[Discussion] Last Friends - Nagasawa Masami/Ueno Juri/Eita

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nokchan
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Post by nokchan » Apr 27th, '08, 02:50

Ok here is my theory:
I will be so kind to give kudos to the show and believe that the prolonged MichiruxSousuke story is basic for the other stories as well. I base my theory on one Eita scene. When they were talking about the DV story Takeru said (based on great soft subs and not my own understanding, cause there is non): I absolutly hate this kind of thing. To do something like this, one must not have any conscience. But for the person receiving, they'd be scarred for life. The mask of love, when worn leads to violence, is the worst form of love.

Eri laughs about it afterwards (for my feelings, mostly to relieve the tension) but as we know thanks to Ep 3 he receive a "scar" when he was very young. So in this moment he relates mostly to himself. So I would say the DV story goes on so long so all of the members relate to it

Takeru: Scars that you get from a mask of love worn while violence rules. Afterwards you will live in agony.
Ruka: Liberation that takes place when you free yourself from the bindings that you wear, because you're afraid what one you love might think.
Eri: The solitude that surrounds you because you cannot tell what is in your heart. So you take on a brave face to walk the walk, talk the talk and play the game (or whatever the cool kids say nowadays).

I think this might be a drama about friends helping out someone in trouble and reveal through that their own scars, troubles and anxieties.

And as said I think that they want us to believe that Eri is the fun, carefree party girl so they can shock us more in the end. Maybe because I can relate to her. I know how it feels to pretend to be happy while you are actually deadly miserable (no pun intended).

While here I also want to give my kudos to Ryo. I have never been a fan of him. He was there in News, backgrounding my Yamapi. And that was okay. But I want to give kudos to him. While every actor always says how fun it is to play a bad guy I think it is a completly different thing to play an actual "bad" guy.

Acting as someone you tries to get world domination might be fun because it is totally out of this world.

Acting something as real as DV is hard. I think it is hard to slapped your female partner around if you are not that kind of guy (and I just assume know, boldly that he isn't). To be someone that lives everywhere, doing that every hour of every day somewhere in the world. I don't think that is such fun and so easy.

So kudos Ryo. You deserve it! I love to hate you. You make it easy for me to hate your character. You do a good job.

Thats my statement for tonight.

It is 4:50 am right now, which means it is sleepy times for shrimps like me.

Good night.

noggie

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Post by Vanilla-Rain » Apr 27th, '08, 03:07

I just finished episode three...and oh my god.

...I am in tears right now, like, bawling, blubbering. I never ever ever cry about anything you know...that's staged but, GOD this drama is REALLY pulling my heart strings..and I am now in high anticipation for number 4...I am going to to hold out til May 6th when Kioku gets theirs uploaded.... What Michiru said to Ruka at the end of the ep.....god...I totally lost it..

I don't know if I'll be able to sleep tonight (it's 11pm right now) I got so so so many unanswered questions and it's just doing my head in. Due time Sara, due time you'll figure them iut,

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Post by moonchyld » Apr 27th, '08, 03:19

i feel kinda bad everyone hates ryo now.. XD but i guess it also means he's playing his part well.. he really IS creepy.. but actually what i'm most interested in in this drama (apart from juri's big secret) is a background look or explanation on sousuke. takeru and eri's story feels like it will turn out into something already done before (not that it makes me look forward to it any less..), but don't you guys think looking into the mind of the dark, deep and troubled and how they got there is fascinating? or maybe i'm just weird. haha XD
my guess is sousuke is like that as a reaction to his job... i think that because everyday he sees kids being forsaken by their parents, promises broken (remember the kid waiting for his mom), being lied to and being beaten.. that that somehow has turned him into being very scared of being left and lied to.. thus becoming a possessive maniac who lets out his stress/anger (AGONY) thru DV.

i once read that those who hurt/hit other people are actually those who have been hurt/hit before. besides, i think we're gonna continues seeing ryo to the end.. he is a johnny's after all; can't have him taking a role that has no resolution. XD.. ryo needs to redeem himself somehow..fast! hehe.

btw, more and more i think ruka will be the one to die. hopefully not cuz that will suck so bad; but the beginning sequence already gave us preview that this isn't a happy-ending kinda drama anyway... :-(
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Post by lilswtangel » Apr 27th, '08, 03:50

I also just finished watching the third episode
Sosuke's getting way too possessive.

Midway through the episode, I became so angry (but at the same time sympathetic) towards Michiru for putting through with him.....especially where her job was concern. She's ruining her future as a hair stylist by trying to hard to comply to Sosuke's demands! Now her boss sees her as spoiled and big-headed (egotisical) for wanting to leave early and NOT wanting to deal with male customers.

But at the end, I wanted to applaud her for FINALLY standing up for herself, especially concerning the subject of Ruka.

Then...........of course Sosuke dismissed everything she said except for the whole, "Watashi no Ruka / My Ruka" part and then proceeds to beat her up.

I love Ruka.......and I think my first guess that she's the one who died in the first episode might actually be the truth. I probably has to do with her urilogy (?? too lazy to recheck the correct terminology) illness........and judging from the preview of episode 4, it's getting worst.
Ruka is LOVE~ I hate Sosuke but I still love Ryo-chan!
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Post by bmwracer » Apr 27th, '08, 04:18

Daish wrote:Nodame is more than great :D
Well yeah, but I didn't want to sound too biased. :mrgreen:
If you need me to seed Ueno Juri-chan or Yonekura Ryoko-chan stuff, please PM me. :salut:

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Post by QNSpider » Apr 27th, '08, 05:12

I'm beginning to think the death will probably be someone unexpected....like the guy who's wife is cheating on him or something.
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Post by MusicDorch » Apr 27th, '08, 05:16

Hey guys, I'm new to this forum. I've watched Jdramas for awhile, and I'm seriously addicted to Last Friends. I've been reading some of the posts on this thread, though, and have a few thoughts.

It's kind of depressing to see how many people disliking Michiru for not standing up for herself and leaving Sousuke. I can't find the post now, but someone even said she was asking to be abused.
Especially given what we know of her background, that she hasn't felt loved fully, by her parents or anyone, it makes sense that she would form a deep emotional bond with someone she feels loved by for the first time. If she doesn't know what love is supposed to be like, what would motivate her to leave a guy she believes loves her?
Anyway, aside from that rant, I'm already biting my nails in anticipation for episode 4. I keep changing my guess as to who will die at the end, but I have a theory.
A lot of people have been guessing that Ruka is going to die, but at this point I'm thinking maybe not. The way they do those nostalgic reflections now and then, it sounds like they're being told after the events of the story. MIchiru, Takeru, and Ruka all narrate. Also, Michiru starts writing to Ruka in the first episode, right? I guess we don't know for sure, but that's what I'm thinking right now.

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Post by ^Yuuki » Apr 27th, '08, 05:23

nokchan wrote:Ok here is my theory:
I will be so kind to give kudos to the show and believe that the prolonged MichiruxSousuke story is basic for the other stories as well. I base my theory on one Eita scene. When they were talking about the DV story Takeru said (based on great soft subs and not my own understanding, cause there is non): I absolutly hate this kind of thing. To do something like this, one must not have any conscience. But for the person receiving, they'd be scarred for life. The mask of love, when worn leads to violence, is the worst form of love.

Eri laughs about it afterwards (for my feelings, mostly to relieve the tension) but as we know thanks to Ep 3 he receive a "scar" when he was very young. So in this moment he relates mostly to himself. So I would say the DV story goes on so long so all of the members relate to it

Takeru: Scars that you get from a mask of love worn while violence rules. Afterwards you will live in agony.
Ruka: Liberation that takes place when you free yourself from the bindings that you wear, because you're afraid what one you love might think.
Eri: The solitude that surrounds you because you cannot tell what is in your heart. So you take on a brave face to walk the walk, talk the talk and play the game (or whatever the cool kids say nowadays).

I think this might be a drama about friends helping out someone in trouble and reveal through that their own scars, troubles and anxieties.

And as said I think that they want us to believe that Eri is the fun, carefree party girl so they can shock us more in the end. Maybe because I can relate to her. I know how it feels to pretend to be happy while you are actually deadly miserable (no pun intended).

While here I also want to give my kudos to Ryo. I have never been a fan of him. He was there in News, backgrounding my Yamapi. And that was okay. But I want to give kudos to him. While every actor always says how fun it is to play a bad guy I think it is a completly different thing to play an actual "bad" guy.

Acting as someone you tries to get world domination might be fun because it is totally out of this world.

Acting something as real as DV is hard. I think it is hard to slapped your female partner around if you are not that kind of guy (and I just assume know, boldly that he isn't). To be someone that lives everywhere, doing that every hour of every day somewhere in the world. I don't think that is such fun and so easy.

So kudos Ryo. You deserve it! I love to hate you. You make it easy for me to hate your character. You do a good job.

Thats my statement for tonight.

It is 4:50 am right now, which means it is sleepy times for shrimps like me.

Good night.

noggie
I totally agree. They need some sort of a 'main story' in order to slowly develop other characters around it in a way. Else we probably won't find much of a connection that ties them together like the red ribbon symbolizes. And the DV issue itself. I think we're definitely seeing some development here no? Yeah, they don't explain much about why Sosuke is like that and just show him get crazier over time. I don't think he's a character that's suppose to redeem himself in the end. Ryo himself said it'll be great if he character can make people hate him so bad that they would hate DV as well(something to that effect). So it won't do to make people rationalize his behaviour. So I'm okay with them not explaining why he does what he does. Maybe a little would be fine, but I don't want to lose my hate for him. Haha. And since the title is called 'Last Friends', I'd rather they focus more on the friendship/raltionship between the other characters.

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Post by OceanBreeze20 » Apr 27th, '08, 05:26

Hi guys! First time here and amazingly first time watching a JDrama seriously lol
Just finished watching episode 3 and wow i can't stop thinking about it.
Juri has really gotten to me!

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Post by Salz » Apr 27th, '08, 05:40

MusicDorch wrote:Hey guys, I'm new to this forum. I've watched Jdramas for awhile, and I'm seriously addicted to Last Friends. I've been reading some of the posts on this thread, though, and have a few thoughts.

It's kind of depressing to see how many people disliking Michiru for not standing up for herself and leaving Sousuke. I can't find the post now, but someone even said she was asking to be abused.
Especially given what we know of her background, that she hasn't felt loved fully, by her parents or anyone, it makes sense that she would form a deep emotional bond with someone she feels loved by for the first time. If she doesn't know what love is supposed to be like, what would motivate her to leave a guy she believes loves her?
Anyway, aside from that rant, I'm already biting my nails in anticipation for episode 4. I keep changing my guess as to who will die at the end, but I have a theory.
A lot of people have been guessing that Ruka is going to die, but at this point I'm thinking maybe not. The way they do those nostalgic reflections now and then, it sounds like they're being told after the events of the story. MIchiru, Takeru, and Ruka all narrate. Also, Michiru starts writing to Ruka in the first episode, right? I guess we don't know for sure, but that's what I'm thinking right now.
but Takeru and Michiru narration kinda made from their future self point of view but Ruka narration kinda made from their current pov when the storyline took place and not like TakeruMichiru narration that take place after all the incident happen...she always talk bout what just happen but Takeru and Michiru talk bout what already happen in the past...
so Ruka might the one who die but i really hope she's not :pale:
@Yuuki, i seriously luv ur gif when Takeru tried to give piggyback ride to Ruka^^
that scene so cute :wub:
hope u can make some more RukaTakeru gif :thumleft:

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Post by ^Yuuki » Apr 27th, '08, 06:26

Salz wrote:
MusicDorch wrote:Hey guys, I'm new to this forum. I've watched Jdramas for awhile, and I'm seriously addicted to Last Friends. I've been reading some of the posts on this thread, though, and have a few thoughts.

