Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Trying to give Silent Poor a second chance

Warning: If you love Fukada Kyoko, please stop reading at once.

After watching the movie In the Wake, I felt compelled to watch a social welfare jdorama. So much of jdorama is not just set in fantasy realities but are usually are successful, people who are not struggling to get buy.

Take for example Koi Nante, Honki de Yatte do Suru no? a jdorama about 3 trendy 20 somethings. There is nothing about living in a shared house and trying to make ends meet. The struggle is not live but to make it to the confession scene in the end.

My first thought was Silent Poor which I remember clearly dropping after the first episode because of Fukada Kyoko. However I was sick of jdoramas with characters living in houses your average Japanese cannot afford. I decided to disregard Fukakyon's bad acting and just watch it for the social welfare stories.

Fukakyon is so so bad. She has two facial expressions; a smile and this sad frown where she is trying to show that she is thinking but it looks like there is nothing upstairs. She just cannot do natural facial expressions like everyone else in Silent Poor. Its as if she is a barbie character living among humans.

If I have to describe Fukakyon's acting is that its like she's playing an idoru character acting in movie. Its feels like there are two layers of fakeness to her 'acting'.

The writing for Silent Poor is skin deep. It touches on things I want to watch about like hikikomori and homelessness but simplifies things too much. It is so bad.

Absolutely do not watch this show. Really, really bad. If you want to watch a social welfare jdorama check out Kenkou de Bunkatekina Saiteigendo no Seikatsu or Caseworker's Diary which I had completely forgotten about. 

Sunday, June 26, 2022

My Family jdorama review

My Family is yet another family kidnapping whodunnit dorama ala Shinhanin Flag starring the one Johnny who can act Nino as the CEO of a mobile game company, Tabe Mikako as the wife and Tamaki Hiroshi as a cop.

On a side note, Tabe Mikako and Tamaki Hiroshi were once in one of my favourite jdoramas ever, Shikaotoko Aoniyoshi. I need to rewatch that show one day. Anyways Nino and Tabe Mikako's daughter gets kidnapped, police get called in and the story becomes a parents of kidnapped daughter story vs police as Nino just wants to remove any police interference.

I kind of like the parents vs police angle as it is not something you usually see. In the middle of the series, the story does go in a WTF direction that makes Nino's character look very stupid but it sort of fits with the theme of the show of anti police involvement in ransom kidnappings.

The big twist near the end was an even bigger WTF which I don't even know what to feel. Sometimes its hard to have an opinion about everything. My reactions to the twists was 'Eh? Whatever..'. I like the best friends of Nino who are a lawyer and ex police officer turned bodyguard.

In summary, I really like the talent involved in My Family and I like that it is doing a twist to your usual kidnapping jdoramas but I am not sure how I feel about the twists. Its kept watching until the end and I don't hate it.

I like My Family more than Shinhanin Flag and the question is should you watch it? My Family is not a must watch and if you like the cast and you are in the mood for a whudunnit then give the first few episodes a try. I give it a kinda watchable rating and you can download it hardsubbed from Blitz fansubs.

Sunday, June 19, 2022

In the Wake jmovie review

I went into in the wake with no knowledge of the movie other than seeing Abe Hiroshi and Satou Takeru on the cover. 

Abe is a police detective investigating two murders in Sendai and Satou Takeru who has just been released from prison is the main suspect.

As Abe chases after the truth, In the Wake goes from a serial murder movie to a movie about the touhoku earthquake and social welfare in Japan.

I rather enjoyed how the movie managed to incorporate interesting and serious issues into the structure of a serial murder mystery.

My only criticism is that the ending twist was a bit too much for me. I don't hate it but I don't like it either. Its a revelation that you can't be too sure about.

Watchable movie and the story definitely stayed in my mind long after watching especially in regards to social welfare.

If you are an Abe fan and feel in the mood for a serious murder mystery, In the Wake is for you. I got the raws from dramahd and the subs from avistaz.

Thursday, June 16, 2022

Koi Nante, Honki de Yatte do suru no? Episodes 1~5

Koi Nante, Honki de Yatte do suru no? is the new Hirose Alice show about 3 super stylish 20 something women and their love life.

Horise Alice plays the main character Jun who proclaims in the beginning of episode 1 that being single is great. She's never been in love and I know you are thinking she's the female Kuwano Shinsuke, she's doesn't seem to enjoy single life like Kuwano in KDO and spends a lot of time fretting about how she's missing out.

I do not enjoy the Jun character because while she is successful at work, emotionally she is like a middle school girl which the show explicitly states is part of her character. I also dislike the lack of believability around Jun's plate making business job. Its just feels so generic.

Anyone June is drawn to this waiter who is super nice to every woman he comes across and I do not care about the two main characters. They are annoying and I want to fast forward their scenes so I can watch the other two character.

The second main character is Kyoko who is in a marriage with red flags all over it. How her supposedly best friends are unable to see the red flags is unbelievable. The writer should have made the super husband addicted to online gaming instead of a bland husband with no dedication to his wife to make it more believable.

Anyway Kyoko is slowly drawn to a mysterious cook played by Fujiki Naohito.

