Sunday, April 14, 2013

Shifting Tactics: Need More Jdramas!

Just a note on my recent silence: I have writer's block! (Not really) It's more like, I'm too lazy to actually write as fast as I watch dramas. And here's why! I am giving up Kdramas for the time being. Nooo, that's not completely true either. Truth is, I will probably give Gu Family Book a weekly attempt just to keep up with some part of the currently airing Kdrama society, but I decided to make a conscious effort to watch less Kdramas, and more Jdramas, Tdramas, and heck - if anybody knows any good Chinese dramas, I will watch those too! 

Why this sudden shift in drama watching tactics? Because I'm feeling an impending Kdrama death. Shows that I know are good, or should be good, I do not like. Dramas that I know are unique, I do not enjoy. Maybe I'm over-saturated. I need a change of pace. Plus, I owe it to myself to learn (hah!) more about other cultures, not just Korean. 

Current Stats

According to my master list over at, I have now seen a grand total of 4 Taiwanese dramas. Wow.. Nobody be too shocked at that amazingly large number. 

And, for Japanese dramas, a modest total of 17. 

Compare this to the 63 odd Kdramas I have seen in just the past year and a half alone. I think I have some making up to do. All suggestions are welcome! Please help!


  1. OMG I totally hear and feel ya, remember my slump? I'm (semi) back, but still very slow because I'm really only watching Jang Ok Jung and forcing myself to finish Ad Genius and eventually, That Winter.

    Jdrama-wise, what do you feel like watching now? More drama-heavy shows or those on the lighter/funny/comedic tones?

    If you're up for oldies, omg check out that epic one I just finished revisiting Tentai Kansoku, which is simply all-heart (and great friendships). Similar undertones might be Last Friends, Honey & Clover - not sure if you've watched them though!

    If you're thinking of more drama, KimuTaku better works were CHANGE, Karei naru Ichizoku and Nankyokyu Tairikyu though I've also heard plenty good points about his oldie A Million Stars Falling From the Sky (which personally - one day...). Similar undertones would be Flowers for Algernon, Sekai no Chuusin..., To The One I Love and Nagareboshi.

    If you're thinking of quirky, have you watched Ryuusei no Kizuna? I actually liked that one aha. Similar undertones would be Antique and Hotaru no Hikari.

    I hope this helps! :)

    1. Thanks for the recs! I've added a small handful to my plan to watch list, so hopefully they will all be fabulous (or at least just what I'm in the mood for?) We'll see!

      I do get a little turned off sometimes by the over-the-top acting or overly sentimental storylines (or the combination of both) that I find every now and then in Jdramas - but I think I am mostly willing to give anything a try. :)

  2. From the ones that I have seen and you haven't, I'd recommend giving Majo Saiban, The Quiz Show and Don Quixote a go.

    1. That reminds me.. haha.. I have started Don Quixote twice now and both times I never finished episode 1. I think I was in the wrong mood. I will finish it someday!

  3. I'm in a bit of a Kdrama rut, too. It's the Taiwanese shows I'm really feeling these days—they're like Korean dramas, only with none of the bad parts =X Their characters actually have sex, are believably threatened with violence, and hardly ever exhibit aegyo behaviors.

    1. Lack of aegyo.. I've noticed that too. I am seem to have a higher tolerance for Taiwanese soap-opera style than I do when the same things happen in Kdramas. Who knows why. I'm still exploring these genres.

      I started Autumn's Concerto though!!! *drools*

  4. Autumn Concerto is indeed a must, very melo and quite classic in its plotline, but I don't remember enjoying any melodrama that much since reading Judith McNaught as a girl. Or perhaps I enjoyed Vanness? Whatever. I'm very curious to read your review as soon as you have finished watching it - unless by then you still suffer from the writing block. ;)

    Here are my humble recommendations for Tw and J-dramas:
    1. Down with Love - taiwanese. Nothing new, nothing earthshaking, but I personally loved it. A rom com with a heroine one would kill in the beginning - voice, behaviour, looks - and hug tight by the middle - I know I fell for her, in a very non-gay manner - a very decent hero and two adorable kids, one of whom the super beloved kid of Autumn Concerto. Acting seems forced in the beginning, but improves tremendously on going. You might give it a try.
    2. Starlit - tw. Quite underrated and mostly unknown. It's a very good melodrama thought, well acted, modern and relatable.

    As for japanese:
    - Kurosagi (one of my oldest loves)
    - Long Love Letter (I know, I have a true fixation for this one. If you're ready for some atrocious special effects and terrible music, the rest is awesome, at least in my opinion. Acting, story, characterization. A drama you either love at once or drop at once.
    - Tumbling - don't be deterred by the idea of a bunch of guys wearing ludicrous tight leotards. This drama is surprisingly good and feeling-good.
    - Stand Up!! - some big names when they were barely adolescents. Terribly funny.
    - Orange Days - if you liked Tatta Hitotsu No Koi you'll like this one too. By the same author, just as delicate and sweet.
    - Q10 - only if you're into WEIRD stuff. It can be viewed as a masterpiece in its genre or as the oddest bore. I suppose both opinions are valid, while I personally loved it.
    - Strawberry on the Shortcake - surprising, unpredictable, disquieting. Try it. :)

    By the way... I am going to leave K-drama be for a while too. I can't stand the melo trend, nor am I into flower boys, unless they shut up. Who knows, we might meet for a taiwanese watching. ;);)

    1. Sounds like some good options. I will try Down with Love then once I'm through with Autumn's Concerto. And probably Orange Days will be my next Jdrama, since so many people say great things about it. Thanks!

      What's up with this Kdrama melo trend? I enjoyed it for a while, but now I'm melo-ed out. I was hoping Gu Family book wouldn't be quite as dramatic either, but now that we're well into the main storyline, it's just as dramatic as ever. I wanted something light. So far, only the new Itazura na Kiss is doing the trick for me. I must be going into the 'love cuteness!' phase again.

  5. Hi Rosie :)

    Looking from your drama list, I would recommend Hotaru no Hikari and Brother Beat. Both are rom-coms, but with a little family drama in Brother Beat.

    If you're up for a bit of mellow, there's the ultimate tear-jerker 1 Litre of Tears or my recent favourite Itoshi Kimi E (this one is mostly due to my bias for Fujiki Naohito) hehe

    1. I definitely plan to watch 1 Litre of Tears! Sometimes, a known tearjerker can be just the thing. I just haven't found a good time slot on my schedule that will allow me a few hours by myself to wail and sob in private. As soon as I do though.. xD I love Ryo, so it's gonna be awesome.

      I'll check out the other ones you mentioned too. Thanks!