Friday, 31 January 2014

Wake Up, Girls! - Episode 4

Mayu's return to the idol business may be a cause of celebration for some, but to most - or at least those participating in online discussion - her departure from I-1 Club, and perhaps more importantly the stories behind it, is unforgivable.

While things continue to progress for the Wake Up Girls themselves with the offer of a regular, named slot on a radio show (albeit at midnight), others have taken notice of the confirmation of Mayu's return to idol work - namely a journalist who spies a clear opportunity to dish the dirt on the truth behind her departure.  On top of the attitude of her mother towards her return to being an idol, life clearly isn't easy for the Wake Up Girls' star player.

As we gain a glimpse into the reality of the I-1 Club's dream machine - hard training, no right of reply for idols, and girls being dropped and replaced with fresh-faced young talent on a weekly basis as they prepare for their tour of Japan - so Tange's fervour grows markedly as she receives a call from a journalist in Tokyo looking to feature the group in a documentary.  Of course, unbeknownst to her, his real goal is an opportunity to press Mayu on the truth behind her quitting I-1 Club, which in turn only raises more questions amongst her friends as to what the real deal is here.

It's certainly nice to see Wake Up, Girls pressing this particular line of its narrative, as it's clearly one that's easy to relate to in regards to the actual idol industry and it seems to have a lot of potential to go places.  That said, there wasn't a whole lot to make this effort stand out - the episode perhaps tried a little too hard to demonise I-1 Club's leadership, and the show as a whole still suffers from a complete lack of any strong characters to speak of.  Mayu's secrets can only push the series forward so far, and if they aren't revealed soon then I fear it may turn into an exercise in flogging a dead horse - we shall see what transpires next week, of course.

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