|Exploring the perception and treatment of mentally-challenged youth and their similarities to juvenile delinquents in Japanese society, this drama series follows the trials and tribulations of a group of adolescents in a work/study program for mentally-challenged teenagers. Although the program's intention is to gently "normalize" them for introduction in society, the group is subject to constant physical and mental abuse unbeknownst to their parents and teacher, Ms Hagawa. However, the friendship between Towa, a naive but unusually articulate member of the program, and Arisu, a rebellious schoolgirl, helps both of them learn to overcome their troubles. Features a star-studded cast of current popular youth idols.|
|Soundtrack and Theme Songs (2)|
|1. ||Inochi no Betsumei [Nakajima Miyuki 中島みゆき]|| [ LYRICS ]|
|2. ||Iro 糸 [Nakajima Miyuki 中島みゆき]|
|Drama Reviews (10)|
The review section may contain spoilers! Please understand
that you may find out about this drama's endings and plots!
|1. ||Definitely a dark drama, hard to swallow!!! [Rating: 6/10]|
First of all, when I watched this I just concentrated on the drama itself and not on the issue of whether or not the portrayal of mentally handicapped people was correct. That has no weight in my opinion of the drama whatsoever.
Let me say that I consider this to be darker than "Kono Yo No Hate"(End of the World). That said, this drama may not be for the average drama fan. I watched it because I am a huge fan of both Hirosue Ryoko and Noriko Sakai but what I got was totally unexpected. BTW, don't anticipate a lot of extensive acting from Sakai since she's more of a supporting actor here.
I didn't know whether to like or hate this drama. Some scenes early on made me want to stop watching it, while many of them made me cringe. There were some heartfelt/teary-eyed moments that did encourage me to keep watching and made me thankful to have gone that far to see it.
The character of "Towa" is the best thing of the whole drama. I did feel satisfied at the end during the credits but the ending isn't the only thing that matters.
You'll just have to see for yourself!
|Reviewed by biga816 on 28 July 2002|
|2. ||Great Drama [Rating: 9/10]|
This is one of the best dramas that I've watched up to date. The storyline is grabbing, yet dark. The actors' portrayals of the mentally retarded teenagers were done excellently and realistically. But even more so, the characters were portrayed in such a manner that the viewer will really feel touched by them especially Towa, played by Ishida Issei.
There were some parts of this series that were very difficult to watch because of the angst involved, but nonetheless I highly recommend this series.
I'm not sure why others above have given it such poor reviews because definitely .. the storyline and acting were top-notch. This series is not for those who don't like dark dramas and some themes in this are rather mature. It's one of those series that you won't forget.
|Reviewed by donna8157 on 3 March 2005|
|3. ||I´ve seen some doramas by now but this is the wor [Rating: 1/10]|
I know that only those people who like a series put that much effort in by throwing in a review and a vote. Positvely, of course. But this series is so bad that I thought I had to review it and give a correct vote for it.
I am aware that disabled people are being discriminated, exspecially by ignorance of the media in Japan and I give the makers credit for trying to make a difference. But this is a little too drastic and shocking I would say. I admit I only wanted to watch this dorama because of Ryoko Hirosue but even her appearence was not able to raise it for me!
|Reviewed by Lancome on 26 January 2006|
|4. ||Seija no koushin [Rating: 9/10]|
Despite the fact that I had no English subs, I got attached to the characters, especially Ishida Issei's character. He really had a heart of gold, yet his life was so full of tragedies but that never stopped him from being a good friend and person. Masanobu Ando's role as the quietly intense musical genius is also noteworthy - his anger at the world really came through.
Superb acting across the board. This was a stellar cast!
Before viewing, set tissues next to you, 'cos you'll need them! But your funny bone will get exercise, too :)
|Reviewed by aesthetic reasons on 17 November 2004|
|5. ||About the drama [Rating: 10/10]|
It's a very touching story about mentally retarded kids. The world is full of suffering and pain, but there are a little happiness and kindness too. All the kids are like little children, who don't want to do nothing wrong, but they always in trouble. And about that they have to suffer. I love this drama, it's my favourite, because it has a great story about the real life.
You have to watch it, and change your mind about handicapped people. Because there's a big bad wolf in every people, like in Takegami's heart.
|Reviewed by Andro on 26 July 2005|
|6. ||Worthwhile to watch [Rating: 8/10]|
I'm a big fan of Issei Ishida, just that I can't find any more of his vcds around, so when I found this before Sg stopped selling Jdoramas, I was very happy..
It's true that this VCD set touches on a sensitive issue, how we face the mentally impaired in our world. It also brings awareness to the fact that these people do get abused because of their inabilities.
