Very true. The thing is that it’s not that I didn’t like the dramas, instead I started out enjoying the dramas very much. It’s just that as the story went along, each of the dramas turned until I disliked one (Rich man, Poor Woman) or the drove me crazy (A Clinic on the Sea).
Despite the chastising by my friend, I felt like I’d done my duty in giving them a fair shot, and was able to cross them off my list. Guilt Free.
Suddenly it changed. Due to an injury I’ve been stuck inside. Terrible for moral but wonderful for my Kdrama watching time. After spending one week watching the wonderful Life Is Beautiful, the next weekend I decided to try another weekend drama I’d heard was good, and yet after 3 episodes realized it was pretty terrible. Add the bad drama to my blue mood and it was a case for the drama blahs.
So I reached out—told Cherry to find me a new drama. It’s a funny thing my friend Kate and I used to do when we were roommates. One would be bored and the other would choose three movies the bored one would have to choose to watch. Sometimes limiting choices is the best way to make a decision. Also, by putting the decision in someone else’s hands allows you to try something you may not have considered before.
To my surprise, the drama Cherry told me to watch was a fluffy Japanese drama. I figured what the hey—my mood couldn’t get any worse. However, to my surprise I found myself enjoying it. Yes, there was plenty of crazy. It was over the top cheerful with plenty of heart. If I were to describe it, I’d say it’s as if Enrique barfed up a Jdrama.
As it is Jdrama with only 11, 45 minute episodes, I had plenty of time to watch another. This time flying blind I chose a drama called Pride. And was hooked. By the end the drama drove me crazy, however, that didn’t matter, I found a new fascination.
Do you know him? Have you seen any of his dramas? If you haven’t you should. He’s amazing. Him, on the screen is just magnetic. I found myself watching drama after drama of his—which kind of weirded me out actually—as his career spans decades. In the morning I’d see him in his early twenties and by the evening, there he was in his 40’s.
Before I realized it I had quite a few dramas of his under my belt. And that’s when I made the decision. I’ve challenged myself to watch every drama of his I can get my hands on. Despite the fact that Japanese dramas are a little harder to get your hands on, I still have quite the collection to get through.
This challenge reminds me of my Month of Kdrama I did the other Christmas. And just as I took that challenge seriously, as will I do this—what can I say? I’m so competitive—even with myself.
So here is a list of his dramas and movies. Yellow are the ones that are available for me to watch. The ones that are crossed out are the ones I’ve already made my way through. If you see something that is not highlighted and you know where I can watch—please let me know!
Now don’t worry, JDrama has not replaced Kdrama in my heart. Nope, Kdrama still rules there. But this guy, this Kimura Takuya, I can not stop watching him. So I’m going to ride this train until he hits second season (the point where I burn out on something I once loved). Until I reach that point, I must keep going. So wish me well, and I’ll see you on the other side.
Sono toki Heartwa Nusumareta (Fuji TV, 1992)
The Dancing Girl of Izu / Izu no Odorikko (TV Tokyo, 1993)
Asunaro Hakusho / Ordinary People (Fuji TV, 1993)
Wakamono no Subete (Fuji TV, 1994)
Kimi wa Toki no kanata e / Beyond Your Time (TV Asahi, 1995)
Jinsei wa Joujoda (TBS, 1995)
Furuhata Ninzaburo 1 (Fuji TV, Takuya in 1996 episode. Drama starts 1994.)
Long Vacation (Fuji TV, 1996)
Kyousoukyoku / Concerto (TBS, 1996)
Boku ga boku de aru tame ni (Fuji TV, 1997)
Ii Hito (Fuji TV, 1997)
Gift (Fuji TV, 1997)
Love Generation (Fuji TV, 1997)
Oda Nobunaga (1998)
Nemureru Mori (Fuji TV, 1998)
Beautiful Life (TBS, 2000)
Food Fight (NTV, 2000)
Hero (Fuji TV, 2001)
Sora Kara Furu Ichioku no Hoshi / Hundred Million Stars From the Sky (Fuji TV, 2002)
Good Luck!! (TBS, 2003)
Pride (Fuji TV, 2004)
Love and Dreams (2005)
Engine (Fuji TV, 2005)
Saiyuuki (Fuji TV, 2006, Ep 1)
Hero SP aka Hero in Europe (Fuji TV, 2006)
Karei naru Ichizoku / The Grand Tribe / The Family (TBS, 2007)
Change! (Fuji TV, 2008)
Goro’s Bar (as Takura) (TBS, 2009)
Mr. Brain (TBS, 2009)
Tsuki no Koibito aka Moon Lovers (Fuji TV, 2010)
Nankyoku Tairiku: Kami no Ryoiki ni Idomunda Otoko to Inu no Monogatari / Antarctica (TBS, 2011)
Priceless (Fuji TV, 2012)
Ando Lloyd – A.I. Knows Love? (TBS, 2013)
Otōto (TBS, 1990)
Kimi o Wasurenai / Fly Boys, Fly! (as Junichiro Ueda) (1995)
Konya wa Eigyochu / Open 24 Hours (Fuji TV, 1999)
Chūshingura 1/47 (2001)
Howl’s Moving Castle (voice) (2004)
2046 (Tak) (2004)
Love and Honor (2006)
I Come with the Rain (Shitaro) (2008)
Redline (voice) (2010)
Space Battleship Yamato (2010)