Latimer: Today myself and Ridley journeyed to Asakusa. A very nice part of Tokyo that contains the jaw-dropping Asakusa-jinja. The main gateway to the temple contains a massive red lantern at its centre. This is often used as a meeting place in shoujo manga for the main boy and girl’s date. (Ridley: I love how this looks like it’s about to be a post about the temple, which perhaps more people would be interested in than our crazy ramblings but…it’s not going to be! So…go see the temple, it’s lovely…now on to our madness..)
The temple site was packed with tourists and also school tours (lots of middle and elementary school kids… we assumed).
As me and Ridley stood poised on the great Temple’s porch (R: We sound impressive, it was more like we lulled over the banister as we were starting to flag against the hot sun. There was a nice breeze on the high porch so we didn’t want to move…) We began to muse over what the school kids ‘stories’ might be. We’ve been doing this a lot on our trip. We will often wonder, what is the life story of any number of random individuals; the gaijin (foreigner) in the suit alone on the train; the old Japanese couple walking hand in hand through the park… and now, the school kids.
I should backtrack and explain that Asian dramas are loved by both myself and Ridley, it doesn’t matter if it’s Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese. We’ve watched them all. (R: Great stories, well woven but really sometimes the endings are poorly wrapped up…we like to think we could end some of them better!) They tend to follow a similar pattern and so, we started to think about our own drama, and we began randomly picking out the school kids below as our characters…
We focused on one group of three girls and four boys.
One girl wore a backpack with the American flag as the pattern; she became ‘Stars and Stripes’.
The one with all the power (when she asked for a picture, all the boys leapt to attention) became, ‘The Main Girl’ and Stars and Stripes, we decided would be her best friend. They were all in Middle School together.
Of the four boys, one stood out; he had a grey backpack (Grey), all the other boys flocked around him, we decided he was the boy that loved The Girl, her best boy-friend. The good guy.
Then we noticed another, separate group of boys. There was one that stood out, a young man in a hat (a sort of black 1930’s hat). Very dapper. He was going to be the bad boy. We named him Hat. Ridley watched him intently; “He’ll be the leader of the gang, the one that will lead the fight out of the subway” (to those that don’t follow Asian dramas, there always seems to be fighting involved and it usually involves the main men, and more often than not, the bad guy is in some form of a gang. I don’t know where this factors into Asian society, it just seems to be a staple in drama-land).
So, we decided that Hat and The Girl had had a ‘chance meeting’ during their school trip to the temple. But they’d also been having ‘chance meetings’ their whole lives (they don’t realise it, but they met first in preschool, when they fought over a red crayon. Since this time, The Girl has referred to this arrogant boy as Aka-baka (red-idiot)).
The title of our drama, then became ‘Chansu Miitingutsu’ (the Japanese pronouncation of Chance Meetings). This is my attempt at the katakana of the title:
As the school kids started to leave, we fast-forwarded a few years; they were now in High School. Of the Middle school group, only The Girl and her friends, Grey and Stars and Stripes, went to the same school. But…. who ends up in her class? Just Hat (Aka-baka).
— Another Chansu Miitingutsu!
(Ridley: It’s the only way really, how else are they meant to get together? But Grey will put up a good fight, as he will be able to have The Girl’s best friend, Stars and Stripes, fighting in his corner! Those two probably ended up in the same class, as is the way of things. Oh yeah, we’re writing this, so…they did! And I bet Stars and Stripes likes Grey…oh the plot thickens!)
The school kids soon left the Temple, led off by their guides and sensei. However, for us, the notion of our drama continued throughout the day. As we passed a pachinko arcade (Ridley: Gambling parlours with tiny, metal balls- the noise from them is horrific!), we saw a girl dressed in a ridiculous costume outside, pleading for people to come in (handing out flyers, in a sky blue robe wearing a curly pink wig). Ridley nodded, “That’s the job The Girl gets in High School”.
“And Hat frequents the pachinko dens,” I added.
— Chansu Miitingutsu!
By the end of the day we’d ended up in Ginza, in a Vampire Café (more on that later! Very random I know) being served by a surly young man dressed as a Goth (I’m not sure I’d say vampire, maybe a Goth gone mental). We rounded off our drama for the day by deciding that Hat worked as a vampire in the vampire café.
As we sit, winding down in our hotel room, writing this, we’ve worked out the following:
Yamapi will play Hat
Ikuta Toma will play Grey
This will also fulfil our dream of having these two men work together in a drama!
Inoue Mao will play The Girl
Horikita Maki will play Stars and Stripes
Our drama theme song will be PonPonPon by Kyary Pamyu Pamyu (because it’s a mental music video, and we are sure that that girl is following us all over Tokyo at the moment… she is EVERYWHERE!). (Ridley: PonPon woman has given me a headache. This song has been caught in my head all day! It’s quite catchy…)
‘People watching’ is a major source of all drama goodness! Stay tuned for our release date, once everyone signs on, we’ll let you know! (Ridley: We expect these really well known Asian actors to work for free by the by, so it may take some time and lots of persuading before our drama can be made! haha…)