Skyhigh (TV Series)(2003-2004)
Skyhigh is a live-action, supernatural Japanese television drama series, starring actress and model, Yumiko Shaku. It aired in Japan, first run, from 2003 to 2004, and was popular enough to spawn the 2003 feature film of the same name (produced while the series was still in production and starring the same actress). Both are based on the Japanese manga, Skyhigh. Shaku stars as Izuko, the Guardian of the Gate to the afterlife.
The basic premise of the television series is somewhat similar in concept to the American series, Ghost Whisperer, in which the protagonist must use her powers to guide the dead on their journey to the afterlife by helping them determine the meaning or circumstance of their death. However, in Izuko's case, no matter how hard she tries, her guidance does not always result in a happy ending.
The Gate of Rancor is where people who had died of unexpected accidents or were murdered return to visit as spirits. The victims who had suffered violent deaths are approached by Izuko, a beautiful gatekeeper, to make the ultimate choice.
Unlike deaths due to illness or old age that come after one had lived his or her life fully, people who had died of unexpected accidents or who were murdered become spirits and visit the Gate of Rancor. A beautiful gatekeeper Izuko awaits the spirits and approaches the victims to choose between three options.
(1) Accept their death, go to heaven and resurrect,
(2) Refuse to accept their death and wander through this world, or
(3) Curse a person of this world to death and go to hell.
Victims who are unable to make up their minds return to this world. They begin seeing things they could not see while they were alive, such a love, hatred, change of people's hearts. They witness the other side of their lives they were unaware of while they lived. And what sort of decisions will they make after going through such an experience?
Beyond their ultimate decision lies the true salvation of their souls! "Sky High" is a drama that asks the viewers, through dead persons' perspectives, what the value of life really is.
Sky High premiered on the Japanese television network, TV-Asahi, on January 17, 2003. The series starred popular Japanese actress and supermodel Yumiko Shaku, also known internationally for her starring role as action heroine JXSDF Lt. Akane Yashiro in two subsequent Godzilla movies, Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla (2002) and Godzilla: Tokyo S.O.S. (2003). Sky High Season 1 (Series 1) ran for ten episodes, ending with a three-part thriller featuring special guest star Yamada Maiko.
Season 2 (marketed as Sky High 2) premiered on TV-Asahi on Friday, January 16, 2004, following the theatrical release of the big budget motion picture Sky High—a prequel to the TV series, and also starring Yumiko Shaku in a big screen reprise of her TV series role. The second TV season of Sky High picks up on a number of elements from the big screen venture, including a darker, edgier look to Shaku's costuming in contrast to the softer, more colorful look of the first season. The ninth episode of Season 2, titled "Fate," served as the series finale. - Wiki
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