Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Japanese Drama - Code Blue / Doctor Heli Kinkyu Kyumei

After i have finished watching "Moonlight Resonance", i'm currently watching this Japanese medical drama "Code Blue" which is equally as exciting and heartwarming. I have always enjoy watching medical drama and i found out online that this drama was quite popular in Japan when it was shown from 3 July 2008 to 12 September 2008. Fuji TV had assembled a group of young stars and experienced ones. Based on a national proposal for an emergency helicopter system, the series revolves around a service called Doctor Heli that quickly brings medical aid to those needing immediate medical attention.

The story goes that a special bill was passed in June 2007 that should foster widespread adoption of the system. Tomohisa Yamashita stars as a young training "flight doctor," Aizawa Kousaku who is a talented doctor and appears arrogant at times while Yui Aragaki (Shiraishi Megumi) , Erika Toda (Hiyama Mihoko), and Yosuke Asari (Fujikawa Kazuo) play his fellow "flight doctors" in training and "rivals".

Yui is an observant and caring doctor but she lacks the confidence that Aizawa has and always supresses her emotions. Hiyama is a straight forward person and one scene that touches me in the earlier episodes was when she was not afraid to admit that she could not cope alone with the injured pregnant lady and seeked help from her mentor. After the incident, she acknowledged her failings and works hard to fulfill her dream of being a "flight doctor". Among the 4 of them, Fujikawa appears to be the weakest in term of his medical skills. However in epsiode 1, he was assigned to take care of Kuriyma, a 15 old year girl who was suffering from kidney failure and diabetes and has to go through dialysis daily. She had to amputate one of her hands and Fujikawa was very caring towards her and identifies with her fear and encourages her not to give up on life. I'm sure lot of viewers were touched like me :>

The training "flight doctors" are guided by a skilled team of "flight doctors," played by Toshiro Yanagiba (Kuroda Shuji), Ryo (Mitsui Kanna), and Masanobu Katsumura (Morimoto Tadashi). Kuroda is a strict mentor and believes that only the best (meaning talented and observant doctor) is qualified to become a "flight doctor" and encourages rivarly among the training "flight doctors" so as to bring out the best in them. Mitsui believes in letting the training "flight doctors" explore and giving them opportunities to be independent so that they can learn through their experiences and become real "flight doctors" .

According to Video Research Ltd.'s viewership data, the last episode had ratings of 19.5%, putting the entire series average at 15.9%. With the rest of this season's dramas almost over as well, it appears that "Code Blue" will have the highest ratings of the summer. Due to the popularity of the drama, Fuji TV has announced that a special 2 hour episode will air during the New Year's period at the start of 2009 and i'm looking forward to watching the special. The special episode is set to take place after the events of the final episode. The main cast has been confirmed as returning, including Tomohisa Yamashita, Yui Aragaki, Erika Toda, Manami Higa, and Yosuke Asari.

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