Lyrical Deep Dive: 認めてくれなくたっていいよ - 190 Jewels, one chosen

Posted on Sept. 28, 2022, 4:33 p.m.
10 min read

認めてくれなくたっていいよ is the all member song from the Jewelries 004 series. It was first debuted at the Cinderella Girls LIKE4LIVE #cg_ootd DAY 1 as the final song before the encore. This song is composed by Keita Inoue (MONACA) and has lyrics written by our favorite resident lyricist Yashiro Yuta who was absent for the 7th anniversary song of starlight stage.

Keita Inoue is relatively new to the IDOLM@STER franchise, and their first song in the frannchise was VOY@GER, chosen as they wanted to pick a person who had not yet touched the franchise to compose a song about the future of IDOLM@STER, but that's about that song. This song is something quite a bit different from that. It's very pop, kinda cute, very fashionable and quite a bit more contemporary compared to VOY@GER which is obviously far more electronic. Still the song turned out quite good and even though I don't talk about the music too much here, I think that the composition is done well and helps elevate the listening experience.

Next thing to cover is the song title, 認めてくれなくたっていいよ (lit. "its ok if you don't acknowledge me") which is a rather unusual title of a song. Some might describe it as sad, like its some sort of break up song. Others might look at the phrasing used an associate it with tsundere style characters. We have to look at the title for what it is, the "acknowledge" or "recognize" emotion captured by the word 認めて is tied to the sense of recognition that gives you that feeling of validation. To some extent there's something miserable about saying that your efforts going unrecognized is okay. The main thing to note here is the attitude reflected in the title of the song, there's just that bit of character in the song title, we can get to everything else in due time.

Also bonus shoutout to the game for scheduling this so close to the CD release that I had to draft this writeup initially with unofficial lyrics gathered from whatever people have picked up by ear which I then checked through myself. Expect further revisions when I or some other source gets their hands on the official lyrics...

好きな 色で 星は 光る
In the color [you] like, the star shines

The song starts with these 4 phrases, interspaced by silence, a very unique start to the song. Also this is one of the few songs in Cinderella Girls that has vocals start on the first downbeat of the song but does not have an extended live intro to cue the performers to the start time.

If you recall some of the iconic animations related to the game content, there's an awful lot of stars involved, not counting an entire song named Star!! and several others with the word star in them. The subject here is implicit, so it could be in the color that you like, or in the color that it likes. Do stars have color preferences? Well the subject of individualism is whats going to be at play here.

ああ つまんないなあって 真っ赤な靴の踵鳴らす
女の子の魔法 フルオーダーだから
どんな装いで どんな振る舞いで どんな自分だっていいでしょう
私はもっと自由だ 知らない人まで知っちゃって

"Ah.... so boring" taming the heel of a bright red shoe
Girl's magic is full order thats why
In whatever dress, whatever behavior. Whatever myself is good isn't it?
I am more free! Even people who I don't know know that

This song has a bit of an attitude, from the title right down to the lyrics, the song itself has some personality to the words. This is probably intentional since that's pretty much one of the themes. This part has a lot of "don't tell me what to do" energy to it.

You can see from this section setting the tone, the whole song has a lot to do with the idea of unique individuals, and the characteristics of each different person. It's okay to be assertive about wanting to preserve your individual unique traits, after all if you homogenize all the idols then the world of Cinderella Girls would be very boring if everyone was the same. I mean you can look at other franchises where you have same-face and same-eye syndrome everywhere in the artstyle to get a feel for what that would feel like.

世界中の宝石たち たった一つ選ぶなら
世界一単純な基準 for me, or not ただそれだけ (それだけ)

The jewels in the world, if [you] chose just one then...
The world's most pure basis "for me, or not" just only that (only that)

Because this is definitely not VOY@GER 2, we get an actual build up section in a pop style song with a bit of that low pass filter. We would like to remind you that this is indeed the Jewelries album song, by mentioning the word jewel (in kanji).

But there's a more important theme here, because this is where the song opens up what it is all about. Who are the jewels in the world? What does it mean to choose one? Well, if you read the title of this article you probably know what we're about to go into here. The jewels of the world are the 190 different idols in the game (if you want to be pedantic like the "Over 200 idols to produce" note found in some CD albums, be my guest but I'm going to use 190) and from this 190, you want to choose one to produce. This is the essence of the song.

The second line is also pretty simple, except the engrish part which introduces some ambiguity. This is generally pretty sound advice when it comes to choosing your tantou idol. Are you for them or not? As in, are you motivated to support them in their journey? The song calls this the "pure basis" on which the choice is made, and honestly it's quite reasonable to see why.

The whole song revolves around this choice, the reason its made and what are the effects of this choice. After all, when you choose 1 in the 190, there are 189 other losers.

認めてくれなくたっていいよ 愛してる(愛してる)
私の好きと あなたの好きが 違ったっていい
その日が来たらきっと 笑ってハグして泣いちゃう

It's okay if you didn't approve [me], I love you (I love you)
What I like and what you like, it's ok if it's different
[I] want to meet at a place where [my] like and [your] like overlap (want to meet)
That day when it comes, surely [we will] laugh, hug and cry

So this is the name drop and also why the title is called what it is. When you think about it, this song is about the idols that you didn't choose and this is their message for you.

You didn't choose them because you have different preferences, but they don't resent you for it. They still look forward to the day that they can work together with you, and when that day comes it would be like an emotional reunion.

Small bonus trivia, line 2 and line 3 uses 好き together with particles と and が in the same order, but sentence 3 does not have any context to the individual 好き occurrences so it comes off as "like and like is..." if viewed alone, but the existence of a pattern allows you to pull an inference from the previous line about what the two "likes" are which is clever writing. This is how we came up with the interpretation in the translation.

