TV

Song Seung-Heon, Go Ara’s first script reading for OCN’s new drama series “Black”

Get a first look at the first script reading for OCN drama series “Black” which took place on July 24, 2017 in Sangam-dong, Seoul, South Korea!

The main cast members Song Seung-Heon, Go Ara, Lee El and Kim Dong-Joon attended the script reading.

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Song Seung-Heon  read is script as Grim Reaper Black, Go Ara as Kang Ha-Ram, Lee El as Yoon Soo-Wan and Kim Dong-Joon as Man-Soo.

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The Grim Reaper Black is cold-hearted, but sometimes dimwitted. Kang Ha-Ram seems like a recluse and has a hard time communicating with other people, but she is actually tender and emotional. Yoon Soo-Wan works as a mysterious ER doctor.  Man-Soo is a chaebol.

“Black” is scheduled to air this October in South Korea.

(Asianwiki)

Takayuki Yamada, Takeru Satoh cast as leads in the live-action film “Hard Core”

Takayuki Yamada and Takeru Satoh star the live-action film “Hard Core” with YosiYosi Arakawa as a supporting role.

Takayuki Yamada and Takeru Satoh will play brothers in the film. Takayuki Yamada’s character works as a gold miner with his only friend played by YosiYosi Arakawa, while Takeru Satoh’s character works for a trading a company. They discover an old robot.

“Hard Core” is based on manga series “Hado Koa Heisei Jigoku Burazazu” by Takashi Imashiro and directed by Nobuhiro Yamashita.  “Hard Core” will begin its production in August to September, 2017 in the suburbs of Tokyo.

(Source: Asianwiki)

Kim Go-Eun Cast as Female Lead in Film “Byeonsan”

The Goblin’s bride has returned! Actress Kim Go-Eun will star in the movie “Byeonsan” co-starring Park Jung-Min. The film’s title “Byeonsan” refers to the hometown of the two main leads where their fates eventually meet again as young adults.

The film will be directed by Lee Joon-Ik.  Filming is set to begin sometime this autumn in South Korea.

(Source: Asianwiki)

S.M.A.R.T Chase (極致追擊)’s movie trailer released, Orlando Bloom paired up with Lynn Hung

The upcoming film, S.M.A.R.T Chase (極致追擊), starring Lynn Hung (熊黛林), Orlando Bloom and Hannah Quinlivan (昆凌), is set to be released on 30th of September.

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Recently, actress Lynn Hung shared the movie’s preview on her Weibo account. Hung will play as Bloom’s leading lady.

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Source: Asian E-News Portal

Dean Fujioka Releases Full MV of “Unchained Melody“

The multi-talented actor Dean Fujioka recently released the full music video of “Unchained Melody“.

The song is a mid-tempo track with a poetic lyrics that includes a rap that mainly questions conflict and suffering as part of the human condition.

Dean’s first EP “Permanent Vacation / Unchained Melody” was released July 5. The short version of the music video for “Permanent Vacation“ was released last month.

Source: Arama Japan

YouTube Sensation PikoTaro marries model girlfriend Hitomi Yasueda

The popular YouTube sensation Piko-Taro, known for his viral song “Pen-Pineapple-Apple-Pen” announced Friday that he has tied the knot with model girlfriend Hitomi Yasueda.

The 44-year-old comedian, whose real name is Kazuhito Kosaka, and the 29-year-old Yasueda filed for marriage on Thursday, he said on his blog. The two became acquainted through work and had been seeing each other since 2013.

I will work even harder at home and at work,” said Kosaka in a statement under the alias Kosaka Daimao, who is said to be Piko-Taro’s producer.

Piko-Taro gained international fame with his 45-second viral hit “PPAP” in 2016. The song was recognized by Guinness World Records as the shortest song to enter the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and in July, he performed at the U.N. to promote the organization’s Sustainable Development Goals toward eradicating poverty and inequality.

(via Arama Japan)

 

Choi Siwon and Kang Sora wooed to star in tvN’s new drama

Super Junior’s Choi Siwon and Kang Sora are wooed to star in upcoming drama “Byun Hyuk’s Love” (working title).

Choi Siwon’s agency SM Entertainment revealed on July 31, “He has received a casting offer from ‘Byun Hyuk’s Love.’ It is one of the projects being considered for his comeback after military discharge. It is not yet confirmed.”

Also, Plum Entertainment commented that it is one of the projects Kang Sora is currently considering but no solid confirmation yet.

“Byun Hyuk’s Love” is the upcoming drama produced by Song Hyun Wook, the person behind the hit romantic comedies “Marriage, Not Dating” and “Another Oh Hae Young.”

Source: Soompi

Gen Hoshino channels in his feminine side in his new MV trailer “Family Song”

The official MV trailer of Gen Hoshino’s  “Family Song” and DVD content for its upcoming release has been released.

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In “Family Song” music video, Hoshino dons a dress and wig to play the mother of a family, inside a pink-stylized flat. Additionally, female actress and singer Mitsuki Takahata plays the role of the husband, male comedian Takashi Fujii and Petrolz singer and guitarist Ryosuke Nagaoka act as their daughters, and Noriyasu “Kasuke” Kawamura is on the drums as grandma. Hajime Kobayashi takes on piano, retaining his identity as their son.

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The song will be used as the theme song to the upcoming NTV drama “Kahogo no Kahoko” which premiered on July 12, of which Hoshino said he began writing this new song after reading the drama’s script.

Source: Arama Japan

tvN releases statement regarding Chinese spin-off of ‘Reply 1988’

South Korean cable TV channel tvN issued an official statement regarding the sale of their hit drama, ‘Reply 1988’s copyrights.

