Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Kiina eps 1-6

I wasn't interested in Kiina last season because I felt it was too soon for another Kanno Miho dorama after Hatarakiman. One look at the synopsis tells me its Hatarakiman as a cop. The chances of a Japanese cop shop turning out to be decent is pretty rare and I doubt they'll be able to produce the magic again so I kinda ignored it, until now.

Actually Kiina has more in common with Galileo than Hatarakiman. She is in charge of a two person unit called bepan and gets all the weird police cases. She's not extremely smart like Galileo but she possesses a photographic memory. She can walk into a crime scene and recall its details later.As she gets strange cases like ghosts, poltergeists, fortune telling and urban myths, she solves them by going to the library and reading 1 book every 20 seconds until she can absorb every information on a particular subject to solve it. With Kiina's great powers of memory she could be like the only person in the world with 20 different degrees but she's just a lowly cop.

Please arrest me!

Every episode starts the same; strange incident occurs and Kiina postulates a theory that the anomalies happened as claimed citing some historical examples. In the middle, she will do an almost complete explanation with leaving the last bit of revelation for the final act. Kiina, is not a mystery dorama. The list of suspects is always very short and the criminal usual evident from the get go. Like Galileo, its about explaining how the strange phenomenons occur which bring us to our main problem; its very inconsistent and if you know the science/reasoning then the episode becomes very boring.

Buta is starting to become the next Kita Yoshio....

Lastly, the final act has this tendency to be melodramatic which really just kills the mood. Its like some stupid producer mandated that they must try to pull at the audience's heartstrings at the end but ultimately it feels too coerced and fake. What's been keeping me watching is Kanno Miho and the slow building background story. Sawamura Ikki is criminally underused. His character needs a bigger role in the series to give the audience reason to care about the brooding Kazuma.

Someone give him a dorama to carry. After all the supporting roles, he deserves it.

Kiina is a barely watchable show that might be saved by its slow cooking background story and Kanno Miho's acting. Stand alone stories are very hard to get consistently good, let alone detective ones. Only watch if you have nothing else to see.


Jung said...

You're exactly right about this being a Hatarakiman as a cop.

What really baffles me is how many cops/detective/ shows there are each season. Take this season alone. I count minimum 6:
1. Hancho
2. Rinjo
3. Kyoto Chiken no Onna 5
4. Boss
5. Meitantei no Okite
6. Mr. Brain

I'd say this is 4 too many for each season... I think this must be an easy genre to score decent ratings, because people's tendency towards crime shows. It's also harder to screw up in terms of writings.

What a shame. It robs time away from writers and producers from coming up with more original shows.

Anyway, it appears that Kanno has been totally typecasted into a strongheaded opinionated character. I hope she can break out of her mold in her next show.

thanks for the writeup. I quit after 2 episodes, but later questioned my decisions because its ratings were very high throughout. But it sounds like I didn't miss much.

Anonymous said...

I like Kanno Miho, so I tried to put up with it, but I just couldn't. The show is just really dumb, and every time she does that godawful transformation sequence it just irritates me

Anonymous said...

I'm disliking godhand teru for the same reason, its rather dumb and in every episode there's that godawful transformation sequence where he's naked with the burnt handprint...

japan should stop calling this stuff drama and start calling it sailor moon...!

maiku said...

This drama fits into my category of 'dumb but watchable'. You don't cringe at the quality but you don't expect it to make any top 10 lists either.

The cases were very simplistic with no twists or surprises to speak of. (Upon meeting the first suspect you can pretty much assume he or she will turn out to be the killer.) The science isn't particularly deep, nor is the character development.

Ok, I'll admit it...Miho Kanno was the only reason I stuck with the show. I've been a fan ever since Koi Ga Shitai. She's good, but she isn't a miracle worker. The fact that it was only a 9 episode series helped too. I doubt I would have made it through 11 or 12.

For me the biggest mystery was how Shinichiro ended up on crutches. Maybe I spaced out on the explanation?