Dorama Reviews

J-Dorama : [A-C] [D-F] [G-I] [J-L] [M-O] [P-R] [S-T] [U-Z]

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Gakko no Sensei

Rate: 8.5
Broadcasted in Japan: TBS Oct-Dec 2001
Duration: 11 episodes
Themesong: "Minna, Genki Kai?" by Kinki Kids

Synopsis: The story greatly resembles 3 Nen B Gumi Kimpachi-sensei with some stereotypical characters tacked on. There's the hardheaded father figure, who is a ramen shop chef, his tough school teacher daughter (Yuko Takeuchi), who hates Sakuragi, and an estranged older sister, who dad has disowned. Dad is renting Sakuragi the estranged sister's old room. Takeuchi and Sentaro teach with a guy who has a huge Oedipus complex. We have seen it all before, but done better elsewhere. However, the real problem is not the scenario, but the school. It would be hard to find a less likeable class.

Acting performances:

Tsuyoshi Dohmoto as Sentaro Sakuragi
Love Sentaro's character!!!^^ I thought, Dohmoto is really good at making up that Kansai dialect....but someone told me, he and Koichi Dohmoto actually born in Osaka? So, Kansai dialect is the way he talk originally? Hehe...well, anyway, great acting by Tsuyoshi Dohmoto! Always love him as an actor!

Yuko Takeuchi as Motoko
Takeuchi played such a tomboy girl this time!! Very cute and funny! Always love her acting!!^_^

First sight: My friend, a Tsuyoshi Dohmoto's fan, keeps pestering me to watch this one coz its a very good one! i watch!

Comments: Well...she's right! It is very good!! I love how Sakuragi interacts with the little kids! And lots of touching scenes(my eyes went crystally) as well as comical scenes! Really love it!
Great depth of the story, either! My favorite ep is this little love story between a boy and a girl from Sakuragi's class(they're in 5th grade). These 2 always mock each other and fight each other a lot, but the truth is, its because they like each other. Sooooo cute and sweeet..later, when they confess their own feelings! Hontou ni kawaaaiii...^^
Sakuragi and Motoko's relationship is also very funny! Bicker a lot...but, deep down they love each other =P
Great themesong by Kinki Kids and great BGMs by Tsuyoshi Dohmoto himself^^

Watched: once, borrowed the VCD from a friend

Likes: The story, the funny scenes, Sakuragi and Motoko

Dislikes: ...mmm, the ending...kinda left me unsatisfied -_-

Golden Bowl


Rate: 8.5
Broadcasted in Japan: NTV April-June 2002
Duration: 11 episodes
Scriptwriter: Shinji Nojima
Themesong: You Are My Destiny by Paul Anka

Synopsis: Japanese-Taiwanese heartthrob Takeshi Kaneshiro stars as Akutagawa, a securities analyst who relieves the stress of sitting at a computer screen all day with nightly sessions at the local bowling alley. The young salaryman is so good, in fact, that the alley's elderly owner tells him he's pro material and bequeaths him his own "golden ball," since he won't need it anymore. It turns out a local developer is trying to convince the owner to sell the bowling alley, whose business has never been the same since the end of Japan's huge "bowling boom" of the late '60s and early '70s. The developer wants to tear it down and build a love hotel.
Of course, the longtime employees of the alley, as well as the manager of the planetarium that's located on the roof and a former pro who frequents the establishment, oppose the sale and try to convince the owner not to cave in. The developer comes up with an idea: He and the owner will bowl for the building. There is also a romantic subplot involving an upper-middle-class housewife (Hitomi Kuroki) who uses the same locker that Akutagawa does, but in the daytime.

Acting performances:

Takeshi Kaneshiro as Shu Akutagawa
Cho kakkooooi!!!! And really love it to see Kaneshiro in a cheerful & ridiculous role!!^_^ He's just a great actor!!

Hitomi Kuroki as Hitomi Sakura
Sugoooiii!!!! She looks 10 years younger than her real age!O_o And, what makes me rooting her role to be together with Akutagawa(despite the fact that I'm usually not fond of older woman with younger man love story) is b'coz Kuroki-san can perfectly act her role cute, funny, fun and just like a girl!! She talks like a girl and even dress like a girl, or at least...less like an 'oba-san' ^_^ Really love her as an actress, since I watched her in TEAM as Kusanagi's boss. Quite ironic, b'coz in Majo no Jouken, she suceed made me hating her to the chore playing the role as Takki's mother =P

First sight: I used to watch Kaneshiro's HK movies, and he usually act those ridiculous roles. Quite dissapointed, coz when he enter the J-entertainment world, he plays in serious doramas and acted in serious roles. I miss his hillarious acting! So, when I know that Golden Bowl is a comedy...of course I would really love to watch this one!! Kaneshiro in a comical role! Little did I know, that the story will get me impressed too!^_^

Comments: A 32 years old bachelor who works in a stock exchange and a 38 years old housewife. What kind of love story can we expect from these two?!? Interesting, isn't it! At one point, I'm sure that they will only be friends 'till the end of the story. At another point, uh-oh...unexpected development occur...are they romantically involved now?! But then it got me hesitate again...nahh, I guess they'll stay as friends. However...again, another unexpected development...I was like, "Usooo!! So they will and are romantically involved?! Someone help me out here!!" >_< Ha! This is the first time I'm having a high-level difficulty in guessing where does the plot goes!!^O^ Exciting! Kaneshiro is actually 29 yrs old, while Kuroki is 42 yrs, believe it or not, they are originally 13 years apart!! However, Kaneshiro's mature looks & Kuroki's girl looks suceed in making them look like only 6 years apart! Sugoi, ne?
I also love the bowling story!! Esp. scenes when Akutagawa & Hitomi pair having the bowling matches...they always discuss these love & life problems during the match. Sometimes, they even have soooo funny conversations!!^^ And, definitely love the way how Akutagawa always finish off the match with "The Golden Bowl" and in a kakkoi way, too!^_^
I just looooooove western 60s songs!!!^O^ So, hearing them as background songs along the dorama....just suit my taste perfectly!!^____^
Overall, didn't expect this to be a great dorama and would be one of my favorite dorama!!^^ The ending? Phewwww....something you have to watch yourself!! Too much worth to be spoiled!^_~

