"His job is to protect Japanese citizens. He is also a man with a secret side, executing top secret duties: Diplomat Kuroda Kousaku."
Thus begins Diplomat Kuroda Kousaku
, a J-Drama series about a troubleshooter for the Counterterrorism Department of the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a very much Stale Beer
series with very little gunplay and lots of political manuvering, mixing handling the case of the week and a Myth Arc encompassing a former colleague on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge
for his wife's death in an embassy siege...
- Almighty Janitor: What John's covers end up being (driver for a mafia boss, bartender/waiter...)
- Awesomeness by Analysis: Rikako is a genius when it comes to maps. More than once, her ability to use/create a map comes in handy; at the end of the series, she's planning stakeout and containment positions for Niita.
- Badass Longcoat: Kuroda often wears one, adding to the spy drama feel.
- Beleaguered Bureaucrat: What most of the staff of the Central America & Caribbean Section of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs are.
- Conspicuous Trenchcoat: The Public Security agents and cops. Also Kuroda.
- Cunning Linguist: Kuroda is heard to speak Spanish, French, Russian, English and Japanese, which would be expected of an experienced diplomat. It's also mentioned that he speaks fluent Polish.
- Doing It for the Art: Location shooting in San Francisco, among other things, rather than attempted California doubling.
- Dojikko: Ogaki Rikako is a live action version of this.
- Driven to Suicide: Shimomura is first assumed to be this, after appearing drunk and depressed in San Francisco... and then it's revealed that he's Faking the Dead.
- Dr. Yoshino, who helps him fake his death, is later driven to suicide after being chased all over San Francisco by Kuroda when the latter caught him tossing his apartment.
- Faking the Dead: Former diplomat Shimomura, who goes to San Francisco to fake his death as the start of his Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
- Genre Savvy: John, Kuroda's CIA contact, agrees with his theory that Shimomura is alive and faked his death, on the grounds of "That'd be more interesting."
- Guile Hero: Kuroda; while he's competent enough with a weapon, he prefers to get things done using his smarts.
- The Handler: Ando, who's been giving Kuroda his assignments over the phone for years. It's not until Kuroda returns to Japan at the end of the pilot that they meet face to face.
- Hero Antagonist: Police Superintendant Niita and his team; Niita's a By-the-Book Cop whose only interest is solving the murders; because he and Kuroda are chasing after the same guy they end up butting heads against each other. It's not until the endgame where they put aside their differences to work together, in a case being shut out by Public Security.
- Reassigned to Antarctica: When he's getting too close to the truth, the Minister of Foreign Affairs plans to transfer Kuroda to Poland.
- Sharp-Dressed Man: Many of the male characters, justified as they are in positions where this is demanded by the dress code.
- Shown Their Work: The Japanese Embassy hostage crisis in the show's backstory is heavily inspired by the 1996 Japanese Embassy hostage crisis, only the real event took place in Peru.
- Surprisingly Good English: Kuroda's CIA contact, played by Lee Byung-Hung, speaks American English in all his scenes. Kuroda holds several conversations with him in accented but correct English.
- Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right: Kuroda's main modus operandi, helped in that he has diplomatic immunity overseas and he's usually a few steps of everyone else back in Japan.
- Towards the endgame, Kimoshita and Saionji display this, willing to sacrifice their careers to help Kuroda.
- "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: Summing up the fates of most of the cast; Shimomura's surviving accomplices are in jail, Rikako now works with Niita, Kimoshita and Saionji still have their jobs, Mikami is the new Foreign Affairs Minister and Kuroda is in France.