A Look at the Leading Actors of Japanese Entertainment

A couple of months ago I did a write up on TW-actors and TW-actresses, which was relatively easy to do since there just aren’t that many of them occupying the perch as certifiable leads. The same isn’t true elsewhere, which is why I’ve been hesitant to attempt it for other industries. Nevertheless, I suddenly got the urge to run down a list of the leading men of Japanese entertainment and giving my two cents on them.

This list is by no means complete, and skews heavily towards the good looking actors rather than the acclaimed thespians. If you feel like giving a shout out to a J-actor you love but I neglected to mention, feel free to add them in the comments section. What I love the most about Japanese leading men is that they are all so very different from each other, both in onscreen presence and acting styles. It’s really not very cookie cutter over there, and I appreciate that.

Kimura Takuya

The Crown Prince of Japanese entertainment, with a twenty-year career spanning idol pop and serious acting. No one even comes close to his stature, name recognition, and all-around belovedness. SMAP is still going strong, releasing an album last year with sold out concert tours and variety shows that are still popular. KimuTaku is famous for doing one dorama a year, and it’s always highly anticipated. Last year’s ren’ai Tsuki no Koibito (Moon Lovers) may have been his biggest hiccup in a good long while, but he should be back on top with this year’s TBS 60th Anniversary dorama Nankyoku no Tairiku.

As for me, I adore KimuTaku, but he doesn’t own me like some other J-actors over the years have inexplicably gotten my number. My favorite KimuTaku dorama is hands down Pride, but I confess that I’m not a completist when it comes his works. I still have Sora Kara Furu Ichioku no Hoshi (A Million Stars Falling From the Sky) cued up and ready to go. And I am unashamed to admit that his career-making Long Vacation does nothing for me, other than add to my Takenouchi Yutaka love.

Fukuyama Masaharu

This guy has my number for some inexplicable reason. He was my biggest J-crush growing up, being a singer and actor that was just so darn appealing onscreen. I spent both Season 1 and Season 2 of the wonderfully touching Hitotsu Yane no Shita (Under One Roof) hoping he’d get the girl (the once young and darling Noriko Sakai), which he ended up doing at the very end. Yay for second leading shipping come true!

My favorite Masa dorama remains Meguri Ai with Takawa Tokiko, which was loosely based on the famous HK movie Comrades, A Love Story with Leon Lai and Maggie Cheung. In fact, I contend that Masa’s chemistry with Takako was way better than what she had with KimuTaku in Beautiful Life. Bijo ka Yajuu (Beauty and the Beast) with Matsushima Nanako was also another of his doramas I really liked. Masa is currently enjoying a humongous career revival after headlining 2010’s Taiga Ryomaden.

Takenouchi Yutaka

The original bad boy of J-actors, Yutaka was (is) my eternal lust object. Watching him in With Love could turn a girl into a woman just like that. I will always remember him as Hata-san (and perhaps dreaming I was his Teruteru-Bozu). I believe that had he not hit his stride as an actor at the same time as KimuTaku, he would be an even bigger star today. Imagine a talented basketball player hitting his prime at the same time as Michael Jordan, and that is what happened with Yutaka and KimuTaku. He reminds me of a combination of Takeshi Kaneshiro and Tony Leung, with plenty of simmering charisma to burn. Aside from With Love, I also adored his Beach Boys, THE classic bromance J-dorama with a great Summertime feel.

Karasawa Toshiaki

Toshiaki played the first modern Prince Charming of my J-dorama watching experience. His Imouto wo (also known as Tokyo Cinderella Story) was a classic 90s dorama that was the first Cinderella love story before that trope became a dime a dozen. I vividly recall swooning over him and falling asleep to the fervent prayers that I’d meet the perfect chaebol prince like him to sweep me off my feet.

Toshiaki is an actor’s actor, with his early fluffy doramas (like Imouto wo) happening because he’s so damn good looking the man has to fan service us all. But really he’s way more talented than playing a variety of the cookie-cutter romantic hero, even if I loved all the ones he’s played. He’s now one of the elder statesman of J-actors, one who can do any role in any project. Aside from Imouto wo, my favorite Toshiaki dorama is Oishii Kankei (based on the manga Sweet Relationship, which TW has also made into a live-action with Vic Zhou) with Nakayama Miho.

Eita

Good actor, great chemistry with Ueno Juri (where they did Nodame Cantabile and Last Friends), but I’m always perplexed by his hair. He’s got a great quirky vibe, but for whatever reason doesn’t tickle my fancy.

Abe Hiroshi

I loved him in Dragon Zakura (where he whipped my Yamapi into shape) and Kekkon Dekinai Otoko (The Man Who Can’t Get Married). He’s what I would call a man’s man, with a commanding screen presence. He’s always great, even if I don’t always like his projects.

Tamaki Hiroshi

He’s probably best known for his role as the prickly genius conductor in Nodame Cantabile, but I actually loved him in Love Shuffle more. He’s a great actor with the ability to disappear into any role yet always retain this aura of awareness. I don’t find him cute in the least, but he always elicits the right emotions from me when watching him act.

Fujiki Naohito

Swoon. Seriously? Who doesn’t swoon for Naohito? The man is perfect. Or shall I say Buchou is perfect. It’s hard to separate Naohito from his performance as Buchou (i.e. department head) in Hotaru no Hikari (Season 1 and 2, with a movie on the way next Spring) with Ayase Haruka. But he’s been acting for ages and has quite a prolific resume. He’s the type of handsome that once you get it, you’ll never stop seeing how gorgeous he is. His smile just lights up the screen. I love him to pieces.

Mukai Osamu

Bad boy. Bad bad boy. Osamu gives off such bad boy vibes that should you meet him at a bar and he decides to turn on his megawatt charm, you’ll wonder thirty minutes later where your panties went. I adore him as an actor, but would never think about bringing him home to meet the parents. He is such a scene stealer onscreen, always making any role memorable and unique. Hotaru no Hikari 2 was a trainwreck that was made palatable only because he was the only sane character left in that story. I also adored him in Ataschinchi no Danshi with Horikita Maki. Crazy dorama, but they had the cutest chemistry. I’m just dying to watch him in the live-action movie adaptation of Paradise Kiss with Kitagawa Keiko, which is just a brilliant stroke of casting him as George.

Oguri Shun

Maybe the best “actor” of his generation (along with Yamada Takayuki), but his penchant for picking the oddest projects really turn me off watching more of his works. His recent Juui Doolittle, which reunited him with Inoue Mao, was an abomination. I’ll always love him in Crows Zero and as the original flavor Hanazawa Rui in Hana Yori Dango, though his turn in HanaKimi was strangely lacking. As a young actor, he probably has the most extensive body of work amongst his peers, and is a true chameleon. I’ve never found Shun attractive, but he always impresses me.

Matsumoto Jun

Jun is the weirdest idol-actor on the planet. I swear when I see pictures of him, he resembles a pygmy monkey. But the moment he starts acting, you forget everything and he has your entire attention. He made the character of Domyoji Tsukasa in HanaDan likeable and endearing despite being such a total violent tool. I last watched him in the rom-com Natsu no Koi wa Nijiiro ni Kagayaku with Takeuchi Yuko, which was really sweet and interesting, but for some reason I have yet to finish it. Must do that.

Yamashita Tomohisa

Yamapi! My Pi! Does anyone need me to discuss him? Does anyone who reads this blog still not know who Yamapi is? In that case, I must not being doing a good enough job of squealing about him. He is my ultimate J-bias, my love for him knows no bounds. If I heard he was in town, I would literally take a sabbatical and go stalk him. If anyone wants to know why I love him so, watch Nobuta wo Produce.

Pi’s acting projects are hit and miss with me. In addition to NwP, I loved Dragon Zakura and Buzzer Beat, but loathed Kurosagi and Code Blue. I’m indifferent to ProDai despite having two actors I also adore in it, which were Nagasawa Masami and Fujiki Naohito. I’ll be the first to admit he has very limited acting range, but his oddball personality and his enthusiasm slays me. He’s also a solo singer and a member of NEWS. But I love Pi for his acting projects more than anything else.

Matsuda Shota

I call him the King of Pout. I know Shota doesn’t try, but he naturally pouts like he’s Zoolander on the runway. He’s a decent actor that I’ve liked more in his supporting roles, such as in HanaDan or Tsuki no Koibito. Looks-wise he reminds me of Lee Jun Ki‘s brand of combo masculine-feminine prettiness. I think Shota still needs a breakout role but he has plenty of potential.

Miura Haruma

He’s like the opposite of Mukai Osamu. He’s the guy you want to bring home to mommy and daddy, him with his dazzling smile and all-around sunny boy persona. I need to watch more Haruma projects, which I vow to do, starting with Bloody Monday which catapulted him to leading man status permanently. Another of his famous projects is the movie Koizara with Gakki, which is horrible, but they are so insanely cute together. No wonder J-ent went to town and they were rumored to have been a couple after the movie. I also checked out his recent Taisetsu na Koto wa Subete Kimi ga Oshiete Kureta (I Learn All the Important Things From You) with Toda Erika, and oh boy is that not my cup of tea. But Haruma is definitely the golden boy of the younger generation of leading men.

Hayami Mokomichi

He’ll forever be Nighto in my mind, having played a robot in Zettai Kareshi and actually pulling it off despite the dorama being a mess. My favorite Moko project is the live-action movie adaptation of the manga Rough, where he starred with Nagasawa Masami. He surprisingly had great chemistry with her, which I was not expecting at all since Masami is really hit-or-miss with her leading men. I found his recent Rebound with Abu Saki cute but not terribly compelling for me to continue.