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It was just recently that a Chinese news source reported that a new drama series with a similar plot will be premiering this December. The new drama (我们的青春时期  Our Youth) will be the Chinese version of “Reply 1988.” Similarly, the show will be set in the 1980s and will follow the story of a group of adolescents and their families as they grow up in a neighborhood together, which is what “Reply 1988” is all about.

Following this news, tvN stated, “We never sold the rights for ‘Reply 1988’ to the Chinese broadcasting station producing the show. We find the similarities to be unfortunate.” However, at the moment it seems that CJ E&M, which owns tvN, is unable to take formal legal action.

The drama will be airing a total of 40 episodes for 3 months, starting this December. The leads will be played by new actors, Zeng Qi and Kou Zheng Yu.

 

 
Source: Soompi, Sina News

The Messed Up Psyche of A Girl in Her Lost World: A Manga Review of Boku Wa Mari No Naka

Shuzo Oshimi is probably one of the contemporary manga creators who have tried to infuse relatively unique colorful tones and unusual setup in common situations, which can be seen in most of Oshimi’s creations. One of which is his narrative styles that usually highlight weak, clumsy, and fragile yet angsty boy and girl characterization. He also presents uncommon and disconcerting  situations that, more often than not, leave the readers feeling drifted.

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Shuzo Oshimi

Oshimi also likes to present themes such as coming-of-age and perversion, including his experiences from his younger days. Furthermore, his stance of presenting sexual awakening and perversion in most of his work is concrete, as he believes that perversion is a characteristic that every person possesses which is surrounded by stigma—which he wants people, including his readers, to ponder about.

Additionally, Oshimi wants to explore and exercise more his way of presenting his characters’ perspectives through his manga Boku Wa Mari No Naka (Inside Mari) where the female perspective is predominant and of course, to stress that for him girls are “half of the world”.

THE STORY

Boku Wa Mari No Naka was created in 2012,  the year where Oshimi was writing it simultaneously with late-stage Aku no Hana. The plot primarily contained psychosexual gender bender twists, leaning to realism more than symbolism. The first few volumes of the manga presented the story initially in a supernatural phenomenon of switching bodies, perhaps to establish curiosity and intrigue among the readers, but in the later stage of the story, the author managed to unite the idea from one point to another.

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Similar to his previous work Aku no Hana, Boku Wa Mari No Naka follows a story of a subservient and good-for-nothing hikikomori, Komori Isao, the main protagonist. Komori discovers himself magically transferred into the body of a school-girl he stalks to, Mari. She’s been going to the same convenience store to buy chocolates and pops every night at 9 PM, and Komori keeps seeing her. Mari’s angelic beauty mesmerizes him deeply and when he stalks her back, he finds himself in her consciousness the following day.

However, Mari-Isao also discovers that Mari did not transfer into Isao’s body, but went all gone. The original hikikomori, Isao Komori (who is completely unaware of the existence of his new counterpart) met Mari through sudden confrontations: in the convenience store and in Komori’s apartment.

Mari’s classmate, Yuki, is the first to notice and discover Mari’s ordeal. Yuki belongs in the lowest social tier, while Mari hails as the leader of the top group in their class. Yuki helped Mari-Isao find real Mari by allowing Mari-Isao navigate real Mari’s past relationships while maintaining her social ties.

THE REVIEW

Drawings

Oshimi is probably one of the most commendable manga artists of today. The sudden shift of his drawing style depending on the characters’ emotion/mood is surprisingly remarkable. Although there were lapses in uniting one point of the story to another, Oshimi’s way of delivering the story through his drawings managed to keep the manga in one piece. The amount of time and effort given in the creation of this manga surely emanated in each panel, hence making this manga a great creation despite the flaws in the storyline.

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Story

Oshimi was probably trying to explore his talent as a storyteller by creating a manga with a ‘female perspective’. This because most of his characters in this manga are females more than males, allowing him to spend more time presenting more realistic situations about how women truly interact and deal with their everyday life’s troubles. The parts where these situations were delivered were so real that, as a reader, I wondered how Oshimi managed to include these parts in the manga so flawlessly, at some point. Although his representations were graphic in some degree, however, the story itself made these scenes valid and essential–leaving these parts out of the manga would make the story dull and pointless.

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The transition of the ordeal (initially masked as a supernatural phenomenon  which then led to the revelation of the character’s psychological disorder) gradually progressed, however, there were some blurred points as well as parts that I deemed somewhat missing in the story.

This manga, if recreated as a live-action film, would perhaps and hopefully come out similar to 1999 film “Fight Club” (or probably surpass it even. Is Fight Club one of Oshimi’s film influences?) due to its mature scenes and content. 

SIDE NOTE

Comments from the readers basically littered forums with “some reasons” behind the story’s loose parts. Some say Oshimi ended the story that way as he didn’t know where to take it next. Also, somebody asked on his Twitter if he had any plans to continue and he said no.

Some readers also consider Boku Wa Mari No Naka as NTR (Or Netorare) — a fetish derived around the main characters primary love interest being stolen from them by someone else through sexual means. Often without them initially knowing until the very end.

MY TAKE

I give Boku Wa Mari No Naka a 7 out of 10. I only recommend this manga to those MATURE readers.

Additional sources:

Oshimi, The Flowers of Evil Vol. 3, p. 172
Oshimi, The Flowers of Evil Vol. 1, p. 172
Oshimi, Shuzo. Inside Mari Volume 1. Crunchyroll. p. 194.
‘So I found this manga that got cancelled and ended with NTR’. GameFAQs. 2012