Sugisaki Hana and Wakaba Tatsuya’s Sizzling Chemistry in Unmet | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Sugisaki Hana and Wakaba Tatsuya’s Sizzling Chemistry in Unmet

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Wakaba Tatsuya, who has been in romantic news, and Sugisaki Hana, who starred together for the fourth time in Unmet, had their personal lives brought into the spotlight.

The monthly drama series Unmet: A Neurosurgeon’s Diary, starring actress Sugisaki Hana, aired on Fuji TV. Upon its debut, the hashtag #Unmet trended worldwide on X (formerly Twitter), claiming the top spot. Additionally, during the week following the first episode’s broadcast, the free catch-up streaming’ surpassed 2 million views, earning the show the top spot on the TVer comprehensive ranking. It has become the focal point of the spring drama season. 

This drama is about a young talented brain surgeon named Miyabi Kawanai, who had a promising future, but had an accident a year and a half ago and suffered brain damage. As a result, she lost her memories of the past two years and forgets everything that happens each day by the next day. Her ex-fiancé and brain surgeon, Yuji Mitsubei, who returned from America, appears before Miyabi..

“The drama is based on a manga of the same name by Yuzuru Kojika, a former brain surgeon. While there were offers from other networks to adapt it, they all focused on the original storyline with Dr. Mitsubei, a genius brain surgeon who returned from America, as the main character. In contrast, this project revolves around Miyabi, who bravely takes new steps despite concerns and opposition from those around her.


Furthermore, Miyabi’s inaccessible memories hold a significant hospital-related secret, adding an intriguing mystery element. This aspect, along with the theme that ‘a brain surgeon sees not just the patient’s brain but their life,’ makes this adaptation equally compelling if not more so than the original.”  (production company producer)

The highlight of this drama is undoubtedly the thrilling interaction between Sugisaki and Wakaba, who are collaborating for the fourth time. The intense performances of the two are sparking from the first episode.

“Actress Rena Akamine was rushed in as an emergency and diagnosed with a stroke during examination. Mitsubei instructed Miyabi to assist, but Nurse Chief Tsuhata (Michiko Kise) stopped her. However, Mitsubei argued, ‘We’re short-staffed, so we need all the help we can get,’ and insisted to Hospital Director Todo (Junpei Yasui), ‘Dr. Kawanai can perform surgery. Despite Miyabi apologizing and saying, ‘I can’t do surgery,’ Mitsubei’s words struck a chord with many viewers.” (director of a production company).

It happened on the hospital roof where a strong wind was blowing. He got up from the bench and said


“Do you think people with disabilities should just give up on life and merely exist?”


He stared strongly at Mitsubei, his hair messy. Mitsubei walked away. Miyabi couldn’t stop her tears from overflowing due to sadness. This scene, where Wakaba’s acting moved Sugisaki’s heart, is considered a memorable moment.


However, this wasn’t the first time Sugisaki couldn’t hold back tears in front of Wakaba. 

“In the movie Ichiko, starring Sugisaki and released in December last year, Sugisaki played Ichiko, a girl born without a registered residence who grew up in a harsh family environment but never gave up on surviving. In the beginning of the movie, Ichiko receives a proposal from Hasegawa (Wakaba), whom she spent three years with, and the scene where Ichiko tears up was not in the script. Sugisaki revealed, ‘Because Ichiko was born as an unregistered child, tears welled up from the overwhelming emotions.’” (The director mentioned earlier)

In this work, Sugisaki won the Japan Academy Award for Outstanding Leading Actress. Looking back, it was perhaps Wakaba Ryuya, her co-star for the fourth time in this work, who served as the key figure in unleashing Sugisaki Hana’s potential as an actress. This comes after her appearances in the 2020 morning drama Ochoyan (NHK), the 2023 Sugisaki Hana’s Filming Break (WOWOW), and the movie Ichiko.

“In this series, Wakaba, who isn’t usually very proactive about dramas, decided to accept the offer to appear after receiving it from Sugisaki, following the producer’s lead. Since last fall, the two have been involved in the overall structure and scriptwriting. They poured their passion into this project, not falling short of what they did in movies.

For Wakaba, who is collaborating with Sugisaki for the fourth time, ‘it’s always refreshing because we can always have interactions beyond the script.’ He added, ‘It doesn’t sound like just reciting lines; it sounds like words born from one’s own thoughts.’ He also mentioned, ‘He’s putting in a blood, sweat, and tears effort where no one can see. That’s why the morale on set is high, and I feel a sense of pride.’” (The aforementioned producer)

In the movie Ichiko, Sugisaki Hana showcased her acting skills, conveying a challenging life merely through her eyes and demeanor without words. In Unmet, her performance not only portrays the struggles of dealing with aftermath but also shines a beacon of hope for those battling with the consequences, their families, and healthcare professionals.

In the seventh episode aired on May 27th, there’s a scene where Miyabi and Mitsubei walk along a riverside path. Miyabi stops to admire freshly bloomed irises, but there is a lingering sadness in her eyes.

Miyabi said, “I feel happy when I can properly sense the changes in seasons, cityscapes, and other evolving things because it makes me realize that yesterday and today are connected.” 

“Dr. Mitsubei, may I rely on you?”

Mitsubei nods happily at Miyabi’s murmuring.

According to Josei Seven, the two’s passionate love affair has been revealed. Sugisaki Hana and Wakaba Ryuya now seem to be indispensable figures in both public and private aspects of each other’s lives. As the drama moves towards its climax, things are finally starting to unfold.

  • Text Ukon Shima (Broadcaster, Video Producer)

    He is involved in program production in a wide range of genres, including variety, news, and sports programs. He has also planned and published many books on female TV announcers, idols, and the TV industry. While working on documentary programs, he became interested in history and recently published "Ieyasu was dead in Sekigahara" (Takeshobo Shinsho). She has also published the e-book series "Ibun chakurezuregusa" (Different Stories about Craftsmen).

  • PHOTO Kotaro Okada

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