HBO Max’s Tokyo Vice Review: An American Crime Reporter In Underworld

Many people like a good crime drama on television (see, for example, Law & Order: SVU, 2021's Mare of Easttown, and numerous more). Shortly, however, television viewers will be treated to a completely new one set in the Tokyo underworld of the 1990s: Tokyo Vice. A master of the genre, Michael Mann is directing the pilot episode (Heat).

JT Rogers, the Tony Award-winning writer and Emmy-nominated TV movie director of Oslo, has adapted it for television into a 10-episode miniseries based on the experiences of a journalist.

You can learn all about Tokyo Vice right here.

What Is The Release Schedule of Tokyo Vice?

Tokyo Vice Season 1
Tokyo Vice Season 1

On April 14, HBO Max will broadcast the next two episodes of Tokyo Vice, following the release of the show's first three episodes on April 7. Every week, two episodes will be released.

Tokyo Vice fans in the United Kingdom will be pleased to learn that the crime drama will be available to stream on Starzplay starting on May 15th, according to a report by Variety. In addition, the BBC has acquired the rights to the series, which will air on the network later this year, according to plans.

Tokyo Vice Review

Tokyo Vice Season 1

Tokyo Vice Season 1

Tokyo Vice is based on the non-fiction book Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter on the Police Beat by American writer Jake Adelstein. HBO Max stresses that the series is “loosely based on” Adelstein's books and that the show is “not a direct adaptation.” The official summary is as follows:

Adelstein's daily plunge into the neon-soaked underworld of Tokyo in the late '90s, when nothing and no one is exactly what or who they appear, is captured in the criminal drama series filmed on location in Tokyo.

The following are the plot summaries for the first five episodes:

Tokyo Vice episode 1: “The Test.”

After being hired as Meicho Shumbun's first American crime reporter, Jake Adelstein is rapidly charged with reporting two cases that appear to be unrelated at first, but he soon realizes that tracing the links might mean the difference between life and death.

Tokyo Vice episode 2: “Kishi Kaisei.”

As criminal leader Tozawa erratically straddles the line between areas, his competitor Chihara-Kai scrambles to recover debts owed to the organization. Samantha defends another hostess, and Jake is witness to a clash that changes the course of the story completely.

Tokyo Vice episode 3: “Read the Air.”

Jake's perseverance pays off when he obtains an exclusive from Detective Katagiri – but in the process, he attracts the attention of someone else who is less than ideal. Meanwhile, Samantha strikes up a conversation with a new client, and Sato must decide whether to use words or fists.

Tokyo Vice episode 4: “I Want It That Way.”

“Samantha's past catches up with her as she progresses toward the future. Jake makes a significant breakthrough in linking the cases with Emi, Tin-Tin, and Trendy's assistance and comes face to face with the leader of Chihari-Kai, who requests a favor from Jake.”

Tokyo Vice Episode 5: “Everybody Pays”

“In exchange for his assistance in revealing the mole in Chihara-Kai, Jake must consider the dangers of accepting a favor from Ishida in return. Samantha attempts to resolve her Matsuo-related issue. Sato's recruiting comes to a close with a life-changing lesson in loyalty.”

What Actors and Actresses Are Featured in the Tokyo Vice Cast?

Tokyo Vice Season 1
Tokyo Vice Season 1

The cast of Tokyo Vice will consist of a mixture of American and Japanese actors, with Ansel Elgort and Ken Watanabe serving as the show's leads.

Jake Adelstein will be played by Ansel Elgort, cast in the series. Ansel Elgort is most recognized for his performance in the Best Picture candidate West Side Story. Still, he is also renowned for his appearances in Baby Driver, The Fault in Our Stars, and the Divergent trilogy.

Actor Ken Watanabe (The Last Samurai) is nominated for an Academy Award for his work in the film. In the series, Ken Watanabe appears as Hiroto Katagiri, a member of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department, as the other main character. He has also acted in major films like Inception, Godzilla, Batman Begins, Memoirs of a Geisha, etc.

Rinko Kikuchi, nominated for an Academy Award, is also a member of the Tokyo Vice ensemble. For her performance in the 2006 film Babel, Kikuchi was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

Since then, she's been in movies such as The Brothers Bloom, Pacific Rim, and Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter, and television shows such as Westworld and Invasion, among others. Kikuchi will play eimi in the upcoming film Tokyo Vice.

Rachel Keller (Fargo, Legion) portrays Samantha, Ella Rumpf (Raw, Succession) portrays Polina, Hideaki Ito (Memoirs of a Murderer) portrays Jin Miyamoto, and Shô Kasamatsu (My Girlfriend is a Serial Killer) portrays Sato. Tomohisa Yamashita (Code Blue) portrays Akira. Other members of the cast include Hideaki Ito (Mem

Tokyo Vice Trailer

HBO Max has released the trailer for Tokyo Vice. It provides an exciting glimpse into the excitement, brutality, and danger that Jake Adelstein will experience while covering the struggle between the Tokyo Police and the Yakuza.

Where to Watch Tokyo Vice

When Tokyo Vice comes on HBO Max on April 7, it will be the first and only place to see it. As a result, it will only be available to HBO Max members in areas where the streaming service is offered. The HBO Max subscription service is available either as a stand-alone service or as an add-on to other services such as Hulu with Live TV or YouTube TV.