Ah, the endless allure of the Japanese high-school. The days of the beauty of youth and overwhelming innocence…Something that appeals quite a bit, it would seem, to pop god and on-the-side metal magician Nishikawa Takanori, who will spend some academic time away from abingdon boys school in order to go co-ed for Fuji TV’s new drama, Okusama wa 18-sai [My Wife is 18-Years-Old].
Okusama wa 18-Sai is based on the shoujo manga of the same name, as penned by Motomura Miyoko. Okusama wa 18-Sai revolves around the secret marriage between a Japanese-language teacher and his student, and was originally set to take place in the United States. The manga was serialized in Margaret magazine by Shueisha Publishing in 1969.
The secret relationship between teacher and student is one of the more popular topics in dramas and animes, and apparently is in no danger of losing popularity. Especially once Nishikawa gets in on it, I have no doubt the limelight relationship will cause all kinds of schoolgirl fantasies to unfurl…Unsatisfied, the principles of every Tokyo school district hope.
The show originally aired in 1970, catching the late Ishidate Tetsuo with his hand in the cookie-jar, and Okazaki Yuki as the kitten Okusama.
2011 brings Okusama wa 18-Sai back to Japan and the romantic tension of democratic classroom cleaning policies and a sea of plaid-skirted temptation, enough to drive any man over the edge. And we’re right there with Nishikawa Takanori as he navigates the plot-thick high-school days as teacher Takagi, who must hide his relationship with his wife Asuka (Watanabe Natsuna), who is also his student.
Although I’m sure he’ll have no trouble pretending he’s not married to her (most people try anyway, don’t they?), while sporting that impeccable blond coif Nishikawa may have a harder time convincing us that he’s not T.M.Revolution doing some kind of social services. That being said, for someone who just hit their 4th decade, Nishikawa is defying age as admirably as any Cullen, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he plays some 8th-grader in the next unnecessary Great Teacher Onizuka remake.
His variety show and hosting experience aside, Nishikawa has appeared in several other television dramas, such as “Beautiful Life“, and has also starred in the full-length film Corazon de Melon, which premiered at NYU’s Cantor Film Center in New York City on September 28, 2008.
Watanabe Natsuna has appeared in a smattering of shows since 2006, none of which I have heard of and therefore hardly feel motivated to list. She also appears in feature-films Kimi ni Todoke (2010) and GANTZ (2011).
Fetishes and immortality aside, Nishikawa’s newest venture into acting, Okusama wa 18-sai sounds like a charming drama, and I look forward to getting an opportunity to see the abingdon boys school frontman go totally co-ed.
The new TV series will be on air from 22:00 March 27th on Fuji TV, and so far has a scheduled run of 4 episodes.