Lt. Fukuie returns; “Yoru no Sensei” drama features teacher challenge; CM of the week: Yomiuri Shimbun

“Columbo” remains one of the most beloved American TV series in Japan and has generated dozens of local copies. One is police Lt. Fukuie, the creation of mystery writer Takahiro Okura. Fukuie is a woman whose persistence tries the patience of not only her suspects, but her colleagues as well.

In the premier episode of the new series “Fukuie Keibuho no Aisatsu” (“The Greeting of Lt. Fukuie”; Fuji TV, Tues., 9 p.m.), a famous screenwriter named Fujido (Takashi Sorimachi) stages his own kidnapping in order to enhance his public image. His scheme is meticulously worked out, but Fukuie (Rei Dan) suspects that something is amiss, despite the fact that her supervisor (Goro Inagaki) believes Fujido’s story.

In the provocatively titled new drama series “Yoru no Sensei” (“Night Teacher”; TBS, Fri., 10 p.m.), Arisa Kanzuki plays Sakura, a single woman who loves to spend money on trendy things and never thinks about the future. She changes jobs often and at the age of 38 finds herself as a bar hostess, which she admits is the right kind of job for a person like herself. One of her regular customers, however, is trying to recruit a teacher for a night high school he works at, and challenges her to take the job. There is one condition: If even one student drops out, she’ll be fired.

She takes the challenge, which turns out to be tougher than she imagined, since the class is made up of students representing all walks of life and a wide range of ages. None have a real stake in school and can quit at any time.

CM of the week: Yomiuri Shimbun

In the Internet age newspapers are finding it difficult to justify home delivery, especially among young people who pick and choose their news. Yomiuri Shimbun is now running a campaign about the “power” of home delivery that features a cute young female delivery person.

Every morning she hands the paper to a grouchy middle-aged man standing in front of his house. He always opens to a certain page and sighs in disappointment, but one day he cries with joy and points out his discovery to the young woman. His senryu (humorous short poem) has been published. The woman congratulates him and says, “I’m going to deliver your senryu to everyone.” Apparently, senryu don’t have the same impact in digital form, though only middle-aged men may feel that way.