12 Days of Waifus – Day 12: Hatsune Miku (Vocaloid)
Ahh, Hatsune Miku. The Vocaloid grew to a phenomenon after Crypton debuted Hatsune Miku, and personally, I had only become a fan of Vocaloid after I played Project Diva F on the PS3. Unfortunately, Vocaloid has it’s fair share of competition over the years, with it’s peers of similarly heavy fan-based franchises, including the likes of Touhou, KanColle, idolm@ster, Love Live and the likes-admittedly, I like all of what I mentioned there-but my true ultimate love will always be for Vocaloid and Hatsune Miku.
I think if you had been keeping up with my blog, it will be no secret that I like Vocaloid, even if I write very sporadic posts on them, and I’m not as hardcore (I’m more familiar with just the games’ songs, for one). But despite anything, I’m a proud fan, and no matter what anybody says or do can change change that fact.
Earlier, I said “heavy fan-based franchise” and Vocaloid’s certainly one of them, if not, the oldest of these type of media if I’m not wrong. This goes back a lot to the topic of emotional investment. In Love Live and LLSIF, when you play a song in the game, you’re not simply just listening to the music, but also remembering, and investing yourself in the memories and nostalgia of u’s performing on stage. In Vocaloid, because it’s so heavily fan-based, people invest themselves in extremely various ways-some of them invest by literally composing music using the softwares, while some invest by drawing fanarts; as for us fans, we enjoy these works, whether or not they be music, pictures, even fanfictions, by these creators. Most of the time, the pictures will be based on the motifs of the songs-for example, how this Miku wallpaper I’m using on my tablet is actually based on Miku’s Deep Sea Girl.
See, this is the charm of Vocaloid-EVERYTHING is completely fan-based; from both the creators and the fan. When you’re listening to a song, you’re investing yourself in the music and their freely-interpretative lyrics, along with thousand other fans who may also invest in the same song/re-arrangement or even looking at pictures based on said song; all created by different fan creators who are also investing in the song via their creation-it’s a wonderful, and casual give-and-take environment, especially with the ease of video-sharing websites like NicoNicoDouga and Youtube, where you can not only listen to the music but visually see these Vocaloid characters in the videos, also mostly done by fans. Just by listening to a song, I genuinely feel like I’m belonging to something much larger than myself.
“I think [Hatsune Miku] is an ambassador between the ‘read-only’ world of the 20th century, in which people were only passive receptors of culture, and a new ‘read-and-write’ world, in which people can become cultural emitters as well. On the one hand you have musicians who think of her as a partner or platform for their own musical activities, on the other hand some creators consider her as a mere synthesizer. Hatsune Miku is at the same time a pop star, an idol, a creative hub connecting artists between each other, a technological innovation, a software, an interface, a concept, a creative motif, a symbol. If her sudden appearance was more like that of a messiah than Madonna, the devoted fanbase who create her catalog are her apostles.”
~by Hiroyuki Itoh-Crypton CEO and Miku’s co-creator
This investment is magic, and Miku is a representation of such magic. This fan-based environment also results in a massive diversity of music, comprising of a wide array of genres-each connecting to it’s listener with a different kinds of emotion. Imagine this-say you have a dozen of favorite artists whose songs you empathized; some made you cry, happy, scared and so on. Miku encompasses them all and can sing songs portraying all kinds of emotions. Because of her fame in Vocaloid and her popular choice for composers-there really is like a zillion of Miku songs at this point. Miku is a world icon, she is literally the go-to idol for just about any kind of music genres and emotions-portrayal. The other Vocaloids have also been gaining attention, and more songs had been produced for them, but even after nearly a decade, no other Vocaloids could even come close to Miku. Every chart you see, especially for those which ranks the most songs composed by a Vocaloid-Miku will always be the top of the mountain without a doubt, which really speaks for her star power.
Fandom engagement and emotional investment may be important in Vocaloid, but all these Vocaloid mascots also have very beautiful, appealing designs-which would also explain the massive amount of artworks which would take flight moments later. Of course, Miku’s designs strikes all my moerogenous (see what I did there?) zones as well-twintails, zettai ryouiki and an unique color design. She easily possess a thousand faces too, hell, even millions, due to the legion of fans worldwide personalizing her. She is an idol who can be snarky, tsundere-ish and depending on some song lyrics, can also have extremely good stories.
Miku’s personality is interpretative, that means she can insert herself into any of my waifus and would even convince the hell out of me. She encompasses all of my previous eleven waifus, she encompasses every Best Girls I know, she encompasses every characters alive. This 12 Days list isn’t exactly consecutive, but if it is, she would have nailed the top spot without a doubt. Miku is everything, she is the goddess, she represents the world, she embodies passion and love, she embodies fun and creativity-she is the ultimate waifu.