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Sunday, March 25, 2007

Channel surf

Following in the footsteps of the popular workplace-related drama series "Haken no Kinkaku," NHK has put together its own office miniseries, "Good Job," which airs this week, Monday to Friday, at 11 p.m on NHK-G.

An elite employee named Kuroki (Satoshi Tokushige) is transferred from his company's Sendai branch to Tokyo, where he is installed in the No. 2 Sales Department.

Eager to demonstrate his business acumen, Kuroki finds that the department is dominated by a group of OLs (office ladies).

Kuroki's arrival gets the women all excited and he becomes the focus of their working lives.

These women represent a wide range of personalities, from constantly annoyed to hopelessly naive to dangerously romantic.

The older women act as if they own the department, but the most extreme may be Ue-chan (Nao Matsushita), who is the type of person who cannot relax unless everything is in its proper place.

She, it turns out, is the person who has been assigned to make Kuroki feel at home.

World-famous animator Hayao Miyazaki will be the subject of NHK's profile show "The Professional" (NHK-G, Tuesday, 10 p.m.).

Miyazaki is famous for not granting interviews, and the program will provide a rare glimpse into his life and working conditions.

At 66, Miyazaki is the undisputed king of Japanese animation. All his films have been huge box-office hits in Japan.

The director will discuss his past and how he goes about creating a full-length movie.

He will also talk about his next project, "Gake no ue no Ponyo (Ponyo on the top of the Cliff)," an original story about a goldfish named Ponyo who wants to be human and her relationship to a 5-year-old boy named Sosuke.

One of the late Shohei Imamura's most admired movies was "Fukushu Suru wa Ware ni Ari," which in the West was released as "Vengeance is Mine."

The 1979 movie was based on the true story of Iwao Enokizu, who was hanged in 1970 for multiple murders.

Imamura's lurid film did not cover the three days prior to Enokizu's arrest in Kumamoto in 1963.

On Wednesday at 8 p.m., TV Tokyo will present a new dramatization with the same title that covers only these three days.

At that point, Enokizu had left a string of bodies throughout Japan and was the subject of a massive manhunt that he ingeniously eluded for more than three months.

Assuming the identity of one his victims whose body had yet to be discovered, he made his way west from Tokyo to Kyushu, where he met a prison chaplain who was collecting money for a campaign to end the death penalty.

Enokizu planned to swindle him out of the money, but events took a different turn.

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