Monday, August 11, 2008

Taiyo to Umi no Kyoshitsu ep 1

Oda Yuji in Evil Dead remake?

The greatness and influence of GTO dorama cannot be underestimated. It is one of the few jdoramas I would not hesitate to call perfect. Superb casting, acting, music, supporting characters, jokes and the right amount of cool. It is so good that it is the template upon which to base teacher jdoramas. It basically 'updated' the Kinpachi sensei formula to the cool teacher. The only show I've seen to veer from the formula is Jyoou no Kyoushitsu and probably the closest succesful replication would be Dragon Zakura.

I still haven't finished watching the Sailor Moon dorama yet....

Along comes Oda Yuji's attempt at the GTO formula. I always found him to be an overrated acting. Never could really understand the success of Odoru Daisousasen, not that I didn't enjoy it and Last Christmas. That said, this marks the first time I've seen him play something more than just your typical nice guy. In Taiyo to Umi no Kyoshitsu, Oda Yuji is Sakurai sensei and for once, he doesn't seem like a former biker/yakuza etc. Sakurai is seems to have some screws loose which may be caused be his excessive tan. He is forever smiling but he definitely isn't stupid. In fact he seems pretty smart, its just that he's on a different wavelength from everyone. I like that Sakurai is different from other GTO clones as it takes more than one sentence to summarise his character.

Shinobu with the guy who's too old to be in high school shows.

Of course, like all GTO clones, everyone in the school is against him with the exception of the hot teacher who happens to be Mop Girl/Sailor Venus Kitagawa Keiko! While she most definitely is of the age to be a 1st year teacher, she doesn't look like one. Not as bad as Aragaki Yui in Code Blue though. That's the thing about acting in the shadow of GTO, who can compare with Matsushima Nanako's Fuyutsuki sensei. The fact I can remember her character's name speaks volumes about her acting.

At least strip to your pantsu ffs!

Quickly, Sakurai sensei gets involves with the two main students. You know how it goes. He gets them to his side and the rest of the series is about him helping out everyone else and getting them on his side. The ending is almost a copycat of GTO's hammer through the wall scene but nowhere as cool. If there is one thing this show desperately needs, it is humour and having high school guys who look like girls is not funny. Kita Yoshio plays the evil President who is boring and just wants the school to concentrate on studies.

Kita Yoshio playing Liar Game? Imagine negative Yoshio manipulating everyone. :)

ZZzzzzz. I hope the writer is well aware that it is the villain that makes the hero. It would be ok if Kita Yoshio's posse didn't overact so much. At least that secretary from Liar Game is in it. I hope she gets more lines than she got in Hatarakiman. She seems to be getting jobs since Liar Game and yet they just want her to stand/sit around and look very pretty. Can't complain I suppose but ffs someone give her some actual dialogue and a real character to play. Interesting teacher/hero vs boring/super stereotypical villains does not make good show though.

Shinobu chan!!!!!

We've got the main girl from Life which is good. I'm very excited Shinobu from Kita Yoshio is here. Unfortunately, she's a supporting character which means that most of her lines will be expository and she'll just be plot device. I really hope the makers of Taiyo to Umi no Kyoshitsu took a good hard look at GTO. Make the students stand out and lots of humor.

She's probably surprised that the mop girls subs are still stuck at ep 5.

Talking about 1st episodes is hard. I always look at other shows of the same genre, see what they've done different and hope that I'd have a good time watching the rest of the series. Flawed as Taiyo to Umi no Kyoshitsu maybe, I still enjoyed it. Maybe its after watching 6 eps of crying wussies in Rookies any teacher dorama looks good. The worst thing is that after typing all this, I really feel like watching GTO......

8 comments:

Jung said...

lol your mentioning of fuyutsuki sensei brought back a lot of memories of GTO, like her ogling over Yutaka Takenouchi poster or her slapping Onizuka after looking at the S&M poster.

I too thought the breaking the sign at the end of ep 1 with a chainsaw was too much like GTO. But I do like the fact that the students in this show are not a jaded crybabies who are anti-adult / teacher for unrealistic reasons.

The writer for GTO focused on the characters, and each of the main students had his/her story was self contained in one episode. There was no real larger plot brewing in the background.

But in Taiyo, it seems like something's cooking in the pot. So that's another point of differentiation from GTO. I just hope whatever they're cooking doesn't turn out to be a batch of nasty haggis.

Jung said...

Just watched through ep 3...

Hrm... kind of getting out of control...

In the next episode, I fully expect Yuji Oda to diffuse a 1024 bit encrypted nuclear bomb from detonating in the middle of Tokyo...

jostein said...

Just thought I'd mention I also saw AKB48's Maeda Atsuko in this one.

Akiramike said...

Jung, sounds like the writer can't think of how to make the show and villain more realistic.

Thanks for the tip Jostein! Can't believe I missed her. If only Haruna were in this show as well. Was too busy cursing the designer for making the female uniform top too loose.

Opp said...

Oda's far better than an overrated actor. I suggest looking at his earlier works (not just Tokyo Love Story). Furikaereba yatsu ga iru is a good example of his acting. Mahiru no tsuki (with Tokiwa Takako) is also worth a look at. I have to say his more recent series don't add up to his older ones.

Anonymous said...

the first few episodes were ok and i really thought the show was going to end up as some really typical teacher-student show. the show gets pretty dramatic and really good in the later episodes -- probably around ep 6. very different from GTO. o! and since you seem to like Yoshitaka Yuriko a lot, she gets featured in the episodes a lot more too later on.

Anonymous said...

I recommend you keep watching this jdorama. I mean it is somewhat cliche, but then again which school drama isnt? [except Dragon Zakura which i absolutely LOVED]. In the later episodes, some unusual stuff does happen...which might change you opinion.

Anonymous said...

haha i totally agree with you about amateur actors, namely kitagawa and aragaki, being casted in so many dramas. frankly its annoying. morever, at least act in a convincing role. its pathetic!