I was honestly somewhat surprised by this concert not because it wasn't in vein with how things are currently, but because I had read so many reports on twitter saying it wasn't as bad as that. However, I'm not sure if we were seeing the same concert, but it was pretty bad to me-- in terms of fairness, first and foremost, of course, but also in terms of being an enjoyable concert, because the guys all looked tired and sad.
In case it isn't clear, consider this your official warning: This report will reflect the opinions of someone who considers Sexy Zone to be 5 members, and who doesn't think that Marius and Sou and their fans (and the fans of all five) should have to settle with "but at least they were included at all!" I will speak negatively of 3-member segments, and of parts where Marius and Sou were treated as Juniors. I will not speak negatively of any group member, because I love all five of them, but I will criticize the way the management is making the group. If you find this offensive or disagreeable, please don't read this report.
Also, as always, this isn't a full setlist report, but rather my impression of the experience.
There was very little line for goods before the show, and nothing (as far as I know) was selling out. This is actually pretty unusual for Yokohama and for Sexy Zone, so I'm not really sure what that says. The crowd seemed to be fairly normal; there was a slightly higher volume of girls in red, blue, and purple than green and yellow, but not by that much.
Our seats were in the first row of the second section of the "arena" in Yokohama Arena, which is the lower stands (idk why YokoAri names its sections differently than any other venue, but the actual arena in YokoAri is "center"), so we could see quite well. We were in a prime spot to be seen, too, because of the aisle in front of us, so we were glad to be equipped with Marius and Sou uchiwa.
Before the concert, the screen showed the guys, as usual. However, it showed Marius and Sou first, without anything written, then Jinguji, Genki, Hirano, Takahashi Kaito, Matsuku, and Genta in the same fashion (their photo but nothing written). Then came Kento, with his name written on the screen, for a much longer time than the juniors or Marius and Sou, and then Fuma the same as Kento, and Shori the same as Fuma and Kento. As in, Fuma, Kento, and Shori were treated one way, while Marius, Sou, and the Juniors were treated another way (and, I think it's probably safe to say, worse.) This didn't give me a good feeling about how the rest of the concert was going to go, but it was a pretty accurate one-- basically, for almost the entire concert, Marius and Sou were treated as featured juniors.
The show opened with King & Queen & Joker on the center stage, with the same staging as the summer concert, meaning that KFS stood up on the center podium while Marius and Sou, dressed in completely different costumes, stood below amongst the juniors. KFS wore red, yellow, and blue costumes while Marius and Sou wore white costumes with a few green or purple accents; the juniors wore white costumes with less colour than Marius and Sou, but Marius and Sou's costumes were far more similar to those of the juniors than those of KFS. They then continued with Sexy Summer ni Yuki ga Furu and We Gotta Go. For this opening part, honestly, I mostly watched Reia, who was near me on the catwalk. Any juniors who were not the 6 I mentioned earlier were mostly ignored and honestly treated as backup dancers, which is… how juniors are supposed to be treated? But it didn't exactly make me feel better when the other 6 seemed to be being featured for the sole purpose of making Marius and Sou not group members. It was the first time I'd seen Reia for a long time, and I was really happy to see him; at one point I think he saw my uchiwa and smiled, but he was mid-dance so he couldn't do much. We didn't make eye contact this time, sadly.
There was a short dance/instrumental part before it went into Shori's first solo, Mada Minu Keshiki. It was good and a sort of "when did Shori grow up" moment, but the style wasn't really my cup of tea. After that came the Sexy Boyz/Sexy Show song Traffic Jam, which was cute because they started off playing with toy cars… but also, you know, ridiculous considering that Sou is closer in age to Shori than he is to Marius, and yet somehow Shori's allowed to have a sexy solo while Sou is reduced to playing with toy cars with Marius and a bunch of Juniors. After that came Fuma's first solo Party Up!, and then Kento came out for Dear High Heel. He asked if we were wearing high heels, and threw something (a rose?) to a girl supposedly wearing high heels… only then called her out that she was actually wearing sneakers XD; He played the piano, and I laughed that Kento seems to have a fixation with women's shoes recently.
