Watashi Kekkon Dekinain Janakute, Shinain desu (It’s Not That I Can’t Marry; I Don’t Want To) is a 10-episode romantic comedy drama written by Kaneko Arisa and aired on TBS every Friday as part of the Spring 2016 lineup.
It tells of the story of Tachibana Miyabi (Nakatani Miki), a 39-year old doctor who owns her own beauty dermatology clinic. She is successful in her career, but not in her love life as she remained single for the past 5 years of her life. During a reunion with friends, she met Tokura Seiji (Fujiki Naohito), the owner of the restaurant she and her friends went to. That was the start of their frequent bantering amidst him giving her love advices as she tries to win the heart of her old crush from high school, Sakurai Yōsuke (Tokui Yoshimi). In the process, she also got close to Hashimoto Ryotaro (Koji Seto), a carefree young lad who is interested with her.
I know there are a lot of dramas about 30-something women who are pressured to get married, but this is my first time watching one. My motivation was Fujiki Naohito because he’s an old-time crush. I got curious because of the title as well. I expected a woman who honestly do not want to get married, who would not pressure herself to conform to what the society expects of her, and who would stick to whatever principle she has. But then, it’s my fault for not reading the synopsis before diving into this mess of a drama.
Miyabi is a successful career woman who earns high income because of her work as a doctor. However, she’s stupid when it comes to dealing with men. She does not know how to express or assert her interest. I’m quite sure that her past relationship was initiated by the man. All throughout the series, she relies on Tokura. It irritated me that for a woman of her age, she had to get all the answers from him.
Tokura is also successful in his business, the Japanese restaurant which Miyabi frequent to. He is meticulous and arrogant. He takes pride in his own dishes. This pride of his is the reason why he got his own love problem as well. And yet he still gives her love advices, handed down on a piece of paper where his calligraphy skills is presented.
The two of them forms a bond as they slowly get to know each other more through the problems (mainly of Miyabi) shared between them.
Then, there’s Sakurai, Miyabi’s high school crush who she was not able to confess to even if they were close during high school. He is kind and selfless, yet he is someone who dilly-dallies a lot.
Honestly, I would have liked it better if what was shown was Sakurai and Miyabi’s high school life. I thought it would have been more acceptable to see their friendship. Their older selves are awkward together despite their close relationship before and it was a pain to see. Also, they were going in circles all throughout the drama.
For me, the most likeable character here is Ryotaro. He is interesting. He’s cheeky, sharp, and honest. To me, he acts more adult than the older trio though his reason for not returning home is childish. Anyway, Seto Koji’s acting is brilliant. He was able to stand on par with Nakatani even with their age gap.
The other likeable character aside from Ryotaro is Miyabi’s mother (Natsuki Mari), who gives her good advices and supports her in her endeavour for love, and Nomura Rika (Oomasa Aya), an employee on Miyabi’s clinic. She also frequently cheers her on.
At first, with the main leads’ banters, I thought the strength of this drama would be the dialogues. Their quick exchanges were like those in Date, but because of the plot, the dialogues, without doubt, suffered as well. Even if it’s been weeks since I finished this drama, I’m still irritated by the fact that I wasted a lot of time for this. The ending is the ultimate death blow to me. Until the last 30 minutes of the last episode, I kept hoping that it won’t go to that direction, but I know that deep down, I knew. All the hints from the start of the last episode, and even those which were dropped on the 9th episode, points to nothing but that ending. It pisses me off because I thought that all the hard work was for nothing. The ending felt rushed and so unnatural. It was worse because I just finished Kazoku no Katachi then, a drama which I deeply loved, especially the ending.
Oh well, at least the cinematography is good. I also liked the theme song “Sweet! Sweet! Music!” sang by Ikimonogakari. It’s upbeat and powerful. The other OST suits the scenes, but they’re not that memorable to me.
Overall, the plot is poor and most of the characters are not likeable at all. The best I got from this is the proof that Koji Seto isn’t really just a pretty face; he can act. I do hope I’ll get to see more of him! (I saw him only in Atashinchi no Danshi and Runway Beat before this.) As for this drama, not recommended.