Posts Tagged ‘Great Teacher Onizuka’
This was the GTO (Great Teacher Onizuka) New Year special and, considering how it turned out, it might be the only special GTO gets this year. I’m not going to pull any punches on this one – as a fan of the summer series, I found it a huge disappointment.
Things begin badly at the school Christmas party where Onizuka (AKIRA) is dressed up as a Christmas tree.
Introducing the main character in such a lackluster way is just horrible – especially when in the main series and the first special his entry into the scene was always a bit more . . . inspiring. But that’s not the main problem with the way things start.
No, my trouble with this special began with Kanzaki (Honda Tsubasa) hitting on Onizuka. As disturbing as it is to see a student interact with a teacher that way, that wasn’t too bad by itself, since we have some background about how the particular bond/attachment between them developed, and Honda-san plays the scene well. The trouble was with the reactions of the teachers watching the scene, who treated the behavior as normal. I’m sorry, maybe it’s a cultural thing, but is a student openly fawning over a teacher taken so blandly, even in comedy? Is it normal for a teacher (in this case Fuyutsuki played by Takimoto Miori) to see a student as competition for love?
Okay, I might be overreacting to it, but what’s with this way of starting the show? There’s a total lack of tension or excitement, and the humor is . . . difficult to appreciate.
This GTO (Great Teacher Onizuka) 2012 two-hour special aired on October 2nd. If you aren’t caught up with the main 11 episode series, you might want to check those out first, or at least read the reviews I did of them. I held off reviewing it until subtitles were available and, sure enough, paroissien.com came through with them, so thanks to Eric for making the series accessible to English-speakers.
Kanzaki makes a light jab at Fuyutsuki’s feelings for Onizuka, then shares her Onizuka scrapbook (which leads to a montage of clips from the main series, reminding us about what Onizuka has done).
So here we are – the final episode of the top drama of the 2012 Summer season. Well, not quite the last episode, since we’re going to get a GTO (Great Teacher Onizuka) special in early October, but this is the conclusion of the planned run. With a special scheduled so quickly after the season, there’s also a chance that there will be more to come.
At the end of the previous episode, Onizuka (AKIRA) had been reinstated as a teacher, mainly because his new nemesis, headmaster Daimon Misuzu (Nishida Naomi), felt it best to keep her enemy close. At the same time, he found out that he had a cerebral , and needed to take it easy for a while and get medical attention. Not much chance of that, though, is there?
Back at headmaster headquarters, Daimon and her two minions – Kikuchi (Takada Sho) and Shibuya Sho (Nomura Shuhei – 野村周平) – continue in their plot to destroy Director Sakurai (Kuroki Hitomi) and the fabric of the school. Incidentally, we just recently saw Nomura-kun in the seventh episode of Kuro no Onna Kyoushi, which I reviewed here. I had a high opinion of his performance there, but couldn’t figure out his name. Hopefully, he’ll do a good job here, as well.
When we last left Onizuka (played by AKIRA), he had resigned from the school in the midst of pressure, in what was a slightly disappointing episode since the adversity he faced really wasn’t insurmountable. Don’t worry, though – this episode features a truly devilish plot involving the one student Onizuka neglected to save before he resigned – Kikuchi Yoshito (Takada Sho).
With evil genius Aizawa (Kawaguchi Haruna) now in the Onizuka camp, the new antagonist we’re introduced to at the start of this episode is this determined-looking woman:
That’s the new headmaster Daimon Misuzu (Nishida Naomi), and she was once a protege of the beloved Director (Kuroki Hitomi). In fact, Daimon continues to act in the way the Director taught, before the Director had that trouble with class 2-4 and realized that she had been wrong.
We’re going to get to know that old method intimately during the course of this episode, and the Director doesn’t appear to like that.
After two weeks of watching political conventions – one had me bored out of my mind, and the other occasionally brought tears to my eyes – I need a break from the pseudo-reality of politics and a catch-up weekend with the more honest fantasies of Japanese dramas, starting with this season’s biggest hit.
When we last left GTO (Great Teacher Onizuka), it looked like Onizuka (AKIRA) had cleared the field of all opposition except his most potent nemesis – Aizawa Miyabi (Kawaguchi Haruna). At the same time, we got a glimpse of Aizawa at home and in a more vulnerable state, as Kanzaki played a nasty little prank on her. Seeing Kawaguchi-san tackling this aspect of Aizawa’s character made me wonder whether she would be able to transition from evil Miyabi to sympathetic Miyabi. To my logic, the only way for that to be possible is if what happened to Miyabi’s friend – the event that precipitated her hatred of all teachers – was significantly worse than what Miyabi herself has attempted to do to Onizuka and other students in the past eight episodes.
But while Onizuka apparently has the students except for Miyabi on his side, he really hasn’t dealt with the teachers, and in the opening, we see two of them plotting to destroy him by revealing his “crimes.”
They release the information to the press, leading to quite a mess:
This episode of GTO (Great Teacher Onizuka) begins with a recap of episode seven, which contained the seeds of the conflict in this episode and focused on student Kanzaki Urumi (Honda Tsubasa). In that episode, Kanzaki made her way onto Onizuka (AKIRA)’s list of friends, and in the process elicited the ire of evil student Aizawa Miyabi (Kawaguchi Haruna). At the end of the episode, Miyabi posted details of Kanzaki’s secret all over school.
Before we get to that, Onizuka has to be released from the hospital, and he’s busy gawking at the doctor during his check-up:
He gets the news that Kanzaki is in trouble:
In recent episodes of GTO (Great Teacher Onizuka), we’ve been getting hints about student Kanzaki Urumi (Honda Tsubasa), who is both extremely intelligent and vulnerable. She has set herself in opposition to the machinations of Aizawa Miyabi (Kawaguchi Haruna), who has in turn threatened that she will reveal Kanzaki’s sercet. As of yet, we don’t have a clue what that might be, but it looks like we might find out in this episode, because Kanzaki is front and center – literally:
Don’t worry, she doesn’t die in the opening scene (which would be a shame, because she’s an interesting character):
The thing is, we know she’s clever enough to figure out the stopping distance for the train. We also know that she likes to put herself right at the edge.
Back in the classroom . . . is Onizuka (AKIRA) actually trying to teach something!?