Great acting by Issei Ishida and a pity that Ryoko Hirosue had only a brief acting period in the drama.
|Reviewed by Saki on 2 August 2002|
|7. ||Super Cell Phones... [Rating: 6/10]|
Decent Drama... Seemed realistically scripted as it pertained to the overall plot... But of course they had to exaggerate certain things for entertainment value... How long did that cell phone last? I doubt he ever charged the batteries on it... And how did he see her jump and time his jump to get her into the pool???
|Reviewed by TomoyoN on 6 February 2006|
|8. ||dark but great drama [Rating: 9/10]|
I love this drama, though it's definatly not for everyone. I became very attached to the characters and all the actors did a good job. Some parts made me angry and sad, but there were parts that made me laugh too. If you can handle it, it's worth a watch.
|Reviewed by misato-chan on 2 May 2005|
|9. ||fight for them~ [Rating: 9/10]|
i like this drama! it's a little silly in the beginning, i thought of stoppin, but in the end i was attached to it..
a very emotional drama..
|Reviewed by juliana_phang on 9 June 2004|
|10. ||Not your normal cup of tea [Rating: 4/10]|
Quite a dark drama. A bit like Miseinen. Not the main stream kind of drama. Not for those who like happy shows.
|Reviewed by piglet44 on 15 April 2002|
|Comments From Users (38)|
This section may contain spoilers! Do not proceed if you
do not want to read about this drama's endings and plots!
|1. ||Comments by Myri [Rating: 10/10]|
I've just watched the last episode and you can't imagine how I feel. You just can't! It's impossible if you didn't see this drama. Maybe it's because I'm still moved, but I dont think there's another drama touching like this. I'm arrived to think that a mentally challenged guy is my hero and that life is agrodolce, just like this drama shows. Everybody, I suggest to watch it. The protagonists are so sweet... Towa, a buy who has a love story with a "normal" girl and Ren, a "normal" guy who pretend to be mentally challenged to be near his sister and Taeko, a girl raped by cruel Mr. Manager. But also the evils are forgiven at the end (well, maybe not one ^^"), because Towa is able to forgive... and how we couldn't? He's innocent, sweet and fair. In short, a mentally challenged guy who makes girls go crazy ;) ok, I admit it, I've a crush on Towa-kun! Ahh, but words are useless. It's a wonderfull story and you HAVE to watch it. Please, trust me!
|2. ||Comments by blakmetalik [Rating: 8/10]|
For me, watching this show was like watching a train wreck over and over. I was helpless to stop it but couldn't tear my eyes away from it.
From my experience working with mentally challenged kids, I do feel the show portrays them in a stereotypical manner. They are not simply "innocent angels." However, the performance by the main cast is excellent, especially by Ishida Issei. I also admired the themes of friendship, self-respect, and making a stand, even if the rest of the world seems to be against you.
Overall, I recommend this show, though the wretched abuse the characters go through can be suffocating to bear. It isn't until the very end that you're allowed to breathe.
|3. ||Comments by donna8157 [Rating: 9/10]|
A truly superb series with great acting and an involving storyline. It's atypical of the normal JDrama because of its dark and mature themes, however don't let this deter you from watching this show. Each of the characters will touch you through what they say and how they act, especially Towa-kun. His simple-mindedness and ideals remind us of an innocent child.
This drama made me feel some very intense emotions ranging from anger, frustration, admiration, sadness, etc. I don't think any other drama has been able to evoke so many different feelings before. You should definitely give this drama a watch.
One series that you definitely will not forget. Highly recommended!
|4. ||Comments by groink [Rating: 9/10]|
This drama breaks many of the JDorama stereotypes, which I find refreshing. This is Issei's greatest work! His portray as a mentally challenged adult is incredibly convinsing. The mentally challenged people are abused in the story which most drama fans may have a problem with. However, I feel a story like this must be told so that the JDorama fans are aware of the situation. Not all dramas are romantic, you know? BTW, I didn't like Noriko-chan's performance in this series.
|5. ||Comments by Lancome [Rating: 1/10]|
Worst I ever seen. Usually it takes a whole episode or two to raise my interest and to get started (addicted) into a series. This particular one took me THREE (by the end of episode three honestly speaking) and declined in tension and plot ever since to an all time low. After the eighth episode it was only a drag of continuing and I only watched it to the end because I had downloaded it completely.
|6. ||Comments by PoTaToE [Rating: 7/10]|
even though i don't think it portraited how really metally ill-ed people r in real life (meaning tat they seemed smarted than the ones i've seen in real life), i thought tat this drama did just enough to tell a good story with a different twist than most dramas. although hard to watch at some parts, it showed the true meaning of friendship and makes watcher think of our actions towards one another.
|7. ||Comments by g_hunter1 [Rating: 8/10]|
This is truely a sad, dark drama. This drama involves handicapped individuals who shine with their pride to overcome hardships. If you can't watch this because of all the evil, you should wait it out till the end where it becomes a bit brighter. You even start questioning things about society and its flaws. You just have to surpress the bad wolf inside of you.
|8. ||Comments by lawsco [Rating: 10/10]|
Kanashii & very dark. Hard to take at times but absolutely worth watching! One of the few I've rated @ 10. I hope the lead actor got an award for this because he was exceptional in every way! I can't say enough about this drama. Superlative story, thought provoking, great acting. Recommended w/out reservation!
|9. ||Comments by tetsukei [Rating: 6/10]|
Life is nothing but pain. That seems to be the only message of the show. Well filmed, but too distressing to be of much entertainment. Sigh, you'll grow sad if you were to watch such a drama. All the evils of the world packed into one.
