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Re: J-Drama: 相棒12 (Partners 12)


Yes, that is becoming quite a running theme in Japanese society today. The children of traditional craftsmen are simply not interested in continuing the work of their parents. In fact, many of them almost seem to look down on the traditional crafts of their parents, desiring instead to either "bring them into the 21st century" or simply to find work elsewhere, in a company or out in the city. Sadly, many of the traditional craftsmen we have seen featured on NHK World and other such programs may be the last generation to continue their crafts. It's very sad to think about what will happen 20-30 years down the line.

I guess we can only hope that the children will eventually have a change of heart (similar to what we've seen on some of the J-dramas) and decide to continue in their parents' footsteps, after all. If these traditional crafts disappear, Japan will lose an indispensable and important part of its traditional culture. After all, many of these crafts have been in the same family since the Edo Period.

That is definitely true about Ukyo's speech and manners. The way he speaks is seldom heard in Japan anymore, which is why he sometimes gets strange reactions from the people around him. He speaks in a very polite and almost elegant style.
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Re: J-Drama: 相棒12 (Partners 12)


<EPISODE 7>

What an unfortunate turn of events in this sad episode. Though the murderer turned out to be the man who was falsely accused of committing a hit and run, none of this would have happened if it weren't for the corrupt police officer, who basically falsified the case in order to 'finish it up' and move on to a bigger case. In the process, he ruined several lives and families. What bothered me was that he got off scot-free. Everyone else either lost their life, lost their families and jobs, and essentially had their life ruined. None of this would have happened if it weren't for the corrupt police officer, yet he's able to keep his job and (presumably) his family. It's ironic how things work out sometimes.

That's why it felt good to see Ukyo yell at the police officer, telling him that they are cut from two different cloths. The police officer thought Ukyo and Kaito would identify with his corrupt desire to conclude this 'piddly' hit and run case and move on to a political scandal, but Ukyo stopped him in his tracks. It was an insult to police officers and detectives to assume that everyone had the same corrupt mindset as this particular officer.

I had no idea that the homeless man in the park, as well as the bento salesman, were all in cahoots with the murderer. Wow! I did think it was too good to be true, but then again, so did Ukyo. He probably realized that this was too much of a coincidence, and that there had to be something else at play here.

I don't know if it was just me, but it seemed like Itami and Serizawa went out of their way to make things especially difficult for Ukyo and Kaito this time. They always tease them, but this time, it seemed like they were deliberately trying to mess things up for Special Missions. I was especially surprised to hear that Serizawa was the one who had gone to the Bureau Chief and asked for him to give Ukyo and Kaito the ridiculous assignment of checking the murderer's alibi. At the end of the day, it helped them solve the case, but it was a little odd to see how they were being particularly bitter towards U&Kai.

Another person I couldn't stand was the girlfriend of the murder victim. She was basically playing two guys—getting money from one and lending it to the other. Ugh. Too bad she can't be prosecuted for anything. Maybe leaving the scene of the crime? Well, she did call the ambulance, so it's not like she deserted the body or anything.

Loved the ending, where we saw Ukyo get a little jealous when Ms. Hana-no-sato served Kaito. LOL! I think the writers are setting us up for something between Ukyo and Ms. Hana-no-sato. Wouldn't it be interesting if Mrs. Ex-Ukyo came back all of a sudden? LOL!

Episode 8 airs next week.
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Re: J-Drama: 相棒12 (Partners 12)


<EPISODE 8>

For some reason, I thought this episode was going to be the big special episode in the middle of the season. I was a little surprised when we saw that Ukyo and Kaito were already solving the case so quickly. I don't know why I assumed this was the mid-season special—maybe it was because Kaito-Dad seemed to be playing such a major role in the episode? I'm not sure, but I have a sneaking suspicion that a major storyline for this season will be Kaito's reconciliation with his father. When the woman told Kaito that his father was the only man out of all the men who frequented the salon whom she could trust and believe in, he seemed somewhat moved. Perhaps there is a chance for these two to reconcile, after all.

I used to dislike Kaito-Dad for various reasons, but I think he is a misunderstood soul who has trouble opening up to other people. He does his deeds behind the scenes, such as how he was letting the woman borrow his name and make it seem like he was supporting the wife and child of the caretaker. However, no matter what happened, Kaito-Dad refused to reveal her secret or take the credit. I think that shows some character on his part. Though he's certainly done his share of sneaky deeds and has been shockingly cold to Kaito, I think his bark is worse than his bite. He doesn't know how to vocalize his true feelings and is thus misunderstood by everyone around him—including his son.

Ukyo plays an interesting role in all this, mainly because he seems to be the only one who can see through Kaito-Dad. To Ukyo, Kaito-Dad isn't the menacing, conniving, and corrupt police commissioner. Ukyo sees a more human side to Kaito-Dad, and this might be why Kaito-Dad is trying to open up to Ukyo. I hope Ukyo will take a central role in helping Kaito reconcile with his father. Kaito, too, can be misunderstood by people around him. In this respect, I think he and his father are rather similar.