It's kind of depressing to see how many people disliking Michiru for not standing up for herself and leaving Sousuke. I can't find the post now, but someone even said she was asking to be abused.
Especially given what we know of her background, that she hasn't felt loved fully, by her parents or anyone, it makes sense that she would form a deep emotional bond with someone she feels loved by for the first time. If she doesn't know what love is supposed to be like, what would motivate her to leave a guy she believes loves her?
Anyway, aside from that rant, I'm already biting my nails in anticipation for episode 4. I keep changing my guess as to who will die at the end, but I have a theory.
A lot of people have been guessing that Ruka is going to die, but at this point I'm thinking maybe not. The way they do those nostalgic reflections now and then, it sounds like they're being told after the events of the story. MIchiru, Takeru, and Ruka all narrate. Also, Michiru starts writing to Ruka in the first episode, right? I guess we don't know for sure, but that's what I'm thinking right now.
but Takeru and Michiru narration kinda made from their future self point of view but Ruka narration kinda made from their current pov when the storyline took place and not like TakeruMichiru narration that take place after all the incident happen...she always talk bout what just happen but Takeru and Michiru talk bout what already happen in the past...
so Ruka might the one who die but i really hope she's not :pale:
MusicDorch: I can understand where Michiru is coming from too. Coming from such a background could be a reason. But still, can't help but be frustrated by her at times you know? End of episode 3 was a great leap forward. When she stood up for herself and Ruka. She'll probably take a few steps back in the next episode but that's understandably part of the 'healing' process. Poor Ruka though. My heart bleeds for her. ='(

About the whole POV thing, yeah kinda disturbing that she's the only one with a present POV. But judging from the too many hints they're throwing at us to make us think that she's the one in danger, it can be a plot to throw us off course on the one that's really gonna die?
@Yuuki, i seriously luv ur gif when Takeru tried to give piggyback ride to Ruka^^
that scene so cute :wub:
hope u can make some more RukaTakeru gif :thumleft:
Too bad I stole them. Eheh. Someone shared a batch over at baidu. I'll try and find it again and share them here. =3

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Post by Nomanymore » Apr 27th, '08, 06:37

^Yuuki wrote:They need some sort of a 'main story' in order to slowly develop other characters around it in a way. Else we probably won't find much of a connection that ties them together like the red ribbon symbolizes. And the DV issue itself. I think we're definitely seeing some development here no? Yeah, they don't explain much about why Sosuke is like that and just show him get crazier over time. I don't think he's a character that's suppose to redeem himself in the end. Ryo himself said it'll be great if he character can make people hate him so bad that they would hate DV as well(something to that effect). So it won't do to make people rationalize his behaviour. So I'm okay with them not explaining why he does what he does. Maybe a little would be fine, but I don't want to lose my hate for him. Haha. And since the title is called 'Last Friends', I'd rather they focus more on the friendship/raltionship between the other characters.
well if it's so, I'd be really disappointed, cuz I put my hope otherwise.. I was expecting them to show how actually they handle the problem with DV, & not only to show it to scare people who see it. If it's just to show the meaning of friendship, then this drama has nothing special to me then, because it's little stereotype & somehow unfair. Ryo is sure doing well at making people hate his character, but if it's the only purpose , I don't see the point, it's not like everyone is 'blind' before watching the drama O_o they know the issue ,maybe not too much, but DV being abusive is nothing new ^^; I want to see what happened in the past of the DV, it'll help people to know him more .. About friendship, it's not like every victim of DV out there has such good friends like Ruka, Takeru or Eri ^^; heyyy, "this is drama" sh*t i almost forgot lol then what happens in real life when the victime is all alone? where would she seek for help? This drama will just leave me with many unanswered questions about this issue that I'd prob. look for it on the net, because I know this drama is not there to respond to those questions...

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Post by ^Yuuki » Apr 27th, '08, 07:16

Nomanymore wrote:
^Yuuki wrote:They need some sort of a 'main story' in order to slowly develop other characters around it in a way. Else we probably won't find much of a connection that ties them together like the red ribbon symbolizes. And the DV issue itself. I think we're definitely seeing some development here no? Yeah, they don't explain much about why Sosuke is like that and just show him get crazier over time. I don't think he's a character that's suppose to redeem himself in the end. Ryo himself said it'll be great if he character can make people hate him so bad that they would hate DV as well(something to that effect). So it won't do to make people rationalize his behaviour. So I'm okay with them not explaining why he does what he does. Maybe a little would be fine, but I don't want to lose my hate for him. Haha. And since the title is called 'Last Friends', I'd rather they focus more on the friendship/raltionship between the other characters.
well if it's so, I'd be really disappointed, cuz I put my hope otherwise.. I was expecting them to show how actually they handle the problem with DV, & not only to show it to scare people who see it. If it's just to show the meaning of friendship, then this drama has nothing special to me then, because it's little stereotype & somehow unfair. Ryo is sure doing well at making people hate his character, but if it's the only purpose , I don't see the point, it's not like everyone is 'blind' before watching the drama O_o they know the issue ,maybe not too much, but DV being abusive is nothing new ^^; I want to see what happened in the past of the DV, it'll help people to know him more .. About friendship, it's not like every victim of DV out there has such good friends like Ruka, Takeru or Eri ^^; heyyy, "this is drama" sh*t i almost forgot lol then what happens in real life when the victime is all alone? where would she seek for help? This drama will just leave me with many unanswered questions about this issue that I'd prob. look for it on the net, because I know this drama is not there to respond to those questions...
They ARE showing how the DV problem is being handled. Just not what's the cause of it(at least not yet). There are just too many reasons why people are in an abusive relationship. Be it the perpetrator or the victim. I don't know if it'll help the matter by pin pointing the root cause of his behaviour to an exact reason. People will just be compelled to blame it on his parents or something instead of him. It isn't just that simple. But hey, it's just my opinion...you don't have to worry about the drama not exploring Sosuke's background. So no hard feelings I hope. ^^ As for the other victims out there, of course they can't rely on the drama for example of what they should do. What they can rely on is increase their awareness that there are others out there with the same problem. Gain strength from the drama and save themselves out of the situation like Michiru did. Like how it's portrayed in the drama, the people around you can't help if you don't reach out. Even if there aren't any real life Ruka or Takeru or Eri around, that's not an excuse. I assume one of the main lessons of this drama would be, no one can save you if you don't want to save yourself.

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Post by Nomanymore » Apr 27th, '08, 07:45

^ well, so far, I don't see they develop anything more about the DV problem aside his violence & possessiveness over his girlfriend.. It's not who blames who, but the problem here is how it affected the DV. Nobody is born to be violent or a psycho O_o By digging in his past will help the viewer to see what could happen to make a person become like how he is today. And then they'll figure out a way to handle the DV, & not always running away..

ok I think I got away from the drama, since it's only eps 3, there's still a long way to go for LF. Let's hope there's more development in the future eps..

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Post by josean06 » Apr 27th, '08, 11:04

we need to take another look at the Takeru/Michiru relationship
this isn't new, but many have already known that Takeru and Michiru will have some kind of relationship, and the baby could easily be Takeru's. But the show is really confusing everyone, and yet there is no evidence or hint of who's going to die or be betrayed. Each character has the development throughout the end of epi.3 to be the one to really die. If you took it to a point where they could.

Epi.3
This episode really built on the DV between Michiru and Sousuke. Even in the preview, Michiru still worries about him, even though he's scum! It's psychological fact however that many daughters try to find a man that is like their father. Odd yes, but it has been confirmed that many daughters do look for a man that is a spitting image like their father (regardless of their personality). Since that is what she's used to Michiru feels like she's with her father. But she has to wait until she's bashed to realize that she needs to stay away, yet she still wants to try and "change him," or he needs "help."

We saw Eri and Ogura have some fun with each other. But I think we see Eri being a little too clingy or a little to cheery, but we still don't know her story. We should learn about Sousuke's past in order to understand him also however. These two characters haven't been built upon through their pasts, and only in their present personalities. Sousuke doesn't know how to trust, and he needs to learn that, or everyone will go after him and he'll push everyone he supposedly "loves" away.

Hopefully in the next episode we'll learn more about the pasts of these two characters. But in the preview, it looks like Ruka's going to kick his ass lol. But he's got to have a taste of his own medicine I think. Michiru should go to the police and have Sousuke arrested. But we should also see how Sousuke was before him and Michiru moved in together.

Bai Bai! And try not to cry next episode, and hopefully Sousuke gets a beat down by Ruka and Takeru and Michiru, lol, we can only hope right?! (Ryo really is good at making you hate him ne? Don't worry Jani8 and NEWS fans! lol he's just a really good actor!)

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Post by nouriko » Apr 27th, '08, 16:41

josean06 wrote:we need to take another look at the Takeru/Michiru relationship
noooo, cant imagine Takeru*Michi :scratch: , id rather Takeru*Ruka r Ruka*MIchi :D
gona watch epi3 now^^
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Post by lilswtangel » Apr 27th, '08, 16:44

josean06 wrote:we need to take another look at the Takeru/Michiru relationship
I guess we can't totally rule out Takeru's and Michiru's relationship. But with all honesty, I truly believe Sousuke to be the father of Michiru's baby.

Michiru herself has admitted as much when she mentioned that in her life, she has two treasures: 1) Sousuke 2) Ruka.

Plus, with Takeru's sexual ambiguity or rather his genophobia (since we have established that he has feelings for Ruka), it's kind of hard for me to imagine him getting over his sexual fears/frustrations and being able to father a baby after so many years of "agony".

After that phone call with the lady (whom I'm assuming is his mother?), I'm left wondering if he was possibly sexual abused as a child).

And also, his present voice narrates that Ruka has become special and important to him....so much as to have possibly fallen in love with her.
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Post by nouriko » Apr 27th, '08, 16:58

any1 know where i can get photos/pics from LastFriends, been lookin for some nice pic of Ruka and d others but i cud hardli find any><
thanks
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Post by Tomi » Apr 27th, '08, 17:07

lilswtangel wrote:
josean06 wrote:we need to take another look at the Takeru/Michiru relationship
I guess we can't totally rule out Takeru's and Michiru's relationship. But with all honesty, I truly believe Sousuke to be the father of Michiru's baby.

Michiru herself has admitted as much when she mentioned that in her life, she has two treasures: 1) Sousuke 2) Ruka.

Plus, with Takeru's sexual ambiguity or rather his genophobia (since we have established that he has feelings for Ruka), it's kind of hard for me to imagine him getting over his sexual fears/frustrations and being able to father a baby after so many years of "agony".

After that phone call with the lady (whom I'm assuming is his mother?), I'm left wondering if he was possibly sexual abused as a child).

