Idol bands, normally consisting of young girls, are popular in Japan and come in all guises. They range from AKB48 which has over 130 members, heavy metal idols Babymetal who supported Guns N’ Roses in their last UK tour, and the fictional idols µ’s from the anime Love Live! (see our in-depth article about it)
One thing people in the UK might find odd is that many fans of Japanese idol bands are middle aged men. This documentary follows one idol, Rio Hiiragi, and her legions of male fans.
Some previews have already commented that the programme takes a fair look at this phenomenon rather than just focusing on pervy old men. What I find out is why in their preview, the Radio Times constantly refers to “idols” in inverted commas, as if they are not real pop idols. I’m pretty sure they are all real performers.
Storyville: Tokyo Girls is on BBC Four at 22.00.