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02 December 2009 @ 06:47 am
Seven Reasons Why You Should be Watching JIN!  

Time travel, gorgeous historical settings and damn attractive people. What's not to like?

I know, I'm so in love with list picspams right? It's either this or I spam everything in an episode... so lists it is. :) This time I bring you several excellent reasons why you should be watching the Japanese drama JIN (or if you already are, several reasons I love it)! In this drama season, My Girl has been providing me with sap (in a good way) and an opportunity to ogle Aiba consistently while You're Beautiful is just the kind of drama crack I can't get enough of. Yet JIN may still be my favorite drama that I'm watching.

To use my specific frame of reference (please don't judge this show by my taste in other shows! ;) ), JIN is like a combination of Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman and Rurouni Kenshin. You get the excitement of old-fashioned medicine blended with the intrigue of a transitional time in Japanese history. The series follows Minakata Jin, a surgeon in modern-day Tokyo who is thrown back in time to the Bakumatsu period. He is left to wonder if he'll ever see his fianceé and own time again, creating a new life in the past in the meantime.

1. History with a twist.

When I first heard about this show, two things peaked my interest: Ayase Haruka and time travel. As it's important to the structure of the show, let's start with the latter! I think bringing your main character from the present to a past era is such a perfect way to do a historical drama. While this show keeps the integrity of the period, Minakata Jin brings a modern point of view and sensibility with him. It allows the show to explain and break open old traditions for the audience. In addition, the time travel aspect adds a thread of mystery to the show. There's definitely moments that really screw with your mind, in a pleasant way! I'm only a few episodes in, so I couldn't possible spoil that for you! There's still so much I don't know but I'm eager to find out. :D

2. Our hero, Minakata Jin.

Minakata-sensei, as he's usually called, is the heart of the series. As the audience, we're introduced to this new time through his eyes. Every time he tries a medical procedure with his limited resources, we're invested in his success or failure. I think he's a great lead character: he's sort of odd and flawed but unambiguously a good guy. I like that a lot of his strength comes from his skill as a doctor. In a short span of time, I've really fallen in love with this guy's face. Just look at that crazy toothy crocodile smile! Those forearms also aren't hard on the eyes. NECK.

3. Attempting surgery with stone knives and bearskins

Note: Totally not impugning the medicine of the Edo period, it's a Spock quote. XD

You can't really talk about our main character without mentioning the importance of his profession! We meet Minakata-sensei at a low point professionally, a failed surgery has caused him to doubt himself. But when he arrives in the past, he's forced to jump back in. Okay, I know medical dramas aren't everyone's cup of tea but it's really fascinating to watch Minakata-sensei try and translate his skills to 150 years in the past! Plus it means life or death drama is built into the series but in an expected way so it's not quite as emotionally taxing as surprise cancer. :)

4. Saki is the BEST. Seriously.

While I really love everything about this show, I may love Saki a little extra. Saki is our heroine, and not in the way that just indicates she's the love interest of the hero. She meets Minakata-sensei when he takes her brother's surgery on his shoulders. From the moment you see her inquisitive eyes, you know that Saki is going to learn, to change, to become more than what she thought she could be. Saki is a great mix of softness and pure steel. Bonus: she's played by Ayase Haruka and therefore gorgeous. And wears beautiful kimonos all the time. And is generally kickass. SAKI. ♥

5. You can't do Bakumatsu without a lovable ronin

Now this may just be my previous exposure to Rurouni Kenshin speaking, but you really can't explore a chaotic period of Japanese history without a lovable ronin with a mysterious past! I don't want to give too much away but the show definitely inspired me to go wiki the Bakumatsu period to figure out the historical events that have (and will) shape the characters introduced in this drama. Something that really needs no explanation: this guy's face. He totally has the best facial expressions. And awesomely growly and informal speech. To quote phrenk, "The way he talks reminds me of Nagase's voice in My Boss, and indeed a lot of his mannerisms also remind me of such. He is kind of like a shorter, older, dirtier Nagase. Which is to say: awesome." (Also awesome, her picspam on the subject! Just be very careful in your scrolling, there is a point where she warns for spoilers in episode three that you really cannot go past! Warning! ♥)

