Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Aishiteru eps 1-3

Getting cross-eyed at a funeral...

When a jdorama gets subbed late in the season it usually means one thing; it probably is a good show and the subbers want to share it with everyone. Aishiteru pretty much went under the radar for this season. Jdoramas need housewife shows like people in the north pole need refrigerators. Yet, it is the housewife genre that continues to surprise me with shows like Saito-san, Scandal and now Aishiteru.

One thing I love about housewife/family doramas are the milfs.

If Scandal proved one thing, its that murder + housewives can make an interesting combi. Aishiteru is the tale of two families; the Ozawa family, who's son, Kiyotaka is murdered in the first episode and the Noguchi family, where the only child Tomoya is accused of the murder. Yes, Aishiteru is look at a child murder by another child. It pulls no punches and doesn't take sides. Both families are presented as real people and there is no good/evil. Just two families caught up in an unfortunate circumstance that they must face.

I don't think that's a natural double eye lid....

The only character who sort of plays a villain role is Tomoya's father. He is presented as a more selfish individual who puts his interests first but I'd rather see him as a realist. He is more concerned with the repercussions of Tomoya's actions on his family than Tomoya's situation. After all, Tomoya's fate is out of his hands now. The Noguchi family has only a bleak future to look towards. Luckily, he shows a bit of a conscience throughout the show and I hope that he is not relegated to typical selfish husband role and he gets a chance to shine. It doesn't help that Tomoya's father has an unsympathetic face and there just doesn't seem to be any chemistry between him and Tomoya's mom.

The roles of the mothers are the type of roles that I think any actress over 30 would kill for. One as the mother of a murdered child and one as the mother of the child murderer. These are roles that run the whole gamut of emotions and the series hinges on the audience sympathizing with both parents. Kiyotaka's mom goes into shock for two episodes and hopefully it doesn't last too much longer. The next stage would be anger and it would be interesting to see emotions of the Ozawa family come to boil.

Iryu 2 reunion!!!!

The tagline of this dorama is forgiveness and I think this show will be about the families getting to know each other and the Ozawas realising that the family that they hate are real people just like them. It would be easier for their hate to continue to burn if the child murderer came from a broken family of drug addicts. What I love about this show is that it is realistic. The trend this season is cop shows and it just make me pissed of that the Japanese can't do realism in cop shows with the exception of Rinjo. There is also the issue of what really happened and how Kiyotaka was actually killed.

There's something about japanese women in mourning clothes.... :)

I hope their is not twist where the death was just an accident or Tomoya didn't do it. I really want to see all the raw emotions between two families come to head instead of an easy answer where Tomoya wasn't really responsible. I'm hooked on this show because there is no easy answer and there shouldn't be one. I really hope that the show doesn't try to simplify such a conflict. I want to see burning desire for revenge and a mom wanting to protect her son at whatever the cost. I want to see a tragedy bring two families to breaking point. I want to see shouting, screaming and crying over irreconcilable emotions.

Kawashima Umika will always be the little girl in Iryu 2 who yelled out 'super doctor'!

After all, conflict is what makes a good story and Aishiteru is full of it. Big thanks to Chuks for subbing this show. Looks like this is turning into a decent season with Shiroi Haru, Rinjo and Aishiteru. Definitely a must watch.


Jung said...

"There's something about japanese women in mourning clothes.... :)"

sick... lol...

don't get your hope too high for Boku no imouto... after the main mystery is solved in ep 4, the storyline gets somewhat irritating... if that even makes sense.

Anyway, I have to see what the fuss is about with this show. The rating is through the roof. The most memorable scene in episode one was when the detectives were over at the house, and they asked the mother if her son was wearing a blue jacket... That moment of suspense, and the expression on her face until they broke the bad news was just pure acting gold.

Anonymous said...

The drama is actually adapted from a manga, if you can imagine. Despite the good rating (still can't compare to those of BOSS or MR. BRAIN though) and good word of mouth, I'm still not sure I want to watch a drama w/ such a heavy subject.

Despite all the bad things I've said about BOSS, IMO the last several episodes (starting from ep. 06 and excluding ep. 08) are actually quite decent and watchable (if you ignore the police procedure part). At least no major plot holes and comparable to Rinjo, but ep. 10 went all 'Infernal Affairs'/'The Departed' (with the signature roof top scenes), and it'll be interesting to see how the writer ties up all the loose ends in the finale, which will feature one of the (if not THE) biggest star wattage in a single episode in the history of Japanese drama.

Akiramike said...

Jung, now you got me undecided on Boku no imouto dvd. I think I get what you mean. After the truth is revealed it just waiting for the show to finish? Maybe I should just watch it raw and save myself $30.

Thanks for your recommendation of BOSS. I was thinking of dumping the show but I'll see what happens in ep 6.

ニタちゃん said...

Agreed with you on the review. I've completed the show..and really have high respect for both mothers in the drama. A must watch!