And also, his present voice narrates that Ruka has become special and important to him....so much as to have possibly fallen in love with her.
I also think that Sousuke is the father because in the first episode Michiru mentions that she betrayed Ruka in some way...and in the previews it seems like Michiru still want to help Sousuke. As for the lady that was on the phone with Takeru, I think that it could either be his sister or a childhood friend. For now, I'm leaning towards sister.

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Post by sweetreset » Apr 27th, '08, 19:19

A lot of people have been guessing that Ruka is going to die, but at this point I'm thinking maybe not. The way they do those nostalgic reflections now and then, it sounds like they're being told after the events of the story. MIchiru, Takeru, and Ruka all narrate. Also, Michiru starts writing to Ruka in the first episode, right? I guess we don't know for sure, but that's what I'm thinking right now.
[/quote]
Maybe Ruka kills Sousuke to protect Michiru, and now she's in prison. I'm still not ruling out Ruka as the one that dies though. Just from the tenses in the subs, Takeru's and Michiru's reflections are definitely after the fact, but Ruka's aren't as clear. They could easily just be her reflections in the scene playing. Hers are more like letting us know her thoughts, while the others definitely refer to something.

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Post by lilswtangel » Apr 27th, '08, 20:47

But has anyone besides me noticed that Ruka might be ill?

What with her researching some sort of medical terminology that escapes my mind at the moment (all I know it's something like "urinology" or something like that).

And then the preview of episode four where it seems like the illness if affecting her.

So as much as I hope that it isn't her who died, it seems quite plausible that it was her.
@nouriko: you mean screencaps? you can actually take your own screencaps with a lot of different video players nowadays (BSPlayer/Media Player Classic, etc).
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Post by nouriko » Apr 27th, '08, 20:53

lilswtangel wrote:
But has anyone besides me noticed that Ruka might be ill?

What with her researching some sort of medical terminology that escapes my mind at the moment (all I know it's something like "urinology" or something like that).

And then the preview of episode four where it seems like the illness if affecting her.

So as much as I hope that it isn't her who died, it seems quite plausible that it was her.
@nouriko: you mean screencaps? you can actually take your own screencaps with a lot of different video players nowadays (BSPlayer/Media Player Classic, etc).
hi! no i mean like studio(??) photos of them :D thanks
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Post by sweetreset » Apr 27th, '08, 21:07

[quote="lilswtangel"]
But has anyone besides me noticed that Ruka might be ill?

What with her researching some sort of medical terminology that escapes my mind at the moment (all I know it's something like "urinology" or something like that).

And then the preview of episode four where it seems like the illness if affecting her.

So as much as I hope that it isn't her who died, it seems quite plausible that it was her.
i think that medical stuff was to tell us that she wanted a sex change.

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Post by lilswtangel » Apr 27th, '08, 21:12

^
Akira SHOCK*

I knew I should have googled the term once I saw the English translation. ^^;;
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Post by Tomi » Apr 27th, '08, 21:25

I don't think she actually wants a sex change, because she's mentioned a few times (like when she was talking about motocross) how gender just kind of disappears and it doesn't matter if you're a guy or a girl at that point. Maybe she has cancer. O.O

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Post by Tatsuri » Apr 27th, '08, 23:36

-new to the thread-
I agree with the Ruka might have cancer thing. If you notice when she is in the locker room after she finishes her practice, when she looks in the mirror she tends to stare at her chest slighty. She stands there topless and looks in the mirror. I'm guess that if she has some sort of illness it might be cancer.
Also
I notice a lot of people were talking about the RukaMichiru pairing or the Takera Michiru pairing and were using those mugs/cups as some sort of clue. It's true that Ruka bought a cup, and Takeru end up with the cup, but didn't Michiru buy a similar cup as well. Remember Ruka first saw her again in a mug shop.
I'm not to sure if Ruka is the one that dies in the end, but I have a feeling she might. The story is told by MIchiru and you have Takeru's input as well as Ruka's but in Episode 3 at the very end when Michiru came to the share house after the fight, Takeru was saying how he could tell that Ruka would do anything to protect Michiru, even if it killed her. Yet, in episode 2, I think it was 2, when Ruka was narrating, she mentioned that Michiru had not clue how she felt about her at that time. That kind of suggests Ruka does live.

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Post by ponderous » Apr 28th, '08, 00:02

Tomi wrote:
lilswtangel wrote:
josean06 wrote:we need to take another look at the Takeru/Michiru relationship
I guess we can't totally rule out Takeru's and Michiru's relationship. But with all honesty, I truly believe Sousuke to be the father of Michiru's baby.

Michiru herself has admitted as much when she mentioned that in her life, she has two treasures: 1) Sousuke 2) Ruka.

Plus, with Takeru's sexual ambiguity or rather his genophobia (since we have established that he has feelings for Ruka), it's kind of hard for me to imagine him getting over his sexual fears/frustrations and being able to father a baby after so many years of "agony".

After that phone call with the lady (whom I'm assuming is his mother?), I'm left wondering if he was possibly sexual abused as a child).

And also, his present voice narrates that Ruka has become special and important to him....so much as to have possibly fallen in love with her.
I also think that Sousuke is the father because in the first episode Michiru mentions that she betrayed Ruka in some way...and in the previews it seems like Michiru still want to help Sousuke. As for the lady that was on the phone with Takeru, I think that it could either be his sister or a childhood friend. For now, I'm leaning towards sister.
Can't be a blood relation because Takeru tells the person on the phone how they aren't connected anymore and to stop bothering him. Its possible that she's his ex-step-mother, childhood friend, or step-sister that sexually abused him when he was a child.

He seems to be under traumatic stress whenever women come on to him or he sees a strong sexual act. He obviously doesn't have a problem being near women or touching them since he's a hair and makeup artist. So he has no fear(phobia) of women, just the agony(traumatic stress syndrome) of his abuse. It would also explain why he's so attracted to Ruka; she's one of the few females to outwardly reject him.

I'm under the impression that the father of Michiru's baby is Takeru, simply based on the character relationshjp chart.
http://wiki.d-addicts.com/static/images ... _chart.PNG
A one way arrow with a heart, possibly signifying that Michiru is the bearer of his child.

She probably thinks she betrayed Ruka because she rejected Ruka's feelings for her. Its possible that no one dies at all, and Ruka and Michiru just can't ever go back to the way things were after finding out Ruka's secret. Its hard to stay friends with someone whom you think of as a friend, but whom they think of you as something more. Thats quite common, actually.

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Post by sweetreset » Apr 28th, '08, 00:41

[quote="Tatsuri"]-new to the thread-
I agree with the Ruka might have cancer thing. If you notice when she is in the locker room after she finishes her practice, when she looks in the mirror she tends to stare at her chest slighty. She stands there topless and looks in the mirror. I'm guess that if she has some sort of illness it might be cancer.

She could also be imagining herself w/o breasts, i.e. a man. I think a sex change fits more with the overall themes of the drama so far, which is concerned with homosexuality and gender identity. That part about gender identity disappearing, seems to me a way for the drama to sidestep a controversial relationship. I've noticed that a lot in dramas, where the gay/bi characters may have feelings for someone, but because it's an unacceptable relationship in the eyes of society, they take on a weird asexuality or androgyny. This drama seems to be taking some risks, in regards to DV and the Takeru/Ruka/Michiru love triangle. But they might wimp out and give her Ruka cancer instead, not uncommon in dramas.

I doubt she dies from cancer though. All the narration from the characters hints at something sinister. When Takeru interrupts the fight between Ruka/Michiru/Sosuke, he says something about that being 'foreboding of things to come'. Also the last line of Ep. 3, was Takeru, realizing that Ruka had decided to risk everything to protect Michiru. Unless that was a total red herring, it seems safe to say that whatever happens involves Ruka protecting Michiiru from Sosuke.

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Post by kerobu » Apr 28th, '08, 01:43

sweetreset wrote:
lilswtangel wrote:
But has anyone besides me noticed that Ruka might be ill?

What with her researching some sort of medical terminology that escapes my mind at the moment (all I know it's something like "urinology" or something like that).

And then the preview of episode four where it seems like the illness if affecting her.

So as much as I hope that it isn't her who died, it seems quite plausible that it was her.
i think that medical stuff was to tell us that she wanted a sex change.
here's my theory about who will die and about the medical terms Ruka was looking at:
I don't think that Ruka has a terminal illness... because on episode 1, michiru was wondering if the death would have been prevented if she knew how to read other people's feelings. Cancer, as suggested by others, is not preventable (yet) so I'm guessing that what happened is homicide. hehe. or that is how I want it to be. And I think that the one who will die would be either Sousuke or Ruka. I'm hoping for a Sousuke vs. Ruka death match. I thought, after watching the first episode, that Ruka might be the one who will die, but I'd rather have Sousuke killed by Ruka, that's why it's an either/or for me. Die, Sousuke!

And about the medical terms that Ruka was looking at in episode 2, I strongly agree that she wants to have a sex change... She was looking at the surgical operation procedure under the Urology Department. ("Urology is the branch of medicine that focuses on the urinary tracts of males and females, and on the reproductive system of males", Wikipedia) Also, on episode 3, her coach tells her that a man's average lap time is 2 seconds shorter than hers... and her coach asks her what she can do to reduce her lap time. Though, I don't get any relation between the reproductive system and shorter lap times... :scratch:

or maybe, just maybe, because Ruka was also looking at "gynecology", she might be pregnant and she doesn't want anyone to know about it so she will have an abortion... and again, maybe, that aborted baby was the death that could have been avoided. But that's a guess taken too far.

But I'm really leaning towards the sex change cause it's more possible that she would want to have it. And it would make the story more controversial. Ruka looked uneasy and unpleased with herself while she was looking at the mirror in the locker room. And if Ruka would really have a sex change, I wouldn't think she would be the father of Michiru's baby.
Last edited by kerobu on Apr 28th, '08, 04:04, edited 2 times in total.

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Post by Tomi » Apr 28th, '08, 03:44

kerobu wrote:
sweetreset wrote:
lilswtangel wrote:
But has anyone besides me noticed that Ruka might be ill?

What with her researching some sort of medical terminology that escapes my mind at the moment (all I know it's something like "urinology" or something like that).

And then the preview of episode four where it seems like the illness if affecting her.

So as much as I hope that it isn't her who died, it seems quite plausible that it was her.
i think that medical stuff was to tell us that she wanted a sex change.
here's my theory about who will die and about the medical terms Ruka was looking at:
I don't think that Ruka is ill... because on episode 1, michiru was wondering if the death would have been prevented if she knew how to read other people's feelings. Cancer is not preventable so I'm guessing that what happened is homicide. hehe. And I think that the one who will die would be either Sousuke or Ruka. I first thought that Ruka must be the one who dies, but I'd rather have Sousuke killed by Ruka, that's why it's an either/or for me. Die, Ryo! LOLZ!

But I'm really leaning towards the sex change cause it's more possible that she would want to have it. And it would make the story more controversial. And if Ruka will really have a sex change, I wouldn't think that she/he would be the father of Michiru's baby. =)
Oh yeah, the whole reading of others feeling thing...that's pretty important to consider. Very good point.
Wow! I don't think anyone has even considered that last possibility...that's also a very good point and it would probably make this drama the most controversial one ever created. Good thinking.

