The word that comes to mind when I think of Netflix’s Good Morning Call is obsessed. I watched this so quickly, it’s almost embarrassing to admit. But this is one highly addictive Japanese rom-com series. Not sure if it’s right for you? Read on and prepare to be convinced. *Mild spoilers ahead
1. The plot will pull on your heart-strings over and over and over again
This is mushy stuff. If you don’t like sappy romances then this is not the show for you. If you love high school dramas, fainting heroines, broody male leads, melodramatic dialogue all mixed with laugh-out-loud moments, this IS the show for you. Nao is our slightly silly heroine who has a real heart of gold. Her parents recently moved to the countryside leaving her to live in an apartment alone while she finishes school. But, fate intervenes and she finds herself living instead with Uehara – easily the most popular of the ‘Top 3’ boys at school. He’s extremely broody and kind of mean – but naturally the sparks fly instantly between the two. What proceeds is a classic trope – Nao’s crushing deeply, but could Uehara possibly fall for someone like her? *sigh*
2. The ships
I didn’t know it was possible to ship one character with every possible contender for their affections, but there you go. While I totally ship Uehara/Nao for endgame, throughout the two seasons I have dabbled in shipping Issei/Nao, Natsume/Nao and Daichi/Nao. I can’t help it! They all look at her with major heart eyes! I think the main appeal is that they all go nuts trying to make her happy and looking after her – and usually in an obvious way. Like Daichi takes her out for dessert even though he hates sweets, Issei cares for her when she faints at work, and Natsume is constantly protecting her from any bad news. Uehara is perhaps the one who is least obvious in his affections, but he still has his swoon-worthy moments. One of my favourite moments is finding out he always calls Nao by her surname because he’s waiting for the day he won’t be able to call her that anymore. Because she’ll be married to him. *sigh*
Bonus points if you recognise Issei as dreamboat Kentaro from our other fave Japanese tv show, Terrace House.
Warning: if you like Japanese food this show is going to make you want to snack for days. From the bento box lunches Nao cooks for Uehara to the slurping of noodles at the ramen shop Nao works at, you’ll be ordering Uber Eats before you can say itadakimasu. Be sure to check out our post all about the many delicious dishes seen in Good Morning Call.
4. The sights
Having never been to Japan, part of the appeal watching this show is seeing the streets of Tokyo and the places the characters visit throughout the two seasons. For example, in season one, the amazing-looking aquarium Aqua Park, the Fuji Q theme park complete with haunted house and ferris wheel with special see-through ‘love gondolas’ and the Ikaho Onsen (hot springs) getaway. And then in season two, the Machida squirrel garden, and Flower Land Kamifurano. If someone could explain to me what exactly Flower Land is, I’d be eternally grateful. Because I looked up the website to try and figure it out and the translation provided by Google did not go well!
5. Everything kawaii
Watching this show makes me want to decorate my planner in cute stickers, dangle ornaments from my bag, and cover my couch in plush toys. From Nao’s tissue box/plush toy combo and the heart-shaped carrots on the cabbage rolls she makes for Uehara, to her entire season two apartment and every single item in the handicrafts club room, this show is so kawaii it hurts.
6. Doona table aka the table heater aka kotatsu
Umm I need this in my life ASAP. I’ve never seen one of these before and wondered what on earth it was. Then I googled it and realised it’s a doona over a coffee table and has a heater underneath! Perfect for winter and snuggling underneath with Uehara while eating milk pudding. SOLD. Take my money.
7. Nao’s daydreams
One of the most entertaining things about Nao is her ability to have such high-quality daydreams in public where everyone can see her. Usually she’s sighing and giggling and looking ‘creepy’ according to Uehara. Here, in full view of her two best friends, she has a daydream that Uehara proposes to her. Wearing a shiny white suit for some inexplicable reason.
8. Uehara the Man-brat v Uehara the Sweetie
I know I’ve already mentioned the ships, but Uehara gets a mention all of his own since the whole show revolves around his romance with Nao. Uehara is a real mixed bag. He can be so mean at times which we’re lead to believe is his way of trying to be mature and serious. But just when you start to think he’s a real jerk and Nao would be better off without him, he goes and does something super sweet like fill the fridge with milk pudding because he thought she’d like it, or go along with a crazy scheme of hers to make her happy.
9. The outfits
This image definitely gives the wrong impression, because Nao wears some pretty cute (normal) clothes throughout the two seasons. But the ‘uniform’ she wears at the gift shop she starts working at in Season 2 is next level.
10. The running
One of my favourite things to watch is all the love interests, but especially Uehara, running to Nao. Here, Uehara has just found out it’s Nao’s birthday and he’s running around Tokyo to buy her a present before the night is over. My favourite ‘running episode’ is probably the Christmas episode. Nao faints at home from a fever (but luckily Daichi was on hand to catch her). He then storms off to find Uehara, scolds him for not caring enough about Nao when she’s sick and lonely, and Uehara, dressed in a Santa costume, grabs a cake and runs all the way home to Nao. *swoon*
Are you a fan of Good Morning Call? Or is there another Japanese drama on Netflix that you recommend? Leave us a comment below!