fact very nice, very intelligent and fun to be around.
There are wotas who are industry leaders as CEO`s, members of other famous bands. Even former Prime Ministers have been known to be wotas.

AKB48`s success is not fueled by wotas anymore and has not been for sometime now. It is fueled by the most broad based fan bases of any female idol group, in the industry today.

AKB48 has managed to take the wide range fan base and reinforce it with the largest female, pre-teen, and teenage fan base of any female idol group.

This is video from the Nagoya handshake event that took place last week. Things that you will quickly notice are
A. There is a large number of female fans
B. A number of pre-teens, teens and parents
C. A number of young adults

These five videos, without any commentary from me or other media outlets, tell a very clear story as to why AKB48 are viewed by the nation as the cool group. There is no question that wotas and otakus will forever play a vital role in entertainment, yet you need be open to as many different fan bases as possible

The following by the way is the early stages of the handshake event


  1. I'm kind of 50/50 with AKB. I like them, a lot, but they also annoy me sometimes.

    It may be true that their fan base is both gendered, but at concerts, from what I can see and hear, It's mostly males. The females probably don't go to the concerts, I guess (?). I know their are some there though.

    It may be true that there are some female fans, but it's also true that AKB mainly caters to their male fan base. With many of their singles with the girls only wearing bikini's, photo books in bikini's and other "suggestive" clothing, and not to mention PV's like Heavy Rotation, (WTF was that anyway? The song was great but the PV was horrible)

    Well, I am looking forward to 2011 with AKB. While I don't love them 100%, there could definitely be something next year that could make me say "I love AKB48". I mean, they are in my top 10 favorite jpop groups, but not in my top 5. That could change, we'll have to see.

  2. When the lists of top ten most popular artists for different demographics, AKB48 only made the teen group.

    I can understand why many people will think that wearing bikinis, ect. is targeting men. Yes guys like that stuff, but women-focused do the same. Female magazines, Victoria Secret, ect. are geared towards women and wear suggestive clothing. I liked Heavy Rotation.

  3. Yanki
    AKB a few days ago was voted #2 most popular celebrity for this year for both male and female celebrities combined in any industry ,sports, film, movies , models.

    Candy, they have an all female section in their concerts both at the theater and at the bigger shows. Female idol groups main fan base has always been males that’s just how it works .It will always be more male fans for female groups

    Only three PV videos were shot in swimsuits [going off memory here.It`s 2 or 3] .Musume by the way has a non-single PV in swimsuits on one of their DVDs, Idoling!!! summer single PV was in swimsuits .Many other groups also have summer single swimsuit PV`s. Female idols have been doing that every summer since the 80`s. It`s not that big of an issue.

    Heavy Rotation
    The concept maker & director of the PV is famous female photographer/director named Ninagawa Mika. She also shot Sakuran with Tsuchiya Anna. There is also a big difference in culture. I can understand why Western fans mistake what we accept as cute, as suggestive. So I understand people had concerns with that video.

  4. @Yanki
    Victoria's secret is an underwear store though, of course you will see suggestive clothing. But when I flip through the pages of my sisters Seventeen magazine, I don't see any girls in bikini's or any suggestive clothing. Just see pretty girls wearing fashionable clothes.

    @Gaki I'm not saying that just AKB has photobooks with suggestive material. I know that Momosu and Idoling!!! do it too. In fact, almost all types of Idol groups offer some sort of fan service.

    I've been into jpop for a while, but never have I seen fan service taken as far as AKB did with Heavy Rotation. I'm sure males liked it, but for me being a female, I did not think it was cute and I thought it was very suggestive. Pony Tail to Shu Shu was fine, and so was baby baby baby, and there were wearing bikini's then. I love those songs and the PV's, and thought nothing negative. It's the girls wearing lingerie in Heavy Rotation that ticked me off.

    But I guess I'm not being fair. What If Arashi has their shirts off in a MV? Sure,their female fans would love it but their male fans would probably think it was disgusting. If I think about AKB in that situation, I guess I can understand your point.

    AKB fans get really defense over anybody that has something "not nice" to say. Really, I'm not trying to be mean. I really do like AKB, it's not like I posted a hate post or anything like that. There are things that bother me in EVERY jpop group, not just AKB. I'm not trying to single them out and was only expressing my opinion.

    But then again, so do I. When someone says something about a group I like, I to will sit here and type a long explanation of why their wrong.

