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Hana Yori Dango

Hana Yori Dango

by Rinoa on January 28, 2007 · 193 comments · AddThis

Hana Yori Dango
Promotional image for Hana Yori Dango

Hana Yori Dango‘ started airing from October 21, 2005 till December 16, 2005 on TBS network. A total of 9 episodes have been aired. Each episode spans to around 46 minutes. On 2006 it was released in four DVDs. A DVD collection has been released, titled ‘Hana yori Dango DVD Box‘ where a photobook is also included. This series is based on the popular manga of Kamio Yoko.

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Synopsis

The dorama focuses on Makino Tsukushi’s life and how she has to deal with countless problems, especially at her school. Her problems started when she decided to attend Eitoku Gakuen, an exclusive school where the rich and celebrities attend. The students are all from a high class level and make it a point to flaunt their riches, even at school at various levels. Students are driven to school with limousines, hummers and sports cars. They also make sure to wear the most elevated brands to display how rich they are. It’s quite impressive to see how ridiculously rich some of the students are and how they go to extents to display it.

To make matters even worse, there is a group of four students called ‘Flower Four’ or most commonly ‘F4′, who actually control the whole school because their parents give generous donations to Eitoku. F4 are the richest students, they do whatever they want and entertain themselves by ‘eliminating’ whoever comes in their way from Eitoku with a ‘red notice’. The student who gets a red notice ends up bullied and ostracized until they leave the school. Their system resembles the middle age political system where any sign of rebellion was stunted.

Since Makino is a ‘commoner’ and certainly cannot afford these luxuries, she feels excluded and tries not to stand out and attract attention. Nonetheless she still really hates how the F4 flaunt their power and does not willingly attend to these activities. Yet, she passively accepts it because she knows how proud her family are of her school. However this all changes when she crosses the path of F4 and clashes with their leader, Domyouji Tsukasa. Makino ends up getting a red notice, which leads the whole school to torment her but she refuses to leave Eitoku. A member from F4, Hanazawa Rui secretly helps her during this difficult time which leads to Makino falling for him.

Domyouji is used to being in control and when Makino refuses to bend at his will he is baffled and enraged. Things start changing when Makino punches him, which reminds him of the only person who wasn’t intimidated by him; his sister. Surprisingly he starts falling in love with Makino, but he isn’t very good at displaying his feelings so he ends up confusing her by his bursts of jealousy and his strange displays of affection. Without wanting to Makino’s life is turned upside down, getting unwanted attention and rivals, while she unsuccessfully tries living a normal life.

One of Tsukasa's ways of settling the score
Tsukasa's way of settling the score
Tsukasa confessing again
Tsukasa confessing again

Makino is thrown in a love triangle, trying to decide who she likes. However, Makino slowly starts trusting Domyouji and accepting him as he is. Most of the episodes see them facing rivals, misunderstandings and unbelieveable obstacles. However Makino also finds a lot of allies, who are determined on making the two of them get together, no matter what!

 

The Characters

Inoue Mao as Makino TsukushiInoue Mao as Makino Tsukushi
Makino Tsukushi is the protagonist of this dorama. She is a typical high school student from a middle class family. When she is accepted to the distinguished high school Eitoku Gakuren, she is horrified to see that the students attend school to flaunt their status and is disgusted at F4’s attitude.
However she sacrifices her happiness and attends, because her family are thrilled at the idea that she attends such a prestigious school. Yet this is only the start of her troubles. When her friend Sanjou Sakurako ends up spilling juice over Domyouji, Makino decides to stand up for her which leads to her getting a red notice.
Makino’s strong character is clearly portrayed when she’s being bullied by the whole school. She hates being pushed around and she retaliates and confronts Domyouji, something that would lead to him falling for her. Her stubborn attitude rivals to the one of Domyogi leading them to clash at every single opportunity.
It is also interesting to note that this was Inoue Mao’s first major act in a dorama, where she acted brilliantly and won an award as best actress in the ‘47th Television Drama Academy Awards’.

 
Matsumoto Jun as Domyouji TsukasaMatsumoto Jun as Domyouji Tsukasa
Domyouji Tsukasa is the leader of F4 and the heir to the international Domyougi Financial group. He’s a spoilt, arrogant and bull-headed person, who hates losing. Thus it’s quite common to see him beating people up when he’s pissed off. Also he seems to mix words quite a lot, leading to confusing and funny moments.
He falls for Makino, the only girl who doesn’t care about his money, fame or power. He awkwardly tries extremely hard to get Makino’s affections in the wrong ways. He threatens to kill her if she doesn’t do what he wants, claims that she loves him and buys expensive gifts to her family which lead to a very frustrated Makino. Jun Matsumoto is part of popular J-pop band ARASHI. He won an award as best supporting actor in the ‘47th Television Drama Academy Awards’.