Watched: once(all eps), borrowed the VCD

Likes: Kaneshiro as Akutagawa, Kuroki as Hitomi, Akutagawa & Hitomi's love story, the comical scenes, the exciting bowling scenes, the 60s themesongs

Dislikes: ...that young Hitomi!! Akutagawa's long distance girlfriend. Who came back to destroy Akutagawa & (old)Hitomi's relationship!>_< With that kind of voice(sounds like a rat voice!) and annoying attitude, urgh! I feel like strangling her!


Rate: 8.5
Broadcasted in Japan: TBS Jan-March 2003
Duration: 10 episodes
Scriptwriter: Yumiko Inoue
Themesong: Ride on Time by Yamashita Tatsuro

Synopsis: Kimura plays a young co-pilot who still has plenty of lessons to learn, and the script emphasizes the serious nature of an industry that holds thousands of lives in its hands each day.

Acting performances:

Takuya Kimura as Hajime Shinkai
One of Kimura's best performance, I have to say!!! The way he acted Shinkai...really made me understand why he loves 'flying' so much and whats so good of being a pilot!! I also love the way he acted his emotions esp. in the last 3 eps! Amazing!
Oh, oh, he also looks veeerrrrryyy handsome here!! Looks 10 years younger than he really is! With the very short hair-cut and the pilot uniform with sunglasses?? You DO can imagine, already rite??^_~

Tsutsumi Shinichi as Kazuki Koda
BRILLIANT performance!!!! I'm speechless!! He's a very high-class actor! Well...he is veteran^^ Koda is a very strict capten and do not forgive any small mistakes. He's being very hard on Shinkai at first. He never smile at all. What made me amazed, we can see he's happy or sad, althou still with that kinda face. And not changing his sour face, we can see his eyes are watery when he's sad. Sugoooooiiii!!!!!! He could be my favorite veteran actor!! Esp. after I saw his ridiculous acting in Yamato Nadeshiko!!^^


Kou Shibasaki as Ayumi Ogawa
She gives a fair performance. I dont really like her...xP But yeah, she has cute and sweet scenes with Kimura. But, I just dont see their chemistry together...



First sight: A Kimura's drama which again achieved highest ratings among other dramas of the season!! Of course I have to watch this one!^_~

Comments: Quite slow-moving for the first 5 eps...but, it gets better and better in ep. 6 to the end! Sugoooi! And after you watch the whole drama...try to watch from the beginning again! It wont be boring anymore...coz, you're already know some characters' real relationship and you already know about the incident which connects them ^_~
The characters are very REAL, too!! Some are irritating, but I cannot hate them....none of this drama's characters I can hate, coz they're all so REAL! For some reason, I can understand why they do certain things which looks like bad...
I loooooove the themesong!!! Really sound great!!!^O^ And the BGM too! That one, everytime the plane is ready to take-off!!^^
Overall, its a very good drama about airline crews, how they overcome their problems and how the lives of hundreds passengers are in their hands! But, it wont be my favorite =P

Watched: once, collected the VCD

Likes: The story, the characters, the themesong

Dislikes: the boring dialogues..

Great Teacher Onizuka - GTO


Rate: 9.0
Broadcasted in Japan: FujiTV July-Sep 1998
Duration: 12 Episodes + 1 Special + 1 Movie
Scriptwriter: Kazuhiko(the adapted manga originally written by Tooru Fujisawa)
Themesong: Poison by Takashi Sorimachi

Synopsis: Eikichi Onizuka, a graduate from a third-grade university cum a gangster head, has always wanted to be a great teacher. An opportunity has came when a school is short of a teacher and he happens to get employed! Although his gangster status and attitude create lots of headaches for many, his warmth towards teaching gradually touches them and gains their acceptance.

Acting performances:

Takashi Sorimachi as Onizuka
SUPERB!! BRAVO! EXCELLENT! MAGNIFICENT! Okay, I'm out of word..=P He acted Onizuka just like in the comic/manga!! Okay, maybe sometimes a little bit different...but, I definitely enjoy his performance as Onizuka! It's a little hard for me to see him in other roles, coz his 'image' of Onizuka have already stuck on my mind! Sorimachi is Onizuka, Onizuka is Sorimachi! Such a great performance!!

Nanako Matsushima as Fuyutsuki-sensei
A sweet woman yet sometimes ridiculous too! Love it whenever she's quarreling with Onizuka. And, I think Sorimachi and Matsushima DOES make a great pair on-screen AND off-screen!!^_~

First sight: I was just changing channels on my TV and I caught GTO on Phoenix channel(CableTV), I don't understand the language at all(since it was dubbed in Chinese), but Onizuka's attitude and style of talking got me intrigued...I started watching from then on, and can't help to buy it when I found the VCD!!^^ I'm collecting the manga(s) too now!

Comments: Probably not my favorite, but indeed one of the BEST dorama I've ever watched!! Lack of love story, yet VERY entertaining!! The story is just interesting and very original...also, love the comedy!!^^ This drama made me wish there's a fun and cool teacher like that in my school!! =P

Watched: twice(all eps), bought the VCD

Likes: Eikichi Onizuka's character, the comedy(makes you laugh your brains out!), Onizuka's way on handling his students PLUS the message in it.

