Category Archives: First Impressions (Jdrama)

First Impression: Sachiiro no One Room

I haven’t written a First Impression post for a long while now. I kinda miss making one. Unlike recaps, my first impressions are free-flowing. I can express anything I want. There’s a sense of freedom in it. And I’m not bounded by the script or plot.

Anyways, here’s one interesting Japanese drama for you. The unique and intriguing plot got me really interested. I mean, how can a kidnap victim-kidnapper relationship fall under romance category? At least, it should have been on psychological-drama or something on the darker side of the spectrum.

Here’s the synopsis from Mangarock:

One day, a 14-year-old girl was kidnapped by a masked boy. Even while the news shows her name and face everywhere and interviews her weeping parents, this girl knows it’s all fake — she knows this because those very same parents abused her day and night.

Now this girl, re-named “Sachi,” lives in a small one-room apartment with her kidnapper, the walls full of photos of her. Even though he’s her stalker, Sachi wants to stay here, because she’s never met someone who loved her so much. She proposes that once they escape the police and her parents for good, that they get married — in return, her captor promises to give her the happiness she always wanted. This is the story of their hidden life and strange love.

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First Impression: Q10

Before I post the summarecap for Q10, I’ve decided to write an impression first. I’m loving this drama already!

Here’s a detailed synopsis from Jdrama Weblog:

One day, while under the influence of alcohol, Kishimoto Jiro, the principal of Shikahamabashi High School picks up a “girl” from the garbage. The next morning, that girl is sleeping in the school premises when she is found by Fukai Heita. The robot girl suddenly comes alive and Heita names her ‘Q10′. ‘Q10′ starts to adore Heita, its godparent, and Heita, who has not been popular with girls all the while, is bewildered. The robot ‘Q10′ is taught by Heita about humans and begins to learn …

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First Impression: Joker Yurusarezaru Sosaken

This jdrama is refreshingly disturbing and brutally entertaining! Yeah, I also find my words contradictory, but what can I say? There’s a lot going on. Really, a lot! I’ve been watching crime jdramas for years now, but Joker sure stands out on this genre. I’ve always hated violence, but watching the first episode made me think twice. Just like its premise, this jdrama will surely make us understand the darker side of humanity.

Episode 1 opens with a bang. What crime could solicit extreme sympathy and hatred than a brutal murder of an innocent 8-year-old, right? Imagine, an 8-year-old child! He’s got a bright future, until a bloody psychopath sets his eye on him.  Poor child!  It’s not even enough that Kiuchi  killed Miku-kun, he even laughs heartily while hearing the mother’s desperate cries. And to top it all, Kiuchi will get away with it!  The very own justice system couldn’t even bring him  down. Argg..what’s happening with our world?

After watching the episode, I’m still torn between the issue of killing or not killing the freakin’child murderer! Can crime be stopped with another crime? I firmly believe that it can’t. But it really broke my heart, hearing the father’s sentiments. It’s quite revolting that even if there were enough evidences, justice can’t still be served. So, just for a second there, I wanted Kiuchi to be punished. If not by law, then by any other means.

Enough with the ranting about Crime 1. Got a little hyped up, sorry. All in all, the jdrama is quite intriguing. Some says the plot is similar to Dexter. But I don’t really care. I haven’t watch Dexter, so I can’t really tell. All I can say is, I love the complexity of the characters.And I love how the drama tackles the issue on injustice.

The lead Date Kazuyoshi (Sakai) is creepy. Haha! There’s no other word to describe him. Okay, so there’s another one, it’s weird. Haha! Creepy and weird! Not your ideal hero, ne? Well, he’s like that in front of his peers, but when he’s alone, all gentleness vanishes in thin air. His cruel understanding of injustice roots from childhood. So, to some point, you can’t really blame him for being brutal to criminals. He’s a man suffering from guilt and anger at the same time.

