Wednesday, January 19, 2011


 During the course of filling up missing episodes in my jdorama collection, I have come across many shows that for some reason I have ignored, or not heard about and Aikurushii was one of them. I'm pretty sure I've seen the torrent at d-addicts before and the reason I didn't want to watch it was probably me not being interested in a dorama with the bald dude from Shall we Dance (Takenaka Naoto), Ayase Haruka and Saru Lock from the emo crying show Rookies.

 Actually I probably couldn't imagine Takenaka Naoto playing the father in a family dorama after watching him as the overacting comedy relief character in so many shows. His overacting has become an unfunny parody of itself in shows like Tsuki no Koibito and I didn't have the confidence that he could carry the role of a serious father.

Smart women like this are a rare breed...

I decided to give it go and Aikurushii starts off like your typical family in the countryside story. You have your noisy father and son fighting and about someone who took a big dump that couldn't flush. Ugh. Then it leads to a 3 minute lecture about feces and a misunderstanding joke. I was not laughing. For me, if a writer has to resort to such dirty jokes to get a laugh then its just pandering to the lowest common denominator.

Someone obviously forgot this was a dorama, not a photoshoot.

I decided to look up the wiki and the writer was Nojima Shinji! OMFG! I had to stick this dorama for at least a few episodes. The heart of this dorama is Horo (Kamiki Ryunosuke) the second youngest child who is unable to cry. I think it would a futile to try to do a synopsis of the show because there are many characters and it doesn't really break the mold of country family doramas.

A smile that can melt the hardest of hearts, before Japan found out what a diva she was.

However, just when I thought that things could not get more cliched or hokey, the characters would say some really awesome line to set up an amazing scene and I'd just think Nojima Shinji is awesome. The man can just write great dialogue that really brings the characters to life. Like Bara no nai Hanaya which had such a soap opera-ish concept and yet he managed to make it work, he does the same with Aikurushii.

The best side story of the series.

Aikurushii is a very busy dorama. There are a lot of storylines running concurrently like Horo's search for the his fellow 'rainbow warriors' which sounds very stupid but it actually becomes a unifying thread for all the stories. Because there are so many characters, he has to put in storylines that really feel tacked on just to give certain characters something to do. In other words its not as focused which is not a bad thing since Nojima Shinji manages to make the storylines work but to me it does affect the overall quality of the dorama.

The acting and casting is awesome. While Takenaka Naoto does not do dramatic scenes as well, he doesn't stink it up. Ayase Haruka is perfectly cast as the responsible older sister and Saru Lock fits as the hotheaded older brother with his shouting and screaming. Oguri Shun and Sawajiri Erika play minor supporting roles but they have the weakest storylines.
Sawajiri's attempted rape scene. WTF is she wearing a t-shirt underneath??!!!!

 Goddamit, I had forgotten how pleasing to the eye Sawajiri is. It is the reason why she continues to be hounded by the media despite not doing anything in ages and why I put up with boring soap opera-ish crap like Ichi Litre and Taiyo no Uta. Oh yes, A very young Ohgo Suzuka is in Aikurushii as well so more reasons to watch it.

Sexy voice!

I would classify Aikurushii as a must watch show. Its below Kita no kuni kara, Oyaji and Hitotsu Yane no Shita in the pantheon of family doramas but its better than everything else. It has lot of great moments but I'm not as enamoured with Aikurushii as the above shows because it tries to do too much. I think Nojima Shinji should have placed the 'rainbow warriors' story as the centerpiece and cut down on the side stories. Still, I had a great time watching it and I think you will too. The abundance of  eye candy doesn't hurt as well.

Yes, Sawajiri is holding a bra in this screencap.


Jung said...

Sakurai Sachiko!

thanks for digging another one out of the jdorama graveyard Mike.

can't wait!

Akiramike said...

Yeah, Sakurai Schiko is a milf.

You can find megaupload links for it here: