Sundays, 9.00 – 9.54 p.m. from 12 January 2014
At a housing estate, in a gloomy room with the curtains drawn, NPS (National Police Safety Rescue) member Kamikura Ichigo who is clad in an assault suit stands by the wall with his gun. Two men armed with guns have taken a housewife and her young son hostage and are holed up in the apartment next door. On the other hand, SAT (Special Unit) sniper Soga Iori has the cross-hairs of his rifle trained on the men from the outside. He waits for the instruction to shoot without moving an inch. However, the SAT’s mission this time is to provide logistical support to the NPS so commander Nakamaru Fumio can only standby for another order which never comes. NPS commander Kashii Hideki gives instructions to his men through their wireless devices. The objective of the third “S” is not to let hostages as well as captors die. Then, he begins the count to charge in. In the summer of 2013, half a year before this case, Ichigo was working hard as a police officer at a police box in the metropolis after his retirement from boxing. One day, a detective was shot in the foot at a multi-tenant building in Shinjuku. A large quantity of firearms and hand grenades were placed there. Looking at the police assembled outside the building, Okitsu, the leader of a loosely organised organised crime group that was showily committing crimes related to assault and drugs, called out to his associates that it was war from now. The prime minister gave the command to immediately deploy the SAT. Iori and the SAT members were dispatched. When Nakamaru was about to order his men to bring things under control, there was a directive to standby until there were directions from the superintendent general. Okitsu and his associates kidnapped a woman in the vicinity and demanded 300 million yen in cash as well as an airplane for their getaway overseas. Furthermore, because they took it lightly that the Japanese police would not be allowed to return fire if there was a hostage since lives are the number one priority, they shoved the hostage out a window. Shinoda, a member of the firearms control unit on the frontline, darted out with the intention of catching the hostage. However, the hostage was a mannequin. By the time Shinoda realised it, the sound of a gunshot echoed and he was struck down. Okitsu and his associates sprayed bullets at Shinoda, their target, and crowed about this being “police hunting”. Among the other immobilised members of the unit was Ichigo who was there as auxiliary police to stop curious onlookers. He joined two shields together and bolted off toward Shinoda. As the people around him stirred, he set up the shields to protect Shinoda and came under a relentless hail of gunshots. That was the moment that the third “S”, a special assault team which had still not been made public, covertly went in. It possesses both the mobility of the SAT as well as the investigative skills of the Special Investigations Team (SIT), and is tasked with bringing criminals into custody alive. This small elite team is a new approach to fighting against heinous crimes.
Mukai Osamu as Kamikura Ichigo
A NPS member. Rank: Police Officer. A retired professional boxer who became a police officer. When he was young, a shooting incident at a busy shopping street where he was out at with his childhood friend Munekata Yuzuru and her parents spurred him to be a boxer because he wanted to get stronger and be able to protect the people dear to him. After retirement, he was in his second year working at a police box as a uniformed police officer when a shooting rampage occurred. This led to him being scouted by Kashii Hideki for the NPS’ first assault unit. Armed with excellent reflexes, explosive power and punches honed through boxing, he is a close combat specialist who is good at getting control over his opponents using barefists. Cheerful and friendly, he has no hesitation in saying that a hero is what he aspires to be as a police officer. However, he has an uncompromising attitude out on the field. He often does not consider his immediate surroundings and would bolt out on his own, but he possesses the instinctive ability to get out of difficulty with an instant assessment of the situation because of his quick reaction and powers of concentration.
Ayano Go as Soga Iori
A SAT member. Rank: Police Officer. He prides himself in his “superhuman” sharpshooting and is the SAT’s best sniper. He was once assigned to a police precinct because he had aspirations to become a detective, and got a lot of attention as an up-and-coming rookie. After that, he became a special trainee because of his shooting skills and was selected to be a SAT sniper. He is the embodiment of the SAT’s ideal male; cool and collected, able to concentrate and endure standing by to shoot even if the wait is dozens of hours, perceptive as well as good in combat. He declares the NPS’s way of thinking naive and because of the high rate of repeat offenses believes, “Criminals will not repent. That is why it is necessary to shoot them dead”. Is this mentality due to an incident in the past where his family were victims?
