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Drama

No matter how much the night is dark

夜がどれほど暗くても

Your Tales of the Unusual

How should someone who realizes that he is himself involved in an evil navigate the mercilessly thorny path ahead? More than just a story of downfall, this is also one of the transformation born of one man's regret and persistence

Michinari Shiga (TAKAYA KAMIKAWA) is deputy editor-in-chief of a magazine that keeps itself going with sensationalized stories of scandal and dirt on the people involved. But one day an incident stands Shiga's life of fulfillment and journalist's pride on their head: his college-age son stalks and murders someone, then kills himself on the spot. Suddenly the tables are turned, and now it's Shiga and his family journalists are after, sniffing around for scandal and dirt on them. His employer relegates him to another magazine, and his marriage suffers and sours. Amid the crisis, an encounter with a girl helps Shiga discover the will to pick up and move on. He begins to seek the truths about his son's incident. What rays of light will he find in the depths of the night's darkness?

Starring:
TAKAYA KAMIKAWA
SHIGEAKI KATO
YUI OKADA

The Road to Murder

殺意の道程みちのり

Your Tales of the Unusual

An innovative suspense comedy with a serious theme--revenge, depicted with minutia of the kind and realism most shows leave out!

Takaki Kubota, president of a small company in the carboard business, kills himself after being driven into a corner by Yoshiyuki Murooka, president of customer. Having been taken in by Murooka, Kubota is deeply in debt and his company fails. Despairing the loss of everything he had, he throws himself off a roof. Kazuma (ARATA IURA), his son, pairs up with Mitsuru Azuma (BAKARHYTHM), a cousin, and the two vow to take revenge on Murooka, who lives in luxury with no sign of ever being brought to justice. But Kazuma and Mitsuru, having never done anything like this before, struggle with details--like coming up with the perfect murder, getting "supplies," and practicing their plan's execution. Watching them stumble along, one begins to wonder: Will they ever be able to avenge Kubota's death?

Starring:
BAKARHYTHM
ARATA IURA
MAYU HOTTA
YUI SAKUMA
SHINGO TSURUMI

A Day-Off of RYOMA TAKEUCHI

竹内涼真の撮休

Your Tales of the Unusual

Part two of this unique show about actors who get an unexpected day off from shooting, created by an enthusiastic group of directors and writers. In this installment of the series, popular Japanese actor Ryoma Takeuchi plays himself in eight parallel stories. How will the busy actor spend his sudden day off in the midst of an otherwise busy shooting schedule? The creators give their imaginations full play in their portrayal of the actor's off-the-set persona, something fans rarely get a glimpse of.

In the first episode, "Alluring Spice Curry," Takeuchi visits a spice shop on his surprise day off from shooting. Hearing that he wants to make spiced curry, Kaoru, the shop's owner, starts giving him lessons on spices. One thing leads to another, and the two end up preparing a curry dish together. Just as they're getting into the task, a man walks into the shop. . .

Starring:
RYOMA TAKEUCHI
GUEST:
EIKO KOIKE, MARIKA MATSUMOTO, HONOKA MATSUMOTO, AOI MORIKAWA

THE CONFESSION OF SIRENS

セイレーンの懺悔

Your Tales of the Unusual

A mystery series based on a novel many thought too hard to adapt for screen, its electrifying story cuts to the chase of a journalistic taboo

Takami Asakura (YUKO ARAKI), in her second year with a major TV station's flagship news show, is a committed journalist who takes pride in her job despite a painful past. But the program is on the verge of cancellation because of a series of scandals.
One day, there's an abduction of a Tokyo high-school girl. Asakura and Taichi Satoya, a senior journalist, pair up to get a scoop on the incident that could save the show. Tailing police to a disused factory, Asakura happens upon the victim's body; her face has been burnt mercilessly. Asakura digs deeper, discovering elements of the incident that overlap with her own haunting past. But she carries on, and her persistence pays off. She lands her scoop, which leads to the perp. Then the revelation sparks another incident, prompting her to ask: Who else are bad guys here? And what, if anything, does justice mean to journalists?

