I saw the Team Lives in person, including this show, so although none of this was technically new to me, there were things I had forgotten and things I was happy to see again. If you would like to see them yourself, you can find them for download here. As I really like to rank things, the first thing I did once I finished watching was decide which moments I liked best.
Before you move onto this list, I feel the need to warn that my interest in Yamabuki as a team, as characters and as actors, is 99% Akutsu Jin/Kawakami Shota. Therefore, although I really did try and find other things I liked just as much in this live, this list basically became a top five moments of Shota/Akutsu in the Team Live. I’m not going to make any apologies for that, but that’s how it turned out.
1. Shota’s kabedon
Was anything else really going to be number one? This could possibly top my ranking of my top five things of all time, so putting it as number one here wasn’t a hard decision at all. What I love about this entire section of the DVD is that it was sprung on him completely by surprise, he was clearly killing himself with nerves about having to do it, and yet managed to pull it off with all of the coolness that Yuma promised was inside of him. Also, that after he had finished he basically melted into an embarrassed puddle and all he could do was talk about how much his heart was pounding. Add all of that to Naoya’s face when Shota puts his hand on his shoulder, and how awkardly into everything Touya seems to be, and it’s just the perfect few minutes.
2. Mashiro’s story about that final scene
When I watched the Yamabuki DVD, I remembered about this story from when I had seen the Team Live myself. When I saw Mashiro in floods of tears on stage during that final scene with Akutsu, I remembered what had come before it, and that made me cry too. Basically after they’d done that same scene countless times previously, when they were backstage before the final time, Shota approached Mashiro from behind on his way past (as he would go on stage first), patted him on the head and said “let’s do our best for the last time”. Their friendship is such a beautiful thing and anything that relates to them together has to make this ranking.
3. Yuma and Shota’s balloon popping incident
So for the final round of the game, the pairs had to pop a balloon between them. This caused much amusement through all of the shows. I mean, if you want another amusing moment from this particular one look no further than Jin and Tsuji somehow managing to turn their balloon to dust, but this can only be topped by Shota and Yuma, the “Romantic Team” versus a virtually impossible to burst balloon. Everyone is celebrating and congratulating themselves on successfully popping their balloons and suddenly they turn round to find Shota and Yuma in some kind of violent romantic embrace trying desperately to burst theirs even though they have clearly lost. They barely came out of it alive.
4. Shota’s intro video
So let me tell you something about Shota. If he came up to me right now and asked me to go on a date with him, I would drop every single thing (including work) and be there in seconds. He is the closest to an “ideal boyfriend type” that I could possibly have (so if he has a twin, please tell me…), and so of course, his date situation video was amazing. There’s just something perfect about this tall, tough looking guy with a tiny dog on a leash. And then that bit where he reaches out and GRABS hold of the girl’s hand. My heart.
Since this was originally a group song, not only was it interesting to see it performed by only one team, I was amazed when I saw that the beginning was done as a solo by Akutsu. He didn’t participate (as a singer) in the song before it, because Kagayake, Motto is really not his kind of song, so it was nice to see that they made up for that by giving him such a big part in this one. He’s not technically a perfect singer (although I’m not sure how much of that is being in-character) but I just love to listen to his voice. I only wish there was a recorded soundtrack of this live, so I could listen to it more often.