Sunday, October 29, 2006

Bengoshi no Kuzu ep 5

That looks like Wakui Emi!

Best ep so far in the series and the show gets the shot in the arm that it needed: Kuzu gets a daughter! Kuzu is a great character but he just doesn't play off well against Takeda san. Takeda's too naive and their good guy/bad guy act just gets old.

Race Queens galore!

The whole getting a daughter thing brings out Kuzu's softer side and allows him to do one thing: be more immoral. The writers can push the boundaries without making Kuzu look like a villian. And Mizuki-chan can be used as foil for the underlying flirting between Kuzu and Kato-san.

This ep reaffirms that this is Kuzu's show and everyone else is irrelavent. Hopefully they'll do an episode featuring Hoshin Aki's character but I doubt it. I'm looking forward to seeing Kuzu play the reluctant father for the rest of the series though I fear it'll be minor. My guess is Kuzu will use her and play up the single father role to score some chicks. :)

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Jdorama ramblings 24/10/06


I don't care that it was written by Kitagawa Eriko. Orange Days was so pedestrian and Beautiful Life was like 6 years ago and had more to do with chemistry and acting. Well, I would say 50% of how good a show is depends on acting and chemistry. That Kame fella sucks. From Sapuri and this show, its bloody obvious that Nobuta was a decent show in spite of him. And that fella has crap screen presence.

The best thing about ep1? Seeing Ayase Haruka on her knees.... hhhhm I wonder if this position was in the script?

From the crappy CG to cheesy slow mo stuff, this show just screams boring. Its such a waste that Toda Erika is a supporting character in this show. Ayase Haruka needs to stop doing trendy doramas and do something completely different like Euto Aya's Shimokita Sundays. Please don't waste your bandwidth.

Verdict: I've lost 1 hour of my life I want back.


So far so good. Not as good as I thought it could be and not as bad as I feared. I have to say, I hate the kid who gets Shida Mirai pregnant. He's a fucking idiot for not appreciating free money. Hello? People have to actually work for a living and you put on a black face when you get free cash? WTF is wrong with you? Seriously, someone throw him out of his hourse and let him see how easy it is to make a living. Ppl who have no respect for money piss me off.

I don't really like how they implied they had sex just by them hugging. I mean ffs, there's a huge gap between hugging and actual intercourse. Still, I doubt they could get away with showing anything between minors on prime time tv. I have to say my biggest pet peeve is the casting of the dude. He has zero chemistry with Shida Mirai. Get the Yusuke from Jyou no Kyoushitsu.

Still, acting is great and I'm glad to see the guy who plays Shida Mirai's otousan in a serious supporting role. He's always playing comedy support so its great to see his acting chops. Still to early to judge this show but so far its been very watchable but nothing special. I need to see more misery!

Verdict: watchable


Wheeee, the return of disabled doramas. They're much better than fatal disease doramas. IMHO, there should be a limit of at most 2 fatal disease shows a year. Better yet, let the Koreans have a monopoly on it. FDD (fatal disease dramas) are just too boring. Once you've seen one, you've seen 99% of them.

This show feels a little bit disjointed. Some parts are really good and feel like one of those artistic/indy movie feel and some parts are so pedestrian jdorama. eg the work clothes for the zoo staff are too clean. Some of the cinematography is nice but sometimes it reverts back to typical camera work. Generally acting is strong, pace is ok and I'm looking forward to see how this story will go.

Verdict: watchable

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Nodame Cantabile

Nodame Cantabile is one wacky, zany show music. You've got your two characters with very different personalities, played by the bad hair dude from Last Christmas and Ueno Juri. Ahh, Euno Juri stole the show in Swing Girls and in this show, she plays Nodame, the energizer bunny of the show as opposed to our 'cool' hero. Watching Swing Girls, you could tell she has the X factor and its pretty obvious in this show. She doesn't have the gravure looks or supermodel body but goddamn she can act.

I like how she gives Nodame her own unique mannerisms like her hunchback piano playing or her baka looking smile and child like innocence. While this is obviously based on a shoujo manga, I find that its very enjoyable and not too shoujo, unlike Hana Yori Dango. In fact, I would equate it with KareKano or Yawara, shoujo shows that are watchable by guys. Or maybe its because of the fast pacing of the show or the abundance of slapstick jokes.

