Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Review: Hana Yori Dango

Alternative Title: 花より男子
Genre: Romance
Episodes: 9
Broadcast Year: 2005
Starring: Inoue Mao as Makino Tsukushi, Matsumoto Jun as Doumyouji Tsukasa

Hana Yori Dango (HYD for short) is about a teenage girl named Tsukushi. Tsukushi is a teenage girl from a poor family, but her parents decide to send her to a school called Eitoku Gakuen. Only students from wealthy families are able to attend this prestigious school. Tsukushi, being the only poor student in Eitoku, is always bullied by her schoolmates. Things become worse when she get in trouble with “F4”.

“F4” is the name given to the 4 richest guys in Eitoku who basically control Eitoku because of their status. "F4" bullies Tsukushi like they have done to other students but she tries her best to stand up to them. However, one of the “F4” members seems to have regret and starts liking her.

Intro: WISH - Arashi
Ending: Planetarium by Otsuka Ai

Hana Yori Dango is probably one of the most addictive j-dramas I’ve watched. The story is very simple yet very interesting. HYD is a typical love story between a poor female and a snobby rich male. You may have watched other dramas with a similar story but you've probably haven't watched one that matches the high quality of acting.

The main season why HYD is so addictive is because of the characters and the endings of every episode. Let me explain how "the endings of every episode" makes HYD addictive. Some people may or may not like this. At the end of every episode (even to some extent the last episode) of HYD is a fingernail-bitting ending or a "cliff-hanger". Every episode ends with a rise in action and then the episode suddenly ends and you'll be begging to see the next episode. Most j-dramas do this, but from my experience, HYD probably does it the most. Some hate this but I enjoy this "technique" since it keeps the action fresh.

The two main actors, Inoue Mao and Matsumoto Jun each do a great job of acting. Inoue Mao (who plays Tsukushi) is THE best female J-drama actress I've seen so far. However the three minor members of F4, do an every sub par job of acting.

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  • Interesting characters, character development
  • Great acting by the two main characters
  • Keeps action fresh throughout
  • Poor acting for some minor characters
Recommendation: Watch HYD if you like romance dramas.

Rating: 9.5/10


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