Japanese TV miniseries based on George Michael & Wham! song
If you know the lyrics to the "Last Christmas" song, this TV miniseries follows the lyrics in its plot. It is a story of a man, Kenji Haruki, who was dumped by his fiancée on Christmas 2003, who works in a sports equipment company. A new coworker, Yuki Aoi, moves in next door to his apartment. She was recently divorced and suffers from a terminal illness and was a former gang member. Kenji is put off by Yuki who uses men for her benefit and is rather narrow minded. She returns home drunk one night and asks to get into her apartment through an adjoining door because she lost her key. A video tape that she recorded is pushed into his apartment when she gets into her apartment. Kenji discovers the video and views it as Yuki recorded a message to herself. His attitude towards her changes and he becomes more sympathetic to her. They become more sociable with each other and place a wager that the first one between them to fall in love will win a trip to see the Aurora Borealis (Kenji has kept a piece of polar ice in his freezer to celebrate his previous planned wedding with his fiancée which was to have included a honeymoon trip to see the Aurora lights). The TV series is mostly a flashback to how Kenji and Yuki became a couple in the three months prior to Christmas 2004. Most of the 11 episodes (9 hours total) carries the plot from their initial meeting up until the opening scene with Kenji walking in Yellowknife, Canada. The two of them have to work things out with other romantic entanglements. Yuki has a crush on another coworker, Naoya, and Kenji has romantic complications with a former schoolmate (Sachiko) and his ex-fiancée, Hitomi. There are also other romantic relationships in the series with the supporting cast. Kenji and Yuki fall in love halfway through the series, but their new found love is tested by a relapse of Yuki's illness. At the end of the series, Kenji fulfills his promise to Yuki to see the Aurora Borealis on Christmas Day. Yuji Oda and Akiko Yada provide good chemistry as the mismatched couple from the beginning. The supporting cast is excellent with a very funny role played by Tsuyoshi Ihara as Kenji's boss and college friend, Goro Shintani. A very nice Christmas theme comedy drama series with the series opening and closing Wham! songs sung by Yuji Oda.
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