 

Oguri Shun as Hanazawa RuiOguri Shun as Hanazawa Rui
Hanazawa Rui is the most mysterious and introverted member of F4. He frequently spends his time in the fire escape staircase reading or sleeping. Despite that he’s a member of F4, he doesn’t seem to enjoy their activities and he’s intrigued when Makino stands up for them to the point that he starts helping her.
Makino falls for Rui but quickly realizes that he has hidden feelings for his childhood friend, Shizuka and she urges him to follow her and quit holding back his feelings. Makino helped Rui express himself more and he slowly ends up falling for her too!
Shun is the former boyfriend of J-Pop idol Yaguchi Mari. He got the role as Rui because Jun told the producers that if they didn’t give Shun the role, he wouldn’t act as Domyouji. In real life, Jun and Shun are good friends, all the way from the Gokusen days.

 

Matsuda Shota as Nishikado SojiroMatsuda Shota as Nishikado Sojiro
Nishikado Sojiro is the son of the head of a prestigious tea ceremony school. His elegant appearance and manners are quite deceiving though. He’s a typical rich playboy, who is always playing around with different girls and avoids commitment. In the end he never seems to consider any girl seriously.
He’s often seen partying with Mimasaka Akira, with whom he gets along quite well, probably because of their mutual love for women. His attitude is quite laid-back, charismatic and full of confidence, however he tends to lose his temper if things do not go his way. Despite the fact he’s a social person, he’s quite cold and detached from anyone, except F4. Shota actually comes from a family of actors, so it was inevitable that he’d end up as one himself.

 

Abe Tsuyoshi as Mimasaka AkiraAbe Tsuyoshi as Mimasaka Akira
Mimasaka Akira is the most mature and reasonable member of F4. Despite being seen as a side-kick, usually he’s the one who patches up everything when something goes wrong and probably the person who keeps F4 together. He’s known to give a helping hand, whenever something comes up.
His family are bosses in the Underground. He’s also known to enjoy women who are much older than him, especially if they’re married and is considered a ‘lady killer’. And very much like Sojiro, he doesn’t take any relationship seriously and he avoids commitment.
Abe was actually born in China. His family moved to Japan at age 9 and he’s of mixed Chinese-Japanese heritage and speaks both languages fluently.

 

Sato Megumi as Sanjou SakurakoSato Megumi as Sanjou Sakurako
Sanjou Sakurako came to Eitoku as a transfer student. She quickly bonded with Makino and became her first and only female friend at Eitoku. Sakurako was the only person who didn’t seem to mind that Makino was poor and also seemed to enjoy her mother’s cooking.
When she ends up spilling juice on Domyouji, Makino stands up for her. Sakurako ends up quitting school but Makino and her still keep in contact during her absence.
However Sakurako’s intentions are quite obscure. She is seen as timid and shy and yet in reality she’s quite different. Actually Sakurako is a manipulative individual who holds a grudge and a secret for many years. In the end Makino’s and Sakurako’s relationship is quite odd. They are friends yet rivals and they seem to always aim for the same goal.

 

Matsushima Nanako as Domyouji TsubakiMatsushima Nanako as Domyouji Tsubaki
Domyouji Tsubaki is Tsukasa’s gorgeous elder sister. She’s married to a hotel owner in Los Angeles and seems to live a happy life. She frequently visits Japan to see her brother. Apart from Makino Tsubaki is the only person who stands up for his nonsense and frequently punches him and pushes him around. Nonetheless they seem to have a strong bond, where Tsubaki is often seen offering advice and help to her brother.
Her warm and bright character livens up every episode she takes part. However in the past she has given up a love because of her mother’s pressure and she regrets it. When she meets Makino, she quickly warms up to her, maybe because their characters are so similar. She sees potential within Tsukushi and Tsukasa and so she is frequently seen as giving a helping hand.
Matsushima Nanako is a very famous actress who starred in the 1996 movie ‘Ringu’ which became a hit. Her popularity is widespread and she regularly tops such polls as ‘best jeanist’ or ‘favorite female star’.

