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SP [エスピー]


Drama Details
Security Police
Season:Fall 2007

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TV Station:Fuji TV
Duration:11 Episodes

Okada plays Kaoru Inoue, a member of a police escort division. Ever since losing his parents at a young age, he has possessed heightened senses and a photographic memory. He also has other skills, such as analyzing footprints. His boss is being played by Shinichi Tsutsumi.

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Actor/Actress Cast (8)
Okada Junichi
Inoue Kaoru
Tsutsumi Shinichi
Ogata Soichiro
Maki Yoko
Sasamoto Eri
Iida Kisuke
Kamio Yu
Matsuo Satoru
Egami Shingo
Hirata Atsuko

Related Links (1)
1. Official Website

Drama Reviews (7)
The review section may contain spoilers! Please understand
that you may find out about this drama's endings and plots!

1. rationale behind the plot and storyline [Rating: 7/10]
Minna san! Hello! i watched the drama without the special episode which I am unable to find at this point (April 2009) in KL. however, with regards to the open-ended plot etc, i think that the
explanation below should suffice to explain why the drama was the way it was - APPARENTLY it'll all be explained in the special episode.

"Fuji TV's Saturday night drama series "SP" will be transformed into a one-shot special on April 5, airing at 9:00pm. The series ends its 11-episode run this week, but so far, it has averaged 15.0% ratings despite its late time slot (11:10pm-11:55pm).

The action drama is scripted by Kazuki Kaneshiro ("GO") and directed by Katsuyuki Motohiro ("Odoru Daisousasen"). It stars Junichi Okada, Shinichi Tsutsumi, and Yoko Maki as special police bodyguards.

According to producer Ichiro Takai, the special episode will cover the original 11-episode series, but it will be re-edited and the timeline will be rearranged. It will also reveal a "secret" that is left undisclosed in the original, leading to some additional scenes that have already been filmed. Takai hopes the new version will appeal both to first-time viewers and the show's regular audience."

but i must admit that some of the scenes were really clearly not synchronised at all....if you look at the scene where the Tokyo Governor gets shot in the press conference room - bodyguard in back moved in first shot scene but when the SP fell to the ground, bodyguard in back was standing still. I mean like...HUH?
Reviewed by lizakajang on 7 April 2009
2. Dumb Ending and horrible subtitles [Rating: 7/10]
This was a reasonable drama, and the hospital series was pretty good. A bit like Japanese MacGyver.

However, the twists didn't make sense, especially at the end. Come on, even amateur story writers know that if you want to have a twist you have to plant some seeds earlier.

English subtitles (QueerBeet) were so bad I switched them off and had to rely on my poor Japanese. I don't know how they get away with selling a DVD with English subtitles that are nonsensical. It was almost as if the "translator" stuck the script into an internet translator and just copied that in without any verification. Most disappointing. Oh, and all Japanese names came out in the subtitles as Chinese names! Geez, just leave the names alone, fgs!

Being a classical music lover, I enjoyed some of the choices of music, but it was a little intrusive at times (I find there is too much music in Japanese dramas generally, making it difficult to hear the dialogue), and often it didn't match the action. For instance, there was some really aggressive Shostakovich (my favourite composer) that didn't suit the scene where the characters were just standing around the office talking!

Worth a look if your Japanese is good and you can forgive the dumb tricks.
Reviewed by justjuice on 9 April 2008
3. Stylish [Rating: 7/10]
Although this drama has some pretty big names, this is one of the few dramas where I felt like the director is the real star of the show(IWGP is the only one I can think of that betters this one). It's all very pleasing to the eyes and ears(great orchestral pieces, even got the one from 2001: A Space Odyssey!). The problem is that although having a unique style is refreshing, the drama lacks a good storyline. Actually it gets down right ridiculous at the end and the "cool" factor is ruined by moments where you literally go "wtf?"

As for the acting Okada does a good job, I'm surprised he pulled off the action scenes so well. Tsutsumi is always good but his character in this drama is pretty stock, theres no depth to him, and most of the other side characters, which makes the "twists" not so gripping. I guess that's the biggest issue with this drama in the end, it chooses style over substance, making the drama as a whole pretty forgettable.
Reviewed by sucigam on 17 February 2008
4. Gave up on this series. [Rating: 4/10]
I tried really hard to keep an open mind and like this show, but after watch 3 epi's, I just cannot justify wasting my time on this. The plots and execution of the script is just irrational. How am I suppose to believe that a room full of over 20 ARMED police allow one gunman to empty a revolver and NOT one police gets off a single shot? Why would anyone go up against an adversary wielding a knife in hand to hand combat when he (the police) has a gun? It's moronic. Another thing that nagged at me while watching this show is that the set for the SP office is EXACTLY the same as the office in the series Hancho Azumi.

