You know what’s funny? I did not finish Midnight Diner, the first movie. I think it is still on my Netflix queue. I found it plain Jane and that’s why I didn’t finish it immediately. No worries, one day I will. But how was I able to finish Diner 2? The answer is simple. I was trapped on the plane and I have no choice but to finish it.
Another WOWOW production drama! I am a fan! They are master of producing crime dramas, in my opinion. I have yet to be disappointed so far. And Rakuen is the latest installment. I just can’t help but add it to my long last currently watching list! Seriously, how do I make rooms for these dramas? Thankfully, this drama is only 6 episodes long. But 6 episodes feels longer! As usual, the network airs it once a week. I don’t know why they do this. Why can’t they be like the Chinese network and air it daily? I could have been done by now!
Anywho, this drama requires your mental attention. Every single episode gives you clues. And you are not able to tie it as the writer works the story like a maze. Bel and I tried so hard to piece the puzzle together. You would, too. It is so amazing how this writer introduces the show to us. An old couple home was caught on fire. This is common, right? You immediately sympathize with them. Then, they drop the bomb right away! “I killed my daughter 15 years ago and she is buried underneath the house. Please dig her out.” Oh gawd, what the…?
The story then became very fragmented. We then met Shigeko who works in a small publishing company. She used to be famous for writing her prediction in a serial case news. But she quit when her prediction turned out wrong and caused death in the victim’s sister. Shigeko is now trying to investigate why Hajime killed his daughter, why Toshiko’s son was able to draw another person’s memories, and why Harumi hid Hajime away from his other daughter. So many questions to answer. All from the death of one daughter.
The pacing of this drama is slow. If you are impatient, this drama is not for you. There is a lot of layers in Rakuen and I’m not sure the next three episodes could do the justice. I hope the ending is not rushed. I really want to know the relationship of all the characters and what exactly we will get at the end of it. I know, everything sounds so vague coz really I am still searching the tangent as well! Rakuen is a mysterious, psychological crime drama that keeps you wondering what the heck is it and yet you can’t and won’t quit! Good luck if you wish to watch it coz really, you need luck!
I was on my way to the Philippines when I first met Sato Takeru. No, not in person *sticks her tongue out*. That’s just silly although it would have been nice had he accompany me on that beluga plane! Hehehe it was A-380 but I prefer calling that mumbo jumbo jet a beluga. Doesn’t it looks like one? Anywho, I saw Rurouni Kenshin for the first time and it was love at first sight! Throughout my flight from LA to Seoul, I spent 85% of my time watching this movie over and over again. Well, who needs sleep anyway! Yeap, it was such a mind blowing movie and I was totally moved by this actor! *grins*
Later on, I was introduced to his semi bio special drama/documentary, Saigo no Kizuna: Okinawa Hikisakareta Kyodai, where he acted as a WWII soldier from Okinawa. It was a life change game for me again. The movie itself touched the very sensitive issue to me and my husband (It’s a long story!) but Sato again stole my heart. His acting was so believable. I was moved by him. My god, how can a young actor be this incredible? And now, I’m watching him again as Tokuzo Akiyama. *claps* Sato Takeru really takes himself very serious. His career move from some silly characters he have had in his early acting career to a very mature and progressive roles, he has elevated himself to almost front line of respective actors in Japan. Good job, Sato! I look forward for his next movies and dramas.
Bel told me Tenno No Ryoriban is waiting for me. Without any hesitation, I started this drama with zero expectation. As always. *wink* The first episode left me annoyed. Tokuzo is such a spoiled brat. As the youngest in the family, he really took advantage of his parents and position in the family. Tokuzo moved on quickly with his life. He constantly looking for the most suitable career for himself and he ends up quitting after 3 months. Nothing really sticks with him, unfortunately. Worried that their son will continue humiliating the family even further, they decided to marry him off! Yeah, I know what you’re thinking too. Bad idea! Would marriage calms and settles Tokuzo down? His family married him off to Toshiko. Tokuzo mistaken Toshiko for someone else and was disappointed with the chosen wife. Toshiko though fell in love with him and wanted this marriage to work out great. Toshiko’s family has high hope on Tokuzo as well, hoping that he would take over the family businesses since they have no son to inherit. He was great in the beginning. He was assigned a routine and did it with no hesitations. Well, I guess he had no choice. Sadly, one day, Tokuzo sidetracked again. On one of the deliveries he was assigned to, he met up with a French-trained chef. Tokuzo was given a taste and he fell for the art of cooking immediately. From then on, he decided that he wanted to be a chef. But his newfound dream really destroyed his marriage with Toshiko. Would this marriage last? And would Tokuzo successfully be a chef or just another… useless dream of his?
This currently airing 11-episode drama (8 episodes aired so far) is really, really fabulous. Never in my lifetime that I actually took time and investigated the real Tokuzo Akiyama. Yeap, I did. And this drama shows great development of Tokuzo’s character. You can watch how childish he was in the beginning and how he became mature and responsible as he aged. This is truly a great drama to watch. I love it! Everyone should watch it!