Yamada Takayuki

Have you guys seen his performance in Bakuyakyo? Simply unforgettable and gutwrenching. I’ve been meaning to watch him in Taiyo no Uta (The Song of the Sun) with Sajiwara Erika since I’m a sucker for doomed romances. Like Oguri Shun, he always tends to pick really off-beat and quirky projects for the most part, so I’ve seen less of his works than I ought to. Though when he went mano-a-mano with Shun in Crows Zero, Takayuki completely stole the movie. His performance as Serizawa was pitch-perfect. Looks-wise he’s not terribly memorable, but his acting is just phenomenal that you’ll remember his characters before you remember him.

Kamenishi Kazuya

Kame falls into the MatsuJun category of idol-actors who, by looking at their picture, you can’t imagine anyone would like them, but when you see them in action they just nail it. I liked Kame in Nobuta wo Produce, even if my Pi totally stole his thunder there, but it wasn’t until the perfect romance dorama Tatta Hitotsu no Koi (Only One Love) with Ayase Haruka that I completely accepted him as a certifiable leading man. He acts and can look smolderingly hot to boot. Kudos to Kame for winning me over. I also am strangely mesmerized by the idol side of Kame, his being a part of KAT-TUN.

Nishikido Ryo

I’ve never liked a Ryo dorama until Zenkai Girl, but I’ve always liked Ryo. His smile is one-in-a-million, plus he can angst like no other. I think he needs to pick projects that better suit his sunny personality because acting-wise he’s just okay with respect to his range. But no matter what he does going forward, I’ll always have Zenkai Girl to rewatch anytime I need a Ryo fix.

Ikuta Toma

I like Toma, who was brilliant in HanaKimi, but he’s not an actor I have a need to follow. I think he’s one of the most talented idol-actors out there, but he always get overshadowed by some of the other more flamboyant and high flying Johnny’s in his generation.

Yamamoto Yusuke

A solid young actor recently elevated to leading man who has really earned his stripes. Everything time I see Yusuke onscreen, I can see how hard he’s working to deliver the best performance he can give. He just has that determination and dedication to his craft. The few episodes I saw of Tumbling, he was simply the heart and soul of that dorama. Of course I love him as Tamaki in Ouran High School Host Club, and am looking for him to completely break out as part of the cast of KimuTaku’s 2011 dorama down in Antarctica.

Okada Masaki

He is a cutie pie. Right now in his yet-young career, that’s at most what I can use to describe him. He was adorable in Otomen, but as an actor he’s still quite green. I didn’t watch him in the Aishiteru SP where he played Mukai Osamu’s younger brother, because that whole dorama is a tearfest that I confess to not wanting to touch. But Masaki has a bright career ahead of him and I’m happy to see where it leads as he matures.

Daito Shunsuke

Er….MINE? Yes, all mine. I first saw Shunsuke in Crows Zero where he showed that he can do alot with a limited screen time. I’m still watching Tumbling for him, which really is a Yusuke vehicle. But it wasn’t until Ouran High School Club that this boy flipped a switch in me and made me open my eyes to the extent of his potential. He’s leading man material in terms of talent, charisma, and sheer magnetism on screen. I’ve already picked out the perfect dorama for him when he finishes with 2012’s Taiga, with a leading lady he simply must reunite onscreen with. Hee.

Narimiya Hiroki

He’s one of the most versatile actors around, easily acting his age or ten years younger as a high school student and making it believable. He can do light or super dark roles with ease, and is genuinely a delightful actor to watch onscreen. I prefer Hiroki in happy roles, and gobbled up the delightful confection known as Yankee-kun to Megane-chan with relish. He’s a very striking actor, with very distinctive features that can either look handsome or freakish depending on his role. I find his real life personality quite quirky and his acting projects fit his profile to the T.

My thoughts:

So there you have it. A quick look at the main J-actors I watch and some I keep an eye on from time-to-time. J-doramas are hit-or-miss with me for the last decade or so, and I’m quite selective with what I watch nowadays. I personally prefer the stuff from the 90s overall, though concede most of those doramas are pretty unwatchable these days since it just looks outdated. I’ll usually check out a J-dorama if it stars one of the actors I really love with a story that sounds interesting to me, hoping that I’ll hit upon one that ends up being good.

What’s great about J-actors are they are so very different from one another, from looks to performance quality, which isn’t always the case among K-actors or TW-actors, most of whom fall into the good looking hunk or pretty boy mold. I also find that J-actors really tend to challenge themselves more with very different projects rather than sticking with a genre.

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Comments

A Look at the Leading Actors of Japanese Entertainment — 135 Comments

  1. sakurai sho, and possibly gackt although i have to admit that it is just for the looks factor. his personality is truly eccentric, but he is a jrock artiste after all so pretty much expected.

  2. I know it’s horrible etiquette to MINE! someone in my very first comment here (but not a first time visitor. I’ve been lurking your blog like whoa! My chem hwks want to have a word with you b/c I’m reading your blog instead of doing them. ) but Takenouchi? MINEEEEEEEEE!!! He’s the definition of UNF! I never really understand the appeal of Kimu nor find him attractive but with Takenouchi, my thoughts boil down to ” I want to bear your children!!” b/c I’m classy like that. hurhur ….Did you watch “Nagareboshi” with him in it? B/c if that drama was sentient, I would woo it with love poetry, flowers, then also have it babies. Sooo good!

    Another one I would MINE! is Eita b/c his wife beat me to it *sob* ….I find him, Shun and Hiroki to be incredibly versatile in their ranges as well as their projects. Their dramas could be hit or miss but one thing for sure about them is that there is no discernible formula for what they will tackle next, which is something I love and respect. This sentence cracks me up “…but I’m always perplexed by his hair.” b/c truer words have never been said. It makes me wonder if his baby has a crazy nest of hair like the father.

    I agree with your descriptions of Jun and Kame so much. They’re really not that attractive on paper but seeing them in motion, it’s like BAM! I especially adore Kame b/c Nobuta is my forever love for jdrama (I think Nobuta is pretty much as close to perfection as a drama can be) and it makes me sad that his drama forever get shafted. I don’t know why he tends to get pretty crappy drama and/or horrible ratings.

    Long first comment is long! Thanx for having this place :)

    • Love your comment! You sound like koala in terms of spazzing and territorial posturing. 😀

      You should comment more. 😀

      Koala, thanks for doing a roundup of j-actors. I only know a few, but I’m glad you posted a hot pic of Kyoya and sang his praises. (Again.) <3

  3. Among them I only recognize Hiroshi Tamaki.I saw his Tada, Kimi wo Aishiteru/ Heavenly Forest. I like it very much.By the way, I am first :) :)

  4. So happy to see Karasawa on the list! I would also add Tsutsumi Shinichi to the list… love him. And perhaps Tsumabuki Satoshi? I’m not a fan of his acting but he surely is an established actor in J-entertainment world.

    • Tsutsumi is an amazing actor! I still remember how he stole the show from his “brothers” in Lunch no Joou~ I’ve been following his works since then :)

      • hehe seriously, with Tsutsumi in a drama / movie, it’s expected that he’ll steal the show… unless… perhaps pair him up against Karasawa? That would totally be a dream project for me :) Would the dorama kami-sama hear my prayer? Onegai Ne?

    • Why didn’t I remember to mention Motoki Masahiro (okay I seriously think that I’m the ahjumma/obasan here mentioning all these names but what the heck! these actors deserves an honorable mention =P)? But Motoki is just so pleasant to watch and gosh, at the age of 40 sth he still looks mighty fine and gorgeous!

    • Continue on my ojisan list (sorry Ms Koala pls forgive me in this spam-like pattern coz whenever an actor comes to my mind I can’t help but need to mention them!):

      – Toyokawa Etsushi. First dorama of him would be Aishiteiru to Itte Kure! And his latest portrayal of Nobunaga in this year’s Taiga totally re-ignited my love for him. Great actor.

      – Since I brought up Nobunaga I have to mention the actor who played Hideyoshi, Kishitani Gorou. I will forever remember his performance in the dorama, Koibito Yo (really a great dorama) and of course, as a supporting role, in Imouto Yo (funny that the title of this dorama is from the perspective of Gorou, right? :) ). Darn I love all those 90s dorama… won’t the J-dorama kamisama give me back some of these goodies??

  5. *Squee* Oguri Shun! My love for him knows no bounds, he’s so damn charismatic! I have no idea how you could not find him attractive, but i have watched many a crappy project just for this man. Hot damn.

    Also, <3 Crows Zero. He and Yamada Takayuki were fantastic in that. I've never seen any of Takayuki's other work, but he was pure, unadulterated AWESOME as Serizawa.

    • yamada takayuki looks so cute and young in his movie say hello for me (2007) really different w/ serizawa.
      haruma miura!! oh my!! he got me in kimi no todoke!!

  6. Fantastic list. I’ll add Mizushima Hiro personally because I just like his screen presence, though he may not be as good as others in terms of acting skills.

    • yay hiro is good! I liked him in Mei-chan no shitsuji, but he totally rocks Becks the movie! what a pity he retired and became a writer…

      • yes.. i like Mizushima hiro too.. Mei-chan no shitsuji is such a strange dorama.. but it’s a fun one to watch.. he totally adorable in it… i will certainly miss him on screen…. but wish him the best in his writing career.

    • What! I didn’t know Mizushima Hiro had retired as an actor…was wondering why I hadn’t seen him lately. Did you guys know that he speaks great English (no accent)? He became even sexier to me after I heard him.

