This week’s spotlight was on how JAXX/JAXX came to be. It happened almost immediately after Popping Zoo, consisting Homare, Jun, Kanata and Izumi, were all fired from their agency. Unfortunately Popping Zoo was not popular, and they knew due to the disagreements and combination of the lack of music opportunities or being cast into variety programs instead that their days were numbered. Eventually they were fired after there was a spat about their agency’s refusal to even take a listen to some of Jun’s compositions.
The days of Popping Zoo was over, but the boys themselves were not ready to part ways. But on that bleak day, they had a fateful encounter with Gakuto, who they had found collapsed out on the street because of hunger (and no, not because he’s starving, but because singing makes him hungry!) Since he learned they are all involved in music, he invited them out to see him perform a gig at a venue he does every now and then for fun.
Thanks to seeing Gakuto’s performance, Kanata, Jun and Homare all became rather excited about giving a hard look to their instruments again, but this sort of put Izumi in an awkward position. He didn’t know how to play any instruments, and sort it of made him the odd out one. It also didn’t really help that he was already in a bad head-space where he felt like he didn’t really have anything else to offer, and now that he was older, his dreams of becoming and idol had come to an end. It was really sad to watch him call home and ask if they’d be happy if he swung by for a visit. It just broke my heart how just doing something like that suddenly becomes difficult to even consider doing when his family was so supportive of him, always waiting to see him on TV again. It becomes a situation of, how is he supposed to face them and break the news? It’s not an easy thing to do.
Fortunately for him though, while he couldn’t see how he could make it work, Homare, Kanata and Jun all came up with the idea that maybe the drums was something he could do. And lo and behold, by the look of it, it seems he had a knack for it considering he was able to seamlessly find the beat to follow with the others during the experimental run with the buckets and pans they had set up for him haha!
But ultimately it was Gakuto helped Izumi come to terms that age means nothing when it comes to passion. Form doesn’t matter so as long as they loves music and still have the passion to pursue it. This was something he needed to hear because up until this point, he had always dreamt of becoming an idol like AneLa, so he was sort of fixated on that image. Though in all fairness, it just wasn’t a change of role that unnerved him, but it also meant learning a new instrument from scratch.
So I think it’d be fair to say, to say that Gakuto was their beacon of hope. He’s a ridiculously talented kid, who has the drive to fearlessly try all sorts of things. Heck, he really caught me off-guard when he started singing then, because I was like, “BRUH! HIS VOICE!” So it’s no wonder that Popping Zoo were smitten by him, and became inspired to form a band then after. Hilariously, Gakuto was completely oblivious to the fact that Hopping Zoo collectively with the idea to form a band around him, that when they mused he’d be the vocalist, he was like, “HUH? BUT YOU GUYS USED TO BE IDOLS?!” Hell, Homare was 100% prepared to lure this kid in with the promise of large servings of food and free-for-all snacks, HAHAHAHA, HOMARE, PLEASE!!!!!
That said, it goes without saying, the shift from idols to becoming a band was something they all had to grasp with. Homare never considered becoming a band before, but like the others, it was because they didn’t want to give up on this group that they were all determined to try once more in a different way. So they essentially built the band around Gakuto, making him the lead vocalist while they take both the vocals and instrumental roles.
And that’s pretty much how JAXX/JAXX was born, and was eventually recruited to join sMiLea Production.
STORM’s EYE MV was great, I enjoyed it. I definitely felt like it was closer to the quality we got to see of AneLa’s stage performance. It’s an excellent song, though honestly all of JAXX/JAXX’s songs slaps, and I highly recommend listening to A.P.P.L.E’s full version, because that one has some insane vocals– holy shit, those high notes!
Overall this was a great episode, I really appreciate that we’re getting the chance to see more about the formation of the groups, though I do wish we had more time to really get to know the characters. So far apart from PROTOTYPE STAR and to an extent AneLa, we’ve barely scratched the surface of LEGIT and JAXX/JAXX. And JAXX/JAXX being as charming as they are makes me want to learn about them more, so it would be nice if there would be more opportunities in the future. Though if there’s one thing I kind of wished they’d cut back on– though I understand why it exist (for the sake of the time skips and all), is the montage parts. It just feels a bit too long and draggy at those points and I have to resist the urge to just skim past it until we’re back to the action again.