VERY IMPORTANT NOTICE

A must read, if you don't already know ...








Written by Funn Lim



"By the way I am still obsessed with this series. I need a cure!"






DON'T PANIC! THIS IS A REALLY LONG REVIEW! BE WARNED!


Released in
2007

Based on
Novels by Higashino Keigo.

No. of Episodes
10 regular 1 hour episodes plus 1 feature length episode entitled Episode 0

Cast-Character
Fukuyama Masaharu as Yukawa Manabu (Galileo himself)
Shibasaki Kou as Utsumi Kaoru (rookie police detective)
Kitamura Kazuki as Kusanagi Shunpei (HQ detective, former university mate of Yukawa)
Shinagawa Hiroshi as Yuge Shiro (partner of Utsumi)
Watanabe Ikkei as Kuribayashi Hiromi (lab assistant of Yukawa)
Maya Miki as Jonouchi Sakurako (coroner)

and plenty of famous guest stars but I can only recognise a few due to my ignorance of Japanese stars. For entire list, check here.

Relationship chart
Found this wonderful and easy to understand chart at d-addicts. Final proof that this MUST be a very popular and well loved series, because if not no one would bother with relationship charts! In English too!




Plot Summary
In "Galileo," Fukuyama Masaharu plays a genius physicist and university associate professor, Yukawa Manabu, who solves difficult mysteries. Affectionately known as Tantei Galileo ("Detective Galileo"), Yukawa is brilliant, an all-round sportsman, tall and handsome but eccentric. Yukawa's partner is a rookie cop, Utsumi Kaoru (Shibasaki Kou), a hot-blooded woman with a strong sense of justice.

Taken from d-addicts.

Episodic Titles
01 Burns
Summary : a young delinquent's head suddenly and mysteriously caught on fire and he burnt to death.

02 Floats
Summary : a young boy unwittingly becomes an alibi to a murder suspect and his testimony collaborates with the suspect except that the boy claims to have seen the suspect's car in an out of body experience

03 Rattles
Summary : a young woman is looking for her missing husband in a house that mysteriously rattles and shakes every night

04 Rots
Summary : a girl seemingly drowns in her own pool, however one tiny part of her body gave in to suspiscion where it mysteriously rots when it shouldn't be

05 Strangles
Summary : a man dies of mysterious circumstances, strangled but there seems to be contradictions to how he died

06 Dreams
Summary : a young man climbs into a young girl's house, having seen her messages in water to meet her in her room and is hunted by the police for attempted rape where he is convinced they were destined to be with one another

07 Predicts
A man sees his lover hanging herself, except he has already seen the same scenario a week before!

08 Sees
Summary : a sister saw her older sister outside the balcony only to be told at the very same time, her sister was dead from 200 stab wounds to her body.

09 Bursts Part 1
Summary : 2 men mysteriously died with exposure to radiation, setting up a climatic confrontation between Yukawa and his mentor.

10 Bursts Part 2
Summary : Yukawa must race against time to dismantle a nuclear bomb to save Tokyo and a trapped Utsumi.

Comments
I wrote the review for the movie follow up of this series before I knew of the existence of this series. I loved Suspect X and said I wished Yukawa Manabu has his own series. Before I even posted the review for 2 days, Sehseh kindly informed me that there was a series and the movie was a spin off from that series. I should have known. Very rare Japanese TV actors ever cross over to movies or vice versa and almost always the materials are from manga or novels or some folklores. Having seen the trailer for Suspect X on TV, I was intrigued because I saw a flash of Fukuyama Masaharu, the only Japanese actor whose name I know without even an ounce of effort. Being a fan of his (after watching like 1 of his series only),I decided to check out Suspect X. After becoming rather big fan of Suspect X, I decided to check out the TV series, Galileo and to tell you the truth, in retrospect the movie and the TV series are so distinctly different BUT that being said, you can watch the movie and will be able to follow the story without watching the TV series. But the fun in watching the TV series is watching how the relationships are established.

In restrospect, Suspect X is a dead serious movie. The TV series is also serious but with a dash of comedy in every episode, either in Utsumi's bumbling ways or Yukawa's rather clueless ways. I read Utsumi was never in the novels and so I believe inserting Utsumi into the TV series and the movie is a brilliant move; she is now my favourite female character simply because of how the character is written and how well the actress, Shibasaki Kou played her. More on that later.

Every episode in Galileo presents a seemingly impossible crime being committed, and in every episode Yukawa would hypothesise and then solve the how. What I love about this series is the coroner would explain what is seen on the body. Yukawa explains the how the murder was committed. BUT it is for Utsumi to uncover the where, why and when. Yukawa has no interest in the humanity aspect although he is not as heartless as I may describe him to be. As a scientist he is naturally detached. But he is also a scientist with a sense of responsibility, which makes him slightly different and better from the rest. Utsumi is not as bumbling as I describe her to be because she notices facts and is persistent in uncovering the truth. Whilst Yukawa may be anti social and thanks to Utsumi he has a social life (but he is happy being all by himself), Utsumi is also quick to form a judgment, almost always a favourable judgment eventhough she hardly knows the person. Her inability to hate anyone contrasts well with Yukawa's ability to detach himself from everyone and it is great to see these 2 forces coming together and fighting with one another. But no worries, there aren't any fighting so to speak. Utsumi admires and deeply respects Yukawa for his scientific mind as well as his rather good looking looks whilst Yukawa must like Utsumi to help her even when the questions goes beyond physics or science. Is there love? Not even in the movie. It is not Yukawa's inability or rejection of love, in fact many times Yukawa was teased by Utsumi about love and girlfriends and he does consider having one but I believe he just loves being alone and left alone to do what he does best; science. He did contemplate love but maybe it his weird ways, his inability to form a meaningful love relationship that is stopping him. He is called Galileo (he is a genius to his contemporaries) the Weird (for obvious reasons) not for nothing. I believe if Yukawa is a real person, he is a very difficult man to love. He can be cold and too fact based and yet as this series went on to show and to reveal, Yukawa sinsei is a man with a sense of responsibility, guilt even and helpful when he wants to be. He is often enticed into a case with interesting facts, which makes me think of Dr Gregory House of House MD and he may be a genius, but like the movie demonstrates, he is in the end a flawed genius. In the last episode he told Utsumi he is not a good man person which Utsumi strongly disagrees. He sees his own inadequacies and his own flaws. A man that can recognise his own faults can't be a bad person.

