|Forced out of his research group after conflicts with his colleagues, Ogawa Takanobu takes up an offer to teach at a girls' high school in Nara. When taking roll call on the first day one of his students, Hotta Ito, sneaks into class late, claiming a bogus excuse - that she got a ticket after trying to park her deer in front of the train station. He makes immediate enemies with Hotta when he tells his superiors about her tardiness and attitude. In the following days, he begins to notice something unusual about Hotta, but he can't seem to put his finger on it.|
Walking through Nara Park one day, he begins to befriend the local deer population, feeding them rice wafers. After being confronted by a talking deer who commandeers him to prevent the destruction of Japan, he fails in his first mission and the talking deer exacts punishment - looking into the mirror the next day, he discovers he has turned into a deer from the shoulders up. Ogawa slowly begins to piece the puzzle together: the talking deer, the mysterious student, and a recent series of earthquakes that could spell doom for Japan...
|Drama Reviews (6)|
The review section may contain spoilers! Please understand
that you may find out about this drama's endings and plots!
|1. ||Myth and Redemption [Rating: 8/10]|
The viewership rating in 2008 didn't do justice to this drama. Had it been shown after March last year, many would have given it a second chance. In fact some would have hoped this myth becomes a fact and faithfully worship the deer as the redemptive deliverer from earthquakes.
A talking and un-kawaii deer doesn't appeal to me. The first episode taught me. Enjoy it, don't ask why and don't ask how. At first glance, the puppet looks as eerie as the moose head mounted on the wall of some American homes. The witty dialogues + colourful characters saved the story perhaps. An old chauvinistic deer anoints a hapless dole-eyed melancholic laboratory researcher to be the 'deliverer'. I would rather call him the delivery man. He is saved from disaster by two women, a gallant kendo expert and a history teacher who sounds like a museum headphone. Am I being sensitive? The writer seems to dig on the fact women are underemployed in Japan when they could do the job better.
We have seen enough of Tokyo and Kyoto on TV, but Nara is really new to me as a foreigner. Those glimpses of the old capital and archaelogical sites around Nara did stir my curiosity.
Ayase proves she is a comedian. Every move she makes reminds me of Hotaru. The deer steals the show whenever he encounters Ayase. Again, don't ask why, otherwise we all be wondering why couldn't they use Facebook to recognise each other? It could have solved all their problems.
|Reviewed by Eyeyore on 8 March 2012|
|2. ||Strangely funny [Rating: 9/10]|
Earthquakes are rocking Japan, and it's up to a fledgling high school teacher and a talking deer to solve a "myth" that may destroy the country.
Sound strange? You bet, but once you begin to wade your way through the legend and symbolism, you end up with a smart, funny, and engrossing drama that has its share of near-classic moments. Hiroshi Tamaki (NODAME CANTABILE) puts in a performance somewhere between bafflement and deadpan comedy, while Haruka Ayase is more subtly amusing. Its post-modern flavor may interest David Lynch fans, but the cultural vocabulary is pure Japanese.
|Reviewed by jdoramadotcom on 1 January 2010|
|3. ||Slow, But Steady [Rating: 9/10]|
It is a slow-paced drama, but boasts a brilliantly written storyline. The show starts you out knowing little about the significance of certain events and ever-so gradually introduces mysterious characters and plot twists that lead you through a sort of "guess what's gonna happen next" kind of thing. Even though the story unfolds slowly, it does so with grace and consistency. Not once did I ever feel that something was just "thrown into the mix"; every detail, character, and event has a purpose in advancing the story.
|Reviewed by Blue Ink on 7 November 2008|
|4. ||What was up with that ending?? [Rating: 4/10]|
Seemed to have some potential in the beginning, but overall was kinda weird. Maybe I have to go back and watch this with subtitles to see what I might have missed, but the ending really annoyed me. Also, after I finished watching this, I started watching Nodame Cantabile for the first time, and I couldn't believe how different Tamaki Hiroshi is. He's REALLY HOT in Nodame, and I barely noticed him when I watched this drama.
|Reviewed by jong hyun on 13 April 2008|
|5. ||Strange but good [Rating: 7/10]|
It was a very strange story, but I liked the unlucky fate part, I' sure everyone has felt that way before....
|Reviewed by Esilabet on 4 June 2008|
|6. ||Sometimes boring but [Rating: 8/10]|
Sometimes boring but the mystery along the series made me couldn't stop watching.
|Reviewed by ester_grace on 11 February 2011|
|Comments From Users (44)|
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 nishishi [Rating: 6/10]|
Finally... a dorama that take place in a historical city and not in Tokyo (or any other big city)-some island in Okinawa-sone city in Hokkaido-or some small city that doesnt even have an JR. And they choose Nara! Damn.. for that i already give this dorama 3 points!
