The much-talked-about drama, which is considered to be a major hit for the July season, is finally starting to show its true potential.
The third episode of “VIVANT” (TBS), a Sunday drama series starring Masato Sakai (49), was broadcast and recorded an average household rating of 13.8% (figures are for the Kanto region, according to Video Research). The original story was directed and written by Katsuo Fukuzawa, who has worked on the “Hanzawa Naoki” series and “Shitamachi Rocket” series, and the cast includes Hiroshi Abe (59), Koji Yakusho (67), Fumi Nikaido (28), Kento Hayashi (32), and Ryo Ryusei (30), all of whom are starring in the show. The show has been the talk of the town since before it began airing, and has attracted high expectations. A person from a key station said, “The cast and crew are all gorgeous.
The cast and crew are all gorgeous, and the show was shot on location in Mongolia, making it a blockbuster that TBS is putting the station’s prestige on the line for the biggest priority this year. As the production cost is said to be 100 million yen per episode, the expectations of the executives and others involved are of course high, and they are so bullish that a hit is a foregone conclusion.
Program production budgets are said to be strained these days. Even though expectations are high, what is the underlying reason for such a bullish stance? A major advertising agency official asked, “TBS has been running a real estate business and other businesses.
TBS has been quick to adopt diversified management, such as real estate management, but now it is putting more effort into it. It is said that Tokyo Electron, which develops, manufactures, and sells semiconductor manufacturing equipment, has been enriching its pocketbook, and even if it invests a large budget for this film, it can expect to earn enough income from DVD sales and other secondary uses, which explains why it invested such a large amount of money.
The film began airing on the strength of its high reputation. However, the first episode’s rating of 11.5% and the second episode’s 11.9% were contrary to the expectations of the audience, and negative words such as “sluggish” and “sluggish” were already heard. A key station insider explained the results.
A key station insider explained the results: “This drama took the bold step of not revealing any details about the storyline or the roles of the characters before the start of the broadcast. This is an unorthodox approach that dares not stir viewers’ interest. Despite the disadvantage of the first broadcast being in the middle of a three-day holiday weekend, the program recorded a certain viewer rating. In fact, the numbers have been steadily rising since then. Therefore, there is no need to be pessimistic at all, but rather, there is only room for growth in the future.
Indeed, the third episode saw a significant increase of 1.9% from the previous episode, and the program’s highest viewer rating was also renewed. A writer for a TV magazine says that there is more evidence that the show is sure to be a hit.
The total number of views for the first episode on free streaming services such as TVer and TBS FREE reached approximately 4 million (calculated by Video Research), the highest ever for a drama on the station. Of course, the drama is still in its early stages and the number of views may fluctuate in the future, but considering the current viewer ratings, we can expect the number of views to continue to rise, and there is no cause for concern.
Expectations for “VIVANT” continue to grow, and the future development of the drama will be the focus of even more attention.
PHOTO： Takeo Yui