Friday, July 13, 2012
Beautiful Rain ep 1
The Ashida Mana juggernaut keeps rolling on. When I first read about Beautiful Rain, I was praying to the jdorama gods that it would be as good as Shiroi Haru. Toyokawa Etsushi is a good actor and its got Nakatani Miki! Unfortunately, alzheimer is a handicap and fatal disease rolled into one so chances are its going to be another Ichi Litre.
If you're one of those people who enjoy show and tell doramas like Ichi Litre, you'll adore Beautiful Rain. I call them show and tell doramas cause they are about showing you certain scenes and telling you how to feel about them. For example cute father-daughter scene and you can hear the producers telling the audience to go awwwwww or in Japan ~~kawaiiiiiiii~~~. Or the little girl losing her pink bottle and the writer telling the audience 'isn't she so adorable and sad? Cry together with our perfect father and daughter!'
The opposite of show and tell is show and not tell. Soredemo Ikite yuku is a prime example. The audience is shown the emotional journey and tense situations that the characters go through and its not manufactured to make the audience feel one way or another. The characters don't tell/monologue their emotions to the audience.
The jdorama watching public will eat this up. For me, I couldn't skim this dorama any faster towards the end while thinking of Shiroi Haru. Completely different stories, redemption story vs look how cute/sad/brave they are. Could Japan produce a fatal disease dorama I would like? Off the top of my head, I can only think of Kanno Koi no Hanashi.
I guess I can't enjoy anything that is so obviously emotionally manipulative. Its like rewatching the Transformers cartoons and realising that they are designed to sell toys. Beautiful Rain is tear porn. It is designed to illicit tears from viewers. I can't really call this crap cause I dislike the show and tell genre itself. How do I judge whether this is a better manipulator of emotions compared to Ichi Litre, which I only watched for Sawajiri. At least Beautiful Rain not about a schoolgirl who gets alzheimer.