Posted in Commentary, TV Program

Ohno on THE Yakai

Arashi is a group of five; i like each of them individually but i love them together. My next favorite thing is probably seeing them as pairs, regardless of the combination. Besides the two regular TV programs done by all five, there are a number of shows they host as individuals. That’s why even though i may not watch or follow those solo shows regularly, i’ll never miss the episode visited by another member.

I’ve been wishing for cross-appearance on whoever corner on Shiyagare and was thrilled to see Junba and Ohmiya collaborations for the recent The Music Day. Well, i was even happy with Sho popping up on whim to Nino-san‘s set, which got caught on camera for like a couple of seconds. So imagine my excitement when we get two (or more) of them for a full episode. The latest instance is Ohno guesting on Sakurai-Ariyoshi THE Yakai.

I thought Jun guesting on the show was the most highly anticipated appearance, and while i don’t think Ohno exceeded the buzz despite being the last member to appear on it, i think i enjoyed his turn best. Most of the appeal lies in the content (Aiba and Nino came over when the show was still called Abunai Yakai which had a slightly different format, i guess?) and interactions. His ‘wish’ is interesting to watch, his ‘complaints’ are epic, and his chemistry with Sho is unrivaled — them having such an easy, chill, warm chemistry is the charm of Yama combi — although i already love the very first few milliseconds following the reveal, when he’s slightly taken aback by the swinging door. Hee.

It’s been four years since Sakurai-Ariyoshi tandem, and that’s around the same time since Ohno’s last visit to TBS. So much so that he no longer remembers where the gents is.

The segment opens with his “netsubou”: to go on an incognito trip to buy a present for his close friend, Ueshima Ryuhei. For which he went to Harajuku’s Takeshita-dori. This mission reminds me so much of Sho’s Oshinobi Ryokou corner, especially when filmed with similar style, sequence, and rules. It all begins with choosing the camouflage, from props to accessories to wigs. The look he’s settling for: street musician style donning a guitar, straw hat, vintage sunnies, and fake beard, replete with an underbite.

Although he’s confident no one will recognize him in such coordination (the filming’s over if someone did), Yakai takes precautionary measures anyway — Oh-chan is the leader of a national idol group after all — by planting 20 staff along the way to either film him or rescue him in case a hoo-ha occurs. Halfway to the destination, he spots a crêpe shop and decides to stop by. A throwback to Satoko-chan walking around Shibuya in 2013 Shiyagare’s New Year Special, anyone? Riida has gone from buying crêpe for the first time to being Arashi’s unofficial sweets buchou in four years.

 

His display of suspicious behavior peaks inside the store. He keeps touching his goatee, avoiding any kind of eye contact, and most hilariously, peeking through the top of his sunglasses while cupping his face to check the caps’ colors. LMAO. He’s unwilling to take off his sunnies but eventually remove his hat to flip-try the cap on Ueshima Ryuhei-style. Which is around the time a group of school girls huddles near him and throws surreptitious glances his way. Uh-oh.

Despite being nearly busted, he feels a lot at ease after securing the present and decides to peel off the goatee, then his sunnies (“Hora, barenai jan. Nandayo!”), and eventually his hat too, walking casually like that. He even goes around greeting people, as if asking to be called out. It’s not long before the coveted kyaa~ is finally heard. They make a quick escape, but the scene left a huge grin on Ohno’s face. As expected, it feels good to be busted, huh? ^^

Back to the studio, the barrage of complaints begins. People have been calling him weird, Ohno says, but in his opinion, the other four aren’t any less weird. The cases in point:

  1. Nino and the disappearing choreo for their latest song incident. Wherein Nino, knowing Ohno was in the studio to choreograph Tsunagu, sent him a link to a certain interesting fishing video, which totally worked in distracting him and pushing him into the YouTube black hole that is related videos and hence made him forget the moves he’d come up with.
  2. Aiba and the Aiba-Soba incident. Some time in 2012, there’s this soba from TBS cafeteria that he was into. One day, he ate three servings within a short span of time that he felt sick at the end of the day. When asked why he ate so much of it, his answer is: he felt obligated to since it’s named after him. At which Sho says the case should be called “Aiba baka incident” instead. LOL
  3. Jun and the tearful hug in Hawaii incident. Which is basically continuation of Juntoshi-crashing-into-Sho’s-room-in-the-middle-of-Yakai-filming episode. Ohno confirms that both were tipsy then but continued drinking in his room when Jun suddenly burst into tears and they ended up hug-crying. Drunk-Jun episodes are always interesting.
  4. Sho and the rehearsal’s black bandana incident. It’s the headband Sho donned in Ayuhapi, which according to Ohno is so tacky, especially worn under black hair. Sho defends himself by dropping the info that made fans go wild (me included): Nino has the same headband; he in fact asked where Nino bought his grey-striped headband and got his in different color(!!). But since Ohno doesn’t find Nino’s tacky, Sho deduces that whether or not something is fashionable depends not on the item itself but on who wears it. Pfftt.

The last thing Ohno wants to say is Arashi’s leader isn’t him, really. He shares that he was duped by a certain someone and it’s been bugging him for 18 years. This brings up the classic clip of leader-deciding janken between Yama. As we all know, Ohno was appointed the leader after winning the one-round match. He may blame Sho’s quick thinking to turn the tables, which was impressive indeed, but everybody agreed it was him. They didn’t specify whether the winner or loser would take the crown, but the moment Ohno won, Nino exclaimed, “Oh-chan da!” before Sho’s alleged trap. Even Higashiyama-senpai affirmed that the winner WAS the leader.

Regardless, Ohno remains dissatisfied with the result that he asks for a rematch. In the end, they agree to let Ohno settle the one-sided dispute once and for all. A history-changing one, ’cause who knows after 18 years, Arashi will be led by another member? Following the same rule, Yama ready their hand, looking a lot tenser than their pre-debut(?) version. Despite showing a different hand, Ohno still wins. It takes them a few seconds before the result sinks in and Sho repeats his move. Ariyoshi was like, “Why are you so strong at janken?!”, but it shows that Ohno is just destined to be Arashi’s leader. Arashi is Arashi because of them five, and the dynamics wouldn’t be the same if he weren’t the leader.

All in all, this is such an engaging episode. Every bit is discussion-worthy; every moment is screencap-able. You just gotta watch it to see Ohno’s priceless reenactments of the member in question. Also for chatty, energetic, expressive Ohno. This isn’t the kind of Ohno we usually see on TV, and i love this side he brings out during Shinobi no Kuni promo (like in recent Tsukutte Miyou segment on Shiyagare, VS Arashi, and Pittanko Kan Kan program. It helps that the SatoshixSatomi interaction flows naturally and is fun to watch). Although in the end, it looks as though Ohno came on the show to vent out, cuz really, all he did was mostly bitching about his costar and bandmates. Haha.

But for me, the main takeaway is the fact that Sakumiya own the same headband. Not similar, but the same. Fans have figured out that Nino’s is from MUJI and doubted that Sho’s is from the same line, but turns out it is? There’s only three colors available in my country — pink, grey, and black — and if Sho doesn’t want to wear matching headband with Nino, it’s only natural that he got the black one. Or rather, Nino GOT him that, it seems?

Lastly, i’m on the camp that thinks Sho looked hot in that headband. I don’t think his fashion in general is bad either. If anything, i’m amused to note the division between the members themselves: there’s NinoAi who’s frustrated with the “dasai dasai” label put on him and thus bought him a set of camo get-up to overturn that image, and then there’s Ohno who openly said Sho’s fashion sense is dasai. Heh. So, which side are you on, Matsujun? 😏

_
p.s.
Is the part about Ohno trying the VR machine edited out from the episode or is it part of Yakai’s promo?

Disclaimer: i’m not fluent in Japanese, so pardon any mistakes. I’m not covering everything, either, but i’m sure this episode will be subbed. It’s too good not to.

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