And then there’s the new recruit Asst. Detective Miyagi Asuka (Anne). She’s the complete opposite of Date. She never hides anything.  She’s the typical rookie,  idealistic and unyielding. Completing the trio is the happy-go-lucky Kudo Kenji (Nishikido Ryo). Though he appears laid-back, he seems to understand how things really work. He also wants justice, but he knows how to deal with reality. You can say, he’s the hybrid of the idealistic Miyagi and two-faced Date.

First Impression: Hammer Session

With all the buzz and positive reviews about “Hammer Session”, I was curious to watch and see for myself  if the hypes are true.

Here’s an article from Tokyograph:

Namoshiro Tanahashi’s manga series “Hammer Session!” is being turned into a live-action drama, starring Mocomichi Hayami (25) and Mirai Shida (17). TBS will air the series next season.

The popular comic was originally serialized from 2006 to 2009. In the drama version, Hayami plays a genius swindler who escapes from a prison transport vehicle and assumes a new identity as a high school teacher. He conducts his classes in an extreme style known as “hammer session,” forcing his students to become stronger.

Shida plays one of the students. Although she was celebrating her birthday at the show’s press event on Monday, her fellow cast members surprised her by throwing her into the swimming pool.

The rest of the cast includes Jingi Irie (17), Manami Higa (23), Kaoru Sugita (45), Naomasa Musaka (56), and Fumiyo Kohinata (56). The series will premiere this July in TBS’s Saturday 7:56pm time slot.

For starters, this drama almost has the same plot as Gokusen. Well, that’s as far as reforming delinquent students is concerned. If you’ll ask me if it’s a good thing, I’ll definitely answer a booming YES! As I’ve said over and over again, I love Gokusen. Ow, least I forget, Hayami was also in the Gokusen series! Ahh, the good old days.

Yankumi will always be my favorite jdrama sensei, but I can’t deny that  Otawa No. 4’s character has it’s own special appeal. Well, he’s got this admirable wits. And I can’t believe I’ll be saying this, but he takes swindling into the next level. I mean, it’s not everyday that a teacher uses some swindler’s tricks to teach his students, right? No doubt, I liked the concept.

One more reason for me to watch this jdrama is the casting.  I’ve always had high expectations for Mirai Shida-san. I’ve seen her do lots of stuffs, from a 14 year old mother to Shokojo Seira. By that, I know she’s good. And she already paired-up with almost all cute bishies! Muira Haruma, Yamada Ryosuke, Kanata Hongo, Hayashi Kento. This girl is quite lucky!

As for Mochomichi Hayami, well, he’s definitely not  just your typical eye-candy. He already improved a lot! Hope he’ll get many more projects in the future.

It’s too early to tell if it’s good. But if you loved Gokusen and other school dramas, it’s a Go-Go. If not, then it’s a simple No-No. If only they’ll add more humour, then it’ll definitely be a complete package. 🙂

First Impression: Mioka

Are you a looking for a serious tear-jerker this summer? Then watch Mioka. Haha! My introductory paragraph sure sounds like a product endorsement, ne?

But seriously guys, have you heard of Mioka? I came across with this drama today and decided to give it a try. I love romantic-comedies and it’ll forever be on top of my preference list, but then I thought: what’s the harm in crying your heart out in a tragic romance, right? Haha!

To be honest, I seldom watch heavy melodramas. Not that I don’t want to, but the genre seems to pose danger to my health. Haha! Though it may sound lame, but it’s true. Take for instance the time when I watched 1 Litre of Tears, I cried hysterically for two full hours and it triggered my asthma. And then when I watched Koizora, I suffered from severe hyperventilation. Now, you get the picture?

Looking back, those were funny moments. You see, I get too engrossed with the storyline that, most of the time, I become too emotionally attached. If you’ll ask me, it’s totally fine but my mom got traumatized afterwards and banned me from heartrending stuffs. But it didn’t stop me though. Once in a while, I find time to sneakily watch. Shhh!

