Nanamania

Nana Mizuki ftw!

Nana Mizuki

Honestly speaking she wasn’t really much of a blip on my radar at the beginning. I noticed her first solo album garnered some attention and I enjoyed it. It left a lasting impression, although in its far-from-perfect form. I thought she has potential and it would have worked out better with a different production style. But even less notable, for me, was her voice acting work.

Yet in the space of a few year’s time it has all changed for the better. A recent variety entertainment show did a piece of voice actress idols in Japan from the very early Hayashibara days starting with Sailor Moon up to Aya Hirano from Suzumiya Haruhi, hitting a few others in between. You can watch the 7-minute program off YouTube. Nana Mizuki is the hottest one out there today.

The following of Nana Mizuki is international. Just like every other seiyuu idol we foreign fans, immune to direct marketing from Japan, catches glimpses of their glory from both their video releases and, obviously, from their voice works. I think all my friends who knows what anime is has watched Full Metal Alchemist and/or Naruto in part, and those more serious about it probably has seen Nana in some of her more popular roles already.

Sure, her appeal goes to seiyuu fanboys, people who realizes she is Ichiro Mizuki‘s daughter, and people weaboo enough like myself to pay attention to the people who makes anime. Maybe her appeals go beyond that? I’m not sure. But somewhere behind all the hype and well-produced CDs and oricon rankings, is she really that entertaining?

Take me for an example. In the space of a year and half ago I bought about 2 of her CDs and watched 2 of her DVDs (which is not a lot). Even in that little bit of time things grew to the extent that if she sets foot within a $600 radius of me I will probably fly and go see her, if I can work out the schedule. I don’t think I could do that except for my most adored artists. Perhaps I am easily influenced given that I live up in this media crap, and I think that probably does play a part. My friends involve some Nana fans, and for the most part I do acknowledge with them in her virtues and values as an entertainer. Yet, I don’t think I like her stuff that much; that explains why I don’t have her entire back catalogue. It also explain why I’m writing this piece of viral marketing with a lot of hesitation.

But can she take it farther and further? Seiyuu3, what do you say? I’m ready to become her fan. That documentary on YouTube, while meant to be a crash course in seiyuu-idol-ness, is a bit of a telescoping lense through time and history as well. If you don’t know who she is or what kind of entertainer she is, find out. It might just be worth your while.


6 Responses to “Nanamania”

  • houkoholic

    > Seiyuu3, what do you say?

    Farther and further? It’s certainly possible as she is building up more and more mass appeal. As a seiyuu idol personality she’s already out-classed the big names of yesterday, I really don’t think she has anything more to prove and from now on what she does is just going to be trying to set more new records and precedents for the next big idol seiyuu to topple. While I’m happy that she gets recongnition which she surely deserves, it has nothing to do with how appealing she is to me personally. Simply put, I just love the infectous raw energy and directness she has. For the last 3 years I’ve been going to her concerts 3 times a year and I still never get bored nor tired of going. Everytime I go to her concerts I can just forget about everything and let myself be drowned in the atmosphere (not unlike some of the fans in the video, but not the crazy one pumping his hands in the air like mad :P). In the end that’s about the only thing which I want from an entertainer, someone who can have my absolute attention and deeply move my feelings. All the other qualities – her cuteness, her singing etc – are really just more easily understandable reasons to explain her appeal to others who don’t know her that well.

    Put it this way, someone who can bring 8000+ (this was Budoukan) people on their feet and keep them on their feet for 3 hours all the while jumping and cheering *has* to be special.

  • omo

    Call me cynical but having a sold out show and keeping everyone standing the whole time is the bare minimum of a good live musician. In other words, while I\’m sure we\’re all very happy about how things are now, will this be the case next year? Next 5 years? What\’s next for a girl who\’s made big in an industry where you either go up or you go down?

    > Simply put, I just love the infectous raw energy and directness she has.

    That\’s what reminds me of Ichiro Mizuki :)

  • houkoholic

    In the states maybe, but this is Japan remember, where the culture is different and people are more withheld with their behaviour. Just look at how the announcers reaction to the crowd for a rough idea.

    As for the future, she’ll go down eventually, just like the ones before her, it’s inevitable. While all these achievements she’s done is good for bragging rights like “Hey I told you she’s got it to make it big” type of talk, in the end it really doesn’t matter to me on a personal level. What matters is only when what she does no longer entertains me. Though I don’t see that happening anytime soon.

  • Link

    All it means in the next five years is that she will become less popular and be “forced” to come to the US for a concert and/or more. :p

    Hopefully sooner, but I won’t keep my hopes up with her crazy schedule. But it’s possible.

  • Gunsmith Cat

    Its always funny to see predictions of a future, which is the past already. Nana is now bigger than ever, and has broken even more records ever since.

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