Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Rich Man Poor Woman Ep 1

Can you spell foreshadowing?

Rich man poor woman is an updated version of Pretty Woman which was of course an updated version of Cinderella. Prince was changed to rich businessman and now updated to the Japanese version of Mark Zuckerberg. The poor, abused stepsister was changed to a prostitute and is now a dojikko University graduate struggling to find work. End of the day, the concept is the same; regular meets Knight in Shining Armour to rescue her from regular life and she becomes a princess.

What makes Rich Man Poor Woman different? Its got Oguri Shun as Hyuga Toru, the Japanese Mark Zuckerberg who's company looks like a copy of Google headquarters and he's a big plan about online database for Japanese citizens. The interesting about his character is that he has a disability whereby he is unable to remember names and faces. Fingers crossed in doesn't advance into a debilitating fatal disease. If this were a kdrama, its almost a guarantee and Poor Woman would end up being his sister.

Wait, we're suppose to believe Poor Woman is really poor and would cry over 3000 yen of pocket money while she has a Galaxy S III? This is where product placement is opposite of what the story needs.
Ishihara Satomi is the poor everywoman, Sawaki Chihiro. She has a photographic memory and is graduating from a top Uni but lacks confidence. Blah blah blah. You know the drill. There's of course a scene where rich man brings poor woman to buy very expensive clothes which is probably every woman's wish fulfillment.

The interesting thing for me, is the portrayal of the Japanese job hunting process. There seems to be a uniform for it including flat, rounded shoes for women. When Poor Woman goes to buy the shoes, the saleslady automatically knows it for job hunting. Who was the person who decided that everyone has to dress a certain way for interviews? Does that mean that anyone who looks different is basically out?

The main hook for me in Rich Man Poor Woman is that Poor Woman has a name that Rich Man remembers and there is a pretty good cliffhanger at the end of the episode. The writer has definitely put enough substance in the first episode to make it more than another Cinderella story. I wonder if the recent laws against pseudo gambling in online games will appear in this dorama. Pretty entertaining first episode. The main things I'm looking forward to are the business side of things and the mystery of who Poor Woman is. Arata is a good actor and I want some backstabbing! Very watchable.


Sonnaaaaa~ said...

Yes! I'm glad that you watched this. I was pulled in by the cliffhanger at the end of the first ep too. I just hope it stays good.

Something's probably up with that brother/sister combo too...

Anonymous said...

Same. Even though the two main characters annoyed me in some scenes, at least Arata is a calming influence and made me went through the first episode.

That Ishihara Satomi character could turn out to be devious after all, *she* was the one that decides to use that name. I wonder if we could a see a Cinderalla that has a plan, instead of just waiting for her prince to save her. I guess I will follow this dorama and see if it's managed to hold my interests.

Jesus Christ Supercop said...

Some trip reports:

Naniwa Shounen Tanteidan (ep1, ep2): reasonably fun, not as good as the great Deka Wanko.

Iki mo Dekinai Natsu (ep1): pretty standard stuff that's unlikely to distinguish itself in any way, but I'm curious to see how they'll develop the romance. This is the first time I've seen Emi Takei, and she seems alright.

Tokkan (ep1, ep2): it's fun (the first episode opens with a really funny joke, or at least I thought so), and has a good cast. I like how mousy and akward Inoue's character is. The only downside is that every episode is probably going to end with a boring moral lesson. Hopefully there will be some variety.

Anonymous said...

I'd hate for this to go the sister route at the end which I think is highly unlikely to happen. Most probably they knew each other since they were children but due to circumstances got separated. I also pulled in my the cliff hanger at the end. I hope that the writers will bring a good, interesting and refreshing story line because I see it having that much potential. I'm looking forward to the future episodes.

Sonnaaaaa~ said...


I like Iki mo dekinai natsu. It's pretty intense, and I'm curious about how things will develop too and what the other two males in the story have to do with it. The crying scenes are a bit blah but few people can pull those off.

Tokkan is OK too, especially with mousy Inoue.

Only watching Naniwa Shounen for Koike eye-candy and Tabe's super cute Kansai-ben.

jt said...

spot on the generic typical drama comment. it's predictable until the twist in the end. makes me realize that there is something to it. especially that the reveal was way too early, telling the viewers that this is not your typical rom com. maybe/probably... but is it? that makes me curious. hopefully it wont be a bummer because i almost dropped this feeling that there is a korean drama-esque story.

will watch towards the end because of Ishihara Satomi.

lzyData said...

This drama was coasting along like a typical J drama until that cliffhanger when it suddenly grew a brain. I was really anticipating what they would do with this, but in episode 2, nothing. I guess the suspense is supposed to last for a few episodes or something! Heh.

Anonymous said...

I got here because I am desperately looking for recaps for episode 3 of this drama. I am new to Jdrama only started watching since June. But this drama is getting buzz in Kdramaland so I was wondering if anyone knows of blogs that recaps Jdramas the day after they are aired by Japanese speakers not someone who is waiting for subs like me? lol

Eric Paroissien said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Eric Paroissien said...

Oops sorry I'm trying some html here for you to click it:
Hi guys,
I just finished the subtitles of
"Rich Man, Poor Woman ep03"
with Shun Oguri:
you can follow the progress of my subtitles
on Twitter:
Eric Paroissien

Aquaria said...

:::Rich man poor woman is an updated version of Pretty Woman which was of course an updated version of Cinderella. ::::

This is ridiculous. It's nothing like Pretty Woman. The most glaring reason it isn't is that the heroine in this isn't a common whore.

Pretty Woman is only installment 29832749328792374 of an ongoing story.

Quit lumping trash like Retarded Whore with a much better drama about a decent young woman.

Anonymous said...

These subs are pretty shit also use a better font and style it doesn't look nice.

Why does live action have such shitty sub groups while anime has groups that actually know how to encode, quality check, translate, time etc?

Eric Paroissien said...

Just finished subbing:
Rich Man, Poor Woman episode 05
Take the subtitles at:
follow my subbing on Twitter

micky said...

found full recap of ep 6 here in case anyone wants to read http://www.vingle.net/posts/45024-Rich-Man-Poor-Woman-Japanese-Drama-Recap-Summary-Ep-6

Eric Paroissien said...

Just finished subbing:

Rich Man, Poor Woman episode 06


Take the subtitles at:


follow my subbing on Twitter