Time-Travel Japanese Dramas

The other day, I was craving for some time-travel/time-slip dramas and most Google results are Korean and Chinese dramas so I decided to write one for Japanese. Time-travel is one of my favorite genres because who doesn’t want to go back in time? Although I wanna go back in time to witness certain historical events and not really to change anything or so.

There’s not much time-travel dramas I’ve seen so I’ll narrow my list to Top 5. Here are my Top 5 Favorite Time-Travel Dramas:

  • Proposal Daisakusen 
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(c)la-romanesca

Seeing your best friend get married might be too late for you to realize your true feelings so turning back time is your best bet. Yamapi‘s “Hallelujah chance!” tagline will become bearable as the episode goes on but what made me really love this drama is the friendship among the 5 of them. Isn’t it sweet to have your high school friends present in your wedding and even as your videographer? haha. I also like how their friendship and love story have matured from high school to college and so. Though I know that choosing between Yamapi and Fujiki Naohito is hard, I’m glad that the ending (including the drama’s SP) have given me closure or I’ll feel bad for Yamapi after all those running that he did.

  • The Girl who Leapt Through Time

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I’m actually talking about the movie version and not the drama version. Sorry, but I only managed to watch the first episode and I have no immediate need to continue it. Not that it’s bad, but since I already know the story, the suspense isn’t there anymore. However, this classic time-travel story have gone from anime to live action and even though the ending always tear me up, I just love it.

  • Nobunaga no Chef

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Nobunaga is one of the most famous Japanese historical figures that is so loved and idolized that a story about his personal chef is a must. Nope, the chef is fictional but most events in the drama are historical fact and the way they weave war and food is so on point that it made me think that one of the reasons why Nobunaga managed to win his battles is because he and his troops are well fed. Anyway, Tamamori Yuta plays a French chef being transported to Warring-state period and creating French dishes to the delight of Nobunaga might be unrealistic but the food are so mouth-watering it didn’t really matter. Added bonus is to see our amnesic French chef being helped by a cross-dressing female (Shida Mirai) makes me cheer that our chef never recover his memories. XD

  • Nobunaga Concerto 
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(c)ogurin-tomasu

Okay, so it’s Nobunaga again, but this time we have a high-school student being transported to Warring state period and forced to be Nobunaga by Nobunaga himself. Oguri Shun might be too old playing a high-school student but he played the role of a clueless 17 yr old so flawlessly, you can’t help but cheer on his idiocy. His love-hate relationship with Kicho (Kou Shibasaki) is so cute and childish while his bromance with his vassals and retainers are just full of love, it’s basically a harem. In fact, I was wishing until the end that Denjiro (Yamada Takayuki) would just forget all about his revenge and just hug him. haha.

  • JIN

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This is one of my all-time favorite time-travel/medical Japanese drama that it will be unforgivable not to include this on my list. I love this drama so much that I don’t know where to start, well, for starters this drama doesn’t involve Nobunaga. Har. Jin-sensei (Osawa Takao) finds himself in 19th century, a time when Japan experienced a dramatic shift from conservative to modernization and that includes the challenges concerning medicine. Despite the challenges, Jin-sensei finds himself becoming a pioneer on many things from making use of ORS, penicillin, and even performing surgery. Just like in Nobunaga no Chef, they managed to weave factual events with medicinal challenges like the case of beri-beri.

One of my favorite scenes (although one of the saddest as well) is when Jin-sensei, who is back in the present time, read books pertaining to the 19th century and found no record of his existence. As if he never really existed during that time, like he’s a visiting alien who helped people, and erased his existence from their memory. So it was huge relief for me (although this is another heartbreaking scene) when he read a letter from Saki (Ayase Haruka), a letter about someone whose face and name she can’t recall, but knew from bottom of her heart that she loved that sensei. Awww, isn’t that true love?

That conclude my list of my favorite time-travel dramas, if this is not enough then you can also check-out these dramas as well:

  • Again!! – If you felt like you wasted 3 years of your high school life then you were given a chance to turn back time, what would you do? In Kinichiro’s case, he decided to join the cheerleading club.
  • Orange (movie) – I haven’t seen the movie but if it’s as good as the manga then this will be good.
  • Samurai sensei – a stiff samurai and an iconic hero being transported to the 21st century made them see if what they were fighting for in the past is all worth it.

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6 thoughts on “Time-Travel Japanese Dramas

  1. Jin is one of those amazing shows that reaches such a wide audience. I had a colleague that couldn’t stop raving about it, and she’s a Turkish teacher who had never watched a jdrama in her life. She’s just really into history so this was great for her.

    I much prefer the movie version of The Girl Who Leapt Through Time too. I’ve always been a fan of Naka Riisa’s acting. And also it just tore my heart into two. And yet, just like you, I can’t stop loving it!

    Couldn’t sit through the first episode of Nobunaga no Chef. But maybe I’ll give it a second shot 🙂

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    1. I love history and medicine and I think that’s what drawn me to JIN. Nobunaga no Chef wasn’t acted well, but the food is really good even if I’ve never tasted it.

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  2. Ohmygod..I’m so glad you included JIN cause it’s one of my most favourite Japanese drama of all time. I marathoned all 2 seasons in like, 1 week. Haha.
    I’m a medical practitioner myself so I was really invested with the drama. I loved it when he discovered penicillin. Haha

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  3. Orange was a really enjoyable film! My friend and I were on the flight to Korea when we saw it and we both shed buckets. I had just noticed her watching it and then before I knew it I had joined her.

    I didn’t realise that there was a manga for it and I cried like a child when I saw the last chapter! So yeah, a very emotional film/manga that I now love to bits. 🙂

    But Nobunaga concerto became one of my favourite time-slip dramas ever. It was just so well shot and like you said, the bromance was the best! I really want to read the manga, but it’s only in Japanese and hasn’t been translated into English yet. 😦 So watched the anime one the drama was over and that just made me love the story even more!

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