6. No weak links here!

Basically, no matter what size part, all the characters are really well drawn. This show not only builds a new world, it populates it really convincingly. From Saki's tough-as-nails mother to the respected head of medicine in Edo, everyone is compelling and carries their own history. There's even a kid who's in no way cloying and is in fact really likable! I'm interested to see where all these minor characters go.

7. Building a world isn't so hard with settings like this.

As you can see from this small sampling, this show is amazingly beautiful! I love the colors, the cinematography, the lighting! As it's set in another time period, they really had to build a new world from the ground up. JIN creates a rich setting, from the architecture to the small details on an outfit. Really, I could just watch this show for its visual beauty! When added to all the other things it does right, this drama really winds up being a knockout!

I hope I've given you a taste of the pretty and the interesting elements you'll find in JIN! I really recommend you download the first episode and give it a try. It has certainly stolen my heart! As I mentioned in my previous pimping efforts, if you're interested in downloading this or any other Asian drama, you should go join jdramas. Go here to download the show if you're already a member. We're about half way through the release of subs, so you have a nice head start!

I hope you enjoyed the picspam! Thanks for looking and any comments are more than welcome! JIN. :)
Current Mood: enthralledenthralled
rabidline: blown || speechless.rabidline on December 2nd, 2009 11:54 am (UTC)

Wow. Just- wow. *brain melts from extreme prettyness* Okay, I'm sold. THE KIMONOS AND RONINS AND FFFFF-

Great picspam!
Top: AtLA: Getting all... bendytopazera on December 2nd, 2009 12:27 pm (UTC)
Oh man! Do you watch Asian dramas already? I didn't think you were part of my flist that did! Either way, I'm so so excited to hear that you might check out the show! It is seriously gorgeous. And just really good. I could do another whole picspam of just the lovely shots of kimonos in this show, that is such an advantage to watching a period show.

HOORAY, I hope you try JIN! When I was making this I was hoping I could catch the attention just one person! JIN.
(no subject) - rabidline on December 2nd, 2009 12:58 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - topazera on December 2nd, 2009 04:39 pm (UTC) (Expand)
THEY CALL ME THE HIPHOPOPOTAMUS.: P-P-P-PLATINUM BASSET!!!!ohmyghost on December 2nd, 2009 12:04 pm (UTC)
I've heard such good things about this show! I've even downloaded the first episode, but I haven't really been pulled to it, if that makes any sense? (Probably code for: "I have been too lazy to watch it yet.") But these pictures are gorgeous *_* SO YOU MAY INDEED HAVE WON ME OVER
Top: 嵐: = 90% dorkiness / 10% peer pressuretopazera on December 2nd, 2009 12:37 pm (UTC)
Yesssss, I'm so pleased! No, I get what you mean, there's a lot of first episodes that I download and then leave sitting around while I wait for the mood to strike. In fact I knew JIN as "that show I've heard good things about" for a long while before I watched it and fell in love. ♥

DOOOO IT. /peer pressure :D
yoonbi: arashi❞the darkness swallows uswoelvs on December 2nd, 2009 01:05 pm (UTC)
this show seems so beautiful and I love Ayase, thanks so much for the awesome picspam/pimping!!
will have to check this out after finals :)
Top: 嵐: I've made a huge mistaketopazera on December 2nd, 2009 03:46 pm (UTC)
Eee, I hope you do! I'm so happy with this show that I just want to share the love. I love Ayase too, I would give shows a try just for her! Thankfully she also happens to be in a show that's awesome! And allows her to wear kimonos and stun me with her beauty and tenacity, oh Ayase Haruka. ♥

Thanks for commenting! :D
(...why don't I have an Ayase Haruka icon yet, that is terrible.)
bek: moko is gloriousbiases on December 2nd, 2009 01:14 pm (UTC)
I downloaded the first episode a couple of days ago but I'm going to finish Kami no Shizuku before watching anything else. I was planning on waiting until this one was completely subbed but your gorgeous picspam may have changed my mind. It looks fantastic!