As for the story.. its quite silly. Something you could expect in a children's movie (not a bad thing though... some children's movie r pretty nice) But Shikaotoko didnt work out for me... The only thing that made me want to watch the whole dorama was to know who was the "nezumi"s and the "kitsune"s messengers.... (well... at least something made me want to watch this... i couldnt say the same for a lot of doramas). The casting did a pretty good job (specially the Shika!) Nways.. overall its not a horrible dorama... just dont expect something memorable... watch it like u would watch a kid's movie!
|2. ||Comments by Susan [Rating: 9/10]|
This was a very enjoyable and interesting series! Tamaki Hiroshi did a pretty good portraying the main character of Ogawa, although I feel like his performances all run into one another. By the end of the series I was disappointed that so much of the initial characterization was forgotten. Wasn't he very unlucky? It would have been more satisfying if someone had said,. "It seems like your luck has finally turned around!" or something. But maybe someone did and I missed it. My favorite character was Deer-san, who was the funniest and most interesting character of the series. I wonder how he lost his antlers, though? I guess I'll never know!
|3. ||Comments by EstherM [Rating: 8/10]|
Loved the talking deer, loved the idea and the surrealism, loved the location of Nara and the old-fashioned look and feel, loved the actors and the dialogues. I�fll rate this 7.5 to 8 as I got distracted around episode 6 and only regained interest in the last two episodes. The execution was too slow, or to put it in a different way, most of the time the characters were doing uninteresting things (visiting temples, drinking, participating in school competitions, teaching), these activities had a higher purpose though, the search of the triangle, but I felt it was boring to watch at times nonetheless.
|4. ||Comments by g_hunter1 [Rating: 9/10]|
At first I thought this drama was gonna be lame, but it was actually pretty good. It was kind of funny to see a guy trying to do something that others would see as crazy. I was anticipating each episode to see what was going to happen next. This might not be for everyone. Eventhough the drama might seem to set a serious tone, there are some funny scenes spread out though the whole series. The intro and outro would probably put some people off since I did not really like those either. The outro sounded like something that came from a National Geographic special.
|5. ||Comments by SayaOtonashi [Rating: 6/10]|
This dorama was wonderful in the sense that it explains some old Japanese legends, but I would rather prefer an anime than live action, mainly because of the deer-face thing (the reflections were SO unrealistic, and overall the visual effects were bad). It is also really slow and I kept wondering how long would it take to find out what the "me" was! And if the fox was the fox, if the rat was the rat... I like some slow doramas but in this case, it got a bit boring. Anyway and as I always say, you whould give it a try!
|6. ||Comments by aik0 [Rating: 5/10]|
A substitute high school teacher who happens to be able to communicate with the deers in the area. The deers are said to be guarding that earthquake-prone area for centuries. Well, the characters do not particularly stand out and the pace could have been much better without all the flashback. Story-wise, so so. Yep, it is slow. Watch at 2x speed and you wont miss much, consider that 1 episode of LOST is equivalent to 5 episodes of this dorama, but there are worse.
|7. ||Comments by aiscess [Rating: 8/10]|
This was a nice and interesting series. It may seem weird at first because of the hidden mysteries and historical references, but that's why you become interested. Especially with what the deer said at the beginning, about finding the eye, you then will wonder what kind of eye is it talking about. Anyways, I had fun watching these not the typical all out comedy but it still brings some laughs. And I liked Tamaki and Ayase's chemistry here.
|8. ||Comments by dekatrain [Rating: 6/10]|
Unique story and also hard to comprehend at times. Even for the more advanced Japanese learner, watching this without subtitles is difficult as the concept of the story is quite odd. Enjoyable at times but never really interesting and Tamaki is quite emotionless through out the whole drama. Hats off to Ayase for her performance which is slightly low-key but does provide for a few laughs.
|9. ||Comments by Cerebus [Rating: 8/10]|
Superb drama/comedy which has excellent central story and pacing. It manages to make a talking deer to be the most natural thing in the world. Great ensemble cast playing an odd selection of characters. Quirky, but it never resorts to the over the top style which ruins so many j-dramas.
|10. ||Comments by oldasianguy [Rating: 8/10]|
Very interesting show......the plot was different.....and the cast was excellent.....!