ほら 「こういうのでしょ」って そのお気遣い遠慮します
女の子の魔法 バリエーション無限
もっとシンプルでも もっとゴージャスでも もっともっとファビュラスになれる
私の可能性なんだ 限界なんて知らない

Hey! "It's this way isn't it?" That concern should be restrained (alt: I don't appreciate your concern)
Girl's magic has limitless variation
However more simple, however more gorgeous, able to become more fabulous
Surely that is my potential. Things like limits it doesn't know.

The bit of character in the lyrics returns again. This part is different but its quite similar to the very first verse. Don't tell them what to do, let them be themselves. This is the secret to achieving their limitless potential.

An interesting way to think about this is that you don't have to force yourself to like each and every single girl. The tension would probably not benefit anyone in that case.

あれが最高 これが最強 みんな好き勝手言うけど
宇宙一標準な基準 for me, or not ほら楽しもう(楽しもう)

That is the best, this is the strongest, everyone says as they please but
The universe most normalized standard "for me, or not" Hey, let's enjoy (let's enjoy)

People have a lot of perspectives on what is the best, but that's okay. We've already established the idea from the first half that the only thing that matters is whether or not you're going to be committed to letting the jewel you chose shine. Hopefully the process of achieving that is also an enjoyable one.

見過ごしてくれちゃっていいよ 愛してる(愛してる)
眩しすぎちゃって 気になっちゃったら どうもすみません
好きが重なる誰かに届きますように 歌おう

It's okay if you overlooked me, I love you (I love you)
[If I'm] completely too dazzling and catch your eye, I'm sorry [excuse me!]
To the you that discovered me, thank you! (Thank you!)
To deliver to someone who's like overlaps, let's sing

Do you ever have the moment where you thought you made up your mind and then end up either picking up an additional idol or swapping later on? Well then this is the chorus for you!

Line 2 is very cheeky with the "hehe my bad" kind of "sorry" energy at the end. A lot of the seiyuus who performed this song at the cg_ootd live mentioned that this is their favorite line. It's rather cute. The whole line is about how sometimes you might chance upon content of another idol and it manages to captivate you. Speaking from experience, this happens a lot more than you think, especially if you're particularly open minded with consuming content. But you know what? It's perfectly fine to change preferences and to discover new things that you like. After all, the girls won't resent you for keeping them waiting. This is one of the other benefits of having 190 different idols, seasons of our life come and go and throughout each different season there is a different girl that can bring you through each one if you so choose.

好きな 色で 星は 光る
好きは 好きだ だから 自由だ

In the color [you] like, the star shines
Like is like, therefore freedom

This is the opener again, but instead of the silence we get a bit of a guitar and drum fill.

The stars shine in the color that they like, in other words, the individual preferences of each idol is what makes them stand out and shine.

Liking the things that you like makes you free, giving you the freedom to express yourself in the way that you want to. This liberating feeling is what allows people to perform their best and should be no surprise.

私の好きが 私を作る 単純すぎるかな

What exactly is my essence, I thought
What I like makes me who I am, or maybe thats too simple-minded?

There's quite a number of idols who go through that self discovery phase as part of the small bit of character development that happens across the years. Often the question that would have to be addressed is this. What is it that makes me, me? The answer for this question is quite important, and is also something that can only truly be answered by the idol in question.

But this to me is my favorite part of the song, as everything quietens down you get to ponder the important question and think it through. Then the song drops the most innocent, pure line and leave you to think about it. Throughout this song, we discuss things about likes and personality and how it brings freedom. We talk about how individuality is an important trait. Now we just need to answer the question. In some cases, thinking about the question as a process is more important than the answer itself. The answer here is uncertain, but a pretty good one, coupled with that little bit of doubt at the end. It's quite an endearing line.

認めてくれなくったていいよ 愛してる(愛してる)
私の好きと あなたの好きが 違ったっていい
その日が来たらきっと 笑ってハグして泣いちゃう

It's okay if you didn't approve [me], I love you (I love you)
What I like and what you like, it's ok if it's different
[I] want to meet at a place where [my] like and [your] like overlap (want to meet)
That day when it comes, surely [we will] laugh, hug and cry

In the chorus repeat, the lyrics 重なった ("to have overlapped") are emphasised by trumpet hits, which are not present in any of the other choruses. A rather neat detail that mixes up what is otherwise a repeat of the first part.


For my benefit let's shine

We have come to the end of the song here. The big takeaway from this song is how it's a commentary on the franchise in general. With 190 different idols there are a lot of different personalities. In the same way, the producers of the world, you and me all have very different personalities and preferences as well. There's something for everyone in the sea of jewels, and it's okay if it's a different one. There really shouldn't be a pressure to like the same thing as other people do, or to try and look for similarities in places where there aren't. Each girl was designed unique for a reason, to suit the large variety of people who would end up playing the games of this series. We should learn to respect each other's choices and recognize each girl for what they are, and not what they're not.

In a way this song is really cool because it manages to be a commentary about Cinderella Girls while dodging a majority of the standard fare Cinderella themes that we see in all the other major songs like anime OPs, anniversary songs etc. If anything, considering the way this game works and how much of the franchise is fundamentally based on the principles covered here it's almost fascinating how it took us 11 years to cover this topic in a song. The lyrics are very simple, but thats because the foundational basis is very simple, and so is the theme. That's all there is to it and the lyrics are very clever for that.

Now, because I had to rush this one out of the door to meet the event that initially thought would end up being a Jan carnival song, the hint left in Sakura No Kaze about the next writeup still applies. Until then, I hope you've taken something good away from this song. It's a really great wholesome tune that serves as a nice perspective or maybe even guiding advice on how to enjoy the franchise.

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