Dislikes: Ironically, despite the fact I like the character, yet I dislikes some of Onizuka's annoying habits ^_~

HaruRanman(Spring in Bloom)

Rate: 7.0
Broadcasted in Japan: KTV April-June 2002
Duration: 12 episodes
Themesong: Try by LIV

Synopsis: The story centers around Akane Kawasaki(Rie Tomosaka), an interior designer, who wants to rent a really nice apartment, but can't afford it on her own. So, she holds roommate interviews and eventually sets on Souta Mishima(Manabu Oshio). With Souta comes his friend and senpai at his company (he's a tourguide rides with the tour buses in Tokyo...and holds the flags), Kanzaki, who's married, but dating Tamaki. Then you have "player" Jouji(an actor) who's going out with Rinko. The 6 gather at Souta-Akane's apartment every night-much to her consternation at the start. But, of course, she warms to them all and they become her friends as well. And as with all groups of friends, you have their trials and tribulations. In between all of it are Souta and Akane, who grow to be friends in their own right...and grow to like being roommates-even with their shaky beginning.

Acting performances:

Manabu Oshio as Souta Mishima
He's very kakkoi! And ridiculously funny here! Sometimes the way he acted his role here reminds me of Takenouchi's Ryunosuke of Dekichatta Kekkon^^ I don't know why I don't like Oshio in Love Revolution!!>_< Turns out, he's an adorable actor after watching him in this dorama =P

Rie Tomosaka as Akane Kawasaki
She annoyed me very VERY much in the beginning!! She over-do her stupid expressions, makes her looks like an idiot!>_< Can't stand her! At one point, I even think, "Can she act?!". She gets better later, though. Thank goodness! Oh, well...don't like her, don't hate her either as an actress ^_^v

First sight: Romantic comedy! My favorite genre! So, when my friend offered me the tapes...why not?

Comments: Comedy, six friends, gather every night in an apartment owns by 2 of them to chat and play cards, one of the 6 friends is a stage play actor...uh-oh, is this the popular American sitcom, "Friends" copycat?!? Quite suspicious at first...but after few episodes, naahh....although, we might say that this is the Japanese version of 'Friends'!!^_^
The comedy scenes are not that funny, although some of them can make me laugh out loud^^ I find the six chat in the apartment takes too long and most of them are boring. However, I love the plots for every episode!^^ Interesting and funny! I also love Souta & Akane's friendship!! Very cute! I can't wait 'til they get romantically involved, and that's not until the end of episode 8, where Akane realizes her true feelings for Souta. But...when they do get romantically involved....I felt, I like them better as friends!!>_< Coz their love story is dissapointing, no excitement at all!! The ending also only's quite easy to guess the ending.
Loooove the themesong!!^^ I find myself humming to this song these days =P Try by LIV, a band which has Oshio as the vocalist!!
Overall, a good dorama with friendship & romance as theme...but not that great, either^^

Watched: once(all eps), borrowed the tapes

Likes: Oshio as Souta, Souta & Akane's friendship, themesong

Dislikes: ...some boring scenes...

Hatsu Taiken(First Time)


Rate: 7.5
Broadcasted in Japan: FujiTV January-March 2002
Duration: 11 episodes
Themesong: You no Ataru Sakamichi by DAI

Synopsis: Everyone has a story about their "first time." Here we've got a 27 year-old woman, her name is Machi Takanashi. She's a vet. Watching Bruce Lee's movies is her hobby. And a virgin. She then meet her childhood crush...that's when she starts to set her target ^_^

Acting performances:

Miki Mizuno as Machi Takanashi
Machi is such a funny, funny character!! She is so worried of the fact that she's still a virgin up to 27 years of age! She is a vet, her hobby is to drink beers while watching Bruce Lee's movies, and she likes to imitate Bruce Lee's moves^^ Her motto of life, adapts Bruce Lee's motto: Don't think! Feel! ^_^;
Miki Mizuno is a cute and funny actress!(reminds me of Takako Matsu's way of acting more or so =P) I love her here!! Especially, when she acts embarrased because of the silly things she done, so funny!

Naohito Fujiki as Takumi Hirota(Fusa-chan)
Fujiki won a Best Supporting Actor award acted in this dorama. Why supporting actor? I wouldn't be surprise, coz he didn't show up as much as Mizuno here. The story is pretty much about Machi herself. So, Hirota only considered as a supporting character.
I like Hirota's character!! Such a jerk, yet in a cute way =P But...what happened with his character towards the end?? He seems loose his characteristics and became plain & serious....

First sight: I really like Miki Mizuno in Beautiful Life!!^^ Then, I read the synopsis in FujiTV's homepage, and got sooooo interested with it, because it has a funny theme/story!!^_^ Moreover, Mizuno is paired with Fujiki here, who wouldn't be interested?

Comments: Since I'm a fan of romantic comedy dramas, of course I love it!! You can find lots of funny scenes here!^^ I, especially, love Machi and Hirota's sweet-cute-funny-romantic scenes!! But, I gotta say..there were not enough romantic scenes!!>_< Probably, there are only 1-2 romantic scenes on every episode. And, I don't really like the slow-paced plot, everything goes so slowly...and you'll wonder, when will this two ever get together?!?!?O_O And when they finally'd think,'s the start of the love story's conflict...but then in a short moment, poof! The story ends...
I just kept wondering why is the ending have to be like that? It's so unnecessary, IMHO. Which later, left me unsatisfied with the ending. Probably, it'd be best if they end the story on episode 9 ^_^
Oh, yeah...since Machi is a vet, you can see lots of cute puppies and kittens here!!! There's even this giant dog yet very cute!!!^__^
I love the opening song!!!^O^ It's in French, but it's really good to hear! Love the violin background songs too....we rarely hear backgrounds played with violin, right?^^ In this dorama, ALL background musics played with violin, the cheerful ones and the melancholic ones.
Overall, it's a good romantic comedy dorama! If you're a fan of Mizuno or Fujiki, this one is a MUST-WATCH!!! They both have good characters here!^_^ Storywise, I'd give the show a 7, but Miki Mizuno and the musics/songs made it worth a 7.5!!^_~