I just don't understand why Japanese drama insists on have the same worn out character use for comic relief. If you watch Hancho and SP, you will what I mean. It gets really annoying.
Reviewed by racerX on 5 September 2013
5. Watchable [Rating: 7/10]
It was slick and stylish - and lacking a definitive, good plot. In the end, there were too many loose ends left untied and many characters left undeveloped. I did love the camera angles and the throbbing soundtrack, but if you're looking for a good storyline with interesting characters, it might be well worth it to skip this one.
Reviewed by Limes on 23 June 2008
6. So bad, it's good [Rating: 2/10]
Lameness galore. Rarely have seen this much braindeadness being succesfully packed into a 11-episode show, it's actually fun to watch.
Reviewed by Allen_L on 17 May 2008
7. Okajun so hot [Rating: 7/10]
My fave eps is terorist in hospital, oka-jun so hot!
Reviewed by ester_grace on 24 December 2010

Comments From Users (52)
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 yurifly [Rating: 8/10]
I would have given this drama a higher rating had the ending wasn't that ambiguous. I understand that it was to maintain curiosity in anticipation for the special, but there were too much loose ends that I thought could be tied up better. I love suspense, but I found the suspense here got a little cliched. The final scene with the prime minister, for example, what the hell were the rest of the cops doing standing around when there was obviously an assassin there? And why the heck didn't they call for more help like normally people would do? It ended up being like a cheap attempt to make Okada's character more heroic..totally failed. Aside from my nit-picky scrutiny, I enjoyed the drama well enough. Not only the fact that Okada looked dazingly hot, but there were some good chemistry between the casts, though at first I thought something might happened between him and the female SP. The background music was amazing btw. I have never really seen any suspense drama using so much classical music but it ended up working quite well. I guess I'm gonna wait for special before I can really judge the plot bc at this point i'm quite unsatisfied. (btw, okada is a little too short for his role imo, but i guess his eyes totally made up for it)
2. Comments by RedSamurai [Rating: 9/10]
This drama is very "special"... It's one of the few action jdramas out there (which is absolutely great since it completely succeeded in that extent). As everyone has been saying, there almost NO ROMANCE involved (another good thing that should be considered once in while), but also unfortunately not much character development: apart from Okada's and Tsutsumi's characters, the rest of the cast is pretty much just a filler! Interestingly, the package -as a whole- doesn't suffer much from it! Thanks to an amazing performance by Okada Junichi and Tsutsumi Shinichi (for which Okada deserved and did win the 56th TDAA's Best Actor), combined with an excellent directing (awarded as well) and finally featuring a remarkable soundtrack, it's definitely a great drama worth your time and attention (no wonder it was awarded 56th TDAA Best Drama and 1st TDA Best Non-Genre Drama).

N.B: Don't worry about the 'very' open end (which does make the first episodes indeed kind of a wasted opportunity of plot development), and don't rely on the special to give you any answers since it won't serve more than an event-sorting review. However, this is definitely great since it most probably means that an 'SP season 2' down the road...
3. Comments by Inujun [Rating: 8/10]
Watched this due to friend's recommendations, and I did enjoy it a lot although almost every arc started out a bit slow. The action scenes were done pretty well though, and some parts where they used brains instead of violence to outwit the criminals were pretty impressive. The problem was it became a bit draggy somewhere near the end and turned out very anti-climatic and quite idiotic; especially at the last episode. No idea why they had to turn some scenes into slow motion which resulted in me having to fast forward it, something I don't usually do----therefore decreasing the score to an '8'. The last few minutes were probably the highlights, giving a twist for future SP. Music was very good and Ogata fit very well into this role. All I can say is that this is a good drama but could be done much better.
4. Comments by ginger ale [Rating: 8/10]
I couldn't resist watching a Shinichi Tsutsumi and Okada Junichi tandem in an action film. The action though was not fast paced enough for me. But I was fascinated by the story and absolutely enthralled by the beauty of these two men in a non-bishie way!!! I love how the modern and the paranormal in Inoue's intuitive character fused with the sense of justice in Ogata's portrayal of the Chief. And I want more, a part 2, not just a special!!
5. Comments by aiscess [Rating: 9/10]
The very first serious police drama for me. Though it has some funny scenes as well, this is really as serious as it gets. I must say that I�fm impressed with the fight scenes, well choreographed compared to the other dramas I�fve watched so far. And for me the highlight of the series aside from the last story is of course Story II: The Hospital Siege. The director really did a great job here. Hope to see the movie!
6. Comments by aoi_dolphine [Rating: 8/10]
This is not a very fast paced drama. If you are expecting more of the US or HK type of action drama. I will tell you just to forget it. The producer here is trying to steer away from the western or asean kind of action dramas. Mainly focus on Inoue Kaoru & Ogata Soichiro's character. I gave it 8 bcos it's refleshing to see it from a japanese producer point of view on Security Police job.
7. Comments by xploring [Rating: 8/10]
Excellent production and good acting all round, I found it lacking in characterizaton and insights into the profession, the mind and life of SP. It's almost all setup, events unfold and resolution. It was enthralling and gripping at all the crisis situations, and the backstory of the main character was well-told. I particularly like the performance by the actor who played the last assassin.
8. Comments by Nermal [Rating: 10/10]
Can`t wait to watch. Okada Junichi and Tsutsumi Shinichi together again! ^^ Awesome!