One thing that has been bothering me for a while is the fact that we haven't learned too much about Kaito's mother. Who is she? I can't remember much about it, but I seem to recall there being some speculation in the episode where Kaito was introduced (the case with the diplomat in Hong Kong) that Kaito's mother was actually the wife of the diplomat—who was believed to be romantically involved with Kaito-Dad. I'm not sure of the details, but somehow, I feel like some of the negative energy between Kaito-Dad and his son is related to this issue.

The actress who played the murderer in this episode did a fantastic job. Wow. She played the role with such class—all while adding a sense of mystery to the mix. It was as if this actress has portrayed characters like this one throughout her entire career! She did a superb job - I don't think the episode would have been the same without her!

What will her fate be? The crime was committed 20 years ago, but the statute of limitations for murder is only 15 years. They mentioned that she will have to undergo questioning, but will she be charged with anything? I know some aspects of the statute of limitations law have changed, but I'm not sure what the case will be here.

My favorite scene was Ukyo, Kaito, and Mr. Forensics Guy looking through the magnifying lens. LOL! Another classic was Serizawa badmouthing Itami on the phone with Kaito... until Itami walked in. Classic!

Episode 9 airs next week.
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Re: J-Drama: 相棒12 (Partners 12)


[Note: I wrote my comments before reading your summary above, Hiroshi, so there are some unintentional overlaps in what I've discussed.]
__________

There were some funny moments in this episode. I laughed at the scene of Yonezawa (Forensics man), Ukyo and Kaito all peering into that large magnification instrument, Yonezawa wearing those oversized red safety glasses. That was a unique and amusing shot of them all together. Yonezawa looked cartoon-like.

Then there were the very brief appearances of Itami in this episode. He cracks me up, such as when he quietly approaches from behind his partner, who was on the phone asking someone to keep info secret from Itami. Itami leans down and hears a part of the conversation. Serizawa is shocked (and nervous) realizing that Itami has overheard and would be mad on two fronts: 1) That his partner is keeping case information to himself; and 2) That his partner is so sneakily self-seeking that he is secretly attempting to keep Itami out of the loop. I guess a department promotion is more important to Serizawa than most anything else! And he used to seem like such a genuinely nice guy....

At the end, Itami and Serizawa are called to transport the "Last Lady in Japan" down to Police HQ to be interrogated. Itami's expression as he escorted her to the car said it all.

I wonder what would happen (if anything) to the Lady in reality, since the statute of limitations had expired in this case of murder? In 2010, Japan abolished the statute of limitation for murder cases, no longer closing the case after a proscribed number of years. Murder is now an open-ended crime in Japan, able to be prosecuted at any time. However, there are still statutes of limitation for crimes such as sexual assault and crimes that result in death. That statute was doubled, from 15 to 30 years. (See JURIST)

I recall that Ukyo mentioned she would have to go to the police and be interrogated (maybe "debriefed" would be more accurate?). An official record of the case now solved and closed... what about the press? Would this be public information, or kept confidential? I would think it would have to become public record, but maybe not in Japan. Hmm.... Well, even if she never serves time in prison, if the press gets a hold of it she will pay the rest of her life with societal ostracism, etc. Then again, she might be considered a hero of types, getting rid, as she said, of those "rotten men."

Did we ever see the outcome with the daughter? Would she be told about her bio-father and how she was conceived in depravity? Or would they let well enough be and shield her from all the complications? They didn't cover this aspect, did they? If they did, I missed it.

Kai Mineaki - Very interesting revelations in this episode. I wonder what actually happened in the past to make both Kaito and his father so deeply dislike and disrespect one another? They share the same personality traits (weaknesses) in several regards.

Kaito must have been stunned to hear what sort of man his father is from the lips of others—a man of character and silent generosity, one who went to great depths to take care of the Lady and the daughter. Kaito took it to heart and when he saw his father waiting in his car at a distance, Kaito gave his father a genuinely respectful bow. K-Dad seemed very uncomfortable with that and had to sort of ignore it, but now it's his turn to rethink who and what his son is.

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Re: J-Drama: 相棒12 (Partners 12)


That's a good point about the statute of limitations, Nchristi. I was actually thinking about that, too. Since the murder committed by the Lady occurred twenty years ago, she would not be prosecuted under the old statute of limitations. However, since this was abolished for murder in 2010, does this mean that she could be prosecuted and charged with murder? I'm not too sure. I haven't read up much on it, but my guess is that the new law wouldn't apply to old crimes. So, any murderer who committed a crime after the law was changed would be able to be prosecuted anytime, but crimes taking place before that date would still be subject to the old 15 years term. I could be wrong, though.

