Friday, October 21, 2011

Mitsu no Aji [ep 1]

I’m baffled by the opening scene…my first impression was “oh it’s a sunny day and it’s raining” which looked like they were trying too HARD to make a point out of the scene. I think they wanted to create this ‘steamy’ kind of surrounding, hence the hot sun, but to make it even more dramatic with the symbolic red umbrella, they had to use fake rain. I’m pretty sure it was fake. The following scenes however…kinda turned me off a bit and that’s pretty bad since it’s only the first 2 minutes. The shot of Naoko’s (Eikura Nana) soaked uniform, hence the see-through bra and seriously? The MOLE?! I’m not sure whether the mole is like strategically placed for Naoko to notice or if it’s even real…but I can’t say I like the opening scenes much. And obviously, the red umbrella serves a huge role in this show.

 I actually don't know what to make out of this scene

So, with an opening scene that nearly turned me off right from the beginning, I had doubts whether I’ll actually enjoy this drama at all, because judging from the plot itself, I don’t really like the idea of having a niece falling in love with her uncle. Even if the uncle is not blood related. Something is just odd there. I try to be in Naoko’s shoes and understand why she has fallen in love with her uncle who’s much older. We can see that since childhood, she has looked up to him and rejoiced every single time he comes from Tokyo to the countryside to spend summer with her family. Summer is definitely her favourite season I’m sure. However obviously Masato treats her like his little sister as she calls him Masa-niichan dearly. When Masato tells her that he won’t be able to come as often anymore once he starts his medical studies, Naoko’s heart sank immediately but somehow this serves as a motivation for her to go to Tokyo. How? Study hard and try to get in the same medical school Masato is in. And she gets in! Well, good for her but really?! At this point, I’m thinking Naoko must have some serious uncle complex and being too obsessed with her uncle! It’s like her entire life is going to be devoted just for the sake of this uncle…and that’s messed up, really.

the MOLE!
Then we get to meet Aya (Kanno Miho), Masato’s girlfriend who is in the Pathology department working on research instead of being in Surgery or any other departments that need to interact with patients. She gives the reason that she’s not good dealing with patients. Throughout the episode, she can be seen as a rather straight-forward person, diligent, knows what to prioritize, knows how to deal with the higher ups, but also somewhat cold. However, at the end of the episode, we see a different side of hers, a more caring one, and definitely someone who can comfort patients. And this is when I think Aya is a much more interesting character than the main herself. Aya’s much more complex in comparison. She seems to enjoy the overnight stays at Masato’s place and his company but when it comes to more serious matters, for example marriage, she’s not committed. And what I like about her is how she knows exactly what she wants in life, what’s important at the moment and is not afraid for others to see that side hers. But there's this part at the ending scene where she does look quite scary...


An average first episode, nothing to shout about at all. Naoko is the main character but she's just not standing out enough to make her memorable. In fact, I find Aya more interesting though with limited scenes. Well, that's the difference between a good actress and a new or average one like Eikura Nana. Not that I have anything to complain about her acting, but I think she's still warming up to her character. Most of the time, as a result of that, I find Naoko just looking confused throughout. Even her crying scenes aren't convincing enough. Another thing I find lacking is ARATA's character. Same problem with Naoko, not memorable at all. Writers, what are you doing with your characters? Please give them more life! I don't have problem with the actor at all, but it's the character itself that his only sole purpose is as if to be the guy the two female characters fight upon.


And the last quite terribly executed. How can they not realize that Naoko has been watching across the road from the beginning till the end?! Sure they got their hands full with the kid's accident, I still think Masato's reaction when he saw Naoko is bizarre! Shouldn't he be uh...surprised or delighted a bit to see his little niece around, instead...he's being BLUR and having that kind of- WHY IS THAT STRANGER STANDING THERE- face.

But cheers to Aya's line "She wants to watch me fail." on there.

The first episode was truly disappointing. Is it a mistake having Eikura Nana as the lead? I haven't watched much of her stuffs before this, only one drama and I really think that comedy saved her in that, but when it comes to a more dramatic and complex show like this, you need a certain level of experience and acting skillz to get this right. I was thinking, maybe her role would've been better played if people like Horikita Maki or maybe Ayase Haruka? I think Maki might be able to pull it off because of her previous complex characters in movies. Too bad Maki and Ayase are busy with other dramas. Well, I'm gonna give them the benefit of doubt for now since it's too early to judge. The only reason I can find to continue for now though is because of Kanno Miho. And thankfully, she's doing quite well with her character at the moment.

Special mention
Yeah, I just thought I should introduce this girl, Rai (Kimura Fumino) who's in the same group as Naoko in the university. Her first scene was quite fun to watch. Selling umbrellas during the rain, great method to make money when people are desperate to get one. She's the comic relief in this otherwise very serious or dull drama. And hey look! Mizobata Junpei is also here! Loved him in BOSS so it's a plus to have him. And he gives the girl the nickname Rai Rai...haha


Rating: 6.5/10 -they need to pick up with the plot if not, I'm dropping.

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