Friday, November 30, 2007

Iryu season 2 Eps 1-4

Iryu is definitely in my top 10 best doramas ever. I rewatched the 1st season some weeks ago and its still damn fun to watch. Its like a fantasy type story where heroes come together to defeat a great evil except its about medical professionals who join forces to perform a difficult surgery. The show had it all, excellent casting, story and most of all best jdorama soundtrack ever next to Long Vacation. In fact I would say that its the music that propels it from good dorama to classic.

Japanese must think all who use the inverted comma sign are evil! Oops, did I just spoil the surprise?

It was with great anticipation and trepidation that I waited for season 2. After all, the only dorama that was better than its first season is probably Salaryman Kintaro. Most sequels are just a retread of the 1st season. Not to mention the fact that the first season of Iryu had set the bar so freaking high. The first episode is a reintroduction to the members of Team Medical Dragon as they gather to do another super complicated surgery that defies logic. First thing I noticed was that they've kept the same music and added 2 new tunes to the soundtrack. 1st rule of sequels: don't fix what's not broken.

Best jdrama villain ever, besides Sakurai-san from Densha.

Ep 1 also serves to introduce Uchida Yuki as a journalist with a hidden agenda and bring back Noguchi sensei, the villain from the 1st season. Its so fucking good to see Uchida Yuki back on the screen and Noguchi is one of the true villains of jdoramas. None of the 'I've got a bad childhood/used to be good guy/system has corrupted me crap'. No freaking debating with the heroes on who's got better morales. Noguchi is a villain because he believes in his goal and he will do anything to achieve it except engage with a stupid debate with our heroes. I'm kinda disappointed he didn't bring back his 'entlassen' catchphrase though.

Unfortunately Arase and Miki are relegated to minor supporting characters, for the time being..

Ep 2 is where we finally see where this series is going. Basically Asada, Ijyuiin and Fujiyoshi get kicked out of Meishin to Hokuyou, a hospital that Noguchi plans to use to dump the undesirables from Meishin. Instead of retreading the 1st episode what we have now is a bigger challenge where Asada has to assemble a new team and try to save a doomed hospital. Immediately, this makes Asada & gang the super underdogs and gives the viewer more reason to cheer them on.

Hhhmm, Otsuka Nene....

I mentioned Salaryman Kintaro and its similar to season 2 where they get kicked out of their company and decide to set up their own to fight back. The writers for Hana Yori Dango 2 and Hotman 2 should take note. Move the story forward, not rehash the same stuff. Looks like there is hope for jdorama writing after all. Plus, there are 4 new characters who may join Team Medical Dragon so there's the underdog with hidden past and unrealised potential stories to do.

I'm glad Kitou sensei is back. Natsuki Mari is always entertaining to watch.

I'm so stoked that finally there's a freaking dorama for me to get real excited about. If you only watch one show this season, make it Iryu!


あ―ろん said...

Shit this is good...luckily finished my spm liao.
The new soundtrack that plays at almost the very end of every episode is just attractive lah. Makes me want to watch the next episode.
I am currently playing back the soundtrack writing this hahaha.
Can't wait for the next episode as well as the OST !!
Spirit got piano/guitar version too

Jung said...

Maybe it's because I never bothered watching Iryu 1, but I just couldn't get into the first few eps of this series. I think the writer overdid the tag-team surgery thing where the docs faced one tough situation after another while operating on multiple patients, and it seemed to go on forever. At any moment, I was expecting them to say, "Oh hey, while we're operating on this deathly ill pregnant woman, why don't we also perform liposuction and rhiplosty as an extra challenge!"

Give me a freakin' break! But hey, now you got my all curious about Salaryman Kintaro... considering there were 4 series, I'm surprised it stayed under my radar!

Anonymous said...

I've watched up to ep. 8. Trust me, Iryu 1 is far superior. Iryu 2 is not based on the manga at all, and so far it's nothing more than a highly predictable sappy melodrama with decent direction and stylish camera work. The only thing that can match up to season 1 is the soundtrack, although some of the music is also recycled from season 1.

Radicalpatriot said...

I have to check out these doramas, sooner rather than later.

username said...

noguchi best jdrama villian?
the title should belong to anzai manami!! never had I been so enraged by a drama villian that I wished she was gang-raped

back to iryu 2, the operations in this season are way more cool and interesting than iryu 1... more female casts too. all other aspects, it loses to iryu 1
just my 2cents