Humour 3/10 Story 7/10 Actors 7/10 Music 6/10 Thrill 7/10
|10. ||Comments by unloko_007 [Rating: 10/10]|
I REALLY liked this one
because it showed a man even though he was
mentally handicapped could change peoples lives,and i felt sorry for him through the show
because he took the blame for everything
and his best friend died ,but yet he kept going with a smile on his face.
|11. ||Comments by stargirl [Rating: 9/10]|
I love this drama because of the actors but the storyline is very touching as well. It kind of gives the audience a background as to how handicapped people are treated and how the cope with life's challenges.
|12. ||Comments by moonchyld [Rating: 8/10]|
I've always liked Japanese films & dramas for its brutal honesty, rawness and its distinct kind of sensitivity in portraying certain issues. Powerful performance from its cast.
|13. ||Comments by kamikaze54 [Rating: 10/10]|
One of the best dark dramas I have seen. Although many people don't seem to like this drama. I dunno why. Wonderful acting by Ishida Issei. Very touching storyline.
|14. ||Comments by Purple_Dorama [Rating: 9/10]|
This is a very sad story about the mentally challanged kids. I really enjoyed the storyline. The acting was perfection. I liked every actor's performance.
|15. ||Comments by zenith777 [Rating: 8/10]|
This Jdorama has many good story conflicts that taught us about friends, pride, greediness, and humanity. Basically all humans has the same heart.
|16. ||Comments by Andro [Rating: 10/10]|
One of the darkest dorama I ever seen. But it's my favourite and couldn't stop it watching again and again. It's a must-seen-dorama.
|17. ||Comments by LoveMonster [Rating: 10/10]|
An incredibly touching and thrilling show. Well-developed characters, unique concept that works well. Very very underrated series.
|18. ||Comments by romi510 [Rating: 10/10]|
A very dark drama, not your mainstream type. Really great acting and story line. And a very very Kawaii Hirosue Ryoko!
|19. ||Comments by ct_subang [Rating: 7/10]|
a truly sad story abt mentally challenged youths growing up in a community...u have to feel sorry for them...
|20. ||Comments by loveaomori [Rating: 8/10]|
nice acting from the whole staff, it's interesting to watch a different type of drama sometimes.
|21. ||Comments by Bsalez [Rating: 7/10]|
Learn something about Handicaped ppl here...Quite Touchy series this one bit dark but ok
|22. ||Comments by PinkSpider [Rating: 7/10]|
hate this one so much...
gial got rape..
damn i hate rape drama...
|23. ||Comments by Tokibaka [Rating: 10/10]|
Issai Ishida is a genious when it comes to acting.
Really strong drama.
|24. ||Comments by aYa haYashi [Rating: 6/10]|
jz finish watched dis drama.. touching story..make me cried..huhuhuhuh
|25. ||Comments by strawberryfzz [Rating: 9/10]|
Intense at times but compelling. Fell in love with Ando Masanobu <3
|26. ||Comments by biga816 [Rating: 6/10]|
Darkest drama I've ever seen. Hard to swallow yet poignant.
|27. ||Comments by juliana_phang [Rating: 9/10]|
it's not that bad after all, great performance by issei
|28. ||Comments by NuOy [Rating: 8/10]|
I think Ishida Issei is good acting in this drama.
|29. ||Comments by maguro666 [Rating: 8/10]|
very good acting but rather dark story...
|30. ||Comments by Dorochive [Rating: 6/10]|
Good start, but ended abnormally.
Read all 38 comments from users
|Users who voted for this drama (13)|
i just did some research and learned that this was based on a true story that happened in 1996 or 1997. it's known as the mito incident. it's really shocking that what happened in this drama actually happened in real life
A very sad drama...maybe too much for the usual drama-fan. If you want to cry and go through terrible times with the people this drama's right!
It's the darkest drama I ever seen, but one of my favourites. I absolutely love it. It has a great story, and the characters are great too.
I've falled head first for this series, it touches something within me which makes it almost irresistible^^ I love this series!
one of my favorite dramas. Great acting and story. I wanted to keep watching until the end.
Superlative acting by the lead actor in accurately portraying a mentally challenged youth.
This is totally a memorable drama. Lot's of tears and cry.
|8. ||aesthetic reasons|
I didn't want it to end - it was that good!
I love Noriko Sakai