The 10th Tokyo Drama Awards, part of the International Drama Festival in TOKYO, was held on October 26, 2017. Some of the best Japanese dramas were judged based on their quality and marketability in order to promote this aspect of Japanese culture on a global basis. Check out the 2016 winners too!
Let's take a look at the winners!
The Full-Time Wife Escapist Best Series Drama
Protagonist Mikuri Moriyama is an unattached young woman with a graduate degree. Her prospects should be rosy. But when no offers of employment come her way, she's forced into taking on temp work and confronting "the painful realization that nobody needs her." That's when Mikuri with the help of a father (who can't stand to see her jobless）lands a job as a professional homemaker for a company man, a straitlaced, unexciting bachelor named Hiramasa Tsuzaki. Mikuri's perfectionist work ethic wins over Tsuzaki's complete trust, but unfortunate circumstances result in the loss of this job, too. Hemmed in and feeling anxious about the future, Mikuri makes Tsuzaki a strange offer. "Would you consider employing me through marriage?" Tsuzaki agrees, and a nuptial agreement is signed, making the two legally betrothed in a somewhat falsified life as husband/employer and wife/employee.
This was a very popular 2016 dorama on MDL as well. With an 8.4 rating, many users have praised it for its sweet and building romance, deep characters, and direction. If it sounds like your cup of tea, check it out!
Excellence Awards for Drama Series
Sanada Maru: Written by notable Japanese playwright and film director, Koki Mitani, the historical drama series dynamically and sometimes humorously portrays the life of the last great commander in Japan's Warring States period, Sanada Nobushige, well-known as Yukimura, and his clan, with a focus on the love of family.
Your Home is My Business - Single, beautiful, and just slightly outlandish in her fashion sense, Machi is a real-estate saleswoman who is known for being able to close the deal no matter who the client is, even if she never smiles while doing so. She sticks her nose even in the private issues of her clients, and uses a wide range of tactics to solve their problems, just so she can sell the house
Quartet: Four people's paths cross one winter by chance: two women and two men in their 30s, all whose dreams have gone sadly unfulfilled. Instead of swelling toward the peak of their lives, their lives all seem headed gently downhill. Despite being total strangers, they decide to share a house together in the wooded resort area of a Karuizawa. But "chance" also hides some pretty big secrets in this brand new adult-sized drama that will have you laughing at odd chemistry, biting your nails at unexpected turns, and even alarmed by some stark truths of the human condition.
Byplayers: The story is staged at a sharehouse where six middle aged men are forced to live together. This is a comedy with witty banter and amazing cast!
CRISIS: Special Security Squad: Based on award-winning writer Kazuki Kaneshiro's story of the same title, the drama focuses on Inami and Tamaru, two members of a secret team of specialists working directly under the jurisdiction of the Security Bureau of the National Police Agency.
In an age when the nation is under the threat of unimaginable crimes, everyone is their enemy: terrorists plotting to assassinate politicians, new religious movements, military spies, drug cartels, and sometimes even politicians who ought to be protecting the citizens.
In the face of national crises where reckless evil and political ambitions intertwine, these extraordinary men rise up!
Hagoku Best Drama Special
"Break Out", an award winning (Yomiuri Prize for Literature) masterpiece by Akira Yoshimura, is dramatized for the first time in 32 years, with script written by Shunsaku Ikebata and directed by Yoshihiro Fukagawa. Featuring Beat Takeshi, a talented comedian as well as a filmmaker, it depicts a thrilling fight between a perfect jail keeper called "Prison Guardian God" and the worst jail breaker in the history of crime.
This drama won the 2017 Grand Prix for the Best Drama Special and it is definitely worth checking out - an amazing cost plus gripping story-line will hold you at the edge of your seat!
Excellence Awards for Drama Specials
Cold Case file05 Lockheed Scandal - The program aims to review various incidents which had great impact over the society, to learn lessons for the future, and here is the 5th of the series.
40 years have passed since Lockheed Payoff Scandal, the biggest bribery scandal after the World War the Second. The program tries to reveal the hidden facts, what lies behind the incident?
Zenigata Keibu - is the detective who stars in the hit manga and anime "Lupin III." His passionate pursuit of the elusive thief Lupin III has earned him the love of men, women, young, and old, making him a nationally-acclaimed character in Japan. But how many people really know the true Zenigata? Most are probably thinking," What a clumsy detective who always lets Lupin III escape!" Not true at all. Inspector Zenigata is a serious champion of justice whose compassion for others is unmatched. He's a brilliant detective who doesn't give up until he catches the bad guys. This drama showcases the legendary Inspector Zenigata as he solves one complex case after another.
