(J-drama Review) Cursed in Love — Bittersweet Revenge

P.S. This is a review after watching. 

There are perhaps some spoilers, including the comment section.

Yesterday, I decided to watch Cursed in Love (私たちはどうかしている) on WeTV. I’ve been seeing this drama for a while on Facebook and Twitter. Especially that they have Ryusei on it, it attracted me to watch finally.


Cursed in Love takes place in Kogetsuan, a traditional Japanese confectionery store. It’s a drama about a woman named Hanaoka Nao, whom everyone knew her as Sakura, lost her mother 15 years ago by a mistaken suspicion on the leader’s death. It was a bittersweet love because Tsubaki, who was the same age as Sukura at that time, told everyone that Sakura’s mother committed the crime. Truthfully, Tsubaki was very young. He spoke only referring to what he had seen on the night prior the crime which his father were talking affectionally with Sakura’s mother in his room. Sakura and her mother got kicked out of the shop afterwards. Her mother passed away, and Sakura’s been living desperately with an entitle of The Killer’s Daughter on her. One day 15 years later, a guy anonymously appeared to deliver her mother’s letter. Sakura found out that her mother was innocent. 

Sakura had an intense fear of the crime day. She avoided to face Kogetsuan’s family for a long time. Whether it was destiny or sin, she faced Tsubaki again to compete the confectionery which the winner’s confection would be placed on the customer’s wedding day. On that first day after 15 years, Tsubaki couldn’t remember her. However, he has a personal plan and asked her if she’s interested in marrying him. That’s when the revenge began and the first love reunited.

My impressions on this drama:

The representation of delicacy of confection making with its profound meanings and the original Japanese tradition

I love when they are telling the meanings behind all the sweets such as The Cherry Blossom Leaf indicating forever love and The Leaf with a Yellow Egg indicating Father Day. These confections also go well with the storyline which they indirectly reveal each character’s thought and feeling.

The Japanese tradition is represented in this drama very distinctively. The wooden shop, tea ceremony, and traditional clothes for examples. These elements could urge me to buy a ticket to Japan immediately after the pandemic is over. Yet, there are some parts that stand out from the story. I assumed at first that the story may be placed in the older years or era, but it isn’t. It seems to be quite modern observing by the smartphone and the laptop they use, but the yellow tone still makes it old. Though I concluded the time to be modern, it became vague because the characters also switched to use the old landline phone.

The characters' uniqueness

Tsubaki’s mother is my favorite. I mean I did question her a lot throughout the drama. However, I do understand why she became very obsessive and vindictive. I agree with her when she talk spitefully to Sakura about why she wouldn’t forgive her parents for loving each other. Tsubaki’s mother married into Kogetsuan without knowing that the Head already had his secret partner. She found out later, and definitely her loyalty had been broken. I think if we’re in the same shoes as her, we would be the same.

In the end, it has been exposed to us all that she is actually a kind and genuine mother from the deepest of her heart. Only because of the desire to revenge and her husband’s disloyalty (which the drama represents him as not being disloyalty. He only loves Sakura’s mother with his whole heart), she walked into the wrong path. The story made Sukura’s mother to be the victim, yet I think Tsubaki’s mother is the victim too. The saddest part is Tsubaki who also had to suffer in this complicated revenge. He didn’t have even a single idea that his mother loves him until the end. (Plus, she’s so good at singing.)

Another character I like and admire is absolutely Tsubaki. Honestly, I was quite disappointed about the ending in which Tsubaki wasn’t selected to be the heir of Kogetsuan. I could know exactly by the storyline that the ending is made for Sakura. It was only that Tsubaki’s been working exhaustingly to win his grandfather in the past 15 years whom he knows insightfully that he isn’t related by blood. Well, it was merely a small piece of disappointment, but I’m happy anyway since both Sakura and Tsubaki will marry and own the store together. So, whoever has officially inherited the store, it doesn’t matter after this… (I smile crazily and I want to see what will happen more after they kissed at the bridge. You only give us like 5 minutes for the happy ending! )

This drama is very entertaining. If you’re familiar with J-dramas produced by Netflix, the production here is quite different. I would say that Cursed in Love’s production is similar to  An Incurable Case of Love (恋はつづくよどこまでも). These are unlike Alice in Borderland with those kind of cool songs and aesthetic.

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