Friday, July 05, 2013
Woman ep 1
Faaaaaaaarrrrk. Woman is so effing good. Only in Japan can a dorama have a crappy name like Woman with a uber photoshopped poster and still be awesome. Mitsushima Hikari absolutely kills it in the acting department and just absolutely becomes her character Aoyagi Koharu. Sakamoto Yuji was surprisingly quick in getting rid of Oguri Shun, lol. Don't worry ladies, he'll be in the flashbacks to come.
I was wondering how Sakamoto was going to pace this dorama and its by making Woman more than just a single mother hardship story. Looks like the tension is going to come from Koharu's strained relationship with her mother and her current family. Thank the jdorama gods that Koharu is a character rather than a bland single mother archetype. For a more soap opera story, there's the dude working at the welfare department who is married to Tanimura Mitsuki and Takahashi Issei (the dude from Gonzo who looks like he wants to cry all the time) as her colleague.
I'm getting strong affair vibes from that set up but I trust in Sakamoto Yuji. The rest of the cast is awesome. The mom from Mother is Koharu's mom and the master from Shinya Shukudo is her husband! Not to mention Usuda Asami (Suzuki sensei) as Koharu's colleague and we've got some of my favourite actors.
So many highlights in one episode. The heart stopping pram scene. The old welfare guy asking her if played pachinko. Can't blame him though, he's probably seen too many welfare cheats. Koharu asking money from the young welfare guy. The money scene with Koharu and her mom. OMFG, the tension and the gamut of emotions in that scene and the beautiful directing. Mitsushima Hikari just runs through Koharu's pride, anger and desperation all at the same time.
There's this shot when Koharu and her mom are talking where the camera is behind Koharu's mother and it loses focus on Koharu's face so we can concentrate on the side of the mom's face from behind. We can't see Koharu's mom's face but every twitch of her muscles convey more emotion than Fukada Kyoko ever can.
Woman is so Soredemo Ikite Yuku-like in the way it just holds my undivided attention. Realistic dialogue and characters and just mesmerising acting that made me feel like a fly on the wall. Why can't more doramas be like this? If you're not watching this, you shouldn't be watching jdoramas.