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Post by kerobu » Apr 28th, '08, 04:19

Tomi wrote:
kerobu wrote:
here's my theory about who will die and about the medical terms Ruka was looking at:
I don't think that Ruka is ill... because on episode 1, michiru was wondering if the death would have been prevented if she knew how to read other people's feelings. Cancer is not preventable so I'm guessing that what happened is homicide. hehe. And I think that the one who will die would be either Sousuke or Ruka. I first thought that Ruka must be the one who dies, but I'd rather have Sousuke killed by Ruka, that's why it's an either/or for me. Die, Ryo! LOLZ!

But I'm really leaning towards the sex change cause it's more possible that she would want to have it. And it would make the story more controversial. And if Ruka will really have a sex change, I wouldn't think that she/he would be the father of Michiru's baby. =)
Oh yeah, the whole reading of others feeling thing...that's pretty important to consider. Very good point.
Wow! I don't think anyone has even considered that last possibility...that's also a very good point and it would probably make this drama the most controversial one ever created. Good thinking.
Yes, my friend, it will be very controversial but I really don't think it is possible. It just randomly popped into my mind and I don't even believe it, unless there is already clinical data about the possibility of it happening. Is there? Will it be possible? :blink I have no idea. But if it could really happen and the flow of the story will go to that direction, then I might agree with you that this drama would be the most controversial one ever created.
But for now, I don't think Michiru will ever like Ruka more than a friend. That's the vibe I'm getting from Michiru.

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Post by lilswtangel » Apr 28th, '08, 04:42

I know we're getting off-topic......but hey what the heck..:)

Transmen (female to male sex change) can neither ejaculate sperm nor can they impregnate women so the possibility of Ruka being the father if she had a sex change is zilch~

Even if externally, she has become a man, she still would not have the internal organs of a man
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Post by zeiroc » Apr 28th, '08, 06:14

Wow...more folks joining this thread.
Tatsuri wrote:-new to the thread-
I notice a lot of people were talking about the RukaMichiru pairing or the Takera Michiru pairing and were using those mugs/cups as some sort of clue. It's true that Ruka bought a cup, and Takeru end up with the cup, but didn't Michiru buy a similar cup as well. Remember Ruka first saw her again in a mug shop.
Okay, crazy cup obsessed lady speaking...why would Michiru purchase a mug when she got one from lover boy for her birthday? Wouldn't you think she'd get another round of beating from Mr. Creep? It's not really a mug shop, but a household items/furnishing shop.
kerobu wrote:
Also, on episode 3, her coach tells her that a man's average lap time is 2 seconds shorter than hers... and her coach asks her what she can do to reduce her lap time. Though, I don't get any relation between the reproductive system and shorter lap times... scratch
It actually has no relation to the improvement of a lap time. It was a play on words from the awesome writing to throw us off. Hence, the next scene shows Ruka working out. Motorcross may just be about riding a dirt bike, but it has everything to do with physical strength and agility. The lap times are wholly affected by the turns and leaps in the air.

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Post by ruka_michiru » Apr 28th, '08, 11:28

This is just an amazing drama. It's so dark, intriguing, compelling and radical. Just the opening would make you hooked. I think that's the best I've ever seen so far. And the theme song suits perfectly to the drama... The best thing I like in this is, they (the writers) use so much "symbolism". One has to "read beteween the lines" in order to understand what's really happening; sometimes its misleading too. I'm really excited how this would end... Starting the story in the end is a very clever thing to do, it leads the viewers wondering.

I'm late with posting, so I'll start with what I think of Epi1...
"Understanding people is really difficult. I think so even now. If I had the ability, to understand people's hearts...If, at least, I could have put more strength in doing that, I wonder if that terrible incident, that death, could have been avoided." We all knew that Michiru's childhood was not that pleasant compared to Ruka's. With an alcoholic father and a battered mother, I don't know either if Michiru could understand other people's hearts. But it's sad that she'd just realized this weakness of her just now... And with regards to that terrible incident, that death, well, if we all gonna take it literally, it'll mean Ruka's death, right? But could it be, that Michiru is reffering to "the death of their friendship"?

Michiru was narrating that she betrayed Ruka...perhaps by way of going back to Mr. DV, even after all the times Ruka tried to protect her from him? Could this be the betrayal she's talking about and that terrible incident? Michiru was shown writing a letter to Ruka, maybe, she was trying to ask forgiveness from Ruka, but didn't know how to express herself, that's why she tear it off?

Oh, and I did notice right away that Michiru is using a matching mug like Ruka's (and Takeru's), maybe Ruka gave it to her when she stayed in their house. I think these mugs symbolizes something about Ruka/Takeru and Ruka/ Michiru's fate. Maybe Ruka doesn't want the others to think that she and Takeru may have some "thing" soon (basing on Ruka's reaction in Epi3 when she found out that Takeru still kept the mug), and maybe, the only person she wants to have a matching mug is Michiru... and I'm not just talking about mugs in here :P

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Post by ^Yuuki » Apr 28th, '08, 13:57

It seems that a lot doesn't read the past threads eh? Don't blame you guys because it's getting hella long~ So I'll just quote again the reason 'that death' isn't Ruka's.
1) Michiru starts with asking how Ruka's doing.
2) This is the 2nd time I'VE disappeared from your sight(anata no me no mae kara). Right, not the other way around. Which means she's neither dead nor in prison. (I'm hoping for a 2nd reunion then)
3) "We probably won't be able to meet again, will we, Ruka? But it can't be helped. Because I betrayed you." If she's dead, the problem would be bigger than because she betrayed her...it will be "Because you're no longer in this world..." or perhaps "Because you're in prison"(which I don't think so either).
4) "How's the sky over there?" Would be a weird thing to ask someone who is dead but if you think that Michiru is writing metaphorically to a dead person...it will be insensitive of her to assume that there is a sky 'over there'. Lol.
5) Michiru has been talking/writing to Ruka the whole time. She used "that death" instead of "your death" when talking about the incident. They purposely focus on Ruka in the picture at that moment to make us think that Ruka could be the one that died. So don't be fooled...
6) They've been giving out too much hint to make us think that it's Ruka. It's a ploy to throw us off the trail from the real victim.
7) It's Ueno Juri we're talking about. They can't let her character die. No~ >_<
michiru was wondering if the death would have been prevented if she knew how to read other people's feelings.
This is another good point. It'll be a crime of passion. Not because of something like terminal illness...

crazy cup obsessed lady: Heheh. Yeah, the pink 'house' cup, they probably got it for her when so moved in officially? (means she won't be going back to Sosuke so hell yeah)
It actually has no relation to the improvement of a lap time. It was a play on words from the awesome writing to throw us off. Hence, the next scene shows Ruka working out. Motorcross may just be about riding a dirt bike, but it has everything to do with physical strength and agility. The lap times are wholly affected by the turns and leaps in the air.
Btw, I noticed something interesting on Ruka's t-shirt while she was working out. "We are an impossibility in an impossible world". Ooh, is that a hint?? Haha, add that to the -tshirt with wings at the end of the ep...means I've gotta really pay attention to what she's wearing. =3
Last edited by ^Yuuki on Apr 28th, '08, 17:03, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by sleepyzzz » Apr 28th, '08, 16:00

^Yuuki wrote: Btw, I noticed something interesting on Ruka's t-shirt while she was working out. "We are an impossibility in an impossible world". Ooh, is that a hint?? Haha, add that to the -tshirt with wings at the end of the ep...means I've gotta really pay attention to what she's wearing. =3

@^Yuuki: I usually look forward to your comments as you often make some good inferences/spots but this one's just crazy! haha I've watched the episode a number of times and never saw it. Wow - we really need to keep our eyes open.

Btw, now that I think about it again, I'm desperately hoping the baby's not Takeru's. Honestly, he likes Ruka and he's also aware of what Ruka thinks of Michiru. For him to be the father would be another betrayal!?!! It's kind of out of his character too...*sigh* I'm crossing my fingers. I'd rather the baby be Sousuke but that's pretty crap too...
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Another crazy theory

Post by Mantaray » Apr 28th, '08, 16:19

Hey..I am another Newbie here as well. As being a fan of LF, I'd like to join your discussion and share some my POV.
About the past of Sousuke, I think several people here had indicated some points about it, esp. how lack of trust he was. But did anyone notice the word 'promise' he always use when he want someone to follow his order? I guess that he may not have all the precious things due to broken promises. That's why he always asked for it. In order to show his indignant feeling, he will hurt himself to call for someone's attention. However, since he become stronger and has more power in his adulthood, he turn himself from victim to be perpetrator and try to work as a social official to protect the weak at the same time.

So far I agreed with other friends here that Ruka will not be killed at the end of the show. Still she needs to cry and fight for the liberation of love and gender in this society. But who know at the end where will she be?

For Takeru, I agreed with your guys that the lady who called should be his sister, perhaps in law one. To be loved without your enjoyment and consent may imply as to be abused. That's why he loves to have a person who give him a space and sincere friendship at the beginning of their relationship. Nevertheless, his kindness and gentleman will attract many women, even his two housemates whom he doesn't want to share his wavelength. He has to endure with his agony that he want to let out this secret with Ruka. The only girl who is frank, open-mind and strong enough to support him when he needs help. But he can't be with her because a big mistake he may do in the future (a father of Michiru's child?? my crazy theory..)

About Michiru, as an innocent middle school girl she may not be able to identify the difference between love and caring of best friend and love and caring of adult love. Being brought up in the DV and broken family is a key reason why she stucked with Sousuke. Her betrayal with Ruka ('s love) may come from both Sousuke and Takeru. Since she doesn't realise her love and will fall in love with Takeru and being pregnant with Takeru (I guess!), she decided to run away from Ruka and punish herself by cutting off all connection and support she has.

Eri story should come soon, I believe. Because she is another key person in this chain of love.

What I want to see the most is Takeru/Souseke make Michiru pregnant. One of them will kill the other and been sent to jail. Michiru feel guilty and run away from the shared house. But Ruka will finally find her and take back to Tokyo. They will stay together with other friends and forgive all the mistakes and begin their life together again. So their friendship will be last long forever. Haha..sorry for this long blah blah... Anyway, I can't wait to see episode 4.
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Post by sleepyzzz » Apr 28th, '08, 16:19

Btw, if people know where we can get those mugs, pls let me know. The Fuji online shop only delivers within Japan! Yeah I'm pretty obsessed too....LOL Oh & I'm in HK btw...
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Post by ^Yuuki » Apr 28th, '08, 17:15

sleepyzzz wrote:^Yuuki wrote: Btw, I noticed something interesting on Ruka's t-shirt while she was working out. "We are an impossibility in an impossible world". Ooh, is that a hint?? Haha, add that to the -tshirt with wings at the end of the ep...means I've gotta really pay attention to what she's wearing. =3

@^Yuuki: I usually look forward to your comments as you often make some good inferences/spots but this one's just crazy! haha I've watched the episode a number of times and never saw it. Wow - we really need to keep our eyes open.
Haha. Guess what? I went back to see if there's anymore 'message on a shirt' thing with Ruka. In the restaurant scene, she was wearing a t-shirt with the big no.2 at the back. And Michiru kinda just chose Sousuke over her then. But she manage to get the no.1 spot back. During the card scene, the last card Ruka drew to win was the Ace of Hearts~ Yep, probably just coincidence eh? Haha. :mrgreen:
Btw, if people know where we can get those mugs, pls let me know. The Fuji online shop only delivers within Japan! Yeah I'm pretty obsessed too....LOL Oh & I'm in HK btw...
Get someone who lives in Japan to help? Hmm, so it's sold online only? Not in shops or anything?

