I have never been happier and prouder to be in the Johnnys fandom than I am now.
Some of you may be confused by this statement: Jin Akanishi left KAT-TUN about a year and a half ago, NEWS just lost Yamapi and Ryo, Johnnys is debuting a group that is so young called “Sexy Zone” and breaking down Junior groups in the process, as well as lots of Juniors leaving or being asked to leave and many more things that have disappointed many people in the fandom,
What do I see in this? Amazing change! It shows that people in Johnnys are no longer just robots, like I used to think, and that they are changing to fit the times. They are being truer to themselves and wanting to give their all in something that they love, rather than 50% to something that they don’t love.
I had a long talk with a new foreign Johnnys fan from England here at my university last night about various things. The topic of Jin Akanishi and Yamapi leaving their groups to go solo came up. I wanted to hear the opinion of a Jin Akanishi fan and also what she thought about Yamapi leaving NEWS. After talking for a while, we came up with some conclusions. To sum it up, basically they wanted to be true to themselves without the restrictions of the groups image. People might think that this is selfish, but I don’t think so. Think about it from their perspective, they no longer have a “home” to go back to or have the crutch of the group to lean on anymore. All of the focus is on them and not 6 people, though they were the golden boys of their groups. Also, they got a taste of the solo scene and realized that by making their own music they were being truer to themselves. At the same time though, they get much more critizim. Once again, I think it is brave for them to do this because they get the full force of everyone’s attention and criticism.
Also, I think it takes a lot of courage to say “I am sorry. All of you have supported me and gave me a home for so long, but its time for me to move on and start another chapter of my life.” I believe this because people change over time. Their love for the group or the members may not have changed, but their personal taste might have changed and clashed with the image that the group had, thus not making them happy. Actually, I have heard that your way of thinking changes every 5 years. I am not sure if that is true though.
I also think that it is showing their support for the group or their love for the group by leaving them. If they are not giving 100% to the group and not being true to themselves, they are only holding themselves and the rest of the group back. At that time, it is better to separate for the good of everyone involved. This includes Ryo leaving too. I bet he felt that he wasn’t giving 100% to the groups and that he felt bad for holding any of his 2 groups back.
I see many amazing opportunities from these changes that Johnnys has implemented recently. I have actually never been more impressed at what Johnnys has released than right now in 2011 (at least in the groups that I follow, and a few others that I don’t really follow). I think it is all thanks to growing, changing, and maturity. The Japanese are famous for Kaizen, constant change or constant improvement. Maybe Johnnys is finally embracing that.
To conclude, don’t think of something at face value and don’t reject change straight away. Dig deeper to see the oppertunities that come out of it. We don’t know the whole story either, so all we can do at this point is to sit back and see what happens while hoping for the best!
I look forward to many more opportunities and surprises from Johnnys in the coming years. I hope you all will follow me in thinking about the positives that change can bring!