Gokusen / Season 1 : 4 of 5
I've finished watching another classic Japanese drama, the incredibly popular Gokusen (gangster teacher) that lots of drama fans call their favorite! I first heard about this show in a YesJapan video, and when I mentioned it to my pal Barron, he got the show and shared it with me. The plot is really simple - Yamaguchi Kumiko is the heir to a notorious yakuza (Japanese mafia) family, but decides to become a school teacher instead. Of course, she's assigned to Class 3-D, full of the most trouble-making delinquents at the school! Kumiko is a sweet, geeky girl with glasses, but when her students need her, the glasses come off and she kicks butt - one of the big jokes is that she starts speaking in "yakuza mode", and everyone around her is shocked at her language! Each episode is full of comedy and plenty of heart-warming moments, and the cast has so many great characters. The 3-D students are cool and likeable in their own way, and the other teachers are great, too (this was the first time I actually knew some of the actors, including 1st generation Morning Musume member Nakazawa Yuko). Even though this series has 12 episodes (one more than usual), I still felt like it ended too soon - I could have easily watched more! This show was so popular in Japan that it inspired a second season (which I will watch soon!), a manga, and even an anime (which I will rent!). I'm totally hooked on Japanese drama!