Friday, April 25, 2014

2 New Japanese Crime Dramas Make an Impact

For the most part I am not a huge follower of Japanese dramas.  That is not to say that I don't like the occasional Jdrama (especially watched a lot back when I first started watching Asian television) but the lack of good romance tends to keep me away from the majority of them.  I have found that most are very focused on social structure and one's impact or part of the whole, which is fine every now and then but not something I want to watch every day.  So it came as a great surprise that I not only found one, but two great new dramas that hale from Japan.  Not only that but both are crime dramas with pretty much no romance at all.  However, both have amazing actors as the leading men and have an interesting hook that not only hooked me, but inspired me to write a special blog post about them.

Detective Ango Ishikawa (Shun Oguri - Rich Man Poor Women, Tokyo Dogs) is investigating the murder of a cop when he is shot in the head by the suspect.  He dies, but comes back on the surgery table.  Living with the bullet still inserted in his head, he is shocked to find out that he can now commune with ghosts of the murder victims.

Why You Should Watch This:
 is an amazing actor and his stoic performance drags you into his world.  The murders are also interesting and I don't feel like the writers are just phoning it in.  In episode 2 when Detective Ishikawa interacted with the ghost of a serial killer, I literally got shivers.  This is perfect for those of you who like a good character driven drama.

-Bitter Blood/Partners in Blood-
Natsuki Sahara (Takeru Sato - Bloody Sunday) is a rookie detective assigned to the violent crimes division.  Unfortunately for him he is now partnered up with his deadbeat dad, Akimura Shimao (Atsuro Watabe) who had deserted the family thirteen years earlier.  At first glance, they are complete opposites.  One is flashy and a ladies man, while the son is sensitive and emotional.  They must not only learn how to work together as partners, but relearn how to be a family. 

Why You Should Watch This:
The witty fast talking charm of both characters is a HUGE draw.  I fell in love with both of them within the first fifteen minutes and even watched the first episode a second time (and enjoyed it just as much).  I like that both father and son are basically good people who have overcome each others flaws and begin to understand where the other is coming from.  The drama goes at a fast pace and remains interesting as you see individual cases solved, while a revenge driven threat remains in the background of each episode just waiting to attack.  Even if cop shows are not your thing, I would still suggest you give this one a chance.  It truly is a diamond in the rough.

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1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on these. Oguri Shun is one of my favorite Japanese actors, and the story line sounds like something I'd enjoy. Think I'll check these two out.


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