[Discussion] CHANGE - Kimura Takuya's Spring 2008 drama

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MisS Lonliah
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Post by MisS Lonliah » Jul 15th, '08, 22:00

Love Angel wrote:well..I LOVE the OST!! especially the 8th track..very nice ^^

the rating for the last ep was high!
"CHANGE" ratings end on a high note
Tue, July 15, 2008 (12:29am EDT)

Fuji TV's Monday night drama series "CHANGE," starring Takuya Kimura, aired its final episode this week. It averaged a 27.4% rating in the Kanto area, making it the highest-rated drama episode so far this year. The previous highest was the premiere of "Gokusen 3," which achieved 26.4%. However, "Gokusen" still ranks #1 for the season average.

The finale of "CHANGE" reached its peak during the episode's second half, attaining a 31.2% peak.

source: tokyograph
well lol yes yes you're right I just checked it and it is very good :D but it really makes me 100% nervous while they play it in the background waaah *9edg t5aleeny ayles 3ala a39aby :P *

@quote.. Great News.. Thank You very Much. Kimura's magic worked at the end
8)

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Post by Tadanga » Jul 16th, '08, 20:27

I am sure you guys have noticed that the televised speech was pretty long.
Kimura showcased the extent of his talent ( once again ) and proved ( yet again ) why he was the #1 star in Japan.
That scene is actually 22 minutes and 35 seconds long : it has got to be the longest uncut scene with dialogue in history.
I have been searching for the past two days of another scene anywhere that lasts longer but couldn't find any.
Is this a record ?

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Post by Ginoru » Jul 17th, '08, 01:36

It has to be a record!!

After finishing it it feels weird but i want to say it has been a cute drama, can cute be used in a politics drama?? :roll
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Post by atskv9 » Jul 17th, '08, 01:49

Ginoru wrote:After finishing it it feels weird but i want to say it has been a cute drama, can cute be used in a politics drama?? :roll
This time it can :lol
I haven't seen the last episode yet but I'm itchin' to see it! :D

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Post by mac_meister » Jul 17th, '08, 20:01

Tadanga wrote:I am sure you guys have noticed that the televised speech was pretty long.
Kimura showcased the extent of his talent ( once again ) and proved ( yet again ) why he was the #1 star in Japan.
That scene is actually 22 minutes and 35 seconds long : it has got to be the longest uncut scene with dialogue in history.
I have been searching for the past two days of another scene anywhere that lasts longer but couldn't find any.
Is this a record ?
Yes, that scene was the longest and the awesome part of it was when it was filmed, it only took Kimura one take/one cut/one sitting to do that heavy scene. No re-shoots. Imagine all the dialogue he had to memorize, internalize and emote on screen. Truly amazing!!!!!

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Post by mac_meister » Jul 18th, '08, 02:54

Ginoru wrote:It has to be a record!!
---------------

:-) :D :P :thumleft: :cheers: :mrgreen:

YES IT IS!!!! And it's a perfect record for TK, still the reigning King of Jdoramas.

Check out and see the stats:

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

HIGHEST RATED "GEKKU" DRAMAS (2000-2008)

1 34.20 01/01 HERO
2 26.12 00/10 やまとなでしこ (Yamato Nadeshiko)
3 24.90 04/01 プライド (Pride)
4 22.82 06/01 西遊記 (Saiyuki)
5 22.42 05/04 エンジン (Engine)
6 22.26 02/04 空から降る一億の星 (Sora Kara Furu Ichioku no Hoshi)
7 21.91 07/10 ガリレオ (Galileo)
8 21.72 08/04 CHANGE
9 21.54 04/10 ラストクリスマス (Last Christmas)
10 21.35 02/01 人にやさしく (Hito ni Yasashiku)
11 18.91 02/07 ランチの女王 (Lunch no Joou)
12 18.79 06/10 のだめカンタービレ (Nodame Cantabile)
13 18.78 05/10 危険なアネキ (Kiken na Aniki)
14 18.58 08/01 薔薇のない花屋 (Bara no nai Hanaya)
15 18.25 06/04 トップキャスター (Top Caster)


*Fuji TV Monday 9pm timeslot

--------

HIGHEST RATED FINAL EPISODES (2000-2008)

1 41.3 00/01 Beautiful Life
2  37.6 03/01 GOOD LUCK!!
3  36.8 01/01 HERO
4  34.2 00/10 やまとなでしこ (Yamato Nadeshiko)
5  32.5 05/01 ごくせん(2) (Gokusen 2)
6  32.1 04/01 白い巨塔 (Shiro Kyoto)
7  30.4 07/01 華麗なる一族 (Karei naru Ichizoku)
8  28.8 04/01 プライド (Pride)
9  28.0 00/10 オヤジぃ。(Oyaji)
10 27.6 07/01 花より男子2(リターンズ) (Hana Yori Dango 2)
11 27.4 08/04 CHANGE
12 27.1 04/01 僕と彼女と彼女の生きる道 (Boku to Kanojo to Kanojo no Ikiru Michi)
13 27.0 02/04 空から降る一億の星 (Sora Kara Furu Ichioku no Hoshi)
14 26.0 07/01 ハケンの品格 (Haken no Hinakau)
15 25.9 06/10 Dr.コトー診療所2006 (Dr. Koto Shinryojo 2006)
16 25.5 05/07 電車男 (Densha Otoko)
17 25.4 01/07 救命病棟24時(2) (Kyumei Byoto 24 Ji 2)
18 25.3 05/07 女王の教室 (Joou no Kyoushitsu)
19 24.7 06/01 西遊記 (Saiyuki)
20 24.3 05/04 エンジン (Engine)
20 24.3 00/04 ショムニ(2) (Shomuni 2)
22 23.6 08/04 ごくせん(3) (Gokusen 3)
23 23.5 02/04 ごくせん(1) (Gokusen)
24 23.2 06/07 マイ★ボス マイ★ヒーロー (My Boss My Hero)
25 23.0 04/04 オレンジデイズ (Orange Days)
26 22.9 04/10 ラストクリスマス (Last Christmas)
27 22.8 08/04 ラスト・フレンズ (Last Friends)
27 22.8 04/07 WATER BOYS2
29 22.5 02/01 人にやさしく (Hito ni Yasashiku)
30 22.4 05/10 花より男子(Hana Yori Dango)
30 22.4 06/10 14才の母 (14 Sai no Haha)

---------

DRAMAS WITH AVERAGE RATINGS OF 20% AND UP (2000-2008)

1  34.20 01/01 HERO
2  31.86 00/01 Beautiful Life
3  30.41 03/01 GOOD LUCK!!
4  27.83 05/01 ごくせん(2) (Gokusen 2)
5  26.12 00/10 やまとなでしこ (Yamato Nadeshiko)
6  24.90 04/01 プライド (Pride)
7  24.18 00/10 オヤジぃ。(Oyaji)
8  23.87 07/01 華麗なる一族 (Karei naru Ichizoku)
9  23.71 03/10 白い巨塔(2クール) (Shiroi Kyoto 2nd chapter)
10 22.82 06/01 西遊記 (Saiyuki)
11 22.59 08/04 ごくせん(3) (Gokusen 3)
12 22.42 05/04 エンジン (Engine)
13 22.26 02/04 空から降る一億の星 (Sora Kara Furu Ichioku no Hoshi)
14 22.13 06/10 Dr.コトー診療所2006(Dr. Koto Shinryojo 2006)
15 21.91 07/10 ガリレオ(Galileo)
16 21.72 08/04 CHANGE
17 21.69 07/01 花より男子2(リターンズ) (Hana Yori Dango 2)
18 21.54 04/10 ラストクリスマス (Last Christmas)
19 21.35 02/01 人にやさしく(Hito ni Yasashiku)
20 21.04 05/07 電車男 (Densha Otoko)
21 20.82 01/04 LOVE STORY
22 20.68 04/01 僕と彼女と彼女の生きる道 (Boku to Kanojo to Kanojo no Ikiru Michi)
23 20.29 00/04 ショムニ(2) (Shomuni 2)
24 20.20 01/07 救命病棟24時(2) (Kyumei Byoto 24 Ji 2)
25 20.16 01/01 白い影 (Shiroi Kyoto)
26 20.10 07/01 ハケンの品格 (Haken no Hinkaku)

----------

Drama Grand Prix: "CHANGE" and "Last Friends" win for Fuji TV
Thu, July 17, 2008 (1:42am EDT)


Nikkan Sports has completed its Nikkan Sports Drama Grand Prix for the spring season, which counts as the first quarter of the 2008 awards. A total of 8,350 votes were gathered during the first ten days of July.

Fuji TV's Monday night series "CHANGE" took two awards. It edged out "Last Friends" by 129 votes to be named Best Drama, and Takuya Kimura overwhelmed "ROOKIES" star Ryuta Sato by a margin of almost 2,200 votes in the race for Best Actor.

Yuki Amami was voted Best Actress for her role in "Around 40." The next closest choices were Aoi Miyazaki and Yukie Nakama.

"Last Friends" picked up the remaining two categories, Best Supporting Actor and Actress. Ryo Nishikido only collected 1,100 votes, but it was enough to defeat Hiroshi Abe and the rest. Juri Ueno, considered only a supporting cast member to Masami Nagasawa, pulled in more than 2,500 votes, with Eri Fukatsu slightly less than 400 votes away.

source: tokyograph

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Post by 8thSin » Jul 18th, '08, 03:40

Just finished watching this series, I absolutely LOVED it, even more than HERO series.
Fukatsu Eri's chemistry with KimuTaku was incredible :blink

I hope there would be a SP or movie, the ending certainly makes it possible.

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Post by hanapyupyu » Jul 18th, '08, 16:48

8thSin wrote:Just finished watching this series, I absolutely LOVED it, even more than HERO series.
Fukatsu Eri's chemistry with KimuTaku was incredible :blink

I hope there would be a SP or movie, the ending certainly makes it possible.
Yeah, Eri and Kimutaku had great chemistry in Sora Kara Furu Ichioku no Hoshi too.

