Thursday, July 30, 2015

Enka ~ Gold Rush ~ Episode 1

A WOWOW dorama that doesn't feature a cop, reporter and politician as the main characters? Colour me interested. Moriyama Mirai plays an  temporary art teacher named Kumagai.

At the beginning of the episode, he has to go on patrol to catch any students loafing around the city at night along with another teacher, Oyamada.

Kumagai and Naoko are invited into a blackmail scheme by Oyamada.

The plan is to blackmail the headmaster they call hedgehog (harinezumi) by videotaping him with his mistress.

They want Harinezumi to make them regular teachers and allow the female teacher Naoko to continue singing. Kuma-san is also in debt.

They catch Harinezumi in the act but the blackmail is not affective.

The teacher who came up with the plan has a second thing to blackmail Harinezumi which I'm not sure what it is.

Kumagai and Naoko leave the scene of the blackmail but are unable to contact their Oyamada and they go back to discover they may be in over their heads.

Enka ~ Gold Rush ~ is really hard to understand not because of the Kansai-ben but because they speak really fast like real Kansai-ben. I had to watch it twice to understand the dialogue. Even then, there are parts I don't really get.

It looks like Enka is going to be a dark comedy which I like and is something we don't usually see from WOWOW. I can do without any conspiracy doramas from WOWOW. bframe says episode 2 is really good so I can't wait for it to be uploaded to nyaa.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Risk Kikitaisaku no Kamisama Ep 2

Risk no Kamisama Episode 2 didn't lose me with a story that had nothing to do with risk.

Risk no Kamisama didn't lose me with the poor attempt at a corporate blackmail story that's not even 1/10th as exciting as Lady Joker.

Risk no Kamisama didn't lose me with the cartoonish villain boss that gave me flashbacks to Hanzawa Naoki.

Risk no Kamisama didn't lose me with a story about people who still had jobs whinging about being made to do menial tasks. They should have been looking for new jobs while they still had a place to stay and salary coming in. What is it with jdoramas and blaming other people for inconveniences?

Risk no Kamisama really lost me when Tsutsumi Shinichi started blaming the President of Toyokawa foods for choosing meek employees and somehow linking it with the blackmail problem. The 'cool action' music made it even worse. WTF.

Is this the same writer who wrote Unmei no Hito and Untouchable? Why do mainstream jdoramas have to dumb things down to the point of stupidity? Its as if the Fuji TV mandated a villain be in the story and we have downtrodden survivors of a company downsizing.


I fucking hate moe. Its brought us K-on but ruined JRPGs forever. Fire Emblem if should have been called Fantasy Marriage Simulation. Not only is the story, at least for Byakuya Oukoku (White Night Kindgom) so freaking boring, there is no character development and every conversation is basically moe tropes that have nothing to do with the story.

At least Stella Glow limited access to conversations until you reached a certain stage because the tuning/dating had something to do with the story. Let's not mention you as the commander calling your troops into your abode so you can molest them with your 3DS touch pen and somehow all of them like it.

Did I mention its a war story but really its about how everyone likes the main character because he or she is so nice or how the kids who magically grow up into teenagers in an instant bit is shoehorned into the game for whatever reason. (At least it fucking made sense in Awakening with the time travel) I married Akua but the relationship with her in the main story is more like a comrade. I'm never buying another Fire Emblem game ever again. Fire Emblem If makes Stella Glow look like Shining Force. Fuck moe.

Oh yeah, I'm now playing through Anya Oukoku (Black Night Kingdom) and Nintendo is basically using all the assets from the first story. Seriously, the only effort they've done is come up with stupid boring conversation between all the characters. Sigh.


A remastered hentai strategy RPG for the PSP which is more like a visual novel with some easy strategy elements. Actually, it feels very much like listening to a radio play with minimal visuals. Most surprisingly, the story is pretty good and the characters very memorable. It made me really excited for the sequel coming out soon.

Until the science fiction twist that killed the story for me. It works for stuff like Grandia 2 cause the twist was awesome but in Utawarerumono it feels like a twist for the sake of a twist. I enjoyed the warring kingdoms and Hakuoro having to make difficult decisions.

I was so hyped and was going to preorder the collector's edition of Itsuwari no Kamen until the twist. I'll probably get Itsuwari no Kamen just for the characters from the first game.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Shi no Zouki Episode 1

I was really looking forward to this cause its got 3 of my favourite actors; Koizumi Kotaro, Toyohara Kosuke aka Mr Lan Evo and Konishi Manami. So a body of a young woman is found by Koizumi Kotaro in a forest where people go commit suicide and her liver has been removed.

