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One Year Ago: Adam conquered Japan

March 14, 2011

These are tragic times for Japan, and Adam has urged people to make donations for earthquake relief. In such a time, we can find some solace in memories of brighter times one year ago, and the hope of better times ahead.

adamlambert #prayforjapan
Text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10 to Japan’s emergency relief!

Originally posted March 14, 2010

By Juneau

Hundreds of fans made the pilgrimage to Narita Airport to greet Adam Lambert, supporting my prediction that Adam will be huge in Japan as well as elsewhere in Asia, which shares the same pop culture tastes as Japan. I’m not sure when this notion started to gel in my mind. Perhaps it’s when I saw the first Idols tour pictures, with Adam in full make up and that spiked leather coat. Especially when he wears his bangs long and spiky over his eyes, he looks like a Japanese anime character come to life.

Adam’s type of androgyny is pitch-perfect for Japan. I grew up reading manga comic books (my parents very cleverly got overseas subscriptions for my sisters and me as a way to motivate us to learn to read Japanese), and I remember having crushes on certain male characters who were an intriguing blend of masculine and feminine: long hair, wide-open sparkly eyes framed with long lashes, refined lips, manly cheekbones and strong, dark eyebrows – Adam, in other words. Since embarking on my Adam adventure and being informed about the existence of Slash fiction, I have learned that the most popular genre of manga in Japan is Yaoi, gay romance stories written by women for women. (See this web site, for an example.) Adam’s sexual orientation will likely fuel the fan frenzy.

So, Japan is primed to embrace Adam. The music is almost incidental – the Japanese pop music industry is notoriously capable of marketing no-talent stars – but I have no doubt fans will be ecstatic to have a singer who is as good to their ears as he is to their eyes. His warm, polite personality will bowl over a society fabled for its manners. His heritage is a bonus, as the Japanese generally admire the Jewish people. And to clinch the deal, there’s Adam’s love of sushi. There’s nothing like the sight of a gaijin (foreigner) enjoying their food to win over the hearts and minds of the Japanese. Now if he can be caught on camera savoring fugu, the puffer fish famed for its deadly toxic gonads, he could possibly be in the running to be a future Prime Minister.

Adam’s arrival at Narita airport sets off fandemonium

Videos: Adam’s performance in Tokyo (from Adamholic’s blog)

Juneau writes about neuroscience, physics and whatever else attracts her peripatetic attention. She is co-author with Xena of On the Meaning of Adam Lambert, and co-hostess of this Salon.

One Comment leave one →
  1. buffy522 permalink
    March 14, 2011 5:37 pm

    Oh Juneau, You never stood a chance against your love affair with Adam. It was destined at a very young age!! Thanks for sharing all of this juicy sociological insight.

    I always felt that Adam’s promotional tour to Japan was CRAZY! There was one video of his appearance on a television show. Don’t remember if he even sang. He was dressed in black with spikes and wildness in every crevice. His hair was in high spike mode and his make-up rivaled KISS. And he was surrounded by very young and very tiny children. And everyone seemed delighted. I thought “this is like PeeWee’s Playhouse” (how prophetic that Adam now tweets that he was obsessed with that show).

    But it seemed a little inappropriate by US standards. Now you have made it all clear. And I knew that Japan tends to embrace some singers who don’t even make it here (recently watched “The Runaways”) and hoped that was not an Adam Lambert destiny (no way).

    None of that came across to me on his tour there. All was pretty much GLT. But that promotion…..

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