Contrast that to Utsumi who is a person with a strong sense of justice, who does her job to know why rather than just how. Many time Yukawa warns her that she is too guided by her emotions and often she lets her emotions get the better of her. But that what makes her so interesting and contrast so well with Yukawa; she brings out the gentleness and the warmth in Yukawa. Not that Yukawa is a cold hearted bastard but he just doesn't show much emotion. The cases she brings to him makes him question humanity and what the murderers are capable of. Many times it is because of Utsumi that I see Yukawa as a human being, a person capable of forming a meaningful relationship with someone. In some ways he did form a working and a somewhat personal relationship with Utsumi. Not a strictly love relationship but a better one; one that is based on mutual respect. And you have got to respect Utsumi; she works hard, fights hard and wonders hard but in the end her heart is in the right places as is Yukawa whose mind is in the right places.

When these 2 are together, I appreciate the many laugh out loud scenes between the 2. I also love how Yukawa would always deny Utsumi's claim of supernatural. Utsumi, a grown police officer believes in ghosts, supernatural and fortune telling. Yukawa is a man of science and no more and definitely no less. He would debunk her theories and yet he is capable of believing in teleportation! I find that hilarious in its own unique way. To me teleportation is like apparition; can't be true. But he sincerely believes it. I also like how his logical mind works, and all his explanation may have science in it, but they're also logical.

I have read some criticisms of this series, unfairly compairing this series to the more atrocious Numbers. I can tell you one thing for sure; Galileo is a much well written and better series than the nonsensical Numbers. It is better than all CSIs combined. And it is the type of series Forensic Heroes wished it is. Of course on the surface there is nothing similar with all these series. I would say Galileo is more similar to House MD than everything I stated here but in the end it deals with an impossible death, investigation as to How by an expert being called in and the police concluding with the why. Galileo succeeds in putting all these elements together and may I say, with style aplenty.

Each episode is clearly defined into possibly 3 segments. First is the crime as to What happened which would include some investigation. Then Yukawa comes into the picture to investigate with Utsumi and would then enter into the 2nd segment that is the How explanation, almost accompanied by that soundtrack whereby Yukawa would run to find something to write on his theories (some formula I can never see completely) which would include an experiment being conducted and the final segment is the Why explanation which would be Utsumi to inform Yukawa the motive of the crime, even if Yukawa is not even remotely interested. It may sound formulaic but it works.

However the one part that may become tiresome to some is the part where Yukawa runs to write on something his formula for the crime (as in How it happened). Hear the music and that's the cue where he runs and find amazingly a pen, a charcoal, a chalk, a mist, something to write and his signature pose, palm on his face with eyes peeping out. Believe me, it is a very stylish pose but for 10 episodes you see the same thing, it can get rather predictable. I am not sure if Suspect X has that, I really can't remember. However I like style and so I like those scenes. It is just funny to see where he can write on and with what. I hope to do a screencapture of his formula even if sometimes I feel there can't be any connection between the formula and the How factor. But who knows, he is into physics and he is a physicist and so maybe his (X+Y)x(t^1@3) whatever may legitimately solve the How factor. It may not solve a crime as every crime must and should have a motive and that is Utsumi's job.

There is however one aspect I wasn't very keen on, something I know is essential how all rounder our Yukawa is but sometimes can be quite a bit like "Let's all ADORE Yukawa". I know Yukawa looks dreamy and can be dreamy eventhough like I said in real life Yukawa would be very difficult to love. He is just plain weird and difficult sometimes. I doubt he can be passionate as a person to a person as he is very passionate to science. The sometimes embarassing scenes would be where Yukawa is shown rock climbing, then playing squash, then cooking, lying on the bed sleeping, etc. And when he is rock climbing or playing squash, notice how the camera would zoom to his arms, in a rather loving and adoring way. Perhaps the camera man is in love with Fukuyama Masaharu or maybe they're trying to make him into a sex symbol (which Masha is justifiably so BUT Yukawa? Maybe not) and to have Utsumi looking at him wide eyed and all can be quite over the top. I was waiting for that one scene where he plays the piano and sings. Alas, none whatsoever. But athletic is good. Yukawa can even cook! It's like LOOK! YUKAWA CAN COOK! LOOK AT YUKAWA'S SINEWY MUSCLE! sort of scenes.

Muscle or not, is debatable. Masha is a bit too slim but he does have well toned arms. And may I say he is tall too, but that is because Shibasaki Kou is the shortest in the series and also the ceilings in the series is just too low, thus making Masha seems 6 feet tall when I am sure he isn't.

And talking about height, let's talk about fashion. I love Shibasaki Kou fashion in a serious sense. Her hair, her make up, her suit, all perfectly embodies her as a detective, however silly she may be as Utsumi. As for Masha, he is always in a vest, knitted or otherwise, shirt with collar and long sleeves, trousers (never jeans) and oh my God, his messy but probably took 3 hours to style hair! I love his hair! Overall I like the tone and the fashion. What I didn't like is of course the architecture.

