ON ep1 [first impression]


**No proper screencaps since I decided to post this right after watching it on dailymotion.

For a 2hr special pilot, this is unfortunately quite forgettable and draggy.

Or I’m probably growing more and more picky.

Firstly, I felt cheated by the trailer. I came in wanting a dark crime drama, instead, I got a semi light hearted one. The cases have potential as the killing methods are pretty gory (trying to ignore the fact that the slash wounds and bruises don’t even look half as realistic as in the US series). Unfortunately, the overall tone of the drama really kills the mood. I wish they had followed the WOWOW concept with darker approach. A proper meeting with a proper discussion, instead of talking lightly like a bunch of high school students. Hello? Someone’s actually been killed? They only start acting like cops when one of their own gets killed.

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There’s one thing I really don’t like in Japanese cop dramas. Unwilling cops or annoying ones, acting like a spoiled brat. Less than 10 mins in the show, already spotted one (wondering why they always pick Johnnys to take these roles). Am I asking too much? For once, I just want a normal police team, working towards solving the case, as they should, with minimal attitude problem. For example, the team in Ishi no Mayu or Chicago PD. No spoiled brat, no annoying character, just a normal proper police force. You know what’s worse, later in the episode, they try to redeem this annoying character by giving him some self-righteous lines. It just doesn’t work for me.

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Background music sometimes doesn’t fit the atmosphere too. For example, when they first find out one of their colleagues got killed, the fast-paced piano piece doesn’t go well with the scene at all. Even during the police meetings, another fast-paced music playing in the background, it’s loud to the point I can’t really focus on what that forensic guy is talking about. I’m not sure whether they want us to take this show seriously or it’s the other way round. Surely they were selling a darker image in the trailer, right?

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 Another downside is Haru, her character/acting is quite plain except for that shichimi (pepper) obsession. Bit disappointing actually. I was expecting more because she isn’t bad in Asa ga Kita. She doesn’t seem to have much to do in Sekai Ichi (last season) so I haven’t seen anything that stands out from her yet, in terms of acting. Here I thought she would redeem something and prove she can do better, but looks like there’s nothing special about her character here. I don’t see significant difference from when she’s in Sekai and here. I’m also expecting some kind of ‘wow’ effect during the revelation of the real killer but let’s just say, nothing of the sort. Her character Hinako seems to be troubled by a dark past (based on the dream? in the opening) but she doesn’t look tormented (maybe not yet). She’s also supposed to look amused at the moment when bad guys turned ‘on’ their switch to evil. However, no slight smile or anything, expressionless for the most part, so I can’t comprehend what exactly is she feeling. Not even a subtle expression.

I’m sorry if this post turned out to be a rant more than a review. Guess I expected too much. I’m not writing this off immediately, giving this another chance so I’ll decide after ep2 whether to continue or drop it.

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5 thoughts on “ON ep1 [first impression]

  1. I’m also wait for sub for this one agree with you that she really good in asa but her drama with ohno not so impressive maybe in asa she had aoi and tamaki that two really great in they role.

    so bad this subtitle for new season and raw seem have a promblem i can’t watch
    100% understand story with out japan sub not even have to talk about translate haha.
    some word really killing me i cant undertstand 2-3 word and i miss like 2-3 min what they really talking about,why are you so hard japan?
    sry for my rant by the way.

  2. Maybe there’s a glitch with jpsubber as the subs for recent new dramas are missing. Hope they’ll fix it soon.

    Maybe it’s just me, I think it’s bit too soon for Haru to take on a lead role. Her character in Asa ga Kita isn’t that challenging tbh and I know asadora is often used as platform to introduce new younger actresses, who are then pushed beyond their limits. So unless this new character actually has an obvious quirky trait, she’s gonna be plain/stiff throughout, few smiles here and there but otherwise, expressionless. Except if he/she has the ability to use subtlety as their strong points such as Kuroki Haru (now she’s one of those who’s really good in playing characters that don’t necessarily stand out but still charming and memorable). Haru’s pepper powder obsession gets old fast in this first episode. I can’t remember any particular moment where I feel like “Now this is where I think she’s got potential!” So here’s hoping she’ll improve in the upcoming episodes.

    Another thing that prevents me from liking this show is this constant annoying character which makes me wanna fast forward everytime he appears. Hopefully he doesn’t stay that way.

  3. best police drama for me is Gaiji Keisatsu real police work in that drama is show if japan really want to go real they can do it even better than west side too bad it to heavy and too real for most of Japanese and asian audience.

    really enjoy you review give me a lot of thing about j-drama.

    i really wait for your Sukina.Hito.ga.Iru.Koto first impression
    i have it for 2 days but still not sure about it -*-

  4. I’ve seen Sukina and it’s basically a typical shoujo drama, which normally, I’m not into (^^;) A typical getsu9 and reminds me of Koinaka (because of the summer-ish vibe). 3 guys and a girl staying together and I’m gonna bet that she falls in love with the jerk (middle brother) lol (as in most shoujo anime/manga plot). I probably won’t continue but I’ll write up my first impression anyway, since I took the time to watch it.

  5. She is supposed to be bland, later in the show they reveal that Haru is autistic, has problem with emotions and is basically faking all of her interactions. Agree on the righteous cop – he is very annoying.

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