The five main characters have been friends on Twitter for a while, one day Ichihara Kaoru suggests that they meet face to face. It sounds easy but after meeting each other, the hidden emotions and lies surface and each has to deal with it alongside the difficulties of their own everyday lives.
A lot of people say it has parallels with last year's "Last Friends", and I can totally see how that comparison is being made; five young people played by five hot actors (Eita and Ueno Juri included!) dealing with issues of friendship, love, and making it in the world. A lot of "heavy issues" are covered and *extremely* complicated relationship polygons are formed.
Though I had mixed feelings about "Last Friends", I dove into this one. In the beginning I found myself a little annoyed; the direction, transitions and music from the Ting Tings made me wonder just how hard this show was trying to be hip, and whether it would end up that shallow.
When I watched "Last Friends", I would do it in spurts. I couldn't do this with "Sunao"... A the point I think that many say the story dragged along, I thought that SO MUCH happened in every episode I found myself overwhelmed. I had to quit and reflect on every episode. While the acting was generally good (save for how painful it was to watch Jae-Joong) and the stories were certainly riveting, I found myself not exactly satisfied. For some reason, I wasn't as blown away as Ueno's acting in this show -- I wonder if that's because she's not playing an "alternative" character like she usually does? And I can't really place my finger on why that is right now, but it's something I'll definitely think about...
While I didn't love the ending, I didn't hate it, either. It was a fun watch, and I found myself taken for a ride even though I'd encountered some spoilers before I watched the show. And in the end, I would say that it probably was shallow, but overall, I enjoyed it.
I think what I loved most about this series was seeing the fantastic aerial shots of Tokyo every episode, plus the footage of the familiar sights around Shibuya. Nostalgia for me.
Was glad they kept the Twitter element to a minimum. It would've been really lame if they overplayed that.
With its great cast, this series started out most excellent. 5-star till about midway, when it began to drag under the strain of eleven episodes of awkward relationships and ultimately came to a grinding halt in the "finale". It seemed like the last episode would never end. Despite this, still a fine work of drama with simple, everyday dialogue throughout.
And once again Eita could not have Ueno! Will he ever get another opportunity? Maybe next time he'll have to change his look a bit more. A little too much like Takeru here.
They gave this the very appropriate title 素直になれなくて which really literally just means "can't be straight-forward" or "can't be honest". The way it gets translated depends on the circumstances it is referring to. So here they called it "Hard To Say I Love You", but it could refer to anything. You could translate it the opposite, "Hard To Say I Hate You", if it were the case.
Both series are about a group of people who meet 'by chance' and end up building a strong friendship between them.
Also, characters in both series hide some dark things in their life and the plot touches on topics such as homosexuality or suicide.