KimuTaku: Full Throttle! aka The Aerodynamics of Luuuuve
by Ender’s Girl
Kimura Takuya, Tsutsumi Shinichi, Shibasaki Kou, Kuroki Hitomi, Takenaka Naoto
In a Nutshell:
Commercial pilot Shinkai Hajime sets his sights on earning another stripe, but must first navigate through workplace issues, personal dilemmas, and unexpected romance at All Nippon Airways.
(SpoilLert: Moderately spoilerish, but nothing to lose sleep over, haha.)
On the surface, Good Luck! looks as sleek as a newly minted airbus, with all the modern trappings of a workplace renai. But the plot encounters some, uh, turbulence due to contrived situations and mediocre writing in the first half.
The opening sequence is promising enough with its brisk editing, modish music and saturated tropical hues (very One West Waikiki… look it up, heh). But after the initial thrill of watching a tan, toned, topless (!!!) Kimura Takuya sprint through downtown Honolulu in the first few minutes, the rest of the first episode, well, never really takes off.
The pilot *wink, wink* episode is usually a pretty reliable gauge of how the rest of the drama will play out. There are some exceptions, of course, as some dramas get progressively better and end up surprising you, while others get progressively worse after a pretty promising start. Good Luck! is no such exception. So why does this drama fail to, uh, leave the ground? *more winking* Hmmm, let me count the ways…
Good Luck! may be technically smooth and glossy (TBS certainly didn’t stint on the production values and overseas shoots, I’ll give ‘em that), but the story also suffers from faulty writing and (amateurishly) tries too hard to string together what the writers must have thought were Cute Rom-Com Moments and Cool Pilot-y Moments (they must have been contractually obligated to include at least 3 of each per episode, heh). Many situations have a manufactured feel, and seem like they were written in as mere springboards to An Important Moment in the story.
Case in point — Important Moment # 1: Guy meets Girl for the first time.
The Springboard: In Episode 1, Kimura’s character (the rookie co-pilot Shinkai Hajime) makes a rather bumpy landing after the captain (a dear old man whom we see far too little of) is debilitated by back spasms mid-flight. As soon as the plane is on the ground, a visibly PO’d member of the technical ground crew (who is obviously a SHE, and obviously the Main Love Interest in the story) confronts Shinkai and berates him for, er, not taking better care of the frickin’ plane. I’m not a pilot, but any knucklehead would know that in an in-flight emergency, a SAFE landing is better than a SMOOTH one. A “lowly” mechanic telling a pilot off for any negligence (real or imagined) immediately triggered a red flag for me. Dude, it just doesn’t happen. In the airline industry, you can’t change the pecking order anymore than you can tow a Boeing 747 ten inches using your teeth and a metal chain. So this encounter was obviously contrived to create sparks between the two. Goshdarn, I hate it when the writers do that. Click to read MOAR!!! MOAR!!!