So, here’s the synopsis from drama-wiki (

One day, Taichi (Kento Hayashi), an ordinary university student meets Mioka (Yuriko Yoshitaka), a girl who is like a storm. Taichi finds himself drawn to Mioka, who lives freely as she wishes without holding back, and they eventually fall in love. However, Mioka tells Taichi of a shocking truth. She has an incurable brain disease, with no medicine or treatment that can help her. With the progressing disease, the loss of control over her own body, the precious memories slowly fading away, the fear of losing herself, the limited time she has left… Even with such a cruel fate, Mioka lives her life to the fullest extent till the end. Taichi, wholeheartedly loving her, and decides to become the witness of her very existence in this world.

To be honest, the plot reminds me of too many jdramas already. Just by reading, I somehow feel that it’ll be a super sad ending. For sure, even if I cry buckets of tears, the lead will die. And to some extent, that’s not my idea of entertainment. It gets depressing everytime, really!

I’ve been trying to watch the first episode, but sadly the only subbed video I put my hands on is extremely choppy. Or my pc’s internet connection runs too slow. Either way, I haven’t finished watching the whole thing.

All in all, I find the storyline a cliché. I even feel that some dialogues were already used in other dramas. Sorry. But still, I have high hopes. If they add some spices to this over explored genre, then this jdrama will be worth the watch. But if not…. then it’ll truly be a tragedy. If you’ll ask me if I’ll keep track? There’s an 80% chance. Why??? I’m totally cheering for Kento. Yepee.

Hope they pull this through!

Hotaru no Hikari Season 2: Episode 1

Ahh! I’ve been sluggish. Gomen nasai. I know I’ve promised before that I’ll be having a recap for Hotaru no Hikari Season 2, but sad to say, Summer’s Desire is eating all my time. So, just to  give this jdrama enough credits and love, I’ve decided to compile the highlights and funny parts.

Just a thought

Given the fact that Season 1 already set the bar high for the drama, I can definitely say that I’m still hanging in a balance. I still find Hotaru no Hikari refreshingly funny and relaxing. And it gets funnier as Seno-san adds his quirky  character, and not to mention, his incredibly skimpy pants. There’s also a mystery to be solved… Does Buchou already has a daughter?

Hmmm… I don’t know really. For sure, the mystery woman is definitely not Buchou’s wife in the first season. Who could she be? Will Seno-san fall for our Hotaru? Will Hotaru finally graduate from being the ultimate himono onna? Can Buchou transform Hotaru? What will happen to our adorable couple? Guess, we just have to wait and find out ourselves.

Episode 1

Amemiya Hotaru is back after three years working abroad. You think she changed? Nope! She’s still the same naive and innocent himono onna (dried up woman) who loves to roll over the floor and drink canned beer. However, I think she’s the only one who didn’t change. There were new office mates: the overly laid-back temporary worker Seno-san, the uncaring Sakuragi-san and others. Even Buchou seems to have moved on. And as for the shocking news ever: Yamada-neesan married Futatsugi-san. Heh?

First day at work: Hotaru meets Seno, who seems to associate her with a dokyunko (seal). Seno-san plays a prank over Hotaru and says that dokyunko is a famous band. Poor little Hotaru, however, has no idea what a dokyunko is and gamely sings the dyokyunko song.

Buchou caught the wacky duo in action.

At the office, Buchou and Hotaru acts af if they’re not on lovey-dovey mode. But at home…they sure are!

Buchou: Three years ago… You left Japan for a renovation project in Hong Kong. When I was in Narita Airport you were in tears in front of me. You were sobbing hysterically and were suspected to be an illegal immigrant. And you almost face deportation. Do you remember?
Hotaru: That is…me.
Buchou: You were crying but you were forcing yourself to smile. On that day, you remember what you said?
Hotaru: I’m not an illegal immigrant!!!
Buchou: I wasn’t talking about those!
Hotaru: Well…
Buchou: Viva…long distance love.

