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June 24, 2002

KIKU's Japanese Soaps

True story: I was just on Fametracker when I got into a discussion about Japanese soap operas on KIKU. I started going on and on about this one Japanese soap in particular to which I got so addicted that I nearly stopped going to meetings for ASUH just so I could catch this one show, and see it till the very end.

Here's what I posted about the soap opera I was obsessed with:

Full disclosure: I live in Honolulu, and in my junior year of college I got sucked into a Japanese soap opera involving a hotshot executive who works as a hooker at night, unbeknownst to her coworkers and her conservative mother. Oh, my. I had all but cancelled all of my Monday-night student government meetings just so I could catch every episode until the very end. Ever since then I had not gotten involved in another Japanese soap opera, but it hasn't stopped a lot of my friends from watching them on KIKU (which I haven't watched since I stopped getting cable and they stopped airing Ranma 1/2).

Anyway, I also ended up discussing things about how there's always the generational conflict in most Japanese TV series, and how the production values made them a tad more watchable than the Korean soaps on KBFN (sp?). Again, I don't get KIKU at home any more, but I just couldn't help but reminisce...

Posted by Stella at June 24, 2002 09:43 PM


Posted by Vivi on June 25, 2002 6:42 AM:

::grin:: My big thing right now is Hagure Keiji, that ancient show (it's going into its 14th season!) about a Japanese detective and the murders he solves. It's not CSI, but I find it oddly compelling.

I was always drawn to the strange "doramas" like Pu-Pu-Pu (Down and Out, about 3 young guys who decide to strike out on their own instead of going to college) and Heaven Cannot Wait (about a guy who has a strange guardian angel that insists he must do certain tasks else he will die at the end of each week. Sort of like Quantum Leap.)

My mom's addicted to the Korean dramas. She has to turn the TV to Channel 4 every night at 8. Thank goodness for multiple TVs.

Posted by Ryan on June 25, 2002 7:13 AM:

My dad and stepmom usually follow at least one Japanese drama each season.

I think right now it's "Pretty Girls" (Hana takes on the Andrews department store) and "Kintaro" (former motorcycle gang leader turns corporate bigwig).

Japanese-made dramas and sitcoms have certainly come a long way. I certainly put them at least a Hollywood generation ahead of Korean shows (except, perhaps, when it comes to pop music concerts). But in time, I figure, everyone will be pumping out their own "E.R." and "Law & Order."

Posted by NemesisVex on June 26, 2002 3:53 AM:

Three words: Toyama no Kinsan.

But then that falls more under Edo-period action show than Japanese 'dorama'.

Hmmm. A Japanese version of 'Law and Order'? Does the murder rate in Japan warrant it? ;)

Posted by Keith H. on July 2, 2002 7:05 PM:

Three words: Toyama no Kinsan.

Two more words: Abarenbo Shogun.

Hmmm. A Japanese version of 'Law and Order'? Does the murder rate in Japan warrant it? ;)

A while back, KIKU had a series called "Investigator Mariko," about a forensic investigator.

Posted by Keith H. on July 2, 2002 7:12 PM:

Oh...there's also "Making It Through." My mom used to follow it for a while. Got all the elements of a good soap...different subplots, meddling mothers-in-law, rebellious children...

Posted by Renee on February 8, 2004 9:00 PM:

hi japanese soap lovers out there... i was wondering if anyone knows how i can get my hands on the series, "Zutto Anataga Suki datta". This was aired several years back. Would appreciate it if anyone could let me know.


Posted by John on February 8, 2004 9:06 PM:

One of my favorite ones was one I only saw a few episodes of, but it was a 10-part series called "Love On Hold" (aired around 1998 or so).

