In the world of Japanese idols, members in a group are not necessarily a permanent members. They join and graduate, either forcefully by management or to pursue other career outside the group. A few weeks back, my favourite member of AKB48, Satou Amina, announced her graduation to pursue a voice acting career. She became my favourite member (or “oshimen” in otaku speak) because of her underdog status, how she managed to make people notice her despite barely any support from the managers.
In tribute to her graduation announcement, I want to look at one aspect of the management’s neglect that has become a sticking point for Amina followers, her supposed lack of screentime in the PV of Iiwake Maybe (言い訳Maybe), the promotional video to the single in which, with her 8th position (out of 21) in the member’s election (senbatsu sousenkyo, an event voted by fans to determine the composition of the single), she was expected to make some substantial appearance. This actually makes me curious whether she was really screwed off her screentime despite ranking so high or not.