I still haven't watched the final episode of Change yet. But one thing has to be said, Kimutaku dramas always have impeccable supporting characters. Abe Hiroshi and Eri Fukatsu were both wonderful here. :thumleft:

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Post by Skyler88 » Jul 19th, '08, 00:22

8thSin wrote:I hope there would be a SP or movie, the ending certainly makes it possible.
I certainly hope they do too... keeping my fingers cross :thumright:

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Post by Ginoru » Jul 19th, '08, 02:29

Me too!! and with that ending they could make a nice little story :)

By the way could someone explain to me the meaning of the white gloves? and no white gloves too ;)
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Post by 8thSin » Jul 19th, '08, 02:51

Ginoru wrote:By the way could someone explain to me the meaning of the white gloves? and no white gloves too ;)
Sash on top of suit with white gloves is common attire for election candidates during their campaign.

I'm guess it's a sign of service or professionalism, since white gloves are generally part of military uniform (I guess "self-defense force" in Japan), and taxi drivers also wear them.

Asakura Keita took them off to show that he's not above everyone else... "My hands are just like yours".

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Post by MisS Lonliah » Jul 20th, '08, 00:29

8thSin wrote: I hope there would be a SP or movie, the ending certainly makes it possible.
Me toooooo :cry:

can't believe there is no more CHANGE in my weekends =(

it is a refreshing CHANGE to watch such a great drama!

this Kimura is certainly a CHANGE for the creativity & the real enjoyment :D

waiting for more from him :salut:

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Post by Kazuya_ » Jul 20th, '08, 02:07

I guess I'm one of the only people that thought this drama was mediocre at best.

Especially since Fukatsu Eri and Abe Hiroshi are much better actors than Kimura and their skills were not utilized in their roles IMO.

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Post by fleng » Jul 20th, '08, 09:05

Kazuya_ wrote:I guess I'm one of the only people that thought this drama was mediocre at best.

Especially since Fukatsu Eri and Abe Hiroshi are much better actors than Kimura and their skills were not utilized in their roles IMO.
Don't agree with you but then again it's your opinion and you are entitled to it. Kimura in my opinion definitely did an awesome job as usual. Theres no wonder he's the king of doramas.

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Post by fleng » Jul 20th, '08, 09:06

Kazuya_ wrote:I guess I'm one of the only people that thought this drama was mediocre at best.

Especially since Fukatsu Eri and Abe Hiroshi are much better actors than Kimura and their skills were not utilized in their roles IMO.
Don't agree with you but then again it's your opinion and you are entitled to it. Kimura in my opinion definitely did an awesome job as usual. Theres no wonder he's the king of doramas.

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Post by raven_frost » Jul 20th, '08, 09:57

Change feels like Engine done on a bigger, higher level. Except that there were so many veteran heavyweight actors in Change who were sorely under utilised. Pity that.

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Post by raven_frost » Jul 20th, '08, 09:58

Change feels like Engine done on a bigger, higher level. Except that there were so many veteran heavyweight actors in Change who were sorely under utilised. Pity that.

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Post by raven_frost » Jul 20th, '08, 09:59

Change feels like the drama Engine done on a bigger, higher level. Except that there were so many veteran heavyweight actors in Change who were sorely under utilised. Pity that.

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Post by raven_frost » Jul 20th, '08, 10:00

This drama feels like Engine done on a bigger, higher level. Except that there were so many veteran heavyweight actors in Change who were sorely under utilised. Pity that.

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Post by raven_frost » Jul 20th, '08, 10:01

Oh goodness there are so many multiple posts and I can't seem to delete them.

There was some bug/coding error it seems.
Last edited by raven_frost on Jul 20th, '08, 23:28, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by raven_frost » Jul 20th, '08, 10:02

There were many scenes in Change that clearly showed up Kimura Takuya's acting ability. One particular episode was I think 7 or 8 where he felt anguished and perhaps betrayed but he just couldn't portray the build up of those emotions. So they had to settle for some creative camera work to try to convey the somber, dark mood.
Last edited by raven_frost on Jul 21st, '08, 01:31, edited 2 times in total.

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Post by Spielbol » Jul 20th, '08, 19:39

Takuya had never been an awesome actor. He is decent mostly, sometimes good, never awesome. He had shown no remarkable growth as an actor with the same focus on his lip bitting. I guess you can call him a steady actor with cookie cutter perfomances. Although he had played many characters of different occupation. The characters' personalities are very similar. IMO of course.

While he might not be the better actor, I find takenouchi's acting style (appearing in Tomorrow at this time) much more suitable for asakura's character. Of course, he is the more serious, brooding type and would not have meshed well with the slapstick script. However, I can guarantee that takenouchi would have given a much better, more touching monologue. Also, I would have enjoyed the drama better if it had a more serious tone in the mold of shiroi kyoto and takuya's character had real human flaws (besides his kindness/trust).

Lastly, the talents of fukatsu and hiroshi were never utilized. I was surpised fukatsu was able to make something out of nothing with her character. What a shame.

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Post by 8thSin » Jul 20th, '08, 22:05

Man, what's with multiple posts? Massive server lag?
Spielbol wrote:Takuya had never been an awesome actor. He is decent mostly, sometimes good, never awesome. He had shown no remarkable growth as an actor with the same focus on his lip bitting. I guess you can call him a steady actor with cookie cutter perfomances. Although he had played many characters of different occupation. The characters' personalities are very similar. IMO of course.

While he might not be the better actor, I find takenouchi's acting style (appearing in Tomorrow at this time) much more suitable for asakura's character. Of course, he is the more serious, brooding type and would not have meshed well with the slapstick script. However, I can guarantee that takenouchi would have given a much better, more touching monologue. Also, I would have enjoyed the drama better if it had a more serious tone in the mold of shiroi kyoto and takuya's character had real human flaws (besides his kindness/trust).

Lastly, the talents of fukatsu and hiroshi were never utilized. I was surpised fukatsu was able to make something out of nothing with her character. What a shame.
I agree KimuTaku has never been the best actor around, but he's above average for dorama actors, and by far the best in Johnny's.

Takenouchi as Asakura would've been a major miscast. He wouldn't have been any different from all other politicians, except younger.
The distinguishing features of Asakura's character was that "He had the words" (passionate), and that people are drawn to him (charisma/charm). The character was clearly designed specifically for KimuTaku. No one else could've possibly matched him in this role.

I personally feel this series more than drew out Fukatsu Eri's acting talents. But maybe that's just because I didn't like her much in previous roles...
I agree Abe Hiroshi's character was criminally underused, but Abe Hiroshi has a lot of movies coming up, so his character's involvement was most likely scaled down due to schedule conflict.

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Post by Spielbol » Jul 21st, '08, 02:15

Relatively speaking... yes, he is above average. Strictly speaking... he is a very good entertainer, but an average actor at best.

“The distinguishing features of Asakura's character was that "He had the words" (passionate), and that people are drawn to him (charisma/charm). The character was clearly designed specifically for KimuTaku. No one else could've possibly matched him in this role.”

Yes, I agree that the character likely (at least the initial campaign) was designed for taku, but I tend not to think takenouchi would be just another politician in a similar themed drama. Like you said indirectly... jdrama acting runs from bad to average (thus your opinion of taku being above average) and stereotyped, then wouldn't the script be one that can see more development and be more fluid? That's why I mentioned I would have enjoyed it more with a more serious tone and thus allowed asakura's character to be more complex.

As I alluded to previously, the slapstick script would not have worked with takenouchi's acting style and seems likely to be designed specifically/altered for takuya. Those early campaign speeches were just tailor-made for takuya. From his speeches, I can see the writer using takuya’s charm to convince the viewers of his supposed passion for the people. As takenouchi cannot pull off that love & peace BS/fantasy, he would likely have to propose a tangible yet radical policy that bucks the company line. In addition, I believe there are plenty of ways to get the already everyman-like takenouchi elected.

My premise is while there were a few parts only Takuya could have done well, there are so much more in the drama that takenouchi could have easily replaced him and performed better. While the show started out all slapstick-y (right into taku's wheelhouse), it ended in a serious note. Frankly, takuya isn't any good with the serious act and gives nothing but the grimacing in thought while biting his lips like we have seen so many times. Of course, it wouldn't be the "CHANGE" we saw with the changes I preferred so all the crap I mentioned were all just academic. But as the current script stands without changes, Takenouchi would have bettered taku in the middle episodes and far outperformed takuya the last 3-4 episodes. He would have mugged takuya and stole his daughter’s lunch money during that monologue.

This was like casting Ronald Reagan as Jefferson in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.
He had more charm (hey, enough to be elected president), but jimmy stewart was a much better actor and portraits the rough yet sensitive everyman look perfectly. Takuya’s appearance is too refined/sophisticated/womanizing (aka his charm) for the portrayal of a countryside teacher or even a salary man. I can assure you that jimmy wouldn’t need the star-gazing, curly hair crap to convince you that he was an everyman nor do takenouchi. While takenouchi isn’t the actor stewart was either, but I think he would have done better than taku and the drama better overall if the slapstick part was toned down and used another vehicle to get him elected.

So I don’t know if I should blame the writer to not write a script that was perfect for takuya or that takuya is just an actor that can’t excel even with a script tailored for him.

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Post by 8thSin » Jul 21st, '08, 06:19

^
Maybe this genre of dorama is just not your thing. I can see why some may think it could've had more character developments, but I thought this series had a really nice flow, and it really connected with me.

With or without KimuTaku, CHANGE was never meant to be a dark or super-serious dorama since it's directed by the same person who directed HERO, and scriptwriters are also the same. Complaining about that is like saying one genre's better than another.
The focus of this series is same as HERO: Inspiration and achievement of a charming, hard working protagonist "doing the right thing" and helping the weak. Also pointing out couple of things wrong with "the system" in the progress. There was nothing wrong with the character setting for this purpose, and Kimura Takuya was the perfect (if not the only possible) casting.

Plus I don't understand your fascination with Takenouchi. He would've been disastrous in the current script since his acting is practically the opposite of passionate and emotional... How could he possibly have handled that monologue? There was no way he could've portrayed a young, radically earnest politician who wouldn't sleep even sleep for work, as well as Kimura did.
Frankly, he's not even that good of an actor IMO. I would think he's below average among dorama actors...