Three things come to mind... 1. The deer was annoying 2. Ogawa sensei still reminded me of a deer even after he got his face back 3. Ayase Haruka has the cutest eyes.......
|11. ||Comments by Oba-chan [Rating: 8/10]|
Slow But Sure..
Tamaki and ayase are great duet. They are really funny especially in the end of this series. Tabe mikako is weird but she have a cute face..kawaiiii.. Fukuhara and nagaoka sensei play well too.
Soundtrack: Terrible sound and song = (Zero Point) 0
|12. ||Comments by chibichan [Rating: 8/10]|
very inetresting story, kinda weird when you think that deer actually can talk, and cat fish can destroy Japan. Watching Tamaki Hiroshi in this dorama give another impression of him (cause he so different from his role in Nodame)
|13. ||Comments by Ezalor [Rating: 7/10]|
Has got one or two laughs and you learn something about Japan's myths. Pretty ok. You can't call Tamaki Hiroshi an actor. Like in Nodame, the only thing he can do is to stare like paralyzed with his dull, weird face expression.
|14. ||Comments by tagnickname55 [Rating: 8/10]|
This was strange and interesting. I was a bit annoyed by the whole story at first but eventually that went away. It was nice to see something out of the ordinary for a change
|15. ||Comments by Jeanxi [Rating: 3/10]|
Really weird. Tamaki Hiroshi's character kind of scares me, especially his voice ^^||| And he's getting skinny to the point that it's scary as well.
|16. ||Comments by gaijinmark [Rating: 7/10]|
More like 7.5.This is a fantasy adventure type that Disney would make for the 9-12 year olds. Nothing wrong with that, in fact, I liked it!!
|17. ||Comments by aoi_dolphine [Rating: 8/10]|
The storyline is a bit to comprehend in the first 2 episodes but as the drama picked-up gradually, it's interesting and funny too.
|18. ||Comments by loveaomori [Rating: 10/10]|
wonerful!! a man becoming a shika. I don't know what kind of drug took the director of this drama but I'd like try it!!
|19. ||Comments by tartan [Rating: 9/10]|
I watched this drama because of Tamaki Hiroshi only, but it turned out to be a really great drama. I enjoyed it alot.
|20. ||Comments by Ikuko [Rating: 7/10]|
The first episode was strange, I didn't like but I saw all the drama and I liked very much the story. It was nice!
|21. ||Comments by Sun_Shang_Xiang [Rating: 8/10]|
Weird but entertaining, the last episode is mainly filler but make sure you watch up to the end of the credits.
|22. ||Comments by adrxuan [Rating: 6/10]|
Just a pretty average show to me...it's v.slow paced. Watchin this because of tamaki hiroshi...
|23. ||Comments by gaston [Rating: 7/10]|
Was interesting -- good fantasy/mystery with good performances and no loop holes (thank god).
|24. ||Comments by marspeach [Rating: 8/10]|
Different and weird story. Funny and very educational about Japanese history, hehehe.
|25. ||Comments by akitsu [Rating: 5/10]|
I still didnt figure out what was the series about :D But it wasnt all that bad.
|26. ||Comments by TakumaSan [Rating: 9/10]|
sooo goodddd.. loved it
the deer was soooo cute!
wow it as funny
|27. ||Comments by norani [Rating: ?/10]|
The Fantastic Deer Man -- Tamaki Hiroshi -- Teacher in Nara Deer Park
|28. ||Comments by sable_starr [Rating: 8/10]|
so bizarre and funny. tamaki hiroshi was great and so were the talking deer.
|29. ||Comments by strawberryfzz [Rating: 8/10]|
Loved it and all its craziness <3 Most unique idea for a drama ever. lol
|30. ||Comments by carina4 [Rating: 7/10]|
haha, I laught and cried and said KAWAII, Ayase<3Tamaki cute!
Read all 44 comments from users
|Users who voted for this drama (4)|
Brilliant drama, enjoyed it from start to finish. Some might give this a miss due to the fantastical plot, but it's a gem of a drama and shouldn't be missed. I really enjoyed how everything was weaved together, and the integration of folklore and history into the modern-day setting is very well done.
Tamaki Hiroshi was awesome as the downtrodden Ogawa sensei, definitely no shades of Chiaki senpai here! He had very good chemistry with the rest of the cast, including Ayase Haruka and Tabe Mikako. Shoutout to Sasaki Kuranosuke, who as the wise Shige-san was one of my favourite characters. The ending theme song is fantastic and worth putting on repeat.
And of course, Shika-san! You're truly one heck of a deer!
an interesting historical drama...
somehow i think it is different than other historical that i've watch