Watched: once, borrowed from a friend(thx to Fitri for the VCD and the screencaps!!^O^)

Likes: Mizuno as Machi, the opening song, background songs, the cute and romantic scenes

Dislikes: Slow-paced plot, the ending



Rate: 8.5
Broadcasted in Japan: FujiTV January-March 2001
Duration: 11 episodes
Scriptwriters: Ken Otake, Yasushi Fukuda, and Takehiko Hata
Themesong: Can You Keep A Secret by Hikaru Utada

Synopsis: Kohei Kuryu, played by Takuya Kimura, is a former juvenile delinquent that drops out of junior high and goes on to earn a high school equivalency diploma. After passing the law board exams, Kuryu becomes a prosecutor. Not your typical prosecutor, which is quickly seen through the clothes that he wears, Kuryu possesses quick instincts and a kind of cleverness that only someone raised on the streets could have.
Takako Matsu plays the role of public prosecutor Maiko Amamiya. The shrewd Amamiya, who has her eyes set on passing the exam to become a deputy prosecutor, tries her best to be noticed by her boss. Kuryu, on the other hand, after earning a reputation for doing top-notch work is transferred to Amamiya's division, and finally opens his eyes to the possibility of promotion. Unfortunately, his unprecedented work behavior abruptly brings things to a halt.
Although earning a reputation as a bad apple, the influence from Kuryu's strong pursuit of justice slowly begins to change things around him. This drama is filled with it all; love, laughs and lots of emotion.

Acting performances:

Takuya Kimura as Kuryu
I've watched Asunaro Hakusho, Long Vacation, Love Generation, and Beautiful Life. When I watched this drama, "At last!! A different characteristic!" ^_~ He perform such a great performance here, and pretty different from other usual roles, too!

Takako Matsu as Amamiya
Another superb performance by Matsu!! Like her character here! Together with Kimura, they made a great on-screen duo! No wonder this drama is unbeatable!!! ^_^

First sight: Obviously, interested ever since I finished watching Love Generation and became a fan of Kimura and Matsu!!! At first, I kinda hesitated to buy this drama, coz I thought the dorama is serious with 'dark' atmosphere with no romance at all! Turns is far from what I've imagined!!! Pheww....

Comments: I luv this one!!^O^ Probably, not the best in my opinion....but the composition is just perfect : comedy, hidden-romantic, and y'know...sometimes, interesting cases! Maybe, some people find it boring...but I don't!! The HILLARIOUS funny scenes over-shadowed the boring cases =P I also love Kuryu and Amamiya's on & off chemistry here^^ Kimura & Matsu is just the best duo EVER!!!

Watched: twice(all eps), bought the VCD

Likes: Kuryu and Amamiya pairing! The comedic scenes! Relationships of the prosecutors and administrators in the office Kuryu & Amamiya works in! The daily life stories!

Dislikes: The boring cases...-_-

Hito ni Yasashiku (Basically Nice/Be Nice To People)

Rate: 9.5
Broadcasted in Japan: FujiTV January-March 2002
Duration: 11 episodes
Themesong: Yume by The High-Lows

Synopsis: This is a story about 3 men that live together. One morning they wake up to find out that they are now fathers; which helps them to grow right beneath their own eyes.
Zen, Taro, Ken. Although different ages, all three were known as the toughest cats in Harajuku Middle School. Now the 3 of them live together in a house they call "Peace." It may sound like a nice place to live, but in actuality, it is closer to poverty than you can imagine. But even so, they bide by their motto of "a cheerful, fun, and funky" life.
Suddenly one day, they find a 6 years old boy, Akira, on their doorstep. With Akira, they find a letter from his mother that reads "please take care of him for a little while." The bad part, which they soon find out is that Akira isn't like them. He's been raised in a glass house, and is "soft," quiet unlike the 3 of them, which proves to change their lives as they once knew it.

Acting performances:

Shingo Katori as Zen Maeda
Zen looks very loud on the outside yet very kind and gentle on the inside. Zen is just a lovable and adorable person once you get to know him for awhile. Shingo acted him wonderfully!!
And, among the 3 fathers, Zen is the closest one with Akira. I dont know whether its bcoz of the script or not, but Shingo and the kid's chemistry are wonderful...they really hit it off each other! Very cute! Love all interactions and dialogues between Zen and Akira. Shingo is just very good with kids!!!^^

Kenta Suga as Akira Igarashi
This little kid can really act!! And he's always the one who made my waterworks x) Coz his face is so innocent and his words are soo sincere, so touching. I love this kid!! He acted as a smart and introvert type of boy...and very kawaaaaaiii!! Feels like pinching him all over!!^_~

Mitsuru Matsuoka as Taro Yamada
Taro acted as the dandy one and always flirting with girls...well, his acting is good.