Starring:
YUKO ARAKI
HIROYUKI IKEUCHI
RIN TAKANASHI
MASANOBU TAKASHIMA

THE GREAT OEDO JOURNEY

大江戸グレートジャーニー ~ザ・お伊勢参り~

Your Tales of the Unusual

A good-for-nothing makes his way from Edo to the Grand Shrine at Ise in this light-hearted story that's part travelogue, part period drama

Tatsugoro (RYUHEI MARUYAMA), once a legendary gambler, has bet his way into heavy debt at an infamous gambling den. With no family, he's spent his life gambling, winning and losing as luck and skill would dictate; but now fate seems to have abandoned him. Then one day in 1830, he pulls a lot that sends him on a pilgrimage to the Grand Shrine at Ise to worship on behalf of everyone in his tenement. On the way, he encounters Okinamaru, a dog sent on the pilgrimage as a proxy for its owner; Sankichi, an indentured boy who's given his master the slip; and Saya, a woman hoping the shrine's gods will free her from her troubles. Posing as a family, the four proceed on a journey filled with unforeseen adventure as--unbeknownst to the travelers--a notorious debt collector and his sidekick are in hot pursuit!

Starring:
RYUHEI MARUYAMA
KYOKO YOSHINE
TAIYO SAITO

THE SUN STANDS STILL -THE ECLIPSE-

太陽は動かない -THE ECLIPSE-

Your Tales of the Unusual

A challenging story whose visual adaptation was said to be impossible--the ultimate rush-against-the-clock entertainment!

Outwardly AN Press is an Asian news service like any other. But on the inside, it's a secret organization handling covert operations with repercussions for all the world's countries. Agent Kazuhiko Takano (TATSUYA FUJIWARA) and his rookie partner Ryoichi Taoka (RYOMA TAKEUCHI) infiltrate a building project for the International World City Expo to take place in Tokyo three years hence. Hired by Chusonji, a powerful bureaucrat, they are mandated with gathering intelligence about a web of political intrigue over the location's land-use rights. One day, a blast lays the construction site in ruins right before their eyes.

Starring:
TATSUYA FUJIWARA
RYOMA TAKEUCHI
KOICHI SATO

PIPLE: My Married Life with an AI

ぴぷる~AIと結婚生活はじめました~

Your Tales of the Unusual

"My wife arrived today!" A heart-warming science-fiction comedy that looks into novel forms of love

It's 2030, and AI droids can marry and are even welcomed into families.
After the jolt he gets from a date gone bad with the girl of his dreams--a admired senior colleague, the drab white-collar worker Ken'ichi Tsumiki (YUKI KAJI) buys an appealing AI girl-droid "equipped" for sex, takes "her" as his wife, and names her Piple. But for some inexplicable reason, Piple (AYAKA WILSON) spurns his advances on their first night together. Visiting Piple's developers, Tsumiki meets the geeky AI researcher Kaede Miyama. She tells Tsumiki that the problem is in the way he set Piple up--something that, sadly, couldn't be changed. But Miyama has an idea, and she makes a surprising suggestion. Tune in to find out what happens when he gives it a try!

Starring:
YUKI KAJI
AYAKA WILSON
SAKURAKO OHARA

ISEKAI IZAKAYA, NOBU

異世界居酒屋「のぶ」

Your Tales of the Unusual

The long-awaited live-action version of an immensely popular novel series (over 3 million copies sold)

On a quiet street in Kyoto, Nobu--a Japanese-style pub--has an entrance that leads to Aitheria, a medieval Europe-like alternate world. Nobuyuki Yazawa (RYOHEI OTANI), its owner and a former Japanese restaurant cook, and Shinobu Senke (RENA TAKEDA), the pub's bright, sharp-witted poster-girl waitress, start catering to the citizens of Aitheria. A cold beer called Toriaezu-Nama ("a draft for starters") turns out to be a customer favorite, and the pub starts to thrive. People from all walks of life--soldiers, craftspeople, merchants, even nobles--casually drop in for a drink. Surprised and delighted by the strange food and drink Nobu offers, they relax, enjoy themselves, and leave their worries behind.

Starring:
RYOHEI OTANI
RENA TAKEDA

BONES OF STEEL

鉄の骨

Your Tales of the Unusual

A young man questions his priorities: Loyalty to company over trust in justice? Do the right thing, or accomplish the mission? Which ideals should prevail?

