Why Rino Sashihara’s Otaku Character Gets So Much Popularity?

  March 29, 2012

AKB48 now has only one member in long-lived Japanese afternoon TV show, “Wallate iitomo”. But until today, the group had 2 members in it. The show is one of the most prominent TV programs in Japan, and joining the show as a regular member means the person can get a tremendous exposure to general public. So who is that member? Today, 29th Mar, during the live-air of the show, Sayaka Akimoto revealed her graduation from the show, and the other member, Rino Sashihara, aka Sassy, who was the regular member of Wednesday on-air of the show, are to move to Monday on-air.

Recently, Rino Sashihara’s popularity is increasing surprisingly fast. The reason for that is partly because of the push from Management side (AkiP sometimes refers to her as ‘amazingly incapable’, of course, as a compliment in a very shy way). But think about the original concept of AKB48, normal girls who are pursuing their dream, there is no other member more comfortably fit in the concept than Rino Sahihara, aka Sassy.

When she was on the front cover of fashion magazine JJ, everyone was surprised since her character is difficult to associate with glitz and glamour of JJ magazine. Sassy said, “When I was at photo-shooting, I tried to be cool telling myself that this is the first and the last time I am on the front cover of fashion magazine. It helped me smash my best DOYA face.”

The chief editor of the magazine explained the reason why they picked her as a cover model, “People says she is not fashionable or hetale (= pathetic), and think fashion magazine is the most unlikely place to see her. But personally I’ve been interested in her since some time before. She represents some common feeling of Japanese women, which is ‘I’m not confident with my sense of fashion’. That kind of hetale mind is what we want to convey through her to the readers.”

Looking back the photo-shooting, Sashihara said “I determined giving it everything I have, not half-heartedly. If it’s successful, that’s all because of Mr.Photographer. I am so grateful to him.”

Despite the public perception of her, Sassy is actually a beautiful girl. In JJ magazine, what you will see is amazingly beautiful long leg and beautiful skin, which most of us never have noticed before. Borrowing Magazine’s cheif editor words, “She is such a rare person. Usually we say he or she is too self-conscious or arrogant. But she is the opposite of that. She is totally self-non-sonscious.”

Sassy on JJ Magazine

solo single jacket
Sayaka Akimoto was also in the Show