  7. YUTAKA for the win! My all-time fave, no doubt! I’ll shamelessly admit I learned Japanese cuz of him!…hehe

    Even though WITH LOVE wasn’t a great drama per se, but I LOVED him in it! He just oozes sexiness and charisma with any character he portrays.

    I also think his “popularity” is not on par with KimuTaku and some of the others is because he’s not a Johnny boy…not saying that all the popular actors are Johnny boys, but a lot of them are.

  8. You must finish MatsuJun and Takeuchi Yuko’s Natsu No Koi Wa Niji.. something! It’s really one of the sweetest, and most heart-warming jap drama I’ve watched in recent memory. Maybe it wasn’t as dramatic or compelling as other dramas (If you’d to compare it with Drunken to Love You in Taiwan, it is probably like a Sunny Happiness. Less the drama but ups the believability). It’s a a drama that left me cuddling in my sheets, very satisfied :)

  9. NARIMIYA, EFF YES. I love him with a fiery burning passion and would do horribly naughty things to him a thousand ways to Sunday if I ever got a chance. (I named my car after him too, hehe.) I’m not ashamed to say it — MINE. HANDS OFF, ALL OF YOU. I BITE.

    But I was definitely depressed for a few days when I heard Eita was getting married. Ugh, that boy. I love him and his ridiculous hair.

    Koala, have you seen Ryuusei no Kizuna? That’s probably my favourite Ryo project (but I respect how much he creeped me the hell out in Last Friends), although I haven’t watched Zenkai Girl yet..

    • Agree! Koala if you’re looking for a good Ryo drama RnK is worth watching. It was unexpectedly good, in my opinion. (And this coming from someone who practically watches any Ryo’s in. yes I heart him for life haha!)

  10. i love love love Eita! his latest j-drama Sore demo ikite yuku is so intense… it’s THE 2011 j-drama for me this year.

  11. I have a hugh crush on Fukuyama Masaharu. He is my ultimate favourite J-actor with my staying un-married and dreaming (until now) of marrying him :-P. But I think one actor should be in the list, it is TSUYOSHI KUSANAGI. His performance in “Narita Rikon” is truly great and HIDEAKI TAKIZAWA also should make the cut.

  12. I LOVE YOU! Right off the bat you pretty much named a bunch of my jdrama idols. My first asian dramas that I watched (other than the ones that are from my own country) were Japanese and Taiwanese. Long Vacation was my very first, followed by Meteor Garden followed by Beach Boys. This was way before super high speed internet when I would have to wait almost a day to download an episode but I absolutely didn’t care!

    Long Vacation started my obsession with Takenouchi Yutaka and Kimura Takuya. I’m surprised you didn’t mention Sorimachi Takashi from Beach Boys and GTO fame. Those 3 were pretty much my idols until I discovered Orange Days which kick started my obsession with Tsumabuki Satoshi and Eita. I’m so glad you mentioned Eita because he’s so freakin underrated amidst all the ‘idols’. If he wasn’t married I would be calling him MINE. (Oh what the heck, Eita’s MINE ladies! Back off!) Satoshi is also another great actor but he does very little drama these days that he’s lost in the shuffle. I highly recommend Orange Days. Gokusen was where I took notice of MatsuJun and Oguri Shun and it took another super popular drama called Hana Yori Dango for me to also notice Shota and Abe Tsuyoshi.

    I actually think that you give Oguri Shun too much praise. For me he’s a hit or miss. Sometimes he’s so wooden, or rather he picks wooden characters. Abe Tsuyoshi may have been a background F4 but he’s got some acting chops and can pretty much play any character. As for Shota, you should really watch Don Quixote which is airing right now. He’s such a hoot to watch in it!!

    Your praises of Abe Hiroshi, Tamaki Hiroshi and Fujiki Naohito are spot on! I always picture Abe as the Japanese Hugh Laurie. Tamaki is one I’ve liked since Nodame (Eita was wonderful in it too!) and I too thought that his acting in Love Shuffle was on par as his acting in Nodame. AND YESSS! Another Fujiki Naohito lover! The man NEVER gets the acclaim he deserves imo. Whenever I speak about him I usually have to refer to Hotaru no Hikari but I think he was even better in Love Revolution and Proposal Daisakusen. Other actors I would add would be Nagase Tomoya (Utahime was his best acting imo along with Tiger and Dragon) , Okada Junichi (Tiger and Dragon, SP) and Yamada Takayuki (Waterboys, H2)

  13. My heart skipped when I opened your blog! Yamapi is definitely YUMMMM!I thought he is on for another drama
    at first glance almost my favs are here – with an exception Mizobata Junpei – while he isn’t the cutest guy ever nor the manliest he sure is one of the rising stars in Japan – I’ve set my eyes on him in Buzzer beat – he is the direct competition for Okada Masaki- both play in the same range and genre with Okada Masaki as winner – he is taller and lil more talented than MJ, however MJ has more leading roles than Daito Shunsuke (indeed he is taller and looks better than MJ but in secondary roles in dramas and he has only one main lead in a movie (Fujosi Kanoji)
    Mizobata Junpei was “Rookie of the Year” (Movie:Threads Of Destiny or Akai Ito) – 2010 (33rd) Japan Academy Prize – March 5, 2010 and now we can see him in drama Detective Conan and the movie High School debut( not subbed yet) Also he was main lead in dramas like 81diver, Akai Ito or movies You Dance With The Summer, Neck with Aibu Saki, and secondary lead to Okada Masaki in Halfway.

    Both Mizobata Junpei and Daito Shunsuke played with Oguri Shun in Hana Kimi. MJ is Oguri Shun’s successor in Detective Conan, DS was OS’s bro in Crows Zero I and II(Miura Haruma was in II)
    I think Hana Kimi launched a few new shining stars … Shun Oguri, Toma Ikuta, Masaki Okada,Yusuke Yamamoto,Shunsuke Daito aren’t the only ones who used that show to launch themselves: Mizushima Hiro, Mizobata Junpei, Ryo Kimura and Shirota Yuu first 2 having a blast in the industry ( I wouldn’t go there where MH doesn’t have an agency because even now as an artist he is an awarded writer )

  14. I have a feeling we might be from the same era…LOL…All the senior actors are my favourites , except KimuTaku ..even most of your younger actors.

  15. Miss K, why you always make me go cuckoo? Why you always make lonely ajhummas like me, drool to death? It is part of your evil plan of world domination? Coz, it is freaking working!!! LOL My list starting with the ones that I LOVE, the ones that catch my eye and the others that I say “What the hell they are thinking, who told you, you can act”?? Seriously!!…

    1.Hayami Mokomichi -he will always be my Nighto in robotic armor? in Zettai Kareshi…- *fan girl scream* What can I say about the robot who made me cry a freaking river, yelling at the screen, don’t die Nighto don’t die on me you stupid piece of metal!!! And with the “special” make me think what make us humans after all?!! Yeah!! It hit me HARD!!! He was a humanoid, trying to be human. What makes a human anyway? The capacity to love without boundaries, without restrictions? The capacity to be by your side no matter what? What make a “Human” human? To cheer when you down, lift you when you’re beaten and clean your tears when you cry? What make us humans? Love someone so much, that if you know you can’t make her/him happy, you would step away? What make YOU human? Having a heart that feels, respect and understand, by putting someone else’s feelings before your own? If that makes us humans, then Night Tenjo is the most human “Human”, I ever seen!! “Humans inevitably die someday. Since we know death is imminent, we do our best to live life to the fullest. As we die, you want to leave something behind for those around you. Even if you pass away, you want those you leave behind to live happily.” Soshi’s Father Lasts Words; In Zettai Kareshi Special. Yeah, I know, I need help!! …But then he was Taichi in Rebound and the only thing I was thinking is “who doesn’t want to be a cake, and get eaten by those lips”!! Hell Yeah!! He had me at hello!! I admit defeat!!! LOL

    2.Fujiki Naohito – he will always be Buchou, my Buchou in Hotaru no Hikari – He is more than perfect! There are NO words in this freaking planet that can describe him!! He is the absolute manifestation of manliness!!! LOL He is the greatest man ever, and when he said to Hotaru “you came back because you love me” I was like, dang!! Finally give her some senses and please let her change her underwear!! LOL BTW why the freaking cats only poop on her room? Did she do it on purpose?? I wonder!!

    3.Matsumoto Jun -he will always be my favorite boy pet Momo in Kimi wa Pet or my genius bad boy / room 3D gang leader Sawada Shin in Gokusen- but, but, he had the cutest face EVER!! I just want to hug him, and kiss him, and make him smores!! I just want to spoil him ‘till Kingdome come!! What is wrong with me? I dunno, but I think I need a hug… and a tequila coz, it is getting hot in here!!!

    4.Kamenishi Kazuya – he will always be Takano Kyohei the beauty who was harassed by every employer and eventually fall in love with ugly Sunako in Yamato Nadeshiko Shichi Henge or Hatanaka Kosaku the boxer who stole my heart and the nun’s too in One-Pound Gospel!! -He made me laugh, he made me cry, and he made me scream!! He is one of the most versatile actors I have ever seen!! I love him!!!

    5.Yamamoto Yusuke – he will always be “Ghost Boy Kayashima Taiki” in Hanazakari no Kimitachi e (HanaKimi) or my drama queen Suou Tamaki who always called his beloved “ Ha…Ru…Hi…” LOL in Ouran High School Host Club!! -When he was Ghost Boy, he only had like 3 lines of dialogue, but every time he put his palms in front of the camera I cracked up, like a crazy chicken!! LOL, In Ouran I laughed so hard with all his facial expressions that my mom got worried! He is the man with the 1000 faces!! And every freaking time he will get lift off for being a perv I just pee my undies!! But he totally gets me when he enters the church and grabs Haruhi in his arms… That was breath taking and a defining moment for them! Coz, he will look for her till the end of the world if it’s necessary and she will wait coz, Tamaki is gonna find her!! Awesome!!