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Post by OceanBreeze20 » Apr 28th, '08, 21:37

About why the death isn't Ruka...when i was watching episode one, i did notice the way Michiru talked about Ruka. I kept on thinking that Ruka is not the one who dies but after two episode it threw me off and i didn't know what to think anymore. I really don't want Ruka to die but i guess we will never know until the end. The writer really know how to work the viewers lol

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Post by <3s-tei. » Apr 28th, '08, 22:51

Just finished episode 3.

Seriously, there isn't another drama I've ever seen that had me at the edge of my seat before like this. My jaw's dropped through half of the show, Ryou's scares me every minute he's on screen, and I'm starting to fear for Ruka's life now.
Saw the preview for the next episode, Sousuke's not backing down it seems. But at least Michiru's secret is out so she can get protection. I could not bear it anymore seeing her get abused. It's quite painful.

I'm actually starting to think the death is Ruka's, cause Takeru did narrate at the end that "you decided then didn't you [Ruka], that you'd give your life to protect Michiru." But ^Yuuki did point out that Michiru begun first episode "writing" to Ruka... So that is probably wrong..
I've become frightened whenever I watch this show, but I cannot deny that it is a really good one. Not really looking forward to the next one cause it scares me... But I know I'll probably end up watching it anyway...
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Post by LoveWillB4U » Apr 28th, '08, 23:17

just watched ep 3... this show is so painful to watch. great acting, great show but so painful to watch. the last drama i watched that was this painful was... okay just looked at the list of all the dramas i've watched and none even came close. (I've watched 81 Full dramas, i'm sure some of you have topped 100 but 81 isn't a small number) I believe this drama has the potential to be the best overall drama of the year.

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Post by atskv9 » Apr 29th, '08, 02:31

Not sure if anyone has seen today's HEYx3 but one of the hosts made a joke about Ryo and DV after hitting him on the head. Ahh, felt great to know what the heck they were referring to for once when I don't even understand the language :lol

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Post by QNSpider » Apr 29th, '08, 02:58

I still think it could be someone unexpected like Ogura-san or Eri. JDrama = twists
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Post by Tomi » Apr 29th, '08, 04:01

So...again after more thought, I'm starting to think again that Ruka is not going to be the one killed because some of you guys mentioned in the thread that maybe Michiru was merely running away and cutting off connections with Ruka because of something she might have done to betray Ruka (possibly falling in love with Takeru and bearing a child?)...or maybe by saying "how is the sky over there?"...maybe she means that Ruka has become a pro-motocross rider and Ruka is traveling/racing. Just a theory...

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Post by QNSpider » Apr 29th, '08, 04:42

Tomi wrote:So...again after more thought, I'm starting to think again that Ruka is not going to be the one killed because some of you guys mentioned in the thread that maybe Michiru was merely running away and cutting off connections with Ruka because of something she might have done to betray Ruka (possibly falling in love with Takeru and bearing a child?)...or maybe by saying "how is the sky over there?"...maybe she means that Ruka has become a pro-motocross rider and Ruka is traveling/racing. Just a theory...
^ That's true. I agree with that theory. But I actually think she was raped though, by Sosuke.
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Post by kerobu » Apr 29th, '08, 05:13

^Yuuki wrote:It seems that a lot doesn't read the past threads eh? Don't blame you guys because it's getting hella long~ So I'll just quote again the reason 'that death' isn't Ruka's.
1) Michiru starts with asking how Ruka's doing.
2) This is the 2nd time I'VE disappeared from your sight(anata no me no mae kara). Right, not the other way around. Which means she's neither dead nor in prison. (I'm hoping for a 2nd reunion then)
3) "We probably won't be able to meet again, will we, Ruka? But it can't be helped. Because I betrayed you." If she's dead, the problem would be bigger than because she betrayed her...it will be "Because you're no longer in this world..." or perhaps "Because you're in prison"(which I don't think so either).
4) "How's the sky over there?" Would be a weird thing to ask someone who is dead but if you think that Michiru is writing metaphorically to a dead person...it will be insensitive of her to assume that there is a sky 'over there'. Lol.
5) Michiru has been talking/writing to Ruka the whole time. She used "that death" instead of "your death" when talking about the incident. They purposely focus on Ruka in the picture at that moment to make us think that Ruka could be the one that died. So don't be fooled...
6) They've been giving out too much hint to make us think that it's Ruka. It's a ploy to throw us off the trail from the real victim.
7) It's Ueno Juri we're talking about. They can't let her character die. No~ >_<
michiru was wondering if the death would have been prevented if she knew how to read other people's feelings.
This is another good point. It'll be a crime of passion. Not because of something like terminal illness...
Nice summary. I totally missed considering numbers 2 and 7. Thanks to you, now I believe that death isn't Ruka's. The screen writer really knows how to get his audience hooked and think about crazy ideas. Bravo! :salut:

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Post by GoddessCarlie » Apr 29th, '08, 09:03

I don't want to read the rest of the thread at the moment because I'm an episode behind, but how powerful is this show?! It is awesome. I believe this will go down as one of the best dramas out there.
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Post by scherzando » Apr 29th, '08, 12:44

God I lurve this thread.
lilswtangel wrote:Akira SHOCK*
LOL!! Yay to Shuuji and Akira! :P

Hmm.. thoughts..:
I don't know about the cancer thing and stuff, but I surely think (and hope) that the death which will probably happen in the end won't be caused by an illness.

About the sex change thing, I can believe and understand that Ruka's thinking about having it, however I doubt that she'll actually do it.

Hey crazy cup obsessed lady, you're doing a great job hahahaha.. your cup theory was the first thing that made me realize that we should really, as ruka_michiru said before, read between the lines. (after reading your first cup theory post, I immediately re-watched the first ep's opening scene and then screamed "THE CUP!!" hahaha) And now we have to pay attention to the shirts also! lol. Gotta admit I have no idea about the "We are an impossibility in an impossible world" stuff. Man.. have to rewatch everything again for the 186th time now. :P
^Yuuki wrote:7) It's Ueno Juri we're talking about. They can't let her character die. No~ >_<
LOL. Agree!

I sure hope the baby isn't Takeru's. The idea of Takeru/Michiru is just.. yadaaaa!

On a side note, I love Ruka's expression during ep3's last scene. She was so broken hearted, so confused, so angry, so worried and so sad.. Her face said everything. OMG JURI YOU DA MAN.

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Post by lilswtangel » Apr 29th, '08, 14:56

QNSpider wrote:^ That's true. I agree with that theory. But I actually think she was raped though, by Sosuke.
*eeekkkkk* I'll be horrified and utterly shocked if that was to happen.....but I really wouldn't rule it out because that would be the perfect revenge on Sosuke's part. Who knows what Domestic Violence can lead to if left untreated.
There seems to be a lot of action in episode 4. We actually might see Ogura-san confronting his cheating wife! Now that's something!

What I really wish is that they would start unraveling Eri's story. No one has any clue on why her theme is isolation and what her background is except for the fact that she is alienated at work.

Ruka = a closeted lesbian who is secretly but deeply in love with her best friend with whom she is also very protective of. She also appears to be ill (still is undetermined) and can motorcross better than your average man. (I didn't want to label her as a "lesbian" because she is so much more than just that...)

Michiru = comes from a troubled childhood (or rather from a family with an abusive father and nonchalant mother who cares more about her own affairs than those of her daughter's). Is at the moment in love with her boyfriend (who unfortunately has DV) but is stuck in the middle between him and her best friend. She is cruelly treated at work by a fellow co-worker (possibly a senpai) and but still has dreams to become a great hairstylist. However that dream seems dim at the moment because in order to appease her boyfriend, she sacrifices her work time by getting off a set time and is unwilling to cut men's hair.

Sosuke = a contradiction to his very image. A welfare employee who works in the Abused/Neglected Children Division but ironically becomes a victim to domestic violence and ends up beating his girlfriend. Very possessive and easily angered & jealous when his DV takes precedence or triggered. But when calm, he is very loving and thoughtful.

Takeru = might have been a victim of sexual abuse for his past is still unknown at the moment. But it is certain that he fears the act of sex and a certain mystery woman (who we see once in episode 3) might be the reason for his agony or so he claims since he said he'll never forgive her. However afraid he is of sex, he isn't afraid of women and works as a make-up artist by day and a sometime bartender by night. For the time being, there are hints that he might fall in love with Ruka. Ends up moving in with her and her friends in their house.

Ogura-san = a docile and kind man but weak-willed who caught his wife cheating. Instead of confronting her, he moves out of their apartment which he brought and moves in with his co-worker and her roommate.

Eri = Ruka's roommate and Ogura-san's co-worker. Is friends with Takeru and ends up introducing them two of them (though they have actually already met twice prior to the formal introduction). Appears to be very friendly and outgoing but for some yet-to-be-revealed reason, she is alienated by her fellow flight attendant co-workers.......

So basically, Eri's story hasn't come into play yet.....and I'm eager to find out why she is ignored at work when she seems to be such a friendly person.
scherzando wrote:I sure hope the baby isn't Takeru's. The idea of Takeru/Michiru is just.. yadaaaa!
You took the words right out of my mouth. :)
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Post by ^Yuuki » Apr 29th, '08, 16:25

LoveWillB4U wrote:just watched ep 3... this show is so painful to watch. great acting, great show but so painful to watch. the last drama i watched that was this painful was... okay just looked at the list of all the dramas i've watched and none even came close. (I've watched 81 Full dramas, i'm sure some of you have topped 100 but 81 isn't a small number) I believe this drama has the potential to be the best overall drama of the year.
Yeah, I wouldn't call it the most enjoyable JDrama I've seen(that would go to Nodame) but it is definitely the most awesome one. The fact that it can make us feel that much makes it great even though it's mostly painful to watch so far. But you're a prisoner once you start watching...
Gotta admit I have no idea about the "We are an impossibility in an impossible world" stuff. Man.. have to rewatch everything again for the 186th time now.
Oops. It's actually 'universe' instead of 'world'. :P
About the card game,
if you guys don't already realize, it's actually a metaphor of 'Ruka vs Sousuke' being overlapped with the Michiru/Sousuke confrontation. Whenever the conversation between them goes Ruka's way, she gets a good card. Then when Sousuke retaliated with 'she's not a woman', Ruka got the joker(oldmaid). But she won at the end. Er, not oldmaid? Haha. =)
And it's interesting that when Sousuke said
"She's been targeting you since then!", Michiru didn't deny or said that it's a lie. She just said "Stop it"(don's say anymore). I think she does realize just a little about Ruka's feelings(but is in denial?). Didn't she find it weird when Ruka says MY Michiru? And Ruka in a roundabout way, confessed to her during the ferris wheel/harbour scene:
Ruka: Happiness as well is for each person respectively. I am at extreme happiness when I get on my bike. Even if because of it I get injured...I get hurt..or it gets hard, I can endure it. My dad..my old man understands that, so, even if I have an accident with my bike he doesn't complain. He doesn't tell me to stop, rather keeps watching over me. That's what love is, don't you think?
Michiru: I do.
Ruka: Michiru, you too..when you're with your boyfriend, even if it's painful you're happy, right? If so then I won't complain. (because it's what love is...)
Michiru: Thank you, Ruka.
That's it? Thank you and be my friend?? Poor Ruka. Lol. But she make it up with 'My Ruka' at the end. Kinda a stupid move on her part though I applauded at it. Like she already knew what would happen if she says it but does it anyway. Makes you wonder how their relationship was like in high school...
...But wonder no more cause they'll be telling it all in the manga version! Should be about how Ruka and Michiru met and become friends. I think it was released just yesterday. Keep an eye out for it. ^^

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Post by bmwracer » Apr 29th, '08, 16:52

^Yuuki wrote:Yeah, I wouldn't call it the most enjoyable JDrama I've seen(that would go to Nodame) but it is definitely the most awesome one.
I agree... This drama has been pretty good so far, but I doubt it's one you can watch over and over again...

