Another unusual beauty contest makes news in Japan.
In Japan, if there’s an excuse to hold a beauty contest, or a contest of any sort for that matter, there’s a good chance it will become a reality. In the past, we’ve seen “Miss & Mr. Aoyama” crowned at the country’s oldest university beauty pageant and a competition at an all-boys’ high school revealing the prettiest “girl” at their school.
Now, people in Japan have been turning their attention to the annual “Mr Freshman” contest, which recently unveiled its winner in the search for the country’s number one “ikemen” or “good-looking” first-year male high school student.
The event was recorded on video for everyone to watch on YouTube.
The winning student this year was Hiromu Kuroda, who was selected as the winner from 12 finalists on stage at Zepp Tokyo in the city’s Odaiba area on 8 August. The contest was one of the main events at the 2017 Ikemen Festival, which celebrated artists, models and brands related to the Japanese concept of ikemen.
The 15-year-old received a red gown, trophy and a framed illustration featuring characters from popular manga and anime series One Piece as his prize for taking out the number one spot in the competition.
After being announced as the winner, the student from Yamagata Prefecture was interviewed on national television by one of the country’s major networks, Nippon TV, during a segment on the popular “Pon!” talk show.
さやか@TiZ (@sayaka0629_Tiz) August 09, 2017
▼ Coming in at second place was Reia Omiya, who also received a red gown and trophy.
The first and second-place winners will now go on to compete in the national Mr Male High School Student competition, which is made up of first, second and third-year high school students. Kuroda’s aim is to be successful in that event too, but for now he’s happy to share the joy over his recent win with his 8,000-plus followers on Twitter.
高1ミスターコングランプリ👑 頂きました！とっても嬉しいです！ グランプリになれたのは 皆さんの支えがあったからです！ 本当にありがとう！幸せです！ 毎日を大切に！自分らしく！👊 この機会にもっと成長して 夢を叶えてみせます！ 応… twitter.com/i/web/status/8…—
黒田 昊夢【くろだひろむ】 (@Hirokuro0910) August 08, 2017
With more than 2,000 entrants in this year’s Mr Freshman contest, the two will face even more competition at their next event. And if they’re keen to continue on the beauty pageant circuit once they graduate, there’ll be more for them to aspire to again, with university competitions like the Mr Bishoujo Contest crowning the “prettiest” boys online.