Inspired by Jeana Vs City: Drama Opinions we decided to tackle some Japanese titles where our opinions may differ. HA! There is no May about it but I promise you we are still friends. :)
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!
OAL's Rating: 3.5/10
And you thought I rated everything an 8. NOPE. I just don't talk about the bottom feeders. I love Matsuda Shota, for whom I watched this title, but it was a complete fail for me. A parody on locked room mysteries, which I LOATHE, should have been right up my alley. Instead, the repetitive formula (which is a parody in and of itself) just got tiresome and droll. The humour was lost on me and I only completed it because I have the "Never Drop " disease.
AishwaryaMV's Rating: 8/10
Yes! I would give this an 8! Well, why not? There's comedy, mystery, a cute eccentric detective, and a slight hint of romance in the end! That's most of the things required in a detective J-drama for me. I kind of liked the imaginative room where the three discuss stuff. Each episode had a mystery to solve which put my brain cells to work. Of course, the humour was sometimes too exaggerated and it felt like they tried too hard to make the audience laugh and the mysteries were not too complicated. This takes some fun out of it. Overall, it's good to watch once!
OAL's Rating: 8.5/10
In my mad dash to cram in 2018 titles at the end of 2018, this one caught my eye and looked fun. This is the rare occasion I did not pick something based on who was acting in it but by the screencaps in the feeds and the synopsis. Yes, it is cheesy, yes it is about gang violence but oh my goodness it is funny if you like this kind of humour. Especially the Lady Gang leader trying to be cute in front of Kentaro's character. Then again I love anime, and this felt very much like one.
AishwaryaMV's Rating: Dropped
I know people go like, "WHATTTT? YOU DROPPED THIS ONE???". Don't get me wrong, I have no personal grudges or anything. I watched the first episode. I really don't get the idea of being a delinquent and what's with the wacky hairstyles. I mean can't you be one even if you look normal? All the delinquents in Gokusen looked pretty normal though. I'm sorry the fight scenes are too much for me to handle. So, I guess that's that!
OAL's Rating: 8.5/10
I almost didn't choose this one because it's hard to get across why I love this so much. If you are a Johnny's fan at all this drama tackles the question of what it is like to be married to a Johnny's Idol. (For those that don't know JE Talent are not allowed to have public relationships and must appear single at all times to sell the dream. If rules are not followed they get unceremoniously fired, the most famous case being Akanishi Jin who married Kuroki Meisa w/o permission from Jimusho and was then dropped from KAT-TUN and forced to pay a fee to the company for the next 9 years.) My favourite line from this is "Let me carry half your burden" a small sentiment that speaks volumes to me. To offer to help shoulder the bad and not just the good. This had me in tears by the last 2 episodes and broke my heart 10 times over because I would have made the same decisions.
AishwaryaMV's Rating: Dropped
Well, I just can't handle all the drama, the pain, the crying, the characters finally realizing their true love at the last moment and running towards each other. I know being a JE idol is tough, it's hard work. Romantic affairs are prohibited. Having social media accounts is prohibited. Seriously, why?? They had a website where the idols would blog about their lives and subscribers could view it in English. They discontinued their services to all languages except Japanese. Dropped due to too much family stuff and drama.
OAL's Rating: 7/10
A story about a mama's boy being molly-coddled by his single parent. Sort of. He joins the toughest school around (I can't remember the reason) and his mom gets a job in the cafeteria to watch over him (or maybe its the other way around and he is watching over her). Either way, the pampered boy joins gang school. Unlike reality where he would have been splatted in a corner somewhere and forgotten, he fights his way up the ranks with his "Mama's Boy" power. The unique animations when they have conflict is what makes this special and the ending, as a parent, rang so true. The co-dependancy of single parent and child are shown here with all the good and the bad. A good lesson in psychology.
AishwaryaMV's Rating: 10/10
Yeah, Yamada Ryosuke is my all-time bias but that is not the only reason why I gave this a 10. I kind of understood the pain mothers go through to raise their kids and the things they expect from us. It also taught me about many things such as being strong, unconditional love, sacrifices and so on. I liked the concept of assigning animals to people where Yamada is a koala, and the others are a kangaroo, elephant, cheetah, snake, etc. It really shows true friends are always there for you. It also speaks letting go of the people you love is also important. So a 10!
OALs Rating: 10/10
I can hear you all now "Oh you just love Yamapi!" Well, I do but no that is not the only reason I think this is the perfect drama. I recently sat down my super nerdy friends (one is a professor at the local college and has a doctorate in Marine Biology, and his wife whom has appeared on Jeopardy!) and had them watch this with me to test my bias. Both had read the novel as did my husband who also joined us. As an actor to go from deep on the spectrum to super genius and back is difficult. If you have someone in your life that is defined as "on the spectrum", you will recognize mannerisms immediately. Everyone on the cast played their roles effectively and brought this classic American novel to life with a Japanese twist. It made us feel every emotion you were supposed to, there were no unnecessary characters. My friends thanked me when it was finished and they do not watch Asian dramas.
AishwaryaMV's Rating: 6.5/10
The acting, cast, story were excellent. Yamapi did a very good job with his life like acting. I'm really impressed with him. Algernon was cute AF! But seriously, I really can't cope up with the amount of sadness and tears it gave me. Cried buckets out. Melodrama is definitely not my cup of tea, neither is the bittersweet ending for me.
After reading both commentaries it seems we are on opposite sides of what we ask for in of a drama, Does this mean we are opposing in every drama? No. Does it mean either opinion is invalid? No. Everybody takes different things from each title they watch. Thank you for reading! Oh, and personally I (OAL) like this type of article, so if ever you wanna challenge my opinion on a few titles in article form, just drop me a message.
Both writers of this article are part of the MDL Writer's Circle on Slack if interested ask us for an invite!