And the couple cheers on Viva Long Distance Love!

Buchou and Hotaru: From today onwards, we will be separated into Tokyo and Hong Kong. But we won’t lose and we won’t cry, won’t forget each other. Viva Long Distance Love!

And the comic banter turns serious as Buchou expresses his sentiments about Hotaru’s insensible  stance to their relationship. He then frankly admits that after 3 years, he already changed and so must Hotaru.  His statement made Hotaru ponder on things. And cutting their  heart-to-heart talk is a mysterious call.

Hotaru tries to poke her nose on Buchou’s mystery caller. But since it’s Hotaru, she’ll be doing it like this…

At work, Hotaru’s office mates seems to be too apathetic in doing their job and so she tries to “inspire” them a little bit. But still, it proves no use. She then learns that Buchou met up with a beautiful, classy woman at a bar yesternight. I thought that she’ll be uncomfortable with the news but… She’s much too concerned with other matters…

Buchou’s reaction after hearing what’s troubling Hotaru.

Hotaru: I’ve been trying to make sense of this for a while…
Buchou: What?
Hotaru: My balance.
Buchou: What about it?
Hotaru: My savings account… something about it….
Buchou: Let me see that…You have 47 yen.
Hotaru: Yes.
Buchou: 47 yen!!!
Hotaru: What does it mean?
Buchou: How do you figure? You’ve been in charge of a HongKong project team for three years and what you have is 47 yen balance? How is that possible?!

Then phone call. Buchuo is set to go out for the night yet again.

Hotaru: You’re leaving me and my 47 yen?
Buchou: Even if we talk about our future, we can do nothing with just 47 yen.
Hotaru: Can we do something, if I had 470 billion yen?
Buchou: When you have 470 billion yen, we’ll talk about what to do then.
Hotaru: Heh!

When Buchou went out, Hotaru had a night out on her own: Bonding time with Sakuragi-san and Seno-san. However, Sakuragi-san left early and so Seno-san endures the sole responsibility of  taking care of a drunk Hotaru.While Hotaru is having the time of her life, Buchou is anxiously waiting for her, all dressed up with Hotaru’s pride-shattering souvenir costume.

So sad…but still funny :p

Waking next to a guy makes Hotaru as excited as a little girl with a new-found toy. Hehehe.Silly girl! Good thing that she comes to her senses and realizes the folly of her actions. Seno-san, on the other hand, doesn’t mind whatsoever. And the two reports hurriedly to the office.

There seems to be a problem with Sakuragi-san’s work though. And as her “Senpai”, Hotaru takes action. In the end, Hotaru saves the day. But! She’s still not off the hook. She has yet to face Buchou and the issue of her not going home.

Seno-san, the ever uncaring dude, hands-in something that Hotaru left the other night: Her stockings!

Hotaru is such a terrible liar.

Hotaru: Did you see?
Buchou: I saw.
Hotaru: You saw?
Buchou: I saw!
Hotaru: It may look like stockings but…This is actually a hat! It fit perfectly and it is a wonderful hat for summer!

Hotaru’s shocked expression when Buchou proposed.