A Man's Fifth Year since the 3.11 Earthquake/Tsunami - is an original script written by the most prominent contemporary Japanese scriptwriter, Taichi Yamada. The drama depicts an unfathomable sense of loss of a survivor of the Great East Japan Earthquake. The Japanese seem to have overcome the extraordinary disaster and their lives seem to be back to normal. But for those who have actually experienced the tsunami and the nuclear accidents, their void of loss is still very much there. A worldclass actor Ken Watanabe plays the leading role of a veterinarian who had lost his most beloved daughter in the disaster, and how he finally finds the light in the dark. It is a challenge to portray the realities of the victims in a heart-warming drama that is possible only after half a decade of time.
The Poetry Reader - Mamoru Saionji is bordering on depression, his motivation low; his wife walked out on him and he loses successive jobs. One day his ex-wife calls him out of the blue and tells him about "The 24- Hour Library". Suffering from insomnia, Mamoru finds refuge at the library, night after night. There, librarian Hitomi Sawada introduces a job as a poetry reader to him. His employer is the otherworldly old lady Reiko Ogasawara, who enjoys soothing moments as Mamoru reads Chuya Nakahara's works to her. Through the harsh encouragement of Ogasawara's housekeeper Ms. Hayakawa, Chuya-loving fisherman Mr. Kurata, and his ex-wife's sister Midori, cheer slowly returns to Mamoru. One day, at the library, Mamoru stumbles across a familiar-looking diary. Opening it, he finds it belonged to his ex-wife. After reading her ruminations, the door in his heart opens, and his emotions begin to flow.
Under the same sky - Eri Miyazato was reporting a huge tug of war in Naha city on television. When the fight ends, people run to get ropes which is believed to bring luck. In the crowd, there were Vietnamese students Hai and Quang. Quang was knocked down by Eri when he tried to snatch the rope and the happening were all broadcasted. After this accident, Eri was interested in the tragic history of war in Okinawa and Vietnam. When Eri started covering a Vietnamese student in Okinawa, she met Hai again. Hai didn't seem to like her, but they are getting closer and closer.
Excellence Awards for Satellite Dramas
Midnight Diner: Tokyo Stories: A small eatery called Meshiya -- also referred to as the Midnight Diner -- resides in the back alley of a bustling district. Despite the eatery's unusual hours, 12 a.m. to 7 a.m., a menagerie of customers flock to the establishment each night for a bite to eat and to visit with the proprietor, known as the Master. While there is a menu, which includes pork miso soup set, sake, beer and shochu, the Master makes whatever his customers request. As patrons bond with the Master, they find nourishment for their bellies and their souls.
Yowamushi Pedal - Based on highly popular Japanese manga, 15 million copies sold to date, "Yowamushi Pedal" is a live action drama of battle between high school road race cycling teams aiming for the top. Sakamichi, an Akihabara loving anime geek, joins an elite high school road race team Sohoku by accident where he discovers his true talent for hill climbing. Through his new friendship and peer rivalry, Sakamichi finds purpose and emerges himself into cycling to win a seat at the Sohoku High School A team.
Special Awards for Drama Series
Seirei no Moribito II - Four years later, in Season2, Chagum officially takes his place as heir to the throne of Shin-Yogo while Balsa becomes a wanted fugitive because of her failed assassination attempt. Balsa hides in the Kingdom of Rota, and while working as a bodyguard she one day saves a girl, Asla, from slavery. Indwelling within Asla is Taluhamaya, a deity of destruction worshipped by her tribe. When Asla becomes angry and summons the deity, the usual aftermath is only mercilessly destroyed dead bodies. Trying to capture and kill Asla are Shihana and Sufahl, a shaman pair from the Kingdom of Rota, who consider Asla a threat. Once again Balsa's journey for survival begins, going all out to protect Asla.
Cold Case - follows similar plot lines to the original US series, taking place in Yokohama rather than Philadelphia and starring Yoh Yoshida, in the role of Lily Rush, acted by Kathryn Morris in the original series.
Best Leading Actor/Actress
Best Supporting Actor/Actress
Best Screenwriter & Best Director
Best Theme Song
Credits and synopsis taken from: j-ba.or.jp