Random Curiosity

Densha Otoko – 03 »

Densha Otoko – 01, 02

OP Sequence

Episode 01

Short Summary:
Aoyama Saori and Yamada Tsuyoshi are from completely different worlds. She is from an affluent high society family while he is a middle class otaku. One day, Tsuyoshi defends Saori, a beautiful stranger to him, from a drunkard on the train. She gets his contact information afterwords and sends him some gifts, including one on his birthday (which was otherwise a horrible day). Tsuyoshi ends up mustering the courage, through the urgings of his message board friends, to call her.

Episode 02

Short Summary:
Tsuyoshi and Saori play phone tag for a while, until they’re able to actually get in contact. They eventually agree to meet once more. Tsuyoshi, with the help of his message board friends again, gets a makeover in Shibuya. In his new self, he waits for several hours before she shows up behind him.

ED Sequence

OP: Twilight by Electric Light Orchestra
ED: 世界はそれを愛と呼ぶんだぜ by サンボマスター
The OP sequence is a parody of the GAINAX opening for DAIKON4 way back when in 1983. It even uses the same song, Twilight by Electric Light Orchestra. I rather like it, having never heard the song (it’s from before I was even born lol). The ED is by a little known (at least by me) band, but it’s also a good song.

According to what I’ve read, the story goes that early last year there was a guy who asked for advice on the infamous 2ch message boards concerning a women he had met on a train. And so, Japanese culture has spun us a modern Pygmalion story of an otaku who changes himself based on the suggestions he gets on the message board. It started with a best selling novel, which has turned into a manga, a movie, and this drama.
I first heard about this a while back, but never looked into it until last week, when I heard the tv-drama had started. I found that the drama is very good. We’re mainly focused on Tsuyoshi’s point of view, as he’s the train man, but we do get some bits of Saori’s story. The opening sequence (and in fact the first half of episode 01) scares the crap out of me because it shows we get to see otaku-dom at its best (or worst). There’s quite a few funny scenes, from otaku-dom to Tsuyoshi’s clumsy and hapless behavior.
I’m not sure how much I like Tsuyoshi’s character. That’s not to say that Itoh Atsushi (who plays Tsuyoshi) is doing a bad job. It just seems that he’s a bit too naive about social behavior for his conversations with Saori (mainly on the phone so far) to be believable. I feel like warning flags should be going off in Saori’s head because of his stuttering and frequent long pauses. But maybe that’s just me. We’re supposed to feel for Tsuyoshi and (in a way) relate to his character.
I think one of the best parts of this series is watching the back and forth between the denizens of the message board and Tsuyoshi. Especially some of the wierder characters and their suggestions. A good bit of that adds to laugh value, and the rest adds to a more dramatic/serious overtone. Plus, the little CG animations of messages traveling through cyberspace are great.
All in all, this is a series that I will be following. I’m not sure how they’re going to stretch the story for 13 episodes, but I’m sure they’ll do a good job.

Edit: Being the idiot that I am, I never noticed that I was reading his name wrong. It’s Tsuyoshi, not Takeshi.

July 15, 2005 at 3:26 am
  • July 15, 2005 at 6:27 amAhochuchu

    i heard from my sister that this is an actual story which the guy made his internet journal into a book… and now its a drama and a play. i really want to watch it and i heard from a lot of people that its a good show… i think i’ll ask my grandpa in japan to tape if for me : D

  • July 15, 2005 at 11:12 amOmni

    Yup, it’s based on a true story :)

  • July 15, 2005 at 4:38 pmKT Kore

    If you guys haven’t seen it, check out the Daicon IV video (http://kumasan.free.fr/Daicon4.zip) that this show’s opening is an homage to. Daicon IV is an awesome animation that Hideaki Anno, Hiroyuki Yamaga, and Takami Akai (who later went on to form GAINAX) made, while they were in college, for a science fiction convention in 1983 called Daicon. They also made one for Daicon III (http://kumasan.free.fr/Daicon3.zip). The animation in this one is a bit more crude since this is the one that JUST the three of them made by themselves. They had a little bit more amatuer help with IV. Check ‘em out.

    I’ll be finally watchiung Densha Otoko tonight. Sounds like fun.

  • July 15, 2005 at 8:40 pmP

    Please don’t confuse 2ch with 2chan. http://www.2chan.net is an infamous image board, http://www.2ch.net is a popular Japanese discussion board (well known for their ASCII art characters which made an appearance in Nurse With Komugi) – many people in the west confuse the two. Densha Otoko originated on 2ch NOT 2chan.

  • July 15, 2005 at 9:12 pmKT Kore

    “The OP sequence is a parody of the GAINAX opening for DAICON4 way back when in 1983. It even uses the same song, Twilight by Electric Light Orchestra. I rather like it, having never heard the song (it’s from before I was even born lol). The ED is by a little known (at least by me) band, but it’s also a good song.”

    ^Fixed. =P

  • July 15, 2005 at 10:07 pmOmni

    Whoops, you’re right P. My apologies, I actually didn’t know the difference. Fixed…
    KT, did I write something wrong or are you fixing your own comment?

  • July 15, 2005 at 11:05 pmKT Kore

    @ Omni – I was fixing your comment about the OP. You said “The OP sequence is a parody of the GONZO opening for DAIKON4 way back when in 1983,” but it should be “The OP sequence is a parody of the GAINAX opening for DAICON4 way back when in 1983.”

    Also, though getting technical, it was animated before GAINAX came to be. It was made by the three guys who eventually went on to found GAINAX. I don’t expect you to add that, just informing. =P

  • July 15, 2005 at 11:07 pmOmni

    See, the funny thing is, I referenced http://www.gainax.co.jp/soft/daicon/opa.html several times, but because the OP actually has the word GONZO there, I never caught on >.>
    (I need a proofreader lol)

  • July 16, 2005 at 5:56 ambluemist

    I find it so amusing that they have been sort-of advertising everything Memories Off by showing Memories Off posters, games, and even pillows hugged by one 2ch guy!

  • July 17, 2005 at 8:43 amSatoshi

    Yeah, I noticed that. Product placement at its best! Along with KDDI (phone network).

  • October 17, 2009 at 10:40 ambrianleung8912

    hmmm im 4 years late, but i only just start watching this XD amazing how much someone can change just wif hair cut contact lens and clothes >w<

  • October 20, 2009 at 8:53 pmDai Sei Kou

    While I’ve never seen this drama, the name did catch my eye because of the ED song that was used for it.
    Now looking back, it’s quite funny how you described it.

    First of all, Sambomaster is quite well known now.

    And second, the song itself, Sekai wa Sore o Ai to Yobundaze, is probably more well known for being used in the DS game, Moero! Nekketsu Rhythm Damashii: Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan 2