The only person I think would've done well as Asakura other than KimuTaku is Odagiri Joe... His personality is a lot darker than KimuTaku, but he excels in emotional scenes as good if not better than KimuTaku, and actually has the naturally curly hair :whistling:
The series would've been a completely different tone, but could've worked with existing script and would've been quite interesting.

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Post by Love Angel » Jul 21st, '08, 07:08

watched the final ep yesterday..wow, it was soo good. it had it's funny/ tearful moments..I was impressed by the 22 minutes speech..it was soo well done..well kimura is a great actor after all ( at least for me)..all the cast did well..from the prime minister to the SP ( I love the SP guy..he was cute and funny XD)..kimura/eri sure did have a great chemistry together..as welll as kimura/abe..


I never knew that I'll ever like a political drama that much..some scenes in it really touched me..I think it became my favorite drama this year :thumright:


I'm sad now that it ended. hope that they will decide on making a special episode..that would be great :roll

and all the thanks for Massuki Fansub for providing us high quality subs for this drama :thumleft:

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Post by cuteangelika » Jul 21st, '08, 08:52

just finished watching the last episode a few minutes ago.. Wow, i was captivated by the monologue. I dont think there's anybody better for this role. Im not saying this because Im kimutaku's #1 fan, ok,haha, i am saying this because i am his #1 fan...

Asakura oozes with charisma and I dont think anybody does it better than kimutaku. I would have preferred it to have more episodes -- there were a lot of angles that were left uncovered -- plus, no kissing scene! waaah... haha. ok, thats the fangirl in me again. Seriously, they could have tackled a lot in the drama, could have even had at least two more episodes. Oh well, im just glad that I got to watch this drama. I can go to sleep and dream about politics and the cutie PM now...

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Kimura vs Takenouchi

Post by 1shinigami0 » Jul 21st, '08, 10:07

Casting is always an "what if" game, isn't? The discussion about how the drama would turn out if Takenouchi had Kimura's role is quite interesting.

I enjoy the work of both actors very much. I think Kimura has grown as an actor, and his recent film roles are proof (except for Hero). He was very good on 2046 and I loved him in Bushi no Ichibun. His role in the upcoming I come with the rain looks promising as well.

Takenouchi, on the other hand, has proven to be a very versatile actor and every new role seems to bring something different. I admire his capability to telegraph emotions with very few words (or none at all).

Change was a great drama, but I have to agree that it relies heavily on Kimura's charm to make it work. He's able to balance the goofy and the serious stuff like no one else. Takenouchi can do comedy, as seen in Shotgun Wedding, but he would bring a certain gravitas to the role, in my mind. Would that work better? I think it would be a totally different drama. Change, as it is, has the Kimura imprint all over it.

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Post by jesamine » Jul 21st, '08, 13:42

I just finished watching the final episode and just blown away, Kimura kun is AMAZING! Though I'm also dissapointed that there's no kissing scene lol!! Isn't this Kimura kun's first drama without a kissing scene?? Also, it wasn't shown if he won the election to enter the prime minister office again.

Just a question.. not sure if this is a spoiler but those who haven't watched maybe skip reading this part!

What did he mean when he said to Miyama san, that he wanted her to be by his side, forever? Was that a proposal in code or something?? Or did he just want her as his secretary forever? Japanese subtleties are sometimes just that... way too subtle!!

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Post by mfeje210 » Jul 21st, '08, 13:47

Spielbol: i think i would like to disagree with you regarding the character of keita will be much better portray by takenouchi than kimura. i only knew kimura recently but i've already seen almost his drama. i known him when i tried to watch the drama pride and that lead me to search all his works. so far that i had seen in his acting he give justice to all the characters that he had been portrayed. will regarding as keita it suited to kimura that takenouchi, i saw the drama tomorrow but to tell you the truth i felt bored with the drama even though the actor is good looking. i'm not attracted to the drama because it doesn't pulled me to watch it(sorry this is only my opinion). even though change was a simple drama so far i'm entertained by it because kimura give justice or life to the role he was portraying. :D peace.

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Post by Love Angel » Jul 21st, '08, 14:15

jesamine wrote:
Just a question.. not sure if this is a spoiler but those who haven't watched maybe skip reading this part!

What did he mean when he said to Miyama san, that he wanted her to be by his side, forever? Was that a proposal in code or something?? Or did he just want her as his secretary forever? Japanese subtleties are sometimes just that... way too subtle!!

It was s proposal..see the rings ^o^

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Post by cetok » Jul 21st, '08, 14:52

ahh... all have been said..
^... that's very sharp eyes u have
anyway, i find most A actors or actress tend to stick to sth they r familiar or good at..
never trying to be unprecedented roles in drama.
i mean trying on a role that challenge their art ..like hanging between failure or success to the drama..
most of them take on drama that they know it would be in between if not success.

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Post by epi » Jul 21st, '08, 14:58

i just finished this series yesterday ... i have to say that among all of kimutaku's works that i've seen this is his best series (followed very closely by PRIDE ... mainly because of takeuchi yuko and BEAUTIFUL LIFE)

regarding casting ... i think kimutaku is perfect for CHANGE ... sometimes i even feel that the writers script the drama especially for him and it's understandable considering that they wrote HERO too ... but i do think that his characters and facial expressions are somewhat similar from one dramas to the next ... even to the extent that if i have the script in front of me i can probably imagine how he will act a particular scene

the only one actor whom i don't really like in CHANGE is terao akira ... he shows the same facial expressions throughout the series it's like he's wearing a mask ... but maybe that's what his character supposed to show -- a person with a mask who is very difficult to read and showing very little emotions ... looking back to his role in yasashii jikan IMO he's portraying the exact same character there as in CHANGE ... emotionless ... although yuichi's character is really different from kanbayashi's character

the only drama of takenouchi yutaka that i've seen was long vacation ... and he starred with kimutaku there 8) i was neither impressed or disappointed by his acting because his character didn't make a big impression on me ... and it doesn't help that i don't really like the drama (though i love the piano pieces there) but i have a feeling that with the current script only kimutaku can deliver ... takenouchi might be able to portray asakura better than kimutaku but then it'll be a different asakura ... so we can't really compare the two because it'll be comparing apple and orange ...

overall ... i really enjoyed this drama ... the best this season for me

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Post by Skyler88 » Jul 22nd, '08, 03:09

sigh... I still hv 25% left to download... feel like forever.

Since there's been much discussion on Kimura's acting ability, I would like to add my 2 cents worth (if I may). Firstly, for a script to suit an actor/actress (vice versa) is a norm. Isn't it suppose to be that way? So far I enjoyed all his dramas, from Love Generation to Good Luck to Hero and now, CHANGE. I do agree with some that his roles are pretty similiar. But somehow, he manage to rise to the occasion. I guess it all boils down to wether you like his acting or not. Once you're hooked, you'll enjoy the rest. Of course my last point is rather bias, hehe, if I do say so myself :p

All of u guys hv yr points, some I agree, some I do... but hey, thats what discussion is for. :D

Anyway, would also like to thank MASSUKI FANSUB for all their hardwork. You guys ROCK.

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Post by chokubi » Jul 22nd, '08, 04:00

epi wrote:...but i do think that his characters and facial expressions are somewhat similar from one dramas to the next ... even to the extent that if i have the script in front of me i can probably imagine how he will act a particular scene
In Karei naru Ichizoku, I thought he did a pretty damn good job trying to pull away from his "trademark image" (as mentioned in the quote); if that's even the intention to begin with.
And the result of his new (serious) acting was great as well, made me look at him in a different light after that.

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Post by Skyler88 » Jul 22nd, '08, 04:05

chokubi wrote:
epi wrote:...but i do think that his characters and facial expressions are somewhat similar from one dramas to the next ... even to the extent that if i have the script in front of me i can probably imagine how he will act a particular scene
In Karei naru Ichizoku, I thought he did a pretty damn good job trying to pull away from his "trademark image" (as mentioned in the quote); if that's even the intention to begin with.
And the result of his new (serious) acting was great as well, made me look at him in a different light after that.
Maybe Epi meant his 'taking out his spectacles' scene. I seem to see it quite a bit. IMHO.

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Post by jesamine » Jul 22nd, '08, 04:22

Wow Love angel you have amazingly sharp eyes!!! Thank you for that!!! lol! I think I'll watch that last part again! lol!

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Post by chokubi » Jul 22nd, '08, 04:22

Skyler88 wrote:Maybe Epi meant his 'taking out his spectacles' scene. I seem to see it quite a bit. IMHO.
I've seen most of KimuTaku's dramas and his whole array of "similar" expressions that he recycles from time to time. Like Epi, I've identified a few myself.
And for what's worth, she did mention expressions. Sorry to nitpick. :whistling:

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Post by seirin » Jul 22nd, '08, 19:28

I think Kimutaku's expression is pretty much the same when he expresses certain emotions but he plays the average guy which I guess is himself. He doesn't over act or under acts. Basically not very annoying and he seems to have charisma or else I wouldn't be drawn in. As for Takenouchi doing better than takuya, I doubt it. I like watching Takenouchi and all and he's a great looking guy, but he also has his own quirks (personal expression) that is seen in other dramas too. I'm not sure if it's the story line or his acting but I find myself bored watching his dramas in the past few years. I loved him in Hoshi no kinka, ice world, with love and he was some what fun to watch (eye candy, bad story line) in beach boys, but overall he seems to portray the serious guy best. Slapstick doesn't seem his nature. I also thought Takuya's speech at the end was pretty touching. Would Takenouchi have done better? Probably not. I can't recall when I've ever been really moved by Takenouchi's line but I was moved by Takuya's lines in several dramas. As for Takuya being the best actor out of JE, I do agree. I haven't watched any other JE actor I liked more than Takuya. I'm not a Takuya fangirl either. Frankly Takenouchi is much better looking IMO ^^; As for Takuya being above average entertainer. I don't know if you mean his singing. But his singing is average as a professional singer. He's really not such an awesome singer.

