A Life ~ Itoshiki Hito

A-Life

Official Website
www.tbs.co.jp/ALIFE

Broadcast
From 9.00 p.m., Sundays, 15 January 2017

Network
TBS

Story
When Okita Kazuaki was starting out as a doctor, he was forced to resign from Danjo Memorial Hospital. He left his girlfriend Danjo Mifuyu behind and went to the US alone. 10 years go by and he comes back to Danjo Memorial Hospital from Seattle as a surgeon with outstanding skills. His mentor Danjo Toranosuke, who is also the director of Danjo Memorial Hospital, collapsed from heart trouble and has tasked him to perform cardiac surgery. Toranosuke is none other than Mifuyu’s father. In the time that Okita was away, Mifuyu married his own good friend Masao, a neurosurgeon who won Toranosuke’s favour for his remarkable management skills. Masao is now the deputy director and successor of the hospital. He has put the hospital on firm footing by streamlining operations but has been opposing Toranosuke on management policy recently. This friend was the one who plotted to drive Okita out of the hospital 10 years ago. However, Okita does not know that. Hamura Keigo, the head of the first surgery department, is opposed to Toranosuke’s difficult surgery, the young surgeon Igawa Sota is skeptical of Okita who suddenly showed up and the surgical nurse Shibata Yuki takes an interest in Okita. On the day of the surgery, Masao watches with the hospital’s legal adviser Sakakibara Minori and realises how much Okita has improved in these 10 years. Toranosuke’s operation appears to have been a success but … … Okita has to face all sorts of ulterior motives at the hospital and confront his good friend. But he never gives up amid the swirl of love, desire, friendship, jealousy and pride. Okita may be awkward but deals with patients with sincerity. His strong will to save patients even if the chance of success is zero gets the people working at Danjo Memorial Hospital to start asking themselves what real healthcare is.

Characters
Kimura Takuya as Okita Kazuaki
A surgeon who specialises in cardiovascular and pediatric surgery. Because he graduated from an unknown private university’s department of medicine, it was difficult for him to be given surgical opportunities. He went to Seattle at the advice of the director of Danjo Memorial Hospital, Danjo Toranosuke. He gained experience and becomes a surgeon whose techniques have no equal. His desire to save patients spurs him to persevere in his efforts to improve his surgery techniques without being bound by the taboos of the medical community and he studies surgeries from every angle. He is reunited with his ex-girlfriend Danjo Mifuyu when he returns to Danjo Memorial Hospital 10 years later. And Mifuyu’s husband Masao is his friend since elementary school days.

Takeuchi Yuko as Danjo Mifuyu
A surgeon who specialises in pediatric surgery. The daughter and successor of Danjo Memorial Hospital. She had dated Okita Kazuaki when she was doing her medical residency. She respects her father who expanded a small hospital in one generation. Because she has felt his desire to have a son as his successor from a young age, she aspired to be a doctor. After Okita left for Seattle, she got married to the neurosurgeon Suzuki Masao whom her father recommended. She has a 5-year-old daughter. She meets Okita again upon his return to Japan and feels shaken.

Matsuyama Kenichi as Igawa Sota
A surgeon whose specialises in cardiovascular surgery. He is an elite of Mantenbashi University’s Faculty of Medicine. His father is the director of Mantenbashi Hospital and also an influential person in the Medical Association. Because he hates being told about connections, he is honing his skills at Danjo Memorial Hospital. He is full of youthful ambition to be the best surgeon in the world someday. He is interested in the surgical nurse Shibata Yuki.

Kimura Fumino as Shibata Yuki
A surgical nurse at Danjo Memorial Hospital. Her knowledge surpasses that of top surgeons and she is impertinent but skilled. Because of that, she is very proud and will only be the assistant of a surgeon whom she regards as worthy. She serves as the surgical nurse of Hamura Keigo, the head of the First Department of Surgery, but gets interested in Okita Kazuaki both as a doctor and a man after she sees his surgery.

Nanao as Sakakibara Minori
Danjo Memorial Hospital’s legal adviser. A shrewd, beautiful lawyer has strong connections with the political and business circles and is also savvy with the media. Although she puts on a cool front, she is actually ambitious, which is something she has in common with Danjo Masao. She understands him even if he does not say anything. They have started an affair because of their relationship, and she supports him publicly and privately.

Emoto Akira as Danjo Toranosuke
The director of Danjo Memorial Hospital. Danjo Mifuyu’s father. He has established a national hospital in one generation from the small private hospital that he started. When the hospital is plunged into financial difficulty, he is persuaded by Suzuki Masao who is a top neurosurgeon and has management skills, and lets him marry his daughter. He is suffering from heart trouble. The destinies of everyone have been set in motion ever since he spoke of his desire for Okita Kazuaki to perform his operaton.

Tanaka Min as Okita Isshin
Okita Kazuaki’s father who runs a sushi restaurant on the fringe of the traditional working class neighbourhood. A stubborn man with the temperament of an artisan. He brought up Okita on his own after Okita’s mother passed away when he was 17. Although he says offensive things, he is secretly very proud of his son. He is kind at heart.

Oikawa Mitsuhiro as Hamura Keigo
A surgeon whose specialises in cardiovascular surgery and the head of Danjo Memorial Hospital’s First Department of Surgery. He has been good friends with Danjo Masao since medical school days. He enjoys a very good reputation with the people around him because he is cheerful and sociable and does not discriminate. But contrary to his attitude are the complicated emotions within him which are also directed at Okita Kazuaki. But those directed at Masao are stronger. He is partial to Igawa Sota but this is for payback when Igawa takes over Mantenbashi Hospital in the future.

Asano Tadanobu as Danjo Masao
One of Japan’s best neurosurgeons and the deputy director of Danjo Memorial Hospital. Danjo Toranosuke was persuaded on the strength of his management skills to let him marry Mifuyu and take the family’s name. However, while he loves Mifuyu, he has unbelievably warped feelings within him. He is broad-minded enough to associate and tolerate various types of people and push things forward as the leader of the hospital. He had been Okita Kazuaki’s good friend since elementary school, but something led him to scheme to get Okita booted out of the hospital when they were new doctors. He hides his strong ambitions and jealousy towards his childhood friend Okita Kazuaki beneath the slick management skills that he displays.

Scriptwriter
Hashibe Atsuko (Fragile, Ghostwriter, Boku Series)

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About jadefrost

This blog contains information and musings on current and upcoming Japanese dramas but is not intended to be comprehensive.
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