Monday, March 30, 2020

RIP Shimura Ken


The corona virus today took one of Japan's greatest comedians, Shimura Ken. I bloody love the above video where he sneaks into the hotel bedrooms of the Morning Musume members and great fun ensues.


One could say TsujiKago with any old man is comedic gold but Shimura Ken is the best oyaji to do it. Can't find the third part of the video. I'm pretty sure I've got the whole thing saved on my HD but I can't find it.

I love his schtick of playing a creepy, non-threatening oyaji who touches the boundaries of inappropriateness to give us plenty of comedy.  RIP Shimura Ken, you are a bloody legend.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Innocence - Enzai Bengoshi Episodes 1+2

Innocence as can be surmised from the name is a legal show about proving people's innocence which is interesting considering Japan has a 99% conviction rate.

You've got a main character Kurokawa who is apparently poor because he lives in the office and does not have money but obviously spends a lot of time and money on hair products.

The police and prosecution are of course totally inept as per 99% of jdoramas and Kurokawa proves the innocence of his clients with Fujiki Naohito doing some science experiment.

Innocence bored the hell out of me from Kawaguchi Haruna's not being a believable lawyer to how uninspired everything is. This show is for people enjoy crap like Kimutaku's Hero. Boring.

If you are after a lawyer show, try Kioku or Zainin no Uso.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Before the Coffee gets Cold Jmovie review

It seems to be the season of time travelling stories for me. First it was the blah Theseus no Fune and the ok High Position and now Before the Coffee gets Cold.

Before the Coffee gets Cold is set in a cafe where people can time travel according to four strict rules:

1) You can only people who have been to the cafe
2) You can't change the present
3) There is only one seat that can time travel and you have to wait for the customer to leave the seat
4) You have to finish the coffee before it gets cold or else you will be stuck in the past

Before the Coffee gets Cold is what I would call an ensemble Jmovie with a few touching sub stories leading up to the touching main story. The last one of this type I saw was Kimutaku's Masquerade Hotel which I saw on the flight back from Japan.

The other equivalent would be those Hollywood movies named after a public holidays with a lot of famous faces on the poster. I've never seen any of them but I'd imagine they'd be similar with Before the Coffee gets Cold in that it just oversentimental smaltz.

I like heatwarming stories but when you have 4 stories one after another asking the audience "awww, isn't this touching?", I was tuning out after the second story. When a movie tries too hard to make me feel something, I go the opposite way.

That being said, I don't hate Before the Coffee gets Cold. I find it boring but its not made for me. Its made for people who enjoy crying for whatever reason.


I think it would have been better if it were shot in a more gritty, realistic way like a WOWOW dorama with a different lead. More like Shinya Shokudo aka Midnight Diner. Ultimately, Before the Coffe gets Cold is like Arimura Kasumi's acting, way too sweet with artificial sweeteners when it needed to be a bit more bitter like coffee. Movie is available at Avistaz.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Top 10 feel good jdoramas to watch during corana quarantine


Everyday its bloody corona this and corona that. Supermarkets are empty, its feeling like a zombie movie in real situation, everyone is stressed and there are all sorts of quarantines going around. What better way to spend all that time at home than watching jdoramas?

Below are 10 jdoramas I think are great for corona quarantine. The most important quality I am choosing these shows for are feel good. We want to freaking feel good, forget real world problems and lose ourselves in some jdorama goodness. So no dark and depressing shows.


1) SUMMER SNOW

The show that got me hooked on jdoramas as well as Hirosue Ryoko at the height of her powers. Feel good show with great cast including Oguri Shun and Ikewaki Chizuru. You will fall in love with all the characters and it will warm your heart.

2) IRYU (all 4 seasons)

The best jdorama soundtrack ever meets the coolest surgery series ever. The names Asada Ryutaro, Ijyuiin, Miki and Noguchi sensei will forever be etched in your memory. So freaking good you will wonder why Japan would want to make any more surgery shows after this? The best part is that you get 4 seasons of really good stories.

3) JUKEN NO CINDERELLA

Once upon a time, Koizumi Kotaro was a good actor and he was in a feel good show with Haruna playing a student at a part time high school who he decides to tutor to get to university. Nothing is more feel good than underdog trying to do the impossible. I am not sure this has been subbed though.

4) KISEKI NO HITO

So freaking heartwarming it might keep corona away.


5) LOVE SHUFFLE

The writing by Nojima Shinji is so good and funny. Need to rewatch it one of these days.


6) TIGER AND DRAGON

Kudo Kankuro is a genius. You will laugh and laugh and laugh.



7) MANHATTAN LOVE STORY

Kudo Kankuro is a genius. You will laugh and laugh and laugh.