 

The Music

Ai-chinThis dorama happens to have an excellent soundtrack along with a brilliant cast. The opening song, Wish is actually by ARASHI, the group which Jun makes part of. This single was extremely popular and topped the Oricon charts selling a total of 303,812 copies.

Otsuka Ai composed and sang the image song for this dorama called Planetarium, which was released as her 10th single. Unlike the opening song, Planetarium was a slow and melancholic ballad. This single was another hit, getting the top spot on Oricon, selling 315,669 copies and ranking as Ai’s 2nd highest selling single.

 

Conclusion

I must say this dorama was quite entertaining to watch. Every single tiny detail and aspect about it was just perfect. The actors were well selected and fitted their role so realistically that the watcher could easily relate with how they were feeling. Inoue Mao really does an excellent job by portraying Makino’s woes and confused feelings and is extremely entertaining to watch. Also watching how carefully they selected the scenes and the high budget, I was thrilled to see how they replicated the manga scenes into reality.

Tsubaki realising her brother didn't really get what she said
Tsubaki realising how dense Tsukasa is
Tsukushi trying to learn the piano
Tsukushi trying to learn the piano.

Hana Yori Dango‘ is definitely one of the best doramas ever released. There was nothing to gripe about and everything is definitely set to be of the highest quality. Despite only having nine episodes the series covered a huge part of the manga and it wraps up everything quite well in the end. Thus it is no surprise that this series got a high rating and fanbase.

What has brought this dorama to life, was the fantastic amount of chemistry between the characters of Tsukasa and Tsukushi. While their relationship is quite odd and awkward, it creates a spark between them which makes you feel that they’re made for each other, no matter how many problems may arise.

On a final note I do suggest you keep an eye out for ‘Hana Yori Dango 2‘ which will continue from where the first series ended and shall take the protagonists to New York.

Rating: ★★★★★

Hana Yori Dango DVD Box

Purchase this item: YesAsia US | YesAsia Global

Torrent: Fansub by Sars Fansubs
Torrent: Original Soundtrack

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About the author

Rinoa enjoys spending her free time writing articles, most particularly reviews, biographies and news articles. Her favourite artist is Ayumi Hamasaki but she enjoys listening to a wide range of musical talents from all over the world.

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Sunday Blog Roundup: Short Skirts, Megukami’s Absence, and Dating Tips From The Happily Married » Ray Mescallado Archives UNITED STATES
August 25, 2013 at 1:51 am

{ 192 comments… read them below or add one }

C.C. July 15, 2012 at 6:21 am

i really love watching hana yori dango

Reply

Zherene AUSTRALIA March 18, 2012 at 8:46 pm

Until now i still love to watch hana yori dango!!!!!!!!…….I love you all!!!!……..

Reply

Arashifordream AUSTRALIA August 21, 2011 at 7:18 am

Japanese version is probably the best. Even though the orean one has LEE MINHO *melts* .. But this one has Jun.. <333333
GAAHHH

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haruhi SAUDI ARABIA March 24, 2011 at 1:34 am

HYD!!!!=(
F4
I miss them!!
Best Drama ^^
and better than korean ,taiwa.

Reply

Megan February 25, 2011 at 12:57 am

Honestly, I like the Korean version, although I just started watching the Japanese version, but where I’m watching it, the quality totally sucks! I’m hoping to find a site that can better support it, but right now, it’s not looking too well. And there’s only 9 episodes? That’s quick!
The Korean version is 25! And it made me cry so much!
Although I really like the Korean version, I’m going to try the Japanese version—and I love Japanese better anyways(;

Reply

thu November 10, 2010 at 2:06 pm

new fan here!
I love Jun, Shun and Mao. I love the way they act. I love Hana yori dango!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Reply

chai July 19, 2010 at 5:44 am

this dorama is great… funny but also romantic..,
inoue mao is very great become makino…

Reply

adiiitha February 27, 2010 at 3:50 pm

oguri shun es lo maximo es un gran actor y matsumoto jun tambien .
tambien sonlo maximo shota y abe

loa amos son los mejores

Reply

sakurasake September 18, 2009 at 3:17 am

you can watch all of the Hana Yori Dango series( HYD, HYD2 and HYDF) in http://www.mysoju.com. They also got Chinese and Korean dramas and movies…

Reply

aysha July 20, 2009 at 8:51 am

well this da loveliest and romantic drama i have ever seen.. i am a huge fan of japanese movies and series now.. after watching the “hana yori dango” i want to watch more and more Japanese series..thank u for the great series i love them … now im watching GOKUSEN SERIES.. its really good too.. really fun.. now da sad part is that i cant get the series because im from Maldives n we don’t get this from the market.. so v r downloading n watchin.. hehe.. =)
bai baai all of ya

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Tat PHILIPPINES June 25, 2009 at 6:22 am

I’m a Filipino, from MG to BOF, now I really like to watch the Original, HYD though I’m not yet finished on it . I’m just addicted to HYD. My next target is the comic books.. hehehe.. better late than never!!! Is someone here knows where I could download HYD with eng subs?