Nodame, on the other hand, is easily re-watchable... Which is why I've seen it nearly 20 times... LOL.
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Post by bobodybob » Apr 29th, '08, 16:53

I had to come and post in this thread, because I am actually obsessed with this drama. Ive watched each episode countless times and I am supposed to be revising for finals, its driving me crazy!

Referring to the mugs, I found the bowls Michiru bought herself and Souske in London the other week, before the show was aired. I nearly bought them actually as I was shopping for rice bowls. *Akria SHOCK*
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Post by ^Yuuki » Apr 29th, '08, 17:05

Nodame, on the other hand, is easily re-watchable... Which is why I've seen it nearly 20 times... LOL.
Yeap~ These 2 are like opposites of the spectrum but both are equally great in their own world. I think watching 1 episode of Last Friends, then 1 episode of Nodame would be a nice balance. Haha. And both have got the awesome Ueno Juri. =3

Utada Hikaru comments about Prisoner of Love:
Ooh, looks like it was created without her even knowing what the story is about yet. So she just wrote it so that it can be talking about either friendship or love. Good call. And it's so weird that it totally fits the drama if she doesn't know about the story beforehand. Maybe it's the drama that's trying to fit the theme of the song? Haha. Plus, she created it in English version first and had trouble converting it to be sung in Japanese. Wah, I'd like to hear the English version! =D

Some pretty good MVs(practically Ruka/Michiru though):


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Post by bmwracer » Apr 29th, '08, 17:21

^Yuuki wrote:
Nodame, on the other hand, is easily re-watchable... Which is why I've seen it nearly 20 times... LOL.
Yeap~ These 2 are like opposites of the spectrum but both are equally great in their own world. I think watching 1 episode of Last Friends, then 1 episode of Nodame would be a nice balance. Haha. And both have got the awesome Ueno Juri. =3
True.

But I don't think I could watch Last Friends a second time without a reasonably long break in between... It obviously doesn't have the joy, enthusiasm, and fun of a Nodame.
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Post by QNSpider » Apr 29th, '08, 20:09

There will be twists...twists I tell 'ya. Don't hold your breath. It could be ANYONE. But I highly doubt Ruka will be the victim. Mark my words.
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Post by Tomi » Apr 29th, '08, 20:50

I think it's rewatchable...maybe. I've watched each episode at least three times (I know, I'm obsessed haha)...

I'm really hoping that the kid is not Takeru's...(yaaadaa lol) so maybe by putting that heart on the chart, the writers are trying to trick us? I hope so...
About the card game,

if you guys don't already realize, it's actually a metaphor of 'Ruka vs Sousuke' being overlapped with the Michiru/Sousuke confrontation. Whenever the conversation between them goes Ruka's way, she gets a good card. Then when Sousuke retaliated with 'she's not a woman', Ruka got the joker(oldmaid). But she won at the end. Er, not oldmaid? Haha. =)
Ooh, very good observation...to me, it seems like Michiru might have some hidden feelings for Ruka that she herself probably doesn't even know about yet. In episode 3 when she finds herself telling Ruka in the middle of the night that she wants to see her. Also, the whole "my ruka/my michiru" thing. And even when Sousuke brings it up when they are quarreling and Michiru really doesn't seem to deny the fact that she might know that Ruka has feelings for her.
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Post by shineox » Apr 29th, '08, 21:41

I love this drama..its so painful to watch sometimes though.

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Post by scherzando » Apr 29th, '08, 22:21

^Yuuki wrote:...But wonder no more cause they'll be telling it all in the manga version!
Manga? For real?

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Post by Hikaria » Apr 29th, '08, 23:27

Wow, have I been enjoying this series... but also, I've been missing so much of the -between the lines- that's written in it.

Luckily today, call it fate or what have you, the servers at my work all have gone done until probably tomorrow, so that leaves me much time to read up in the forums :) What can I say, I'm a lurker by nature ^^ So read I did... this -entire- thread. Took a while, but I'm now caught up.

So, thanks everyone for your wonderful insights... I'm reading so much more into this story than before, and I like it even more now!

Anyway, a few of my thoughts about the first three episodes just from the top of my head... hopefully it adds something to this topic :)
About the possible death that is mentioned at the beginning, I'm really not sure, but I was thinking maybe it's Ruka, because she's supposed to be sick (that's just my guess from the website she was reading. I'm not sure what would make her sick, because I was thinking breast cancer, because she tends to stare at her self in the mirror when she is changing, but that's nothing to do with urology, so I don't know...

And the thing that was mentioned how her voice overs aren't necessarily from the future-tense makes me think that it's maybe that too.

The idea that sort of stuck in my mind was that Ruka knew she was sick (because of the 'second opinion' thing she was reading, but she didn't want to get the treatment, because it would take her away from Michiru. And since Michiru was saying something along the lines of... 'if I could have seen more of the feelings from my friends, the death wouldn't have happened.' so I was thinking if she saw the pain Ruka was in, and noticed she was sick, then she would have helped her and got her the treatment she needed to save her, but when she noticed it was too late.

I don't know... that could be far fetched, but it's what came to mind when I was reading through all these posts.

---

With the idea of the cups (that really fascinates me too) I was thinking that the broken cup that was Ruka's that later becomes Takeru's is sort of like Ruka gives Takeru the cup (be it in a round about way), so now Takeru gets feelings for Ruka, the giver of the cup. That sort of works like how Sosuke gave Michiru the cup, and then Michiru gets stronger feelings for Sosuke, the giver of that cup.

So, I was thinking, with the way that the line from Michiru to Takeru has a heart in the connections picture, then it means that Michiru was given that other cup (the matching one to Ruka/Takeru), by Takeru, because then it means that her feelings will change and she will start to like this new person (Takeru) that gave her the latest cup.
Okay, sorry if my post seems all unclear, I couldn't find a better way to write it and I'm confusing myself too. I hope it makes some sense. Anyway, since I have a while that I can't be doing work, I'm going to re-watch the episodes again, and see if I can pick up on anything else, or get some new ideas.

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Post by GoddessCarlie » Apr 29th, '08, 23:53

I have to search back and find the cup theories. I have one of my own, so I want to see if our theories are similar!

I think this drama is very watchable. I think a show is a success if it stirs some kind of emotion. That's why I don't like horrors - because I never feel frightened in them, and if I do jump it often feels "cheap" because it's from a sudden loud noise.

However, if the feeling is stemmed from a character, whether it be something funny, or I can feel the tension of their love, or if I feel their pain, then to me that is a good show. And in this show, I can feel the pain, I can understand the pain, it really resonates with me. I feel like I could watch this show over and over, and still feel something from it. That is why I watch shows - to feel something.
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Post by ruka_michiru » Apr 30th, '08, 00:16

Here’s what I thought about epi3:
Takeru: “I would never do that kind of thing. Even if the hitter may be doing it without much thought, for the victim, it leaves wounds that are there for a lifetime. Violence that wears the mask of love, is the worst kind there is.”

Could he be telling this based on his own experience? Hmmmm…

Michiru: I never felt like… I was ever loved by anyone until now. Not even from my dad, or my mom. But… with Sousuke, I feel loved (WTF?!) Of coarse, Sousuke can be extreme sometimes, but he’s always, looking after me (and did I mention hitting?!)

I feel so sorry for Ruka in this scene, not only did Michiru tried to protect Sousuke’s image, but had also forgotten the love and care that Ruka is giving her. Sometimes it’s so sad that one cannot appreciate and see the love that was already right under her nose…

Although I find Michiru a bit insensitive and “blind”, I really like the scene where she called Ruka. She looks like a girl who’s talking to her crush on the phone. And how I love it when she sweetly uttered “Ruka”, it sounded like an endearment. I’m just glad that they met and was able to talk.

Sousuke: "She’s (Ruka) been eyeing you since then!"

You got that right!

Okay seriously, Mr. DV feels threatened by Ruka, that’s why he keeps on saying bad things about her. He knows that Ruka “could” be a potential rival when it comes to Michiru’s love. The sad thing is, Michiru doesn’t have a single clue about Ruka’s feelings towards her.

“When provoked, that’s where the real feelings come out?”

Ruka (from epi2): “Don’t touch my Michiru!”

Michiru: “I thought I could endure anything, but this time, I won’t. When it comes to my Ruka… stop saying such horrible things!”


I don’t know if someone noticed it, but the preview from epi2, after Ruka shouted
“Don’t touch my Michiru!”
I think the camera caught more of Michiru’s facial expression and how she suddenly realized something that wasn’t there before, had surprisingly made a guest appearance.

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Post by Hikaria » Apr 30th, '08, 00:31

I think a show is a success if it stirs some kind of emotion.
Yes, the emotions I feel while watching is what has got me thinking differently about this show than the other's that I've watched. It's this raw emotion that's kept me wanting more. I feel like I need to see how things are going to turn out because after sitting through some of those scenes, it feels like I need resolution to make it all sit okay with me... My mind wants to know how it will all turn out, because it's invested such emotions into the series already.

One of the big things is that...
I've never seen DV look so 'harshly real' as I have in this series. It really hits home when you see it for what it is... something horrible, something painful (both mental and physical pain), something not the least bit glamorous.

Usually when there's violence on television, it's just so common that I've almost become accustomed to it. Like I've seen it many times before, so it's not shocking, and it doesn't really phase me one way or the other.

But this violence in this show really shocked me, and hurt just to watch. I was actually really finding it hard to sit though because it seemed too real, and real is scary. It's not like what I'm used to seeing on the tv, so it really pains me to watch.

The worst is when you see a person that thinks that a DV love like that is the best that they can do, so they will suffer through the bad, just to cling onto the pieces of good.

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Post by Tatsuri » Apr 30th, '08, 00:56

Well...we still have 8 more episodes to go before everything is eventually unfolded.
But trying to figure out the plot based on clues like cups, shirts, cards, and other little things is fun.

I think a lot more might become clearer after episode 4. The story line seems like it will finally pick up and progress further.

This isn't the first show I've watched that displayed DV, although I haven't watched many, but this show makes me emotional because the characters are so close in age. If it is happening to someone like Michiru, who is a few years older than me, then there's a chance that I could become a Michiru (someones who is a victim of DV) or a Ruka (someone who watches her bestfriend suffer from DV, without he gay part). When I think about it, that's scary.
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Post by jigenbakuda » Apr 30th, '08, 01:05

Great post hikaria!

