J-doramaSoredemo Ikite Yuku

Soredemo, Ikite Yuku / Still, Life Goes On ~ Review ~ Dramajjang


“I hope that,
When the feelings i held in my hand reach you,
You will be on the other side of sadness.
And you will move forward.”


This is an article written by Kwon Sang Seung only for Dramajjang.co.
If you’re reading this article elsewhere, it doesn’t belong there.
Read the original article only at Dramajjang.co.


Soredemo, Ikite Yuku had been a part of my watching plans for a very long time now, but I kept waiting until I felt emotionally prepared to face a colossal wall of feels crumbling down on me. Truth be told, you’re never really ready for such dramas. It’s just that, at some point, a moment arrives, a moment that feels more suitable than before. Regardless of how prepared you are, once you enter this grieving labyrinth there’s no turning back. You can only move forward, episode by episode, to find out what lies at the end of the road.

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15 years ago, the younger sister of Fukami Hiroki (Eita) was murdered by one of his friends and the traumatic descent of two families started taking place in the wake of that eerie event. 15 years later, Toyama Futaba (Mitsushima Hikari), the perpetrator’s sister, met Hiroki and a multifaceted universe of interactions was born, not only between them, but also between the members of both families, as everything was being filtered through the past while the future was being sketched out in an even more unclear way.

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Soredemo, Ikite Yuku; Still, Life Goes On. A title doesn’t always reflect everything the drama may be standing for, but this one is highly representative. Despite everything that may appear along the way, life will keep going on even if there could be a sense of stillness binding you to the past. One way or another, life will go on whether you’re a palpable part of it or staring at it through the looking glass.

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Soredemo, Ikite Yuku is a journey amid scars and open wounds with the starting point being the moment time stood still while the clock kept ticking; mercilessly. Nurturing the pain by avoiding to face the truth in a straightforward way may lead to deeper emotional chasms instead of trying to fill the void within by accepting the facts. The character development was masterful as it was depicting each and every character’s forward and/or backward steps, including all the temperamental eruptions and feelings drowning in silence along with all the emotional pieces coming together in order for the human puzzle to feel complete.

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Throughout the drama, we get to witness every character’s course and the way his/her life had been and/or kept being affected by the ongoing flow of events. While the drama was maintaining a panoramic view when it comes to society’s manifold approach and the harm it may cause, everything was becoming more distinctive when it was being filtered through our main and secondary figures’ shattered prism aiming towards the cage where these dislocated rays could meet.

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The sense of loss, the masks of guilt that may conceal reality to a wider extent, the alienation process through pain, the absence of oblivion and the grieving burden of remembrance, the dehumanizing contours of revenge, the disheartening “what if” parameters and the omnipresence of the past are an essential part of Soredemo, Ikite Yuku. But pain doesn’t only estrange people, it can also bring them closer together and the more they take into consideration one another’s feelings the more human they remain as they struggle to move on with their lives.

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To forgive is to forget, but when forgetting will never be an option forgiveness becomes more complicated, but also more meaningful. The drama lays emphasis on sincerity no matter how hurtful the truth may be. At the end of the day, it may appear more relieving than a seemingly redeeming facade. There are feelings that may blossom under the sleepless stare of the abyss and the drama preserves the preciousness of life over the futility of being throughout its healing process from the weeping quietude to the emotional eruptions and from the gray stillness towards a more sunlit state of mind. When it comes to the two sides of the same coin, Soredemo, Ikite Yuku walks hand in hand with the Japanese psyche and culture while visualizing the different yet intersecting struggles of the victim’s and the perpetrator’s families.


The storyline is realistic and raw while maintaining a lyrical and often poetic but non-exaggerating approach in perfect combination with the cinematography that visualizes Soredemo, Ikite Yuku’s world through a more natural prism that often surrenders to a more artistic touch making the drama look like a painting in motion. The drama balances between indoors and outdoors shooting making its canvas more diverse with the lighting factor always doing justice to the surrounding environment, the characters’ internal world and the scenes’ vibes. You have to appreciate the sense of distance between a variety of characters throughout the drama, the presence or absence of warmth between them, the way the lenses adore the landscapes amid heavy feels, heartfelt smiles or emptiness and the use of angles and closeups that enrich even more the overall ambiance.