Posted by Sharon on February 12, 2004 1:44 AM:

Okay -

I was living in los angeles and around october 2003 they were airing a show about a young boy who was seeking revenge on the bank because his father committed suicide by falling off the building because the bank wouldn't give him a loan for his failing business. When this boy got older he sought out the son of the man who owned the bank and befriended him and his friends and pretended to be rich and stuff. He was also sleeping with the girlfriend of his rich friend. Anyway, there was a girl in it with a limp who played the piano and ended up getting hit by a car and dying. Just when they were falling in love...
I MISSED THE ENDING!!! I DONT KNOW WHAT HAPPENED TO HIM!! I can' t remember his name in the show, either!

Has anyone seen this soap opera? The boy on it was really good looking.

Posted by Louis A. on July 7, 2004 5:57 AM:

Did anyone see ending of "My Blue Sky"?
Did Nazuna and Kento get married?
Louis A.

Posted by Rabs on July 8, 2004 10:19 PM:

can someone help me out....i'm trying to find this soap opera on channel 4, it's a korean one, but i don't know wah it's called...i don't know when it's usually on but i know it's on like at 8 pm....i know some of the character's name....i know one of them is Mi-ran, Ji-eun, Ms. Lee....and I know there is a SEO, and they are part of this new clothing or some kind of brand line....but yeah, i don't know wah the name is called so PLEASE someone help me out...if you know wah i'm talking about and if you know the name of it....please feel free to email me....PLEASE.

Posted by Eunice on August 11, 2004 6:49 PM:

it's called the phoenix, bulsae in korean.

Posted by Joe on August 30, 2004 7:23 PM:

Hello! Back in the mid-80s the local (So Cal) international channel (KSCI-18) showed a Japanese soap opera about three families trying to get their respective kids (a girl named Kaoru, and 2 boys, I believe) into a good high school. It ran about 28 episodes, I think. I only remember bits and pieces of some scenes: Kaoru and one of the boys get drenched (don't remember how--caught in a storm?) and huddle together under a blanket to keep warm, but their parents find them and think they're having sex. At the end of another episode, the three moms pretend to be shooting laser guns at each other, and laser beams actually appear. One of the kids gave his teacher a gift of appreciation, but the teacher thought it was supposed to be a bribe. The opening titles/song featured the three moms dancing with their kids. I think the English title was something like "Afternoon Housewives" (???). Anyone recognize this series? Thanks! --Joe :-)

Posted by Nicole on November 17, 2004 7:32 PM:

looking to find the compelte 22 episode Kiku run TV series of "Toyama no Kinsan" on DVD or VHS, english subtitled, series ended 6-10-99. can any one help me locate this to buy

Posted by Jennifer on February 25, 2005 2:31 PM:

Could anyone tell me where to find a website dedicated to Thai and Japanese soaps. I had found one but lost the web address. Thanks.

Posted by joan o'shea on September 9, 2005 2:05 AM:

im trying to find or get some pic's of toyama no kinsan for my mother&myself if anyone out there knows where to get them please tell me.rhanks

Posted by Winslow on January 7, 2006 6:08 PM:

Which version of Toyama do you refer to? Because there have been so many different actors portraying him. To name a few actors, they are Hashi Yukio, Kataoka Chiezo, Nakamura Umenosuke, Matsukata Hiroki, Saigo Teruhiko, Sugi Ryotaro. And I'm sure there are many more who have played that role.

Posted by Paul on June 7, 2006 7:03 PM:

There was a show in the 1980's called Akatsuke Ryonosuke or simply 'Officer Ryonosuke.' It was about a high ranking samurai who gave up all to become a police officer. He had a manservant and a housekeeper and was fantastic with a sword. Can anyone tell me more about this show. I can't even find evidence that it even existed. My old roommate and myself would watch it all the time.

Posted by Kate on July 2, 2006 5:19 PM:

I lived in Hawaii in the early 80s and got addicted to this one Japanese show called "Kinsan". I believe he was a Magistrate who was always asking the bad guys to knock the cherry blossoms off of his arm. I would love to find a DVD of this series. Anyone out there that could lead me in the right direction, I would appreciate it. No luck doing a search on Google.

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