Tag: JDrama

Kanna-San! (Ms. Kanna!) – Japanese Drama Review


Kanna-San! (Ms. Kanna!) – Japanese Drama Review

I spent the afternoon and evening binge-watching this drama yesterday.  It is a 2017 Japanese drama starring Jun Kaname, who is the reason why I watched this fairly unknown dorama, and Naomi Watanabe, who has been dubbed as Japan’s Beyonce.  With Naomi’s fairly large frame, it was hard to imagine her being a Beyonce but as soon as she moves and do her thing, you can see her aura and personality more than makes up for her being fat. (I know that is far from being politically correct but I have to call and say it for what it is – sorry).

Anyway, Naomi Watanebe played Kanna Suzuki who was married to Jun’s character, Rei Suzuki.  They have a really adorable son, Reon,  played by a very able child actor, Eito Kawahara.

They lived a happy, fun life until Reon’s 4th birthday,

Rei failed to celebrate the party because he came home late and without the promised Mr Penguin slushy machine present.

Rei did not seem that bothered having missed the birthday and went immediately into his mancave to do more work.  Kanna understood as she is used to her workaholic husband.  She ended up having a solo karaoke in the living room.  With all the racket she was making, her husband put on his headphones.

As he checked his text messages, he did not notice that his wife was behind him and can read all the exchanged text with his mistress.  Kanna found out that the husband was not late for the party because of work but he was with his mistress.  She was infuriated to know that he kissed her after he had been kissing his mistress.

Rei said that he is lovesick.  He can’t control it.  She kicked her husband out of the bedroom and told him to be gone before she wakes up.  And he was.

After a a few days, the husband came to visit with his mother.  The mother-in-law, though not the typical Oriental monstrous one in dramas, was still annoying.  Anyway, Kanna was ready to forgive her husband but he said he was actually serious about his mistress.  He wanted to be with her.

Kanna took it all in.  She is not one to be depressed for long. She gave her husband a divorce.

Restarted her life as a single parent.  She has a vivacity that is contagious.

I know this kind of vivacity.  Because when I was in college, I had a schoolmate called Gemma.  She was tall for a Filipina 🙂 and had a sexy body.  But her face is not so good and bordering on the hideous.  She had inflamed pimples all the time and acne scars which turned really dark, her nose is flat and wide.  But she had a piercing and bright eyes which mirrored her personality.  She was always laughing, that kind that is contagious, and she was a good raconteur.  She tells the best and funny jokes and stories.  We used to congregate around her.  She was the queen bee.  Her popularity reached mega-stratosphere in our school when her boyfriend, who was so gorgeous came to pick her up in his car.  At that time we had never seen  a young person owning his own car.  🙂 🙂 🙂

I digress, anyway over time Kanna made a life of her own with her son, she was circumspect with her husband and his girlfriend, so much so that her husband felt a glimmer of something for her again and the girlfriend noticed this too.   They ended up breaking up.  Rei decided to go back to Kanna but at this point, she had started a relationship with a world-renown fashion designer, Nick Namba.

It would have been happily ever after for Kanna with Nick; he was perfect, he has sown all his wild oats, so to speak, and really ready and aching to settle down and be a family but little Reon won’t take to him.  Kanna and Nick separated.

Kanna then went to  Rei, who bought her a mansion as an atonement for his abandonment.  She said she would be with him again in their new mansion (apartment) but Rei just met up with a fashion model childhood friend.  He said to Kanna that he was not ready yet.  So they are both back to square one.

To buy the mansion, Rei barrowed money from his company, he had to really work hard to finish a website that would clear his debts.  He was so happy at last and went to Kanna and asked her to marry again.  She said No.  She doesn’t want marriage.  They could live together.

Unfortunately, the company, the website he was working on, went bankrupt.  Rei was in debt for 50M yen,  He lost his company and can’t pay the 10M Y loan.

At this point Kanna is at her lowest ebb too having just lost  her job.  But Kanna is optimistic and resourceful.  She work as a construction worker, hefting materials in the site.

Kanna found out Rei’s predicament.  She said that they had to sell the mansion to clear more of the debts.

And they remarried and downsized into a little apartment, both working and seemed happy to be together.

It is a very engaging story but there is not much chemistry really between the actors, probably that is why it was easy to overlook that emotive subject of infidelity!  Kanna and Nick have more chemistry.  That back hug was sexy.

Good Morning Call Season 2 Review

A Netflix Original poster

Good Morning Call Season 2 Review

Yes, finally Good Morning Call Season 2 (Our Campus Days),  is being shown by Netflix.

It has 10 episodes altogether with some new characters.  This series two continues on from their middle school days to university life; campus days.

The new series is apparently a Netflix original and they only started showing it yesterday.  So whilst agogly waiting for this Japanese drama’s second series, I rewatched the original one and enjoyed it once again.  Lots of giggles!

Then yesterday, within minutes of release in Netflix, I was there in front of my huge telly, goggle eyed.  What a sad, happy life I lead!!!  🙂

And I binge-watched all 10 episodes in one day. 🙂

(I think Netflix have said that their customers are binge-watching their ‘box-set’ series!)

Good Morning Call – Series two is still as kawaii but more mature.  I had a few tears a few times.  Poor Nao!

 

New Cast:

    • Shiraishi Shunya as Uehara Hisashi.
    • Fukuhara Haruka as Yoshikawa Nao.
    • Sakurada Dori as Shinozaki Daichi.
    • Sugino Yosuke as Natsume Shu.
    • Sagara Itsuki as Nanase Rin.
    • Takahashi Maryjun as Kumanomido Saeko.
    • Arai Moe as Konno Marina
    • Nagashima Shugo – Micchan
    • Nagasawa Koya – Abe Jun

Good Morning call, Our Campus Days follows on from when Uehara and Nao were forced to share an apartment and lived together.

They were victims of a scammer, who rented the same apartment to each of them. For months they lived together secretly.

Before long Uehara and Nao developed feelings for each other but the school found out about their housing situation.

It was a school taboo for two unrelated kids to live together by themselves even it was platonic.

In the last episode of the first series, Uehara and Nao promised to be still together even if  they have to live separately.

On moving day, they found that their estate agent/landlord put them into two flats, which were next to each other.

Series two continues on from this.

Uehara is a popular boy with his stunning good looks,  200 IQ and being athletic to boot. He is one of the top three most gorgeous (popular) boys in the university.

Girls were swooning everytime he walks by. But he is beyond cool. He was cold. He does not like all the fuss.   This made him even more desirable. He is stalked by girls  and it has become a bit of a problem for him.

Nao on the otherhand is ordinary (the actress is actually very pretty) and rather clumsy but has got a pure heart and perseverance.  Her innocence made her a boy magnet.  Gorgeous guys were falling for her big time.  Daichi (one of the three popular boys) loved and pined for her for eight long years.

Uehara’s predicament with boisterous girls following him everywhere continued on until he met Natsume, who he really gets on with.  Natsume showed him a secret room, where he can relax  and have a moment of peace 🙂  He was so grateful to Natsume, who is very gregarious and very popular with everyone, especially with the girls.

Uehara admired Natsume’s openness and helpfulness.  He perceived Natsume as a male equivalent of Nao.  Natsume, like Nao, Uehara thinks, would go a long mile to help others, even if it means inconveniencing himself.  He was rather envious of Natsume’s friendliness, so much so that he developed a bit of inferiority complex when comparing himself to Natsume.

Natsume is flirty and in touch with his feminine side. He loves handicrafts and embroidery. No Uehara and Natsume do not have a gay thing. LOL 🙂

In fact Natsume kissed Nao, which Uehara witnessed. Nao was so distressed that she was spinning like a top, but Uehara forgave Natsume almost in a heartbeat. What kind of a boyfriend is he?

In the end Natsume truly fell for Nao.  Told you, she is a boy magnet 🙂

Nao and Uehara’s relationship was undergoing a very uncertain phase.  To comfort the aggrieved Nao, Natusume kissed her which Uehara found out. Uehara was waiting for Nao to confess about the kiss but Nao was too embarrassed to say anything at first until the moment for confession has passed its time limit.

But before judging Nao, Uehara was not a hard done by boyfriend.  He went on a date with his boss, called Saeko, who is aptly named as she was slightly psychotic.  LOL.  Uehara and Saeko even shared a kiss which Nao witnessed.  Saeko also confessed to Uehara.  Though Uehara did tell her that he doesn’t return her feelings, he continued to be closed to her, much to the discomfiture of Nao.

There are plenty of things that are going wrong as well as misunderstanding between Nao and Uehara so their relationship became rather awkward.

Uehara said that he wanted space and asked Nao not to go into his flat or contact him for now.

Nao understood and did what Uehara wanted. She is not confident about the relationship anyway. She was thinking that her relationship with Uehara was purely accidental, that if they were not ‘forced’ to live together Uehara would not have given her even a second look. Thinking this she finally accepted that they were not really right together and told Uehara that they should break up.

Though they had broken up, Nao said that she would only ever love Uehara and she put Natsume properly in his place.  She cannot have a deeper relationship with Natsume.  She was very upset too because Natsume had been a crutch to her in facing all her troubles.

You might get the impression that this drama series is full of angsts and heartbreaks but actually there are plenty of cute and heart warming moments; you can’t help but fall in love with Nao and Uehara all over again (if you had seen the first series).  You would also like Natsume for being a good friend and a ready shoulder to cry on for Nao.

Spoiler Do not Read

Uehara was also missing Nao but he kept thinking that Natsume was better suited to be with Nao.

Natsume is a good guy and really cares for Nao and her happiness. So he misled Uehara with misinformation that Nao was going on a little vacation with him.  He let Uehara know where Nao would be at.

Saeko also came to the rescue by telling Uehara to stop running away.  But run away was what Uehara did.  Running to Nao.  I have to admit he never look more gorgeous than when he was running in his denim jeans and white t-shirt and open polo shirt.  There is something so attractive about a fit young man running.  (Ooops, I digress) 🙂

Uehara confessed his feelings to Nao that even if she loves someone else, he would still love her.  Awww.

The end was that they are finally together with a more mature relationship.  They spend nights together in each other’s flats.   Ahhhh Uehara has turned lovely dovey 🙂 🙂 🙂  Welll lovey dovey the Uehara way.


I rewatched this whole series a second time and hated Uehara even more.  He was a clueless lump.

How can a guy who was supposed to be stalked by girls in his every ‘walking  moment’ 🙂 lose confidence in himself.  Even Saeko, his lab boss has fallen for him.  I don’t get his character motivation.

I think he has a boy crush with Natsume.  He treated him better than he dealt with Nao.

During Uehara’s birthday, which he knew Nao really worked her guts out to make it as happy and festive for him as possible; decorating every nook and cranny of his apartment, cooking all the foods he likes and more (he saw her itinerary for his birthday) and yet he did not give any second thought for working late and coming to Natsume’s rescue and bringing him to the apartment.   At least Natsume has the grace to leave and yet Uehara was easily persuaded to run after him.  He found it so easy to disappoint the poor girl.

After knowing that Nao is not happy of his closeness with Saeko (they are on a first name basis, which is apparently not the Japanese way between people who are not related), Uehara did not take Nao’s concerns into consideration; he even went on a date with Saeko.  He lamely said that it was not a date but like going for a meal with Natsume (a friend).

Ha!  He pined for Yuri for years, how can he not know about feelings?!!!

He also knew that Saeko has the hots for him and he did not really tell her to stop her flirting, in fact in a way he encouraged it.  He even allowed her to kiss him and protected her when she needed it.

I am so annoyed I think I shall rewatch it again in a couple of days!  LOL

 

Ashi Girl (Japanese Drama Review)

Ashi Girl

Ashi Girl (Japanese Drama Review)

After Overprotected Kohoko, Ashi Girl is my new Japanese drama to follow.

I have just watch the first 2 episodes with English subtitles and the 3 one in a ‘raw’ form.  Well it was that good that I had to watch it even if I only barely understand it.  🙂

Hayakawa Yui is  a 16 year old girl, who lacks motivation in her studies.  She is a bit of a tomboy, the one thing that she excels in was PE (Physical Education) more specifically, running.  She can run so fast that  everyone comments that the only fast thing about Yui are her feet.

Yui lives with her house-husband father, a doctor mother and a brainiac younger brother.

One day, Yui went into her brother’s ‘boy cave’ to call him for dinner but found him looking like he was about to commit seppuku, which is better known, I think, as harakiri (belly cutting/suicide).

The brother told her immediately that that was not the case but he has invented a way of going back into the past.  He wanted to send all the bullies from his school to the warring era of the Senguko period.

Her brother showed her the device, which was the knife he was holding, that would send anyone to the past.  Before the brother could warn her to be careful, Yui unsheathed the knife, which catapulted her into the Senguko period.

She was so hungry that she was about to eat fungi growing in the forest.  But warned by a rather handsome young man that the mushrooms were poisonous.  Yui fell in love.

The young man happens to be the crown prince.  He was Hagi Tadakiyo.

Despite her school uniform, the men thought she was a boy and she got recruited to be one of them as a foot soldier.  They thought she was Yuinisuke, the son of one of the villagers.

When she got to the village, Yuinisuke’s mom pretended that she was her long lost son.  The mother knew immediately that she was a girl and she sort of protected her.

From then on, she met a lot of adventure but her raison d’etre was to be closed to the crown prince.

She was back into the present by the second episode.  She found that she was missing the crown prince.  She dreams about him all the time.

So in the third episode, she opted to go back to the past and save the crown prince, who was said to have only 6 months to live according to history books.

Ashi Girl is apparently a manga story.  I have to admit that it is really quite endearing to watch.  Yui and the crown prince are so cute.

So looking forward to more adventures of these two.

I think this drama is composed of 12 episodes.

 

 

Overprotected Kahoko (Japanese Drama Review)

Overprotected Kahoko (Japanese Drama Review)

I am watching this Japanese drama and I cannot recommend it highly enough.  If you want to watch just one drama for this week, make it this Jdrama.

It has everything: laughther, pathos, angst, first love, being rejected, nuclear family, children who had flown the nest coming back to roost, ungrateful family members, desperation, filial love, everything.

Overprotected Kahoko is a story about a girl who in normal circumstances should be confident and knew how to navigate the world or at least her surrounding environment with independence and boldness typical of young adult.

Kahoko is 21 years old and in her last year of university and at this point should have a job to go to after graduation.  But Kahoko is a different sort of girl.  She has the pureness and innocence of a 12 years old.

She was overprotected by her parents, especially by her mother.  The mother does everything for her.  She was Kahoko’s human alarm clock, she wakes Kahoko every morning, she cooks and makes the girl’s bento for school, she was the driver, she takes Kahoko everywhere.  She also chooses all of Kahoko’s clothes and what to wear each day.  Kahoko relives her life everyday by watching from her library of videos of her ‘growing up’ everyday.

One day Kahoko met a young man, a young painter who is rather ‘upset’ with the world, how unfair the world is.  He lectured Kahoko about her ‘princess’ complex and its effect to Japanese progress.

Their relationship is so cute.

There are so much going ons in this drama as it is a nuclear family with maternal and paternal family members are having issues of their own.  But kudos to the actress playing Kahoko, she looks so pure and innocent, she is so watchable.

This drama is really one to watch.

It was like seeing the world in the eyes of a child.

Pure

Dokushin Kizoku (A Swinging Single) Japanese Drama Review

Noble Bachelor

Dokushin Kizoku (A Swinging Single) Japanese Drama Review

As a Sunday treat, I am watching a Japanese romantic drama called Dokusjin Kizoku, I am not really sure what is the exact translation in English but this drama is also called A Swinging Single as well as Noble Bachelor.

This drama is really quirky.  I love it.  The noble bachelor is Mamoru Hoshino (Tsuyoshi Kusanagi), the president of a film company.  He is a confirmed bachelor as he can’t abide living with a woman.  He said that if he does get married, they have to live in connecting apartment of even better separate buildings. 🙂  He is eccentric with a fetish for polishing his many pairs of leather shoes.

He was currently living with his ‘homeless’ brother, Hoshino Susumo (Hideaki Ito) who is undergoing a divorce proceeding.  He is a bit of a womaniser, thus, his wife is taking him to the cleaners.  She got the house, the car, the savings and asking for more compensation.  Susumo works in the same company as his brother and is in charge of the business side, in which he excels.

The woman that these brothers are attracted to is Yuki Haruno (Keiko Kitagawa), who is a young scriptwriter.  She too is wary of marriage.  She is a modern woman who does not want to be tied to doing housework.  She wanted to pursue her ambition.

Having said that, she still believe in romance.  She was surprised to hear Mamoru saying that being in love is like having a temperature of 40 degrees centigrade, which is being out of your mind, mentally incompetent and must not make decisions like buying a house and getting married. LOL

Susumo is a bit jealous of his brother.  He aspires to be the president of the company but deep down he thinks his brother is really better suit.

Audrey Hepburn singing the background music, Moon River, adds poignancy to the film.  Love it.

The only thing about this film that makes me uncomfortable is that both brothers, who are both adorable, are attracted to the same woman.

During Yuki’s birthday both brothers tried their best for her. The look on Momoru’s face seeing Yuki being snogged by Susumo is just heartbreaking. 🙁  Finally Momoru’s fallen in love and it was so sad.

Yuki ended up dating Susumo but she remained rather attached with Momoru.

Momoru felt that to forget his feelings for Yuki, he needed to do something drastic.  That is he allowed himself to be persuaded by his aunt to go on a blind date and get married.

The last 10 minutes of the whole series shows that Momoru and Yuki are meant to be.  At last they finally shared a tight embrace and a kiss among drying fish! 🙂

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