As Jun suggest since I have been feeling overly stressed out recently due to the very tense atmosphere at the junior high school, I called in today to say that I was not going in. There is really no point for me being there anyway as it is a test taking day so all I do is sit at my desk for 8 hours taking up space. It feels good to take a day off to just relax. Jun and I have some plans for this afternoon once he gets back from school. I wont spoil the surprise of what we will be doing because I fully intend to write about it later. Let’s just say it is going to be awesome and sweet.
So, since I am home and just doing things that I want to do, I thought it only fitting to post about something Japanese that I enjoy: Japanese dramas. The drama I am going to introduce today is actually one of the first Japanese dramas that I really got into and, surprise surprise, it is a school based drama. The drama is called Gokusen, which is an abrevation of Gokudo no Sensei which means “Gangster Teacher.”
Like most Japanese dramas, Gokusen originated as a manga and was written by Kozueko Morimoto. The manga was first published in 2000 and ran 15 volumes. In 2002, the manga was adapted into a television drama with Yukie Nakama in the title role. An animated adaptation ran in Nippon Television from 6 January 2004 to 30 March 2004. The drama is pretty cheesy and the actors who play the students can be downright terrible at the beginning of each season, but and it provides a good moral lessons about what is right and what is wrong.
Synopsis of Season One
Season One’s Theme
The story of a young, idealistic teacher who enters Shirokin Gakuen with hopes of making a difference in the students’ lives. However, Yamaguchi Kumiko is in for a rude awakening when she finds that she will be the homeroom teacher of 3-D, the hardest class to maintain in the school. The students have multi-colored hair, sloppy uniforms, and show absolutely no respect to her. The leader of the class, Sawada Shin is lazy but bright and shows some interest in Yamaguchi when he notices that she is very different from other teachers. The students try to bully her to make her quit, but their attempts don’t get them very far.
What the class and the rest of the school does not know is that Yamaguchi Kumiko is actually the 4th generation heir to the Ooedo Group, a notorious yakuza clan. Even though her family would like her to take the title of Ojou when her grandfather dies, they have accepted the fact that Yamaguchi would rather be a teacher.
Eventually, the students learn to respect their quirky teacher because of her devotion to them, and even give her a nickname: Yankumi.
You can watch season one here.
Synopsis of Season Two
Season two’s theme song (and my favorite!)
Half a year has passed and Shirokin Gakuen has closed down. Yamaguchi Kumiko (Nakama Yukie) finds herself a teacher of a few young kids who don’t really benefit much from her style of teaching. Through some twist of fate, she is offered a job as a teacher in Kurogin Gakuen.
She becomes the teacher of a delinquent 3D class which make her previous students look like angels. In order to protect her job, she must again hide her true identity — the fact that she is the 4th generation of the Oedo Family, a prominent yakuza group.
You can watch season two here.
Synopsis of Season Three
Season three’s theme
Sawatari Goro now works at Akado High School as a vice principal. Although the head director of the school board speficically orders him to handle the problematic class 3-D, the students are just too much for him. So Sawatari goes far away to a southern island to search for Yankumi, and convince her to work for Akado. Yankumi accepts the offer, only to find that her class (again) is full of punks, where two rival groups of students are always at each other’s throats. Will Yankumi’s strong belief in students and teaching work this time?
You can watch season three here.
Season one was by far the best out of all the seasons, but each season has its good points. A movie is coming out on the 11th and you count on me going to see it!
Gokusen The Movie trailer
You should be sure to check this series out if you have time. If nothing else, there are a lot of very pretty boys.