The J-drama summer season is just around the corner. This summer there are several dramas based on mangas or novels, and also a school drama that's based on a true story. Let’s take a peek at what’s on offer this year!
Kami no Shita wo Motsu Otoko (Man Who Has God's Tongue)
Start: July 8 on TBS
Our three heroes and heroines meet by chance and then travel around the country in a shabby car. They stay at different hot springs as they search for the enigmatic hot spring geisha Miyabi. This is a comical mystery that promises to make you laugh.
Toki wo Kakeru Shoujo (The Girl Who Leapt Through Time)
Drama, Romance, School, Sci-Fi, Youth
Start: July 9 on NTV
The popular 1967 novel The Girl Who Leapt Through Time is getting yet another adaptation to follow the numerous movies and dramas that have already been based on it. It’s about Yoshiyama (Kuroshima) who after smelling lavender in her school’s science lab gains the ability to leap through time. She meets a man from the future (Kikuchi) and falls in love with him.
(Based on a novel)
Sukina Hito ga Iru Koto (There’s Someone I Like)
Start: July 11 on Fuji TV
How does speding the summer sharing a seaside house with three handsome brothers sound like? A dream? Or the perfect summer rom-com setup? For our lucky heroin Misaki (Kiritani) it’s a new work opportunity. After she suddenly gets fired from her previous job, she gets invited to work and live at the seaside restaurant owned by her first love (Miura) and his brothers (Yamazaki, Nomura).
Seisei Suru Hodo, Aishiteru (I Love You Most)
Business, Drama, Romance
Start: July 12 on TBS
Kurihara Mia (Takei) loses her engagement ring while at a business trip and a stranger (Takizawa) helps her find it. When Mia returns home she finds out that the stranger was the vice-president of her company. While he’s training in her department she finds herself falling for him.
(Based on a manga)
ON Ijou Hanzai Sousakan Todo Hinako (On: Special Agent Todo Hinako)
Crime, Detective, Investigation, Mystery
Start: July 12 on Fuji TV
No drama season is complete without a crime/investigation drama. In this one we meet rookie detective Hinako and her colleagues. They go to investigate what appears to be a suicide, and they find that the dead man is the suspect of an unsolved murder case. What’s more is that he died in the same way as the person of said murder case. Is this really a suicide?
(Based on a novel)
Ie Uru Onna (Woman Who Sells a House)
Start: July 13 on NTV
The real estate market is fierce as Tokyo prepares for the upcoming Olympics. Enter the real estate genius Sangenya Machi (Kitagawa). She claims that she can sell any house, and in order to do so she will get involved with the customers and their lives.
Detective, Mystery, School
Start: July 13 on TBS
In this season’s horror suspense drama, the people around Minami Yuka (Matsui) die one after another as if by a curse. Around the bodies can be found a large amount of stained 10,000 yen bills. Yuka investigates the mysterious deaths together with detective Wakamoto (Totsugi). Will she be able to escape death?
Hope - Kitai Zero no Shinnyu Shain (Hope: Expectation Zero's New Employee)
Start: July 17 on Fuji TV
Ichinose (Nakajima) dreams of becoming a professional shogi player. His father dies when he is in high school, so in order to help his mother support the family he starts working part-time after graduating instead of going to university. He keeps failing the tests to become a professional shogi player and his mother, worried about him, gets him an internship at a company with the help of an acquaintance. He faces more hardships as an intern and he’ll need to compete with the others in order to be able to stay at the company.
(Remake of Korean drama Incomplete Life)
Soshite, Dare mo Inaku Natta (And Then There Were None)
Start: July 17 on NTV
This suspense drama is about Todo Shinichi who has everything going for him. Until one day, when a man with the same name as him is arrested. After that things start going wrong. Mysterious incidents start happening. Who is doing this and why?
Music, School, Youth
Start: July 17 on TBS
This summer’s drama list wouldn’t be complete without a drama about problem students and their savior. This time our hero is a former saxophone player (Terao) who, despite the opposition of teachers and parents, comes to teach the students music. In the process he rediscovers his own dream and his passion starts to affect the students.
