Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Runaway ~Aisuru Kimi no Tame ni~ eps 1+2

I was going to skip this because a fugitive dorama with the tag 'aisuru kimi no tame ni' fills me with dread that it would be a dorama with excessive effort trying to manufacture warm and fuzzy fillings. Off the top of my head I can only recall two fugitive type doramas; Tobosha which was good except for Abe Hiroshi's character's constant posturing and Tobo Bengoshi which was so ineptly written. Jung said that Runaway was fun so what have I got to lose?

That girl does not look Japanese...

Runaway is a fugitive dorama and the tag line refers to Katsuragi (Ichihara Hayato) who escapes prison with 3 of his mates because his daughter is dying and needs lots of money to get an organ transplant. After watching the first episode, the final twist of the dorama is very obvious to me. Anyone with decent eyesight can see that his daughter is clearly Eurasian and with the mom being Fukuda Saki and Ichihara does not look like a gaijin, its obvious that he ending will be him finding out after running for 10 or so episodes that he is not the dad.

On a more serious note, Runaway is indeed fun. Considering the lack of qualities among action jdoramas, Runaway is impressive with lots of chase sequences including probably the first decent car chase scene I can remember watching. I'm impressed that they managed to do car chase despite the obvious lack of time and budget. However, there are a few warning signs that tell me this dorama could easily fall apart.

Cops going to open cargo door where fugitives might be hiding. A row of cops behind the two main cops with full SWAT gear and semi-autos while the two cops opening the cargo door are wearing suits and carrying pistols.....

First is that this group of fugitives get spotted way too often by the cops and somehow the next scene they manage to evade them. I would imagine running away from a bunch of policemen is very, very difficult unless all of them look like they eat 20 doughnuts everday. With like 5 or 6 close encounter scenes in two episodes, Runaway is really stretching the boundaries of believability here. Chalk it up to the fallings of the fugitive genre in that the writer has to find time for the characters to do. In Tobosha, it was Abe as the chasing cop posturing a lot. In Runaway, its lots of infighting, crying and being able to magical lose cops on their tail.

Secondly is the little girl who talks and thinks so much like an adult that she's scary. If not for the fact that her character was abused by her mother and her boyfriend, I would find her to be an opinionated and annoying brat. Contrasting the ultra smart adult in a child's body character, one of the fugitives was so fucking stupid as to post updates of their whereabouts on the web. I was bloody hoping that the ex-yakuza Kawashima (Tsukamoto Takashi) would kill that idiot. Speaking of Kawashima, he is my favourite cause he actually has a brain and is not trapped in a child's body though he has the melodrama story of having a hot blind girl as an ex-girlfriend who broke her promise to wait for him.

Its bloody scary how this girl can pull off a 'she's thinking something deep' expression.

Third is that Ichihara Hayato's overacting is just horrible. Its ok for comedy like Saru Lock but I can't believe he won best supporting actor for that stupid cryfest Rookies. Maybe straining yourself looking like you're constipating anytime you're crying is regarded as good acting by the Japanese. Maybe I'm just not judging acting by Japanese standards and Ichihara Hayato's two facial expressions are actually good. But then again, Japanese give out random awards for shit like best jeanist which means best looking talento in jeans. He's not as bad as no expression Kame but its obvious that he can't or does not use his eyes to act and overcompensates with his face.

So two things I enjoyed are the effort that the director put into doing the action stuff Fukuda Saki is always fun to watch. Can't believe she's playing a mom, sniff. The bad news is this is going to be a melodrama heavy story and in every episode I've got to put up with Ichihara Hayato who looks like he wants to cry all the time.


If you've watched fighting anime, you've certainly heard the words 'name janeiyo' which is usually translated as 'don't underestimate/look down on me'. Was talking with a friend yesterday and found name 舐め actually means to lick. Yes, for reason the kanji for lick also means to make fun of or to put down.

On an unrelated note, subs for eps 4+5 of Renai dekinai are up at jdramas@livejournal.


jt said...

and they've also given Ishihara Satomi an award for having nice legs! It really is weird. and there's actually a trophy.

i have to say that episode 1 is fun. episode 2 ruins it. I cant help laughing at saru lock's face and wonders how he even got a shot on Fukuda Saki. I wont be surprised if the real cops are protesting on this one on how poorly they are portrayed. the characters are interesting until they've added a little girl when episode 1 is over. bottomline is, i dont think i can treat this seriously even with the serious tone the dorama is trying to portray.

im planning on dropping this one and dont care about the characters running away. but i might give the next sub release a try to see how right i can be.

and thanks for the renai dekinai link. i need eye candies.

Robert A. Black said...

The little girl playing the daughter looks a lot like my oldest niece - who is indeed Eurasian, half Chinese and half Caucasian.

Jung said...

Haha is Ichihara Hayato.... a small-eyed Jinnai Takanori??! dun dun dun!

I've only seen up to 2 eps, and I see enough material for it to stay solid for at least 2-3 more eps.

But I agree, this show could fall apart after.

Jung said...

Haha just saw up to 4. I have to give it to the writers for constantly throwing in new elements to keep things spicy.

The way these guys weasel out of police dragnet make Dr. Richard Kimble look like rat stuck on a sticky trap. Completely unbelievable. But hey, look at the cast. Expecting realism from this show is like complaining about how lightsaber doesn't glow past 1.33 meter.

Though the subsequent episodes lack the raw intensity of the first couple of eps, I now have a faith that this show will remain viable.

Akiramike said...

Jung, you win a no-prize for the Jinnai Takanori jr comment. They probably had the same overacting coach.

12gurl said...

I personally love this drama, I think it has a great balance of action, suspense, thrill and even a little bit of romance, with interesting characters. I love the main story and the side stories of each main character.

I personally have seen Ichihara Hayato in about 5 different roles, I think he's a good actor and quite versatile too.
Sounds like you really like Fukuda Sasaki, I thought she was decent, though I thought her acting was a bit stiff in some parts.

lol and it sounds like you're keen to want Ichihara's daughter to not be his real daughter in the drama. Sorry to upset you man, but she is indeed Ichihara's daughter in the's just that they found a child actor who happens to look a bit Eurasian, but that meant nothing in the story.

Akiramike said...

It was more pointing out the casting of a little girl who looks cute but is just a jarring casting decision, like many doramas.