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Post by Skyler88 » Jul 23rd, '08, 03:07

chokubi wrote:I've seen most of KimuTaku's dramas and his whole array of "similar" expressions that he recycles from time to time. Like Epi, I've identified a few myself.
And for what's worth, she did mention expressions. Sorry to nitpick. :whistling:
I agree. Point taken. :-)

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Post by snow_of_dawn » Jul 23rd, '08, 19:09

I watched the final episode yesterday and was greatly impressed, I think that was the episode that i enjoyed the most, it was simply AWESOME especially Kimutaku's Speech scene. I didn't think of checking how long it aired bec i really enjoyed it VERY much and even cried in some parts, really KimuTaku proved he's the best actor around.(and yeah now that u say it i think this scene's definitely a record :D )
I don't know what's with trying 2 imagine another actor playing Asakura's role, maybe bec i really find it meaningless 2 do so, but i have 2 say i don't agree with anyone who thinks that another actor could have played Asakura's role better than Kimura. gotta be kidding, that particular role seems like it's been designed specifically 4 Kimura Takuya, and he did a great job portraying it as was expected
The distinguishing features of Asakura's character was that "He had the words" (passionate), and that people are drawn to him (charisma/charm). The character was clearly designed specifically for KimuTaku. No one else could've possibly matched him in this role.

u simply speak my mind :D
There were many scenes in Change that clearly showed up Kimura Takuya's acting ability. One particular episode was I think 7 or 8 where he felt anguished and perhaps betrayed but he just couldn't portray the build up of those emotions. So they had to settle for some creative camera work to try to convey the somber, dark mood.
I totally disagree with u on that part, in fact i thought his acting in that particular episode was simply a masterpiece, starting the part when he was shocked at Miyama and then all the way untill the camera showed his crying face at the end of the episode, I actually think they meant on purpose not 2 show his face untill the end, not because they thought he wouldn't be able 2 portray the emotions like u said, but because they wanted u 2 try imagining how he felt with all the shocks he went through and then get shocked seeing the tears on his face (or at least that's how it worked 4 me) i was even impressed at that particular part bec i felt Kimura was able 2 convey the emotions of the character sooo well even if the camera only showed his back.
I also noticed the rings in the final scene (maybe bec i was expecting 2 see them so i concentrated on their hands :P )
I'm really sooooo sorry this drama ended, and hope like everyone else that they make a special or a movie, though i really like the ending this way (not showing whether he was able 2 win the second elections and become a PM again or not)
I think CHANGE is the best drama i've watched this year, I'm really gonna miss it :-(

Finally i'd like 2 thank Massuki 4 providing such great subs

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Post by neofire » Jul 23rd, '08, 19:55

I really enjoy this one, thanks for the uploads and subs.

Anyone see the mild resemblance of the show's title CHANGE and the Change campaign by the current Democratic candidate for the presidential race in US.

I don't know who is copying who, may be it is just coincidence.

Politics is not boring, its the people in there that makes it boring.

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Post by mfeje210 » Jul 24th, '08, 05:33

snow_of_dawn wrote: I don't know what's with trying 2 imagine another actor playing Asakura's role, maybe bec i really find it meaningless 2 do so, but i have 2 say i don't agree with anyone who thinks that another actor could have played Asakura's role better than Kimura. gotta be kidding, that particular role seems like it's been designed specifically 4 Kimura Takuya, and he did a great job portraying it as was expected
i agree with you the role of asakura really fit to kimura and no one else.

and i don't agree to those who said that kimura is not a good actor because of his same facial expression that been seen to all his drama. you see i'm very picky of actors that i like. the one that i attracted to me of kimura is his eyes it's very expressive. by just looking to his eyes you can tell his emotion on it whether his bored, impatient, hurt, sad, anger, love and of course if he wants to flirt you can read it in his eyes. you see i'm a person who like a very expressive eyes not just the facial expression. so far kimura delivered his role to all his drama so natural that it only fit only for him alone. he really internalized those character that in the end it looks so natural and fit only to him alone. so far i had not yet encountered another actor that could move me or make me watched all his drama like kimura.

and i would like to say thank you very much from the bottom of my heart to Massuki for the subbed they had done for us who can't understand japanese.

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Post by avieamber » Jul 25th, '08, 14:07

as much as i hated politics (don't ask) and i thought i'm not gonna enjoy this one, even if takuya is in it, i guess i was wrong.

I actually enjoyed it from the first episode as it picked up towards the end. I'm only up to ep7 now and i can't wait to see how he goes against those *bastards* :P

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Post by wail » Jul 25th, '08, 20:47

I'm slow...I'm only at ep5 coz when I watched ep1 when it started, I was not sold and dropped this till now.. ep 2 to 4 had been entertaining, the exaggerations and oversimplifications of how Asakura impressed and saved the day and was THE chosen one were tolerable and at times moving. Kimura did a great job at his speeches. But now I'm on the fence after ep5.

Ep5 was kitschy. It still has its moments briefly, but the repetitive back and forths at Asakura's house left me rolling my eyes...
(why was Asakura and Miyama absolutely indispensable in Nirasawa's dealings with his daughter when an US official was there to bargain some biggie foreign policies?!! It's really not cute when it's treating us like some 5 yo who find this nonsense funny...and next moment Miyama can totally just walk out and back to the Senate and have a good talk with Tsukioka and go all fangirl as how godly Asakura is) The laughable inaccuracies with the US trade ambassador 'negotiations'...not to say the stereotypical jock/redneck=US politician and slimy 'translator' AND these 2 travel alone doing some biggie negotiation that MAY CAUSE conflict across the Pacific ?!?!?!
r very bugging. Was I to clap my hands in bravo as to how 'refreshing'...
that a trade ambassador would budge in the home of the prime minister and demanded him to recite some figures and got impressed and 'boom' negotiation done miraculously coz he's the Chosen One?!...
we're all fangirsl of Asakura!? The donut tangent was not cute anymore after 4, 5 eps of us knowing how 'commoner' Asakura is and how much he's 'against the flow'. I'm bored and weary.

So please tell me these antics were just an one episode thing. Or else as magnificant as I've heard of Asakura's 20+min speech at the end, I dont want another hour of mild annoyance come ep 6...

Ranting aside, Kimura is still charmingly alluring as repetively as his acting can appear. My compliment to Kimura is his consistency. He always gets the job done. Did he wow me in CHANGE? Not yet and I dont expect him to. But he's sufficient and going into a Kimura drama, we know what we're getting. And even at times he's just being his Kimura self, the drama is not hurt by it coz...it's still interesting to watch KIMURA as Obamawannabe. And part of why Kimura is bulletproof with his not improving acting is that, every role he's in, even if he's just being his Kimura self, it actually added a dimension of interest to see 'HOW Kimura will act/react?!'He just had perfect comical timing even when the scene was not comical...still fun to watch. Again, my bashings pertain to the drama/plot/characters. I am expecting a WHOLE lot fr a Kimura Getsuku that is raved across the board (at least storywise) really hate disappointments in my dramas! :glare: :crazy:
Last edited by wail on Jul 26th, '08, 01:03, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by raven_frost » Jul 25th, '08, 23:47

wail wrote:I'm slow...I'm only at ep5 coz when I watched ep1 when it started, I was not sold and dropped this till now.. ep 2 to 4 had been entertaining, the exaggerations and oversimplifications of how Asakura impressed and saved the day and was THE chosen one were tolerable and at times moving. Kimura did a great job at his speeches. But now I'm on the fence after ep5.

Ep5 was kitschy.
Ep5 was the worst of the episodes if you're talking about quality. Not that the rest rise above it all but I found that particular one hard to sit through. It was a departure from the style of the earlier episodes. Subsequent episodes reverted back to the tone and style set earlier although there tends to be some silliness in almost every one of them.

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Post by seirin » Jul 26th, '08, 08:56

wail wrote: Ep5 was kitschy. It still has its moments briefly, but the repetitive back and forths at Asakura's house left me rolling my eyes...
Well, I think everyone here would agree episode 5 was just nonsense. I fast forwarded most of it. The only thing I found interesting was learning the word "chiwasu". I never heard of the word and never knew it had so many meanings O_o
that a trade ambassador would budge in the home of the prime minister and demanded him to recite some figures and got impressed and 'boom' negotiation done miraculously coz he's the Chosen One?!...
Well, I could kind of understand that part forcibly. When Asakura was elected, even the US president knew he was a puppet. They thought he knew nothing and could easily be pushed over. That's why they went over to "negotiate" thinking he's an easy target to step over since the other cabinets wouldn't bend. But seeing as Asakura knew his stuff they backed off and respected him cuz he learned everything in such a short period. And he explained the situation logically. I doubt the US want to completely cut off trade with Japan.
I am expecting a WHOLE lot fr a Kimura Getsuku that is raved across the board (at least storywise) really hate disappointments in my dramas! :glare: :crazy:
The drama isn't that bad. I enjoyed it the most out of all the dramas out this season. Not many good ones out. Anyhow some comic relief in a political drama is good. I find politics so boring. If it was so serious, I probably wouldn't last through it.

The last episode was the best. I thought he handled the situation very well. He was put in a difficult position. Now if all politicians were like Asakura, the government might be better organized. I know Canada sure needs a good leader. There are so many rants I could make about the government here. I even found the tea issue amusing ^^; That's what I call penny pinching and I totally agree with Asakura.

About Change, there is one very big flaw. How does Asakura manage to memorize all those stacks/boxes of political books and read the huge mountain of documents in such a short time O_o That's impossible even if he never sleeps.

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Post by wail » Jul 26th, '08, 10:11

^ um....but as u said, that's an explanation quite 'forced'. Do you believe in that?! Should we cut the drama this abundance of slacks just coz?! What is most buggin my brains off is it's clear and simple what the writer was trying to convey in many twists and turns, yeah they hope they can explain it off with some fanciful lines but that doesnt make it any logical. I mean I totally can see them trying to give more color and depth to Abe's character, another facet on his personal life, but the character's actions in that situation dragged out to boredom failed to give us more insights *sigh* it didnt add any depth, it's more like a buzzkill when I thought his character will be much more interesting and quirky and substantial than some scenary.