Fukiishi Kazue as Munekata Yuzuru
Munakata Kozo’s granddaughter. Kamikura Ichigo’s childhood friend. She and Ichigo were raised like siblings since elementary school. When she was an elementary school student, her family and Ichigo encountered a random shooting incident while out at a busy shopping street. Her parents were killed and the criminal was shot dead on arrest. Together with the shock of losing her parents before her very eyes, was the simultaneous loss of a hateful person. She has been living with the pain of not being able to even ask why the criminal took the lives of her beloved parents. She has an affection for Ichigo which words cannot describe, but because their relationship is close like siblings, she suppresses her feelings of love. Although she is sunny by nature, each time she recalls the incident, the anger, hatred and despair which she has not been able to vent would spread through her. Even so, she chooses the path of a nurse in her desire to save lives.
Tsuchiya Anna as Yokokawa Aki
A lead researcher at the National Police Agency’s National Research Institute of Police Science. Rank: Superintendent. She knows everyone in the agency. A person with the remarkable ability to discover a string of clues from a science perspective to solve cases on the verge of going unsolved. She and NPS commander Kashii Hideki are famous for being oddballs, and she shows interest in Kamikura Ichigo. She studied abroad at Harvard University and set her sights on being the top economist in the world. However, she had a new aspiration after getting involved in a terrorist bombing and joined the police in order to personally save people’s lives. She feels a secret relationship between Kashii and SAT commander Nakamaru Fumio.
Takashima Masahiro as Nakamaru Fumio
The commander of the SAT. Rank: Superintendent. The strong, silent type who leads the SAT, a special forces unit with the creed “Defend Japan’s security to the last”. He and the SAT members including Soga Iori are bound by a relationship of immense trust and pride themselves on being the country’s last stronghold. Because of that, he feels indignant over the police top brass’ establishment of the NPS for the purpose of bringing criminals into custody alive. Although he cannot accept the beliefs of the NPS which is led by his former subordinate Kashii Hideki, he carries out operations without making compromises.
Omori Nao as Kashii Hideki
The commander of the NPS. Rank: Superintendent. Widely viewed as one of the most capable persons in the National Police Agency, he became the first commander of the NPS which was set up at the suggestions of Kiriyama Rokuro, the former Deputy Director General of the National Police Agency, and Amagi Hikaru, Deputy Director General of the National Police Agency’s Commissioner’s Secretariat. He has excellent leadership and foresight. A trusted leader who commands a select few individuals based on his conviction that “police believe in people”. However, he usually exudes the air of middle age with his love of pachinko. He used to belong to the SAT led by Nakamaru Fumio but withdrew because this is different from his conviction regarding criminals. He resolves the incidents they face through teamwork which takes advantage of the capabilities of each of his men.
Kondo Masaomi as Kiriyama Rokuro
The former Deputy Director General of the National Police Agency who is now a novelist. He is the head of Kiriyama-juku, a study group which promotes Japanese police reforms behind the scenes. During his time at the National Police Agency, he encountered the scene of Japan caving into terrorist demands. After that, although he contributed to the establishment of the precursor to the SAT, its existence was completely kept a secret and because of the broader interpretation of the second article of the Police Act which says “respect human lives, even those of criminals” he was given a hard time over and over again. After he resigned, he launched Kiriyama-juku. He worked on the political, financial and official circles, influenced Amagi Hikaru and made him set up the NPS. Because its existence is known to society, he advocates the need for an anti-terrorist special assault team, but … …
Sugawara Daikichi as Amagi Hikaru
Deputy Director General of the National Police Agency’s Commissioner’s Secretariat. He gets in touch with Kashii Hideki who has withdrawn from the SAT and makes him set up the NPS. He is always smiling but no one knows his true feelings. He is a key member of Kiriyama-juku and Kiriyama Rokuro’s confidante. He sets up the NPS and looks forward to its activities. On the other hand, he believes that the SAT is Japan’s last stronghold which will protect Japan’s security and the citizens need to understand this.
Honda Hirotaro as Munakata Kozo
Munakata Yuzuru’s grandfather. Munakata Gymnasium’s chairman and trainer. Kamikura Ichigo’s boxing coach. His son and daughter-in-law died in a random shooting incident and he brought up Yuzuru in place of her parents. He is old-fashioned in his way of thinking and obstinate. When he and Ichigo see each other, he would always call him names. However, in his hear, he cares about Ichigo in the same way he would his own grandchild. He hopes that things will work out for the two of them, but … …
Click here for photos from the press conference.