So recently, under very short notice, D-addicts closed its torrent section for undisclosed personal reasons. A lot of people miss streaming sites like mysoju and dramacrazy, but trust me, those sites (and the sites that have taken their place) wouldn’t have existed without D-addicts. Arguably the largest (and I think oldest) public domain for dramas and variety shows, D-addicts plays a large part in keeping the j-drama community alive. Subbers can keep uploading subtitles, the discussion forums are still open, and we still have the ever reliable Dramawiki, but undeniably D-addicts won’t be the same. It’s not like there aren’t other places to get raws, but none of them are quite as extensive and easy to access as D-addicts was, so there’s a mad scramble right now to figure out what to do next.
Though the future of D-addicts is up in the air (a lot of subbers have mentioned that they’ll probably quit uploading there), I haven’t exactly hit panic mode yet. If D-addicts does end up going under, I’ll definitely miss it as it’s a site I’ve frequented and depended upon since I started watching dramas seven years ago, but it does feel like j-dramas are becoming much easier to access like k-dramas became a few years ago, albeit much more slowly.
Ever since the success of the Itazura na Kiss~Love in Tokyo simulcast on Dramafever, there has been a slow trickle of j-dramas onto legal streaming platforms. Browsing through Dramafever’s catalog, they’ve picked up around twenty of Fuji’s dramas since then, most of which have been simulcasts.
Back in April, Crunchyroll also partnered with Fuji to stream twenty-one dramas (the list of dramas is here), and they’ve made good on their word, as only three of the dramas listed haven’t been added to their site yet. Crunchyroll has been simulcasting shows as well, like this season’s Nobunaga Concerto, Suteki na Taxi (listed as Time Taxi), and the upcoming second season of Itazura na Kiss.
Viki has managed to pick up a few shows, though they only have a handful of dramas that you can’t find on Dramafever or Crunchyroll like Doctors and W no Higeki, and there’s no guarantee that they’re fully subbed.
It is a little discouraging to see that it’s only Fuji TV that is willing to take the extra mile to reach international viewers, but it does look like NHK might be coming around as Dramafever has been streaming Ryomaden and and lined up other taigas like Yae no Sakura and Gou-hime for an unspecified airdate. NTV has been doling out crumbs as well; Crunchyroll has a tiny picking of their shows such as Rebound, Kaseifu no Mita, and 35 no Koukosei.
Of course, this leaves out stations like TV Tokyo, TV Asahi, TBS, and WOWOW, but considering the fact that I can now watch some j-dramas as they air without worrying about if they’ll be subbed all the way or not, something that was unthinkable a few years ago, I don’t think this is too bad.
Is a site like D-addicts still necessary? Right now, 100% yes, and I think drama fans will have a rough few months before we figure out what to do, but in two or three years from now, who knows? I do know that I am extremely grateful to all of those people that have contributed to maintaining D-addicts over the years, from uploaders to subbers, administrators, and moderators. Despite all the whining of impatient fans, site crashes, legal problems, and the demands of their own lives, they stuck it out because they really wanted to give back to the community and bring in new fans, even if they didn’t receive anything in return. As a fan, all I can say is thank you as D-addicts has truly been an indispensable part of my drama watching experience.