Since When Are Sweatpants a Sin? Himono-Onnas and Hotaru no Hikari

Okay. I seriously need to rant about this drama. Hotaru no Hikari. It is one of my very favorite J-dramas (is it me, or am I finding many good J-dramas lately?) and there is so much I feel I need to rave about, whether it be how great the plot is, or how frustrating it is.

The setting, the characters, the actors, the comedy. It is really just a perfect, delicious little combination of great acting and adorable romance. I have never identified with a character more than I do Amemiya Hotaru (played by the talented and lovely Ayase Haruka) and I feel like I am watching myself. Seriously.

But there is something I really feel frustrated with. My anger and confusion has been mounting throughout the series, and it seems to have reached it’s breaking point.

Please, someone tell me: Since when are sweatpants a sin?

This drama projects Hotaru, who likes dressing in sweats and jerseys and being a lazy beer-drinking slob while at home, to be this somehow tragic Himono-onna character with this deep black scorching secret of being that laid back at home. Okay, please, someone, englighten me with your opinion.

I know that in America, people wear sweats in the grocery store for god sakes. And I don’t know anyone who doesn’t “relax” while at home and change into what I personally call “my home clothes” when they are just chillin at their place. Okay, so maybe some aspects of our personal lives can be embarassing, and I wouldn’t want to wear what I wear at home out in real life, but this drama is REALLY emphasizing the evils of what I assumed to be a totally normal way of life.

Hotaru is honestly shunned by society because she wears sweats at home. Literally. Her boyfriend, who “loves” her ran off on her when he found out what she was “really” like at home. I mean, WHAT THE HELL. So much for “I love you”. What is this? So because she wears sweats and not, I don’t know, a formal suit or dress, while hanging out at home, this makes her somehow a repulsive creature that he can suddenly not even love anymore? AH!

Is this somehow normal in Japan? What are women suppose to act like at home? I mean, really. Like, am I suppose to put on makeup, doll up my hair and pick out a nice outfit in order to be a couch potato for the day? And, one more thing, what’s wrong with Hotaru’s “home hair” I love it, and think it looks super cute.  Just saying…

Bucho is the person who I really love, aside from Hotaru. I love how, for once, in this drama a man and woman can honestly live together as best friends, without any awkward feelings for each other getting in the way. Bucho (I honestly can’t even think of his real name) is so delightful. I love every scene with him and Hotaru sitting on the porch or joking around at home. But hey, Bucho, lay off on the mean comments! She is just wearing sweatpants, not committing some kind of mortal crime! >_<

I read many comments on the video (since I watch all my dramas online) and everyone was just as pissed as me. If being lazy and wearing sweats qualifies a woman as a Himono-onna, then I, as well as about 150 million Americans are Himono-onnas. And, guess what? We’re not hated by society for it!

I’m protesting the strict crazy dress code that Japanese society seems to be enforcing. Those poor women! If you can’t be yourself in the comfort of your own home, then when can you be? And, moreover, Teshima, if you can’t love your girlfriend for everything she is, sweats and all, then you are an awful boyfriend. Yeah, that’s right Teshima Makoto-kun, you lost my vote as an awesome character. I thought you were better than that!

Ah, well, I still have a few episodes to go, and the Season 2, YAY! Maybe things will get better, and my anger will diminish. After all, as I watch this drama, I am dressed in some pretty unflattering “home clothes” and I don’t feel this guilt and self-hatred, I just feel comfortable!

After all, comfort is what home is all about right? ^_^

Jaa~ Matta!


Zettai Kareshi: The Ending, and My Overall Opinion (Many Spoilers)

I know what you might be thinking: Two posts in a row about the same topic? WHY?

Ahhgghhh! I really fell in love with this drama, and though it’s over, I still feel under it’s spell. I felt compelled to rant about the ending and the ‘Special’ episode, as well as more of the more minor elements of this great J-drama. It is for sure one of my all-time favorite dramas, and possibly my favorite Japanese one.

The story really developed from a somewhat irritating and impossible romance to something truly golden and touching. I became attached to Riiko and Night’s relationship, I was really crying hard at the end. I think this takes the prize for the most tears shed during a drama. The screen kept blurring from all my tears, I could barely watch it.

I wasn’t sure whether to be pissed off, devastated, or touched by the ending. Night “dying” was certainly sad, and I was really crying over the little memoir video and such *tear* But somehow, despite how heartbreaking it was, I found it strangely sufficient, and I felt comfortable with it.

Then came the Special. I totally knew Night was going to be revived, and that the love triangle would be launched once more, but I found the Special to be MUCH less lovely than I had hoped for. I was happy to see that the characters and setting were blissfully unaltered (despite the Special being filmed years later) and I was excited at the prospect of Night and Riiko’s love being restored, but…it was just different. As much as I love Soshi-san, I really don’t feel much emotion from him, despite his so-called “love” for Riiko. I just see him as kind of the best friend type, and seeing those two as a couple is just super weird to me, it doesn’t fit.

Anyways, aside from a very un-romantic reunion, I felt the plot to be too long, complex, and unnecessary. The Special was TWO hours long, but they could have shaved off a good hour. The little romance between whats-her-name Robot creator and her robot lover-look alike was cute, but took up a little too much of the story line. I also felt that the creators were pumping a little too much action (aka, the secret agent/fighter robot/badass Namikiri segment) into the show. Perhaps if there had been a little less Kamiya and Nanase and more Riiko, Soshi and Night, I would have been more of a fan.

This whole Special wouldn’t have bothered me at all if I wasn’t still super pissed at the ending. I mean, what the hell?

IT ENDED EXACTLY THE SAME AS THE FIRST ENDING! What was the point of making a sequel if Night just ended up going off to die in the end AGAIN. I was practically on the edge of my seat saying “No, Riiko will turn around any minute and stop Night from leaving! Any minute now!” but she didn’t. And then, like before, she just went on back to Soshi, who she ignored and treated like crap and barely seems to spend much time with anyways. But, I gotta give him credit, he IS a human 😛


Well overall, despite my crazy and seemingly hateful ranting, I ADORED this sweet beautiful drama. The romance was oh so heartwarming, and I cried and said “awwww” far too many times. It was just…wow. What a great drama. This was K-drama quality for sure, and I really applaude Japan for turning what could have been a potentially stupid storyline into something really wonderful and moving. Yay!

“Absolute Boyfriend” Korea is being made, or I think might be airing right now. My beloved adorable Goo Hye Sun from BOF is the “Riiko”, so I might be tempted to watch, despite my usual aversion to watching the same drama in different nationalities, haha! Oh well, I’m sure it will be great.

The worst thing about J-dramas? Only 10ish episodes!! K-drama’s usually have close to 20, and are individually about 15-20 minutes longer. ARG! I wish Japan put more into length. 

 Ahh well, since I am headed to Japan in about 2 weeks (for the first time ever!) , I need to stock up on as much Japanese  as humanly possible, so I am dedicating the rest of August to watching strictly Japanese dramas, despite how difficult it can be to find good ones :/ My language skills depend on it! (If only I could find some juicy ones in Kansai dialect, grr)

Oh well, time to go!  Oyasumi, tomodachi!! ^_^