Sunday, March 22, 2009

Hitotsu Yane no Shita season 2

Someone should go back in time and tell Eguchi Yosuke how crap the script for Triangle is.

Managed to acquire English subbed Hitotsu Yane no Shita s2 from Marspeach through trading. Its a very bad quality tv rip from what I assume is Hawaiian tv but I'd sacrifice video quality for subs any day. Its basically like watching a jdorama off youtube. With this, probably the only old show left I want to see subbed would be Tadano Hitoshi seasons 1+2.

Matsu Takako = guarantee watchable jdoramas.

With season 2, the writer Nojima Shinji (Love Shuffle) is faced with following up one of the most succesful jdoramas ever and he does it by taking the kitchen sink approach; ie throw every conceivable jdorama angle/story and fit it in. There were times when I felt like I was watching a Korean dorama with a very big difference; the very fast pacing and great character arcs.

Koume has really blossomed in four years.

Nojima Shinji somehow managed to make all the pieces fit. There's your fair shair of cheesy and corny lines but there are some pretty memorable ones as well. Not to mention there are some simple overarching themes such as the one on human selfishness. The kitchen sink approach should fail but Hitotsu Yane no Shita manages to keep its head above water. IMO, there's no better example of a great writer than someone who manages to elevate a potential train wreck of a dorama.

OMG, Candy from Fighting Vipers. If only Sega would be FV3.

As I said earlier in my review of the raws of the early eps, Matsu Takako is a godsend to season 2. She just fits in with the Kashiwagi family and the sassy disposition of her character Miki is a great contrast to the more subdued characters of the two sisters, Koyuki and Koume. The addition of the effeminate Masumi however is a big head scratcher. Besides his story in ep 3, there is no reason for him to be in the rest of the show. His role as story facilitator can easy be assumed by various members of the Kashiwagi family at different times. He is basically dead weight and I was hoping all series he would die in a car accident or something.

Fumiya getting some action.

Masaya (Galileo) is missing for most of the show and its fun to see Kazuya assume the mantle of second brother. The black sheep of the family comes into his own in season 2 and not to mention a very strong story arc with Matsu Takako. Every family member gets their time to shine. Koume may have gotten a bit shortchanged but I'm still in awe of how much stuff they've managed to pack into a measly 12 episodes.

Sakai Noriko = goddes of jdoramas

If there's one big complaint about season to is that An-chan makes some pretty bone-headed decisions in this show. Its pretty obvious that the decisions were more to do with lengthening storylines and pacing but stupid decisions just make him look like a gutless person no matter how the writer tries to spin it in the script. Besides that I have no other complaint except perhaps the ending.

Best reason for this to be remastered on dvd.

Notice how the writer is the same as the one who wrote 101 Proposals? Well, its got an even worse ending. Stupid twist for the sake of a twist and completely destroying two fucking seasons of build ups. It nearly made me wish I never saw season 2 and just had the memory of season 1. They tried to make it work with a little foreshadowing and hints but it just felt to sudden, too unnatural.

In the end, if you enjoyed season 1, season 2 is still a must despite my complaints. This is the jdorama to end all jdoramas. All sorts of cliches and plots mixed with some of the best jdorama actors ever in a pretty coherent package. There will never be another show as big as Hitotsu Yane no Shita season 2 and be as good. One of the ways to judge how good a show is, is whether you remember the names of characters and I know the names of all members of the Kashiwagi family.


Joe1991 said...

Wonder if anyone who has these would be willing to through together an .srt *hint*hint*

Akiramike said...

If you have good quality raws and timed subs, I would be happy to transcribe.

smile said...


I just finished the second season of the serie but in Japanese and I don't understand a word. So, can you tell me where I can watch or buy the serie with English Subtilte ? I don't really care if the quality is bad.
Thanks a lot.

Akiramike said...

Your best hope is dvd trading like I did. Don't think it the VHS-rip hardsubbed verion has ever been uploaded.

Akiramike said...

Try contacting Marspeach if she still trades.

lane99 said...

Saw the first three episodes (which have English subs) of Season 2. Can't find the rest of the episodes with subtitles, so I won't be able to watch the rest of the series.

Would you tell me how the series ends? It seems everyone was surprised by it. And most didn't like the ending.

Akiramike said...

@lane99 the ending is An-chan didn't get the girl in the end. No idea why she went with Fukuyama Masaharu. Looks like the series has been uploaded to youtube with much better quality but no English subtitles.

lane99 said...

Thanks, yes. I found a complete written summary of the series, so I was able to read the ending.

And you've got a wealth of interesting info on your blog about J-Drama. THANKS for it.