The Internet Community That Makes Fan’s Dream of “Knowing the Private Life of Idols” Come True

The Internet Community That Makes Fan’s Dream of “Knowing the Private Life of Idols” Come True

ULTRA GIRLS (Photo : Yusuke Homma, Colorist : Takaaki Yoshida)

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Last time, I wrote about “Gachi koi”, although you don’t have the feelings of love for that idol, the feeling of wanting to know anything about their favorite idol is a common thing among fans. What they ate today, where they cut their hair, what brand their clothes are, it’s not that we want to know everything, but we want to know as much as possible about them.

This is a picture when the members of ℃-ute went to “Akakara”, from Airi Suzuki’s blog (2013 Feburary 1st). The information that an idol went to “Akakara” is common information.



ULTRAGIRL : 赤からはなぜかアイドルに人気な場所である。Akakara is quite popular restaurant among idols. (Photo : Yusuke Homma, Colorist : Takaaki Yoshida)

Maybe this is close to thirst for knowledge. Knowing something more than anybody else is important for fans, especially Otaku. In case of idols, the information itself includes the “human like” part, along with her personality. That is why information during the time she is not doing her idol activities, AKA private life, is a very important component in getting to know the idol you are supporting.

This feeling of “wanting to know an idol’s private life” is something that has been common throughout the years. It existed during the 80s and 90s idol boom and it still exists today. However, the aspects have become very different. Today, I would like to write about this will.

I feel that we are rich in ways to get idol information. What they did in their private life is posted real time on Twitter, like in the example of ℃-ute, everything they did that day may be completely uploaded on a blog. Especially twitter, if the idol tweets a lot, you can tell what she is doing throughout the day. Even if the idol doesn’t tweet much, the other who was with the girl talks about what they did with the idol, and this kind of information is everywhere on the internet.

The other day, Kanon Fukuda a former member of ANGERME graduated from ANGERME and Hello!Project, and on the next day, she started Twitter. She even did a project called “#Maro ni Shitumon (Ask a question to maro)” where she replies to fans, and I felt that the fans were able to feel much closer to Kanon than before. Before graduating, we were able to get information from blogs, and even see her at release events and lives. However, Twitter has the most feeling of “private life”. After graduation, there was even a word, “Maro Loss Loss” meaning they didn’t even get to have the loss feeling. This must have been a happy miscalculation to fans.

The twitter account of previous member of ANGERME Kanon fukuda (@kanonfukuda). She tweets very often, including replies

In the current situation, getting information about an idol’s private life from the internet is a normal thing, but in the 80s and 90s, magazines, radio, and television media were the main places. Especially magazines, in some, there were corners of “Showing My Room” , and this was very important to otaku in order to see the private life of idols. There were also off shot photos from recordings and shootings of a photo album, and we used to check the pages from corner to corner. We got information from places like, the small item on the desk behind her in the photo had a hello kitty picture.

The special edition of Dunk by Shueisha had many corners that introduced many parts of an idols private life. By the way, the water color painting in the picture of Eriko Tamura’s room is a present from me.


Also, the media with the most speedy information was radio. There were many live radios and we were able to get a lot of information about events. Although email wasn’t major yet, we were able to send things real time by FAX, and these question were used in the question times. Many idols talked about their favorite music, movies, and information about their private life on radio, and many idol fans listed to the radio. Sunday night on Nippon Broadcasting was the golden time.

Nippon Broadcasting Sunday Night Program from 1988 October to 1989 March

20:00 Tahara Toshihiko no Dancin’ Tonight
21:00 Ogawa Noriko Datte 15-sai
21:30 Watanabe Marina Mitsumete MY HEART
22:00 Watanabe Minayo Koi wa Choppiri
22:30 Shinnittetsu Concert
23:00 Nakayama Miho Chottodakeeekakko C
23:30 Asaka Yui Sukoshi Otonano Silhouette
24:00 Kudou Shizuka YES IT’S YOU
25:00 Minamino Youko Nanno Koreshiki!

However, the amount of information is little, hardly comparable to what we have now. Since they only had so little information, they tried to get information from everywhere. So, I feel they were more passionate in trying to get information. And the passion itself became passion for supporting them. now, since there is so much information, many people choose to pick up information from the whole.

I guess most of you here have never watched an idol group “Candies” from 70’s, however, some of you might know the shocking phrase that a member Ran Ito left at the concert where the group’s sudden breakup was made. The phrase was “I want to be back a normal girl”. It means that quitting idol is equal to “to be a normal girl”. Idols’ private things were very closed in old days.

夜のヒットスタジオ「ハート泥棒」1976.9.6 (C)フジテレビジョン ©Yoru no Hit Studio “Heart Dorobo” 1976.9.6 Fuji television

夜のヒットスタジオ「ハート泥棒」1976.9.6 (C)フジテレビジョン
©Yoru no Hit Studio “Heart Dorobo” 1976.9.6 Fuji television

Candies have just released a memorial DVD on 2015 November 4th.
DVD set of 5 “Candies Memories FOR FREEDOM” (sony music special site

What about now? Idols transmitting information not only about their activity reports, but also their private life has become normal. Fans try to find things in common in order to feel closer to them. Its like they have their idol activities on the extension of their private life. So, even if they aren’t idols anymore, it gives us more the image that they just won’t be having stage performances anymore.

Of course, showing your private life is a very serious thing. In a world were you can show everything, how to decide what not to show, and how to hide it are very important skill for idols today. And these skills are something unnecessary for a normal girl. It gives me the impression that idols are still special, even if times have changed.

Featured Song : Hohoemi Gaeshi/Candies

Translated by zoomie

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Related Artists : ANGERME °C-ute
Toshiro Arai

A producer of website "TOKYO IDOL NET", which "photography" and "idol" is its concept. He also writes for Tokyo Idol Project, and so on.

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