Japanese homes, apartments, etc are all so depressing looking. Even those mansion old types look depressing. Inside the ceilings are so low, the passageway so narrow, the colour like standard industrial colour and realistically some apartments faces the factory. Even Yukawa's office which is a messy science lab is boring looking. His classroom looks colourless. As in Suspect X which shows the beggars and the homeless, in Galileo shockingly we get to see delinquents (some may argue deserves the death sentence) and beautifully polluted river with guess what? Fridges!! Even trash and garbage dump sites. Amazing! What is colourful though is in Episode 1; the university students with the afro and skateboards. That was fun to watch. The only colourful houses are those belonging to murder suspects.

And what else is fun to watch? The little stuff. I really miss what was shown in Episode 1; the way Yukawa holds his classroom enthralled with whatever he was saying and almost if not all of his students are female. He would hold his microphone and point to some student for answers like a superstar holding his own concert. I love that scene and would have wished for more except after that no more such scene. We are confined to his lab, where he would hold all sort of dangerous experiments (like recreating lightning!) and even cook in there. Also in Episode 1, we get to see Yukawa conducting his experiment in the open field, after that no more such scenes. Maybe budget was lesser?

As for what are the students actually doing, physics or graduate physics I am not sure. I am not a physicist but I am quite certain some aspect is more high school material than graduate student material. But who cares? It all looks cool.

So are the experiments as in the How aspect real? I don't know. There is a warning at the end of each episode not to conduct such experiment at home. Some may complain they're far too complicated. The point is Utsumi presents to Yukawa some very complicated supposition and it is for Yukawa to explain how it all happened. If someone wants to commit a crime or commits a crime in a very different way that would have the police so dumbfounded, perhaps these over the top methods are justified. Frankly I find nothing silly about the How although I may sometimes find the Why factor a bit silly. Of all the 10 episodes, I find each episode's How factor rather clever, like I did with Suspect X. Very little is talked on the victim or the perpetrator, more on the crime itself but that doesn't mean we don't get to see the humanity factor. Of all 10 episodes, I find episodes 1, 2, 3 and 10 the best of the rest, with the saddest being episode 3 and the silliest (as in the Why factor with an impossible How factor) to be Episode 5. Most shocking would be episode 4 simply because of the Why as well as the villain exposing his buttocks! Funniest is Episode 6 follows closely by Episode 10. Frankly I love each episode but if I had to choose, Episode 1 and episode 3 would be a tie but Episode 2 is rather clever; a mirage, who would have thought of that. Each case had me baffled, as to How and Why. Episode 2 is also rather sad, a young son lying for his father just so to please him. The worst is without a doubt episode 5, because I can't get the How and the Why factors. Episode 9 is the most confusing but saved by Episode 10 which is both funny and poignant. Yukawa is by no means perfect; he always has no idea how some death happened and his trademark answer to Utsumi's question "So you figure out how it was done?" was "I have absolutely no idea". He admits that much!

All these brings about very quotable quotes. "The hypothesis is possible", "the theories is possible" etc and Utsumi saying "It is a detective's intuition" which Yukawa always dismisses as illogical but my favourite quote of all is in Episode 10 Look out for the one were Yukawa was dismantling a bomb (HE COULD DISMANTLE BOMBS!!!), where Utsumi said "I thought we just have to cut a blue or red wire" and Yukawa said "You watched too many cartoons" and Utsumi panicked and said "We should call the police, the military, the Pentagon..." and Yukawa dryly replied "The Pentagon is American". After some 2 hours of solving some impossible problems, Yukawa looked at the final piece of the bomb and said "What the hell is this? Maybe I should have watched cartoons" because it came down to blue or red wire! With 10 seconds to go, Yukawa admitted defeat and asked a panicking Utsumi "So what is your favourite colour?" and Utsumi cried "PINK!" and Yukawa cut a wire. The entire scene was urgent and yet funny. I was thinking "HURRY YUKAWA SENSEI! HURRY!!" and he did cut the wire. Guess which wire he cut? I just love how she said PINK! Very funny. Anyway at the end Yukawa said "Your intuition is indeed a supernatural phenomenon"!

I think the entire success of this series, apart from the stories, the crimes and the characters at the end of the day boils down to 2 reasons; the Japanese writer's ability to create an iconic character and the actor's ability to possess it wholely.

