Polina has always been Samantha’s best friend. She supports his efforts and shows that she cares about his well-being, especially when he’s not showing up to work at the club. At one point, he even looked after Jack when Sam (as a client) ghosted him.
She may be a kind and loving person, but so far, she hasn’t done anything in the series that could be considered brave. In fact, the final events of her story show how she fell victim to a predatory men’s club in town, which led to her mysterious disappearance.
9 trendy tin and tin
Succeeding in Japan’s competitive newspaper industry isn’t easy, and the series shows that it’s nearly impossible for foreigners. So Jake should thank his trusted friends and co-workers Trendy and Tin Tin for making the protagonist’s challenging job easier.
Not only did they provide much-needed comic relief, but they gave up everything that helped Jack investigate their story. Given how risky Jake’s items are, and how scary his big boss is when someone makes a mistake, it might take some ingenuity and guts.
8 Miyamoto Shin
Miyamoto is one of the most hated cops at the local station because he doesn’t mind indirectly helping bring harmful drugs into the country as long as he gets a share of the profits. His tense conversation with Tozawa underscores his cowardice, as instead of sticking to the deal and backing out of the deal, the Yakuza boss makes fun of him for doing one last thing for the gang.
If there’s one thing that inspires a potentially brave side, it’s his horrified attempt to break into the evidence room to steal information for Tozawa. However, it is important to note that he was only motivated by fear of reprisals from violent gang leaders.
Sato is a villain-turned-friend who has changed and grown a lot over the course of the series. No longer a junior in the yakuza, Sato won Ishida’s favor by fearlessly defending him in a brutal assassination attempt.
That said, Sato’s other acts of bravery tend to be more for self-preservation. Fans may remember how he killed Sam’s stalker because he was angry at him for threatening to expose him to his oyabun. There’s also an revealing scene where he’s afraid to execute the traitor and force the thug to jump off the building for Sato.
6 Ishida Ren
As the interim leader of Chihara-Kai, Ishida has no choice but to be brave, especially when their rival gangs approach them. Compared to Tozawa, Ishida takes a more traditional approach, which often means staying away from violence that he considers immoral.
He has no problem threatening local businessmen and killing traitors, but will hesitate to break the rules of the larger gang. While he seems fearless in front of his subordinates, Tozawa understands that he has limitations and that rival bosses are more than willing to take advantage of them.
5 Maruyama Emi
From the moment she was introduced, fans probably knew that Maruyama wasn’t Jack’s fault. His immediate supervisor at Meicho knows the industry better than he does and knows exactly what he can and cannot do in his career.
Maruyama strives to make a difference in a male-dominated field by pursuing stories he knows his peers won’t pay too much attention to. She works brilliantly within the rules to avoid criticism, allowing her to highlight news that is deemed controversial. Viewers may recall her publishing a story about the country’s neglected and murdered women, a bold criticism of Japan’s justice system and police.
4 Samantha Goalkeeper
Samantha is a badass who goes to great lengths to build a life for herself in Tokyo. Even before fans knew of her heartbreaking backstory, she was considered brave, as long as she didn’t shy away from intimidating characters like Sato.
After learning how to escape from her devoutly religious family and embrace a new life of independence and autonomy, she is undeniably brave. However, it’s worth noting (as Sato tells her during the heated argument) that she tends to use other people, like her gangster boyfriend, to do dirty work for her. Then, he was too cowardly to face the dangerous and sometimes bloody consequences of these actions.
3 Tozawa Shinzo
The bravest characters in miniseries are not necessarily good people, and Tozawa is a perfect example. Yakuza’s gang leader only gets bolder, possibly due to a mysterious illness that makes him feel like he has nothing to lose.
Tozawa has repeatedly broken tradition, violated the status quo and expanded the power of the group, even at the expense of his own reputation. Of course, in the face of the attempted assassination, the underworld boss had no choice but to obey the leader’s orders to apologize to Ishida, emphasizing that his bravery knew the limit.
two Jack Adelstein
This limited series follows Jack’s experience as a journalist in Japan, which certainly wasn’t easy for him. Fans may remember him studying hard for the Ming Dynasty entrance exam and having to persevere in an industry where locals often look down on him.
He’s not afraid to follow directions in dangerous places, talking (sometimes disrespectfully) with powerful people like Sato and Tozawa, hoping to get information for his articles. Jack often finds himself on the borderline between brave and reckless, and despite his good intentions, he sometimes goes in the wrong direction. A case in point is how he went against Katagiri’s advice and brutally asked Miyamoto about Tozawa’s plane, a decision that ultimately sabotaged the entire investigation.
A sort of Hiroto Katagic
Katagiri is portrayed as a tough cop who has worked for years to understand organized crime in Japan. He bravely plays a dangerous game as a mediator between two rival gangs in Tokyo, and his role is complicated by Tozawa’s reckless actions.
The officer boldly chose to do his job, even as his colleagues and superiors pressured him to ignore gang-related violence. He understands that someone has to stop the gangsters and does everything in his power to do it, even if it’s impossible.
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Polina has acted as Samantha’s reliable best friend. She supports her endeavors and shows that she’s concerned about her wellbeing, especially when she doesn’t show up for work in the club. At one point, she even takes care of Jake when Sam ghosts him (as a client).
