It’s a sad day for NEWS fans. Today, it was announced by Johnny’s Associates that Yamapi and Nishikido Ryo of NEWS have decided to leave the group. Yamapi wants to pursue solo activites and Ryo, also a member of Kanjani8, has found the burden of being in two groups too hectic and has decided to only continue activities with Kanjani8. NEWS will continue as a four-member group with its remaining members Koyama Keiichiro, Shigeaki Kato, Masuda Takahisa, and Tegoshi Yuya.
WTF? Can someone please tell me this is a bad dream and I’ll wake up tomorrow and NEWS will be six members again? Or that Yamapi and Ryo are just taking a break and plan to re-join NEWS next year? Please, pretty please.
When I first heard this, I was totally numb. I wanted to scream, cry, and rage, cursing Yamapi and Ryo forever and hope that they regret leaving NEWS for the rest of their lives, but I’ve calmed down a little now and am trying to reason this out now.
I’ve been a NEWS fan since 2008, and while I know about all the drama that went on with the group before then, I thought that in spite of that, or maybe because of it, they would continue to work hard as a six-member group. Yet, since the beginning of 2009, NEWS’s activities have noticeably decreased while Yamapi’s solo activites and Kanjani’s activities have taken off. All the signs that NEWS was about to change were there. Still, I believed in six-member NEWS, after all, Ryo had always been a member of Kanjani8 and if Yamapi had wanted to go solo, he could’ve done it when NEWS went on hiatus and his popularity was at its highest. I never thought they would leave the group, at least not voluntarily.
I won’t lie, I’m still pretty pissed off about this, particularly more at Yamapi then Ryo. In fact, I don’t think I have any negative feelings towards Ryo at all. Yes, I’m sad about his departure from NEWS as a NEWS fan, but as a fan of Ryo, realistically, I’d rather that he didn’t have to overwork himself by stretching between two groups. I’ve always thought Ryo being in two groups was crazy anyway and that Ryo would always have to make a choice eventually (though I always thought that choice would be NEWS).
Yamapi, on the other hand, has always told fans to believe in NEWS, blah, blah, and then he decides to pull a Jin and go solo. I know, he’s an entertainer and everything he says should be taken with a grain of salt, but I can’t help but feel a little betrayed by Yampi. I’m still a fan and I wish him good luck with his solo career and think he has potential to go far in Asia, but I’m definitely going to resent Yamapi for a while.
So, where does that leave the now four-member NEWS? Honestly, I don’t know. Tegomasu have been very active within the last three years as well and even have a new album set to drop soon. Could Tegoshi and Massu decide to leave NEWS too and continue as Tegomasu? Where would that leave Koyama and Shige? Would they be the next new NEWS or would it be the end of NEWS? I’ve turned these questions around all day and still have no answers and have decided that there’s no point in speculating such things. All I can do now is wait for NEWS to come back and give them my support as a fan in any way that I can, because they’ll need it. I don’t want this to be the end of NEWS and to make sure that doesn’t happen, I’ll do all I can and as a fan, that just means giving them my support in whatever NEWS decides to do now.
More than anything, I feel bad for my fellow NEWS fans, who have been making amazing efforts to make JE aware that fans are still loyal and can’t wait to see NEWS. I will admit, I’ve definitely been slacking as a NEWS fan and haven’t participated in any of the projects, but I’ve been following them and have been amazed and proud at how great the fandom is. After all that, this news (no pun intended) is like a slap in the face, after waiting so long and working so hard to bring the boys back. However, I hope that this event does not dishearten those fans. Instead, I hope they continue to trust and believe in NEWS and continue to offer the incredible suppport to this NEWS that they gave to NEWS as six members (or eight, or nine). Now, more than ever, they will need it.