It had been quite awhile since I saw a good Japanese action drama that didn't involve romance! This was blessed with a cast of incredible actors, a good storyline and a good concept and making. Completely worth the watch and looking really forward to seeing the movie finale! ^_^
9. Comments by moonchyld [Rating: 6/10]
ok, now i know why okada junichi is so "ninki" among women.. he's quite charismatic i must say.. the action scenes in the drama were pretty cool too for a japanese production.. but overall the story was weak and the episodes didn't connect at all.. not even in terms of character build-up. i'll def check out another okada drama from now on though :)
10. Comments by Oba-chan [Rating: 8/10]
Deep story, but too much mistery that hasn't been solved. The fighting scene was cool, It looks like okada really have a judo black bealt. the villain was freak and sometimes funny, that's unique. I'm waiting for SP second season.
Soundtrack: Way of life (V6): 10
11. Comments by dokaben [Rating: 6/10]
I only recall a scene where Okada dives into a full bathtub and stays under to escape a gas leak explosion. It was cool for the sake of being cool but didn't make much sense in context. Yeah, I think that pretty much sums up the series.
12. Comments by Signo [Rating: 8/10]
Refreshing new. The main part of the special is only a review.
The end is open, so a second season would be nice! Note: Don't miss the 2 movies! They will complete the hole story (it's like an alternative for a second season).
13. Comments by x_XJules [Rating: 8/10]
Actually a fairly good show. It took me a little while to get into it, and it is a little silly.. still I watched it to the end and if they make a 2nd season (which looks likely) I will probably watch that too.
14. Comments by dreamer10231 [Rating: 8/10]
given that it is a suspense, the creative writing made the drama more believable but then the last part was a bit...there's not much about the sp, it's more of a summary...i wonder how the movie would be...
15. Comments by Akiiness [Rating: 7/10]
Another Okada & Tsutsumi collaboration, can't be missed! It's rather rare to see a j-drama with action, so I really liked this one. Plus, it's short & to-the-point. Recommended.
16. Comments by chokakoi [Rating: 10/10]
Police, detective dramas are always my soft spot... actually I wanted to give it 9.5, 0.5 for the missing ending. but since they are making a movie for that... alright then.
17. Comments by Ezalor [Rating: 7/10]
Solid dorama with good suspense, but too constructed setting. Characters are a bit too shallow and there is not much of a controversial plot, though it was meant to be so.
18. Comments by shiroi_tora [Rating: 8/10]
I thought that this drama gives enough suspence and action to keep the view interested. The relationship of Ogata and Inoue is key in this drama which is shown throughout
19. Comments by sword_of_heaven [Rating: 8/10]
The story is fast paced and the music is good, and its overall interesting. Bad point - NO character development. Whatsoever. And the SP seemed almost meaningless.
20. Comments by v1olet [Rating: 7/10]
Okada, the bodyguard with his 6th sense. Quite boring, only the last 3 episodes that were good. It's not finished yet, awaiting SP Special (finale episode).
21. Comments by w-kassy [Rating: 8/10]
Nice action drama, Junichi did a great job coz there's a lot fighting scene.
But, quite boring in some part. To much dialogue and details I think.
22. Comments by marspeach [Rating: 7/10]
Fighting scenes were good and Okada Junichi was hot, but the story of the problems in the system was kinda boring. Just watch the action scenes.
23. Comments by shinjitsu [Rating: 6/10]
Didn't meet the expectations of the 'hype' surrounding it. No real surprises to the ending. Essentially just waited for the drama to unfold.
24. Comments by Kuro570 [Rating: 10/10]
Must watch, I'm going to describe this with key words.... Terrorist, Special, police, guns, arrests, murder, epic! need any more than that?
25. Comments by Jeanxi [Rating: 3/10]
Only watched the first episode. Weird story plus not very interesting. A horrible waste of Tsutsumi Shinichi's good acting skills.
26. Comments by gaijinmark [Rating: 7/10]
Style, but very little to no substance. Having said that, I still enjoyed it, just wish there'd been a little more plot to it.
27. Comments by nickylynn [Rating: 10/10]
A good action drama. Okada Junichi action scenes were really well done. Tsutsumi Shinichi did his part so well.
28. Comments by room304 [Rating: 4/10]
this drama was okay to watch, but boring at times and the so called twist was too predictable
29. Comments by gaston [Rating: 7/10]
Ends on a cliff hanger. Score would be higher if special was part of drama package.
30. Comments by Jhvx [Rating: 8/10]
Quite good, good thriller and an astonishing end but the plot advances very slowly

Read all 52 comments from users

Users who voted for this drama (4)
1. Rainee
The plot is engaging and a real cliffhanger though it started slow. And yes odaka is a must watch!
2. compaqmac321
3. Tokibaka
4. Rinrin