Crystal Kay is the runner up on season 1 of The Masked Singer Japan

Crystal Kay is the runner up on season 1 of The Masked Singer Japan | Random J Pop

Some of you may already know...or some of you may not given how difficult it is to find anything of The Masked Singer Japan online unless you're watching the shit directly on Amazon Prime Japan...because Japan. But Crystal unfortunately didn't win. But she did make it to the finals, and was a runner up. The winner of the first season of The Masked Singer Japan was Bird, who was revealed to be Anna Tsuchiya, a fellow Japanese singer of mixed race who has also collaborated with Namie Amuro. It was nice to see 2 women make it to the finals, although them being singers always meant that they were going to sail through.

Miss Television's final performance was of the late Miki Matsubara's city pop bop "Mayonaka no Door (Stay with Me)", which like "Plastic Love" saw a resurgence in popularity decades after it initially released, thanks in part to YouTube. Crystal absolutely killed it, as she had done each and every week. Once again having me ask the question 'Why was shit like this not on I Sing!?'.

The lack of city pop on Crystal Kay's cover album I Sing was so glaring and I can't make sense of it. That album really did need a song like this. City pop wasn't just great because the songs were good, but because the genre and the time period of its initial popularity offered a greater range of female vocalists than there had ever been in Japanese music. There wasn't an insistence on singing high and sounding cute, as would become a trend and archetype of J-Pop in the following years. There were women with a range of different voices occupying the space, with deeper and richer tones, things which were embraced and on trend in genres such as Enka. Crystal doesn't just sings, she SANGS, and city pop suits her preferred and most natural vocal placement these days, which is far lower than what she's known for commercially. Crystal has such a beautiful tone which just gets richer as time goes on, and songs like "Mayonaka no Door (Stay with Me)" really brings that out. Also, city pop has enjoyed a resurgence over the past few years. So Crystal's team not making her cover a song like "Mayonaka no Door (Stay with Me)" is crazy to me.

Crystal Kay is the runner up on season 1 of The Masked Singer Japan | Random J Pop

When it came time to guess the identity of Miss Television, a-chan and Kiko both guessed Crystal Kay, because they have taste. Nocchi guessed Meisa Kuroki, whilst some other guy guessed Kumi Koda, and not as a joke. Crystal really stood on that stage and gave pitch, tone, texture, range and consistency - things which Meisa doesn't know how to give, and things which are like Mario Kart random item boxes for Kumi Koda. 


One thing that the post de-masking of Crystal revealed is how well she is actually known in Japan and amongst her peers - something which is so easy to forget given where her career is now. When it came time for the judges to say their pieces, a-chan cried (as she always does). And whilst I can't fully understand Japanese, I THINK a-chan said something to Crystal along the lines of how she grew up listening to her, something about inspiration, and something else about chasing dreams. We know a-chan lives for bitches who can actually sing, so hearing that she's a fan of Crystal Kay doesn't surprise me. a-chan saying this (or what I think was this) is also a reminder of just how long Crystal has been in the game. Crystal Kay was 7 years deep into her career by the time Perfume had released "Polyrhythm". When Crystal had released her 8th studio album Color Change!, Perfume hadn't even released Game yet.

The unfortunate thing about Crystal's stint on The Masked Singer is that it's already like it never even happened. Crystal's Instagram account, where she's incredibly active, features no trace of her ever been on the show. And it's not a embargo or exclusivity thing which has prevented Crystal from posting about her involvement on The Masked Singer, because judges Miyavi, Kiko Mizuhara and Perfume have been posting constantly about the show. And 2 days after the finale aired, winner Anna Tsuchiya had dropped a photo dump of herself on the show. Yet Crystal? Nothing but an Instagram story showing what looked like a press pack for the show that any random YouTuber coulda gotten.

BAY-BEE. What are you doing!? You shoulda been blasting the posts about your stint on The Masked Singer. Not only because it was huge, but because you KILLED every single performance and showed a side to yourself that even as a fan, surprised me. Like, how are you not gonna post a clip of yourself performing an Ayumi Hamasaki song? Bitch. That's easy views and likes. It makes no sense.

Also, The Masked Singer isn't filmed on a rolling basis, and the show isn't aired live. The Masked Singer Japan finished shooting in February 2021, so everybody done knew how it all panned out and when each episode would air. So Crystal's team had more than enough time to plan single releases, promo, social media posts and all the things in advance. And yet...

Gurl. Fire the whole management and marketing team.


Here's Crystal performing "Mayonaka no Door (Stay with Me)" without her mask on.

It's really weird that the show made the masked singers perform the same song they'd performed only moment prior, because it makes it abundantly clear that the performances were not live. I'm not particularly fussed about the performances not being live on this show. It makes sense given some of the crazy masks that the contestants have to wear, and it allows for better quality control of performances on a show like this. It's not like Perfume are going to have an opinion on it, and we all know Crystal can sing live. But it would have been so much better to have the finalist perform de-masked to a different song, or one they'd performed in an earlier episode. And why did they have the host just stay on the stage the entire time?

📺 Watch Crystal Kay fuck it up on The Masked Singer: Miss Television's performances

🎧 CK Playlists: This is Crystal Kay | Crystal Kay: Ballads
📀 CK Special Edition: Euphoria, a Crystal Kay dance album

💿 CK album reviews: I Sing | For You | Vivid | Shine | Spin the Music | Call Me Miss... | All Yours | Color Change! | 4Real | Crystal Style | Almost Seventeen | 637 -Always & Forever- | C.L.L. ~Crystal Lover Light