This ep was actually quite nice and picked up pace between Naoki and Kotoko as well as allowing him to get to know his wife more. This ep was all about Naoki meeting Kotoko’s extended family with a trip down to her home town. The drama is just following how the manga was set out but there’s something lacking for this drama. Something’s just not quite right. The drama is not very long; it’s just 16 eps with the eps last around 35 minutes each but the drama feels draggier and draggier with each ep and there’s not even that much happening each ep! I’m just getting less engaged with the drama with the main problem lingering around Kotoko and Naoki’s relationship, which is the heart and soul of the drama. They are the whole reason the drama exists but it’s just getting harder and harder to watch them when it is one step forward, two steps back for them.
This ep was much better in terms of the bridging the closeness between Naoki and Kotoko but their relationship still feels very cold despite the multiple attempts to bring warmth to them. Their relationship is becoming quite bland to watch with Kotoko putting in the hard effort and constantly chasing after Naoki while he just sits and watches her do all sorts of embarrassing things just to keep him by her side. Kotoko really tries and puts in her everything with her relationship to Naoki while he is just doesn’t seem to care. He is just willy-nilly and really, one wouldn’t even know that they are a married couple if not for the fact that Kotoko literally has to scream it out to everyone they meet. Kotoko treats their relationship as everything to her while Naoki just sees it as nothing more than a tie between two people. Naoki is naturally a cold and cool person. That’s his personality and something that is not going to change regardless of his marriage to Kotoko. However, I do expect to see a different level of closeness and love between them now that they are married, and have been for two-and-a-half years. Specifically, I want to see Naoki act as a husband and as someone who truly loves Kotoko for who she is. Up until now, it’s just all talk when it comes to his feelings for her and even when he does initiate some warmth, it feels quite forced and unnatural.
Urrrrgggghhhhh, what gets me more annoyed that Naoki being Naoki is the drama painting his as a god. I get it, we all get it! He is popular, smart and attracts attention wherever he goes and that is fine by me but the drama has painted him as the perfect guy who is so perfect that no one can ever reach him and that is what I am really most annoyed about. Whether it be grannies, young kids or highschoolers, they are all in love with Naoki seeing him as the best thing to exist. I personally feel as though the drama has gone overboard with the character of Naoki, completely stripping him of warmth and that is really distancing his relationship with Kotoko despite their close physical proximity. Despite them being a couple, I don’t feel that between them. The chemistry between them has dropped significantly this season compared to the last and this has very much to do with how the story is written. The story is just inflicting the OTP with conflict after conflict but not allowing them to work through them together which is distancing their relationship.
Naoki’s treatment towards Kotoko is on a constant upward shift and downward fall. One moment he is warm and sweet towards her and the next he is cold and completely ignoring her presence in his life. This ep he warmed up to her and for once she was the sole focus in his eyes. I really liked how he paid extra attention to her, something that I would have liked to see him do more often. I think with the tone of my writing, Naoki sounds like a really bad person but to clarify, he isn’t. The writing this season has just made him quite monotone with personality. I like him but at times he is too cool and cold especially towards his very own wife. Their relationship feels less close now that they are married than when they were still in the courtship stage.
Itazura na Kiss ~ Love in TOKYO and Itazura na Kiss ~ Love in TOKYO 2 are very well-received and loved by the English speaking community having won awards at both the 2013 and 2014 DramaFever Awards. At the recent DramaFever Awards (2014) held just a few days ago, INK2 took home the Best Japanese Drama award and Honoka Miki and Yuki Furukawa took home the Best Couple Award, which just goes to show how popular this drama is doing overseas.This drama is already doing lots of fanservice by having the OTP together but I want to see substance as well as just fanservice from the drama.
Click here to watch Itazura na Kiss 2 ~ Love in TOKYO.