A great way to learn Japanese is to combine as many skills together as possible. For example, I like to try to find a manga, that then becomes a television show, so that I can practice reading and then listening. Doing so is becoming easier with the proliferation of manga that are becoming series.
One of my favourite manga series to become a television series is “Shinya Shokudo”. The series takes place in the Golden-Gai district of Tokyo. What sets it apart from your usual robot-fighting superhero manga, or high school baseball manga, is the fact that the stories focus on people on the periphery of Japanese society: the yakuza member, the stripper, the hard-boiled cop…etc. The series was run in Japan a few years ago, so watching/acquiring the videos is possible. Now, courtesy of the fine people at the Vancouver Public Library, you can also borrow the manga. Check out the intro sequence to the live action drama below.