The Reunion of “Otokogumi” Points the Way to the Revival of “TOKIO | FRIDAY DIGITAL

The Reunion of “Otokogumi” Points the Way to the Revival of “TOKIO

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TOKIO became independent from Johnny’s in 21 years, and Jojima established “TOKIO Inc. Nagase chose a different path…

Former Johnny’s group “Otoko Togumi” has been the talk of the town since they reunited for the first time in 29 years, and when they showed their heroic performance on “Music Day” (TBS) on July 16, the audience was impressed.

He is still totally cool. It gave me hope.
He’s so cool, he’s so handsome.

I still look totally cool,” “I got hope,” “He’s so cool,” and so on.

The members are Kazuya Takahashi, who has established himself as a great playwright and actor, and Koyo Maeda, who is active in variety shows and on the stage. The four members are Shoji Narita, who is mainly active in music, and Kenichi Okamoto, who has been active mainly on Johnny’s stage.

The members gathered at a music studio in ’19 and had a sound check. There, they discussed their various thoughts and feelings, and began working toward a reunion.

Okamoto switched to an agent contract with Johnny’s in November 2009, probably with the reunion in mind.

At the time, when Okamoto switched from a stable “exclusive contract” to an agent contract, speculation flew that it was “restructuring. However, when the situation was revealed, it turned out to be a preparatory move for a reunion.

The biggest obstacle to the reunion was the fact that Okamoto-san was still a member of Johnny’s office. Basically, Johnny’s does not allow people who have quit to return or reunite.

However, Okamoto-san’s decision to sign an agent’s contract made him a “free” agent. This means that Johnny’s can say, “This is something that people who do not belong to our group are doing on their own.

Of course, behind the scenes of their spectacular TV appearances and performances of hit songs of the time, there is, of course, an unspoken understanding at Johnny’s….

The reunion has great significance for TOKIO. Currently, leader Shigeru Johjima, Taichi Kokubun, and Masahiro Matsuoka established TOKIO Inc. in 2009 and are working there.

There, they are fully backed by Johnny’s, but it is a separate company by construction. If that is the case, then the reunion, like that of Otoko Gumi, is “something they are doing on their own.

Tomoya Nagase, the vocalist of the group, has been active on SNS and other social media since becoming independent in 2009, but has not been involved in any public entertainment activities. Yamaguchi Tatsuya, who became independent after being charged with indecent assault on a high school girl in 2006, has also disappeared from the public eye.

It is said that the members still keep in touch with each other. The close friendship within the group has always been outstanding.

Of course, the first priority is the treatment of Yamaguchi, who was said to be an alcoholic, but if all the members feel the same way, a reunion will not be so difficult. The Otoko Gumi showed us that,” said a source in the entertainment industry.

Otokogumi has influenced Takuya Kimura and many other junior members of the Johnny’s office. Their reunion seems to have brought courage and hope to many Johnny’s fans.

  • PHOTO Takero Shigumi

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