Archive for January, 2013
I’ve taken longer than usual getting to this episode of KisuHama Learning (キス濱ラーニング) because, frankly, I wouldn’t recommend it. That is, unless you like seeing funny expressions from Hamaguchi Masaru-san or watching him eat food – both of which are apparently high entertainment among the Japanese, but insufficient to keep me interested.
In this special episode, the Kis-My-Ft2 guys aren’t really involved – they’re watching a VTR of a challenge Hamaguchi-san took on earlier this month for another variety show’s special.
In my December 19th review for this show, I wrote, “any more eating episodes or musical instrument episodes (barring something that elementary school students don’t play, like guitars or violins) are not going to get favorable reviews from me.” I gave them a pass on the first challenge (first two episodes) of the year, because it was related to Tamamori-kun’s new drama, Nobunaga no Chef, which naturally involved food. That leeway doesn’t extend to this episode.
The number one single this week was “Help Me!!” from Morning Musume, selling 93,286. It should see gold (100,000) next week.
“Promise You” from Super Junior-K.R.Y. came in at #2 with 69,067 copies sold.
AAA’s “Miss you/Hohoemi no Saku Basho” took #3 with 39,831.
At #4 was Sakanaction‘s “Music”, selling 35,065 in its first week.
Five IDOLM@STER releases pushed down everything else (I hate when this happens), to the ranks from here down are a bit lower than they normally would have been.
Tohoshinki‘s “Catch Me – If you wanna -” took #11, selling 9,990 in week two, bringing its total to 147,018.
Yamada Ryosuke-kun’s “Mystery Virgin” was at #14 in its third week, adding 7,928 for a total of 210,382.
“Kirigirisu Jin” from No Sleeves was right behind, selling 7,719 for a two-week total of 70,509.
And at #16, Golden Bombers continued to go strong, with “Dance My Generation” now totaling 153,741 in sales over four weeks.
Over thirteen weeks (a full season), AKB48’s “UZA” has held onto a top 30 position, but it might be nearing the end of its stay, now at #28 with a total of 1,246,151 copies sold. Right behind at #29 was “Eien Pressure” from the group, in only its eighth week and totaling 1,188,979 in sales.
Most dramas had their sophomore slump this week. Among the dramas I’m keeping track of, that meant Biblia Koshodo no Jiken Techo, Last Hope, Nakuna, Hara-chan, and Share House no Koibito all dropped two percent, give or take. With the first episode curiosity worn off, these second episode numbers are more like what we can expect for the rest of the season. And . . . well, it doesn’t look like people are very interested in dramas this season, does it?
The clear hit for the season is a drama I’m not keeping track of – Tonbi. It’s got Sato Takeru-kun in it, which is probably the only plus. Otherwise, it’s a family drama, and I seem to be allergic to those – they make me fall asleep. Anyway, it’s three percent ahead of anything else, with the closest competitor Biblia needing to post 16% or 17% marks to catch up.
TokyoHive provides a more complete listing of dramas and their ratings, as well as the context of their time slot and the other shows competing with them, twice every week. The most recent of those articles is available here.
Prime Time Shows
Biblia Koshodo no Jiken Techo – (01) 14.3%, (02) 12.2%
Last Hope – (01) 14.2%, (02) 11.9%
Nakuna, Hara-chan – (01) 12.9%, (02) 10.3%
Share House no Koibito – (01) 11.6%, (02) 9.6%
Nobunaga no Chef – (01) 11.6%, (02) 9.9%, (03) 10.1%
Karamazov no Kyoudai – (01) 7.4%, (02) 7.3%, (03) 8.5%
Late Night Shows
Shinryochu -in the Room- – (01) 3.1%, (02) 2.7%, (03) 2.5%
Kodomo Keishi – (01) 1.7%
With Piece in its second to last episode, it’s about time that Mizuho (Honda Tsubasa) and Hiro (Nakayama Yuma) meet. We’ve had episodes of build-up to this, so there’s no mistaking it – this is the climax of the series. Enjoy!
At the end of episode 11, the two of them passed each other by chance, and we left them in mid-stride. Before we go back to that scene to see what happened, we get a little flashback into Hiro’s past.
And we see Origuchi (Mizuno Erina), the center of this mystery, admiring his paintings.
And he still has a painting of her:
Can the well-read owner of a rare book shop use her knowledge to solve mysteries? Biblia Koshodou no Jiken Techou (ビブリア古書堂の事件手帖 – Biblia Rare Books Hall Case Files) seeks to answer that question. But even if it’s possible, will we get serious mysteries or some lightweight stuff seeking to capitalize on the interesting premise?
The drama begins with a key point about how someone would sign a book as a gift to someone else (at least, in Japanese culture) – the recipient’s name goes at the center of the page, and the person giving the book writes theirs at a bottom corner. This episode will involve a book in which the position of these two are reversed.
It begins with main character Goura Daisuke (AKIRA) getting bored. He came to this bookshop to find out if the signature of Natsume Soseki in one of his grandmother’s books is legitimate. If it is, the book would be worth a bundle.
Unfortunately, the young woman at this shop – Shinokawa Shioriko (Gouriki Ayame) – seems to be taking a long time to figure it out.
This leads Daisuke to make many, many paper cranes. At this rate, his wish will surely come true.
In Kodomo Keishi (コドモ警視), Marius Yo-kun (マリウス葉) plays Hazama Seishiro, a 36 year-old police investigator who was turned into a child by a gas produced by an organization known as “Red Venus”. This series is a sequel to last spring’s Kodomo Keisatsu, but if it was just that, I probably wouldn’t be reviewing it. You see, Kodomo Keisatsu had some serious flaws. While Kodomo Keishi shares some of those, this first episode was free of most of them, as I will use this review to demonstrate.
The thing is, it doesn’t look like this series is likely to get subtitled. I hope that some intrepid translator team out there will give this series a chance despite how lackluster Kodomo Keisatsu was, but I’m going to go ahead and review it with or without subs, anyway. It will be tricky, though, because it’s even difficult to find the raw versions.
Instead of centering on events in the actual police force, as Kodomo Keisatsu did, this series focuses on Hazama’s civilian life, in which he has to return to school (or else presumably have to prove to everybody he meets during the daytime that he’s not a truant).
This particular episode focuses on two of his classmates:
Right from the beginning, it’s clear that there’s something between them, but what?
Hazama is a real investigator with bigger fish to fry, so he doesn’t seem particularly interested in the doings of his classmates. Classmate Kitabayashi Yumi (Minamino Saki) shows some interest in him, though:
This week’s Himitsu no Arashi-chan (ひみつの嵐ちゃん) begins with a share house segment in which Ohno-san and Ninomiya-kun play host to 60 year-old Natsuki Mari-san (夏木マリ):
Doesn’t look like age is slowing her down at all. Before she arrives, the two Arashi members get comfortable:
They kick things off by talking about the end of their all-Japan tour which, according to the little green blurb at the bottom, was a great success/packed (大盛況 – daiseikyou).