Saturday, June 6, 2015

2015 Election Results + Reactions (part 1)

Guess what? I woke up this morning at 3:30 am (after having gone to bed at 12:30 am) and didn't go back to bed until 8:30 am. Why? I wanted to watch the AKB48 election live! I voted this year more than I have any other year and I wanted to see how my favs would do (both those that I did vote for and those girls who I didn't have enough funds to vote for but still support). This year, I split my votes 4 ways; I joined a campaign for Watanabe Mayu and one for Tano Yuka. For Watanabe Mayu, my donation bought roughly 5 votes for her. For Tano Yuka, my donation bought about 1.5 votes for her. For the final two members I voted for, I used a proxy service. I sent money to a member of the Stage48 forum that was in Japan during the election voting period and he bought the votes for me at a super cheap price ($9 a vote! Had I bought the CD's from my go-to place, YesAsia, the votes would have been about $18 each. So by using the proxy service, I got two votes for the price of what would normally be 1.) In return, my proxy buyer got to use the handshake ticket that came with the CD to meet one of the girls (something that I wouldn't have been able to use anyway since I'm way over here in the U.S. so it's a win-win situation) This was one of my best decisions this year because I was able to buy 10 votes. My proxy buyer took a picture of the voting codes and sent them to me through email. I inputted the codes and voila! I had voted for two girls. I sent 8 of the 10 votes for my favorite member - Yokoyama Yui. I sent the final two votes in for my favorite NMB48 member Watanabe Miyuki.

Before I get into results and reactions, let me just make something clear - I like a lot of the girls of the 48 groups. I wouldn't go so far to say that I like them all because there are a few I hardly care for and only one girl so far that I really dislike. However, for the most part, I like and support a lot of the members. In past elections, I have spared a vote for my favorite SKE48 member Matsui Rena. Since she decided not to participate this year, I decided not to vote for an SKE48 member, even though I do have a 2nd favorite, Kitagawa Ryoha. The reason why I didn't vote for Ryoha was simple; I know it's not her time to shine yet. I do plan to vote for her next year though! My favorite HKT48 member is most likely Tashima Meru. I say most likely because to be quite honest, I haven't been able to focus on only one single member in HKT. I really like Kodama Haruka and I was sure she was my favorite in the group, but lately, I have more interest in Meru. I didn't vote for Meru though because I have not declared her as my absolute favorite yet. So, since I'm not sure on HKT, I didn't vote for anyone. Finally, I voted for my favorite NMB member, but instead of voting only for Yui in AKB, I also voted for my second and third favorite members. Why? Well, I felt like Watanabe Mayu needed my votes. I was really worried that her vote count would drop and in return, her rank would drop significantly. Tano Yuka is another girl I felt just needed it. She dropped last year and so did her vote count so I definitely wanted to contribute at least a little to having it increase. :)

So what were my goals this year for my favorite? Well, I wanted Ryoha to rank. I didn't really care how low, as long as she entered the ranking. I decided that next year I will focus on voting for her so that she can climb the ranks, but I would be satisfied to just so her enter the rankings this year. For Tano Yuka, I wanted her to enter Under Girls, ranking at about #32. For Watanabe Miyuki, I wanted her back in the top 16. Preferably around #12 or #11, but as long as she entered top 16. For Yokoyama Yui, my aim was to get her out of the #13 spot and move up. #10 was realistic for me, but if she could get a single digit rank, I would be ecstatic! And for Watanabe Mayu, I wanted her to win #1 again. If she couldn't do it, I didn't want her to fall any more than the #3 spot. If Mayu didn't win, my next choice for winner would be Kashiwagi Yuki. In terms of other girls I like but didn't vote for, I wanted Takayanagi Akane in the top 16, Kato Rena, Kojima Mako and Okada Nana in Under Girls and for Souda Sarina and Nishino Miki to rank.

To make it easier, I placed the girl I thought would rank in a certain post spot on the right and right afterward is the name of the girl who actually ranked in the spot:


#32 Tano Yuka ------------------------------------------------------------> #32 Tashima Meru
I was really happy to see Meru in Undergirls, despite her being lower than I hoped. Alas, Tano did not make it to Undergirls. While her vote count increased she fell two spots to #47. *sigh* I suppose I will have to try harder next year.