Koji Kato as Ken
Have never seen him act, I can only say he give a fair performance...^^

First sight: Have always interested in this one, cos it Shingo's and its a comedy. Plus, a very interesting plot too. But, never expected, it would be that goooooood for me!!!^^

Comments: I LOOOOOOOOOVE THIS DORAMA!!!!\^O^/ And I think I still dont say that quite loud yet x) You will be laughing your brains out in the beginning of each episode and you'd be in tears of buckets in the end of the episode!! Seriously, I even run out of tissues, and my shirt's sleeves are wet watching this! Cant help it, this one involves little kids...they looked so innocent and their words sounds so can it not knocked my heart??
Sugooooi, this drama!! Great funny scenes, great touching scenes....and the dialogues....gosh, those deep-meaning dialogues just really strike my heart!
You know, when you re-watch a drama, you will skip some boring parts or even boring eps?! Well....when I re-watch this drama, I watched ALL 11 eps and did not skip ANY parts at all!!! And it still made me laugh and in tears!! Amazing!! That's why, I love this drama so much!! It's really fun to watch! And such great storyline! I just love it! Overall....looooooooooooove it!!!!^____^w

Watched: twice, collected the VCD

Likes: Shingo as Zen, Akira, the guys' relationship with Akira, the story, the atmosphere, the comical scenes, the dialogue with deep-meaning, the touching scenes......oh, man, can i just say, that I love EVERYTHING about this drama?? x)

Dislikes: It is confirmed.....NONE!!!!^_~

Honke no Yome(Daughter in Law)


Rate: 9.0
Broadcasted in Japan: YTV/NTV Jan-March 2002
Duration: 10 episodes
Themesong: Marry Me by Vivian Hsu

Synopsis: When Nozomi, a Taiwanese-Japanese raised around the world, and Shinji, a Japanese businessman in Taipei, meet, fall in love and marry, they seem to have an ideal lifestyle. Living in an upscale Taipei flat, both are on good career tracks, and enjoy their free time together until... one day, Shinji is summoned home to Japan to take over as head of the household. Unable to resist his familial demands, he agrees to give up his job, return to the countryside, and fulfill the duties his grandmother requests. Unfortunately, Nozomi never expected such a thing to happen, and she is further shocked to discover that his family, and his grandmother in particular, is not warm and welcoming to her. In fact, it is a trial by fire for her to learn the customs and lifestyle of a feudal Japanese home and deal with the old matriarch who refuses any change, demanding that others comply with the traditions of her home. Nozomi must face these demands, and the strain on her marriage and career, or follow her own mother's advice to "get out of that house now!"

Acting performances:

Vivian Hsu as Nozomi Yamada
She played a mixed Japanese-Taiwanese woman who married a Japanese guy from such a strict traditional family! I think she played her role very good and cute!!^^

First sight: Interested only because of Shunsuke Nakamura, I like him very much ever since I watched him on NAOMI^^

Comments: This is the BEST family comedy drama I ever watched!!! Suki! Suki! Suki! This is not those ordinary modern family drama, but it's a big family which still holds the traditional ways. And the drama sets on a village, where relationships with neighbours are still very close. Very interesting!
Not to mention, the tradition of daughter in laws, which needs approval from the strict Obaa-san(grandmother), and they have to work very hard in the house with bare hands and no electrical tools allowed. Funny thing is, Shinji's mother, who also a 'honke no yome' or 'daughter in law of the family', is also given lots of works by the 3 ditsy aunties, yet she has a sweet and patient characteristic. She's a great tutor for Nozomi, the ditsy and modern girl. She teach her everything about being a 'honke no yome'.
Every episode, starts with a new problem, and sometimes the scenes are so touching ;_; There's a Romeo and Juliet-like story, where Yamada family and Okuyama family are long-time enemies, but Shinji's older sister and Okuyama's only son are in love. There's also a time where Shinji's ex-girlfriend return to the village, and creates a havoc between Shinji and Nozomi. And, lots of other interesting stories!!
I love all the messages here, like how to trust your own husband...or when Nozomi is upset because she's not allowed to use electric tools, she said, "So daughter in laws are to replace electric tools?", obaa-san answered, "No, but electric tools can not replace daughter in law's role!" ^_~
Overall, it's a wonderful, hillarious, touching and heart-warming family comedy drama!!! Worth to buy!^_____^

Watched: twice, borrowed from a friend

Likes: the story, the comedy, Vivian Hsu as Nozomi, Shunsuke as Shinji, the chemistry between the family members, the unique Japanese family tradition showed

Dislikes: Hmm...I can't really think of any, but perhaps...the fact that there are NO opening or ending sequence =(

Hoshi no Kinka(Heaven's Coins)


Rate: Part 1 = 7.0 ; Part 2 = 8.0
Broadcasted in Japan: Part 1 = NTV Apr-June 1995 ; Part 2 = NTV Oct-Dec 1996
Duration: Part 1 = 12 Episodes ; Part 2 = 12 episodes + 1 special
Scriptwriter: Junya Yamasaki
Themesong Part 1: Aoi Usagi by Noriko Sakai
Themesong Part 2: Kagami no Doresu by Noriko Sakai

Synopsis: Part 1 = Three years ago, because of a dispute over his father's corruption, Shuichi left home and settled down in a small clinic in Hokkaido. There, he met a hearing and vocal impaired girl, Aya, and fell deeply in love with her. However, upon recieving an invitation from a Tokyo well-known hospital, he decided to make a short trip back. But, he never returns ... Aya, being very worried, goes to Tokyo too, and is shocked to find Shuichi injured and suffering from a memory loss.
Part 2 = After living together in Hokkaido for around a year, Takumi and Aya return to Tokyo to attend Sonoko's wedding. Knowing that Aya still couldn't forget Shuichi, Takumi decides to give way and let Aya return to Hokkaido with his brother. Just when they are flying off, Takumi has an accident and his legs could no longer move. Feeling that Takumi has always being very good to her, Aya chooses to live with him, and painfully breaks off with Shuichi. She takes up two jobs to uphold the home, but the depressed Takumi starts thinking Aya as pitying him after some talks of others, and bangs all his anger on her.

Acting performances:

Noriko Sakai as Aya
Such a great performance as a mute girl!! And, Noriko is just sooo sweet here...^_^ I think her expressions in the ending of Part 2 is superb!! Indescribable!