Mr Lan Evo is the cop who orders an autopsy on the body. Two people were injured during a scuffle and taken to a hospital where it is discovered that they were liver donor and patient. Kinpachi sensei is the doctor suspected of doing the operation.

The last story thread is that Koizumi Kotaro wrote an article about a young girl who was confined by her stalker which resulted in the girl committing suicide and him getting blamed. Yep, Japan loves blaming everyone else but the criminal.

To be honest, the first episode is pretty boring. It looks great but every revelation just makes me go "......and?". Hopefully it gets interesting for episode 2.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Risk no Kamisama Episode 1

Toda Erika is a young executive at Sunrise, a huge company that does everything like Sony etc. She is in charge of the development of this super long lasting battery. Like a WOWOW dorama, something goes wrong with the battery and the God of Risk, Tsutsumi Shinichi gets involved.

First off, the first thing that made me go WTF was casting Toda Erika as a young executive. I thought they should have at least cast someone who looks 30 something. Luckily, her age is a big part of her character so that's cool. Thank the jdorama gods they did not cast Ueto Aya in this.

The talent in Risk no Kamisama is pretty good with Furuta Arata and Yamaguchi Sayaka. I like the concept of this show; a high flying executive who is way too young and naive not works in risk management and has to clean up other people's problems.

There's also the issue of company politics with the bad guy from Moteki in one corner and Kita Yoshio as always in the other. (Can they please cast someone else as the smiling, good guy puppet master besides Kita Yoshio. Not saying he's bad but there must be other actors out there. How about Toyohara Kosuke, Mr Lan Evo from Densha?)

Really promising first episode. Risk no Kamisama feels like a WOWOW show with a getsu 9 budget. Let's see how many interesting stories they can get out of Sunrise creating defective products. Thanks to shikashitsuji for subbing ep 1!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Death Note

So I went in to the new jdorama with no expectations. They start Light off as more of a regular guy instead of the proud asshole of a genius in the movies. The new dorama does not establish that he is a genius except the comment by his employer that he is very quick at calculations or something.

Changes I can take as long as they lead to something interesting. However the new L is, not interesting and seems more of an asshole compared to the original. The two things that really bugged me were that the Death Note dorama looks pretty 'cheap' and that scene where the police officer over explained Light's father's motivation. Seriously, why not let the audience put 2 and 2 together? Anytime I run into overt exposition, it tells me the writer is shit.

Anyway as I was watching the first two episodes of the series, the thought at the back of my mind was why am I watching this when I could be watching the movies. So I popped in the 2006 movie and oh boy, I never realised that Mitsushima Hikari was Light's sister.

I forgot how much I enjoyed watching this unapologetic bad guy as the main character.

I was too crazy about Toda Erika at that time to notice......

... but you can't really blame me, right?

The casting in the movies is so much superior,

and let's not forget Katase Nana (Ushijima-kun).

Why watch the dorama when you can rewatch the much better movies?

Friday, July 17, 2015

Renai Jidai Eps 1-2

Renai Jidai is a boring show about a divorced couple trying to set each other up with their next partner starring the anorexic nurse from Doctors and Mitsushima Hikari's brother. Yup, I never knew she had a brother until I looked up the wiki.

Renai Jidai is neither funny nor witty or entertaining. It just exists as a show where characters speak about ideals of love and marriage. Anyway, I stayed until the end of episode 2 because I wanted to see what the cause of the divorce was (ho-hum. Could have been good but I didn't care about the characters) and I was playing Fire Emblem If while watching.

Stay away. Don't even try it unless you have trouble sleeping.


That music is still so good after so many years.

Approaching 5.5 million. Hopefully they get a crazy influx at the last minute. I've already pledged $175. Would love to be an NPC in the game but not at that cost. I can't believe its coming in 2 or 3 years. I just have to fix my Dreamcasts or get another one and replay both games before then.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Neko Zamurai 2 Eps 7-11

The movie was basically a poor rehash of the first season and the second season felt the same but I kept watching Neko Zamurai cause it was 20 minutes per episode.

The series really picked up for me in episode 7 with the story about the fencing dojo and episode 8 was the funniest with the body swap.

