Tuesday, October 01, 2013
Rewatching Lady Joker eps 4-7 with English subs
I take back the one negative thing I had to say about Lady Joker now that incyphe has subbed the whole thing. Watching with English subs has opened my eyes to the story and I am no longer bored with the minimal action at the end. It became even more clear to me that this is a dorama not about Lady Joker but about society and the systems that regulate it and it does it in a non-preachy way.
First there is the company level, represented by the head of Hinode, Shiroyama. As I said previously, I'll take a nice guy character any day as long as he has to make difficult decisions and Shiroyama made them throughout the series. Shiroyama had to weigh his responsibilities to his company, colleagues, shareholders and family.
We can understand the decisions that he made and in the end, the common good trumps the right of the company. It is good to see a boss who would not let his subordinate fall on the sword by himself. It was Shiroyama's sacrifice that allowed the prosecutors to get some of the henchmen of the Okada Association but in the end the none of the bigwigs nor the powers behind Okada Association were prosecuted. Was the cost of his life and legacy worth it for something so futile?
The second system is of course the police. Hesitant to move against one of their own because fear of scandal. They end up applying pressure on the wrong person and the suicide of Lan Evo's superior made the police even more afraid of the truth. Goda, unable to do anything as a policeman can only hound and tail Lan Evo everyday.
Slowly Lan Evo cracked under the pressure. At first relieved that the police won't be coming after him, its even worst when he is overcome with guilt and realises that the police won't even catch him even if he confesses. Lan Evo hated the system so much that he wanted to humiliate the police and in the end he cannot even pay for his crimes the police always protects its face and its own.
The Lady Joker case made both Hinode Beer and the police look bad and only Hinode Beer was willing to come clean. The publicly traded company that has no obligation to law and order takes and extra step while the police cower and don't even offer protection to Shiroyama because he has violated the unwritten rules.
The third party is the mass media and prosecution. Charged with uncovering the truth, reporting against those in power will only result in physical harm and after the sacrifices throughout the series, the puppet masters do not flinch as order is restored to society.
Lady Joker is a bleak story with many players and watching with subs has made me realise their importance in their roles and how they have to soldier on, despite the unwritten rules of society. I'm glad Lady Joker was subbed cause now I think its a jdorama masterpiece. I'd put Lady Joker up there with the flawless classic jdoramas like Hagetaka and KDO. Well, except for the overacting dude police dude who furrows his eyebrows all the time like he's trying to turn into a super saiyan. Pimp this show to every jdorama fan you know cause it should have had a 40% rating.