    Honorific Mention:
    •Mukai Osamu – he is Seno Kazuma the male version of Hotaru in Hotaru no Hikari 2- what I have to say is he make me drool every time he was on screen!!!
    •Ikuta Toma -Nakatsu Shuichi = the guy who doesn’t get the girl in Hana Kimi- auch that was hard!!! My bad!! Cracked me up, make me laugh like mad, but in his “serious parts” I feel him!! I feel you, bro!! LOL

    WTH?
    •Oguri Shun- he always be Sano in Hana Kimi- but I quite don’t like him perse, maybe was the character or not, but he didn’t move me at all..

    Out of bounds:
    •Daito Shunsuke – he will always be Ootori Kyoya the ploting genius bad boy with an ipad, and ain’t afraid to use it in Ouran High School Host Club- He is totally yours!! Enjoy! I try to avoid the emotional hematoma!! LOL

    Those who are not but should:

    •Koike Teppei – he will always be my Otani “big valley” in Lovely Complex (the movie)!!! -I watched the movie and the anime, totally read the manga!! Yeah I become obsessed with the story!! Love every part of it!! Teppei stole my heart in that movie!! I never being the same after that!! Such drama!! LOL

    •Mizushima Hiro – Asamoto Soshi, the human who get the girl in Zettai Kareshi or Nanba Minami 2nd dormitory head master in Hana Kimi- He is one of the greatest despite being young. He has a lot of experience in dramas, shows and movies.

    Here it is my list of your list of Japanese actors! OMG I’m turning Japanese! LOL

      • Yeah, we have to “move on”!!! Explore new frontiers and hotties!!! LOL but as Bogart said in Casablanca “We’ll always have Paris”… Well in our case we’ll always have Lie To Me and the Playground!!! LOL

  16. I have just discovered kimutaku…and man have I fallen for him. I marathoned Pride a couple of days ago and am currently going through Hero. But really marathoning Jdramas are nothing after finishing 24 episode Kdramas in two days.

    Love the list, along with kimutaku my favourites are Miura Haruma, Okada Masaki, Matsuda Shota, Eita.

    I didnt know Yamata Yusuke was in the drama with Kimutaku, yay so excited for this.

    If laws were stated otherwise and we could clone an individual, we need to clone Kimutaku…..but I bet Johnny’s already on to that lol

  17. Re Kimutaku: I loved Long Vacation, but on the other hand, quite the opposite from you, I didn’t feel that much for Pride, perhaps because I felt more connected with the lead actress of Long Vacation. Sora Kara is still awaiting in my HD> =P Not sure if it’s good…because the first 20 mins fell quite flat.

    Takeouchi Yutaka. He is the hottest thing that graced the planet. Full-stop. He gives off this aura without even trying!

    Abe Hiroshi. Trick. Trick is such an oddball, not quite the supernatural type, only halfway the genius of Kindaichi-kind mysteries. But the characters have such…odd chemistry with each other!

    TBH, I didn’t quite like Nodame. I loved Tamaki more in Love Shuffle too. When he finally ended up with Karina! Gosh..I like how his character felt so much for the unfortunate that he is unable to face them, and finally, he overcame his hesitations to become a politician. <3 Best role in my opinin. And Love Shuffle is definitely one of my favourite dramas. It has the elements of a jdrama…the realistic view of life…the charm which no other territory's dramas has managed to reproduce in full.

    Yamada Takayuki!!! I may love Jun and Shun and Osamu and Shota and Narimiya and Haruma…But Takayuki is the king of this generation. Watched Taiyo no Uta, and became a full Takayuki-fangirl. Crows Zero. Beach Boys. Sono Toki. MW. He never fails to bring a winning piece with his acting chops. The only one 'falling short' is Bakuyakyo. I've watched the movie version, and it was so painful to watch that I switched off my tv after 10 mins of the drama version, where Takayuki collapsed on the pavement bleeding to his death.

    Koala, you've never liked a Ryo dorama? What about 1 Litre of Tears?

  18. Interesting! Did you know that most of the actors you named had appeared in the Gokusen series. That’s where I found out who they were!

  19. Can I just have them all? 😀 (well, maybe the ones who are married I can let go of… maybe)
    Anyways, I haven’t watched (more like finished) a lot of Jdoramas, but they’re my go-to dramas after Kdramas :)

    My biases are Miura Haruma, Mukai Osamu, and Yamapi <3 + the rest of the list

    Miura Haruma – first saw in 14 year old Mother (or something like that; never finished the drama) and looked for all his other projects… too much of a newbie then, but look at him now! 😀

    Mukai Osamu – I remember him from Seigi no Mikata(?). I wanted him to have all the screen time, but yea, I never finished the drama. Now, he's all over the place yay! I'm so excited for Paradise Kiss.

    Yamapi!! I fell in love with him through Nobuta wo Produce too! That was my first completed Jdorama <3 It is still my favorite Jdorama too :) Through him I discovered the J-Idol world; however, I was unable to stay very long lol

    I loved Oguri Shun for a while because he was RUI, but… my love has since faded. I still appreciate him though.

    I'm indifferent to KimuTaku. I think he's a very attractive man, but I've only really seen Pride. I thoroughly enjoyed Pride, but I've never watched anything else he's starred in.

    I have not watched enough Jdoramas to really love any of the other actors (for their projects and talent not their looks, of course ehehe). However, I recently boarded the Eita fangirl train 😛 He is attractive in a unique way. Too bad he's married :/

  20. Love! Love! Love! Miura Haruma ♥♥♥ I can watch Kimi Ni Todoke Live Action n Bloody Monday any number of times just to look at him ^_^

  21. I don’t know, maybe I’d add Takizawa Hideaki? But he hasn’t really been in anything in a while. He’s got a really unique type of charisma, though, in my opinion XD Yes, there really are a lot of leading men in Japan @_@~

    Ah, Abe Hiroshi!! Will love him forever for Trick ^^ Takenouchi Yutaka is really awesome. I think the last thing I saw him in was BOSS 2. Fukuyama Masaharu was the genius in Galileo! He was really good there The only KimuTaku dorama I’ve seen was Mr. BRAIN. Okay, it’s becoming kind of obvious that I like mysteries with a bit of charm and humour mixed in XD

    Matsuda Shota was really good in Liar Game, and in the second season his voice somehow became lower, and so awesome!!

    I don’t know why, but Yamamoto Yusuke just isn’t a leading man to me…maybe that will change someday ^^

  22. since i am fairly new to j-dramas i am actually proud of recognising a few of the actors, even if they are only part of the second half of your list! Although i can’t remember any of their names (sorry!!) i agree that some are unforgettable in their screen presence and i will try and watch more dramas for them even though i am very fussy when it comes to my dramas!! I am still attempting to watch hana dori dango but i very hesitant even though i think it might be better than the korean BOF!! But i promise to finish it….one day 😀
    Thanks for the list though, it is was an eye opener and now i have more dramas to look for based on those actors!! Yay!!

  23. MatsuJun!!! I adore him to pieces! He’s MINE, my personal pygmy monkey to cuddle and love!! I find his big chicklet teeth and his plump lips are the most adorable. But most important, you got this extremely right Koala, he’s like the weird faced boy, but BAM, when you see him acts, you’re drawn into his world. LOVE HIM!!!

    • Sorry kdj,,he’s mine…. :)
      I love him ,,, he’s adorable,,and I can’t see another person,,, when he enter scene….

      Btw,,, kimutaku is my first j-actor,,,,, and thanks koala,,, I like ur list

  24. Mrs K, i have the same opinion regarding Ryo, idk, i just luuurve his smile although sometimes i find his acting a bit awkward…
    and Haruma Miura? you should see him in Kimi Ni Todoke, i never saw any of his work before (apart from gokusen, but you cannot count that 😛 ) but i fell in love with him watching KnT…
    and you said that Oguri Shun & Takayuki Yamada were arguably the best actors of their generation, but you forget Mr L aka Kenichi Matsuyama, although he didn’t do much drama, but his acting on movies were so diverse. he’s like a japanese Johnny Depp to me, and soon he’ll be playing Taira with (your) Daito Shunsuke, Yay!! that’s one drama worth waiting for 😛
    and IMHO i think Ninomiya Kazunari of Arashi is also one of the good idol-actor, apart from MatsuJun

    • you are right about Mr L ( soon to be a father) – I just watched Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac – he just outshined everyone in that movie : including Horikita Maki – it’s not the best jmovie out there

      Ninomiya Kazunari – he has a taste for heavy roles and tearjerkers therefore for happy viewers like me he is way under the radar. It doesn’t help that he isn’t a looker like everyone else gossiped above. Yup I’m that shallow – why?I have a right to chose: c’mon there are tons of jdramas – way more than kdramas – Japan produces 4 seasons X 7 daysX number of slots(even 24:30) X number of televisions – it is a huge number versus Korea where we can see 2 episodes/ week therefore Mon Tue + Wed Thu+ Sat Sun= 3 timesX 3 Televisions X 1 slot weekdays or 2 slots week-end days, more in weekends some dramas are on the long run with 50+ episodes
      Number wise Korea produces yearly the same number of dramas produces in Japan in a single season. When it comes about kdrama is easier to chose, while for jdramas I’m forever grateful for this article, even though I love exactly the same thing Koala didn’t enjoy ( I loved Kurosagi and Code Blue while ProDai I skipped, KimuTaku is love in Long Vacation and swoon in Pride, I can’t see him as handsome but a versatile actor – Hero was awesome, Mr Brain was odd and fun, in Space battleship Yamato was incredible good etc but he has better chemistry with Ayase Haruka rather than Kuroki Meisa whom I love to bits – I have a girlcrush for her . Even though I can’t stand Ayase Haruka on my screen I must give it to her … she is believable )
      In the same time K you are right MatsuJun resembles a pygmy monkey, but he has good taste when it comes about scripts and tries to act in his range . I love Kimi wa Petto and somehow JGS has a good chance just because the time passed and he is better looking. In the same way his Domyoji Tsukasa lost and won against Jerry Yab(2001) and Lee Min Ho (2009)

