I’m watching an asadora! Does this mean I’m officially old? Or a housewife?
Asadoras (Morning dramas) run six days a week on NHK, and last for hundreds of episodes, each lasting fifteen minutes. It’s tempting to dismiss them as light daytime TV, but this one seems a little different. Mind you, I’ve only ever watched one other asadora, Ohisama. I saw a few episodes, but found it rather slow moving and it was obviously made for people who were nostalgic for the post-war period.
The reason I started watching Amachan was because it’s written by Kudo Kankuro: the writer of Tiger and Dragon, Unubore Deka and Ikebukuro West Gate Park. I knew good actors sign up for asadora’s quite happily but I was surprised that someone who’d written such good dramas would work on daytime TV.
Once I began watching, I quickly had to change my mind. This was nothing like the cosy, plodding moralistic Ohisama. It moves at a fast pace, making the fifteen minutes seem even shorter, and this means that when one ends, you immediately want to watch the next.
The story is about a woman who returns to her home town that she left over twenty years ago. She brings her daughter with her, and is appalled that the daughter loves the town she hates so much. That’s basically it. The cast is great: full of familiar faces, with Kyoko Koizumi as the returning woman, and Rena Nounen as her daughter. Rena puts in a great performance, especially considering this is her debut drama. Meanwhile, the dialogue is as sharp as you’d expect from Kudo Kankuro.
This has been quite a surprise for me, and I’m very glad I tried it out. Huge thanks to earthcolors for doing the subs.