Reply

jza AUSTRALIA June 19, 2009 at 2:22 am

it’s very good movie!

i really love it..

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tsukushi June 10, 2009 at 7:59 am

really love this story, all of it. :)

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ana June 2, 2009 at 11:49 pm

i like jun matsumoto a lot, i first watched him in Gokusen and he’s cute there, i was not able to finish Hanayori Dango coz i was working before…God Bless!

Reply

shan June 1, 2009 at 2:36 am

Oguri Shun!!!you’re so cute!!

Reply

janissk.a May 17, 2009 at 3:41 pm

I like Hana Yori Dango. Matsumoto Jun is so beatiful *_* xD

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HelloO AUSTRALIA May 3, 2009 at 7:11 am

I’ve never been more addicted to any drama than this one! I am was Korean drama fan, and I was skeptical at first, but this is just the type of drama that is worth re-watching! This is what I needed to view other Jdoramas and I am sooooooo lurvin’ them! I’ve got to say, there were a lot of differences between the anime/manga and this drama, but that was exactly what got me… impressed. They made everything work! Even with the release of the Korean drama version, Hana Yori Dango (along with its 2nd season) remains to be my number 1 drama ever…
Acting was excellent. Chemistry between Tsukushi & Tsukasa (and everyone else) was evident. And yes, the soundtrack is amazing! The movie finale was eternal bliss *uwaaa~* but makes me sad, since it marks the end of it.

Reply

Tutku TURKEY April 26, 2009 at 1:22 am

F4 rullz :D I was watching a series of fun. I was sorry to end. This sequence was followed many people in Turkey. Greetings to everybody from Turkey.

Reply

Nurshairah binti Ismail MALAYSIA April 10, 2009 at 2:20 am

I like this movie too.but….I haven’t finish watching this movie.My sister had the Dvd movie of Hana Yori Dango.Hope to receive comment from someone.Youth……

Reply

emilyn AUSTRALIA March 29, 2009 at 5:58 am

All about to this movie is i like very much,by the way I’m Emilyn Aydalla from the philippines the no.1 fan of hana yori dango 1 and 2..This manga serye had remark to my heart most especially to Jun M atsumoto as Tsukasa Domyouji and to Inoue Mao as Tsukushi Makino ..they are the one who i inspired of so domo arigatou gozaimashite to them..I’m enhancing my japanese vocabulary so i’m learning nihonggo ’cause one of my dreams is to see the whole cast especially to my idols jun and inoue.. I’m always here, waiting for all of you.. good luck and more seasons to come..bye..bye..

Reply

marielle galano AUSTRALIA February 11, 2009 at 8:08 am

i really love this manga serye and all of the characters in hana yori dango and all of the characters is all greatful in acting they can really show the feelings of the characters i wish they can visit here in phillippines thnks congrats guys hahahaa

Reply

lea..harry potter AUSTRALIA December 3, 2008 at 11:57 pm

i really like it!everything on it as in!

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gisele December 2, 2008 at 12:35 pm

hana yori dango ga daisuki desu…
totemo kawaii…

Reply

uzakdoğulu asya TURKEY November 19, 2008 at 8:29 am

Domo arigato gozaimasu
harika bir film izlettiğinz için sizlere hana yori dango ekibine sonsuz sevgiler
sonsuz saygılar. Lütfen böyle güzel çalışmalarınız devam etsin sizleri çok seviyorum.
Benim kocaman bir kalbim var içine bütün sevdiklerim fazlasıyla sığar.
ALLAHA emanet olun.