Yeah the US gov may consider him a puppet, but no country is that moronically tactless to proceed as ep5. and frankly there is NO negotiation. I was expecting some just to gratify me at least sitting thro this disaster of an ep, but I didnt get any, and I'm pissed. Is the tea part funny? or the numbed legs sitting jap style?! I cant squeeze a smile.

I mean it's not like ep 2 to 4 were without holes and faults, but they didnt play me as if I lost my head with the sight of charming Asakura. There's enough distractions and the plot was moving fast enough to not give me leisure to ponder on how not really making sense things were.

Frankly, I cant agree this is the best drama lately. Tomorrow may not be as gimmicky or 'innovative' , thus entertaining, I find the script tighter. I'd rather go back to watch Zettai Kareshi if I want entertaining. Yeah it's a shoujo manga adaptation, synopsis was laughable to say the least, but that is a well written one done with honest earnesty. And it treats its trivial theme with more caution care and dedication which CHANGE can use some. Just scanned thro 6, it's better, but not up to par, I still notice the nonsense, there r still parts not making sense (so ALL politicians now see Asakura as their younger incarnation?! Oh PLE-EASE!) things not really well developed plot wise. My biggest compliant is this drama uses politics as a gimmick, and I got enough of the drift that I can guess how Asakura was going to 'resolve' the 'dilemma'. That kill all the fun left for me. If they r just going to have a good time making fun of it, go full speed in that direction and do a witty satire. Dont do a half way job of dumping silly cutesy twists in the midst of pretending this is some substantial look at politics. Yeah politics is boring, but I refuse to compromise my belief that a well executed drama should not be hindered by its theme no matter how dry it seems. A good script is a good script, this one is not exactly there. And my preference in drama is always first and foremost script and the writting.

Again, I'm not saying this is the worst, it's up there, but it's still a disappointment.

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Post by joykimlee » Jul 26th, '08, 15:15

Stopped watching Kimutaku for a few yrs dew to my growing acquired taste for silly high school/college dramas. Gave this drama a try this spring cos the lead's a school teacher. Surprisingly, i liked it very much - entertaining and inspiring.

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Post by seirin » Jul 27th, '08, 04:08

wail wrote:^ um....but as u said, that's an explanation quite 'forced'. Do you believe in that?! Should we cut the drama this abundance of slacks just coz?!
What I mean forcibly is because I doubt a person who bullies will step down so easily. I have no doubt politicians will resort to bullying to get their own way. I think they tried to make politics simple so even 5th graders can understand. None of explanations have all that much depth that make it not understandable. As for being tactless, you think US don't bully other countries or you mean they won't go to the president's house to bully him in person?
I mean it's not like ep 2 to 4 were without holes and faults, but they didnt play me as if I lost my head with the sight of charming Asakura. There's enough distractions and the plot was moving fast enough to not give me leisure to ponder on how not really making sense things were.
Yea they're trying to sell Asakura as a charming guy. But that's for publicity and sometimes I roll my eyes at the over the top campaigns. Anyhow it all boils down to, can he do the job and he did his job well and with heart. It's not just a pretty young guy who flashes his teeth and makes everyone swoon.
Frankly, I cant agree this is the best drama lately. Tomorrow may not be as gimmicky or 'innovative' , thus entertaining, I find the script tighter. I'd rather go back to watch Zettai Kareshi if I want entertaining. Yeah it's a shoujo manga adaptation, synopsis was laughable to say the least, but that is a well written one done with honest earnesty. And it treats its trivial theme with more caution care and dedication which CHANGE can use some. Just scanned thro 6, it's better, but not up to par, I still notice the nonsense, there r still parts not making sense
Tomorrow is a summer drama. I haven't seen it yet. I skimmed a few parts only. I saw ZK and I only liked the first and last episode. The rest was bad. Too much cream puffs and too much mean Riko. Even my friend who watched HK when I suggested said and she enjoyed it but she stopped watching ZK although I suggested she watch it. Actually I would have stopped watching it too if I wasn't waiting for the final episode to watch Night's final moments.
(so ALL politicians now see Asakura as their younger incarnation?! Oh PLE-EASE!)
I'm sure some politicians who went into politics start with a lot of heart. There's many things they want to accomplish, but because government is so corrupt, they lose themselves and give up. Asakura never gave up and put forth his best effort in the face of adversity. Also Asakura has power where others who had heart didn't. I'm sure there were things some of the good hearted policians wanted to do in government when they started but having no power to do it they give up trying. But like I said not everyone went into government with heart. They just wanted power.

As for the tea issue I was referring to was the final episode.
He only had a week left to do something worthwhile. There were many issues he wanted to change but it would take more than a week. All his ideas were trashed cuz there's not enough time. Finally he thought about saving money by stopping serving tea. Seems they spend a lot of money on serving nice tea during meetings but no one drinks it. It's such a waste of money. He said why don't they bring their own flask of tea instead if they want to drink. I agree it's unnecessary spending but everyone over looks. Every dollar spent is tax payers money. They should be more careful with it.
Anyhow I found the final speech pretty touching. I also gave up on politicians. No matter who you elect, they will lie to get themselves elected. After election, most if not all promises are forgotten. And they waste tax payers money. But like he said, if you don't vote, you're not taking responsibility and laying blame. I probably will pay attention during elections and vote from now on but my dilemma is back to square one. I don't know which one is trustworthy to run the country properly.

Overall though, the drama could have been a bit better written even if they try to simply it so children can understand politics. I wouldn't say this was greatest drama I've seen but it's on the okay list.

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Post by wail » Jul 28th, '08, 08:10

^ all I can say u and I have very diff views and tastes in our drama. HK was in the bloody awful pile for me even for the 15 min I seriously paid attention to. :pale: ZK on the other hand had an understandably 'mean' but real enough Riiko, it toned down the romantic shoujo-ness to my taste and it's a delightful entertaining surprise. Cream puff storyline at least has substantial purpose for developing Riiko the character and Riiko/soshi relationship... everything in HK was purpose-less 'fun' (or me yawning and practicing my eye-rolling) :blink

ep 5 'Tactless' as in NO country will let their trade embassador to just trample NEAR let alone into the prime minister's house just coz they thought he's a puppet they can play with. AND no country will let these bullies get away with it and let them near the prime minister house unannounced even if they r US ex footballer's who's played in Rose Bowl/biggie trade ambassador blablablablabla.. my eyes r rolling out of my sockets just speaking of that stinky ep. :crazy:

Change was already way too simplified and fluffy as is. I did sit thro most of the rest on and off as my dear roomie had decided to finish it, and nope it jumped the shark at ep 5 for me. After that, as promising as any ep was in the beginning, I already knew it wont get anywhere more esp with Asakura's tactics, which never convinced me that it'll ever work in any situation at all unless everybody r his fanboys and girls, and apparently the whole universe was. So I have to talk myself mentally into accepting and ohming 'this is kimura the great, asakura the great, this is just a drama, it's not suppose to make real sense, he can do no wrong and everyone will just bow in his greatness...'

I saw the tea part, and yeah nobody is not going to get it first thing writer's just trying to use it as a metaphor for how earnest Asakura the great was on even the most trivial matters. But how the other official was sold with just how good it tasted and thus enlighteded, changed face after split second AND following some very sneering remarks....*sigh* did not make one feather of sense unless he's again in the Asakura worshipping cult, which I'm not.

Yeah, Asakura is a very good guy with a pure, kind soul who doesnt sleep to memorize and read everything he chose to. But he has no political powess to survive, the drama didnt convince me he can stay one day let alone the 50 as prime minister. His tactics on how he handled the stickiest situations r way too naive, ignorant and it bore no ounce of realism that it'll ever work in real life. It's like the drama was set up to be all fireworks and promised for a dazzling Asakura 'how will he tackle it' parade, but every single 'case', the resolution was always just Asakura lifting his pinky and snap all is well, and sadly it stank up the marvelous prologue preceding it for me. Even Asakura's 20+ min speech, I dunno y after all the disppointments ep after ep I still expected I would be wowed off my socks off as to how he's going to inspire ppl to vote, but it's back to the age old 'every vote counts...' um... :| Yeah it's a great feat Kimura did it in one breath, one take, it has its touching moments but we can guess he's going to sob up thanking all the greats working around him BEFORE the speech. it's lacking that extra sth that we've never heard before to make it sth special...now it's just a good drama IF u can ignore the flaws. I cant, it regarded itself as an inspiring serious political drama, so the comical fluff should not be sticking out soo soo sore...so this is subpar imo if the drama itself sets its bar this high.

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Post by seirin » Jul 28th, '08, 17:24

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Fukuda's Low-Key Style Frustrates Japanese
BY SEBASTIAN MOFFETT AND HIROKO TABUCHI

In the hot new Japanese TV drama "Change," Prime Minister Keita Asakura is a dynamic 35-year-old with charisma. He nixes pork-barrel construction projects in favor of more money for child care. After a deadly storm hits, Mr. Asakura rushes to the scene, barking orders to bungling bureaucrats. And he stands up to the U.S. in agriculture trade talks. "I have the responsibility to protect the Japanese people," Mr. Asakura tells enthralled voters. "I am one of you."

Meanwhile, Yasuo Fukuda -- Japan's actual prime minister -- has described himself as "a shadow." When he hosts the Group of Eight in Japan next week, he will be the oldest of the group's leaders, turning 72 this month. Since he took office in September, he has been thwarted or held up in almost everything he's tried to do -- from renewing a mission to help counter-terrorism operations in Afghanistan to appointing a central bank governor.

"I don't feel that he has any leadership whatsoever," says Tomoyuki Matsumoto, 42, who works for an insurance company in Tokyo.

Mr. Fukuda's passive tenure is increasingly frustrating the Japanese, as the world's second largest economy struggles with a falling population. To avoid this leading to declining living standards, economists say Japan needs bold measures including more deregulation to promote faster growth, as well as an overhaul of its social security system. But with a divided parliament and a leader who isn't inclined to take action, Japan could continue its drift until parliamentary elections well into next year.

Mr. Fukuda's struggle stems largely from the split parliament which he inherited. The main opposition Democratic Party, or DPJ, dominates the Upper House which has significant delaying and veto powers. But Mr. Fukuda hasn't come up with imaginative solutions to the bind, and the public mostly blames him and his low-key style: His approval ratings were just 26% in a poll published Monday in the Nikkei newspaper ... ...