Up next was a seasons-themed piece, starting with Sakura Saku Color from Johnny's World with Kento, Shori and Marius. It was nice to see a different group breakdown than usual. Next up was summer, which was Ame Datte with Sou and… Fuma! Surprise! To make it even with Sakura Saku Color (because, you know, when it's Fuma who's losing out on stage time we have to make it even), he and Sou performed together, but they came onstage with their backs turned and hoods up, so at first everyone thought it was Sou and Mari, but then Fuma turned around and started singing in a deep voice and it was adorable. XD I think Fuma was really having a good time, because he was grinning and laughing and it was totally adorable. However, the back track that the guys lip sync to/sing over during the chorus was clearly NOT recorded with Fuma, but rather the regular recorded version, because suddenly Fuma's voice morphed into Marius's voice |D;;;
Next up was Autumn with Ghost, which was the staging from the 2014 concert. There were Juniors backdancing in this part, but because the costumes were from 2014 and the choreography was also from 2014, this part actually felt like the group was 5 people. It was the only time in the entire show that the choreograph and costumes reflected Sexy Zone as being a 5 member group-- there was no "third tier" group of featured juniors after Marius and Sou, and Marius and Sou weren't intentionally separated from KFS. It was probably the most enjoyable 1.5 minutes of the show for that reason. Last up was Snow & Stars, one of the B-sides from Kimi ni Hitomebore, so obviously, it was 3-member. A lot of girls (including ones wearing red, purple, or blue) turned off their penlights, sat down, or otherwise looked unhappy, which was heartening, at the very least.
Continuing in the winter feeling, they did the ballad version of Sexy Summer, and Marius and Sou came out again for Suki Sugite after that. They continued with Butsukacchau yo, and then finished the first half on the mainstage with Hey you! For all of these, though, Marius and Sou were wearing a costume much more similar to the juniors than to KFS (I totally forget now but I think KFS were in the blue suits while SouMari and the juniors were in turquoise?), and the choreography didn't separate them from the juniors; in fact, it was usually KFS in the center and Marius and Sou more close to the juniors than the "main" three. …Also, somewhere in here, Marius and Masuda Ryo sang Livin' La Vida Loca, which was hilarious |D; But I totally forget where.
As expected, since it was the early show on the last day, instead of an MC, they had a press conference. All the reporters came onto the center stage, and the 6 featured juniors stayed onstage behind Sexy Zone (though thankfully they didn't get asked to talk or treated like group members) while they took the pictures. At one point, Sou tried to stand up on the riser thing they had KFS standing on, and someone told him "no, get down with Marius"… it was meant as a joke but it really wasn't funny.
The reporters asked some questions for the TV broadcasts, then wished Kento, Fuma, and Marius a happy birthday. Sou called Marius his aibou, or… partner? Important close friend? Not sure how best to translate it, but it was sweet and I'm glad they at least have one another. They sang happy birthday for Marius, since his birthday was the next day, and Marius said that he grew to 180 cm in the past year. However, when he was questioned by the others, who didn't believe him, he was all like, "Just kidding!" |D; He also mentioned how last year he had written a letter to all the members for his birthday (which got on the DVD, I'm pretty sure, if you're curious). Then they celebrated one million people having come to their concerts over the course of three years (Fuma jokingly guessed that about 135 people or something along those lines had come, and then when they announced it was 1 million, he said "I was close!" XD;) The interviewer asked about the ridiculous penlights, and Kento said he named them "Sexy Baloon Lights" to which the interviewer replied "Oh, you really put 'Sexy' on everything, don't you?" lolol. Shori said that the tree set was his idea… that he came up with about 10 minutes before the planning meeting. |D; Marius called it the 'Sexy Family Tree' because Marius. |D; They also mentioned the volleyball support thing again, before posing for a final photo. At first they all blew kisses, but then the reporters told just Shori to blow a kiss, but Shori, bless his heart, replied, "I think it'd be better if everyone did."
