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(J-Drama Review) Life’s Punchline: Life is not a Comedy

P.S. This is a review after watching. There are perhaps some spoilers.

Life’s Punchline includes three of the famous actors I know: Suda Masaki from Pretty Proofreader, Arimura Kasumi from Our Sister’s Soulmate, Nakano Taiga from From Today It’s My Turn. Arimura was the main reason why I watched this series. Her acting is as glorious as the good old day since Flying Colors, a nostalgic 2015 movie. 

Life’s Punchline is about three men working as a comedy trio called Macbeth. Two of them have promised to their parents to stop this dream if they wouldn’t get popular within ten years. As well as the two sisters, the older one has been adhered with the past disappointments while the younger one held the emptiness to begin her own life. This isn’t a striking or thrilling kind of series. Instead, it depicts the reality of life that it isn’t always be smoothly successful. Everyone has their own problems and the reasons for their chosen paths. Each episode of Life’s Punchline continues calmly. They fight and they make up with each other. It tells us that ending something doesn’t always mean giving up. But it’s just probably the right time for the new beginning.

Though the three of them work as comedy trio, but their lives aren’t comedic at all. When Haruto talked about how he has zero competence comparing with the other characters, I could feel it deeply. Haruto didn’t get through university courses and any internships, whereas Junpei took over his family business and Shunta won a big gaming competition once. Haruto thought that his friends hold those keys. The keys that can enable Junpei and Shunta to continue their life after Macbeth disbands. But this doesn’t mean Haruto is untalented. Perhaps, it is a fear of change. I’m experiencing that fear now because graduation is reaching me. You know, this is a movie that can cheered you up strangely. When there’s a character that walks on a similar path as you, you feel like you’ve got a company, a friend who walks with you along the tough journey. 

What Nakahama experienced was emotionally cruel. I mean what her ex-boyfriend has done could bring her a fear of intimacy. The colleagues from the company she used to work for were as toxic as her previous relationship. I couldn’t imagine how I would endure those stressful feelings if I were Nakahama. She was kind towards her colleagues, and she offered them assistance. Then why would she have received those hateful speech and was blamed for something she wasn’t responsible for? This gives me headache, but I’ve seen either of these problems frequently in my life. That’s why I mentioned that Life’s Punchline is such a reality of life. 

If you’ve read until this part, you may think that this series sounds depressing. Then, why should I watch this? Well, it’s inevitable to say it’s chill or not overwhelming at all. But throughout the show, I kept repeating the phrase this is life. Being human doesn’t mean you were born with blessed fortune and success. Having enough effort doesn’t mean it’ll bring you success either. When we were young, like the three guys in the series, we had dreamed of all the things we could become. Our eyes were sparkling and it didn’t hesitate a single minute to look forward for the bright future. But the reality of being adults is sometimes a heavy burden. There are much more responsibility that hold you back and block you from obtaining your dreams. However, Life’s Punchline tells us that ending can be a wise choice. For something that doesn’t really work out, starting off the new thing may be better. 

Personal Rating:
4/5

Overall: I like the calm and realistic vibe of the story, but still, it didn’t get me addicted that much. 

Available Platform: Netflix

Episode: 10 Episodes/45 minutes long

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