#31 Minegishi Minami ----------------------------------------------------> #31 Fuchigami Mai
I don't dislike Mai, but I honestly really don't care much for her. I don't really care much for Minegishi Minami either. *shrug*

#30 Kojima Mako ----------------------------------------------------------> #30 Takajo Aki
I honestly thought Takajo Aki would drop into the 50's or so. Nice to see that she's still hanging on in Undergirls. Seems her prime has passed though :/

#29 Furuhata Nao ----------------------------------------------------------> #29 Okada Nana
Nacchan is 3 spots lower than what I wanted her to be, but yay she is in Undergirls! I love her rank, now to go up from here~

#28 Mukaichi Mion --------------------------------------------------------> #28 Kato Rena
Mukaichi placed in the 40's, so lower than I was expecting but I wasn't being super realistic by putting her in Undergirls. I love that Kato Rena rose in rank, although I was hoping her to rise further.

#27 Tomonaga Mio --------------------------------------------------------> #27 Oba Mina 
I never would have foreseen Minarun making it so high up, but it seems her transfer to SKE48 and status as leader has really helped her!

#26 Okada Nana -----------------------------------------------------------> #26 Kojima Mako
Kojimako ranks into Undergirls! She's higher than I expected her to be but I like her, so I'm super happy to see her here :)

#25 Tashima Meru --------------------------------------------------------> #25 Takahashi Juri 
Juri is lower than I expected but I'm just happy she climbed some ranks as well! Hopefully she starts getting more promotion just like Kato Rena.

#24 Anai Chihiro ----------------------------------------------------------> #24 Furuhata Nao
Nao ranks higher than I expected her too, but Nao is awesome, so no complaints from me! Chihiro ranked #33 - so close to being in Undergirls!

#23 Futamura Haruka -----------------------------------------------------> #23 Tani Marika
I thought I knew how SKE fans voted but I seriously have no idea. I don't really know Haruka much, but she still ranked pretty well. Tani has me scratching my head. I'm super glad she's not top 16 though because I do find her somewhat annoying. However, this is a huge jump so congrats to her.

#22 Moriyasu Madoka ----------------------------------------------------> #22 Kizaki Yuria
It seems Yuria is stuck in the 22-23 spots; she just can't seem to rise. I really expected her to rank up. This must have been devastating to her. I like Yuria most of the time, but sometimes, she looks like she really doesn't want to be on stage or is bored and it can be off-putting. Madoka dropped in ranking so that was a surprise. I really did not think she would drop at all. I don't particularly like Madoka, but I suppose I overestimated her popularity.

#21 Takahashi Juri --------------------------------------------------------> #21 Tomonaga Mio
Mio. What to say about Mio? I don't get her appeal at all. In fact, she's the one member I openly say I dislike. I didn't mind her at first, but watching more shows with her she just came off as a huge spoiled brat that tries to rely on being "cute" to make up for her lack of dancing, singing or personality skills. Yes, I am salty that she rose. I wanted her to rank down. First big disappointment in this election.

#20 Kato Rena -------------------------------------------------------------> #20 Oya Masana
Huge jump for Masana. I like this girl. She is so self-aware that she is not athletic at all and sucks at a lot of things, but is willing to laugh at herself. :) I like her laid back personality.

#19 Muto Tomu -----------------------------------------------------------> #19 Minegishi Minami
Eh. Don't really care much for this rank....

#18 Kizaki Yuria ----------------------------------------------------------> #18 Suda Akari
Ok. SHOCKER. I never expected Akarin to drop from #10 to #18. I was so sure she was a lock for top 16 since she has such passionate fans. Poor girl was absolutely devastated. I don't particularly like Akarin; in fact, I find her annoying as well, but she works really hard all the time and gives 100% in performances. I won't deny that she did not deserve to drop so far.

#17 Kitahara Rie ----------------------------------------------------------> #17 Kodama Haruka
Poor Haruppi was crying so hard. She was so so so close to top 16. I really wanted her in top 16 myself, but it just didn't happen this year. Maybe next year her fans can make that final push and have her break into senbatsu. For now though, she remains in Undergirls. 2nd big disappointment of this election.

This post is really long already, so I will be posting my reactions to the overall election and the top 16 spots in a separate post :)

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