Have you seen the British show Life on Mars? It's another awesome example of time travel (kinda) done right.
Top: DW: brush me feel metopazera on December 2nd, 2009 03:56 pm (UTC)
*nods* Yeah, waiting for subs can be a killer! This show, with all it's plot and such, already feels too short to me so I'm glad to stretch it out a little. :)

Have you seen the British show Life on Mars? It's another awesome example of time travel (kinda) done right.
Oh man, I downloaded the pilot of Life on Mars but it's been sitting on my hard drive for months! I should get to that now that I need to supplement my JIN/time travel kick. From what I've read about it, that's actually a way more apt comparison than either of the shows I mentioned. :) I think they're structured in a pretty similar way.
(no subject) - timescout on December 3rd, 2009 08:44 am (UTC) (Expand)
peaches in the creases of a plastic bag: rl: Yoon Eun Hyephrenk on December 2nd, 2009 02:42 pm (UTC)
You already know how much I love this, and Jin. (And Jin. And Saki. And you!)

In this drama season, My Girl has been providing me with sap (in a good way) and an opportunity to ogle Aiba consistently while You're Beautiful is just the kind of drama crack I can't get enough of. Yet JIN may still be my favorite drama that I'm watching. Agreed!

I love the juxtapositions in the pictures of the first reason. (Especially the creepy fetus vs. the kaleidoscope.)

In a short span of time, I've really fallen in love with this guy's face. ME TOOOOOOO.



I LOOOOOOOOOOOVE HIM. (And thanks for the pimp and the quote and the love! Awwww, LOVE.) We really do have a lot of the same caps, umai. <3

For reason 6, my overwhelming feeling was BUT YOU LEFT OUT _____! Then I realized that it's just that EVERY CHARACTER IS AWESOME. JIN, YOU ROCK.

So pretty, Jin. So pretty.

Gorgeous as usual, toplet. A++++++!! I am so happy that this might cause even ONE more person to watch Jin. It is just that amazing.
Top: FF: The Parasoltopazera on December 2nd, 2009 04:07 pm (UTC)
You already know how much I love this, and Jin. (And Jin. And Saki. And you!)
Tangent: What is the capitalization for this show? I've been using "JIN" because then I can conveniently think of Minakata-sensei as "Jin". But I'm confused!

(Especially the creepy fetus vs. the kaleidoscope.)
Thanks! I was debating what shots to use to get across the creepy without having to look at the creepiest shot even though you know it's coming every time I looked at the picspam. ;)

I almost gave Saki a double-length panel, like "other characters" or "scenery" but then I decided that would be totally unfair. I think I told you this but it was touch and go until the POSTED.

(And thanks for the pimp and the quote and the love! Awwww, LOVE.) We really do have a lot of the same caps, umai. <3
Right back at you! *squishes* I'm glad you take that as a compliment and not just that I'm totally ripping you off because talking without spoilers is haaaaard. XD

For reason 6, my overwhelming feeling was BUT YOU LEFT OUT _____!
I felt the same way! But it was already getting pretty extensive! And I was just looking at the promo pic on jdramas and thinking "Hey, do I even know that old guy yet..."