Well I heard some talk of maybe michiru knows ruka likes her and she is in denial.., I think not!

Well maybe I am just trying to sway you to thinking of my crackpot theory. WHY IN THE WORLD CAN'T MICHIRU BE BISEXUAL? Now sounds crazy, but hear me out. Lets see what we know. Michiru and ruka went to middle school together, michiru moved away for high school for unknown reason. We know that michiru has never denied any of sosuke's accusations about ruka liking her. We also know ruka, in the heat of the moment, refered to michiru as "her" michiru (If my homeboy called me his jigenbakuda, we might have to fight. ) Also we know michiru was abused as a child (how she was abused we don't know).

Now is it outside of the realm of reality that maybe michiru and ruka dated and or were lovers in middle school? Well they don't have middle school in japan, in the beginning of high school or end of elementary. Now if they were lovers it would explain ruka's possesiveness and her devotion to michiru. michiru's parents could of known of her relationship and punished/annoyed her because of it. Or worse the reason for michiru's moving might have been ruka :( Anyways I could come up with speculation upon speculation for hours. Lets move on. If anyone could findout info on michiru's past it would be sosuke. If he can aquire the yearbook, he knows where the school is. If he knows where the school is he can ask teachers about the two, or even ask other people in the yearbook, all under the guise of asking work related questions. So he could already know the history of the two girls. Sosuke never saw ruka and michiru together but he was asking her about her and saying ruka was basically a man. On the otherhand he saw takeru and michiru talking and smiling, but only was on him for a short while, then never brought him up again. Maybe he reseached takeru and deduced he was gay, and no longer worried about him. (every real fan knows takeru x ruka=HAWT! lol).

Uhm... last thing. Ruka's personality seems a little too strong for unrequited love. I think ruka would of confessed if she liked michiru.

Ah... so I expect people to ignore or shoot holes in my theory, but just trying to shake things up. This series seems too complicated to go with the simple answers, a twist is comming and its comming soon... what will it be???




P.S. I love juri-chan, jump on my juri bandwagon. Why has my opinion of masami-chan gone down from watching this drama?
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Post by Tatsuri » Apr 30th, '08, 01:10

P.S. I love juri-chan, jump on my juri bandwagon. Why has my opinion of masami-chan gone down from watching this drama?
Ehh.....because she's partnered with Juri and Juri is awesome.
Lately the characters Masami plays all have some similar aspect but Juri seems so diverse and it works.

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Post by gmak » Apr 30th, '08, 02:18

here's my take:
this drama is real. it covers issues that exist in society today. furthermore, the cast is extremely gifted and have been successful in portraying the many levels of the human emotion. this is the first drama that i've seen with a homosexual playing a major role, and it makes the plot even more interesting. the appearance of ruka doesn't really matter because her relationship with michiru doesn't seem to based solely on lust, but on pure and undying friendship. after all, the drama is called "last friends" so its obvious that the plot is based on friendship and love. i never thought i would ever watch this type of drama, but it is refreshing and quite addictive, in a good way of course. props to the all-star cast :thumright:

however, sousuke really pisses me off sometimes :cussing:

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Re: reply

Post by Jscorpio » Apr 30th, '08, 02:29

gmak wrote:here's my take:
this drama is real. it covers issues that exist in society today. furthermore, the cast is extremely gifted and have been successful in portraying the many levels of the human emotion. this is the first drama that i've seen with a homosexual playing a major role, and it makes the plot even more interesting. the appearance of ruka doesn't really matter because her relationship with michiru doesn't seem to based solely on lust, but on pure and undying friendship. after all, the drama is called "last friends" so its obvious that the plot is based on friendship and love. i never thought i would ever watch this type of drama, but it is refreshing and quite addictive, in a good way of course. props to the all-star cast :thumright:

however, sousuke really pisses me off sometimes :cussing:
I agree wholeheartedly with this.. Great post, mate!! :-)

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Post by sleepyzzz » Apr 30th, '08, 02:31

Woah people! I didn't look at this thread for a few hours (like only about 5 hours) and BANG! There's like 10 new entries! haha Everyone's getting very excited!

You are so right, ruka_michiru, on that "Don't touch my Michiru" scene!! In episode 3, they definitely caught my attention straight away!! I was like "what the hell was that?!?!" Rewatch!

The look on MIchiru's face was so asking for questions! There's definitely a very deep bond between them but I don't think Michiru realises the full extent of it. Please please!! When is Michiru going to realise!?!?

Just one more day to go....this is torture...
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Post by zeiroc » Apr 30th, '08, 05:08

scherzando wrote:God I lurve this thread.
Hey crazy cup obsessed lady, you're doing a great job hahahaha.. your cup theory was the first thing that made me realize that we should really, as ruka_michiru said before, read between the lines. (after reading your first cup theory post, I immediately re-watched the first ep's opening scene and then screamed "THE CUP!!" hahaha) And now we have to pay attention to the shirts also! lol.
Thank you for making my day! Ya'll just made me laugh...I think I shall have the new alias in this thread as the crazy cup obsessed lady :w00t: I just get so excited that at least some of ya'll recognize my cup theory. It really made my day. I certainly do enjoy these new and insightful observations, however it just gets really tiring...to re-read the same old observations in the newer posts. *hides from mean glares*

I mean don't get me wrong it is a tad bit extensive and crazy to read all the older posts/pages, especially when you have a very profound thought and just want to share it with everyone. Still, it's like a redundant circle, nonetheless I still welcome new folks joining in on this thread. I will just skim from now on. Still awesome to see more people interested in this drama despite the heavy and topics and visuals.

^Yuuki Thank you for sharing and summarizing Utada Hikaru's interview. Great job recognizing the shirts/clothing that Ruka wears. I think roon also noticed this too :thumright:

Hikaria I commend you for reading all the posts!! :salut: Awesome take! I can definitely see your observation on the cups and I must agree that the feelings will develop for those that are the "givers." I think this is one of those four personality trait in the psychology world. (Trying to brush up on that sophomore intro to psych class from college, which was 3 years ago).

GoddessCarlie If you're curious (or maybe you've read it already) I decided to make it easy for you to read up the cup thingy: ^Yuuki also has some interesting perspective (as well as many others) in it too.

Ojay....I guess that's my ramblings/response for the night. Just a few more days....peace vO

Hmmm...maybe we're just reading too much into this...then again it wouldn't be this much fun though.

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Post by Rinnetensei » Apr 30th, '08, 06:00

Ok, I've been reading this thread forever! Just wanna chime in to the poster who suggested that Ruka should have told Michiru her feelings by now.

Well, this is Japan we are talking about. I don't know how many of you live here, but I've been living here a little over 2 years. I also get the bonus of being a gay girl! Yay! Not at ALL! I feel quite stifled here, like I can't come out to the average Joe. And I've met a few Japanese who are OBVIOUSLY gay to me (and have inferred that) but they are not coming out. In fact they're dating the opposite sex and even getting married to them!

One of my friends is a bartender here. Her GF is engaged to a dude and, the last I heard, she was going through with the marriage.

I know how it feels to be a gay gaijin here, but to be gay Japanese? And a female? I'd rather die! Or learn English and get the hell out. I think you have to take into consideration the extent of Ruka's trouble. Overseas it may not be such a big deal to be out, but in Japan it's really unheard of.

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Post by Hikaria » Apr 30th, '08, 07:51

Okay, I've done some thinking here... and I'm starting to think that I'm crazy for going so deeply into the opening sequence... but I think I might be on to something. Just bare with me, and come to your own conclusion. I could just be nuts ;)

Anyway... I'll hide it, cause it's probably rampant with spoilers :P

POST WRITING EDIT: Sorry, that this is crazy long... feel free to just skim/skip all together lol...
So, the order in which the people are seen, seem to have some significance. To me at least ;) They always show up in the same order: Michiru -> Ruka -> Takeru -> Eri -> Sosuke.

From the little I know, it appears that each person 'likes' the preceding person. For example:

1. Michiru likes Sosuke... check, this is correct. (I had to revert back to the last name, because she was first in the list).

2. Ruka likes Michiru... check, this is correct.

3. Takeru likes Ruka... I'm going to say this is also correct, from the way it's been hinted in the series...

4. Eri likes Takeru? This I have no idea... so is pure speculation, but since I really know nothing about this character, it could be true? Mind you, she did apparently spend the night with Ogura (from what it showed in Ep 3 during the 'wake up to coffee' scene), so that might not work, but since he's not in the opening sequence, and this is my screwed up mind taking over, then whatever. I'll just run with it for now...

5. Sosuke likes Eri? Now this one is hard for me to believe, but I'm not really sure if his love for Michiru is real, or he's just in love with the idea of someone that will stay with him? (Because she's had a bad life and apparently thinks he's the best she can do) If Sosuke is only in love with the idea of not being alone... then pairing up with "solitude" might be good for the both of them... so long as he works out his issues first, and starts acting like a decent guy.

Okay, so that might have been pushing it a bit at the end, but since the pattern worked so well at the beginning, I thought, why not run with it, and see where it takes us?

---------------------

Next idea...

From the section where we first see them all walking solo, and coming through the curtains... I noticed a couple things worth mentioning.

1. Everyone is walking, except for Sosuke. Does that imply that everyone is pushing forward in their life and their problems, but he's stuck at a stand-still?
2. As the camera cuts away from each person, the only person to be "blurred out" is Ruka. Is this a foreshadow to her "fading away", ie. dying?

--------------------

Okay, and here goes another one of my 'order' predictions. I feel more and more crazy as I type this. Is anyone still reading by this points?

Anyway... this is what I was getting from the part where they were all passing through their "Love", "Liberation", "Agony", etc. for the 'sum-me-up-in-one-word' section.

1. Michiru ("Love"), cut to scene with Takeru and Ruka (in that order, from left to right of screen... I have a thing for order ;))

If you'd care to notice... that seems to follow the 'who loves who' order. Michiru -> Takeru -> Ruka. ie. Michiru likes Takeru (or so says the correlation chart with the heart going from her to him), and Takeru likes Ruka (or so it appears through his actions).

So, that first one works. Also, since Ruka, was the last in line, she's up next :)

2. Ruka ("Liberation"), cut to scene with Michiru and Takeru (again, left to right).

Same thing appears to work. Ruka -> Michiru -> Takeru. All like each other in that order (from what I've come to know anyway.)

Again, my last in line theory work... Takeru was last, so he's next in line...

3. Takeru ("Agony"), cut to scene with a 'mystery' person walking away from Eri (Again, left to right people!)

Now, this mystery person is not one of the people wearing a dress... so that gets rid of Michiru, and Eri (mind you, I didn't think Eri was walking away from herself... so yea :P). That leaves us with Ruka, Takeru, or Sosuke.

If it was Ruka... Then the order would be Takeru -> Ruka -> Eri...

Now, the Takeru liking Ruka thing works... but I don't see Ruka liking Eri... since she seems pretty hooked on Michiru. But you never know... Eri is also a member of the 'home team' so to speak, so it might make sense.

If the mystery person was Takeru... then it would be Takeru -> Takeru -> Eri...

That would just be silly... Takeru likes himself lol... (after all, he seems to have a phobia of relations with other people due to his past trauma, so -maybe-, but it's a stretch)... but then he'd also like Eri. Anything is possible, but I'm thinking not. Probably not lol... Two Takeru's might just confuse the matter lol...

