The Quiz Show II
Genre: Psychological Mystery/Suspense
Air Dates: Every Saturdays @ 9:00 p.m., 04.18.2009 – 06.20.2009
Starring: Sho Sakurai, Yu Yokoyama, Aya Matsuura, Elena Misuzawa
More Info: D-Addicts Wiki
A popular (and controversial) TV quiz show is aired throughout the country in which contestants are handpicked to answer seven questions and a “Dream Chance” round, in which if the entire quiz show is cleared that the contestant will win an ultimate personal wish granted by the TV network. However, as the questions continued, the more personal they get, which forces the contestant to open up and confess for that contestant’s mistakes. All in all, the personal questions and the specifically selected contestants had connections to the past of the quiz show host’s six-year lost history and his mysterious relationship with the director of the quiz show and the true purpose of this particular quiz show is about.
Clever storytelling and a good cast portraying their roles so convincingly, there’s not a doubt that this had become one of my absolute favorites. I’m not being biased just because I am a huge fan of mysteries and suspense genres or the fact that I am a huge fan of the stormy dude himself, Sho Sakurai (otherwise I’d only be talking about him in this review), but I really love how the story structure was presented, the sequence of events, and such that would leave the audience completely hanging and go through deep contemplation mode.
Each episode seems repetitive of one another in terms of this sequence:
- A random contestant is presented an invitation to be a contestant on the quiz show.
- Contestant participates and answers the first few questions correctly.
- As the questions continue, they become personal questions in which the contestant is forced to answer in front of the public while the quiz show host continues to remind them that if they go all the way, they’ll have their wish come true.
- Once after that contestant breaks down and confesses a particular wrongdoing to the public, the quiz show host (Satoru Kamiya, played by Sakurai) begins to recollect a memory in which this particular contestant he just tested was actually involved in a very important past memory lost. It had something to do with what happened to him before he fell in to a coma for six years.
Once every episode is shown, more is unraveled to its mystery that could change the course of the quiz show host’s life and his relationships with the people he encountered in the past, as well as the person in charge of the quiz show, the director (Toshio Honma, played by Yokoyama). In the end, all the pieces of th epuzzle were completed and we learn who is the real guilty party.
This is actually the second season to the original The Quiz Show, which I still have yet to watch. The format is very similar to this but with different results and different reasons. Even until now I still feel overwhelmed by the storyline that it gave me a bit of inspiration to continue on with my original story project and I thank the writers for giving us a compelling story, even if it’s visual.
I admit also that the actors (mainly Sakurai and Yokoyama) portrayed their roles convincingly (as somewhat expected from the dudes of Johnny’s), but what I was impressed was with Yokoyama’s antagonist role of the vengeful-filled director Toshio Honma. He seems so good at being bad that I’ve given mad respects for giving us the chill of his real hidden agenda. Sakurai also did well as the TV quiz show host at a loss of his real self when he gains amnesia after reviving to life after six years of being in a vegetative coma. It’s about time he finally got a role of a “victim” compared to his past roles in TV dramas (and movies). Other two familiar names in there are Aya Matsuura (I don’t know much about her character so I can’t really say much) and Elena Misuzawa (since Koizora (drama), I start paying attention to her as well).
Subtitling was alright. I didn’t find that many mistakes in terms of translation and grammar. It was a very thorough, easy to understand story and the subtitles were easy to read as well. Other than minor mistakes, I have no complaints.
This is highly recommended for those who would want a more serious and somewhat of a mind-boggling story that would also leave you hanging on the cliffhangers, I suggest watching this. If you have a chance to watch the first season, watch that as well (and contact me and point me to a streaming site that has it!).