Thursday, November 18, 2010
Iryu 3 eps 2-4
Things are not looking good for Iryu 3 right now. The first problem is lack of a distinct villain.Yes, Noguchi was the bad guy for seasons 1 and 2 but he hasn't done anything bad. Sure, he wants to make Team Dragon irrelevant but whatever his reasons might be, Noguchi is not doing anything bad or underhanded. His plan is too basically bring in Kuroki, the Asada Ryutaro of catheterism and make Meishin a catheterism specialty hospital. Its become a sort of surgery vs catheter debate but nothing has been put forward to argue against the new emphasis on catheter treatment at Meishin.
The only thing mentioned was that it can be high risk but are its not like the operations that Team Iryu has been have been a walk in the park either. One might question the storyline that there are no surgery patients in Meishin as surgery is still necessary for a lot of cases like tumours etc but that can be explained as patients not coming into Meishin for anything other than catheter treatment.
As I've said many times, the hero is as good as the villain and right now, there is not villainy for Team Dragon to fight against. In fact Kato was looking very much the villain in ep 3 with her frustrations and trying to force the girl to go for surgery instead of catheter treatment. Having a hatred for surgeons, doing motion training in the basement and wearing black does not make Kuroki a villain. This lack of black and white distinction has left me indifferent to the story. I love grey area morality and characters but Iryu is definitely not a character based dorama. It would work if Iryu 3 were a copy of Shiroi Kyoto and the emphasis was on the friendship/begrudging respect between Asada vs Kuroki but its too late for that.
Asada just keeps quiet because there is nothing for him to say, only that doctors must act in the best interest of the patient. This is where Miki is sorely missed. I can just imagine her asking Asada whether he would be ok with Team Dragon being broken up again. Finally we have new kabe onna nurse from USA but there's no background story on her and she hasn't added anything to Team Dragon in terms of chemistry. Also alarming is the new intern Fuyumi not having any impact on the series yet in the series besides acting as plot narrator sidekick with the long hair dude.
The basis of the fun in Iryu 1 and 2 were the team members and their stories. Each having their own personality and redemption stories and coming together in the end in a feel good team moment. Right now its just Noguchi having his own way and Ijyuuin deciding to wear black. Hhhm, where have I seen this before? Oh yeah, season 1. Zzzzzz. Talk about your petty jealousy issues after all he has been through with Asada but I'll be happy to accept it if it will lead to good stories. However, it is still not too late. Its only been 4 episodes and some of my favourite doramas have taken 6 episodes to get running.
First thing they have to do is get cracking on the new intern Fuyumi and the new nurse. They better be awesome stories and I want to see lots of cool operations from Team Dragon working in the ER. Actually I'll accept generic stories as the music will elevate the mediocre to awesome. We need lots of cool operations in the ER especially with Asada utilising unconventional methods. The lack of an operation in ep 4 really hurt the series. Catheter procedures do not make exciting viewing, not even with Iryu's music.
Second thing we need to do is make Noguchi/Kuroki the obvious villains here and the only thing I can think off is them overemphasising catheter operations and purposely hiding failures. Anything to make them look bad so that the audience can cheer for Team Dragon again. I can understand the writer going a different route for season 3. He probably didn't want to rehash the previous 2 seasons with formation of new Team Dragon and difficult operation every episode but the writer left out important elements of the formula which made the series so fun to watch, namely the coming together of a team and the simple feel good cool doctors doing impossible operations with evil Noguchi sneering in the background.
edit: Just watched ep 5. Really nice ending that got me pumped up for ep 6. Looks like the series may be taking a very foreseeable turn way too early in ep 7 but I think I know where this is going to lead.