Perhaps the Lady had to give an official testimony at the station, so that the case would officially be "closed." Since she was such a public figure, though, perhaps the media/tabloids would be quick to get ahold of the story and report the truth about Japan's Last Lady. By revealing this, though, they'd also have to report the truth on the rotten author and all the nastiness that had taken place with him and his friends, so perhaps the Lady would be seen in a favorable light, as well.

We didn't really find out much about the daughter. I wonder if her story will be covered in more detail in a future episode, perhaps one of the multi-part episodes? I have a feeling there is some backstory with her, Kai-Dad, and Kaito that has yet to be revealed. From the ending, it felt like we have some unresolved/loose ends that have yet to be covered.

We've reached the midway point of the season, so I'm guessing we are right upon the major multi-part case of the season, that is usually aired in 2-3 parts. UTB no longer has a daily schedule after revamping their website, so I'm not able to figure out if we'll be seeing Part 1 of the mid-season special next week, but I wonder if it will have something to do with Kaito and his father reconciling? I feel like it has been a long time in the making, and that final scene seemed to be leading up to something big.

Itami - I think Serizawa is getting too big for his britches, too. When Itami was the junior partner, he never showed his partner (Miura) that kind of disrespect. I feel bad for the guy!

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Re: J-Drama: 相棒12 (Partners 12)


<EPISODE 9>

Another great episode! Just like last week, I thought this episode was going to be the big mid-season special, but it wasn't. I wonder what episode it will be this season? Usually, the special airs around Episode 8 or 9 each season, but since we haven't seen it yet, I wonder if it will be coming up in the next couple of weeks? Maybe Episode 10 will be the big multi-part special episode.

Lots of quirky Ukyo in this episode! I loved how he had gotten so enthralled in his book that he hadn't realized the fact that it had been three whole hours and Kaito wasn't at work yet! Then, we had scenes of him bribing the young geisha with sweets so she could give him more information about the case. I did notice that Ukyo is very careful never to overstep his boundaries—such as when the geisha offered him a bite of the snack she was eating. Ukyo very politely refused. He's not the type of person who would ever take advantage of a situation like this.

My favorite moment was when we saw Ukyo quietly seated in the back of the room during the big meeting about the case. He refused to get up from his seat, even after the Bureau Chief's assistant yelled at him. It's funny watching just how much Ukyo can get away with. LOL!

Speaking of the young geisha, did we ever find out how Ukyo knew her? It was a little random how he happened to know her name? Was she from a previous case in a former season? I don't think so, but then again, we've seen so many Partners cases over the years that I've forgotten!

I felt bad for Kaito in this episode. His childhood memories were pretty much ruined when he discovered what an evil, conniving person his childhood sweetheart had become. I wonder how different her life would have turned out if she didn't have to move after her parents' divorce. What an unfortunate turn of events, though. So many lives were ruined in the process—including the young president of the construction company. He seemed to awfully strange, too. He had no remorse for his affair and kept using the excuse, "I'm a man, after all." So? He deserves to serve two prison sentences for both murders. No matter how horrible they were, the guy got himself in that position. When you play with fire, you get burned.

I noticed some tension between Ukyo and Kaito at the end. Kaito didn't want Ukyo to prosecute the man for both murders, but he knew that once Ukyo has his mind on justice, nothing can stop him. I hope we're not going to see a rift between those two.

My all-time favorite moment was at the end, when Ukyo and Kaito saw each other strolling with their respective "dates." I think the writers are setting us up for a potential Ukyo-Mrs. Hana no Sato connection!

Episode 10 airs next week.
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Re: J-Drama: 相棒12 (Partners 12)


class blockquote Hiroshi66 wrote:

<EPISODE 9>

My all-time favorite moment was at the end, when Ukyo and Kaito saw each other strolling with their respective "dates." I think the writers are setting us up for a potential Ukyo-Mrs. Hana no Sato connection!
That was an interesting scene. She and and Ukyo have a special bond because she is one of Ukyo's successes in seeing a former criminal turn their life around. Ukyo seems to feel very comfortable around her because she doesn't know much about Ukyo's private life. Unlike Tamaki who knew everything and would always gain the upper hand on him.
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Yes, it always amazes me how little we know of Ukyo's private life, even after 12 seasons. When Kaito was talking about his childhood memories, I wondered if Ukyo had any childhood memories of his own? We know so little of his personal and family life, his past, etc.
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Don't forget that next week is likely the 1st of 3 parts for episode 10, the mid-season special. Original episode 10 was over 2hrs in length!

---
Currently a Clinical Laboratory Scientist at Cedar-Sinai Medical Center's Transfusion Medicine (Blood Bank) department
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class blockquote creidesca wrote:

Don't forget that next week is likely the 1st of 3 parts for episode 10, the mid-season special. Original episode 10 was over 2hrs in length!
OK, thanks for letting us know, Creidesca. Ever since UTB updated their website and removed the daily program schedule, it's been impossible to gage how many parts the longer episodes will be divided up into, or if the episodes will run over the scheduled time slot. Now they only have the monthly program schedule on their website, but this doesn't account for specific changes.
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