Hotaru: I’m very happy that I tried my best during these past three years. I was very happy. Happy and I just wanted to share it with you. Trying my best is thanks to you. I thought that because you are waiting for me, so… Thank you very much for these past three years. Your existence supported me through these three years. Thank you very much. From now on I will try to do my best alone.
Buchou: With that 47 yen?
Hotaru: I have to rent an apartment.
Buchou: With that 47 yen?!
Hotaru: As a fabulous OL (office lady), from now on, I will become a fabulous woman both in career and personal life.
Buchou: Impossible! Until you die it’s impossible.
Hotaru: Shut up. I’m making my commitment, please don’t bother me.
Buchou: What do you mean by “Fabulous OL?” Does a “Fabulous OL” wears stockings on her head and insists that it’s a hat? Also, does a “Fabulous OL” forget her used stocking in the night out like an idiot? And in the company elevator, does a “Fabulous OL mess around dokyunko, dokyunko meow meow.
Hotaru: Buchou are you feeling jealous?
Buchou: And not only that you were told that “You look alike dokyunko”.
Hotaru: You were jealous, weren’t you?
Buchou: Arahiyama’s dokyunko is actually the dokyunko that is in Arashiyama Aquarium.
Hotaru: Aquarium?
Buchou: Dokyunko is a seal (Sea Lion).
Hotaru: Then dokyunko dokyunko?
Buchou: From performance with the seals. Of course, if you don’t come back to Japan for three years, you’ll be left out in the seal information.
Hotaru: Then Seno-san spent the night with a woman who looks like a seal?
Buchou: It must be a water accident for him. Well, as for you, you must have been really happy to wake up next to a guy.
Hotaru: Why do you know that?
Buchou: I told you. I’m different from those times. During these 3 year you weren’t here, I was thinking about you deeply. And now that you’re back, let’s get married. From now on, the two of us are a married couple. You’ll always be my woman.

And then, Hotaru faints. Emotional overload!!!

First Impressions: Yankee-kun to Megane-chan

Okay, just to let everybody know, I decided to keep track of this jdorama simply because of Kanata Hongo.  I’ve been waiting for his small-screen comeback like forever! And at last, the most anticipated news had arrived…All Hail Yankee-kun to Megane-Chan!

I’m not a major fan of the leads and to be frank, I have zero-knowledge of the manga. Thus, I don’t have any expectations or pre-empts, whatsoever. It’s a rather good thing for me coz I don’t have to deal with any  feelings of dissatisfaction or disappointments, if ever there is, later.  Even if KH doesn’t play the more important male protagonist , I’m at ease to see my favorite bishounen in action. Good to see yah again Kanata-kun!

See?! He’s just too adorable as Izumi Gaku, isn’t he? 😀

I’m not berating Hiroki Nariyama or anything. In fact, I adored his acting skills in Orange Days and in my all-time favorite Gokusen 1. But when I first learned that he’ll be a “high school” delinquent in the drama, I somehow doubt if he’ll pull the strings together. You can’t blame me though, I’ve watched him portray much older roles before. After ep. 1, I can say that he did give Daichi Shinigawa‘s character some justice. I dunno if it’s because of his sharp and strong facial features or because of his past acting experience, but somehow he hits it bullseye. 🙂

As for Riisa Naka (Hana Adachi), I don’t really have much to say about her. Just to be honest, I haven’t seen any of her dramas before or if ever I’ve seen one, I haven’t noticed her. Sumimasen Riisa-chan. Anyways, watching her in the drama just makes me laugh out loud. She upgraded the words “persistently annoying person ” to a way higher level. She screams, she crawls,  she stares… Okay, in short, she pretty much does everything  that are totally unexpected for a girl.

Well, I’m looking forward- not the exaggerated and desperate anticipation but more of the hopeful and optimistic type– to this drama. It’s too early to give a comment but still I’m hoping for the best. So far, so good.I dunno if there’s gonna be some romance, but I can tell that there’s chemistry. Before I forget, the humour is two-thumbs up superb!

The jdorama kinda resemble Gokusen in a way or two. And it’s a plus factor for me, since I love school-comedies and stuffs. First, it centers around the rather quirky life of a misjudged  rumble-rousing juvenile delinquent. Second, it has a meddling, unwavering, funny and at the same time weird female lead. Third, it has a lot of over-the-top  fighting scenes. Fourth, the female lead has a not-so-secret past. I can go on and on but I’m going to cut the list short and ends it here.

Who knows, maybe I’ll make an episode recap or at least a summary of it? I’m still on Episode 1 though that means I have so much of catching up.

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