Ladies and Gents, it has been a crazy month in the world of J-Pop, mostly surrounding the group Morning Musume. Among the regularly schedule releases of singles and albums, we’ve got a few tales of these idols facing challenges in the new year. Suicide, marriage, possible divorces, and even pregnancies as 2012 begins!
Former Morning Musume member and on-off solo artist Kago Ai has had a whirlwind 2011. A few months back, she was hospitalized after a suicide attempt. Reports claimed she did so because her boyfriend, a member of the Yakuza, ran into legal trouble. But earlier in December, she posted on her blog that not only has she gotten married, but is now pregnant. Kago Ai has been working as a solo artist as of late, but due to many issues, she has been unable to continue for some time. There is no word on who the father is of the child, and if he is the man she has married secretly. She follows in the footsteps of her former W partner Tsuji Nozomi, who had a shotgun wedding 2007 to Ultra-Man actor, Sugiura Taiyo.
Speaking of Tsuji Nozomi, it was reported recently that she and her husband are currently living apart. Her agency denies this is a signal of their divorce, stating it is in preparation for her to return to full-time performing. There is no word on what has happened to their two young children, Noa and Seia. Most fans speculate that there must be some martial problems present, due to a statement made that the two are apart due to some personal financial issues, which have been undisclosed.
Niigaki Risa, who is currently the oldest member and leader of Morning Musume, has announced today she will be graduating from the group after almost 11 years. She is set to leave May 13th, which means she will still release another single or two. It is not surprising to see her go, since she and Takahashi Ai (who recently left the group) were very close. She says she wants to focus on acting, something she has shown interest in due to her many stage and television roles. Many fans, including myself, are shocked by the news and she will be greatly missed.
Finally, it’s good to end on a happy note! Fujimoto Miki, another former member of Morning Musume announced that her pregnancy is not only going well, but that she is having a son. She is currently married to comedian Tomoharu Shoji, and up until now was performing full time on television and stage.
One can only wonder what all this chaos means for these idols in the new year, but it seems that 2012 might be a hectic year for all involved. Be sure to keep an eye out for any more updates, will I will post as they come. All I can say is that I hope everything works out for the best for each of these ladies!