The 29th GJS Seminar(Komaba ASNET Seminar)Choosing Illusion: Mediated Reality and the Spectacle of the Idol in Kōji Shiraishi's Shirome

Date and time: December. 15, 2016 (Thur.), 5:00-6:00PM
Venue: Seminar Room, 2F, Bldg. 101,Komaba Campus, The University of Tokyo
Speaker: Lindsay Nelson (Lecturer, Center for Global Communication Strategies, The University of Tokyo)
Language: English

Abstract: This article examines questions of mediated reality, authenticity, and fandom in the context of two distinct media spaces: Japanese pop idol culture and found footage horror films. These two worlds are linked by the concept of the ‘mutual agreement’ (o-yakusoku)—an agreement between fans and creators that certain illusions of intimacy and reality will not be questioned. In the found footage horror film Shirome, which stars the pop idol group Momoiro Clover Z, we see how this ‘mutual agreement’ serves to empower fans (who can feel a sense of protec- tiveness as the idols they worship are terrorized) and uses the trappings of reality (cheap cam- era work, performers working without a script) to create a fictional world that nonetheless feels authentic to viewers. Ultimately, Shirome is an example of what happens when the insti- tutions of government, family, and religion lose their power and are replaced by transnational, transmedia communities that openly embrace their illusoriness.

Organizer: The Global Japan Studies Network (GJS)
Co-organizer: Network for Education and Research on Asia (ASNET)
Contact: gjs[at]