I don't think I've ever looked forward to a TV show starting at 10 p.m. before, but few programscontent as as popular pop SMAP, wearing suits and , apologizing live.
Their? Being at the center of a rumored group .
So far, 2016Japanese entertainment scandals, especially ones from the music industry. Alongside the SMAP , the between TV personality Becky and Enon Kawatani, lead singer of popular rock band Gesu No Kiwami Otome dominated newspapers and television broadcast time.
Entertainment scandals attract lots of attention anywhere. I'm from Los Angeles, where celebrity gossip is always in demand, and every week a new story takes the spotlight. The rise of social media sites such as Twitter and Instagramonly everything, as stories can now play out an afternoon online.
Yet recent Japanese entertainment scandals have highlighted a few big differences between the scandals here and abroad. Rumors of groups breaking up arein the West — One Direction's happened practically in real time — but talent agencies and music labels in Japan hold more power. Forget about getting out — companies such as Johnny's & Associates won't even let sites such as Amazon the for new releases online. Seeing a musician apologize to fans is one thing, but seeing SMAP apologize on live TV to their talent agency president, Johnny Kitagawa, is just .
The Becky case, meanwhile,a different found in the Japanese entertainment industry. As a result of being caught in an affair with the married Kawatani, Becky has lost commercial deals and hosting , and generally career . She's also been the primary focus of media attention. As for Kawatani, the guy who technically his wife? He's managed to come out of this relatively , and his band's latest album debuted at No. 1 on Japan's Oricon charts.
These sort ofdramas are a of the Western entertainment world, but over the past decade the media and public have placed more of the on the married man than on the single woman. Yes, Becky is more visible than Kawatani. She appears on TV, in and elsewhere, whereas he is just in a band. Naturally, attention falls on her, because she's easily the more famous of the two. But even given that context, if the Becky played out in the U.S., it would be covered in a very different way, or at least get very different reactions online.
Yet one thing would certainly stay the same — it would dominate the media, because people everywhere love a good scandal.
The Japan Times ST: March 4, 2016