If the mystery person was Sosuke... then it would be Takeru -> Sosuke -> Eri...

If I follow my theory of "A" likes "B" who likes "C", then that would be Takeru likes Sosuke... (I'm thinking so far, he doesn't have the best impression on the guy... knowing how he treats Michiru... so probably not going to happen, but if he -did- manage to change and become a good guy, then -maybe- seeing as Takeru does have that 'gay' image about himself... and the coveted "teletubbie purple" cup ;) I'm stretching it again, aren't I?), so and then Sosuke would have to like Eri... which I have no idea. It's possible, by the reasoning I came up with about 20,000 words ago.

The first two options are sounding a lot more plausible than this last one, but none of them in this segment sit quite right with me lol... anyway, moving on... Since Eri was last in line, she's next to go (at least one part of my ordering theory seems to be working out ;))

4. Eri ("Solitude"), cut to a Michiru/Sosuke scene. Eri -> Michiru -> Sosuke

Eri liking Michiru? It could happen, since I really don't know enough about Eri to prove it wrong... other than he 'one night' with Ogura. And we all know Michiru likes Sosuke... so that half definitely works.

Then since Sosuke was last... he's up next :)

5. Sosuke ("Contradiction"), cut to scene of everyone walking together and ignoring one another.

Wait? What... Sosuke doesn't get to have his own love path? Okay, that might make sense too, since I can't see him really loving anyone if he's going to get all DV on them. Mind you, he did have that white coffee cup with the black coffee spilling over just before he was shown. So that might a metaphor about the "badness" building up inside him, waiting to overflow once it hits the breaking point. (Again, am I reading too much into things?)

-----------------------------

I so feel like one of the too long/didn't read posts... sorry guys. Thanks if you have stuck with me this far :) Sorry if I'm just insane, and this all means nothing!

-------------------------------

Now, my last speculation is about the final shot with the 'red ribbon' that ties them to ones another. Call it the 'red line of fate' or whatever...

Ribbon 1: Comes from outside of the frame, twists around Eri's wrist, and then once again leaves the frame, not connecting her to anyone. This is a nod to her 'solitude'?

Ribbon 2: Comes from outside of the frame, and then connects Takeru to Michiru to Ruka. Each of those that are connected have a 'deeper connection' so as they are tied by fate to be together. The ribbon seems to end at Ruka, as it doesn't seem to leave the frame. Could this be foreshadowing that her 'fate' has a definite end in sight, where she dies? Then again, Ruka also has a second ribbon (ribbon 3?) on her other wrist that comes and goes from outside the frame, without giving her a connection to anyone else. Perhaps signifying that without her connection to Michiru, she's also be in 'solitude'?

I also find it strange that Takeru doesn't have a ribbon that connects him to Ruka, since there seems to be something shaping up in that direction... but maybe since he knows her feelings towards Michiru, things never progress between the two of them for that "deeper connection" that seems to be needed for the red ribbon to connect?

Ribbon 4: Connects Michiru to Sosuke, and then trails out of the frame. Again, there's the definate Michiru / Sosuke connection, but that also shows that he doesn't have that deep connection to any of the others.

----------------------------------

A couple additional points that I noticed, but don't really have a place to fit them here...

1. Everyone in the final shot (with the red ribbon) is facing someone... or at least is facing in the direction of someone. All except for Sosuke. Does that mean that everyone has someone to turn to for help with their 'issues' except for Sosuke, who is left alone with no one to listen?

2. Sosuke is the only one wearing anything that isn't white. Now this is obvious to say ... that's because he's a bad guy... black=bad. Okay, well, I was thinking about that a little more deeply. Perhaps that bit of black that he wears represents the small part of himself that he doesn't like - I shall refer to that part as evil-Sosuke.

Since he is the only one that is wearing anything other than white, it makes me think that he's the only one showing his true colours. He knows he has a problem, but hasn't found anyway to deal with it. He doesn't hide his problem (at least, he isn't hiding it very well, from all the DV he's showing) and so he wears a bit of black.

The rest wear nothing but white - effectively hiding their "true colours".

Michiru hides the pain from her relationship with Sosuke, so she can feel a bit of that "love" she's never felt before. (Though by the end of the third episode, she doesn't seem to be hiding it any longer... for the time being at least, I can see he going back to him again... starting the cycle once more.)

Ruka hides her feelings about Michiru - loving her the only way she knows how to ... from afar, stealing a kiss when the chance surfaces. She's also apparently hiding some sort of medical condition from everyone, judging by the website she's been visiting.

Takeru is hiding the 'agony' that he feels inside from his past traumas.

And Eri is hiding her solitude, by trying to act all happy-go-lucky. I suspect her owning a rooming house is a way to try to rid herself of solitude, but that doesn't work well when everyone moves out on her.

---------------------------------

Again, sorry for the length... didn't realize I'd gone so in depth with my theories here. Feel free to skim past this one if you want ;)

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Post by belleza » Apr 30th, '08, 10:25

I know how it feels to be a gay gaijin here, but to be gay Japanese? And a female? I'd rather die!
Mm hmm. When one of my friends came out, we all knew but we waited until he was ready.

At some point in the story, Ruka will finally press her. Ruka will finally call her on Michiru's bluff and whether Michiru can love her the same way. So the climax of the story won't be when Ruka discloses her feelings, but when she forces Michiru to confront her own and her limits. When you fall in love with your best friend and when you realize that there's that little bit of possibility that a miracle can happen, it could just as easily plunge your heart into hell. To believe that someone is in denial is to also want to set your own self free.

General non-spoiler thoughts on show . . .
There's kind of a tension between the script and the direction. The latter seems most at ease framing the story as a psychological thriller, with intermediate pauses of tenderness and wistful reflection. As this is mostly Michiru's story, Last Friend often plays like Michiru's survival tale, broken by brief memories/moments of friendship that connects her voiceover thoughts in the present day. We are led on one woman's path of sadness and quietly gathering dread. That is how the drama plays. And I think that is how Masami's being asked to play Michiru, as a survivor of her choices/mistakes rather than a young woman changed by friendships.

But that is differently, so far, than how Juri is playing Ruka. Even though she's fighting through her own demons, her story in Last Friends is on the other side of the wall. Michiru, through 3 episodes, resides in a world where family is wasteland, work is in a cage, and home is a brutal police state. Ruka lives in a world where happiness is fruit hanging just beyond her grasp. And everybody closest to her wants her to jump higher, want her to be free, even if it may destroy her, even if it may lead her away from those she loves. Ruka's story is the script's story, the tale of ancient friendships and elusive relationships, of impossible longing suffocating the soul into dreams of incredible love. Which is to say that, however darkly lit the glass, her eyes beneath her haunted shell can see the glimmer of her happiness over in the place of her freedom. It is a motorcycle romance over the fires of hell, but it is a romance nonetheless. Juri is asked to play Ruka as an expression of passionate/compassionate love . . . through each episode, we experience a person becoming a tragic hero in another's memory. The words she says, the emotions she feels has shadows, because as narrated through Michiru and Takeru, she begins to burn as she comes closer to the sun, the light of her love.

I'm not sure if I'm completely happy with this split. Part of me wants the drama (i.e. the sound effects, the Hitchcockian man outside the window, the besides the to move away from the ritual torture and explicit prostylizing over each person's red string. Sousuke is not so much a character, as he is a ghoul, a Karlofian monster handing out the nightly smackdown to "push" the story along. I'm sure Ryo is like "when they told me I was going to be Masami's boyfriend, I naturally assumed we'd like kiss." It is well heeded that he can only find catharsis through pain, be it hurting others or hurting his body, and that she seems to substantiate emotional connection through recycling daddy's history of violence. But it also feels very robotic now. Instead of shedding light, it feels a little like the director is shooting shoot another "disturbing" scene to give the themes "cred."

For me, even though this seems like a variation of the suffering ingenue that Masami's played, she is most suited for this role. Her suffering is a persistent rationalization of her emotions which have already accepted the base misery of her condition. This was probably a significant base for Ruka and Micheru's friendship; Micheru was miserable from external factors; Ruka was miserable from within. Every meeting of Micheru and Ruka starts with Ruka asking Micheru if she is doing okay (i.e. Micheru, are you surviving better?) Micheru loves the hands that hold her down. Ruka lives watching her rear view mirror.
But part of that rationalization (which Masami plays very, very well into giving her characters internality) is that it allows Masami to present Micheru's capacity for love as round and cloudlike as possible. Meaning, when she is affectionate to Ruka, when she is emotionally responding to Ruka's words, it is a marvelous trick where Micheru opens her heart so easily, comfortably and generously to Ruka without awareness of what their friendship should mean or what boundaries should exist. She knows not how unfair her condition is; she equally has no self-awareness over the depth of her own gratitude toward Ruka. Micheru's grasp on friendships/relationships may be a little self-serving and dishonest (especially toward Ruka who observes "friendship" as a martial law upon her happiness), but her capacity to give love and her hunger to recieve love is like a 1000 suns to Ruka. Masami's Micheru is the unassuming, absorbing ocean; it is meant to be formeless. Warm, good intentions, easy to kiss, leaves marks where her hands and hugs have been. Just as long as she doesn't have to define what it is, or be responsible to it. Ruka

That all said, my favorite acting is coming from Eita. His performance is so casual and unfussy, that you take for granted how of consistently in character he is. Takeru's visceral responses when watching the movie, his outrage toward Sousuke and simmering resentment to mom so casually, and his easy kindness toward his roomies seem truly of one the same essence. As impressive as Juri's performance of Ruka is, there's various points where she lapses from continuing the emotional thread of her character. And, perhaps in navigating the heartwarming with the vageuly shlocky, Masami's mannerisms are more pronounced in Micheru. Eita beautifully articulates Takeru's disconnect between the animal and his passive civility. I hope his story comes into focus quicker.
Medical thoughts . . .
Trips to the urologist suggests that Ruka may be worried about symptoms of ovarian cancer (i.e. pain in the pelvis, bleeding, etc.) which does hit 20-something women. BUT, given that she has a good relationship with her parents, it would be highly, highly unlikely her parents would be in the dark over something like this.

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Post by sleepyzzz » Apr 30th, '08, 12:28

@belleza: All I can say is that your analysis leaves me breathless!! :thumleft:
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Currently crazy about: K-ON!!, Hard to Say I Love You, Girl Friends and Angel Beats :wub:

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Post by GoddessCarlie » Apr 30th, '08, 13:19

belleza some more thumbs up from me! I enjoyed reading your post.

Here's some of my crazy cup thoughts, thanks zeiroc for the link, I couldn't find it before.
There is obviously something going on with the cups. In the first episode, Michiru is drinking from her version of the cup, the pink cup. We know now that Takeru has the purple cup and Ruka has the blue version of the cup. So they all have the same cup in different colours. I'm not sure what this means, but I think it will play a role.

Matching cups is a big thing in the story line too. Sousuke's present is after all a cup matching to his own. I think it is also very interesting that the cups have the red ribbon motif on them.

That's just some of the thoughts going through my head, I need to sort them out a bit more, but I'm sure that cups will feature more in the story line. It's telling that one breaks in the opening sequence, the opening sequence is filled with symbolism.
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