Oshima Yuko’s 10 best and most memorable moments as an AKB48 member

  March 10, 2014
AKB48 Oshima Yuko

Considering the fact that Yuko is about to graduate from AKB48 very soon, I decided to write this article. This is a tribute to Yuko, one of the most dedicated teen-idol I’ve ever known in the Japanese music industry.

As we know, Yuko Oshima is one of the soul of AKB48. She is one of the most important and popular members of AKB48. In every Senbatsu Sousenkyo, she always occupies the top two positions. She is a true entertainer who always manages to make her audience amused, entertained, amazed, smile and laugh.

Yuko can be beautiful, gorgeous, adorable, and funny at the same time. Without further ado, here’s my version of Yuko’s most memorable moments as an AKB48’s members ( I preferred to include the events where Yuko really had a big influence in it. Thus, some AKB48’s most important milestones such as “winning the Japan Records Awards” and “reaching a million sales” weren’t listed in this article )

Ranked first in Mechaike Sports Festival 2013

Yuko Oshima 2

Mechaike Sports Festival is a variety show that was aired in 2013, featuring 15 members of AKB48 (as well as SKE48, HKT48 and NMB48) who competed in various sports skills. In this tournament, Yuko managed to rank first. She recorded perfect scores in the 50-meter sprint, high jump, horizontal bar challenge, sumo, and a relay race.

Although she is “older” than most of the other members (at the time she was 25 years old), Yuko showed that she is AKB48’s number one in sport. She managed to become the fastest runner in the 50-meter sprint with a record of 8.30 seconds. She also defeated Rina Kawaei in a sumo match, and helped her team win the relay race after defeating Jurina Matsui dramatically in the last lap. If you are a fan of Yuko, you definitely have to watch this show. It is very entertaining.

Being a center in Gingham Check

AKB48 Oshima Yuko - Gingham Check

In terms of music video’s quality, Gingham Check is one of the best ever produced by AKB48. The music video directed by American film director, Joseph Kahn, and involved some famous Japanese celebrities. In this single, Yuko was given a spot as a center after winning the 4th Senbatsu Sousenkyo in 2012.

Gingham Check was first single of AKB48 after the graduation of Atsuko Maeda. At the moment Yuko had to carry heavy burden, to be in the spotlight, filling the usual position occupied by AKB48’s absolute ace. It was her first chance to prove that AKB48 would perform well – even without Acchan.

As it turned out, she managed to carry out her role very well. Along with other members, she managed to maintain AKB48’s success post-Acchan, in terms of aesthetic quality and sales.

Acting in Majisuka Gakuen

Yuko Oshima 3

Oshima Yuko’s acting ability is no longer in doubt. She has starred in more than 30 films and TV dramas throughout her her career, even received national awards several times. As a member of AKB48, Yuko Oshima’s best acting performances can be watched in “Majisuka Gakuen.”

In Majisuka Gakuen, Yuko acted as one of the main characters. She played a role as “Yuko Oshima.” In my humble opinion, Yuko’s acting is really great, even comparable to the main character, Atsuko Maeda. In some moments, she really steals the show. Her characters radiates beauty, authoritative and daunting feelings. It is undeniable fact that Majisuka Gakuen’s success was greatly influenced by Yuko’s role.

AKBingo! appearances


A factor that makes “AKBingo!” is truly enjoyable to watch is the presence of Yuko Oshima. In a the special AKB48 variety show that has been aired since the 2008’s, Yuko almost always be the center of attention. She did a lot of things to entertain the fans: being funny, did various ridiculous acts, showed-off her coolness in diferrent aspects, and even generated some tear-jerking moments.

Every action of Yuko Oshima in AKBingo! -From Muchaburi Dodgeball, Shoujiki Shogi, cooking contests, and other segments-always make the audience really enjoyed this show. Some of Yuko’s trademark such as funny faces, chicken imitation, and her pervy attitude were also firstly introduced in this program.

The future “AKBingo!” won’t feel the same with the absence of Yuko, that’s for sure.

Her first performance in AKB48's major singles, Aitakatta

Yuko Oshima 2

She was so cute and innocent during her performance in the single. She stole a lot of attention from the fans in this single, although her performance in the music video wasn’t too dominant. One sure thing, by looking at her performance in the MV, I believe no one ever predicted (not even her fans) that Yuko would be as popular as today.

Victory in the 4th Senbatsu Sousenkyo

AKB48 Oshima Yuko placing 1st on the 4th Senbatsu Sousenkyo

4th Senbatsu Sousenkyo was regarded as a critical moment for AKB48 and Yuko Oshima. There is a sort of obligation for Yuko to become the number one in the annual election because her arch-rival -as well as AKB48’s absolute ace- Atsuko Maeda, had just graduated from the group. It would be AKB48’s first Senbatsu Sousenkyo without Acchan.

