Monday, December 19, 2011

Kare, Otto, Otoko Tomodachi eps 1+2

With a title like that, you can bet your savings that Kare, Otto, Otoko Tomodachi is a female ensemble dorama about relationships. Normally I would avoid such doramas after getting sick of Renai Dekinai but finding rare gems is what makes putting up with crappy shows worthwhile. In a nutshell, this dorama is about 3 sisters. Older sister is married to Santamaria Yusuke and they have a very weird and non-genuine relationship which reminds me of Sono Sion's Guilty of Romance. Eg, husband doesn't like tv so wife doesn't watch tv.

The second sister is independent and in a relationship with a reporter who goes off to the middle east. Second sister is probably the most 'real' and interesting character. She's a sexual being who knows what she wants and has more personality than all three women in Renai Dekinai combined. The running gag about her junior seeing her getting sexually harassed and hearing her phone call about sex is funny.

The writer is not afraid to put in a female character who likes sex for sex. Contrast with the fairy-tale approach of Renai Dekinai with Yoshitaka Yuriko character having all that sex but is void of emotion. Whatever happened to lust and the physical pleasure part of it? Needless to say, second sister is my favourite and I love her response to getting proposed.

The third sister played by Kaho is the weird one of the bunch. She's sort of detached in that she sees things and people from afar and has a grudge against her father. The youngest sister sees relationships as a necessary evil in order to fulfill her function of procreation. There's a character you don't see every dorama. There's also a mystery about her and a homeless dude. I don't know where her story is going except for her father issues but I want to see what the writer can do with her.

The one thing that really got me was the whole unreality of the first sister's marriage in contrast to the other two sisters who are interesting and seem like genuine people. The whole housewife who has no life apart from her husband and is dutiful despite the lack of care shtick has been played out so many times in jdoramas that it belongs in the same jdorama world as Renai Dekinai while the two sisters seem to come from our world. However, it does pay off at the end of ep 1.

In ensemble doramas, characters have to start as as their easily defined or cliched roles. This is byproduct of the fact that there is not enough time to delve into each character. The audience has to be able to watch a scene and get the character. The important thing is whether the characters grow outside their cliches and whether the dorama tries to bring them on an interesting journey.

Story wise, the first two episodes have good cliffhangers and I am excited about the fourth episode which is titled dad's secret. I watched two episodes without skipping any scenes so its certainly good but I am hesitant to say its must watch until I can be sure its not headed into mediocrity. It certainly shows promise and has the foundation to rise above the usual boring jdoramas.


Anonymous said...

this is the 3rd girl power dorama from nhk in 6 months.

kaho's character seems to be my favorite.

the acting especially the older sister is not good. chemistry among the actors seems kinda off also.. that's why i put this as my least favorite among the 3 obachan lead doramas.

it's still watchable and promising. especially that it was taken from a novel by an award winning writer... and kaho is cute. if i have to choose between the 7 eye candies of watahi dekinai and this drama, im sorry fans but maki yoko is hot.

Akiramike said...

What's your top obachan dorama this year?

No amount of eye candy can save the miserable writing of Renai dekinai.

Anonymous said...

im talking about kurumi no heya as my top so far. bitter sugar as my second because it's 30 minutes only. i liked that dude acting as gay because i seldom see gay guys and he's convincing. flexible actors like him are like the sixth man in basketball.

speaking of basketball, one hd is still not showing any signs of nba action.

Jesus Christ Supercop said...

I've been kind of interested in this because Kaho is cute. I guess that's as good a reason as any to watch a drama.