      Tamaki Hiroshi – love in Nodame Cantabile I didn’t dare to watch Love Shuffle : not my cup of tea
      Oguri Shun – I love to see him on my screen – dressed – OMG they have a thing to undress him ! WHY Japan? I know you are kinky in your own way – thing that I love with any other actor except Oguri Shun. I love that Jdramas aren’t innocent and lets me see the real world and not the one portrayed in kdramas where all the girls are virgins even after marriage (yup Family Honor it is about you too) but PLEASE let OS with the clothes on him
      Takenouchi Yutaka – I loved him in Long Vacation and BOSS( even though I wanted something more kinky with him )
      Taisetsu na Koto wa Subete Kimi ga Oshiete Kureta – I wanted to see Toda Erika in something else than BOSS -even with Miura Haruma in it I won’t watch it 😀

      Nishikido Ryo – I find him too petite for my taste : even though Aragaki Yui has the same height as him I could believe Zenkai girl just because it was in her character to fall for the guy with the soul rather than the baddie rich boy. It was even more obvious this when the girl running after his char(Sota) was physically right for him ( the secretary is as petite as he is) – in real life usually we won’t love the top model nor the guy/girl who can provide for us but exactly the guy who kicks our heart in every possible way- I loved that the drama took Cinderella and made her real

      Okada Masaki Last I’ve seen him in Raiou – nice scenery nice story but not compelling enough for me – it started amazing and lost its steam during the middle of the movie – turn off : some elements from The Barber of Siberia – some scenes and ideas were exactly like the ones from the Russian movie
      But I loved him in Ogon no Buta – literally stole Oizumi Yo ‘s thunder
      ZOMG Okada Masaki and Daito Shunsuke will act only in a taiga the next year (maybe a movie or 2 because DS will be in OHHC the movie) auch my heart
      Fujiki Naohito will be there too but it is a good move for him because his days a handsome leading man are numbered – even though he is one the most long-lasting leading man in Japan- he is 39 already and I give him 6 years – maybe 8 years(if he goes under surgery)
      Matsuyama Kenichi, Matsuda Shota, Tamaki Hiroshi are in it too- I bet it will an awesome year for newbies – who will play in other dramas at their heart content

      Koala Thanks again for this list – because I can go and pick the most interesting dramas without much effort

      • Yeah Ninomiya Kazunari, not as good looking as the others but I am a fan… for whatever reason i could not finish any one of Kimutaku’s dorama a gave up on Long Vacation after ep 2 and Mr. Brain after ep 1 it just did not grab me. Nino however is another story I’m trying to finish his body of work because for some insane reason this hunchback boy with the gerbil smile does it for me.
        I totally agree that these J-actors has some mojos going for them. They are not as polished as their K counterparts but they could sure grab your attention.

  25. A few familiar names/faces: thanks for that list, Mrs Koala. Was wondering about your TW-actors’ list: would you consider updating it to include Joseph Chang now?

  26. wa!!!Same here!But i was wondering, why Mizushima Hiro is not on your list??eheheheh…I therefore petitioned to include him on the list!eheheheheh..sooooo biased!:)Love your list. It almost agreed to mine:)

  27. All the commenters said the best about those actors, which I totally agree, but I just can’t stop noticing how perfectly designed are the eyebrows of most of them.

  28. Narimiya Hiroki!!!!!
    BEST VILLAIN EVER!!!!! He played J in Bloody Monday and I swear every time he came on screen he gave me goosebumps. I loved him in Yankee-kun… but BM had to be my fav performance of his. And it was such a hard choice between him and Miura, but J was so devilishly handsome I couldn’t help but want to cross over to the dark side every now and then.
    Sorry Miura. :o)

  29. Thanks for the write-up… Takeshi Kaneshiro is the one I like… the thing about Takeshi is that I watched him more in HK, china and TW movie than japan.. i think i only saw him in one jdrama back in 90s… he is handsome and versatile… my other favorites are MatsuJun and Mizushima Hiro.. the later one is no longer an actor… but I like his screen presence…. MatsuJun is funny looking.. i never find him good looking but is his charisma win me over.

  30. I love this list. There are some actors I didn’t recognize but most of them I know. Love that you mentioned my boyfriend Miura Haruma. I also like Yamapi, Oguri shun, Daito, Jun… So many hot boys.

  31. omg when i started to read this post, i find myself as cannot choose between them

    i think just 2 or 3 of them doesnt take my interest and the others are competing:D

    İ love japanese actors even though they are not the perfect looking like some k-actors made us think. but the thing is i love this about them, since they are not pefect they give me the more natural feeling in their character:D the only thing that i dislike about most of these actors or any japanese guy is their eyebrows :SSS

    fujiki naohito is the best looking japanese guy in my book:D then mukai osamu and okada masaki, but these youngsters also have their cuteness factor whereas buchou is the manly man:D
    Hayami Mokomichi is my newly found gem:D i didnt watch zettai kareshi, cuz i dont like the story which i know from the manga, but i did notice him shinzanmono although he was cameo:D

    and Nishikido Ryo, i didnt believe at first that he is the DV guy from the last friends at all! but he can cope with multiple characters:D love him:D

  32. Ah~! All the hot boys, men gather together under Koala’s rein. I’m feeling like I’m in all you can pick candy store, not only for this article but for BBJX as well. Thank you so much for introducing me to the world of grand Chinese dramas. I’ll be checking other ones in future.

    You are so right about Moko & Shun’s dorama choices. Even I couldn’t continue on Rebound after 1episode. Why? choose such a project, Moko? Your morning cooking show is the only thing for me to watch you occasionally now. Come back to me soon!

    Shun’s “Arakawa under the bridge” was seriously WTF with Shun in 河童(have no idea if there’s a name for this in English) disguise. The thing is that I just found out the original manga is by the very author of Saint oniisan the only manga I’m actually following and dying for the next volume to come out. Would I now give it another try? No, I’d rather read the manga version than watching Green Shun submerged in water… Tokyo dogs were so good…

    Hiro? Too bad, he’s sort of gone even though he said he had not abandoned acting all together. Tokyo dogs were so good~. Sorry for repeating myself. His book was a total disappoint for me, so badly executed.

    OK, so the rest, how many of them cutie pies can I mine? Osamu kun, Haruma kun, Shouta kun(for those of us, obasan, he’s forever a son of our beloved Yusaku san, tears, tears) Ryo kun, Yusuke kun(even for his frequent OTP acting), Masaki chan.

    It was the yummiest virtual breakfast I’ve ever had. Koala hugs for you 😀

  33. I got into jdramas first before I settled into kdrama land. Ah nostalgic~
    My first ever jdrama was Hana Kimi :). I was a big fan of the novel, so my friend recommended me the drama. So it was between the taiwan version of Hanakimi or the japan version. I tried the taiwan version first since Wu Chun and Jiro appealed to me more than Shun and Toma. But luck be hold. I got annoyed xD, so I tried out the Jdrama instead. And taaada~ One thing led to another…

    Shun Oguri – This man has a different appeal. At first glance it’s hard to call him handsome :’). But after you peel the layers, he’s quite a charmer. I’ve watched plenty of Shun dramas. I think he pulls off the high school get up really well. I was surprised to find out he was in his middling twenties.

    Jun Matsumoto – Where do I start? Hands down that Jun is the best Domyougi. No doubt about that. He’s just perfect as him. Ah I marathoned Hana Yori Dango 1 & 2, and waited a couples of years for Hana Dan Final. ;’).

    Miura Haruma – @___@. My obsession with this guy is to infinity and beyond. I’ve seen every project he starred in. Hi Wa Noburu has been put on hold, but will definitely finish. I fell in love with him in Koizora. As messed up that movie was, I admit I cried for days. He’s the actor to watch out for. I see him doing big time hollywood samurai movies in the future. Ah *__*.

    Eita – @__@. Oh Eita. I have the worst opinions about your hair, but everything else about you, is perfect. I’ve seen a lot of his works as well. And I’m currently putting Soredemo on hold until I’m emotionally ready.

    Two actors that I wish have more recognition is Hayami And Hiro. I’ve watched everything they starred in. @_@. I first saw Hayami in Gokusen, Ah Gokusen <3. Then I watched Hiro in Hana Kimi. Then as my luck would have it, my two current obsessions were casted for Absolute Boyfriend. I've read the manga twice before they even had plans to make it a drama. Absolute Boyfriend will always be my favorite manga x).. (Searched every anime store in my city just to find the volumes) Read the manga, cried for days. Watched the drama, cried for weeks. There's something utterly tragic about a Robot that grows a heart. *Still feeling it*

    Among that list my other important favorites are; Yamapi, Ryo, Tamaki Hiroshi, Toma, Mukai Osamu, and the promising cutie Okada Maski. ^__^.