That may be why Mr. Asakura's fantasy government is so popular. The weekly show, which starts with an image of dawn rising over Japan's parliament building, has attracted about 20% of TV households in the Tokyo area since it began in May. In an episode before Mr. Asakura's elevation, a young lawmaker talks excitedly of the rise of Sen. Obama, 46, and U.K. Conservative Party leader David Cameron, 41. Japan's stodgy politicians, by contrast, are steeped in backroom politics and out of touch with the nation, he says. "World leaders are getting younger and younger, but look at Japan!" he says. Some Japanese politicians are taking notice. Defense Minister Shigeru Ishiba - at 51, the youngest cabinet minister in a major post - said he was a fan of the show. "There are honestly some parts I empathize with," he told reporters last month. "Politicians need to rethink what they stand for."

credit: jfost@soompi

I'll rant about politics later. There are a lot of problems I have with government. It will be a long rant.

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Post by Ginoru » Jul 28th, '08, 21:02

The Wall Street Journal?!!!! That is amazing! As it is amazing that the joungest cabinet minister in japan is 51 O_O

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Post by bananaloverz » Jul 31st, '08, 04:45

Too bad there is nothing said about the king in the drama.. But I like the end of the story.. It leaves a good message about politics, which of course only a dream. I hate politics!

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Post by Silvestre » Nov 7th, '08, 11:39

ah rise and fall of a man definitely lie on his woman. i think that's quite a bolded message in Change, well, i think that's actually 50% of what this drama is based on. Another 50% is pretty much its politics. I like this drama so much, and i start thinking that Takuya Kimura only takes nicely written story or theme or he somehow has the eyes to sort offered scripts...and damn he always acts so well. this belongs to my best-dramas list.

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Post by yanaliao » Aug 6th, '09, 13:28

I re-watched CHANGE yesterday, of course everybody thinks it's so unrealistic, but then it's a message for the politicans, not only in Japan but in every country. It's just to remind our dear politicians what is their purpose when they first entered politics? When they were still college students, won't they rant about how things aren't going the way they like in the government? I believe everybody started like Asakura-sensei, but then as traditional politicians like Kambaya sensei plots on many things that turns the beaureucrats upside down, it is hard not for people to stay neutral and follow the the wave. This dorama isn't saying that the politicians should do as Asakura-sensei did, but it is imparting a message to every politician to rekindle their principles when they just entered politics, 'coz as you get old with the business, you tend to forget and be comfortable where you are unless you struggle for more power and that includes destabilization plots like Kambaya sensei was did in the series. Yes, the series might be a 'fantasy' but why can't we just absorb what we watch. It feels so great to watch someone CHANGING up what isn't possible. You'll also be inspired with his leadership, his charisma and how he was able to gain respect within his TEAM ASAKURA~

I just wish the politicians in our country would watch this series 'coz whenever our president appears in the broadsheet and on tv, I can only mutter: "What the hell is she saying? It's just crap" so in the recent State of the Nation Address (SONA), I didn't care to listen or read about it in the broadsheet, 'coz who else would believe such a traitor like her? -the end-
Last edited by yanaliao on Aug 6th, '09, 13:40, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by yanaliao » Aug 6th, '09, 13:32

Oh spoiler: It was so stupid of me not to notice but... I didn't realize that Asakura and Miyama-san already got married at the last part! Duh! :scratch: :scratch: Hahaha... I saw the ring in Asakura's left finger and I thought it was odd 'coz Kimura-san never wore a ring that's too simple and unnoticable. hahaha~ It was kinda weird for me when I saw him with the ring when I watched the series for the first time, but I didn't bother to know. But this second time, I thought there's something fishy... I did a rewind and saw the ring on the finger of Miyama-san while she was clapping. *lolz*
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Post by peachydomo » Aug 6th, '09, 20:21

@yanaliao
I didn't realize that either! Sharp eye haha.

Overall I thought CHANGE was a great drama. I'm usually not one for political dramas and sure the plot was probably a really simplified view of politics but it was a nice introduction and interesting to see how the Japanese government operated.

The chemistry between all the cast members made it worthwhile to watch because you have so many great actors in one drama. It was also nice to see Kimura Takuya and Fukatsu Eri together again after that creepy dark A Million Stars Falling from the Sky.

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Post by yanaliao » Aug 13th, '09, 08:27

peachydomo, yeah Change is really interesting. It's somewhat unrealistic but then that's a factor to keep people entertained. I mean, Gokusen was about a teacher trying to tame beasts of class 3-D with her Yakuza background which is also unlikely to happen. While Change roots for a midschool teacher to be the prime minister of the country. It's just entertainment, frankly speaking, I recommended this series to some of my friends and never forgot to tell them that it all starts in EP 5.
It's not about being able to memorize the paragraph 8 sec 13 thingie with Bingham, it was the over-acting reaction of Abe Hiroshi when he knew that his daughter was coming, it delayed the trip of Asakura Sholi to the Beverly hills donuts~

Remember that part when they were hiding behind the table and only their eyes were showing? *lol* Imagine that in cartoons, it was so funny! It's like they were planning something to defeat their opponent...

Anyway, maybe I'm easily satisfied with small funny scenes but it's worth the laugh! *lol*
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Post by nnnc » Aug 13th, '09, 08:57

yanaliao wrote:I recommended this series to some of my friends and never forgot to tell them that it all starts in EP 5.
It's not about being able to memorize the paragraph 8 sec 13 thingie with Bingham, it was the over-acting reaction of Abe Hiroshi when he knew that his daughter was coming, it delayed the trip of Asakura Sholi to the Beverly hills donuts~

Remember that part when they were hiding behind the table and only their eyes were showing? *lol* Imagine that in cartoons, it was so funny! It's like they were planning something to defeat their opponent...

Anyway, maybe I'm easily satisfied with small funny scenes but it's worth the laugh! *lol*
Many criticized episode 5 to be too comical and not realistic. But for me, this is one episode that I keep repeating. Even though the plot about USA & Japan in this episode is a bit unrealistic. But I love the acting and interaction among the team here. Their comedic timings in this episode are just perfect and make them all normal and likable. I also liked what Asakura said to Bingham about his responsibility as a PM of Japan. And the episode ended well with a touching moment between Asakura and one of his secretary.

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Post by yanaliao » Aug 13th, '09, 09:10

nnnc wrote:
yanaliao wrote:I recommended this series to some of my friends and never forgot to tell them that it all starts in EP 5.
It's not about being able to memorize the paragraph 8 sec 13 thingie with Bingham, it was the over-acting reaction of Abe Hiroshi when he knew that his daughter was coming, it delayed the trip of Asakura Sholi to the Beverly hills donuts~

Remember that part when they were hiding behind the table and only their eyes were showing? *lol* Imagine that in cartoons, it was so funny! It's like they were planning something to defeat their opponent...

Anyway, maybe I'm easily satisfied with small funny scenes but it's worth the laugh! *lol*
Many criticized episode 5 to be too comical and not realistic. But for me, this is one episode that I keep repeating. Even though the plot about USA & Japan in this episode is a bit unrealistic. But I love the acting and interaction among the team here. Their comedic timings in this episode are just perfect and make them all normal and likable. I also liked what Asakura said to Bingham about his responsibility as a PM of Japan. And the episode ended well with a touching moment between Asakura and one of his secretary.
Yatta! Another fan of Ep 5!!! It's not just a touching moment between his Secretary, also the other staff which is a part of the puppet team that Kambaya-sensei appointed to work for Asakura Sholi.

*lol* I just remembered when Miyama-san won't allow Asakura Sholi to line up at the Beverly Hills Donut during the first scene... He stomped his feet and looked like a spoiled kid unable to get what he wanted 'coz his mom forbade him~ :w00t:
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Post by Ender's Girl » Oct 9th, '09, 11:05

Take Me to Your Leadah! Leadah!
Drama review: Change (Fuji TV, 2008)


The Cast:
Kimura Takuya, Fukatsu Eri, Terao Akira, Abe Hiroshi, Kato Rosa


In a Nutshell:
Mild-mannered schoolteacher Asakura Keita takes over his late father’s Diet seat and is swept into power as Prime Minister of Japan--but soon finds himself at the center of a political plot hatched by a powerful few to gain control of Government.


(SpoilLert: Moderately spoilerish.)

Politics for Dummies (…and Jdorama Viewers, Too!)

Hmmm.... This drama is riddled with all the ineluctable loopholes of a political fairy tale, and as much as I wanted with all my might for Kimura's character to succeed in that cutthroat world of politics, the implausible situations had me rolling my eyes most of the time. I mean, c'mon: nerdy and naive schoolteacher becomes premier of Japan, and single-handedly (oh, not single-handedly, but aided by a ragtag crew of housemates-turned-"political advisers," oh my!) attempts to turn the tide of corruption and greed that has permeated the highest echelons of government--AND tries to run the world's second largest economy in his spare time!!! Whoopee. :roll

Maybe this drama bit off a tad more than it could chew, as most political fairy tales are prone to doing. I read a comment somewhere saying that Change felt like a 10-year-old schoolboy had been given a textbook on Japanese politics, and was told to go write a script, hehehe. :P I'm rather inclined to agree. I think a major stumbling block for me while watching Change was that Asakura Keita (at least in the first half of the drama) was too... dumbed down to be believable, looking so out of his depth in the legislature--despite his earnest efforts to cope with all his parliamentary obligations. The first half of Change mostly has Keita wandering the Diet corridors looking all... dazed and confused (wink, wink) and asking his secretary Miyama to "explain things to him as if he were a 5th-grader." He also spends far too much time helping Random Disgruntled Citizens who straggle into his office with their personal sob stories, than doing any actual legislation. (That scene in Episode 3 where the pigheaded cat owner detains Keita for hours when he’s supposed to be at some secret powwow with the Seiyu Party bigwigs--major ROLL EYES!!! :cussing: ) The writing plays up the Underdog-Zero-to-Hero archetype to the hilt, but the same tack which worked so perfectly in 2001’s Hero simply misfires in Change. (Curiously enough, Hero and Change were penned by the same screenwriter, Fukuda Yasushi. Does not. Compute. Does not. Compute... :scratch: ) The drama would have benefited from better writing, IMO—and a longer run that would more smoothly chart Keita’s transformation from bumbling do-gooder to a shrewder, more experienced player in the political arena.