Then there's the swing girl aspect of the show. A bunch of underdogs are going to get together to form a band. Its this part of the show that I'm more concerned about. Japanese shows are damn good at doing underdog stories but at the same time, it can bevery cliched and boring like My Boss My Hero ep 8.

But I'm pretty sure it gonna work cause there's a lot of characters and they'll be plenty of stories to tell. Speaking of characters, that Strazemann character is loud out funny, especially when he tries speaking Japanese like a gaijin and Nodame ends up speaking gaijin nihongo as well. Toyohara Kosuke and Nishimura Mashiko play two music teachers and hopefully both of them will get a lot of comedy stuff in this show.

If you're watching only one show this season, its gotta be Nodame or Sailor Fuku to Kikanjuu which I will talk about after the subs come out. Did I mention how happy I am to see Ueno Juri in a dorama?:)

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

My Boss My Hero 6-10

There's only one word that can capture the dazzling radiance that is Aragaki Yui and that word is moe! Everytime she's on screen, the whole world just seems a bit brighter. Which is also why eps 6 and 7 are the best of the series. Ep 6 is basically about the Agnes Pudding and the Aniranger and the fact that this ep has 2 'punchlines' makes it even better. And ep 7 is about Makky taking the Agnes Road with Umemura.

I'm mailing the writers to get rid of Sakura-nantoka and put more schoolgirls in this show.

However the ending of ep 7 basically spells the end of the Makky-Umemura storyline, thereby rendering her into a background character. Ep 8 is your bloody generic class gets together to play music story. That ep was not even half as good as swing girls. And the last ep brings us to the predictable ending.

IMO, the 2nd girl from the right is pretty hot.....

Forgot to mention one of the most ingenius ideas from the show; the Yakuza election! They could have milked the idea for one whole episode. All they had to do was to tranpose all the dirty stuff that people do during normal elections and have the yakuza do it. Bribery, phantom voters and interest groups applying their own pressures/donations.

My biggest beef with the show is still the lack of Aragaki Yui screen time. The generic happy ending is so not happy for me. They could have done so many good stuff if Makky and Umemura got together. Basically after the middle of ep 7, I knew it was all downhill for me. Still, Nagase Tomoya did a very good job as usual.

There are a lot of funny moments but I fast forwarded a lot of parts as well. So final verdict is the more Nagase Tomoya and koukou doramas you've seen, the less impressed you'll be with the writing.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

My Boss, My Hero eps 1-5

Didn't watch this show when it came out earlier cause it seemed like I wouldn't enjoy it. My bro finished watching it and said it was not too bad, so I decided to give it a try. MBMH uses the Gokusen concept except that instead of the Yakuza heir being a teacher, this time he's a student. Yes, a 27 year old masquerading as a 17 year old high school student. Nagase Tomoya does the same yakuza role from Tiger and Dragon except his character is much dumber.

Yes, join the yakuza get your hands on lots of bikini girls.

He's so baka that he needs to get a high school cert before his dad wil let him take over the business. Yes, throw your brains out of the door. This show is about laughs and while there's quite a lot of them, there's a lot of misses. Ok, let's get all the negative stuff out of the way.

There's a lot of stupid and juvenile jokes. The jokes have a rough 50% hit rate which is pretty ok but it has a throw every joke they can think of and hope some sticks feel rather than a well crafted comedy. Pacing is slow. Its already ep 5 and we're basically at the set up face.

I hate that bishounen sidekick. I basically fast forward everytime he shows up. The teacher is not hot. Seriously, how fucking difficult is it to find a gravure idol who would make a sexy teacher? They really need to get casting people from the AV industry.

Pics just can't do her justice...

The one damn good thing about this show? Aragaki Yui. OMFG, she is so smoking kawaii. Didn't really notice her in Gal Circle (too busy perving at Toda Erika) or Dragon Zakura (likewise with Hasegawa Kyoko and Nagasawa Masami) but goddamn she the perfect picture of your japanese schoolgirl. If a 27 yakuza lust over high school girls then goddamit, I should have the right to.

In the end, I just feel the show's writing is not focused and the jokes are a bit flat and they could have had much more and better quality eye candy. There's too much of a been there seen that feel, not that there's anything wrong with it but the show's just no funny enough. However, I must give props to whoever came up with the Agnes exercise. Its one of the funniest things I've ever seen.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Central Ikegami Police 5

If you asked me a few months ago which gravure actress I would like to see in a jdorama, I would say Ogura Yuko. Now, I'm not so sure. For those who've never seen the Central Ikegami series, think of it as a petty crime tv show. Instead of being hardcore drug addicts and serial rapists, the criminals come from unfortunate backgrounds or are doing crime to pay for hospital bills etc.

