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NHK’s morning TV dramas have left a stamp on Japan since 1961

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Every day except Sunday, when I was in primary school, I was glued to each "asadora" morning drama episode of the "renzoku TV shosetsu" serial dramas that the Japan Broadcasting Corp. (NHK) began airing in 1961.

I ceased paying attention to the show decades ago, yet it's still a frequent conversation topic today at home and work.

The asadora currently being aired is the 100th in the series.

What's the secret of its popularity and extraordinary longevity?

"The programs have shaped Japanese perceptions of family and work," noted Wakako Tako, 46, a drama critic and the author of "Taisetsu na Koto wa Minna Asadora ga Oshiete Kureta" (Asadora have taught me every important thing I should know).

"The quality is a........

© The Asahi Shimbun