I pretty much hated Change’s reductionist approach towards politics. You think you can run a country armed only with Good Intentions and a crash course in Statecraft 101? Man, this really is a fairy tale. And the odds stacked against Asakura Keita & Co. are just too high to be convincingly hurdled within the drama’s short run. Given his inexperience and—well, his obtuseness, Keita is a sitting duck from Day One--I mean, c’mawwwwn--it’s POL-IT-ICS after all. *rolls eyes* :roll And Keita trying to micromanage each thorny issue he comes across--like that jellyfish infestation in Episode 4, or the pediatrician shortage in Episode 6--NOT believable in the least. (Sure, Keita, how... assiduous of you to take home those boxes of files to pore over, never mind you go sleepless for two straight days--here’s an “A” for effort. But what about the other 934,982 needs of your constituency also demanding your attention, ne? You gonna make ALL of them your homework too? You gonna pay a personal visit on every sick kiddo in Tokyo? Durrr...)

Can starry-eyed ideals still make a dent in the moral morass of realpolitik? Just how far are you willing to go, how much heat can you take, how much of your beliefs are you prepared to compromise, how big a part of your soul are you willing to sell--to get the job done, to bring real Change to governance? Okay, good questions, good questions (lol). Then you remember that politics is really one labyrinthine snake pit that swallows you up for not playing by The!Rules!--just as easily as it lavishes power and privilege on the more… politically savvy. The sad truth is that people like Asakura Seita are just the type of quixotic fools who get eaten alive for breakfast by the more seasoned, worldly-wise politicos--then spewed out for the dogs to fight over. Sorry, but Prime Minister Asakura wouldn’t last a day in El Mundo Real.

From Zero to Hero, or Why Nerds Rule, Baby

Still, underdogs ARE underdogs, and as a viewer you find yourself cheering on this lovable, unassuming teacher man with the Mojakura hair (or so dubbed by his precioussss 5th-graders) as he matches wits with Kanbayashi the Kingmaker, that goatee-sporting, deliciously crafty little man (and de facto leader of the ruling party) whose behind-the-scenes maneuvering would put Old Nick Machiavelli (and even Rasputin, heh) to shame (ahhh, Machiavelli--now that’s someone I’d vote for Prez in this day and age, lol :lol ). The earnest and good-hearted newbie public servant vs. the puppet-meister of Japanese politics (J-Pol? hahaha)? Mojakura hair vs. Machiavellian goatee? Hmmm… no contest, right? Right…?

“What decision can a puppet make?” Kanbayashi sneers early on, right after engineering Keita’s instatement as head of government--albeit as an unwitting pawn in a ploy to keep the ruling Seiyu Party in power. The Party’s image has just taken a blow after the incumbent Prime Minister--a lecherous old fart--is forced to resign in the wake of a sex scandal. Kanbayashi, ever the consummate political (party) animal (haha), sees in Keita the perfect crowd-pleasing figurehead and potential image-booster for the Seiyu, Keita being young, (relatively) good-looking, wholesome and untainted by scandal, and possessing an impressive political pedigree… plus he’s a NERD, and we all know that nerds are the most pliable, agreeable creatures in the world, right? Because nerds are naturally insecure and will do anything to gain acceptance with the “in” crowd, right? Lol. :mrgreen:

So how does Asakura Keita outwit, outplay and outlast Kanbayashi the Kingmaker? What’s interesting is that for somebody so devious, having left all bases covered and no stone unturned in his scheming, Kanbayashi’s single (but fatal) miscalculation is that in his hubris, he sorely underestimates Keita--as do most of his party mates. But such is the magic of Asakura Keita, whose hard work and sincerity win over the most cynical of his political enemies and even his own advisors, these career bureaucrats and technocrats who initially write Keita off as a political (and intellectual) lightweight. Change being in the same mold as Hero, the path that Keita takes from Underrated Everyman to Hero of the Day is not a smooth one, but the way he slowly inspires such loyalty and respect in his staff--even without meaning to--can truly tug at the heartstrings.

It may have taken me a few episodes to warm up to the story and the characters, but about midway into the series I was Team Asakura all the way, baby. I suppose such is the charm of this drama, that it slowly erodes your defenses until you have no choice but to capitulate in the end. Both Change and Asakura Keita seem a bit of a joke at first, but somehow they just… weirdly grow on you, lol. Why? Because like Keita himself, this drama has HEART. A whole lot of heart. :thumleft: There’s a scene in Episode 6 where Keita pushes for revisions in the supplementary national budget--revisions that will alleviate the pediatrician shortage in the country. But he does this with an unprecedented audacity that leaves his uncooperative Cabinet flabbergasted, and causes that sneaky snake Kanbayashi to rethink his next line of attack. I was… impressed, lol. :clap: I still think of Change as a (rather ambitious) political fairy tale, but an engrossing and enjoyable one, nevertheless.

The Tipping Point, or Why Nerds Really, Really Ruuule, Baby :D

You really do feel for Keita as the pressures of office, and frustration after frustration take their toll on the man and drive him to the brink of exhaustion, disillusionment, and self-doubt. Being Prime Minister can be the most lonely place in the world, and as the cookie crumbles, Keita finally sees the ugly side of politics in all its unclad (in)glory. Everything starts to snowball from Episode 7 onwards: Kanbayashi shows his hand at last--and exposes Miyama’s own complicity; the country’s pediatrics crisis claims another indirect casualty in somebody close to Keita; then he learns the truth of his father’s part in the bribery scandal… and in the process uncovers a few skeletons in his own Cabinet… And when all of these come crashing down on his slim shoulders, he could just as well be carrying the weight of the whole world. Keita’s near-breakdown at the end of Episode 7 is so painful to watch, because this is the moment he realizes that he is really, truly alone. Oh, Keita. I loved that whole sequence--and oh man, the devastating STILLNESS of it all, while the camera just focuses on his BACK. Wordlessly, he returns from Kanbayashi’s lair to his own office, sagging against that heavy oak desk while his aide breaks more devastating news. Later that evening we see him padding about in the darkened house, the air heavy with his grief. Keita’s composure finally shatters inside his father’s study, where we see him slumped on the floor while clutching that blue Frisbee, and sobbing as if his heart would break… and you know all too well that it already has. Oh, Keita. :cry:

How Keita turns the tables on Kanbayashi and his flunkies makes for a very compelling watch. And that televised address he makes in the drama’s finale... well, it bowled me over, to say the least. Filmed as one continuous shot (clocking in at a staggering 22:20 minutes!!!), this landmark speech is undoubtedly the highlight of the entire drama--and a conversation piece for years to come, lol. This truly is Asakura Keita’s (and the drama’s) finest hour: you don’t see a politician attempting to justify his actions, or an embattled head of government making a last-ditch effort to stay in power. Instead, you see a man pouring his heart out, speaking with such candor and simplicity that you just instinctively KNOW that what he says is the honest truth. Keita, FTW!!! I actually replayed the whole scene just to watch and see if Kimura would periodically fix his eyes on any one point--a giveaway he was using a TelePrompter. The thing is, if there WERE certain spots that had visual cues (and I'm sure there were; if not, either he must have rehearsed the speech two dozen times, or he's a genius with a photographic memory), either way, Kimura sure had us fooled; the entire shot was a study in seamless perfection. Great job in acting + directing + writing + editing. :cheers:

So Keita takes blanket responsibility for his administration’s screw-ups (and boy, I wish more politicians were like him), but makes sure that he DOESN’T go down without a fight. His last act before stepping down as premier is to dissolve Parliament--a bold move that nobody saw coming, not even the viewer, and most of all not Kanbayashi. Game reset, baby. And as the Winds of… Change begin to sweep through the Diet, Kanbayashi concedes defeat with characteristic stoicism, knowing full well all his cards have been dealt, and there are no more aces up his sleeve. Keita’s parting words to him are unforgettable: “Thanks to you, I was able to squeeze the pus out of the political world.” (Mwahahahahahha I love this line!!! And I love you too, Keita!!! :tv: ) But to Kanbayashi’s credit, he receives this potshot with nothing more than an ironic, if slightly rueful grin. Keita, FTW!!! :dance:

State of the (KimuTaku) Nation

Kimura's acting in Change is a tour de force, and further underscores his range as an actor. He’s the best thing about this whole series, and whether the scene calls for comedy or drama, Kimura brings it—and nails every emotion, every nuance and technique required of the character. (Now for my quibble: I didn’t like how Kimura would always twitch his mouth and nose. He’s done it in his other dramas, but here in Change the frequency of it was just so distracting. Dunno if he meant it to be a physical attribute of Keita’s character, but every time his face twitched, I wanted SO badly to go up to my TV set and shove a carrot through the screen. Not kidding. :evil: )

From a purely superficial, looks-driven point of view, this drama is probably Kimura at his... grossest, lol. The nerdy specs and that Afro (or Jap'fro? hehe) hairstyle scream "I’m a deglamorized dweeb!!!" at every turn, hahaha. (I even refused to believe his curls weren’t a wig until I actually read the BTS info. Still, you gotta hand it to the guy for insisting his precious tresses be subjected to that crazy perm!straighten!perm!straighten! switcheroo for each frikkin’ episode.) But man, geek glasses and Jap’fro aside, Keita looked so trim and stylish in those three-piece suits he’d wear to work, heh heh heh. (Sure beat the crap outta those hideous costumes you wore that same year to the SMAP concert tour, eh KimuTaku? Heh heh heh. :twisted: )

Going Straight for the… Jocular (hahaha)

Kimura does grrrreat comedy throughout Change, and his scenes opposite Abe Hiroshi are a joy to watch because they go beyond slapstick humor and cheap laughs. There is real intelligence and purpose in these two men’s repartee-laced dialogue and even their very physical brand of comedy. “That man is funny in a sharp way,” declared my cyber-friend Peggy of Abe Hiroshi, and to this day I have yet to read a more spot-on description of the guy. Bossy, brusque, and brimming with braggadocio, his character Nirasawa is a battle-scarred veteran of electioneering who inspires both awe and exasperation in the people around him--a formidable Frankenstein on perpetual Fight! mode. Nobody does deadpan humor better than this man--NOBODY. Abe Hiroshi, may you live forever!!! *Vulcan salute* :cheers:

