NMB48 member Suto Ririka stunned the idol industry and incurred the wrath of the fans who, in total, paid over 10 million yen to give her over 30,000 votes to place her in the 20th position at the recent AKB annual general election, when she suddenly decided to announce that she is getting married.
Many fans took to Twitter to express their outrage at the 20-year-old, who urged them to buy their CDs or vote via mobile phone (both of which cost money), and want their money back. They also said she shouldn’t have participated in the election if she was going to get married. A significant number of these fans also say they feel betrayed.
Several celebrities and former AKB members expressed their surprise and anger at the announcement. One of whom, Oshima Yuko, uploaded a video of herself wearing a cap that read, “FUCK.”
While the announcement was indeed very much unexpected and shocking, from an objective perspective, the fans’ anger are very much uncalled for. Why, in the first place, do they support Suto? I would assume that it’s more because they find her charming and adorable, or that she’s a hard-worker, or that she’s good at singing or dancing (just throwing it out there), rather than because she is not married.
A: I like this idol.
A: Because she’s not married.
What a twisted conversation that is. And if her being single isn’t the reason for supporting her, then her marriage shouldn’t be a reason for not supporting her either. Think every other celebrity who got married.
While she announced on stage that she’s never loved someone this much (and it doesn’t seem like she’s pregnant or anything), which led to her decision to get married, some suggested that her sudden announcement could be due to pressure from being busted by tabloid magazines. Rather than getting thrown under the bus by the media, why not jump under the bus, right?
I wouldn’t say that being 20, she is very naive and her decision to get married is wrong, because I know people my age who got married at 18 and is happily married with 5 children. But if she had discussed that with a senior staff, perhaps there might have been a different outcome. Perhaps it might have been a better bet to announce her departure from the group and then later announce the marriage. Then again, maybe she still wishes to remain but such a discussion is now moot. We can only watch how things unfold from now.
From another perspective, despite taking an unmemorable 20th position, her announcement put her in the limelight and overshadowed the fact that Sashihara Rino became the first person to ever win the crown 3 times consecutive, and taking the top spot despite trailing behind in the preliminary report. So maybe it’s just a publicity stunt. Oh well, the entertainment industry isn’t called the entertainment industry if it ain’t entertaining.
On a random note, I never knew there was something called STU48.
UPDATE: Apparently, tabloid did catch her on a sleepover date with a mysterious man and published the article as soon as she announced her marriage. Also, the man is said to be a man in his 40s.