Takao Ohsawa as Shuichi
Don't really like him >_< And, I've only seen him in this drama...his character is just too indecisive and kind of whiny...don't like the guy, don't like the character...what more can I say?

Yutaka Takenouchi as Takumi
I love Takumi!!^^ He's the type of character who you'll hate so much in the beginning, but totally fall in love with towards the end =P Takenouchi definitely gave another magnificent performance here, he won the 'Best New Actor' award in Golden Arrow Award 1996. I started to like Takenouchi here(this is the drama I watched RIGHT before I watched Dekichatta Kekkon and he became my no. 1 fave actor ^_^). I wish his character end up with Aya =(

First sight: I was not intrigued at first since Takenouchi's character, Takumi, is such a jerk!! But then, towards the ending of Part 1, I begin to watch, since Takumi slowly changed to a nice person, and he sacrificed so much for Aya.

Part 1 = I usually don't like sad dramas, but I got intrigued with Takenouchi's acting and the sign language in this drama!!^_^ And, I ended up liking it so much!! Esp. Takenouchi's character, Takumi!! =P
Part 2 = Although Part 1's story is better, I like Part 2 better coz Takumi got more important role in this part 2!!!^_^ Still...the ending is just too sad....and why can't Aya and Takumi just be together????? =(

Watched: once, on cable TV(Phoenix)

Likes: Takumi's character, Part 1's ending, the heart-wrenching scenes, the whole story, the red-white flower scene, the scene in the airport where Takumi bid Aya goodbye!

Dislikes: Shuichi's character, Part 2's ending(I wish the story would just stop on Part 1 so let Takumi and Aya be happy ever after! ^_~).

Ichiban Taisetsu na Hito
~Precious Together~



Rate: 8.0
Broadcasted in Japan: TBS April-June 1997
Duration: 11 episodes
Themesong: Starting Over by John Lennon

Synopsis: This is a bittersweet tale of Kohei and Miwa, who have been friends since childhood and now discover themselves in a deep yet fragile romance. Five years of their lives are presented in an almost lyrical succession of images, as they enter their twenties and tentatively explore their emerging love, striving to protect each other while not jeopardizing the mutual support and encouragement of their longtime friendship.

Acting performances:

Shingo Katori as Kohei
I dont really like Kohei's character...I dont know, he's just too mellow and in a pensive mood. But, I like him when he become playful and desicive^^
Oh, what am I saying...Shingo looks soooooooo good here, very very kakkoi and kawaii, too!! So, no matter how bad things he has can I hate this guy?? Haha...okay, okay...this time I'm really biased! Gomen...cant help it!! x)


Arisa Mizuki as Miwa
I love her!! Miwa is a fun girl and she really love Kohei very much. And yes, I come to like this actress very much!!^^ I even bought her latest drama!



First sight: Do u really have to ask? Why I got this in the first place? Pfft...=P

Comments: This is a very very sweet love story!!! And, at last!!!!! I've watched another Shingo's romantic dorama where he's the leading actor!!! It's a cute and sweet story! My favorite Shingo's dorama next to Hito ni Yasashiku! Objectively, I'll put it on par with LoveStory. Subjectively, I love it better, since Shingo is the male lead...heheh...jyoudan...bcoz I really like the story!!!^^
Kohei(Shingo) and Miwa(Arisa Mizuki) are bestfriends since elementary school until highschool. After Miwa graduated, she left Yokohama for a year, but then went back home and meet Kohei again. They're very close with each other....Miwa really knows Kohei's mother well. Kohei knows Miwa's parents too. At times, Kohei got home and would suddenly find Miwa eating dinner in his house....then, they would chit-chat in Kohei's room....have numerous of cute quarrels, too!!!
They're dating other people...and would talk about each of their problems through the phone at midnight. Or, suddenly Miwa who's coming to Kohei's house at midnight. They even once went to the sea by train at midnight!!
They tease each other a lot too, like, "So, u remember my birthday? Yappari, Kohei wa atashi no koto suki nan da!!". And he would answer, "Baka!! Aren't you the one who had crush on me since highschool?".
One night...they're in this place where kids used to write their name and the person they like on the wall. Kohei remembered he once wrote on the wall, but forgotten who the girl he wrote. Miwa said, "Ah, of course, you must've written my name!! Desshou ne??". Kohei answered, "Baka!! Impossible!". They try to look for it, they found it...and turns out, Kohei really did write her name besides his!! Haha...I cannot describe both of their expressions.....but, I loooove it! Mix of nervous, awkward, and amused? I'm not sure...x)
The story takes turn, when they challenge each other, that even thou they kiss...nothing will change, and they would stay bestfriends. So, Kohei kissed Miwa on the lips gently...3 times!!O_o The 3rd one is a long one, and I think Kohei got really sunked into it and starts to grab her arm....=P But then, Miwa starts to back off, and running leaving Kohei, who seems looked really troubled! Hah...their friendship is now ruined!!! xP Oh well, I'll just stop here.....
I'm very excited about this romantic drama where Shingo is the lead and turns out not bad either!! I love Kohei and Miwa's relationship as bestfriends and actually who really care bout each other and eventually, love each other. Their scenes are very sweet and cute!
Shingo and Arisa have a very good chemistry!! I love seeing them together! They looked perfect together! And, there's a rumour that Arisa had a crush on Shingo while the filming of this drama^^ Too bad...Shingo already have a girlfriend by that time =( Hmm...I begin to suspect, in Bistro Smap when Arisa became the guest in 97, is that why Shingo-Tsuyoshi's team won?!? Haha!^^ Would never know! But, I'm happy to see Arisa give Shingo a kiss on his cheek on the show =P