Heita Tomishima (RYUNOSUKE KAMIKI) is a very conscientious but awkward young man at a mid-sized construction company. He loves working on-site, but one day is suddenly transferred to Operations, a unit whose work is totally outside his comfort zone. Its remit is to land major projects, including public works, and inhouse it's cynically known as the Bid Rigging Department. Working under a crusty-old director, a crass macho type, a go-getter doyenne, and a cunning manager adept at hiding his true intentions, Heita dedicates himself to winning a public works contract worth billions. But the more he interacts with an industry fixer who manipulates the bidding process, the more Heita is witness to greed and collusion. He begins to question whether all this bid rigging is a necessary evil some sort. Despite his inner conflict over the gap between what's right and what is, Heita begins to feel a certain sense of mission in his job, which is key to his organization's future. The company is a bold innovator, making it a top bidding contender. But a powerful rival's executives are busy running interference.

Starring:
RYUNOSUKE KAMIKI
SHIDO NAKAMURA
TAO TSUCHIYA
KOYUKI
KYOHEI SHIBATA
OSAMU MUKAI
KANJI ISHIMARU
SEIYO UCHINO
ORIGINAL STORY:
JUN IKEIDO

A Day-Off of KASUMI ARIMURA

有村架純の撮休

Your Tales of the Unusual

When what was supposed to be a day of principal photography suddenly turns into a day off, how might she spend the time?

In the first episode, "After My Homecoming," Kasumi goes back home after a long absence. Yumiko, her mom, meets her at the station and together they head for house she grew up in. Just as they're making small talk, Makoto Ueshima, a man Kasumi's never seen before, walks in on them. As he pays his respects to her father at the household altar, Yumiko asks him to fix her bicycle in a manner hinting that they might be close. From there the story gets interesting as Yumiko invites Makoto to join them for dinner.

Starring:
KASUMI ARIMURA 有村架純
Director:
HIROKAZU KOREEDA, SANTA YAMAGISHI, RIKIYA IMAIZUMI, SATOKO YOKOHAMA, MEGUMI TSUNO

OPERATION Z

オペレーションZ~日本破滅、待ったなし~

Your Tales of the Unusual

Daring yet brutal reforms--Project Operation Z--are about to be implemented. Can default be averted? Will they lead to revitalization or total collapse?

This is a story about Japan's budget policies as it faces impending fiscal doom. The government is supposed to maintain citizens' standard of living and ensure the same for their children, but it is mired in over a quadrillion yen debt that just keeps piling up. Prime Minister Takamori Ejima declares a 50% reduction in general accounts expenditure to carry Japan into the future. He charges Atsushi Suo, Rumi Nakakoji, and two other elite bureaucrats with implementing the Operation Z project entailing massive reforms. Social programs account for the largest piece of the national budget pie, followed by national tax revenues shared with local governments. Can cutting them to the bone really avert fiscal disaster? What repercussions will Operation Z have for the nation?

Starring:
MASAO KUSAKARI
JUNPEI MIZOBATA
MARYJUN TAKAHASHI

Pareto's Miscalculation: The Case Worker Murder

パレートの誤算~ケースワーカー殺人事件

Your Tales of the Unusual

A mystery revealing a dark side of social welfare and new hope for it as the protagonist uncovers a fraud shrouded by a case worker's murder

Satomi Makino (AI HASHIMOTO) is a part-timer in the social welfare section at city hall who longs to work full-time. One day she gets asked to fill a case worker vacancy, putting her in a position to deal directly with people receiving benefits. Satomi is anxious about her new assignment but encouraged by Yamakawa, an experienced case who assures her that case working is quite fulfilling. The plot thickens a day later when Yamakawa is found dead in the aftermath of an apartment fire that's likely arson. But who would want to murder a case worker so loved and respected by the clients he served?

Starring:
AI HASHIMOTO
TAKAHISA MASUDA

THE CHOSEN FOUR -THE REASONS WE LIVE ON MARS-

ワケあって火星に住みました~エラバレシ4ニン~

THE CHOSEN FOUR -THE REASONS WE LIVE ON MARS

A sit-com set on Mars inspired by Mars One, a real-life project to colonize the red planet! The screenplay is written by Osamu Suzuki, the inimitable hit maker behind many popular drama series and variety shows in Japan.

Year 2030-scientists striving to establish a human colony on Mars start sending the chosen settlers in groups of four to the planet. Only four can be sent at a time-the selected four entrusted with the future of mankind.
As the project progresses around the world, WASA Aerospace Center in Japan launches its program. It auditions several thousand candidates and selects men and women of various generations and professional backgrounds. It is a one-way ticket to Mars. The people delegated to this mission include a chef, a banker, a police detective, a trimmer, a clothes shop clerk, a businessman, a nursery school teacher, a veterinarian...A new type of entertainment featuring teams of "four settlers on Mars" played by Japan's leading actors!

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