(Based on a true story)
Start: July 22 on TV Asahi
25-years-old chef Ichiki Kurumi (Gouriki) is the first person in 70 years to be hired as a chef at the prime minister’s official residence. However, not everyone at the residence is happy about this new girl joining them.
(Based on a manga)
Crime, Drama, Manga
Start: July 20 on TBS
Mayumi (Mitsumune Kaoru), who works for a publishing company, happens to meet a mysterious man who calls himself Shindo (Nakamura Tomoya). Told by a fortune teller that she will have a “destined meeting”, she pays attention to this. But what awaits her is ironically an encounter with Ushijima Kaoru (Yamada Takayuki), the boss of Cowcow Finance, is known as a legendary black market lender. Cowcow Finance lends money at an illegally high interest rate of 5% every 10 days and relentlessly corners bad debtors.
Drama, Manga, Romance
Start: June 28 on NHK
Kamijo Natsu wavers between being a mother and a
woman. She has devoted her life to her family and her femininity has now vanished. In an attempt to get Natsu to regain a little of her femininity, her husband asks his young subordinate Saiki Ryo to seduce her. However, this is the start of a forbidden romance. Natsu ends up falling in love with this man in spite of her superficial husband.
Start: July 13 on TV Asahi
Called the “graveyard of detectives”, the Twelfth Section is ridiculed as the “banishment room where hardened detectives who cannot be fired are sent”. Amagi Yu’s (Higashiyama Noriyuki) transfer to the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department’s mobile investigation unit; Katagiri Masatoshi’s (Yoshida Kotaro) promotion from former section chief to head the Criminal Affairs Division; Yamashita Takumi’s (Kataoka Ainosuke) move to the mysterious unit called the Future Crime Prediction Centre; and forensic science professor Domoto Juntaro’s (Kitaoji Kinya) appearance lead to changes in the environment.
Comedy, Investigation, Mystery
Start: July 21 on TV Asahi
Muromachi Kyoko, Ichijo Yayoi and Yasaka Misuzu
work at a police station. Kyoko works in the general affairs section, Yayoi in public relations section and Misuzu in the cafeteria as a cook. Even though they are not detectives, they obtain information about cases and gather at the police station cafeteria to analyze the information. They actually find tips that can solve cases.
Start: July 14 on TV Asahi
Umeda Mina (Ono Machiko) is a pianist whose father is a famous conductor. She has set her sights on winning an international piano competition. However, she has faced countless setbacks and this is her last chance at the age of 35. Mina has been married to her husband Shinji (Eguchi Yosuke) for 10 years, but they do not have children for some reason. One day, a filthy boy with an impassive face breaks into their garden. It turns out that he has been abused and he is put in a home. But several days later, he appears in their garden again. Believing that it is fate that brought him to their house twice, Shinji secretly starts to look up on child adoption …
Business, Drama, Family, Romance
Start: July 21 on Fuji TV
Career woman Kira Natsuko was a successful creative director at an advertising agency. However, she got married just before 40, had a child and took maternity leave. Three years later, she returns to the workplace. However, the situation has drastically changed and Takagi Keisuke is now the creative director. The agency is in a slump and there is employee turnover. Natsuko is assigned not to the creative department, but to the sales department against her wishes. She has to face a series of issues that erupt as she struggles to juggle both work and her family. Not wanting to get the help of her mother-in-law, she hires a babysitter. But the babysitter’s presence ends up causing her happy family to drift apart. At the company, her confidence is shattered and she gets frustrated. Before long, she and her husband become estranged and she faces a crisis at home too.
Start: June 4 on Fuji TV
Kurihara Satoko was satisfied with daily life with her husband and son. In fact, the son wasn't their own child, but it didn't matter for them. After they had tried some treatment for sterility for a long term, they once gave up to have a child. However, they came to know about "adoption", and they took Asato as their son. She couldn't imagine the life without Asato, and believed her happiness continued forever.
One day, Satoko got an unexpected call from Katakura Hikari, who insisted that she was Asato's biological mother. Satoko was getting lost in the past because of this call.