  34. Good list, some more idols then actors but I love the fact that you added some “real” actors in the list.
    Takenouchi Yutaka, he seriously makes me swoon and his voice is wonderful.
    And Fujiki, his wife is so lucky ^^
    Of the younger generation I have to say Shun, Takayuki, Hiroki and Eita are extremely talented others who are slowly rising to that position is Kora Kengo. Some very young actors that have bright futures is Kamiki Ryunosuke, Daito Shunsuke and Okada Masaki.
    I would like to add Iseya Yusuke to your list, he is extremely talented but often underrated. (and just gorgeus to look at)

  35. I haven’t watch doramas as many as K-dramas, but my only love in doramas is Yutaka Takenouchi. the only J-actor that I still look for the latest news, latest drama…too bad he wasn’t in anything big or memorable as Beach Boys or With Love.

    2nd actor that I like, hmm, probably Takashi Sorimachi. I like his acting, and most of his dramas got my heart. I wonder why you didn’t mention him…and Eguchi Yosuke.

    I never ever like Kimu Taku. I can’t describe why, but no, he’s never tickled my fancy.

    MatsuJun – oh I agree your description so much! he’s definitely not a pretty/handsome boy, but he has his own charm.

  36. Kame is by far my fav. He caught my eye from the first time I’ve seen him on screen. He’s one of those actors that can easily convey and express emotions. Either singing, acting or dancing he can simply steal the stage and look smokin’ hot. An amazing blend of versatility, charisma and expressiveness.

  37. “What’s great about J-actors are they are so very different from one another, from looks to performance quality, which isn’t always the case among K-actors or TW-actors, most of whom fall into the good looking hunk or pretty boy mold. I also find that J-actors really tend to challenge themselves more with very different projects rather than sticking with a genre”

    I so agree with you here !

  38. My favs from the list :
    Matsumoto Jun : After watching HYD, I started respecting him as an actor. I even found him “handsome” at some points… As someone said before me he is the best Domyoji Tsukasa hands down.

    Yamada Takayuki : charismatic actor in a small body

    Takenouchi Yutaka : I loved him in Koori No Sekai

    Matsuda Shota : I love his voice and as you said he has potential

    Abe Hiroshi : Very good actor

    An actor you didn’t mentionn:

    Kubozuka Yosuke : lookwise he is unique and I loved him in a “long love letter” and GTO

    Masanobu ando : I can’t forget him as Kiriyama in Battle Royal

  39. Some k actors have surgeries.they look very doll like.it takes away from the charm in a performance.it s like ,you like them but if they weren t cute you wouldn t watch them.
    Even the roles they choose don t challenge them.

    J actors look more like real men.they don t look the same.there s a personality behind the pretty face.

  40. I will just have to mention my favorites just to get in my points –
    Kimutaku – yeah, been a fan for a long long time, but even I draw the line at Tsuki no Koibito – that was just awful.

    Sakaguchi Kenji – who was a sidekick in Pride, but was lovely in Honjitsu mo Hare. Ijo Nashi.

    And Takenouchi Yutaka – Yum. Yum. He’s absolutely fantastic in Nagareboshi, but almost always good in whatever he’s in.

    Abe Hiroshi – I have the Abe Hiroshi rule. He’s rarely in a real dud, whatever the genre, from serious to campy, he is good. So, other than historicals, when in doubt, I look for whatever Abe Hiroshi is in and give it a try.

    Matsujun – I became a Matsujun complete-ist in the oddest way. He’s a heck of a charming actor, although he does look…odd.

    Oguri Shun – his projects are wildly inconsistent but when he’s on, he’s really on.

    And – let us not forget langdon813’s favorite – Takeshi Kineshiro, who I am also a fan of.

  41. I love the list!

    Kamenishi Kazuya will always have my heart because of Nobuta wa Prodice and The Wallflower 😀

    Ikuta Toma is amazing! He took a different approach to his character in HanaKimi and made me love him so much more than in the manga.

    Shun Oguri is an okay actor in my opinion, but his face always reminds me of a pufferfish…

    Matsumoto Jun! He is the only one who could rival LMH and maybe win.

    YamaPi is the only reason I finished that terrible Kurosagi.

  42. Dear Ms. Koala,
    I love this post! I’m a late-comer, have only developed my interest for j-drama 2 years ago, so posts like this one are really a great gift for me.

    Please make a post about the leading actresses of J-drama? I really want to know what everyone thinks of them. Thank you so much! Cheers!

  43. Thanks for this awesome colleciton of j-actors. I’m really now into j-dramas because of KimuTaku and Yamapi; these are my top 2. I am discovering KimuTaku’s versatility; he’s foremost a live entertainer with his good singing voice and unbelievable dancing prowess. I love his moves. And he can also act. I love him best in rom-coms; he plays ‘awkward’ characters really well, like in Long Vacation and even in Change. I love him as Sena.

    Yamapi won me over with his Buzzer Beat, though it’s more the story and the chemistry between the 2 leads rather than Yampi’s acting.

    A runner up will be Mukai Osamu; he made watching Hotaru no Hikari 2 even more awesome. I so wanted the female lead to choose him instead of Buchou.

    Anyway, thanks again.

  44. Yutaka Takenouchi still makes me drool. I remember watching Beach Boys when I was like 14 and I couldn’t wait to get home from school to watch it on TV. I haven’t watched any of his dramas since, but just the mention of Takenouchi makes me all nostalgic.

    • Also, Odagiri Jo!!!! He’s got to be the hippiest actors I’ve seen, with such a permanent “homeless rockstar” look, but man, this guy has got the sex appeal.

      Plus, Kaneshiro. The VOICE!

  45. not sure what happened but i stopped watching kdramas after heartstrings… got a bit into protect the boss but only mildly interested. there is no kdrama airing at present that interests me in the least.

    i loved zenkai girl and thought ryo’s character was just adorable. love the series, hated how it ended. was terribly disappointed.

    and then i stumbled on koala’s spread on kimutaku and i decided to check him out. i have been on a kimutaku jdoramas for like two weeks now. watching nothing but kimutaku. still can’t figure out why coz i frankly don’t think he is that good looking. i mean he has his moments but not that much. its not like he has a body like a hunk. but there seems to be a vulnerability in his acting that has me mesmerized, i simply can’t look away. can’t explain it really.

    i don’t know the rest except for kame, which i adored in that drama with ayase. he is my first j-actor interest. i think he has range, but i don’t particularly like his choice of projects. yamapi, which i watched in buzzer beat (also watched coz of you, koala) who i think is cute but that’s it. i know of Abe Hiroshi and yukata because of my kimutaku binge as they were in those. i watched one drama with Hayami Mokomichi and i think he is gorgeous, not that great an actor but omg, what an eye-candy.

    i think ryo needs projects that will challenge his talent which i think he has. the eyes are amazing and could just drown in them. man, when he smiles and i’m lost.

    i am still looking for a kame project that would rival that which he had with ayase. where he can act like a normal person instead of a cartoon. i think he is talented, but have yet to find a project that would showcase it. btw, does anyone know where he is? i don’t see him in anything except that mr. brain where he was a guest.

    ok… back to my kimutaku marathon… thanks koala!

    • i`m totally in your ship!just suddenly stop watching kdrama..i realize their storyline is rather the same..rich boy with poor girl or vice versa… its like you are watching hisdustan movie ( hindustan before had been like korean fever b4 u know)..nway nowadays i’m more into japan drama especially produce starting in year 2000++(weird me)..tw drama(iswak,tkw,meteor garden,etc)..cdrama..(thanks koala for bu bu jing xin recap,now it totally hooked me up)..hkdrama(do you watch a taste of love??ma yau and joyce is so cute and had a matured love story!!definitely must watch hkdrama!)…my sister just recommend me to watch kdrama which star are u from…i just stop in the middle episode and do not know when to continue..its all because i just started to watch bbjx!!:P..

  46. I’m on a bit of j-drama kick right now so this post made my day. Actors on my list: Miura Haruma (yum: seriously he’s just so adorable), Kame (I lurve him), Oguri Shun, Nishikido Ryo (he just has to smile to get me), Yamapi (loved him in Buzzer Beat and Nobuta), & Matsujun (Hani Yori Dango is my favorite j-drama).

    I’m actually watching Tokyo Dogs right now for Oguri Shun. I put it off for so long but it’s actually really enjoyable. Shun and Hiro are great together. It cracks me up every time the two fight in the middle of a gun fight.

  47. My first Jdrama love was Trick…oh Abe and Nakama Yukie…

    Of course my love for her led to Gokusen and MatsuJun and Shun so I followed them over the years to HanaDan and what not

    You haven’t seen Bloody Monday? I never even bothered with Haruma until then…such a great show and he was adorable in the movie for Reaching You

    I won’t comment on everyone…(Love you Kame, Hiroki, and Yusuke)

  48. Thanks for the article Koala. Been a big fan of J drama and movies for such a long time I am so glad you posted this article. I dont have much time so I just rattled off my list to add to yours.