Luckily there is the third character to save Koi Nante and that is Arisa who is in a papakatsu relationship. Arisa regularly receives expensive gifts from her papa but one day runs into a combini worker played by Ichitaka from I's. The combini worker seems to also have an interesting secret.

Koi Nante, Honki De Yatte do suru no? is a very shoujo love story and I was ready to drop it but I kind of want to see what the secret of Fujiki Naohito and Ichitaka are. I can't really call it watchable because there a lot of things about the show that bother me. Meh. 

If you are not the target audience, there is not much here for you. Koi Nante needs a lot more humour because Jun is just annoying.

If you are still interested in watching, you can get the subs from subscene or you can get hardsubs here

Monday, June 13, 2022

Tantei ga Hayasugiru jdorama review


Tantei ga Hayasugiru as the name suggest is about a detective who is too fast at solving crimes or rather in this show, assassination attempts.

Hirose Alice lives a normal life with her stern mother figure Mizuno Miki when she finds out she is going to inherit 5 trillion yen from her deceased father that she never knew.

What this means is that everyone from the evil Daidara family is out to kill Hirose Alice before she can get the money. Of course, they all try to make Hirose Alice's death look like an accident and the fun is watching the detective Chikumagawa played brilliantly by Takito Kenichi figure out and stop all the assassinations.

Tantei ha Hayasugiru is a pretty funny show and a lot of it is thanks to the chemistry between the 3 main characters. Chikumagawa is the zany annoying bodyguard and Hirose Alice is the girl trying to live a normal life while being a target of assassination and Mizuno Miki is the stern maid she is always fighting with.

I am a fan of Hirose Alice from Shitteru Wife but she's got good comedic timing and expressions. She also wears a lot of t-shirts with English on them. I wonder they have any meaning or is it just random?

My second favourite part of the show is that the detective actually gets revenge on the would be assassins. One thing I hate about stories in Japanese entertainment is that the good main character will not injure or kill the bad guys. The good guy is defined by lack of vengeful actions which sucks because no one is without malice especially when there is a threat.

Not in this show. I love that Chikumagawa actually hurts the bad guys and turns their tricks against them. He doesn't kill them but he injures them that they need to go to hospital. So refreshing. I love his give to Caesar line every time Chikumagawa gives the bad guy their comeuppance.

I quite enjoyed Tantei ga Hayasugiru. It got a bit tired towards the end but the chemistry between the 3 main leads pulled me through to the end. Season 2 just started and I am scared they are unable to capture the magic from season 1. Tantei ga Hayasugiru reminds me of Trick with funny and flawed main characters and lots of explaining about tricks. Watchable and thanks to HPriest for subbing!

Thursday, June 09, 2022

Invisible episodes 1~2 review

Episode is yet another high concept crime jdorama from TBS, not exactly my favourite genre. High concept that is. I would watch any crime dorama from WOWOW any week.

Shibasaki Kou is Invisible the crime coordinator who helps bad guys commits crimes. Somehow Invisible has a change of heart and chooses Takahashi Issey to help her clear unsolve cases and criminals she used to help.

I will accept any premise along as it leads to an exciting and riveting story is Invisible is neither. Its a combination of bad writing and pretentious acting set in a bizzare world where I can't take seriously and every little detail seems wrong.

In other words, Invisible is for people who enjoy shows like Siren and Bloody Monday. High concept and completely devoid any realism.

Its a shame because Shibasaki Kou has been in a two decent shows of late; Saka no Tochuu no Ie and 35-sai no Shoujo and is no longer in my can't act list.

I have decided getting angry at jdoramas is not good for me and have dropped it.

Sunday, June 05, 2022

Jyanai hou no Kanojo jdorama review

Jyanai hou no Kanajo is an affair dorama with two big problems. The first has to do with the name and concept of the show. Jyanai hou means someone who is not the main character like the straight man in a manzai group who is not funny or the least idoru looking person in an idoru group.

The show is called jyanai hou's girlfriend because the main character played by Hamada Gaku claims to be a jyanai hou because he is boring associate professor at a university.

This is a depressing statement because anyone married to Konishi Manami with a child and a high paying job in a big house is winning at life and not a jyanai hou. He is in the upper level of society.

Hamada Gaku's character is not getting any sympathy from me because he is a chicken shit bare has any libido.

The second problem with Jyanai hou no Kanojo is that there is no lust, the most necessary ingredient to an affair jdorama. Its like those love story jdoramas for 13 year old girls that is so platonic and has no lust the most a couple does is hug.

Those type of no lust relationships don't work for affairs. The blame also goes to the casting of an idoru in the role of university student seducing the associate professor.

That being said, is Jyanai hou no Kanojo a complete failure? No, I managed to finish it thanks to liking the intro dance act as well as the best friend and mother who are both experts at affairs and provide much of the necessary humour.

Jyanai hou no Kanojo is also a very well shot series and the directors know how to make Yamashita Mizuki look seductive and they have put some effort into making the show look good.

At the end of the day, Jyanai hou no Kanojo is an affair dorama without the fire of an affair. Its more like a Yamashita Mizuki is seducing the audience rather than Hamada Gaku.

Meh dorama unless you are a Yamashita Mizuki diehard. I applaud the effort and they really tried to make it entertaining but you can't make a PG rated affair dorama work because affairs cannot be PG.