Why aren’t there more people watching IS – Otoko Demo Onna Demo Nai Sei?
I.S is a Japanese drama starring Fukuda Saki and Gouriki Ayame on intersexuals.
(The online dictionary definition of intersexual is a person “having both male and female anatomical characteristics, including in varying degrees reproductive organs and secondary sexual characteristics, as a result of an abnormality of the sex chromosomes or a hormonal imbalance during embryogenesis.”)
The series is adapted from a 2007 award winning manga of the same name; you can read part of the manga series in english online here The show focuses on Hoshino Haru (played by Fukuda Saki) an intersexual who struggles with an opposing physical and mental sexuality; Haru was registered as a female at birth but brought up as a male and this creates issues as Haru enters college to obtain a pastry chef certification.
Fukuda Saki (picture left) has been skyrocketing up my ranks of female actress to watch this year; she played a shrine maiden and love insurance investigator in Shitsuren Hoken, a hardboiled third generation Japanese orphan turned undercover mole in an alternate future Japan in Quartet and a bereaved sister with a mysterious power in Keizoku 2: Spec.
I’m still gathering my thoughts about the show, which is halfway through it’s ten episode run. For those interested, Darkeyed Wolf has a basic summary for the first three episodes of the show, and many other fun recaps. I really hope more people give the series a try; as much as I’ve enjoyed the gender bender series this season, this is a more serious attempt to cover rarely discussed (on Japanese television) topics about gender, discrimination and sexuality.
In the meantime, enjoy Kusuo’s Omoiro Coordinate, the theme song of the drama. (I’ve been abusing the repeat button on the youtube video.)
The lyrics are lovely, but I’m particularly taken with the first two lines (having read a mandarin translation):