We loved getting easier access to Japanese dramas. There is always something special about Jdramas that you don't find in other dramas from other countries. NETFLIX's newest release is the Japanese drama He's Expecting. Now, on the surface, this drama might seem a little out there and weird to you. Japanese dramas can be a little weird sometimes but I promise you, if you give this one a chance, you will be pleasantly surprised.
*Now as per usual with any review I write, I will not be including any spoilers in this review.*
A QUICK SYNOPSIS OF HE'S EXPECTING: Set in a world where men can also get pregnant, Kentaro Hiyama finds out he is pregnant, he must navigate his life now as a pregnant man and everything that comes with it.
Overall, this is another drama that surprised me. On the surface, it looks like it will be a drama about a pregnant man. It is SO MUCH MORE than that. When He's Expecting was announced, I knew there would be some social commentary. I even mentioned that there probably will be in my MARCH WRAP UP post. There definitely was and it was mixed into this heartwarming and emotional story. This is a very enjoyable story.
WHAT I LOVED ABOUT THIS DRAMA
THE MIXING OF GENRES - I liked that this drama had a little bit of everything. It had a good mix of drama and comedy. The comedy was hilarious and as a woman watching this drama, I think I appreciated the comedy. The comedy came out when Kentaro had to deal with symptoms of pregnancy or doing everyday things while being pregnant. Things that women have to deal with all the time when they are pregnant. On the other hand, this drama had serious moments and again all real things that women faced while pregnant or just what people normally deal with in life. Everything balanced out and it was a good mix of everything. Not too much comedy but also not to depressing or dramatic either.
SOCIAL COMMENTARY - To have a drama that switched genders and have the opposite go through pregnancy, OF COURSE THERE WOULD BE SOCIAL COMMENTARY! One thing I noticed a lot was the dialogue. How Kentaro's frustration with his life was expressed. How he pointed out how ridiculous some of the experiences he had were. How the women in the drama responded to his comments. I loved the dialogue in this. Another thing was just the experiences that Kentaro went through while being pregnant. How his life changed once it became known that he was pregnant. How he was treated different by his colleagues, friends, family or out in public. How his relationship changed and developed with Aki when they found out they were pregnant. How Aki felt with this whole scenario or what she faced in society. This entire drama was social commentary and even pointed it out blatantly as well. All of this while having a heartwarming and impressionable story for its audience.
THE ACTING - When I learned that Saitoh Takumi would be in this drama, I immediately put it on my life. I liked him in other dramas that I had watched previously so, I was curious to see how he would be in this drama, given the story and concept of the drama. He did not disappoint. His acting was comedic, serious, heartwarming. He was a joy to watch in this drama. Same with the rest of the cast. They all did great with the story and what they were given to act in this drama.
HOW NORMAL IT WAS - I loved that even though this drama's concept and story was so out there and different but the characters and the story itself acted like it was a normal thing. The drama normalized the concept of a man being pregnant. It portrayed the entire story like it was a normal occurrence and you really just seemed to be watching a regular couple going through the ups and downs of their first pregnancy. You got a glimpse of other couples and what they were going through in the drama as well. Yes, Saitoh Takumi's character was surprised when he became pregnant but it was more his character just never pictured himself being a father or having kids. Kids was not a future he saw for himself. He wasn't surprised that he got pregnant but had this more realistic reaction that I am sure everyday couples have in real life. I liked that this drama portrayed this sci-fi or alternate reality concept so normally and realistically.
WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN BETTER
THE PLOT - I did think that one part of the plot was not needed. It came late in the drama and was put there to create drama before the final episode. I know this drama is based on a manga so maybe this aspect of the plot was in the source material. I have not read the manga so, I don't know. I think the drama could have concentrated on the main couple and their relationship. There would have been more than enough drama that could have been created to have the drama the story needed before the final episode. I just think bringing in this character near the end of the drama wasn't necessary and sort of wasn't needed for the overall plot.
NEED MORE - I would totally watch a second season. It would be nice to revisit the main leads and the supporting couples to see how they are faring in life. Maybe see how this alternative reality Japan has progressed. What other problems might come up in people's relationships and friendships. I want to know more about both of the leads' parents. How the new business venture had gone. What happened to the coworkers after the end of the drama? I think there is a lot of stories that could be explored.
Rating: 9/10 (Streaming on NETFLIX now)
Have you seen He's Expecting?
What did you think of the drama?
Is it on your list to watch?
Had you heard of this drama before this review?
Will you watch this drama now after reading my review?
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