Watched: twice, collected the VCD

Likes: Shingo and Arisa's chemistry, the romantic scenes, the themesong

Dislikes: I'm pretty much angry with the ending ~_~

Iguana no Musume

Rate: 6.0
Broadcasted in Japan: TV Asahi Apr-June 1996
Duration: 10 episodes
Themesong: Your Song by Elton John

Synopsis: This is a drama based on the manga strip. Rika (Kanno) is a high school senior with no self esteem. She thinks she is an iguana. Why? Her mother (Kawashima) claims that whenever she sees Rika she sees an iguana instead of a real human. Because of this, Rika has never received or was shown any love by her mother. Rika' younger sister Mami (Enomoto) has been getting all of the love and attention by the mother. Rika likes Noboru (Okada) a lot but can't tell him her feelings. Mikami (Komine) is jealous of Rika and refuses to let Noboru go out with her. Kaori (Sato) plays Rika's friend and is always encouraging her. Will Rika end up with Noboru? Will he turn her away if he finds out she is an iguana?

Acting performances:

Miho Kanno as Rika
I don't really like her in this drama, since she played an iguana girl(lame reason, I know). But, my views on her changes when I watch her other dramas, Koi no Kiseki, where she played an opposite character than the one in this drama. Since then, I think she's a great actress!!

First sight: A very weird story, I thought. The story is not that good actually, but I was interested on what will happen to the iguana girl in the end, since it's a unique story(kind of like a 'Little Mermaid' fairytale)!

Comments: I don't really like this drama...the atmosphere is just so weird and 'dark'...and it's just very disgusting whenever the iguana's face showed up >_< The story isn't that good either!

Watched: once(almost all eps), on cable TV(TVBS Asia)

Likes: The fairytale-alike background musics!!^_^

Dislikes: The iguana's face!>_<

Ii Hito


Rate: 7.0
Broadcasted in Japan: FujiTV April-June 1997
Duration: 11 episodes
Themesong: Celery[Serori] by SMAP

Synopsis: After graduating from college, Yuuji lands the job of his dreams at the company that manufactures his favorite running shoes. The complete sincerity and selflessness that Yuuji shows everyone he meets causes many to dismiss him as naive or simply stupid. But when his good deeds start paying off, his co-workers begin to come around to the idea that nice guys don't have to finish last.

Acting performances:

Tsuyoshi Kusanagi as Yuuji Kitano
Yuuji is soooooo Tsuyoshi!!^^ Haha...a very kind-hearted man, love to help people and just 'angelic'!!^^

Miho Kanno as Taeko
Kanno is very cute and she plays as Yuuji's cute girlfriend. Their relationship is very cute, either!^^

First sight: Sounds interesting and funny! Haha....and pssst....hidden reason is...bcoz all members of Smap(except Goro) made appearances in the drama ^_~

Comments: Hmm...the story is so-so for me. Its mostly about how to save the company/departement, Yuuji works in. What's interesting is Yuuji's 'angelic' character!! Helping people in trouble on the street. In a marathon match, one of his opponent's leg was hurt, he stopped and help him first before continue running!O_o Once he see a trash on the street, he'll pick it up and even the garbage can is far away, he'll run first put the trash inside, before he continue walking! Tskk...tsk..tskk...what a good person!!^_~
Love his cute dialogues and relationship with his girlfriend, too...Taeko! They're so cute together!!^^
In episode 1, Nakai appeared as the guy who get in the taxi, kinda 'steal' the taxi Yuuji already call from afar. In episode 8, when Yuuji is running to the office, he bumped a guy riding a bicycle, that's Yukio...hehe, Kimura's character in GIFT!!^_~(Tsuyoshi as Yuuji also appeared in GIFT, so its like a crossover) Too bad, we can't see Kimura's face, we only get to see his back =( In the last episode, Shingo is a guy who is trying to be accepted in the company and ask Tsuyoshi for advice, I think his appearance is the funniest and he got close-up, too!!!^_~
I loooooooove the themesong!!! Its actually my #1 ultimate favorite Smap song!! I love Serori!!!^O^

Watched: once, collected the VCD

Likes: Yuuji, the funny scenes, the themesong

Dislikes: ...well, the story is so-so to me, does that count?

Itazura Na Kiss


Rate: 9.0
Broadcasted in Japan: TV Asahi October-December 1996
Duration: 9 episodes
Scriptwriter: unknown(the adapted manga originally written by Kaoru Tada)
Themesong: Steady by SPEED

Synopsis: This story is based on a Margaret Comics title by the same name. Aihara (Sato Aiko) is a high school senior at St. Tonan(sp?) Gakuen . She is not your studious type of student. Two years ago at their opening ceremony as sophomores, she runs in the hallway and bumps into Irie Naoki (Kashiwabara Takashi), kissing him in the process (kind of similar to Kimagure Orange Road when Kosuke kissed Hikaru). Ever since then, AIhara has had a major crush on Naoki. Naoki is the school president, he's a star basketball player, and he is at the top of his class. He is in all respect the model student. On her 18th birthday, Aihara tries to give Naoki a love letter finally expressing her feelings for him. Naoki tells her, ' I don't like dumb girls' and leaves Aihara and her girlfriends in the dust. Aihara is crushed. That night she goes home and sees it on fire. It all burns to the ground. Her father is a Japanese restaurant cook. Luckily he wasn't in the home. It can't get any worse than this. Later on, her father tells her that they are moving into a friend's house temporarily and will live with the family. Aihara meets her uncle and aunt, who were childhood friends of her father. The aunt (Asada Miyoko) takes an immediate liking to Aihara telling her that she has always wanted a daughter and now Aihara can be her 'daughter ' . Aihara has a room for herself but in the process Yuki (age 9) has to move into his brother's room. Yuki doesn't like Aihara because she's in his room and also he thinks she will be a big nuisance to his life. You see, Yuki is a very smart kid and he wants to be like his older brother, which happens to be Naoki. Naoki doesn't like the situation either since he knows Aihara likes him.

