The mysterious rule of “The Boys’ Club” that NHK decided to discontinue the show. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

The mysterious rule of “The Boys’ Club” that NHK decided to discontinue the show.

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Ren Nagase and Kaito Takahashi of King & Prince, MCs of “The Boys’ Club Premium

On October 12, “FRIDAY” reported that NHK’s “The Boys’ Club” (“Shonen Club”) was canceled just before recording, and is likely to be terminated as is. On the same night, NHK announced that the public recording for the November 10 and 17 broadcasts would be canceled. Reason,

“We are considering a fundamental review of the program, including changes to its content and title, but we have determined that we will not be able to reach a sufficient review by October 16 (the scheduled recording date).

The report states as follows. This is thought to be due to the influence of the allegations of sexual assault by Mr. Janie Kitagawa in the NHK station, which were reported by NHK on October 9.

In the fall of 2002, when the male victim was a high school student, he attended a rehearsal at the NHK Broadcasting Center to perform in “Shokura,” and was sexually assaulted by Mr. Kitagawa in the station’s restroom,

NHK takes the testimony very seriously. We cannot overlook this issue, and we will make further efforts to protect the safety and human rights of the performers.

NHK commented, “We take the testimony very seriously.

Speaking of “recorded on Mondays at NHK Hall,” I am reminded of “Let’s Go Young” (1974-86), which used to feature a lineup of male and female idols. Former Johnny’s Four Leaves, Little Leaves, and Toshihiko Tahara were the main performers, but many other production companies and female idols also appeared. In 2000, “Shokura” started at NHK Hall on the same Mondays as “Let’s Yang.

Although Ikuto Kawai of A.B.C-Z and other members serve as MCs and debutantes occasionally appear as guests, 99% of the performers are pre-debut Johnny’s Jr.

Groups like Kis-My-Ft2, who had many original songs from their Jr. days, have appeared on the program for many years. Even today, HiHi Jets, Bishonen, Shonen Ninja, etc. all have their names on the ticker and are allowed to sing many original songs. Mr. Janney checked all of them.” (Entertainment magazine writer)

For the fans, this meant that they could see the Jr. concerts every week at NHK Hall, and the “lottery results” for those who wanted to attend were said to be as exciting as those for the debutantes’ concerts.

Among the fans who filled the NHK Hall, what was most striking were the girls in the front rows and the girls in underpants who lined up on stage to dance and clap along with the janitori, a practice that had been discontinued since the COVID-19 crisis.

The fans in the front rows were obviously lined up with good-looking girls. The rule was that the girls on stage were not allowed to come wearing skirts. The reason for this was said to be to avoid jealousy from fans in the audience and those watching on TV.

It was said that the office and the program staff felt that it would be detrimental to both the fans and the talent if the girls, who had the opportunity to pass by Jr. on stage and receive up-close fan service, were even a little bit “girlie” in any way. It seems that the office and the show’s staff took this into consideration.

On the day of the recording of “Shokura,” it is said that the NHK Hall is as if it has been hijacked by Johnny’s. “The backstage area and rehearsal rooms are all in the same state,” said one of the writers.

The backstage and rehearsal rooms are filled with Jr. “The most popular Jr. as a group are put in private rooms, and the ‘others’ are put in large rooms. Those who don’t have a place to stay are practicing their dance moves in the hallway while playing the sound on their phones.

I often went there for meetings with people from the office, and I often met with Mr. Janney. I think there were many times when the Jr. members who did not perform in the program would gather there for lessons,” said a director of a commercial music program.

This comment is consistent with the testimony of a man who was victimized in the restrooms of NHK Hall.

The reception area was strictly controlled as on days when the “Kohaku Uta Gassen” or “Uta-Kon” is held, with several staff members lined up at a long table, checking the entry to the station with a list of Jr. in their hands. Even for us, there was a strict check, and those who had not applied in advance were not allowed to enter,” said the aforementioned director.

The program was edited to include songs and dances recorded one at a time at NHK Hall, and during the 10 or so seconds between “entry” and “exit,” a fanservice session was held. There was also a game corner and a “Q for Jr.” question corner recorded in a separate room, making it look like a page from an idol magazine turned into a TV show.

Another former Jr,

Another former Jr. testified, “We didn’t get paid for ‘Shokura.

Another former Jr. also testified, “There was no pay for ‘Shokura.

Members of Kis-My-Ft2, the “signboard” of “The Shonen Club. A photo attached to a post by Toshiya Miyata (left) congratulating Hiromitsu Kitayama (center) on his birthday [from his X].

I don’t remember receiving any gifts. For us, it is a training ground or a place for fans to get to know us, so we have never minded. Since there were so many performers, after the show, we had two or three large buses like sightseeing buses take us to the terminal station and we took the train home from there. That system was known to the fans, and in my case, I was often chased from Shinjuku station to my home. I wish they would have improved on that.

Once a month, there is a studio-recorded program called “The Shonen Club PEMIUM. It was the first regular program after the two became a team.

It is only natural that “The Boys’ Club” and “The Boys’ Club Premium” would be terminated when Johnny’s goes out of business. It seems that Johnny’s, including the “Kohaku Uta Gassen,” will be shut out of the sacred NHK Hall.

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  • PHOTO Masaaki Saito (Ren Nagase)

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