Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Majisuka Gakuen 2

If you've ever wanted to know the answer to the following questions:

- What does it mean to be maji (serious).
- For what purpose were you born.
- Why yankee girls can graduate high school without studying.
- Why do sakura petals blossom.
- How good must Maeda Atsuko's bj skills be with her continually being the face of AKB48 despite no acting and singing skills.

She looks exactly how I feel when I see her in doramas.

Then Majisuka Gakuen 2 is not the place to look for the answers.If you enjoyed season 1 for what it was, as I did then its more of the same but worse in some parts and slightly better. First season was Maeda Atsuko being the transfer student who doesn't want to fight taking down everyone climbing to the top. Pretty simple and straightforward.

In season 2, she faces the same problem as Neo after the first Matrix. She has become so powerful that there is nothing for her to do storyline wise. She is a force of nature. In Dragonball Z, they had to make things even more over the top but this is a low budget dorama. The writers decided to put her in the background in this quest of beating up yakuza and eating a sakura petal everytime she finishes a fight. Suffice to say, the reason she's doing it makes no sense at all.

The Maeda part is excusable. She's the face of AKB48 blah blah blah. The main problem with season 2 of Majisuka Gakuen is Itano Tomomi's character of Shibuya. Shibuya in season 1 was one of four Queens of Rapapa except she didn't really do anything besides get defeated with one punch by Maeda. Clearly she's a weak character or the director realised that no amount of cutting and camera tricks can ever make Itano Tomomi not look embarrassing.

Since, Itano Tomomi is AKB48's biggest solo act (her EM ads were everywhere in Japan when I was there), they decided to give her the main role as the antagonist where all is required from her is pouting her lips and declaring she wants revenge on Maeda. One of the important rules of wrestling is that the heel (bad guy) has to be threatening to the babyface (good guy).

Still can't believe she is only 14. She's like the Goto Maki of AKB48.

Is Shibuya remotely a threat to Maeda based on season 1? Nope. Do the writers 'power her up' in season 2 to make her look like she might give Maeda a run for her money? Nope. Ok, not all villains have to be strong but does she even hatch some insidious plans to put Maeda in a bind. Nope. Then in wrestling terms, she is a heel with no heat. I don't want to boo/hate her character because she's not a threat. She simply sucks and is boring.

I once thought Kojiharu was cute until I found out she can't act or sing.

Worst part is that there is no payoff. The main story of Majisuka 2 which has been building up in the background is the showdown between Maeda and Shibuya. In the end, we don't even get a bloody epic battle between the two of them. Not only have the completely stuffed up building Shibuya as a credible villain, they do not engage in fisticuffs.

Don't know who she is but they wasted so much time on her useless character.

The saving grace for Majisuka 2 is the relationship between Nezumi (Watanabe Mayu) and (Matsui) Matsui Jurina. Nezumi is the same mouse from season 1, always trying to fan the flames and incite people to fight each other. Matsui is sort of like her minion who does Nezumi's dirty work. Matsui like Nezumi even though she knows that Nezumi is a lying bitch and will use everyone to her end.

Kisu! Kisu! Kisu!

I'm not ashamed to say it. I finished Majisuka Gakuen 2 because of this relationship filled with yuri undertones. The scheming rat and her loyal to a fault muscle. It doesn't hurt that Matsui looks legal but is actually jailbat. Speaking of Matsui, she has a lot more charisma than that blank look which is stuck on Maeda's face all the time and she can emote decently unlike most of the people in AKB48. Mayuyu's not too bad either. It unfortunate that the duo are given main story screen time but are treated as a side story in the end.

In the beginning of every episode, there is disclaimer asking the viewer not to judge the acting too harshly. Overall, the acting in Majisuka is on par with shows like Buzzer Beater, Boss and Orthros no Inu so I find the disclaimer laughable. Does whoever put in that disclaimer have no idea about the acting quality in jdoramas? I expect overacting and seeing people on screen because they have fanboys/girls. Soredemo ikite yuku acting is the exception rather than the norm. Sadly, the writing is on par with the above mentioned shows which nearly makes Majisuka unwatchable and the disclaimer should have read,

"We had certain characters push onto us by AKB48 management and have had a hard time putting so many girls in so don't expect any decent writing."


KINGRPG said...

They girl group so cute,kawaii! Their costume very beautiful elegant. I love this style!

Antspace said...

Good call on Maeda ; ) I just can't get why she's the number 1! I watched the whole thing because I had 4 weeks off from work, so plenty of time to spend. This was the epitome of wasting time though : P
Geez the final episode was such a collosal let down... Incredible!!

Anonymous said...

and here i am still wondering why Itano Tomomi's Dear J is on top 10 of my itunes.

Anonymous said...

I don't know a thing about AKZRPA.DHRFHRNV whatever their letters are, and so I didn't know that they even had a drama to them.
Japan, can you really allow yourself to waste money this way?

That was off topic, I know.
I really enjoyed your post and laughed my head off at your comments :D
I think I'll stalk this blog more often...