Acting performances:

Sato Aiko as Kotoko Aihara
She's willing to ruin her own image by acting this OVER-ACTING, RIDICULOUS, STUPID girl!!!!^____^ She's very good, I'd say!! She portrayed the role perfectly!!! Usually, in comedy scenes, what made you laugh is the ridiculous guy...but, in this's the girl who will make you laugh so hard!!!

Takashi Kashiwabara(Kassy) as Naoki Irie(Irie-kun)
Kakkkoooiii!!! Oh, gee...I can't help but to fall in love with Kassy since I watched this drama!! He's just too cool!! And sooo handsome!! Luv him! Luv him! Luv him! Luv him! Luv him!

First sight: Got interested from the very first minute of the 1st episode!! It's hillarious!! Never missed to watch it since then PLUS recorded it with my VCR, too ^_~

Comments: EVERY episode with interesting storyline!! Not even ONE second it let you to get bored! Actually, lacks of memorable moments, but the hillarious scenes and interesting story managed to cover it! A VERY satisfying ending, too!! This is actually the drama that triggered me to collect more doramas!!!^_~

Watched: +10-12 times(all eps), on cable TV(TVBS Asia), recorded to VHS tapes

Likes: Naoki! The hillarious scenes! The story!

Dislikes: NONE!^____^

Itsumo Futari de (Always The Two of Us)   

Rate: 8.0
Broadcasted in Japan: FujiTV January-March 2003
Duration: 11 episodes
Themesong: ALWAYS by Ryota Mitsunaga
Scriptwriter: Yuko Aizawa

Synopsis: Mizuho Tanimachi has big dreams of living in Daikanyama and becoming a famous writer. In the middle of the winter, this strong-willed 26-year-old moves to Tokyo from the snowy countryside. Never doubting her ability, she keeps telling herself that if her desire to realize her dreams is strong enough, they will come true. What is waiting for her in Tokyo though, is something altogether different.

Kenta Morinaga is an up-and-coming variety program scenario writer. Kenta moved to Tokyo five years ago, and with luck on his side, he became well-known in no time. Kenta and Mizuho are from the same hometown, and were friends growing up, but their friendship never blossomed into anything else. "Hachiko," as Kenta was known as when he was growing up, just goes with the flow and doesn't really have any big aspirations for himself.

These two, who aren't having much luck with work or with their love lives, suddenly run into each other one day in Tokyo in the middle of winter.
Being 26 is a tough point in life because it's too late to think of new dreams, but on the other hand, it's too late to abandon old ones...

Acting performances:

Takako Matsu as Mizuho Tanimachi
The usual Matsu comedy character!^^ heehee.... I think she has always been acting the same character-style ever since Omiai Kekkon's Setsuko ;P HERO's Amamiya was also pretty much the same. And so does Mizuho Tanimachi. But I LOVE it!!^^ I love her acting this way, coz it makes Matsu adorably funny and cute!!
Mizuho's dream since childhood is to be a writer, but no one thinks she is capable of being a writer, none of her friends and family like her writings. And moreover, it is herself later, who realized that she is not capable of being a writer.
After weeks of depressed, Mizuho tries her best to stand up and gather her spirit again and start a new dream, to be a good editor, as her boss said she is really capable of being an editor and have talents for it.

Kenji Sakaguchi as Kenta Morinaga (Hachi)
He is Mizuho's childhood bestfriend, who usually always follow her everywhere. So Mizuho have always called him Hachi(the name of a dog from a famous movie^^;;). Now, Hachi is already an adult man, and Mizuho is quite surprised with his change of character, different with little Hachi long ago.
Sakaguchi is quite funny in this drama! Kakkoi and cute at the same time. I like him^^ Esp. his expressions in the last episode! Cho funny!!!!!*lol*

Takashi Kashiwabara(ep. 1-2) & Shingo Katsurayama(ep. 3-11) as Naoyuki Okuda
Daisukiiiiii~~!!!! This is my most favorite character in the drama for the first 2 episodes!!! x) Too bad....Kassy only acted the role for 2 eps...he got neck injury, so he was replaced in episode 3 by Shingo Katsurayama.
Naoyuki is Mizuho's boss in a little publishing company. He has a lazy manner, he handed all works to Mizuho, and then all he does in the office is playing computer games all day x) He also has a crush on Mizuho!^-^ I love Naoyuki and Mizuho's chemistry!! I really like Naoyuki's character....and even Kassy was replaced then, I still like the character very much....*sigh*....if only Kassy acted the role till the end =(
Katsurayama acted Naoyuki quite okay, but somehow I feel he tried too hard to act the role the way Kassy did.....and he's not as handsome as I like the character less x) Bottom line is....I looooooove Kassy as Naoyuki!!!*o*
If only, he was not replaced, I would've been rooting on Mizuho&Naoyuki instead of Mizuho&Hachi!! >=) Kassy definitely snatched Sakaguchi's spotlight...tee-hee...

Comments: A drama about reaching a dream, and from the romantic side, 2 bestfriends grow special feelings for each other. There's nothing impressive about the romantic plot, typical romantic comedy.....altho I love some scenes^^ But I really like Mizuho's plot of being a writer/editor!!^.^ So I love Mizuho's job/work story alot more than the romantic plot! And perhaps because Mizuho interacts more with Naoyuki in her work story....heehee...=P
The themesong is really goood!! Always by Ryota Mitsunaga! Favorite is the acapella version of the song.....suteki~!!!
Overall, the drama is an enjoyable drama and a must-see for all Matsu's fans!!^^ I like it!! But not too much...=P

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