"Oh boy". That's honestly the first thing that comes to mind.
I'm gonna rant here, but let me say one thing first: I'm not mad, I'm not angry. In general I didn't expect anything at all and prepared for the worst, and the worst didn't happen. So I'm pretty much "ah, that's how it is" about things. But... I still want to rant haha.
First things first: No new members for Kobushi or Tsubaki. I'm really glad about that. Kobushi is going through some kind of weird phase at the moment so they might need to find themselves again, and Tsubaki just had new members. It's better to leave them for some time.
Now, first announcement: Juice=Juice. Not gonna lie, I'm very happy about that. While I do think that they shake up the group quite a bit (age-wise, and both look much younger than the J=J girls too) I feel Ruru and Nanami will make it work. Ruru can keep up in terms of performance. Nanami probably not so much, but she might be the somewhat needed fresh wind in the group. Since I like both, especially Nanami, and I still have a very sweet spot for J=J I'm pretty okay with how this turned out to be.
Of course, smells like graduations are coming now. Someone pointed out how Nanami is somewhat similar to Yuka, the bubbly one, but well. I kinda can't imagine Yuka in any other place haha. I hope they'll have at least one more year as a 7-nin group. I mean we had that kinda talk not too long ago: Up-Front would want to keep J=J around, especially as long as Karin is still there. So eh, might as well add a second gen.
Second: ANGERME. I lowkey hoped for Funakki to join MM since it was my dream from when she was a Kenshuusei but ANGERME was my second choice (I think putting her into Kobushi would be kinda weird, she looks WAY too young for J=J and she'd probably crush Tsubaki - sorry.). Therefore, yay! Especially since they can always need some nice vocals. Takechan and Moe are good, but they're both missing the certain something. (Murotan, as much as I love her, does not have a pleasant tone.) Ayano though... I honestly don't know much about her, I think she's pretty average in everything but she seems fun enough to keep up with ANGERME.
Then, MM. Oh boy. What an awkward situation. Honestly, they all sucked lol. Chisaki, unable to show any emotion. Mizuki, completely messing up the talk with Chisaki and then not preparing the group for the new member. The members, basically staring at Chisaki like "eh, it's you.".
Some people mentioned that Mizuki was still emotional about her senpai graduating (oh boy.) and the members thought Mizuki would announce her graduation and weren't prepared for new members yet, but there's effing 13 people in the group, at least someone could've done something. That's one of the reasons why I would've loved Funakki or Nanami in MM: They would've shaked things up. A crazy duo so they couldn't be held down by the others. But yeah Chisaki fits MM quite well: Good dancing, subaverage singing, somewhat cute and pretty but in the plainest way (aka doesn't stick out). I guess she's got at least a bit more character than some members.
Then, the Ichioka announcement. Oh boy. Now that was something that actually annoyed me a bit. Another announcement up in the air? Waiting once more for something? Ugh. Also: Why disband (I know they don't disband but it feels like it) a group just to make up a new one? Even Ichioka herself looked like she was thinking "uh, okay?".
Oh boy. I mean the Japanese fans probably wrote their comments in the heat of the moment and therefore were pretty frustrated, but I hope this change doesn't backfire. Or maybe I lowkey hope, but unfortunately it's not gonna be management that has to suffer through it but the girls.
I feel bad for Chisaki but she's a cute and charismatic little girl so it's a win for MM in my eyes. Would've preferred Nanami in MM though - that's all I could think watching her perform in CG, that MM so badly needs someone with that sort of overflowing charisma and showmanship. Also, maybe she would've been less miserable about it than Chisaki since she barely had time to settle into CG anyway LOL.
I can see why they added members to J=J but unfortunately it won't matter much unless their music improves quite a bit. H!P has really shit the bed with J=J (remember how their first two songs got us ALL fucked up?) I'm going to be optimistic and say maybe this will breathe a little life into that corpse.
I guess they didn't want a cute bubbly member when they just added Yokoyan. But I also would've loved Nanami in MM.
See them add new members to Kobushi in a year or so, that's basically their only solution to everything.