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All of the actors and actresses who structured Soredemo, Ikite Yuku’s world were remarkable in the way they brought to life their characters, but Eita and Mitsushima Hikari were the drama’s leading brigade with their soulful testimonies, solely and together. They were surrounded by a transparent cloud of chemistry and through their characters’ development we were able to witness them glowing together through gloom and interstitial delight. Demanding roles are for actors and actresses who won’t only live up to expectations, but they will also leave their mark on their characters making them their own forever. Eita and Mitsushima Hikari were stellar and the key to success was no other than their natural acting which was inhaling sincerity and was exhaling a variety of emotional horizons from utter tranquility to emotional outbursts. Their shattered smiles and volcanic tears possessed their own dynamics and scarred gently the drama’s canvas once and for all.


Among others, Jun Fubuki as Takami Toyama and Shinobu Otake as Kyoko Nomoko were magnificent as devastated maternal figures, Shunsuke Kazama visualized in the most representative way his dreadful character’s lifeless world, Eriko Sato and Kana Kurashina filled my sight with ponies of love, Mayuko Fukuda as Akari, Futaba’s sister, was remarkable in the way she was trying not to break apart and Saburo Tokito as Shunsuke Misaki, the perpetrator’s family’s paternal figure, was living up to any expectations trying to protect his family despite his own struggles.


Realistic and agonizing but also lyrical and heartening, Soredemo, Ikite Yuku isn’t only threnody in motion, but also a heart’s journey throughout the longest night in search of the dawn.


PS. Quoting another drama: “Some people are like that, like a drop of pitch black ink on a snow white sheet of paper, there must be a case to stimulate the potential monster in you.”


This is an article written by Kwon Sang Seung only for Dramajjang.co.
If you’re reading this article elsewhere, it doesn’t belong there.
Read the original article only at Dramajjang.co.


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Kwon Sang Seung

Kwon Sang Seung

elles viennent
autres et pareilles
avec chacune c'est autre et c'est pareille
avec chacune l'absence d'amour est autre
avec chacune l'absence d'amour est pareille
-Samuel Beckett-

No Comment

  1. January 10, 2016 at 4:02 am — Reply

    Lol I always remember the “I want to bend a spoon” line. 😀 Great taking a trip down memory lane with your review! I also like the new blog theme.

    • January 10, 2016 at 4:17 am — Reply

      It was so hilarious and their conversation at what they wanted was so simplistic and cute! Thank you so much and i was glad i was able to bring forth some memories ^-^

  2. January 10, 2016 at 10:11 am — Reply

    What a coincidence, I was just planning to start this today!!!
    It has been on my list for a long time as well but I finally got the courage to take the decision to start it and now I am more determined after reading your review ^_^ (have to get home fast 😀 )

    • January 10, 2016 at 7:30 pm — Reply

      It’s the feels’ telepathic power!!! XD
      I guess you’re back home now, but if you aren’t i will send my magic carpet just in case to bring you one step closer to the Soredemo feels! 😀 Something tells me that you will love this drama ^-^

      • January 10, 2016 at 9:53 pm — Reply

        I actually finished Ep 1&2. Oh, I am loving it already but my heart is in so much pain, I had to take rest and watch something else or it would have been dangerous for my health.
        That scene when he tried to strangle her and their conversation in it, I just felt like I am suffocating myself!!
        And how he can say so painful things that made me cry with that straight face T__T

        • January 11, 2016 at 3:27 am — Reply

          The pain will grow, but so will the feels :3 The scene in the forest between them was so powerful, but also the scene that followed once she found the flowers :/
          “Did you enjoy Xmas? Was the Xmas cake good?” >.< It was the piled up amounts of pain which were strengthening that straight face :/ Hang in there precious chingu!