I am not sure if another actor may be able to give the character justice as he did, but I feel Fukuyama Masaharu is perfectly cast. Reading some criticisms that said this was not his best work, maybe I am not the ultimate authority as to what his best work is. But if this isn't, then his best work must be beyond smashingly spectacular because I thought his Yukawa Manabu is smashingly spectacular. This is one annoying character that a less likeable or lesser actor may be nuked by it. But Masha did it so well I can see nobody else in it. Of course I am not familiar with Japanese actors, I only know at most 2 or 3 and Masha is the only one I am aware of at present. What drove me to watch Suspect X was him, what made me want to watch this series is him as Galileo himself. Am I a fan? Can't say I am since a fan is knowledgeable of his or her favourite star's work. I am not even aware he is first and foremost a singer/songwriter so shamefully I must admit I am not a fan in that sense. But I love him so. I must admit his name has not entered my radar for almost half a decade, maybe more and to suddenly see him again is like seeing a familiar well liked face. Japanese actor can be iconic in looks and in their work. I believe actors have longer longevity than singers and their actors are most pretty good. Almost all have this deep barritone of a voice, looks tall even if very slim with that hairstyle that takes hours to mess it up. Masha has the babyface good looks and yet serious enough to be taken as an intellectual. I would believe he is a physicist. Like Bae Youngjun, he gives me an impression he is smart or rather well read. He is also tall and lanky and yet somehow strangely athletic looking enough to look like he could play squash and all. He still looks great for his age (38 at the time of filming perhaps) even if older. He of course looks bigger outside of a series, maybe he specifically lost weight for series. And my god, he can sing! What I noticed about him first and foremost is his voice. Deep deep voice. In the movie review I have said his style of acting as Yukawa is controlled acting. It is not necessarily bad acting. I can tell you what is bad acting and what is controlled acting. Masha's style in here is very much in control. I can find no fault in his performance. Even if Yukawa Manabu is such a boring smart high and mighty sort of character which can be arrogant as well, somehow Masha made him likeable, undeniably attractive and very very desirable. I like smart men and Yukawa is a smart man and plus point is Masha is a very handsome man and so all put together is a thoroughly killer combination. And guess what? He can act. Subtlety is something I appreciate the most, like how he delivered the lines to Shibasaki Kou's Utsumi in Episode 10 "I am just like him (Kijima)" in a sort of sad way or when he first met Utsumi he said "I do not know this face" in an arrogant way or the way Utsumi teased him about introducing girls to him and he said dryly "I hope she is someone who knows Theory of relativity..." and Utsumi looked at him and knew she has zero chance with him and he looked at her and for that minute did consider her offer of introducing girls to him and perhaps even considered her. That fleeting moment was well done and when well done adds to the entire atmosphere of this series. If you are one of those who feels this is not his best, perhaps justifiably so. But if you feel he was terrible in here, I urge you to rewatch the entire series. Even rewatch the movie or even Episode 0. Again can't say this was his best but I can safely say give me another 10 seasons of Yukawa Manabu and I won't complain one bit.

Shibasaki Kou is a relevation. In the movie review, I described why I like her so. In here I will describe why I love her so. For one, she has banished the image of apron wearing Japanese women forever out of my head. Her Utsumi can't even cook! She doesn't speak with a breathy whisper that seems like forced modesty, doesn't sit nor walk like those usual Stepford Wives' Japanese version and her hair does get messy. She has expressions, speaks louds, speaks fast, walk fast, gets angry, has emotions, and doesn't breath out loud when panicking. Everything that is opposite of a typical performance by a Japanese actress. And she is funny! She delivers her lines with such cuteness and yet sometimes with such seriousness. An amazing performance by an amazing actress, she totally inhabit the role of Utsumi and I would hate to see some breathy sounding actress replacing her as Utsumi. I also love her chemistry with Masha and the fact that they formed a band together, they must have got along really well in real life. What makes Galileo such a great series to watch is in part thanks to Shibasaki Kou. In Episode 0 without her it seems a bit bland although Masha is still a bonus and motivation for me. By the way in Suspect X I mentioned she is always in big meetings with loads of officers. In retrospect, it means Utsumi was promoted to HQ except at HQ she is being told to make coffee! Such disrespect!

Kitamura Kazuki as Kusanagi walks in like some superstar, followed closely by a bunch of assistants. In fact his Kusanagi reminds me of a pop star. Handsome, capable, popular except Kusanagi knows it ws Yukawa who helps him solve the cases and gives him the promotion to HQ!

Watanabe Ikkei is funny as Kuribayashi, the perpetual lab assistant. You will see him in Episode 0, as well as the flashback when Yukawa was a university graduate student which means he has been at Teito University forever! He is always saying "Yukawa Sensei, do not agree to assist the police anymore" for good reasons. For one Yukawa has papers to mark, lectures to attend to, experiments to conduct, researches to finish, etc. Yukawa is a busy man and often we see Yukawa dozing off. So Kuribayashi has every reason to urge Yukawa to stay out! Anyway Watanabe Ikkei is really funny and is obviously the comic relief.

Shinagawa Hiroshi as Yuge is useless as a detective (at least Utsumi tries to investigate, he simply concludes without much investigation) but he is one funny actor when it comes to autopsy scenes. Always the first to throw up. Episode 1 was really funny, seeing Shinagawa Hiroshi and Shibasaki Kou expressions when watching an autopsy, trying hard not to vomit. Realistic also.

Maya Miki as Jonouchi the coroner is pretty and always eating. She is super cool when it comes to autopsies and never flinched. Seems to take things too lightly as well and one unconvincing performance when an acquaitance of hers was brutally murdered but she seems non-plussed. Apart from that, I like her performance.

Everybody else has minor roles but does require him or her to do something.

Now every episode the victims or villains or victims' families arefamous guest stars but I can only spot a few. Episode 1 I have seen the actor in a food series many years before. He looks much older now. Episode 3, the victim's wife is the same actress in Departures whom I hated. Surprisingly in here she doesn't speak with a breathy voice nor smile when she is speaking. Maybe different movie different style of acting. The young girl in Episode 5 looks like the breathy girl from L (Death Note spin off)? Not sure since they all look alike. My sis recognised some from other episodes. However I suspect Episode 10's Kijima must be a really famous veteran actor because if not why would the camera slowly pan to his face? The rest frankly I do not know but I feel the guest stars definitely contributed to the enjoyment of this series. In other words, a job well done.