Aw, you're bringing on the blushing as usual. It is always ~the dream~ to get one person to watch who wouldn't have otherwise, I can only cross my fingers! JIN.
♥brokendartist on December 2nd, 2009 03:16 pm (UTC)
I've been thinking about watching this since there's timetravel, does he adapt very quickly to the past?
and it looks like a pretty show :)
Top: LOST: Blondes have more PWNSAUCEtopazera on December 2nd, 2009 03:34 pm (UTC)
I definitely recommend it!

does he adapt very quickly to the past?
Hmm, I would say he does. There's the ongoing conflict of whether he can return to his own time and trying to figure out if what he does changes the future, but being in a doctor, he's really forced to jump in and start using his skills and finding a place in the world pretty quickly. Plus, the show is only going to be eleven episodes long so things have to move fast! :D

It is really pretty! And hee, your icon is appropriate! Speaking of pretty shows and time travel... :)
talk ✈ play ★ loveoutof_focus on December 2nd, 2009 05:11 pm (UTC)
Thanks for this post. I'm behind with jdramas this season.

I'm fascinated with time travel and this drama combines more than one of my interests. I'm downloading Episode 1 already.
Top: Actor: [Eun Hye] The most charming girltopazera on December 2nd, 2009 10:01 pm (UTC)
You're welcome! I'm glad it helped you narrow down your jdramas for the season, I hope you like it when you give it a watch. :) The time travel aspect is definitely what first hooked me too.

Also I was stalking your icons (as you do) and YEH, You're Beautiful and Hanson? I love your taste! ♥

everyhome: jin is prettymiss_magrat on December 2nd, 2009 05:43 pm (UTC)

I'm a bit hyper, but I handed in my essays, so I can finally catch up on it, hurray! :D Which makes me a tiny bit excited.

And YES, best drama of the season, hands down. I think I even like it more than Iris, which is saying a lot.
Top: VM: Drown metopazera on December 2nd, 2009 10:13 pm (UTC)
Oh yes, I can see you're just a tiny bit excited. ;)

JIN JIN JIN. Oh man, this is the first time I've spoken to someone who already loves JIN that's not phrenk! I just want to grab your hands and jump up and down! It's so great!

I'll have to get to Iris at some point. I've heard such good things about it but it seemed a little... traumatic maybe, for my state of mind. I say, as I go back to my graphic shots of brain surgery. XD

I adore your icon by the way! I was looking at that very shot and thinking "Wow, you could just crop this cap and voila, icon!" Pretty! Saki and Jin! ♥♥
(no subject) - miss_magrat on December 2nd, 2009 11:51 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Hanna: Kurochudelya on December 2nd, 2009 06:18 pm (UTC)
I was really meaning to watch this, but I'm kinda low on free space on my hd. Now that you posted about it, I'm craving to see it
Top: 嵐: Fuck you Ninotopazera on December 2nd, 2009 10:03 pm (UTC)
Ugh, I know that situation well! I've had to delete something to download anything new for months. It's really tough when you're a packrat like me! :)

I hope you get free space and a chance to try this show soon! ♥
(no subject) - chudelya on December 3rd, 2009 05:29 am (UTC) (Expand)
♔ Lydzi ♔ Au service du Roi Rickon.: In love.lydzi on December 2nd, 2009 09:01 pm (UTC)
Ok you've done it. I'm going to ddl it :).
Top: FH: Brighter than Sunshinetopazera on December 2nd, 2009 10:04 pm (UTC)
Yesssss. I hope you like it when you give it a try! Thanks so much for commenting! :)
bumbleberribumbleberri on December 2nd, 2009 11:04 pm (UTC)
Whoa I usually don't like watching medical genre dramas...but this one DOES intrigue me. And omg I love YOUR SCREENCAPS. They look so amazing!! When I saw this on my flist, I immediately knew I had to check your '7 reasons to watch JIN' because of your stunning caps^^
I've seen this drama title everywhere, like on mysoju, youtube, viikii...but I've yet to pick it up :D Maybe I should? Though I'm currently simutaniously watching two taiwanese dramas right now after You're Beautiful (OMG. LOVED. THAT. SHOW), but I'll try to squeeze in this one since the other two come out only once a week :)
Top: Actor: [Eun Hye] The most charming girltopazera on December 17th, 2009 11:24 pm (UTC)
Oh man, thank you so much! Sorry this comment is so belated! It was so fun working with these JIN caps, it's such a pretty show that it only needs a little polishing to make it shine. :)