    Agree with your list:
    Kimura Takuya – You name it, I’ve seen it.
    Fukuyama Masaharu
    Takenouchi Yutaka
    Karasawa Toshiaki
    Eita
    Abe Hiroshi
    Tamaki Hiroshi
    Fujiki Naohito
    Mukai Osamu
    Oguri Shun
    Matsumoto Jun
    Yamashita Tomohisa
    Matsuda Shota
    Miura Haruma
    Hayami Mokomichi
    Yamada Takayuki
    Kamenishi Kazuya
    Nishikido Ryo
    Ikuta Toma
    Yamamoto Yusuke
    Okada Masaki
    Daito Shunsuke
    Narimiya Hiroki

    Will add:
    Matsuyama Kenichi – Gantz, Death Note
    Mizushima Hiro – Mei-chan no Shitsuji, Beck
    Ichihara Hayato – Rookies
    Koide Keisuke – Cyborg Girl
    Odagiri Joe – Shinobi Heart Under Blade
    Ninomiya Kazunari – Gantz, Ooku, Letters from Iwo Jima
    Saito Takumi – Saijo no Meii, Chase
    Sato Takeru – Beck, Q10, Saigo no Kizuna: Okinawa Hikisakareta Kyodai, and rumored to play Kenshin in Rurouni Kenshin (2012)
    Takizawa Hideaki – hasn’t done much lately but he will always be Yoshitsune to me

    Rising Star:
    Kaku Kento – Asuko March, Ranma 1/2

  49. When you said pretty faces, I was scared but after reading the list I don’t find half of them attractive so I was relieved :) I pretty much agree with your overall assessment. Especially concerning Kame, Shun, Jun and Toma. I loved those guys more as actors than artists and Toma has amazing comedic timing.
    As for those not mentioned: Sato Takeru, Kase Ryo, Watabe Atsura and Joe Odadgir. Out of the SMAP members I believe that Kusanagi is the better actor, he’s just not Kimura. I’m not sure he takes his skill as serious as he should and doesn’t stretch himself as often(character wise). K-san’s best drama(imo) is still The Great Family (however it’s interesting some of his best characters were named Teppei). And CHANGE is my all time favorite. Million Stars is a wonderful drama and definitely a watch if you’re a fan of his acting. I also agree that LV isn’t “all that” but it’s a timeless story of sorts. The drama just isn’t. I feel it works but it’s nothing close to Beautiful Life or Stars or even Love Gen. Pride, I still haven’t finished and am yet to understand what was so great about it as well… but… whatever.
    Takenouchi, Fujiki and Karasawa are all time favs though I haven’t even skimmed the surface with their most loved projects. I’m not huge into to J-rom com so I prob won’t ever…
    I don’t want to see Abe in anything but the Trick franchise. My first Eita project, I’m watching now, Soredemo, Ikite Yuku and love it and him(in it). I’m a sucker for tragic love stories. Tomohisa and Tamaki are loves of my life and don’t know what my drama world would be without them. Unfortunately, I don’t like the majority of Tomo projects :( . My fav is still Nobuta. Haven’t seen anything any good since. Tamaki and I are only a day apart in age, therefore I believe we have an eternal connection (kekekeke). Loved him last year in Guilty.
    My most anticipated project is most definitely Taiga 2012! God answers prayers! Oh yes, he does!

  50. Nagase Tomoya, Okada Junichi and Tsumabuki Satoshi!

    Nagase owned the characters he played! Be it lonely singer, yakuza learning rakugo, etc. KimuTaku may be the resident Johnny’s actor but I thought Nagase is more talented than he’s given credit for. Okada Junichi is great in SP. And I really like what he’s done in Kisarazu Cat’s Eye and Tiger & Dragon. Tsumabuki Satoshi… those eyes, that face~ I love him in Lunch no Joou.

    I agree with the Kaku Kento comment above. He was really offbeat in Tumbling, it’s hilarious.

  51. Unni~~ How could you do this to me! Now I’ve got a whole list of doramas I need to watch! I’m so looking forward to Mukai Osamu although I’d probably love to take home Miura Haruma. ^^ Thanks for this post – it was so much fun to read!

    • yup, nino is truly brilliant actor..i think movie is suitable for him! he should do more movie and go to hollywood indeed!

  52. When I started reading this, I was like “I don’t really watch many j-dramas, so probably I won’t know half of them.. But let’s take a look..” And I realized I know or recognize a lot of the names. J dramas always seem low on the romance, heavy on family and such (or may be I’ve been brainwashed by kdrama tropes). But I like their detective/mystery/police dramas. My favorites are Haruma (I dare someone to not smile back at his smile!) and Kame (effortlessly handsome!) [and Jin if you include the whole J-ent] Anyways,

    -Daite Shunsuke — that pic (ehm.. HE) is hot!!! I would love to watch him in something (preferably, where he isn’t stealing thunder from my OTP -pout- (yes, I ship my OTP even when I don’t watch the series lol)
    -KimuTaku and Yamapi — I only watched one of their dramas (Moon Lovers was a waste of time)(Yamapi was adorable in Nobuta!). Regardless of the dramas, i liked both actors in general. Very handsome. I just can’t find something with them that piques my interest. As a side not on Yamapi, when I first watched him, I was very curious to find out his real life personality (doesn’t always happen to me).
    -Miura Haruma — OMG… his smile is so shining lol I love him to bits as a person and an actor!!! There isnt enough of him around!!!! I still refuse to watch Koizora..
    -Kame — At the beginning (from pix and stuff), I didn’t really like him. But after Yamato Nadeshiko I got into him but I was (like you) totally head over heels after watching Tatta Hitotsu No Koi (gosh! I loved him there). I was watching a different drama when a THNK video was misplaced there.
    -Narimiya Hiroki — Loved him in Bloody Monday and then watched Megane-chan just to watch him in a light fluffy drama. He is a very good actor! Evil or adorable, he pulls off both charmingly!!

  53. Your list is a great introduction to J Drama male actors.

    And yeah KimuTaku – LOVE

    Agree with you as regards to Kame – not much in the pics (and to me really weird as an idol) but he was great in Nobuta wo Produce (now that is an excellent drama) and Tatta Hitotsu No Koi (I actually believed he is a man despite the eyebrows and schoolboy body).

    Oguri Shun – there is something about him that catches my eye, he was the one I always looked while watching Gokusen (despite the weird hair).

    The ones I really don’t care for are:

    Matsumoto Jun – you girls can have him, he does absolutely nothing for me
    Matsuda Shota – same – and he is worse since I think Matsumoto Jun can actually act while Shota is just standing there posing.

  54. oooooh love your list. There are some actors I haven’t seen yet…now I must go and watch them to see if they are really good….I love Miura Haruma….have almost seen everything…even the one with the loooong name. Love Narimiya Hiroki…he can play everything…they are both delicious in bloody monday…loved his cameo in gokusen – the movie! There are so many actors I love…^_^

  55. OMG OMG OMG I was looking at the shows your list of actors act in, and then i chanced upon the NHK Taiga Taira no Kiyomori – the cast is OMG AWESOME. And history fiction flicks are just my thing. I am so going to watch this! Koala, I hope you’d write more about it!

  56. I actually enjoyed Juui Doolittle and I’m hoping for a season 2 where we get to see more character developments (and background stories) for the leads.

    Hayami Mocomichi is really really hot but watching him act is kind of like watching paint dry. (Ok, maybe not as bad since he’s so nice to look at.) He needs to be casted in a cooking drama so he can put his skills to good use.

  57. Hello! I never posted anything on this site, but I gotta say something!

    I guess I’m more old school, so I definitely agree with your list of “mature” actors. I love Takenouchi Yutaka, Fukuyama Masaharu, Fujiki Naohito, and Kimura Takuya for years and years. I personally have watched Long Vacation at least 5 times, to me it’s definitely a classic, along with Love Generation, Tokyo Love Story, Bayside Shakedown (can you tell already that I <3 Yuji Oda?!) , and many more. You can easily love all of the lead characters, because they were that good. Oh btw, I would put Toshiro Yanagiba and Abe Hiroshi on my man's man list (don't laugh at me).

    Now, for some odd reasons, I can't seem to stand a lot of the younger actors, and none of them could win me over like k-drama or tw-drama young actors. After I saw Boys Over Flower, I thought, "Cool! Lee Min Ho is cute as @#$%, lemme see how the J version would fare." Started Episode one…holy crap Matsumoto Jun is fuggly. I watched the entire series anyways. I really want to like him as an actor but I just can't. If it is a teenager/young adult romance kind of deal, at least get someone hot so I can drool over him and forget the fact that I'm slightly older than the target audience. I have some exceptions ofc! I like Narimiya Hiroki in Yankee kun to Megane Chan, his "bad boy" role was pretty decent, and Okada Masaki was cute in Otomen.

    In conclusion, I'm still waiting for them boys to become grown a** men!

  58. what can i say except “YAY” . . . i have been a big fan of the Japanese entertainment industry and i wanna say THANK YOU for featuring them in your blog . . . well done Ms. Koala . . . this is surely an impressive list of J-actors and i might add, that most of them (to me at least) are really talented . . . and i would like to add the following to your list:
    Takizawa Hideaki ~ love him since SOS
    Mizushima Hiro ~ this guy sure has a lot of talent, too bad he retired as an actor
    Odagiri Joe ~ this guy will always be the kamen rider to me
    Ninomiya Kazunari ~ what can i say, he is Yamada Taro
    Matsuyama Kenichi ~ the famous L

  59. Woa, Fujiki Naohito is on the list! I totally adore him from the series Nurse no oshigoto…and I also started liking Mizuki Arisa. They were such cute couple onscreen!!

    Another series I really like is Gokusen and Trick with Yukie Nakama, basically covers all the male leads up there, hehehe. Stand Up is also quite good with Narimiya Hiroki.

    Two more mature and handsome male leads I really like are Shosuke Tanihara in Diamond Girl and Sakai Masato in Atsuhime….*dies*

  60. ah Matsuyama Kenichi…he is great…and absolutely versatile..I have seen him in Memoirs of a teenage amnesiac, nana and in the wonderful adaption of detroit metal city…gosh was he funny in that one…brilliant!!!
    Recently I booked a ride on the gokusen train….and there were sooooo many actors I used to love in it…I actually was dumbfounded that I didn’t knew this before…and it’s funny that you listed a lot of them. Jun, Shun, Kame, Haruma, Mokomichi and Hiroki…

  61. As someone who has watched a fair share of jdoramas, I am sad to say that I have never watched a KimuTaku one. Everyone always gasps when I say that. So I tried watching Tsuki no Koibito (and despite my love for Shinohara Ryoko), I didn’t get past two episodes. Nothing against KimuTaku…I just don’t have a history with him or any “drama” fate with him, it seems.