After the press conference ended, it was the Junior corner, including the new song that the 6 featured juniors sang, Katsunda Win. Some of the younger set (Hashimoto, Inoue, and someone else? I don't remember now) also got featured. As you might expect, I mostly watched Reia.
Up next was the cluster of 3 member songs (lol Marius and Sou have it worse than the Juniors I guess, since the Juniors got a corner, and then there was a KFS section, but no Marius and Sou corner… not that I would want it segregated that way, but just in terms purely of featured stage time) starting with Otoko Never Give Up, then Kimi ni Hitomebore, and then Bad Boys. The excitement level in the arena seriously plummeted and a bunch of girls sat down again. The number of penlights that were on in the arena seemed to be about 1/2 at most? And no one really seemed excited except Junior fans who were trying to get the attention of the juniors. And the real kicker here is that Marius and Sou were LITERALLY dressed as juniors LITERALLY backdancing for KFS. It wasn't even like they were dressed sort of like the juniors, they were literally a part of the junior backdancing choreo. It took me halfway into Kimi ni Hitomebore to even realize they were on the stage. What the hell.
After that was Kono Te wo Tsunagou, so Marius and Sou got to come onstage for a few more minutes before it became time for more solos (because apparently there's time for 6 solos, but not 5.) Kento came on for Black Cinderella, and… danced with a high heel. That's right, 100% of Kento's solos involved high heels XD;;; I find this extremely amusing. Then came Shori's second solo Suki da yo, which, I'm sorry to say, I literally don't remember at all, followed by Fuma's second solo, 20-Tw/Nty-, which started out with a skit where Kawasaki Koki was playing baby Fuma and Fuma was playing current Fuma and they took photos together XD During the song, lots of baby photos of Fuma played on the screen and it was super super cute. The lyrics were also played on the screen in his handwriting, which was a nice touch.
After that was Maware Miracle, and then finally Marius and Sou came back to do… an ABC-Z medley? It was really random, but they called Kawai, Goseki, and Tsukada on the stage (they said that Tottsu had been there earlier but he had to go) and did Ashite no Tame ni Boku ga Iru and Crazy Accel (before randomly also doing Real Sexy). KFS were dressed in white while Marius, Sou, and the juniors were dressed in green and gold. Afterwards, they had a short talk with Kawai, Goseki, and Tsukada before thanking them and then performing BaiBai Dubai.
Then it was time for the end ballad… with… you guessed it, just KFS. They sang Ippo Zutsu~Walk on the Wild Side~ and all just looked… sad and tired and lonely. They asked the fans to continue to support them and said that they love all their fans… and Shori said "迷っても僕らを信じてください" which is sort of vague and can translate to "Even if you're lost, please believe in us" or something along those lines, but also can be translated to "Even if we're lost, please believe in us." I'm not sure what he meant, but I was reading it that way, and I felt for how much they must be suffering, even though they're the ones "benefitting" from the split.
The show ended with Sexy Zone, which felt bittersweet, since again, Marius and Sou were dressed like juniors and treated as second-rate members… for their own debut song. After that, they left, and then did With You, Lady Diamond, and Kanzen My Way for the encore. During this part, Marius saw me! It did perk me up at the end. ♥ I've always wanted him to see me since we're both half, and he finally did! Hurray. Sadly, though, the other shows seem to have gotten a second encore, but because of the press conference, ours seems to have been cut.
And that's it. I'm not attending the Osaka or Nagoya shows, so hopefully they'll be better, but… I don't have my hopes up. At the very least, they all seemed to be trying their very hardest, and there were a lot of times when KFS hugged or supported SouMari, so it seems like no matter what, they're sticking together and five and trying to get through this.