Saturday, September 28, 2013

Nanatsu no Kaigi

Can't stand the overacting and the unbelievable ratings of Hanzawa Naoki? Want your business doramas to be realistic and less black and white? Then Nanatsu no Kaigi is the one for you. Higashiyama Noriyuki is Harashima, the chief of sales division four at a electronics company and your average joe salaryman. One day, the chief of division one is ousted and Harashima promoted in his place. Its not a huge spoiler to say that Harashima's promotion is not because of his performance but to cover something up.

Yup, Nanatsu no Kaigi is a cover-up dorama from the perspective of the company doing the cover-up. Higashiyama Noriyuki does an excellent job playing Harashima. I've only seen him overacting in comedies like Kuitan and GM Odore Doctor but he really pulls through as the average salaryman worker forced into a difficult position by his company.

There's no stupid idealistic character in Nanatsu no Kaigi screaming every 5 minutes that cover-ups are absolutely wrong. This is a show about investigating what went wrong and looking at the potential losses of a product recall. Nanatsu no Kaigi is about being told by your bosses to do certain things that will have huge repercussions not just on your company but also other companies along the manufacturing chain.

The story is very straightforward. At the beginning we already know that everything gets exposed at the end. The interesting part is how Harashima slowly uncovers the truth and how he struggles with it and the various colleagues who help or hinder with him along the way. The various characters are interesting such as Lan Evo as the politician salaryman of the company. I'm happy to say non of the arguments get too long to become preachy.

Thanks to Arthur for recommending this one. Not sure about best dorama this year but definitely one of the best. Hats off to NHK for making this and Meoto Zenzai. Its unfortunate that these two great doramas are not English subbed cause these are the shows that make jdoramas good and not the summer nudes. Suffice to say Nanatsu no Kaigi is a great character and procedural cover up dorama and is a must watch.

Unfortunately, there's no Japanese sub for the last episode. The subs at jpsubbers are actually from a baseball game. The one thing I noticed while watching the last episode raw is that while I learned to recognise certain words by reading the subs, I never learned to recognise them by hearing. Maybe watching with Japanese subtitles is more detrimental to my Japanese because I never really remember the words and only the shape of the kanji. On the other hand looking up the dictionary can be a pain cause I'm not always sure whether I've got the right word.


Gankooyaji said...

Thanks for your review, which prompted me to check this out. BTW, your comment about watching with subtitles was spot on -- in my classes, I'm forever checking the kanji of what my teacher said (much to her amusement) instead of using my brain to figure out the word from context. Watching without subs definitely forces you to pay attention!

Anonymous said...

Rootabega sez:
Thanks for this rec! I will be watching this with dictionary in hand. I'm in the same boat with the listening difficulties. I made a decision a while back to concentrate on reading, and my conversation skills suck as a result. I'm pretty much hooked on the challenge of kanji and I tend to spend any extra energy on writing practice (which I never do enough of).
But, enough apologizing. I'm a lazy, passive human being - and that ain't changing anytime soon!;)

Anonymous said...

Rootabega again:
Nanatsu no Kaigi only has four eps, right? It looks like the final ep has been correctly added to Jsubbers now. Man, I'd be pissed if I got baseball commentary instead of my dorama subs.

Akiramike said...

Thanks for the update. I'll definitely rewatch it with subs. The only kanji writing I do is on my phone. lol. I wouldn't call someone who practices kanji writing lazy.

Anonymous said...

is your japanese learning super minimalistic? does reading japanese subs while watching jaapesne dramas make up a the majority of the time you spend on reading japanese? do you use anki? it's all up to you if you want to put more effort into japanese. it is your time.