The almost last bit I must talk about is the other reason why I enjoyed this series. The subtitles were simply amazing. I watched the fansub version and I must insist that if you want to download any hard subbed version, you must get the SARS fansub version, the link is at the end of this entire review. The video quality is amazing but the subtitles, awesomely great. Not the Form 5 standard but the graduate universty student standard. The effort can be seen and so lovingly done. But you must read fast because you know for every 2 chinese words, Japanese uses 4 words to describe the same thing and some subs can be pretty long, like 4 lines! But if you have seen All About Eve's subs, I am sure you can handle it. Thanks to All About Eve's Standard 3 subbing (the original one, not the later versions!) I could now not only read fast, I could rearrange words and sentences to make sense into it. Of course with this SARS fansub you don't need to. All perfectly structured, well translated. I am not sure the translation was from the Chinese translation or really from Japanese dialogue but it makes sense, except for one part where Yuge said to Kijima's secretary that she is his beautiful WIFE when it should be SECRETARY. Other than that, no complains and a joy to watch thanks to the subbing. I am sure there must be one or two off sentences but when you have lived almost a lifetime of standard 3 subbing, to watch something like what you see in Galileo, it is like Hallelujah!!

And for the last bit would be both my complain and my compliment that is the background soundtrack. The good is sometimes it is good, the bad is sometimes the music sounds like some bad hotel lobby soundtrack. I am sure much better effort can be put into the whole soundtrack thing since music plays a big role in the style department. A good soundtrack with some stylishly filmed scene can add to the entire stylish feel of the series. How can I put it plainly? Just why did they use the bad hotel lobby soundtrack?

Verdict
Problem with Japanese series is they end a series much too early and yet that is the best; they said what they wanted to say in 10 episodes or so. I believe this series can do another 10 more episodes, but maybe cut out that Yukawa-must-write-his-formula-somewhere scene. Love this series, which reignited my love for Japanese dramas and further brought back fond memories why I love Fukuyama Masaharu. And now I also get to see new talents or undiscovered ones, at least to, such as Shibasaki Kou. Great themesong too! If you love crime series, or Japanese dramas with a dash of comedy or even just memorable characters and simply great performances or for Fukuyama Masaharu alone or just nothing better to do or loves House MD, THIS is the series to watch. It's just 10 episodes. I am sure you invested more time into crap like Forensic Heroes and even worse, Numbers and CSIs. By the way I am still obsessed with this series. I need a cure!


Add On Review
Title
Galileo: Episode Zero

Plot
The special is set 3 years prior to the drama series, with the story being related to a murder case that was partly referenced in the original show. Detective Kusanagi is looking to solve a murder mystery, and he gets back in touch with his former badminton teammate, the brilliant professor Yukawa Manabu who was the assistant professor.

The mystery
A useless son seemingly was pierced through the heart by a (suspected) knife and then burnt to death by fireworks set off in his own house when no one was inside the house nor did anyone escaped!

Comments
I believe this is a poorer version of the entire Galileo series. It starts 3 years before Utsumi comes into the picture and Yukawa was just an assistant professor. Come to think of it, 3 years later he is the associate professor which only means he has a meteoric rise. I am not sure when Suspect X takes place though. Anyway this special almost 2 hours episode presents again the same formula except you will get to see a young (as in 12 years before) Yukawa (even weirder!), young Kusanagi (regular college guy), younger Kuribayashi and an introduction to some police staff we see in the regular episodes, except for Utsumi of course. First of, the story arc is less funnier than the series but funnier than the movie. In this special episode you will get to see Ishigami (or rather his back) introduced which is a continuation to the movie itself. I must say, nice continuation sequence eventhough again I am not sure when does Suspect X starts. The story is not as interesting as the series but the How factor is still pretty clever even if the Why factor is to me unbelievable. Moreover I find it ludicrous that Kuribayashi was at the beach begging girls in bikinis to spend time with Yukawa who manages himself pretty well by playing beach volleyball with Kusanagi. All those focus on the bikini wearing girls are embarassing to watch and definitely for ratings but why would this need that? The regular series itself has high ratings from what I read. To have the camera pointing at the jiggling breasts and all just seems to cheapen this special episode. Whilst I like watching how Kusanagi sought out Yukawa's help, their younger days exactly how Yukawa helped Kusanagi is also plausible, but to hear Kusanagi was once a murder suspect is over the top. Why? Why would the useless detectives suspect Kusanagi, a mere pizza delivery boy of killing a tenant where he is delivering pizza to? What is the WHY factor? This is similar to the criticism I had with Suspect X; why jump to conclusion which is something Yukawa always reprimanded Utsumi of? Except Utsumi jumped to a good person type of conclusion. The police in here seems inept and dumb. The younger Yukawa may be weird and smart, it also shows he did all the experiment with how you can make someone jump off the building without touching them was in the end pointless as the lady killed herself. However it shows not all Yukawa's hypothesis is correct even if doable after several tries. I like this aspect of Yukawa. I was hoping there is some explanation as to how Yukawa got his famous palm in face pose started but alas, he seems to have always had it! Anyway, the more I watch this episode, which isn't bad by itself, the more I miss Utsumi's presence which what makes the series such a great watch. Of course Masha is a great reason to watch but I don't think Episode 0 adds anything new to the whole series and the meeting between Kusanagi and Yukawa in their younger days were sloppily written. A better more in depth writing would be most fair to the fans who probably waited for this special for a long time. I am not sure whether I can say the younger actors were well cast or not but I must say the 2 actors definitely got the mannerisms of the older actors perfectly even if Miura Haruma as the young Yukawa didn't really look like Masha one bit. Pretty looking yes, weird looking too but none of Masha's baby face looks. He looks seriously too serious. Sano Kazuma as young Kusanagi was ok. Like I said, the mannerisms were perfect, looks wise not so. It is also funny to see Watanabe Ikkei as Kuribayashi again, this time younger and then a much younger Kuribayashi and his changing interaction with Yukawa. Many years before, he was arrogantly giving advice to Yukawa. Then as the assistant to the new assistant professor, he was eager to please. In the series after some years working together, there is a sense of respect and closeness between the 2, more so since Yukawa even cooks for Kuribayashi! There is also an introduction to a young graduate student of Yukawa, a pretty girl whose name I didn't catch who was inspired to be a police office after seeing how Yukawa applied his knowledge to solve crimes. The girl is ok; I find her pretty and pretty annoying. But again I am pleased to see a non-Japanese type of acting by a Japanese actress. Maybe I have not been watching Japanese series for far too long that their method of acting has changed without me realising it. Overall the How is pretty clever even if far fetched, the Why a terrible ending and the performances again well done. But Yukawa without Utsumi is like your favourite sandwich without the bread. It just doesn't seem right. My least favourite of all the Galileo episodes (inclusive of the movie) but still an entertaining watch for fans of Galileo. Just don't watch this first if you haven't seen Galileo. Start with the movie and then move to the series and then last but not least, move to this special only for completion sake.