  5. @ Candy
    LOL. true though. I've been into jpop for 4 years going on 5 in the next two month's. and at first their videos were weird and and funny but nowadays most pv's include some kind of fan service... mostly dedicated too men. and not to offend anyone (not my intention) but Heavy Rotation was way too much..especially them kissing each other. It was cute in some parts but it went way too far. but not only akb48 but also momoiri clover.. their ice-cream pv was too mature for their age. we'll see how 2011 goes for idol pv's.

  6. i don't like their pv's full of fan service but good thing the previews do exist so i just avoid them... music isn't bad but certainly i'm starting to wonder how much more "insertletters"48 related groups can exists in Japan.

    oh well... haters gonna hate

  7. @ Candy
    Just so you know,
    I was not trying to single your post out or anything .If you felt that way I am sorry. I was just commenting on the things you pointed out. So again, if I made you feel uncomfortable in any way I am sorry. That was not what I wanted to happen. As I took your comments, more as asking questions to me.

    Oh by the way, do not ever feel bad about having concerns with fan service videos.
    This genre is not easy, there are good things and bad things and sometimes groups push the fan service over the line.

    Outside of this site, I am involved in music and there are things about this industry that I dislike, yet have to accept as well.

    @ Sura
    There maybe even more 48`s all this year was strong talk of 48`s in every major city and the crazy idea of 48`s in L.A., NYC and Paris. There are even other groups in other cities following the same formula as regional idols.

    Akihabara based or influenced groups are just very hot right now .Passpo maybe the next to breakout in 2011. There is something about that group and Afilia that is hard to turn away from.

  8. @Gaki
    No! You don't have to apologize at all! I didn't think that I was ever being singled out on anything, sorry to create a misunderstanding. It's okay to point out things that I post, I just get a little to "worked up" when I'm on the internet. I can get a little snappy and rude. And I don't mean to be that way either...

    I don't have any problems with AKB48 except their Heavy Rotation video, but that's in the past.

    Yes, I am seeing a lot of 48 groups. SKE48 just started last year, and I love them already. 48's in America and Europe too?! Wow, I've never heard of anything like that before.

    So many groups debuted this year, SUPER GIRLS, Tokyo Girls' Style, Passpo, Sakura Gakuin, (I'm sure there are lots more)

    Yes, Momoiro Clover and their "Kimi no Sekai" video, UGH and them licking ice cream the WHOLE time that was just... what were they thinking? And it's too bad, the song is wonderful and catchy, but ruined by that video. I hope they never have anything like that again. I love Momoiro Clover, and how their fun and wild.

  9. I became a fan just because i saw the type-b cover of heavy rotatin and the PV. because i thought the photos were so good and the pv just amazingly cute!!
    and i have my k-pop boys to drool over. AKB is something else for me and i'm a teenage girl.

  10. @ Candy,

    OK just making sure. Glad everything was alright .

    48 international expansions were on a program after the L.A. trip, I do not expect much from it.
    NMB48 in Osaka makes their formal debut in January; I would not be surprised if in the next two years at least one more 48 is created .Maybe in Northern Japan. Nothing is for sure about that, just a feeling.

    I do not think they will enter Fukuoka; Hakata Reboot has that city, doing the same theater set up as AKB48.

    This is Hakata Reboot
    At the time of this filming of their debut stage, they didn`t have any original songs so they performed AKB and H!P songs . So it was more like watching an AKB Cover group.

    Oh the Clover Ice Cream PV was one of those unneeded fan services .Takes a lot away from the song ,just as the circus tent costumes that H!P likes to use .

  11. if AKB48 did not dress in high school girl uniforms and produce fanservice crap like their PV for Heavy Rotation, then they could actually be less than half-bad.

  12. might i add the word "skimpy" to the high school girl uniforms.

  13. I'm an 18 year old girl and I love AKB48. I also love H!P. Oh, and just to be reeeally controversial, I also love k-pop.
    Sometimes, you'd think that my existence was impossible if you read some articles about fandom wars or AKB48's demographic. I'm glad that the demographic issue was addressed here because it is bothersome to have people assume that you're a little kid or an old man because you enjoy AKB48. Sure, I'm not a fan of everything they do but then I feel that way about any group I support. There will always be arguments over costumes and music videos and gravure, but at the end of the day if the music makes me happy I'm really not interested. I wouldn't presume to come down like a ton of bricks on anyone else's idols because at the end of the day, your iPod isn't my business.

  14. can you people please get better taste in music


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