If you’re familiar with Meteor Garden, then you must also be familiar with the Japanese version entitled “Hana Yori Dango” or “Boys Over Flowers.” The Japanese version stars popular Johnny’s idol from ARASHI, Matsumoto Jun, Inoue Mao, Oguri Shun, Matsuda Shota, and Tsuyoshi Abe. The drama series was based on the shoujo manga of the same name by Kamio Yoko. What’s more, it has two seasons and a final movie. Aside from the Japanese version, “Hana Yori Dango” also has three more versions: “Meteor Garden” for the Taiwanese audience, “Boys Over Flowers” for the Korean audience, and “Liu Xing Yu” for the Chinese audience.
The main lead, Makino Tsukushi who is played by Inoue Mao, is the only poor student in Eitoku Gakuen. She dreamed to be enrolled in Eitoku Gakuen since one of her idols is an alumna of the school. Eitoku Gakuen is for the rich and privileged youth and is ruled by the Flower 4 or F4. F4 is a group of four boys who come from powerful families. The group is led by Domyouji Tsukasa – the heir of the Domyouji World Finance Group. The three more members are Hanazawa Rui, “the introverted son of a large company; Nishikado Sojiro, a player who is the heir of a tea ceremony school; and Mimasaka Akira, a madam killer with ties to the underground.”
Once a student offends F4, the student gets a red notice and gets bullied by the group and the whole school. Makino wishes to study in peace in Eitoku Gakuen, however, it becomes impossible when she stands up for her bullied friend. She then gets a red notice and gets bullied by F4 and the whole school. The young woman calls herself a “tough weed” and vows to stand up for the bullying. Amidst the bullying, she starts to admire Hanazawa Rui and bears romantic feelings for Domyouji Tsukasa.
“Hana Yori Dango” is one of my most favorite Japanese drama series of all time. This certain drama series led me in liking and loving Japanese culture more. This also led me in loving J-Pop, which I’m really thankful for. Without watching this drama series, I might not be a fan of the Japanese pop culture and also might not be writing for Japan Info now. “Hana Yori Dango” is a very touching drama series as it follows a young woman’s dream of getting out of poverty, being tough during hard times, and falling in love with a young man who’s ready to give her everything.