In lieu of the sentencing for the attempted murder of Tomita Mayu‘s assailant, many on the J-pop side of fandom are talking about how, sadly, often attacks on idols are. For example, back in 2014, two members of the super idol group AKB48 were attacked by a saw-wielding man at a handshake event. Most of the time, people expect the worst from these wota anyway. I mean, their crazed devotion is a main reason they’re looked so down upon (besides the fact they’re usually middle-aged men fawning over barely legal girls in cute outfits). However, these violent attacks are something beyond the norm for even them, and because of certain issues Japan has regarding stalking and how the police react to it (especially in this case), this has gotten everyone’s attention. Unfortunately, that also means every idiot has an opinion.
Cue resident idiot opinion-haver anime director Yamamoto “Yamakan” Yutaka (‘The Melancholy Of Haruhi Suzumiya’, ‘Fractale’, ‘Wake Up Girls!’), who had some shitty things to say about the Tomita Mayu situation.
“The assailant deserves no mercy. He should be left in jail for life. But, I’ve got to say that it’s not like the victim didn’t make any mistake. In my conversation with the people familiar with that side of business, they’re all in agreement that she “was too careless” in the whole chain of events. First, idol-ling (or similar activities) requires the person to display great tact when refusing/declining things from their fans/supporters. One can’t help but getting ideas when their present got returned. Or rather, one had to wonder if her agency could have done a better job at handling this stuff for her.”
In addition to somehow shifting the focus to blaming Tomita, Yamamoto went on to say that he’d fight back in a similar situation. Of course, not only is it ridiculous to expect a victim to have somehow fought off an armed assailant of superior size and strength that ambushes them, it’s also easy for him to say all this when no one gives a shit about him and he just has unwarranted self-importance.
Yamamoto’s position is more ironic when you think about the fact that anime ‘Wake Up Girls!‘ is about idols in a realistic setting not all that much unlike Tomita Mayu’s.
On Christmas 2013, the band Wake Up, Girls plays their debut song to a small audience without much fanfare. After the concert, the group’s manager takes off with the money, leaving Green Leaves Entertainment on the verge of closure and the band without a future. Despite this tumultuous beginning, the girls get a second chance, thanks to a mysterious benefactor and a shady business proposal. From here, it’s a rocky climb to the top, but it’s a climb the girls are ready to take. Wake Up, Girls! follows the internal and external struggles a small-time idol girl band, from finding and accepting gigs to competing in popularity against other pop bands. Through the band, the girls come to accept their pasts and become more certain about their futures. Faced with increasing stakes and popularity, each of the band’s seven members must find the strength and courage inside herself to give her all to the band.
I’m truly grateful he cares more about the 2D idols than 3D ones, because it’s clear he doesn’t give a shit about the living ones and I truly feel sorry for any woman in his life. Did he not pay attention to his own anime or did he just want to get his check from the latest ‘Haruhi’ spin-off and whine about how anime is dead?
If you look around forums, you can see people defending his victim blaming or that it’s the “Japanese way” that both parties should apologize but … what kind of stupid logic is that? Japan has a huge problem with unreported stalking as it is — and this is even worse since it WAS reported — so pieces of shit like Yamamoto make it harder for victims to report such crimes. I mean if a stalking victim that almost got stabbed to death is still being blamed for her role in it, why would others expect help or justice? Therefore, he can go fuck himself and maybe give ‘Wake Up Girls!’ a rewatch so he can be reminded of what his own fictional idols dealt with so he can have empathy for real ones.
Oh yeah, as all of that is going on, 81Produce, a voice talent company who plays agent to familiar names like Eguchi Takuya (‘My Love’s Story!’, ‘Re:Zero’) and Hatano Wateru (‘ReLIFE’, ‘STARMYU’), had to put out a request to the fans of voice actors. The request basically stated that they should stop being fucking creepy as hell by doing things like waiting on voice actors as they leave or enter the buildings, following them to the bathrooms, and taking pictures/recording of them in public without expressed permission. According to them, such unruly behavior not only causes trouble for regular people and the surrounding area, but it’ll probably cause incidents that can get out of hand very quickly. You know, to maybe avoid what just happened with Tomita. Unfortunately, it took an idol nearly dying because of a real piece of shit for some to at least start wising up a bit to the potential danger.
In the end, though, we can’t ignore the fact that the police failed big time and they need to bear the burden of what Tomita has lost in her life. Their current lip service apologies gives the aura that they care somewhat, but as far as anybody can tell, nothing has actually changed with the police so far. Idols and celebrities shouldn’t have to hire fucking mercenaries or have to learn MMA themselves to prevent these attacks. Instead, when reported, the fucking cops should, I don’t know, do their fucking jobs and take care of the stalking problem before it escalates to something like this again.