She may be a good and caring person, but she hasn’t done anything in the series so far that could be considered courageous. In fact, the latest events in her storyline highlight how she has become victimized by a predatory men’s club in the city, which has led to her mysterious disappearance.
9 Trendy & Tin Tin
It’s not easy to succeed in Japan’s cutthroat newspaper industry, and the series implies that for foreigners, it’s almost impossible. This is why Jake should be thankful that he has his trusty work friends and sidekicks, Trendy and Tin Tin, as they help make the challenging job easier for the protagonist.
Not only do they provide some much-needed comic relief, but they also willingly drop whatever they’re doing to help Jake research for his stories. That may require a bit of intelligence and bravery, considering how risky Jake’s articles are and how scary their big boss can be when anyone makes mistakes.
8 Jin Miyamoto
Miyamoto is one of the dirtiest cops in the local station, as he doesn’t care that he’s indirectly helping bring damaging drugs into the country, as long as he gets his cut of the profit. A tense conversation he has with Tozawa highlights his cowardice, as instead of following through and getting out of their deal, he’s intimidated by the Yakuza boss and is strong-armed into doing one last thing for the gang.
If there’s anything that highlights a potential brave side, it’s his panicked attempt at breaking into the evidence room to steal information for Tozawa. It’s important to note that’s only motivated by his fear of retaliation from the violent gang leader, though.
Sato is a villain-turned-friend who has changed and grown a lot over the course of the series. No longer a low-level Yakuza member, Sato has gained Ishida’s favor by fearlessly defending him during a brutal assassination attempt.
That said, Sato’s other courageous actions are often more for self-preservation than anything else. Fans may recall how he murders Sam’s stalker when he gets angry about his threats to expose him to his oyabun. There’s also a telling scene where he’s terrified of executing a traitor, which forces the gang member to jump off of the building for Sato.
6 Hitoshi Ishida
As the temporary leader of the Chihara-Kai, Ishida has no choice but to be brave, especially with their rival gang closing in on them. Ishida embraces more traditional methods compared to Tozawa, which can often mean he shies away from what he considers to be unethical violence.
He has no problem threatening local shopkeepers and killing traitors, but would hesitate to go against established rules by the bigger Yakuza organization. While he may seem fearless in front of his subordinates, Tozawa understands that he has limitations, and the rival boss is more than willing to take advantage of those.
5 Emi Maruyama
From the moment she’s introduced, fans could probably tell that Maruyama isn’t someone Jake should mess with. His immediate supervisor in the Meicho understands the industry much better than he does and knows exactly what she can and cannot do in her profession.
Maruyama strives to make a difference in the male-dominated field by chasing stories she knows wouldn’t get much attention from her colleagues. She brilliantly works within the rules to avoid criticism, which allows her to highlight news that would be considered controversial. Viewers may remember how she publishes a story about women being ignored and murdered in the country, which is a bold criticism of the justice system and police officers in Japan.
4 Samantha Porter
Samantha is a badass who has done her best to carve a life for herself in Tokyo. Even before fans knew about her heartbreaking backstory, she was already seen as courageous, if only for the way she doesn’t shy away from intimidating characters like Sato.
It has become impossible to deny that she’s brave after learning about the way she ran away from her deeply religious family to embrace a new life of independence and autonomy. However, it’s worth pointing out that (just as Sato tells her in a heated argument), she tends to use other people like her Yakuza boyfriend to do the dirty work for her. She is then too cowardly to face the dangerous and sometimes bloody consequences of those actions.
3 Shinzo Tozawa
The bravest characters in the miniseries don’t always have to be good people, and Tozawa is the perfect example of that. The Yakuza gang leader is only becoming more brazen, likely due to the mysterious illness that is making him feel like he has nothing to lose.
Tozawa is repeatedly breaking traditions and going against the status quo to expand his group’s power, even at the expense of his own reputation. Of course, when confronted about his failed assassination attempt, the Yakuza boss has no choice but to follow his leader’s order to beg for forgiveness from Ishida, which emphasizes how his fearlessness does have its limits.
2 Jake Adelstein
The limited series is centered on Jake’s experiences as a reporter in Japan, and it certainly hasn’t been easy for him. Fans may remember how hard he studies for the exam to get into the Meicho, and he’s had to continue to persevere in the industry where the locals often look down on him.
He’s unafraid of chasing leads in dangerous places, speaking with (and sometimes disrespecting) powerful people like Sato and Tozawa in the hopes of getting information for his articles. Jake is often toeing the line between bravery and recklessness, and despite his good intentions, he will sometimes fall on the wrong side. A good example of this is how he goes against Katagiri’s advice by brazenly going to Miyamoto about Tozawa’s plane, which is a decision that ends up ruining an entire investigation.
1 Hiroto Katagiri
Katagiri is depicted as a hardened police officer who has spent years working on understanding organized crime in Japan. He’s courageously playing a dangerous game by serving as a sort of mediator between the two rival gangs in Tokyo, with his role becoming even more complicated thanks to Tozawa’s reckless moves.
The officer bravely chooses to do his job right, even when his colleagues and superiors pressure him to ignore gang-related violence. He understands that someone has to keep the Yakuza in check, and he does his best to do just that despite facing impossible odds.
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