The last three episodes switch to a higher gear with Tamanojo being targeted and the mother in law visiting.

I hope this is the last we see of Madarame because there are only so many ways to skin a cat.


Looks like Lunch no Akko-chan is being subbed. Its a fun feel good life lesson series with Renbutsu Misako and Mano Erina. Don't go in expecting too much and you'll have a fun time. The only negative thing I can say is that potafu doesn't look delicious at all. On the other hand, the dry curry looks so good.


The video game industry lost another one of its giants. It was weird watching the last Nintendo direct before E3 without Iwata-san.


Check out jadefrost's report on actor rankings. 

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Tenshi no Knife Eps 2-5

Ladies and gentlemen, we have our third must watch jdorama of the year after Kageri Yuki Natsu and Yami no Bansosha! Its sad that none have been subbed maybe Tenshi no Knife will be seeing as its got Nogizaka 46 girls although Yami no Bansosha deserves to be subbed the most. After episode 2 I could not stop watching because every episode ended with a goddamn exciting cliffhanger.

Let's get the elephant in the room out of the way; the acting is not very good. Koide Keisuke is no Koizumi Kotaro. Koide Keisuke does an ok job but there are some scenes that are just bad and I couldn't keep comparing his acting with Koizumi Kotaro's in Namonaki Doku because the roles are very similar. Koizumi Kotaro does a much better job showing  repressed frustration and fiery anger.

That being said, the story is effing awesome. Its a cross between Soredemo Ikite Yuku and Petero no Souretsu with your everyman trying to do the right thing caught in a unusual and complicated mystery suspense about juvenile crime and atonement. Do juveniles deserve to be treated less harshly than adults just because they can be reformed? Is protecting juveniles more important than keeping the victim's families from getting any closure? Tenshi no Knife asks explores a lot of questions but never gets too preachy.

Not is all bad in the acting front. Kurashina Kana does a great job, especially in the flashback scenes playing a 15 year old. Usually when an actor plays a much younger character they keep it short and don't try hard cause its not convincing but she really gave it her all in this. I guess she had to cause it such a long and pivotal flashback.

If the acting were really good, Tenshi no Knife could have been a Lady Joker. I hate to see idoru casting when supporting parts turn out to be very important. Surely WOWOW didn't have to do it to finance a dorama with a script this good? That said, I thoroughly enjoyed the story, maybe more than I should have and wouldn't mind rewatching it. Must watch. If you've got basic Japanese, give it a go. The most important word to know in Tenshi no Knife is kousei 更生 which means rehabilitation.

Monday, July 06, 2015

Tenshi no Knife Episode 1

One day, Cafe Manager's wife is killed at home with a knife but luckily baby was unharmed. Wife had multiple defensive wounds on her body trying to protect the baby.

Luckily the mother in law is hot. For some reason I got Mayumi Wakamura mixed up with the Neko Samurai lady and it took me until episode 3 to realise it.

Kurashina Kana turns up at the funeral as the deceased wife's old friend and somehow he hasn't heard of her. I'd say things are looking up for Cafe Manager.

Turns out the killers were 3 middle school kids so they can't be tried as adults. Cafe Manager's life becomes hell with press harassing him and random phone calls crazy people. The juvenile system is more about protecting the criminals and reforming them than about the victims, yada yada yada.

Cafe Manager then says he wants to kill the 3 kids which somehow makes people graffiti his coffee shop and throw eggs at him. Hello, the dude's wife was killed and the killers are kept hidden and will not be put in jail. Sometimes, things in Japanese doramas makes me wonder but there are always things in Japan that never make sense like Japanese not taking their coats off despite it being hot inside trains.

Four years later, Cafe Manager is enjoying life with hot mother in law and Kurashina Kana who works at the child car facility when they find out the identity of the killers. However, one of the killers ends up dead in a park near the cafe.

Cafe Manager goes to juvenile facility to learn more about dead killer. Finds out that the guy played basketball and teachers defend him cause he broke down when he was in charge of a new juvenile who's parents had tied when she was young.

Cafe Manager is one his way back when he is attacked by youths and the girlfriend of the dead killer turns up with a baseball bat to take revenge.


Interesting first episode but I'm not feeling the acting. I'm glad no one is really overacting except maybe the creepy cop but something feels a bit off. Despite the heavy subject matter, there's no scene so far where the tension and pain is so real I can feel it through the screen ala Soredemo Ikite Yuku. Hope it gets better.