Rising star of SKE48 and AKB48
By Jerrison Oracion, Senior Columnist
During the opening weekend of the FIFA World Cup this year, another big event was happening in Japan with the AKB48 Senbatsu General Election—an event wherein fans vote for their favourite AKB48 member. In the end, AKB48 and SKE48’s Jurina Matsui won the election, a decade since we first saw her in 2008—even though she is only 21 years old. She is one of the best dancers in the group and probably the greatest member of AKB48 of all time. The following music videos have Matsui either as a lead or co-lead.
AKB48 – “Oogoe Diamond” (2008)
This was the music video that caused Matsui to become famous and began the surge of many sister groups of AKB48. Also, this was the first time that a member from a sister group was the lead in an AKB48 song. In this video, now former member Atsuko Maeda feels that she doesn’t want to be in the group. When they perform, Matsui sends Maeda a text message and eventually joins and sings with them. When this song was released, Matsui’s future was unknown—now, 10 years later, she is probably the greatest member of the group.
SKE48 – “Unrequited Love Under the Blue Sky” (2010)
SKE48 did not go mainstream until 2009. This music video may have caused many to become hooked on the group. This shows what makes Jurina Matsui so exceptional. We see the group performing on top of a building in their hometown of Nagoya with helicopters going around it. The choreography in the video is excellent: It showcases Matsui’s dancing skills and shows that they are like AKB48, except they also do R&B. I like the aerial shots of Nagoya that are seen throughout the music video.
AKB48 – “Wishful Tumbling” (2017)
When you see AKB48 without their eye-catching clothes and fast-paced choreography, they are pretty much a choir. In this music video, Matsui is a co-lead with HKT48’s Sakura Miyawaki. The 11-minute-long video shows some of the group members going to an elementary school and performing with the school’s choir to pay tribute to a long-time teacher. We also see them playing with the students around the school. The music sounds like a theme song in a Studio Ghibli film.
SKE48 – “Unconscious Colour” (2018)
This year is the 10th anniversary of SKE48, and to celebrate the occasion they had a birthday party. Throughout this video we see members wearing clothes from all of their music videos, including “Unrequited Love Under the Blue Sky.” During group shots we see the group’s flag, which is still the same to this day. Near the end of it, we see them in their current uniform and we also see a graphic that indicates that they have been making music since 2008. There is even a lot of confetti and cake.
SKE48 – “Suddenly Punch Line” (2018)
The music video of the group’s recent hit single was released a week after Matsui won the election this year. It looks as if this is a solo song by her, with the rest of the group as backup singers. The suit that she wears in it is similar to the suit that Michael Jackson wore in “Smooth Criminal” except that it has sparkles. The song is a catchy track with plenty of spice. This prepares us for AKB48’s next hit single, which is sure to be very fun.