Sgt. Pepper’s Wonderful Hearts Club Band

Good morning, good morning, good morning!

Greetings, Citizens of the Universe!

As part of Hello! Project’s 20th anniversary celebration (and M3’s 10th anniversary), I will take a look at various releases from the collective’s history.

This review is actually the final M3 10th Anniversary review (re-reviews of stuff covered on the old Vox blog), along with being a remake what may have been the final post on it ever: Morning Musume‘s Pepper Keibu. (Ah, it’s nice to have a little help from our friends, eh?)

As you may have gathered from the title, when I first reviewed this, I had gotten very into the Beatles the year before (I still like the band now) and the whole Wonderful Hearts/Elder Club thing was in full swing (and Momusu, being made up of mostly under-20s at this point, qualified for the former) so coming up with a title was fairly easy….

Of course, “Inspector Pepper’s Wonderful Hearts Club Band” doesn’t have the same ring to it, even if it’s far more accurate. Good luck fixing that hole!

With that in mind, let’s dig into Morning Musume #37. (Oh yeah, don’t forget about the Momusu M3 Grand Prix.)

Pepper Keibu (Inspector Pepper)

The Song

As anyone remotely familiar with this song knows, it is a cover of Pink Lady‘s 1976 debut release (which had become a J-Pop standard since).

I actually first heard of the song through GO!GO!7188’s (admittedly noisy to certain ears) cover:

I could’ve sworn those random laugh noises weren’t in the song (probably added so it can stay up)…

Anyway, after a groovy intro, we get into the main meat of the song that is faithful to the original. It has that “late 2000s H!P” feel, but it captures the spirit of the original disco-pop hit. Every line is sung in pairs, save for the solo songs that (are each given by both Mii and Kei in the original) are delivered by Tanaka Reina.

(By the way, word on the street is that Tanaka’s going solo and LoVendoЯ is low-key disbanding, given the group’s lack of activities and the members increasingly focused on solo activities. Case in point. So much for a little help from your friends….)

The lyrics of a fantastic love that is disturbed by the titular “Pepper Keibu” (Inspector Pepper), acting as the befitting Love Police and telling our lovers to “go home (now).” Seriously, who likes a killjoy?

The PV

The MV is that it would looks to be a discotheque. Befitting the time of the original, it is full of glitz and style. There’s not much of a plot going on in this one. However, given that the original didn’t have much of a plot, you can excuse it if anything, it’s akin to an homage to the original the cover is meant to br… or an example of why everyone else at the time was/is better and Hello! Project was/is wota-pandering trash. You decide.

(I’m being tongue-in-cheek, just so you know.)

In Conclusion


(As this single was released in 2008, it is not subject to the changes in sales reporting as implemented by Oricon in Fall 2016.

All figures reported in this section are from the Hello! Project Wikia with the percentage and average mathematics done by moi.

Of course, if a piece of idol music really touches you, does it matter that much how well it sells? It does to some people, which is one reason I do this…)

The single ultimately achieved a Total Reported Sales figure of 46,067. 18.95% (8,731) of that came in the first day, where it achieved a Daily Rank of #3. 83.78% (38,596) came in the first week, also achieving a Week Rank of #3.

For comparison sake:

  • The previous single (the previously reviewed Resonant Blue) had a Total Reported Sales figure of 55,949 with 85.95% coming in the first week.
  • The previous single (the weepy Naichau Kamo) had a Total Reported Sales figure of 50,313, with 24.71% coming in the first day and 87.69% coming in the first week.
  • This means that Pepper Keibu‘s sales have a difference of -17.66% compared to its previous single and a difference of 9.22% compared to its next.

Closing Thoughts

Tune in next time as we cover the winning topic of the Q3 Anniversary Review Vote (which was announced not that long ago…).

Until the Next One!
— Magi-Kat

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