Restarting the Old Rusty Engine
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Sunday, March 11, 2007

Hello! Morning Slot Gets Cut


Hello! Online reports that the Hello! Morning (Haromoni) airtime is cut to half, from 55 minutes to 30 minutes. Actually, I'm happy. Now before you start throwing rotten eggs at me, I will explain.



I stumbled on this news earlier. But I brushed it off, thinking that it was just another rumour. This was not the first time I heard of news like this. There were also rumours of Berryz Koubou taking over the Haromoni slot with their own show. Surely enough, when the Haromoni episode on September last year where Berryz Koubou starred the entire show with a trip to the country side and a junior school, I grew even more worrier. But the following weeks seem to resume as usual, and I soon forgot about it. Perhaps there WAS a plan in the works but UFA shelved it in the final minutes.......? I guess we'll never know.

Personally, I was worried with a bigger issue - that the Haromoni show will be shelved entirely, and surrendered the airtime slot. For a long time, other than the drop in the sales of CDs, fans were also concerned with the falling ratings of the Haromoni show. Compared with the Golden Age times, of course it is abysmal, but I blame the lack of follow-up by the management. There was a notice on the Hello! Morning official site at TV Tokyo, where they will be broadcasting selective memorable scenes in the past Haromoni episodes for two consecutive weeks - 25th March and 1st April. The show will be collecting requests from viewers for the scenes that they want to watch again. I was shocked. From my point of view, it smells like a "final episode". Coupled with the rumours of Haromoni airtime, I felt a cramp in my stomach... Is Hello! Morning finally over??!



To my relief, Hello! Online finally highlighted that it was only an airtime "cut", not a "cancellation". Though I could not locate this news from TV Tokyo itself and nothing on the Haromoni official BBS as well, but I believe H!O's news is reliable. From their source, apparently TV Tokyo with their TV network TXN, is making the adjustments to achieve their goal of reaching consistent tv ratings of 10% during their "Golden Hour". So the same TV station where Morning Musume was born now cuts the Haromoni airtime. I assume UFA has failed to negotiate (or did not try) to reverse the decision, but then again the decision is too way up in the corporate level to change. Welp, they're the boss...


In the net (well, in the Hello!Online community actually), while some were dissapointed upon hearing the news, there were others that remain positive on this issue - citing that it is a good time for Haromoni to reflect on their show material, perhaps strive to provide a much more compact but quality show. And I agree with this. After all, Haromoni started out with less than 20 minutes back in the year 2000 and the showtime gradually increased to the current 55 minutes. What the show needs now is more enthusiasm and participation from the Morning Musume members. Rather than depending on the show writers to arrange for visits to Disneyland, theme parks, zoos and animal farms for them. I remember the time during a (now defunct) Hello Pro Wide segment where Nakazawa Yuko and Ishikawa Rika boasted that they could have their own independent show with HPW. That's the type of enthusiasm I wished to see more in the current lineup.



However......... I can't help but think --> Will Hello! Morning eventually be removed from the slot altogether? Maybe yes...... maybe no.......



Thinking about it makes me shudder......

6 comments:

Craig said...

As they say: All good things must come to an end.

Anna said...

If Haromoni really does end someday, it'll mean we'll be clueless about the members...meaning we won't see their comedy-side. We'll just mainly see news about upcoming singles, concerts, pbs, etc. o_o

Oh yea! Many rumors are flying out about this:
I've made up my mind

Until next week's Haromoni to find out...

Mick a.k.a. jinryuichi said...

@Craig.... not so soon, I hope...
@ Anna.... I agree on that. On the rumour, I haven't watched yesterday's Haromoni yet... I wonder what Tsunku's message could be?

.... so now everyone is probably trolling on his website everyday till the coming Sunday. ^_^

Xacur said...

I just hope I didn't find all this H!P thing too late :/
What was I doing some years ago?
Sincerely the comedy-side is what I like the most ToT.

Faramir, said...

"What the show needs now is more enthusiasm and participation from the Morning Musume members."

but I suspect that the motivation for the required enthusiasm is still non-existing and unlikely to be born again; the motivation behind, and spirit of, the Gold Era doesn't seem likely to come back; perhaps MoMusu needs a hiatus for a substantial period of time before returning again? because, as the saying goes, "absence makes the heart grow fonder"...

sniper said...

I dont rly mind as long as they stop with the pucchi games, saw a bit of this weeks H!M and i see they got the skits back!!!!

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