8) GOLDEN BOWL

Talk about feel good sports jdorama with romance thrown in. The only bad thing is that the subs aren't very good. I should probably try to find a better rip cause this show is so rewatchable.

9) COFFEE-YA NO HITOBITO

I didn't give Coffee-ya a must watch but its in my feels so much better to watch than it has any right to. I can just rewatch this show every year.


10) PRIDE

Takeuchi Yuko at the height of her powers and a macho sports dorama which is rare. If you want a touching, testosterone filled jdorama to keep corona away, this is it. That's it for my list. Plenty of other shows that deserve to be here but these 10 are great for making you feel good.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Tenki-yoho no Koibito Episodes 1+2


WHAT IS IT?

Tenki-yoho no Koibito is a 3 way relationship dorama between Sato Koichi who works at the weather bureau and two women, Fukatsu Eri and Inamori Izumi who are not who Sato Koichi thinks they are.


Sato Koichi thinks that Inamori Izumi is Yukawa Sachi, the love specialist radio DJ who actually is Fukatsu Eri. Rather, they both make up Yukawa Sachi because Fukatsu Eri is the brains and voice while Inamori Izumi is the face and experience.


WHAT'S GOOD ABOUT IT?

Love the cast and its fun watching a very young Sato Koichi and Fukatsu Eri and Ianomori Izumi look the same as they do now.

The script is by Okada Yoshikazu of Saigo Kara Nibanme no Koi and its got the 90s early 2000s dorama feel.


Usually doramas about mistaken identities usually make me cringe but not Tenki-yoho. May its because it doesn't feel to contrived to me.

Finally, Yonekura Ryoko is in a very minor non speaking role which is just the way I like her.


WHAT'S NOT GOOD ABOUT IT?

Nothing, though it will probably end up being a pretty standard 3 way dorama.


WHO SHOULD WATCH IT?

People who like shows from the 'Golden Age' of jdoramas and people looking for something different.


HOW DO I RATE IT?

Watchable. Thanks for Saltine for subbing it at d-addicts and you can get the raws from nyaa.

Monday, March 09, 2020

Naruto Hichou Episodes 1-3

After watching Hakuoki, I decided I needed more jidaigeki in my life and settled on Naruto Hichou, another Yamamoto Koji show. Similar to Hakuoki, Naruto Hichou is about lots of people either trying to get a couple together or keep them apart.


In Naruto Hichou, the couple is Yamamoto Koji's Gennojou and his childhood friend Chie who I do not care about because there is another woman is much more developed characterwise in Mikaeri Otsuna, the professional thief trying to be good.

Mikaeri Otsuna is the best character in the show but unfortunately, she's not going to get what she wants, which is Gennoujo and she's going to get harassed by Magobei until one of them dies.

Gennojou is not a well written character IMO. He's whole MO is that he had to kill his master and his master said that swordsmanship is for killing people (duh) and that Gennojou will walk the path of inhumanity. In terms of his personality, he's kind of a blank slate and he just feels way too generic.

There's a fair bit of action in Naruto Hichou with plenty of useless ninjas and the end of episode 3 introduces us to a new member of Gennojou's harem.


I don't hate Naruto Hichou but I don't really find anything I particularly love except for Otsuna. Its a pretty standard adventure jidaigeki. I'm going to see this to the end because there's not that many jidaiegeki's out there.


The series has been subbed by evasive at d-addicts and the raws can be gotten from nyaa.

Thursday, March 05, 2020

High Position 1986, Nidome no Seishun Episodes 1-6

From the derivative time-slip suspense of Theseus no Fune, we have another time-slip jdorama this season with High Position. High Position is the story of a 46 year old married man who hits his head in a soapland and is transported to 1986 to relive him high school days!

Let's start with the bad news. Normally with time-slip shows, the main character goes back in time with all the extra knowledge and experience and the fun for the audience is watching the main character apply that know-how.

The main character in High Position sucks. He does not act like a 46 year old adult with a child who has had years of working experience dealing with people and the opposite sex.


He acts more like a loser who just finished high school and just travelled back in time. In other words, he acts like a 16 year old in a 16 year old's body instead of a 46 year old. Except for the sex bits but.


And now for the really bad news; for a show set in 1986, there is a lack of pantsu shots and burumas. I know we are in the era of you too movement but goddamit where is the innocent but slightly sexual images from the 80s?

The good news is that its still fun with the main character getting a second chance with his high school crush and his would be wife as the third person in the triangle. The show keeps showing flashbacks to their failed marriage so will he fall in love with her again or go on a new path in life. Also, there's plenty of showa era music to enjoy.


Ultimately, High Position is a time slip show that could have been really good but settled for watchable. High Position is for people who are nostalgic for showa era stuff like me or just want a simple time slip high school romance show. The raws can be found at nyaa and narai225 is subbing it at d-addicts.