In today's idol pick, we will examine new "Ikemen Idol" unit, "THE HOOPERS".
THE HOOPERS are an idol group that formed following Fudanjuku's "Next Generation Audition" in 2013. Following the audition, they spent the following year training before their major debut. Taking a page from Takarazuka and, of course, idol group "Fudanjuku", this new group were selling out their performances almost from the outset of their announcement. What is it that makes this idol group so special and unique? Well, it's the simple fact that this 7-member all-girl group dresses in male clothing and have a very cool style to boot! Music-wise, their sound also breaks away from the traditional idol mold and if their first song is any indication, falls more into the male idol genre.
Their debut single "Itoshi Koishi Kimi Koishi" will be released on March 5th and the song was chosen from amongst 300 potential candidates. To promote their debut they have been performing every Tueday, until the single's release, at JOL Harajuku. The song itself is a throwback of sorts to the 90s pop sound and aesthetic and is of course extremely catchy and full of great vocal performances. Production values are high in both the song and video, but that is to be expected form a group on a major label like Universal. As to the video itself, the girls all look cooler than many guys in the Japanese entertainment industry and it's no wonder that their fan base (which is mostly female) is expanding at a rapid rate. Did I mention the video has flips and their concerts usually feature other acrobatic stunts? Because they do!
While cross-dressing idols aren't exactly new, THE HOOPERS bring a breath of fresh air into the small sub-genre and hopefully will do their part in pushing it into the mainstream! Teaser video for the group and preview clip for the new PV are found below.
◆ Rin Rigoni