Before a new television season begins in full, networks always air a few preview-type variety shows where cast members show up to plug their upcoming drama series. The content of such specials is usually a quiz or funny outtakes from the drama being promoted.
Fuji TV offers something a little different on “Tamori-Nakai no Konbi de Ii no ni” (“The Tamori-Nakai Combination Could be OK”; Mon., 9 p.m.), wherein comedian Kazuyoshi “Tamori” Morita and SMAP leader Masahiro Nakai throw a hanami (cherry blossom viewing) party attended by groups of actors who will appear on the new Fuji TV drama series this spring. All will bring souvenirs and food, and the festivities will be assisted by the usual cast of comedians who appear on Tamori’s daily noon-time variety show, “Waratte Ii to mo” (“It’s OK to Laugh”).
TV Tokyo’s new series, “Kazoku ni Naro” (“Let’s Make a Family”; Fri., 7 p.m.), premieres this week with a two-hour special. As the title indicates, it’s about family life, though specifically from the perspective of people in show business.
In the first segment, which will be a regular feature, a famously unmarried celebrity stays with a family overnight. In this case, it’s Takashi Okamura, half of the comedy duo Ninety-Nine. He visits a large family on a dairy farm in Iwate Prefecture, and in the process learns the meaning of marriage.
In a different segment, young idol Miki Fujimoto is about to give birth and the camera follows her husband, comedian Tomoharu Shoji, as he comes to terms with fatherhood.
CM of the week
Daiichi-Sankyo: A new spot for the drug maker Daiichi-Sankyo shows actress Kirin Kiki sitting at a dining-room table with a fictional family blowing out the candles on a birthday cake. “Let’s do it again,” she says cheerfully. “When grandma laughs,” the granddaughter thinks, “Mom laughs, too.”
The advertisement is for a new medication to treat people with dementia, as indicated by Kiki’s wandering gaze and childlike demeanor. Though once one of Japan’s most iconoclastic actresses, Kiki is mostly typecast these days as the dotty old lady, and this CM is a tie-in for the movie “Waga Haha no Ki (Chronicle of My Mother),” which stars Kiki and opens at the end of the month.