If anyone asks me two years ago about my opinion of JDrama or Japanese live action movies, I tell you my answer would not be a positive one. Watching Kimi ni Todoke live action movie left such a bad taste in my mouth that I find it hard to watch another series. Although I won’t go as far as to say that I hate it completely, they just weren’t my cup of tea.
That was until I was asked to watch Nodame Cantabile live action drama on YouTube.
To my surprise, I enjoyed the series very much. I didn’t feel like it’s stiff, which is one of the main reasons I shunned the category for as long as I did. Sure, there were what I call exaggerated actions or movements (something I’m not quite fond of in live action stuff), but coming from having watched the anime and read the manga, I can relate (it’s an excuse! >.<). In the end, I managed to watch the whole series plus the specials and movies. Pretty good stuff.
Remember the friend who asked me for anime recommendations a while ago? She ended up watching a few JDrama series and introduced me to them. I was a little more open to giving those series a shot after having a wonderful experience with Nodame Cantabile series. I took my sweet time though, lol. She gave four series and I only managed to complete two. And she gave me those series early last year! I managed to slot in those two series while on the move. Internet at the places I traveled to on work commitments isn’t friendly to me so I spent my late nights watching the dramas at the hotels.
I started with Attention Please, a series based on manga of the same name, and then quickly followed by 1 Litre of Tears, a touching true story of a girl’s battle with spinocerebellar degeneration. Both drama are very different in terms of genre and material. One was a super fun comedy while the other made me wanna cry.
What I noticed was I wasn’t annoyed or irritated by the flow of the series or awkwardness/stiffness of the actors I sometimes sensed. Both series managed to pull off a decent presentation of the materials. Each of the series triggered the rightful emotions/response from the audience. This I can tell because after discussing the series my friend (who doesn’t, right?), I found that we shared the same opinion regarding both series. I think the most important point is that both Attention Please and 1 Litre of Tears managed to win over two people who previously never really liked the idea of watching JDrama series. That’s some kind of accomplishment, don’t you think?
Oh, Paradise Kiss live action movie ain’t bad too. It even prompted me to watch the anime, which was super fun and a unique experience.
It’s either I had terrible runs with JDrama/J-movies before seeing the aforementioned titles or my taste has changed and that I’m a little less picky. Hey, you know sometimes people changed with age! Or maybe now I understand that certain titles have weirdly dressed casts and exaggerated movements because they’re adapting according to source (it still feels weird though).
You know what. After that little experiments, maybe now I’m more willing to embrace the idea of watching live action series of the anime titles I’m following. Or maybe vice versa.