Interesting Stuff
Funny stuff
It is a Malaysian joke when you have a seemingly impossible job to to and you lament that it is something that will kill you you say "Mati Kudasai!". I swear it I will never say that again because there is such a Japanese word except it as "Mate Kudasai!!" which means "Hold on a minute". I suppose same but not quite as Choto-mate. Anyway I was quite shocked to hear it is a real word! No more mati-kudasai for me!

Important stuff
Can someone, anyone, everyone tell me what Yukawa writes in his equation? What?!

And most interesting one...

Whilst searching the net I stumbled across a website which I forgot to bookmark which said that the famous Yukawa Sensei's pose in this series (one that is very evidently missing in Suspect X the movie) where he figured out some equation and poses with his left hand on his face, 2 eyes peeking through 3 fingers wide apart and the other two tucked in, like exactly the one below...



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I never wondered about the significance of it. I just thought it looks stylish, something like Ultraman crosses his chest or something. But that website which again I forgot to bookmark (baka!!) said it is actually the gesture or handsign for Fleming's left hand rule! WHAT?

Fleming's left hand rule (for electric motors) shows the direction of the thrust on a conductor carrying a current in a magnetic field. The left hand is held with the thumb, index finger and middle finger mutually at right angles. It can be recalled by remembering that "motors drive on the left, in Britain anyway."

Like this...


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The left hand is for motors. There is a right hand version, for generators. Now why Yukawa sensei favours motors over generators?

Serious? YES INDEED! Now it made sense! And for this to be Yukawa sensei's signature pose, wow! And guess what? I read the entire explanation and I still don't get it! Good to know the writer added this little tidbit. I wonder the writer or the screenwriter? Or am I reading too much into a stylish pose?

Anyone read the novels before? Any signiicant departure in the series and in the books other than the character Utsumi whom I know wasn't in the books before (and a brilliant change by the way)?


The Making Of ...
Not sure if fanmade or real TMO but one of the videos, he actually wrote the whole formula, twice! Interesting stuff. Not sure if everyone can access, but just in case it is slow or you can't access, try downloading, installing and connecting to the Hotspot Shield before opening the video/links. Video will open full size in new browser window.

Part 1
No idea what is said in this video but since it has Chinese subtitles, hopefully someone kind enough could just summarize using Post A Comment.

http://mv.baidu.com/export/flashplayer.swf?vid=ff7f91eebde2e7864525adf5

Part 2
http://mv.baidu.com/export/flashplayer.swf?vid=438ade5fe1c96139a33cfa0a

Part 3
http://mv.baidu.com/export/flashplayer.swf?vid=aeaead2adac49234bf9a4209

Part 4
http://mv.baidu.com/export/flashplayer.swf?vid=eb9e5ba0bce87a4d3f0ff309

Part 5
http://mv.baidu.com/export/flashplayer.swf?vid=ab1523115f05f73c16b14e08

Themesong
Written by Fukuyama Masaharu himself and sung by Shibasaki Kou herself accompanied by Masaharu on guitar. The song is KISS Shite by KOH+ (new band comprising of these 2). Shibasaki Kou looks so different and Masha, well he kinda overworked the whole guitar thing BUT again, great catchy song.

Official MV


Captured from Series
Love the whole spark writing thing. Shown at the end of each episode.



Sung by the man himself


Fan made trailers
Haven't watched these with sound on but looks pretty good. Trailers from the series made by fans. Such dedicated fans! All the more better because only dedicated fans would make such golden stuff, without which we shall be much poorer!





Note : The following I notice have some scenes from Episode 0, such as the volleyball scene.


Fuji TV 2007 Autumn Drama Promotion Game Show
These are at youku.com. If you can't access (slow connection, etc) and from Malaysia, check out this link to know how to access. The following are one event where Galileo theme played some serious competetive games. No subtitles but easy to follow. For fans of Fukuyama Masaharu, do check out link no. 4 where he displayed his archery skills. He won by points of coolness, in my opinion although his point isn't bad at all.

1. http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XMTMwNTc5MjQ=.html
2. http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XMTMwNTI3OTY=.html
3. http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XMTMwNTMyODA=.html
4. http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XMTMzMDIxMDQ=.html
5. http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XMTMwNjAzOTY=.html

It is worth watching the whole event just to see how reserved and yet lively they'll are. However for case in point as in the archery, see video below. Remember to connect to Hotspot Shield first.


Watch 071001 waratte iitomo autumn SP - achery in Entertainment  |  View More Free Videos Online at Veoh.com

Awards
13th Asian Television Awards: Best Drama Series
55th Television Drama Academy Awards: Best Drama
55th Television Drama Academy Awards: Best Actor - Fukuyama Masaharu
55th Television Drama Academy Awards: Best Supporting Actress - Shibasaki Kou
55th Television Drama Academy Awards: Best Script - Fukuda Yasushi
55th Television Drama Academy Awards: Best Director
55th Television Drama Academy Awards: Best Theme Song

Follow Up
The movie, Suspect X. Read my glowing (almost radioactive) review here.