Reply

asya TURKEY November 18, 2008 at 5:46 am

Evet gerçekten çok güzel bir japon drama komedi serisi hana yori dango ekibini
kutluyorum.1 Numara

Reply

BrieNiZa October 29, 2008 at 8:17 am

love this series…
again….
hehehehe,,,

this drama is so addictive and way too good…
is it even possible to happen in real life…
*hoping*

hahaiz….
it makes you wanna fall in love…

it makes you laugh, cry, get angry, and a lot more emotions …
all of these…
you’ll experience in watching the series…

tHe best ever !!!

Reply

Mary UNITED STATES September 21, 2008 at 11:37 pm

I love HANA YORI DANGO!! I’m very sad that it’s come to an end, but from reading the spoilers i think that it ends the drama perfectly…

ALSO, because of HYD i saw matsumoto jun! He’s so CUTE!!! I love Inoue Mao too :)

Reply

jamchaeushino tovireslare AUSTRALIA August 28, 2008 at 1:05 am

we are filipinos,we really love your manga…….especially the characters…..

HOPE YOU WILL VISIT THE PHILLIPINES!!!
WE LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Reply

marissa CANADA August 23, 2008 at 1:25 am

I loved Hana Yori Dango soooo much! It’s not a comedy but it really does have its hilarious moments, especially when Domiyouji gets embarassed about something (I think it’s soooooo cute! Jun really know’s how to act it out well!). I really thought I wouldn’t like this series that much because the plot didn’t seem interesting in any way, but I gave it a try because I’m a hardcore romance/drama/comedy/jdrama fan and since this got countless rave reviews and recommendations, I said what the heck, it can’t be so bad? I was wrong! It’s my favourite jdrama!!! Even though that’s surprising because the characters are not ones that I usually would like and the environment in this series is very drama-prone (haha) and shallow in some ways (like the red notice??? So low.). But I love it and it made me cry so many times!!!!! Haha I’m obsessed. Does anyone know where I could download it with subs (preferably the second season)? Thx in advance!!!!

Reply

Mr.Tri August 13, 2008 at 3:38 am
ann marjorie PHILIPPINES July 15, 2008 at 6:33 am

.,i really love this manga because its makes us viewers how to be in love it makes us inspired.,actually this manga serye has a lots of lessons especially for us teenagers.,
“I SALUTE THE HANA YORI DANGO STAFF”..hehe

Reply

new-fan!!!! UNITED STATES July 11, 2008 at 4:06 am

*hey*
new fan here
i love <3 this j-drama
im not japanese but im trying 2 learn 2 speak it….
im kinda new at watching these but when i saw it i got hooked and im rewatching it untill i can watch the movie but having some trouble finding the 1st season online if anyone could help it would b greatly appriciated thanx
lots of luv lydia <3

Reply

gHed July 3, 2008 at 5:59 am

mao inoue kawai no on’na desu…
keep up the good work…
arashi, sings well…
wish and love so sweet is my favorite…
love you all!!!!

Reply

shinta PHILIPPINES June 23, 2008 at 6:14 am

I love HYD1 & 2. Inoue Mao is an excellent actress though very young at only 18 when she did HYD1. I laughed and cried with her while watching the jdrama. Very entertaining and I can’t wait for the movie HYD Final. As for the guys, sorry but Matsujun overacted in HYD2 and his make-up too thick so it kinda irritated me at some point.

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...SugaR... SAUDI ARABIA June 2, 2008 at 7:15 pm

OMG

I realy love this drama

its the best :)

peace out…

Reply

Sisi RUSSIAN FEDERATION May 25, 2008 at 7:53 am

I’m adore this dorama!!! And I’m adore Oguri Shun!! His so cool, handsome…and…kya!!! He is the best!!!

Reply

Kyla UNITED STATES May 13, 2008 at 5:24 pm

I love, love, love this series! The story is funny, comedic, and dramatic all at the same time.

Reply

Nicole Angela D. Roy May 4, 2008 at 10:03 am

I really like this manga serye because of the characters of Tsukushi Makino,Domyouji Tsukasa & Hanazawa Rui they are really cool!!!!!!

Reply

San SPAIN May 1, 2008 at 1:40 pm

I love Hyd… I think I saw it 3 or 4 times. It´s very funny and romantic too!!

Reply

gorkem May 1, 2008 at 3:27 am

I love Hana Yori Dango 1&2 and Inoue Mao and Matsumoto Jun !!!!

Reply

cyrene AUSTRALIA April 30, 2008 at 8:13 pm

this is cute!! im a big fan of this program!!!great!!

Reply

lisbela JAPAN April 28, 2008 at 6:17 am

i love hana yori dango i love matsumoto zyun

Reply

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