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Why Didn't I Tell You a Million Times?

Why Didn't I Tell You a Million Times?

A Japanese supernatural romance with no interest in its own characters

5.6

TV Show

Japan
Japanese
Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi & Fantasy
2023
Kami Hiraiwa, Kenichi Matsuyama, Mao Inoue
54 min

TLDR

Better watch Ghost (1990).

What it's about

After her chef boyfriend Naoki Torino doesn’t return home, hairdresser Yui Soma files a missing person’s report to the police. However, the police are convinced that he just ran away from their relationship, all except for detective Yuzuru Uozumi, who inherited his family’s ability to see ghosts.

The take

If you’re familiar with the classic supernatural romance Ghost (1990), Why Didn’t I Tell You A Million Times? will remind you of it. It doesn’t have the comedic banter of Whoopi Goldberg, but it does have a back-and-forth dynamic between the ghost and the detective that sees him. It doesn’t have the leading lady’s potential murder, but it does have a murder to investigate. It also has more food porn, as the main couple is bound by Japanese hamburg steak and salty custard puddings. There’s something here about love transcending the physical realm and troubled pasts lead to a lifetime of service or a lifetime of crime. However, the series can’t decide on one perspective to start from and relies too much on flashbacks to tell its story. Why Didn’t I Tell You A Million Times? had the potential to be a moving supernatural romance, but it’s let down by lackluster execution.

What stands out

Why Didn’t I Tell You A Million Times? feels strange. With the ghost as an important part of its premise, you’d think that the show would take the death of one half of the main couple seriously. But even when Yui didn’t know that Naoki was dead, she still just accepted that Naoki left, without expressing any sort of heartbreak. The screenplay of the series doesn’t allow her to do so within the immediate moment – after his disappearance, it takes most of the first episode’s forty-five minute runtime to flashbacks from their relationship. This is just one of the many examples of how the series poorly managed its tone, and it’s why the first episodes don't grab viewers’ attention to the murder mystery driving the plot.

Comments

I did not watch all of the series. However, the parts I did watch were very confusing. Therefore, the series turned me off from watching more.

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