Starts: June 26 on Amazon Prime (WHOA!)
Takanashi Chiwa is an office lady who works part-time at a club because she is in debt. One day, she gets into a quarrel with a wealthy and handsome customer who came to the club and is fired. The next day, a depressed Chiwa is summoned by her boss and finds the rude man from the day before down there. His name is Mamiya Hokuto. Hokuto suddenly proposes a contract marriage with Chiaki. Although she is initially resistant to the idea, she has no choice but to accept. The two of them overcome all sorts of troubles and become a real couple.
Start: July 7 on NTV
Shinichi Kakizaki (Hiroshi Mikami) is a lawyer. He violates the Attorneys-at-Law Act and receives a suspension. Afterwards, he has difficulty in regaining people's trust. One day, a wealthy elderly man hires Shinichi Kakizaki for an inheritance. The inheritance work pays a lot of money after remuneration. Shinichi Kakizaki begins to focus on inheritance law.
Set around the Tsukiji Market in Tokyo, Japan.
Yassan (Tsuyoshi Ihara) is homeless and doesn't have any money. He does have an amazing sense of taste and knowledge about food. He delivers information to restaurants and gets paid with food. A young guy, Takao (Tasuku Emoto), admired Tokyo and eventually found an IT job in the city. He now goes with Yassan.
Starts: June 17 on NHK
Shima Yuka works as an OL at a large general trading company. Suddenly, she is transferred from her office to an aquarium that is affiliated with her company. She now works as a keeper at the aquarium and her senior is Kaji. Yuka Shima struggles with her new job and marine animals, but with her bright personality, she is able to grow as an aquarium keeper.
Starts: July 16 on WOWOW
Tajima lives happily with his wife Keiko, their daughter Mika and son Ryota in Tokyo. But one day, Keiko is found to have end-stage cancer and she passes away in a mere three months. Keiko was the sunshine of the family. Now that she is gone, there is a gaping hole in their hearts. Tajima tries to live as if nothing has changed and force smiles, but he soon realises that it is impossible. Then one day, his children suggest that they go to Kibougaoka, the town where Keiko grew up, and make a trip down memory lane. They end up making their way to Keiko's vacant old house. Tajima instinctively asks if they would like to live there. Mika and Ryota agree. And so, the Tajimas begin a new life at Kibougaoka, but...
Starts: July 16 on TV Tokyo
University student Wakamizu Ryota (Emoto Tokio), who is the middle of job hunting, gets caught up in a sudden gang dispute. Ryota’s life is saved by Yanagiba Ryuichi (Namase Katsuhisa), the boss of Yanagiba-gumi, and Ryota for some reason ends up harbouring Yanagiba in his own home. Ignoring Ryota who wants him to leave immediately, Yanagiba uses the leftover food in the fridge and starts to prepare a meal without asking. However, the meal is surprisingly delicious despite the leftovers that did not seem possible to combine. This is the beginning of a bizarre communal life connected by meals for a gangster and a university student.
Koe Koi (Voice Love)
Manga, Romance, School
Starts: July 9 on TV Tokyo
Yoshioka Yuiko begins the first grade in high school. She gets sick with the cold and stays in bed. At that time, she gets a phone call from class president Matsubara. Yuiko becomes flattered by his kind voice on the phone. The next day, she goes to school and meets Matsubara. He is a mysterious boy, wearing a paper bag over his head. Her high school days begin with pounding heart.
Comedy, Drama, School
Starts: July 10 on NHK BS Premium
Tooru Igarashi is a lecturer with charisma, working at a prestigious preparatory school. Recently, he drinks a lot, and his life falls apart. Maki Endo is a student at a part-time high school. Every day, she is exhausted with working multiple jobs to cover her expenses. One day, Tooru and Maki happen to meet each other. Maki wants to graduate high school to get a regular job and asks Tooru to tutor her for her test–retest. After Tooru quit his prep school job, he has lost his pride and passion for teaching. Tooru was also diagnosed to have only a year left to live. He decides to teach Maki and get her into the University of Tokyo.
Which Jdramas are you looking forward to this Summer 2016?