No, you're a criminal cause u got fridayed.

This is no NYPD Blue. I mean if this show is the true reflection of crime in Japan, girls would be free to walk around in micro minis in Roppongi at night. Hhmm, actually they do. But anyway, you get my drift. Its tame. What this show is exactly is time filler.

I've got a great idea for season 6. Tsuji turns up as the evil, long lost twin sister! :)

There's nothing special about it but there's nothing really bad. Sure they're plotholes and stuff but it doesn't matter cause the story's not serious anyway. I think the show has lost a lot the chemistry, especially with the departure of Mizuno Maki. She is one hot milf.

hhhmm, I wonder what secrets Ogura Yuko is refering to ?:)

What started me on this series (I think I started on season 3) was Kago Ai, who plays the Police Chief's daughter. They've finally given her stuff to do besides greeting her dad at the end of every episode. Oh yeah, they finally revealed the mom too and I think she's perfected casted. Can't believe they had 4 freaking seasons before finally getting her on screen.

Yes, if you've been on this show for 5 seasons and still make limited appearances, you're basically fucked.

L.O.V.E. lovely Yuko!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And Nakazawa Yuko has a brief recurring role too. Seeing her just makes me long for the old days of momusu. If you're looking for some filler show which won't bore you like Taiyo no Uta. Give it a shot. Just be warned that it won't thrill you either. Oh yes, Ogura Yuko. Her donkan act really didn't fit into this show. Maybe her fakeness just doesn't fit into the jdorama world. Or maybe I'm just longing for an Isoyama Sayaka dorama.

Because you look like an aho

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Fukuda Saki - Goodby My Love

When I first heard this song last weekend, I knew it was going to be in my playlist for a very long time. I desperately searched for the PV. Who was this angel singing this folk ballad type song? Found the PV and was in for a shock. A 16 year old kid playing a guitar singing such profound lyrics? And she was from Bishoujo Club 31? ugh. The very boring PV is set in front of Tokyo Wankei and is shades of Taiyo no Uta.

Basically, this song should have been sung by a woman, not a girl. Still its probably the best song I've heard this year and I recommend you get it from J-Spot's music rotation.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Bengoshi no Kuzu ep 2

There's two things that attracted me to this show; firstly its a lawyer show. The only legal show I'd watched before was Hero, which I thought was crap and I really want to see a decent show about the Japanese legal system. Secondly, Kuzu means trash/scum. Why didn't someone think of this before? We should have some spin-offs with the Kuzu name. Imagine Kyoushi no Kuzu or Oishasan no Kuzu.

And the one thing that made me want to blog about episode 2? Its Mitsuya Yoko! Yes, the girl who played Yuki in KDO ep 9. Woohoo. I love how she keeps turning up in my life. :) Before we get to more Mitsuya Yoko, I'll just give an overview of the series.

Toyokawa Etsushi (Aoi Tori) plays the main character, Kuzu. The sad thing is, he's not really a lawyer without morals. Rather, its the new lawyer, Takeda who is naive and too trusting of clients. Takeda is suppose to be the viewers' point of view but I just find to be too idiotic. Which kinda defeats the point of having your main character having the name of Kuzu.

Rounding off the cast, we have Takashima Reiko who plays another lawyer who has a history with Kuzu and Hoshino Aki who plays the secretary. Normally I'd be very happy to see the legendary gravure idol in a dorama but she's a bit too old to be playing one of those cho-kawaii characters. IMHO, she'd be more sexy dressed in as a typical OL.

Now back to more Mitsuya Yoko. In ep 2, she plays a juvenile named Mako-chan who lures salarymen into love hotels and then takes their money without providing service. Oh yeah, her character's acted in an AV before. Of course the innocent Takeda believes everything Mako-chan says while Kuzu tries to convince him overwise. And in gratitude to Takeda, she gives him a copy of her AV dvd. :)

You can pretty much guess how the show's going to end. After two episodes, I'd haveto say this show is watchable but nothing special. I just feel that there's so much potential but the stories and characters are too dumbed down. Still, after KDO finished, I find it very hard to watch doramas without fast forwarding and ep 2 kept me glued to the screen only because of Mitsuya Yoko.