For Yuko, failing to secure the top spot could harm her popularity badly. With the absence of Acchan, many fans thought that the first place-spot was “given-away” to Yuko and failure in winning such a spot in such an easy condition could be regarded as disgrace for her reputation.

AKB48 4th Senbatsu Sousenkyo Preliminary Results

However, nothing is impossible in the 48verse.

There was always a possibility for a surprise, for someone who might take away the victory from Yuko. Of course, this created a burden for Yuko, especially since Mayu Watanabe and Yuki Kashiwagi were in the peak of their popularity. Moreover, the sounsenkyo preliminary results showed that Yukirin’s vote in the second place was really close to Yuko. ( see figure )

In the end, Yuko won the General Election brilliantly. She earned a total of approximately 102 thousand votes, about 27 thousand votes ahead of Mayu Watanabe who was ranked second. Her victory earned her a center position for AKB48’s 27th single.

Graduation announcements in Kohaku Uta Gassen 2013

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Yuko Oshima in the “Kohaku Uta Gassen” (one of the largest music event held annually in Japan at the end of the year) was quite elegant. In this event, Yuko announced her graduation with a bright smile, the usual smile that we usually see whenever she performs on stage.


No tears were dropped from her eyes and she as she seems mentally and practically prepared for the graduation. The announcement was immediately followed by the performance of “Heavy Rotation,” an AKB48 song where Yuko has very dominant role.

This kind of graduation announcement really makes the fans feel relieved.
It’s as if that Yuko assured her fans that everything will be alright and that she has already have great plans for her future.

Being a center in Heavy Rotation


“Heavy Rotation” is the first performance of Yuko as a center in AKB48’s major single.

Indeed, It is an undeniable fact “Heavy Rotation” is the most popular song of AKB48 that greatly boosted the popularity of this group among the international community. The song is also AKB48’s most watched video on YouTube, with the total number of views that have exceeded 100 million.

Of course, the success of Heavy Rotation could not be separated from the brilliant performance of Yuko who acted as a center. Her smile, her energetic dance, and her distinctive voice while shouting “One .. two .. three… four!” at the beginning of the song are certainly unforgettable to anyone who calls themselves 48Groups’ fans.

Being part of Team K

AKB48 Oshima Yuko in Team K

Yuko Oshima is one of the few members of AKB48 who spent all period of her career performing with only one Team. She joined AKB48 through Second Generation audition. At that time, all of the Second Generation members were categorized as one team, Team K.

Since her first time joining Team K, Yuko has been considered the mascot of the team. We can see the main characteristics of Team K -which is full of energy, powerful, and cheerful- within her. It’s no wonder that she was appointed as the ace of this team.

Not just in her career, Team K also plays a major role in other aspects of Yuko’s life. Her AKB best friends, Sayaka Akimoto, Noro Kayo, and Sae Miyazawa were all members of Team K. She was also trusted to be the captain of Team K for approximately one and a half years, from August 2012 to February 2014. For Yuko, Team K is a family. For other K Team members, Yuko is a friend, a leader, a big sister, as well as a mentor and motivator.

Victory in 2nd Senbatsu Sousenkyo 2010

AKB48 Oshima Yuko placing first on AKB48 2nd Senbatsu Sousenkyo

In my opinion, Yuko Oshima’s best moments during her career as an AKB48 member is winning the 2nd Senbatsu Sousenkyo in 2010. Indeed Yuko won two Senbatsu Sousenkyos, but the victory that occurred in 2010 was more special. This is because in the event she successfully outranked Atsuko Maeda, a figure who is regarded as AKB48’s absolute ace, someone who always held the center position.

Yuko’s victory was quite dramatic, because on first day of election, she was still in the second place behind Atsuko Maeda. However, in the final vote count, she managed to collect around 31 thousand votes, only about 600 votes ahead of Acchan who ranked second.

Her victory in this Sousenkyo Senbatsu was an eye-opening moment for the fans that AKB48 is not only dominated by one member. Yuko showed to the other members that anyone could be the number one. She did a “mission impossible” by ranking higher than Maeda Atsuko, the “face of AKB48.” Not only that, her victory in the Senbatsu also earned her a center position in “Heavy Rotation,” a song that has a major role in increasing the popularity of AKB48 internationally.

Well, those are the ten best moments of Yuko Oshima as an AKB48 member.
Be sure to comment if you think there are some others memorable moments that should be included on this list!

Yuko Oshima 5

In the end, I hope that Yuko could maintain, or even improve her popularity after graduating from AKB48. Ganbatte, Yuko!