This weekend the Gakuen tour rolled into Chiba for three consecutive days and as I live in Chiba, it would have been rude not to go to all three, right?
I've already done a big in-depth report on the tour here
so I won't do that again. This is just news and notes.
The 14th, Saturday, was filmed for the upcoming DVD. Sunday had more people there, but Saturday was a good choice. It was mainly good because on Saturday, me and my friends had seats on the far left of row 28 but when we got there, our seats were missing and instead the overhead cameras were there! So, we got moved to row 14 and were more central.
So... [DVD spoilers]
They made a few changes for the DVD. When F9 do their MOON SAGA variety show, they usually re-enact two fight scenes out of three that they have prepared
1. Tomoe (Sato) vs. Soldiers (Wang & EGA)
2. Yoshitsune (Hayato) vs. Yoshinaka (Takumi)
3. Hiyori (YOU) vs. Sabirou (Val)
but on Saturday they performed all three, so all three should be on the DVD. The fight scenes all have happy endings instead of people dying and they really drove home the happy endings on Saturday and I think they all ended with some variation on GACKT's incessant "we're all family!!!" speeches.
For the part where they have to remember one of Yoshinaka's speeches, it's usually either team 1 (Takumi, Taya, Val and EGA) or Team 2 (YOU, Sato, Hayato and Wang) that is chosen. On Saturday, they ignored the teams and chose YOU, Takumi, Sato and Val (hahaha, the A-Team of this year's Gakuen).
YOU kept doing Funasshi impressions throughout the variety part while dressed as Hiyori, so he was jumping around a lot and ending his sentences with "nasshi!" (Funasshi is the unofficial mascot of the city Funabashi, in Chiba, and he's become very popular recently.
A few things went wrong during the show.
The dance routine for Jounetsu no Inazuma is a little complicated without the screen to help. The chorus line has three different arm actions that are done in order - 1, 2, 3. During one of the chorus lines Kaicho got his actions wrong and skipped #2, so he ended up doing #3 twice - 1, 3, 3. It was really noticeable! He's got this dance wrong at most of the shows so far, but not in such an obvious way.
During the Big Bang song, Taya lost his wig. I don't know exactly what happened as I was too busy staring at Kaicho but when I looked over Taya was on the floor and missing his wig. He carried on with the song and was smiling broadly. It was cute! He came out without the wig for the next song too, Gangnam Style, as I guess there was no time to refit the wig. Instead Taya let his hair down so it still worked!
And finally, for the Hikaru Genji song.... Since the first day Kaicho has not looked entirely comfortable on those rollerskates. He nearly fell on the first day in Osaka and I noticed in Nagoya that at one point when he skated to the side of the stage, Taya was standing there with his arm outstretched to stop Kaicho in case he went too far. During the recording the inevitable happened and Kaicho fell. I think what happened was that there is a move where they go to one knee, and I think his foot just slipped and instead of going to one knee gracefully and with control, he just fell. They have to keep that in!
On Sunday, the Yoshitsune vs. Yoshinaka fight ended a little differently to the previous performances of it. Instead of the two just being friends at the end, they acted out this big romantic scene that ended with them hugging and Takumi dipping Hayato and (pretending) to kiss him. Shinnosu asked Tomoe (Sato) what she thought about her boyfriend and admirer having a thing together and Tomoe replied that boy's love is good. Then later, during the K-POP section, Takumi smacked Sato on the ass. I'm starting to worry about that boy. Taya has started molesting Kaicho too at the end of the BIG BANG song (although that didn't happen during the DVD filming, sorry!)
The venue at Chiba is bigger than Osaka or Nagoya and by this time everyone knew about the senpais serving food before the show started so the queues were huge. On Saturday it was all nice and orderly. The people who wanted YOU queued on the far left for his udon. Everyone else filed into lines for the other senpais. But then, YOU served the pudding (I think) which was on the right, so everyone in the left queue just pushed through the crowd to get to him. It got a little rough in there...
On Saturday there was no queuing, it was just a mass of bodies. That was even worse. About 20 girls ended up on the floor, people were being pushed into barricades and benches and there was a little bit of blood (skinned knees mainly). By Sunday they'd finally organised it all.
On Friday I got oden from Takumi and he was so much chattier than when I got food from him in Osaka! This was how our conversation started...
Takumi : Gokigenyou! (shakes my hand)
Me : Gokigenyou! (in Japanese) I'm looking forward to today's show
Takumi : "Looking forward to today's show..." Ah! You speak Japanese??
The way he repeated what I said to him was so cute... as if he needed a couple of extra seconds to process that he really had heard Japanese. My friend had gone ahead of me and said to him that she didn't speak any Japanese so he probably wasn't expecting it. He asked me where was I from and stuff and shook my hand a second time as I left.
On Saturday we battled through the crowds and got udon from YOU. Again, I told him I was looking forward to the show and his eyes widened and he did that cute little "oh!" sound and mouth action he does when he's surprised in the Platinum Boxes. He said something in English before I left but I didn't catch it.
Sunday was oden from Shinnosu (I really like the oden). I wished him luck in doing something during the variety section and he replied "arigato.... THANK YOU!! Thank you!!"
Ahhhhhh, they're all so cute when you surprise them with Japanese.
On Saturday me and two friends wore AKB inspired school uniforms to the show. There may have been questionable poses done with the cut out of Kaicho, YOU and Takumi. We entertained the fans that were around at the time at least XD
Now there's only Sendai left. I'm looking forward to it (despite the possibility of snow) but it's also sad as it's the last show.