I hope you get a chance to at least check this one out! I heard about it because of the positive buzz and you can see how that turned out for me. *giggles* (I MISS YOU, YOU'RE BEAUTIFUL!)
(no subject) - (Anonymous) on December 19th, 2009 10:31 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - bumbleberri on December 19th, 2009 10:39 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - topazera on December 29th, 2009 09:52 pm (UTC) (Expand)
animefreak42animefreak42 on December 2nd, 2009 11:47 pm (UTC)

I was just kind of nodding along and staring the entire time. <3 As much as I enjoy ogling Aiba in My Girl, JIN is definitely the drama I'm most rabid about this season. I especially agree with your reaction to the hearing about JIN: Ayase Haruka + time traveling! Ayase Haruka is so awesome, I love her. I can't believe how much of a ditz she was on AnS given her incredible acting. Have you seen Tatta Hitotsu no Koi yet? That was the first drama I saw with her in it, and it got me into Kame and her at once.
animefreak42animefreak42 on December 2nd, 2009 11:53 pm (UTC)
Oh, also, I imagine this drama would be even more awesome for the Japanese since they know all the history and the significance of Sakamoto Ryoma's character. It kind of blows my mind, given how this drama one of my favorites ever and I'm not getting the historical cues at all (except when the subbed nicely points them out).
(no subject) - topazera on December 17th, 2009 11:31 pm (UTC) (Expand)
aka Sundownertimescout on December 3rd, 2009 08:53 am (UTC)
Nice picspam of a great drama. Thanks!

I was captivated by JIN from the get go. It's so pretty, the cinematography is awesome! It's also populated with interesting charcters from the major to minor and I'm really intrigued to see how it all ends. Just waiting to find some time to enjoy episode 7 now that the subs are finally out.

JIN!! ;)
Top: Pride: She never fades awaytopazera on December 17th, 2009 11:35 pm (UTC)
JIN!! :D

Thanks so much for the comment! I needed to capture just fraction of my love for this show. I've been watching it pretty slowly, every episode is so fulfilling, so whenever I watch a new one it's such a treat! I'm both super excited and a little nervous to see how it ends. :)
Serenaherm_weasley on December 5th, 2009 03:40 pm (UTC)
Hi! You've been nominated at the Spock/Uhura Awards over at spock_uhura! Come check out the nominees list and see if you have to choose between two of your works to compete! ;) CONGRATULATIONS!

(Sorry to be bothering you here, but I didn't know where to contact you)
anenko: CELEB: oguri shunanenko on December 9th, 2009 11:02 pm (UTC)
I was swayed by this picspam, and oh god, is Jin an *awesome* show or what? I want to race through the episodes, but at the same time, I'm so invested in these characters that I'm dreading the thought of any of them not making it through with a happy ending.

Episode 4! Saki and the big discovery!

*must find Jin icons*
Top: HK: OMG LOVE!!topazera on December 18th, 2009 12:07 am (UTC)
Yes! I saw you had joined in the fun and was very excited, I've just sucked at commenting this week! Sorry!

But yay, JIN! Isn't it just so good? Everything about it is so solid: the writing, the cinematography, the acting (I fully intend to stalk Osawa Takao from this point on). Predictably (for me), I'm watching the episodes slowly since I don't want to let these characters go. Every episode I'm trying to will them towards the best possible ending and hoping no one I like succumbs to illness or a need for brain surgery. I trust you JIN, I'm just a worrier!

I'm happy to have had a small part in your decision to start this one, though once you start, JIN does all the work of getting you hopelessly addicted itself! :D
(no subject) - anenko on December 21st, 2009 02:58 pm (UTC) (Expand)