But but BUT, I didn't like the clumsy attempts of the writing to cobble in the slapstick humor with the more serious issues in the first half of the drama. Case in point would be the time the U.S. trade envoy, Bingham, visits Japan for official talks. But after negotiations break down, a visibly PO’d Bingham pays a surprise call on Keita (home on his day off), hoping to get Keita to override the Japanese trade panel’s decision. At exactly the same time, Nirasawa’s feisty daughter comes a-calling, with her loafer of a boyfriend close on her heels. A little family drama unfolds (with Keita on hand to referee, natch :roll ), while Bingham and his wingman are left stewing (literally, haha) in the next room, Japan-U.S. relations be damned! Honestly, what a flimsy, unconvincing excuse to cause such a serious diplomatic SNAFU. (Honestly, Keita, HON-EST-LY.) I cannot believe the drama devoted one entire fraykin’ episode (Ep. 5) to this egregiously unfunny “comedy” of errors. The chaotic situation was obviously contrived to force a few laughs, but Keita shuttling back and forth between his two sets of visitors—was just… SOOOO inane, and felt tedious after—oh, 3 seconds. Despite Kimura and Abe Hiroshi’s valiant efforts to keep things interesting, this whole sequence was an abject Writing FAIL!!! (Let’s also throw in: Conflict resolution FAIL!!! Geopolitical sensitivity FAIL!!! Keeping-unsavory-visitors-from-the-Prime-Minister’s-house FAIL!!!) Sure, I’m aware of the Jdoramaverse’s penchant for the uber-slapstick, but J-drama writers ought to remember that screwball comedy that does NOT serve the purpose of the PLOT becomes nothing more than a farce. :stress:

Though I MUST single out the burly white dude who played Bingham: his florid, expressive face and obvious comedic talent had me in stitches! It’s so hard to come by Caucasian acting in Asian productions that DOESN’T make you cringe, so I was pleasantly surprised that Bingham turned out to be such a natural. He certainly knew how to camp it up without letting his character become a cartoon. Good Caucasian cameo, good Caucasian cameo. *wipes away tear* (The actor playing Bingham’s wingman was pretty hammy, but at least he’s fluent in Nihonggo, ne? :whistling: )

Dave vs. Keita: Teh SmackDown! :rambo:

Watching Change inevitably brings to mind comparisons to that OTHER political fairy tale from Hollywood, the 1993 movie Dave, starring Kevin Kline and Sigourney Weaver. Kevin Kline plays Dave Kovic, a presidential double who finds himself installed in the Oval Office after the real Commander in Chief is rendered comatose from a stroke. Dave’s true identity is kept secret by a couple of self-serving senior advisors who wish to keep the status quo in the White House; even the president’s estranged wife (the tough-as-nails Sigourney Weaver) is kept in the dark. At first Dave just plays by their rules, a mute accomplice to this cover-up. But the advisors soon realize they’ve gotten more than they bargained for, as Dave learns to use his newfound power to do some real good for his country.

Dave is obviously a comedy, but the main difference between this film and the drama Change is that the humor in Dave is so seamlessly written in, and succeeds in enhancing the narrative flow instead of disrupting it. There is also a more believable dynamic between Dave and his Secret Service detail (played by the hilariously gruff Ving Rhames), who utters what has to be the most touching line of dialogue: “I’d take a bullet for you,” he tells Dave towards the end of the film. Dave isn’t a great movie, but it’s a lot more consistent with the comedic overtones than Change is. Check it out and see the difference in treatment. :-)

Love Affairs of State, or The Politics of Romance

As Asakura Keita's spirited secretary Miyama, the wonderful Fukatsu Eri is the next best thing about Change, and the whole time I was like, yeah! YOU be the frigging head of government someday! Girl powah, women rule! Lol. The unsentimental, no-nonsense professionalism of the KeitaxMiyama relationship echoes the KuryuxAmamiya team-up from Hero, and in both dramas, the romance is tangential to the main plot. But while the romance takes a backseat in Hero, in Change you could say it’s… barely hanging on to the exhaust pipe, lol. XD Not much romantic fireworks, although Keita and Miyama DO have some cute moments together--like the time she brings him those Beverly Hills Donuts, or the time she drives him back from Fukuoka, or the near-kiss in Keita’s foyer (aieee!!!), or the-ehem-political merger (hihihi) forged in that lovely rooftop garden in the last episode (dammit Keita, ya shoulda kissed her, you nerrrd!!! :alcoholic: ).

But my favorite KeitaxMiyama moment would have to be the one in Episode 8, when a visibly shaken Miyama returns to Keita--and he takes her back, just like that, without censure or condemnation. The two share a rare moment of intimacy inside Keita’s office, a pocket of calm while a political storm rages outside those massive double doors. In this brief interlude, they are no longer Prime Minister and secretary, but simply man and woman. In the inner space of Keita’s arms, Miyama pours out all her pent-up disillusionment and remorse while Keita simply holds her--a gesture as tender as it is emotionally charged. (Oh, Keita, such an admirable display of self-control! Lol.) Then I remember Kimura and Fukatsu Eri from 2002’s Sora Kara Furu Ichioku no Hoshi--rrrowwwrrrrr!!! :w00t: Oh what… different characters they played back then, hihihi.

But what I didn’t like was Miyama sacrificing HER dream to give way to Keita’s. Is it wrong for a woman to nurse political ambitions—especially if she’s smart and competent and has a heart for public service??? Granted, it isn’t wrong to reorganize one’s priorities vis-à-vis a major personal life change (like, oh, falling in love, lol)--and I do hope Miyama believed that this self-effacing, argyle-sweater-wearing, kinky-haired, hopelessly clueless, chain-smoking political greenhorn was bloody well worth giving up her, uh, Diet Dreamz for. :glare: But it really was a letdown to see Miyama’s political career go up in smoke, before it even began… for now, at least. Well, I figgered she could always do a Hillary later on, hahaha. So yeah--I guess it’s all good, baby. :thumright:

Overall, Change ain’t a bad drama. Uneven comedy treatment and logic loopholes aside, I think the other major limitation of Change is the J-drama format itself, which has to cram everything into just 10-11 episodes. Whereas I can imagine this kind of story enjoying more space to breathe and develop within the 16-24-episode K-drama format. I mean, a plot this ambitious (and potentially rich ‘n’ meaty!) works best when accorded the appropriate number of episodes, IMO. But still… not a bad drama. You’ll probably enjoy this if:

1) You’re a Kimura completist;
2) You’re an Abe Hiroshi fan;
3) Your G.Q. (geopolitical quotient, haha) is below the norm for your age group, haha. Which means you won’t get too peeved by the oversimplified approach to politics, yay!

Don’t watch this is if:

1) You’re a political science student, or a political analyst by profession;
2) You’re a REAL politician, haha.

**********

KimuTaku 4 Prez!!! (…or maybe not, lol) :P
The Little Dorama Girl:
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Altius
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Post by Altius » Oct 12th, '09, 05:27

i'm not a fans of any actors...

but still i feel the drama is very good and touching... nothing imposible
still i recommend it even for political students

minimin
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Joined: Jan 24th, '05, 14:21

Post by minimin » Oct 18th, '10, 08:53

After watching the depressing Sora Kara Furu Ichioku no Hoshi, I felt the need to watch something lighter and I just realize I have this drama lying on my harddrive for over a year and how perfect it has Fukatsu Eri! *.* & Abe Hiroshi.

I didnt know what to expect. I hate politics-related thing so I thought I'd hate this, but I didnt. It was actually very entertaining and interesting. I am not a KimuTaku fangirl and dont find him as handsome as some people say, but I admit he's very charismatic onscreen. I think it's his eyes which moves you when they're needed to. I especially loved the chemistry between him and Eri, and Abe. KimuTaku was perfect for the role and I cant think of anyone who would've been a more convincing Asakura Keita, especially that uncut scene in the finale.

Oh, but I agree that his expressions are overuse, though I think all actors tend to reuse/recycle expressions when acting? Even normal people does it. Most of the scriptwriters of his dramas probably wrote the script for him (BTW he only does FujiTV and TBS).

Overall this is a good drama. Could've been better, given there's Eri and Abe. But nevertheless each and every episode made me want to watch more and has made Politics become interesting.

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am00339
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Location: New York

Post by am00339 » Feb 18th, '13, 05:48

I hope there is a Change 2 in the works... enjoyed so much on all levels :)

noobs
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Post by noobs » Feb 18th, '13, 13:59

:thumright:

Peggy
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Location: USA

Post by Peggy » Feb 18th, '13, 20:13

As soon as I saw the first shot of Kimura and that hairstyle I realised this was one written just for him and his character and I then decided this was a Political PARODY. After that it all went very well and Kimura did his thing and Abe was delightful and between them they made such humor and comedy.

It's just too bad they did not emphasise the romance between Eri and Kimura. I think he was still then in the throes of being a husband and father and did not want to do great love scenes. However, I do know that Eri is the one leading lady who gives him slight chills in any close encounters. Others are just actresses for him, but there is a chemistry with Eri....he said so.

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YukawaManabu
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Joined: Jun 27th, '13, 15:42

Post by YukawaManabu » Aug 11th, '13, 14:25

I always doze off during Keita's loooong speech. The series was OK overall. I will watch anything that has both Kimura AND Abe-san. Quite the duo. :)

Peggy
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Post by Peggy » Aug 20th, '13, 19:23

Well enders girl,
I have just been re reading your long posting about Kimura and Eri and Change. It was interesting all over again. Your remarks are spot on of course. It is still a good drama even without the hot romance scenes that we all enjoyed in the dim past as in PRIDE !!!!!I
Don't know where you are these days my dear but I suspect you have done a Time travel stunt and probably you are one hundred years into the future. have a good time but do come back and tell us all about it soon. I miss you very much EG.

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