  3. January 11, 2016 at 1:07 am — Reply

    Poetic review! As this drama deserve! Brings me down memory lane.

    “The storyline is realistic and raw while maintaining a lyrical and often poetic but non-exaggerating approach in perfect combination with the cinematography that visualizes Soredemo, Ikite Yuku’s world through a more natural prism that often surrenders to a more artistic touch making the drama look like a painting in motion”

    That is Exactly what Soremedo is! I love the way you put it!

    And yes every since that drama Eita and Mitsushima Hikari became and all time fave, and forever in my heart! Their characters here are the most memorable, and their chemistry transcends, as I could feel it even when I watched them playing siblings in Wakamono Tachi.

    My favourite episode though, as I remember to this day (it’s been 4 years already!) is episode 8, that was centred around Nomoto Kyoko (Otake Shinobu) and Mizaki Shunsuke (Tokito Saburo). It conveys perfectly their pain of being parent of the victim and perpetrator, respectively.

    This drama talks about a painful subjects, however flows perfectly, making it not hard to watch, but actually addictive.

    • January 11, 2016 at 3:32 am — Reply

      Thank you so much for your comment Smurf ^-^
      I had witnessed their powerful chemistry in Wakamono Tachi first, but here it reached higher peaks!
      You talk about the scene where she was talking in front of everyone at the table when she said that “perhaps once a mother loses her child she doesn’t only cease being a mother, but she also ceases being human” and later on when the father was trying to hold his family together while trying to find a way to remain a father to his son. Great scenes of a great drama. Once i started i couldn’t stop watching, it was THAT addictive and i still can’t imagine how you hanged in there waiting for the last eps >.>

      • http://mydramalist.com/profile/Mrmz
        January 11, 2016 at 9:39 pm — Reply

        There were 2 scenes (I might’ve gotten the episode wrong :P) The first scene involves Mizaki Shunsuke after realizing that his son did yet another crime. It was such an overwhelmingly dreadful feeling, this “Not again” all the suffering he and his family have been going through for so long already, and the cycle will restart all over again. It even Hiroki and Kohei, while being family of the previous victim, felt sorry for his inability to do anything about the situation. the second scene with Nomoto Kyoko when she came face to face with her daughter’s killer, trying to make him understand how consequence of his actions, (I don’t remember the details it could be she was just telling him how much she hated him). Both scenes were so effective, and both so haunting!

        As for my suffering, that is the cost of being a j-dorama fan!

        • January 13, 2016 at 4:50 am — Reply

          That scene was intense after realizing that there was no end to his family’s suffering after the second crime was committed! It was indeed an ongoing cycle and it happened the moment he was trying to make things “right” with the first victim’s family! I had also loved the scene when Hiroki’s mother met Futaba’s mother after the second crime, so much sincerity!!! The killer with Hiroki’s mother scene was so powerful… My brain got so messed up the moment he said that the girl looked beautiful floating in the lake >.<
          "As for my suffering, that is the cost of being a j-dorama fan!" This is so true! XD

  4. Myra
    January 18, 2016 at 8:30 pm — Reply

    So glad you watched it and reviewed it !!

    It’s one of my favorite jdramas, if not my favorite ! I watched it last year; after postponing as it wasn’t in HD lol *how shallow I am* But I’m so glad I saw it. Great acting. i’m just confused about the sister and her future and the little girl’s future…and I was so touched about her and the other guy…

    • January 19, 2016 at 2:30 am — Reply

      Thank you so much!!! 🙂 Such dramas don’t come out often, but when they do they take all our feels with them after they end! Hahaha, HD is a great reason for postponing, makes the watching experience more precious! 😀 Yup, they were a great ship that surrendered under the burden of the circumstances… To be honest, i haven’t searched around, but an SP taking us a few years ahead to see if Hiroki and Futaba met again and how Futaba kept raising the little girl and such would be more than interesting!

      • Myra
        January 19, 2016 at 9:23 pm — Reply

        You’re welcome! Exactly, such dramas are rare and we enjoy them even more because of that.
        An SP or any follow-up would be great, indeed 🙂

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