Download series
Get the great subbed (hard subbed!) copy HERE. Look for Galileo. You will also find Episode 0 and the movie in the same line.



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14 comments:

  1. I must say the bomb wire dialogue in the final episode is gold! Had me laughing silly, especially Yukawa remark about watching more television... and Utsumi favorite color.

    Yukawa can get emotionally involved too, especially when it resonates his past experience (though he didn't express much), especially when it comes to children and difficult family upbringing (young parents). He himself doesn't have a happy childhood because his parents got married and had him when they're still in university.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wahhh Sehseh so fast you comment!!

    Yes he was emotionally (fleetingly) involved in some cases. I like the scene where he developed a rash after looking into the child's eyes in Episode 2! Talk about illogical!

    Interestingly, and something I did not write in my review is how little we see of their personal lives. Not even the house, family etc. A bit too cold but I am used to this by watching years of Law & Order. Whatever needs to be said will and was said and to me that is enough. Sometimes TVB series is getting wayyyyy too personal for my taste.

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  3. You're not kidding about the long review. It is long!

    First, I'm happy you enjoy Galileo. Both Suspect X and Galileo has its own strength and I'm glad the producer decided to take a different approach about it rather than do a carbon-copy of the TV Series. As for your question, no, there are no scribbling notes in Suspect X. The mood doesn't allow it. This is also the reason why the producer decided to spend 20 mins focusing on Ishigami in Suspect X rather than Yukawa, since it's assumed everyone is acquainted with Yukawa.

    Galileo is the drama that put Fukuyama Masaharu into my brain, and he's been there ever since. I think I know this guy from somewhere, from those dramas back then. And Yukawa-sensei IMO, is his best character, at least, he managed to make the role his. Personally, I don't think he's the best actor in Japan, but with Yukawa, he managed to surprise me about his acting ability. Because watching Yukawa made me forgot about watching Fukuyama Masaharu. And that, is a testament to a job well-done. Apparently, he requested for a read-through with the director and scriptwriter before filming started, to understand and to see how to approach this character better. Yes, he even loose the weight for Yukawa, just because the character is suppose to be athletic.

    Reading your review made me realised Galileo is probably one of the series that seems to objectified male, yet, treat their women with respect (sans Galileo Zero). Both Utsumi and the coroner were seen in their work attire most of the time. There are no over-done kawaii makeup except with a special guest in ep7, but she's supposed to be a drop-dead gorgeous Stepford Wife with a secret agenda, so it works for her. Another interesting note is how they made Utsumi as the driver, because Yukawa can't drive. But when it comes to the male... you have all these fan-service moments. Not that I can blame them. It's Masha's first drama after four years and the camera treat him as a superstar.

    I'm also happy Galileo treat their audience smartly. This is what's missing from the current J-Drama that was geared towards manga/idol fans. The experiments looked like it can be done and the proof is there for everyone to see. I admit the equations can get a little tiring, but if you pace yourself to one episode a week following the Japanese air date, then, maybe it wasn't that bad. The audience is expecting something familiar and they got it. As for the equation, I recognised the formula on pressure in ep3 and I think in ep1, it was a mathematical angle theorem. (can't remember).

    My favourite is episode 7, since it shows a different Yukawa. This is the Yukawa that took the initiative, and it's sweet to see him bonding with his male friends. This episode also made me realised why Yukawa did not turn into Ishigami. He got friends, he has people around him that appreciate him even though he can difficult some times. Another favourite of mine is episode 9, throughout this episode the audience can sense there are two mysteries: 1. The Mask and 2. The Relationship. Kijima is not a famous actor, but he's a super-famous newscaster.

    Alas, I think episode 10 is a disappointment. The whole thing suddenly goes into a fantasy world. It' illogical, just because there are no proper study on the material they found. Currently, Super-Nak is a myth. Thankfully, you have a funny banter between Yukawa and Utsumi to save the day. A little bit like episode 6, where Yukawa reason: This has nothing to do with physics. Which is a bit weird if you compared to the rest of the episodes.

    There, I hope it can fit into the entire comment box in blogspot.

    PS: The man is six-foot tall.

    ReplyDelete
  4. ct, thanks for your insightful comment. Always a treat to read such wonderful discussion. I think we both notice the same thing about the beautiful murderous wife. That actress is very pretty though and seems to be the only one who is actually filled with make up and perfectly permed hair. I know why Episode 10 may be a disappointment to some and since I know zero about physics, naturally I didn't even know SuperNAK is real or myth. But like you liked the relationship between Yukawa and his new found friends in Ep 7, what ep 10 appealed to me was of course the closeness between Yukawa and Utsumi. Truth be told, the whole SuperNak and nuclear bomb thing is just for dramatic value.

    I am surprised the equation used are actually part real? You're familiar with the subject matter? No one seems to comment on that so I wouldn't know. But you're right; if I pace myself I wouldn't get bored with the whole writing thing but truthfully how can anyone pace themselves when they have access to all episodes and a desire to watch them all? After a while I laughed at the writing scenes but with your information I will now look into the equations with newfound respect. I always thought there must be a connection between that and the HOW factor.

    I never really noticed the fact that Yukawa can't drive or even bothered with the fact that Utsumi is the one always driving. Once again such comments really opened my eyes and I promise myself I shall revisit Galileo soon enough to look at the series with a newfound view. In fact I am going to rewatch Suspect X in light of the series, just to see what I may have overlooked.

    Frankly I really don't believe the man is 6 foot tall. 5 foot 10 maybe. You know stars always hike up the numbers. But even for a 5 foot 10 he is tall for an Asian. As for losing weight to look more athletic, I find that hard to believe since in his concerts he looks more well built. He is still too slim to be that athletic.

