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Sunday, May 9, 2010


Kimutaku in 'Moon Lovers'; 'unmarriageable' celebs; CM of the week: Daihatsu's Tanto EXE

In what's being promoted as his "first full-scale love story" in 10 years, SMAP heartthrob Takuya Kimura stars as a successful furniture manufacturer in "Tsuki no Koibito" (Moon Lovers; Fuji TV, Mon., 9 p.m.).

Rensuke (Kimura) has become a major force in Japanese interior design with a policy of trying to please as many consumers as possible. He built his furniture empire from scratch, and now has his sights set on China.

He plans to build his first overseas Regolith furniture store in Shanghai, but construction is being held up by local demonstrators who claim that the opening of the new store means the closing of factories that employ them. Rensuke has asked his old schoolmate, Maemi (Ryoko Shinohara), to do the interior design for the new store, and the two of them travel to the site and meet with a representative of the factory workers, a woman named Shumei (Lin Chiling). It's a meeting that changes the lives of all three participants.

There is a sub-category of TV personalities whose main claim to fame is their purported "unmarriageable" status. Eight such celebrities are featured on the variety show "Ichihachi" (TBS/ Wed., 10 p.m.).

Most of these show biz staples, however, insist that being unwed is not, in fact, a problem. Issa of the Okinawan boy band Da Pump, for instance, should have no trouble at all finding a mate, and says that if he remains single it's only because he prefers it that way.

Nevertheless, they are there to compete for the title of "most unmarriageable show biz personality," a determination that is carried out by means of surveying average people on the street and interviewing friends and colleagues to find out why this or that person really isn't married. In the end, the eight bachelors and bachelorettes bicker over the results.

CM of the week

Daihatsu's Tanto EXE:

A pair of men dressed in kimono look out on the four American ships at anchor in Edo Bay and gesticulate wildly, fretting over the future of Japan. Suddenly, SMAP idol Shingo Katori, speaking in a thick Kochi dialect, reassures them there is nothing to fear, because the head of the visiting American mission, Commodore Matthew Perry, is sitting in the back of his Daihatsu Tanto EXE micro-van enjoying some traditional Japanese confection.

By his getup and the accent, it's obvious that Katori is meant to be Sakamoto Ryoma, the currently hip historical figure who was instrumental in bringing about the Meiji Restoration of 1867. Exactly how Perry's bribery by dango (sweet dumplings) aids Ryoma's diplomatic designs isn't very clear, but Perry looks to be a big man so we can assume that the mini-van has lots of leg room in the back.

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