    As for Fujiki Naohito, because I came to jdoromas through “idols,” he was the first japanese leading men to look like a “man” to me. He’s so handsome.

      • thanks i don’t watch jdramas so i didn’t know but i’m thinking of staring…. any recommendations? btw i love your blog!!! :) <3 it's awesome!!!!! :) you're awesome!!! :) please keep up the great work that you do!!!!!! :) also i was wondering if you are going to a similar post for Kactors and actress? :)

      • There are lots! jdorama.com has a list of top 100 most popular. You can start with that.

  62. Abe Hiroshi-san was actually brilliant in Trick, 1, 2, 3 and the movies and specials. That’s the drama that finally won me over to the Asian drama camp because the previous dramas to that point had sucked badly that were available to me at the time. (Need I say Prince’s First Love. OMG. Disaster.)

  63. i totally understand your obsession with yamapi
    that happens to me too i love his work and hope to see him
    in new dramas soon. As for kame it is so true that you wouldn’t
    think people like him but his acting just pulls you in it’s weird.
    Yusuke i have been watching out for hi and he has seriously
    tried hard to become a better actor. One more actor i would love to mention is
    Junpei Mizobata he is usually the type to go unoticed but he does seem like someone that
    has started to rise. Although i haven’t had time for JDramas or anything his work is definately on my to watch list 😀

  64. Oh my gosh, Miura Haruma’s adorable smile is like hot chocolate on a freezing, rainy day. It’s the light of my day!

    I appreciate this list because I can count the number of Jdormas and J-movies I’ve watched on one hand. Someday (hopefully soonish) I’ll go back to the list and to try to determine which Japanese dramas are next on my list. Thanks! 😀

  65. I seem to be getting repeated “why is so-and-so not listed” comments. I prefaced this post by saying these are the actors I (personally) follow. That’s the only reason why certain actors are not mentioned, simply because I don’t really follow them or have any penchant for them. Not indicative of their stature or talent of any of that.

  66. I really loved yamapi in nobuta wo produce during my jdrama craze! I watched it a few times just because of him. I likes kurosagi and code blue also though, but not the kurosagi movie. Wish he does more quirky roles like in nobuta wo produce. I stopped watching jdramas for such a long time that now I don’t know where to start!! There’s so many good dramas.

  67. I enjoyed reading all the comments as much as the blog article itself. :)

    I’m one of those old schoolers that grew up with Tokyo Cinderella, Tokyo Love Story, Long Vacation, Beach Boys, Overtime etc., so I’m definitely more familiar with the Kimutaku, Takenouchi, Abe Hiroshi bunch. The other leading actors that may or may not have been mentioned are Oda Yuji, Nakamura Toru, Watabe Atsuro and of course Eguchi Yosuke!! Alot of my peers were crazy over him in “Under one roof”… the good-looker with the shoulder length hair :) He still does it for me in the recent dramas like Chase and Triangle.

    The younger ones I like are Odagiri Jo, Iseya Yusuke, Kubota Yusuke. The strange thing about Japanese actors are that many of them tend to be petite and small, which is practically unseen in the K-drama world. K-actors tend to tower over 180 cm and have well-built frames. So many of the Japanese male actors on the other hand weigh less than 55kg. Which is S-C-A-R-Y. Different nations, different ideals I guess.

  68. YES to this list! I fan Shota and Eita like it’s nobody’s business. I think Eita is such a great actor and his hair deserves it’s own fanclub. I adore Takenouchi Yutaka. The first drama I saw him in was Shotgun Wedding and I just loved it (and the lead female happens to now be a favorite of mine). Miura Haruma can do no wrong. Not only is he just adorably handsome, but his acting just makes you feel so at ease. Like, oh, this is nothing. I can do this in my sleep. Shun is a great actor. Nuff said. Jun, I didn’t get it at first, but he grew on me. I still to this day don’t undestand the Yamapi and Kamenishi Kazuya love, but oh well. I love variety!

  69. Love the list. I’m not too familiar with some of the younger generation of actors, but I’ll get around to seeing them someday. *Whistles*

    Anyway, I’m happy that someone actually mentioned Karasawa Toshiaki. My first time seeing him was in “Radio no Jikan”/”Welcome Back Mr. Mcdonald!” Even the annoying cardigan draped over his shoulders could not stop me from being mesmerized by his nonchalant gaze (though it may have been aided by the overwhelming joy of seeing him in the midst of all these seasoned veterans, including Kyōka Suzuki and Masahiko Nishimura.)

    However, my ultimate fangirling has to go – hands downs – to Tsumabuki Satoshi. キャーq(≧∇≦*)(*≧∇≦)pキャー He’s like the guy-next-door. Despite being a bit on the thin side (in his early twenties), I fell in love with his mischievous smile in Quruli’s “Highway” MV. He had a small and pitiful role in Kabachitare! starring Tokiwa Takako and Eri Fukatsu, and despite his poor acting skills (at the time), still managed to pull off the “Hey, he’s kinda cute,” factor. while he’s a big-screen type of guy, he was strangely endearing in dramas like Orange Days and Slow Dance.

    Check him out if you haven’t had the chance.

  70. where is nino???? he is best known for one of the best actor in jhonny talent ever even he got the most award for best actor from his drama last year.

    for me, jun still my most favorite and takuya still the best for me.

  71. abe hiroshi’s my ultimate j-drama bias. though sometimes i get bored with the drama plot, his charisma kept my eyes glued to the screen. up until now, kekkon dekinai otoko remains as my favorite j-drama. for me, he has this great charisma that will influence another actors, and he has a lead protagonist aura glued with him. i never watched him cast as antagonist but i think he still can pull it off. or anyone can recommend dramas/movies where he played an antagonist role there? i really want to watch it.

    as for kimutaku, i’m not really into his acting, but he seems to be surrounded by good writers and directors thus i can expect dramas with great, or at least decent, plot if he’s in.

    and i kinda agree with your opinion about mukai osamu, lol. mukai osamu does scream a playboy aura. and is it just me or he kinda look like park shi hoo? they have a mysterious charisma that’ll suck you in, along with the swift playboy moves and alluring smile. sadly, i’m not really moved with mukai osamu’s drama. he did a good acting in atashinchi no danshi and shinzanmono, but i don’t really enjoy those dramas’ plot. gegege no nyobo is arguably his best work so far. i hope i can see a better production for him.

    lastly, yamapi. yamapi oh yamapi, where are you? i hope you work on your body again, kke. xD

  72. hideaki takizawa! my forever flower boy! he really looks like he came out from shoujo manga, kke. i actually had an email id “takkychan” for years and kept his photo in my wallet when i was in junior high. xD oh i forget, i even had my madonna ost as my ringtone. kke. and finally, his resemblance to jyj jaejoong even led me to love jaejoong too. :p

    i’ve never heard of him since the last taiga drama project, where is he anyway?

  73. hi miss koala..would you like to add a new list for j actors??i really like how you describe them..perhaps you could add more actors..i like more japanese actors then taiwan or korea..it just seems like they are more variable and versatile..nowadays i’ve been following arata and kora kengo which made me realizes they can act in a many different roles.. for example kora act as a monk in ZEN and became a punk piercing boy in SNAKES AND EARRINGS…i love that!!hope you can add more j actors including,arata iura,kora kengo, satoshi tsumabaki, odagiri joe and kanata hongo..+.+

  74. love love love your description of Nao :))) i just can’t seem to move on after seeing him as Buchou~ he literally made me join the bandwagon of dorama addicts. and even he’s gazillion years older than me, i’ll keep swooning lol He’s smile, omgee Buchou!

  75. KimuTaku all day everyday! But yes, Long Vacation is…weird! I tried soo hard but 4 eps is all my sanity could take! Again yes, Pride=KimuTaku, i don’t think he could ever come close to that performance, script, chemistry…everything was totally on point!

  76. TAKENOUCHI YUTAKA!! Sorry, i am just a very recent fan and i just finished watching his Propose To You, Once Again and Nagareboshi dramas. And i must say! He was able to make me forget about my long-time crush on Fujiki Naohito. Kekeke. Seriously, Yutaka-san is the very definition of hotness. Can’t wait to go home now to continue watching Beach Boys.

  77. koala-san..i hope you can update more about j actor such as kora kengo, sakai masato, kanata hongo, gou ayano..it will be intersting!

  78. too bad no one mentioned Shinichi Tsutsumi. I think he’s the best actor out there in terms of technique. Screen presence-wise, Abe beats him, but elsewhere Tsutsumi is a bit better. Everyone also forgot Shinji…sorry I mean Teruyuki Kagawa, one of the most reliable actor of this day in Japan cinema scene

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  80. Awesome!!! nice blog you got here…..and i agree that yamapi is one the best actor in japan, though i’m not his fan. And of course i was happy, though expected, to see my fave Kimutaku on the list. But there’s one that i don’t agree….Jun Matsumoto. I just find his acting so unrealistic.
    And i’m also a lil disappointed that Tsumabuki Satoshi is not on the list 😀
    And also the maybe Koide keisuke, Kanata hongo, Satoh takeru, Mizushima Hiro, Ichihara Hayato. They are handsome and good actors too.

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