    By the way Kijima is a famous newscaster? I thought he acted very very well and I thought he must be some veteran actor. I wonder is there an info site in English that explains who the guest stars are and why they join the series? Like why a newscaster in that role? That is indeed intriguing.

    And yes your comments did fit into one post. There is no word limit by the way. Thanks again for your insightful comments. I wonder will there be a 2nd season? Looks unlikely but a wishful thinking.

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  5. The gag reel: http://www.56.com/u34/v_MzExOTQ3MDM.html

    Or in Japanese term, the NG video aka, No Good. Unfortunately, the one in youtube has been taken out.

    My mistake, the equation in ep3 is a Force equation, not Pressure. Pressure equation appeared in ep7 (at least from what I can detect, but I can't remember). While the angle calculation that appeared in ep1, I got it from the Number-inspired montage, not from the equation on the street. Yes, it does relate to the How, though I have no idea how the equation in ep6 actually relate to it.

    I think it was Masha's decision to slim down. Honestly, I don't mind, since he does not look anorexic or super-skinny (though there was nothing wrong with his real figure). He's like a lean runner, where he's all muscle without an ounce of fat. This is where I appreciate the close-up to his biceps and the slow-mo camera on his movement. It does point out how athletic he can be. And they made a point to show his involvement in sports is due to his practical physics theory, not due to any vanity reason. Which fit his personality.

    Alas, there are no explanation on why a guest appeared in selected episodes. I guess there's a lot of reason:- it allows them to become a villain where they normally don't, it boost their profile by appearing in a high-rating drama and probably as a promotion for their other projects. I agreed Kijima is really good, they need someone who can put up with Masha's superstar status, why not getting a superstar newscaster. And from someone who's main job is reading news and another who's first job writing songs, both of them manage to hold their fort. They keep audience guessing about their past relationship. Apparently Kijima acted before, once, thirty years ago. LOL, that's great.

    I'm suspecting fujitv is counting the days on when Masha will become available. The book is still being written (where one amusing scene has Utsumi, yes, Utsumi finally appeared in the latest book, listening to Fukuyama Masaharu). Both the drama and the movie have not only become popular, but both received a critical attention. There's no way fujitv will let them go that easily. Of course, after Suspect X, I don't think they can keep Yukawa as he was in Galileo. He seems to be a bit shaken by that experience. I wonder where will he go from here.

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  6. ct,

    "He seems to be a bit shaken by that experience."

    I was a bit confused with this comment until I realised you meant Yukawa the character! I agree. BUT he has seen worse. I suppose he moves on. Or they can go for a story before the Ishigami incident. There is no specific timeline.

    If Utsumi's character was never in the books, who did Galileo investigate with? Kusanagi?

    By the way do you mean the writer wrote Utsumi listening to Fukuyama Masaharu himself?

    Thanks for the NG link. Will check it out and yes curse the copyrighters! I know there's a CM with Masha as Yukawa but alas can't find it!!

    By the way I read the actress Kou was temperamental on the set. Is it true? It is hard to find news in English especially gossip!

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  7. ALAS! The video link simply refused to load. Tried nabbing it but came out to zero content! Maybe it is not available in my country. Can't even find a fansite that nabbed it and make it available for download! Sigh....

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  8. Perhaps tudou link will be better: http://www.tudou.com/programs/view/NTkaP8VKT3w/. I saw the video in veoh, but since veoh is not available here, that's why I did not link it to you.

    Yes, originally it was Kusanagi-Yukawa combo. But when they're doing the adaptation, the producer requested for a female character. So Higashino-san created Utsumi. That's why if you notice in Suspect X, both Utsumi and Kusanagi actually have similar role. Utsumi appeared in the latest story, where Higashino-san wrote her listening to Fukuyama Masaharu. heh.

    I heard the same rumour as you did, and another rumour that the formation of koh+ is a way to tame her. But I can't trace it to the original Japanese source, only the Chinese source. And you know what they say about the Chinese source, don't believe everything you read in there.

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  9. Sammy28.9.09

    My favorite drama of the year. I still can't believe that it didn't win the prizes when it was compete with "Yukan Club." I lost a little fate in humanity.

    They're making a TVB version. Kind of depress me a little bit. They going to focus too much on romance and make up some crappy cases.

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  10. Sammy, What is Yukan Club? I thought for the awards that matter Galileo did win the Jap's version of Emmys and also that Asia TV thing?

    And are you serious about the TVB version? Who can be Fuku-Chan? No one! I already dislike that version. Next version, Korean!

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  11. Sammy28.9.09

    I believe there was some other award that Yukan club won over Galileo. I think it's something like the MTV award (people choice and everything). Yukan club staring three of the hottest Jonny's boys so it won the award.

    You want to know the cast of TVB's Galileo?? Here it goes



    Yukawa Manabu: Raymond Lam
    Utsumi Kaoru: Tavia Yeung
    Kusanagi Shunpei(if the other two haven't give you a heart attack this one will) :

    Kenneth Ma.

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  12. The Nikan Sports Award which is the award where the fangirls rule. They sent their vote to get their idol to win everything. *shrug*

    Currently, you have a good impression on Japanese Dramas, so, I don't recommend you watching it. It will destroy every single credibility you have on them. Of course, the fangirls will defend them to hell. So don't go there.

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  13. Sammy if you're reading this, referring to your comment in here, in retrospect, you're so right!

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  14. Anonymous7.9.10

    Nice review of one of my favourite shows! Just FIY, Masha is 6''1 - 181cm tall. Look how tall he is in the game show <3

    ReplyDelete

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