by BrightestStar & Old_Anime_Lady, October 19, 2020

It took me a long time to get ready to write this tribute.  I am tired of writing them. This month had so many deaths to remember and talk about - 3 of which were suicides.

Actor Umeno Yasukiyo dies of old age (TH)
Actress Ashina Sei passes away from an apparent suicide (TH) (suicide)
Talent Kishibe Shiro dead at 71 (TH)
Actress Takeuchi Yuko passes away at 40 (TH)(suicide)
Actor Saito Yosuke has passed away (NT2099)
Takashi Fujiki 80, Japanese actor  (Eng wiki)(Suicide)
Moriya Hiroshi, Japanese singer, talent, former director of HoriPro Production (JWiki) 

All of these people were talented entertainers and prominent people in Japan's entertainment industry. The hole left behind by their absence can never be filled. Those that chose to shorten their own lives remind us they are just humans, putting on a face to make us feel emotions in a scripted story. Life is not as neat nor as clean as perceived on either the big or small screen. Our thoughts go out to those they left behind.

source of the following pictures is
remembering 4 of those we have lost in 2020 (to suicide)

So here is our tribute/Fan guide for  Takeuchi Yuko

I have watched many of the titles she has appeared in Strawberry Night, Strawberry Night: After the Invisible Rain - Special, Strawberry Night(2013), The Inerasable, Creepy, The Travelling Cat Chronicles,  Lunch Queen, Pride, Natsu no Koi wa Nijiiro ni Kagayaku,  and Strawberry Night (2012).

She was a welcome familiar face to every drama I watched the epitome of a strong woman character with dignity and grace.  It saddens me to think there will be nothing new from her.  While there is much speculation, we will never know what she was going through. Out of respect for the loved ones she left behind I will refuse to guess but only offer my thoughts and feelings for them.

BrightestStar - She definitely was a familiar face I looked forward to watching. I may not have liked all her dramas, nor all the characters she played, but I have loved her performance. I have seen her in dramas for as long as I have been in dramaland, and that's for 13 years and still counting. The fact she is not in our world anymore is still unbelievable in my mind. Below I have mentioned some highlights in her career that stood out for me. What generally stands out is the capability of building chemistry with her costars, no matter their age and personality. 

Stage Name: Yuko Takeuchi 
Native name:竹内結子

  • Born: April 1, 1980
  • Died: September 27, 2020
  • Birthplace: Urawa City, Saitama Prefecture (currently Minami Ward, Saitama City ) 
  • Height: 164 cm
  • Blood Type: A
  • Talent AgencyStardust
  • Official Page:


She was scouted by Start dust in Harajuku during the spring break right after graduating from Middle school and stayed with the company for the entirety of her career. Each character she played showed part of who she is, yet had a distinguished personality. 

In 1995 (Heisei 7), she made her debut in a commercial for the Ministry of Finance.

In 1996, her actress debut was in Shin Mokuyou no Kaidan: Cyborg where she appeared as a vivacious heroine schoolgirl (Fuji TV).

After that, she appeared in numerous dramas and movies. At the end of the trendy drama era, the actress became one of the few talented people in the era of unfavorable actresses.

BrightestStar - The following are a number of dramas Takeuchi lead, and stood out one way or another, at least in my eyes. 

Mukodono (2001)

This drama was one of the first dramas I've seen her, co-starting with TOKIO's vocalist Nagase Tomoya. The drama was about a cool star that hides his clumsy personality and his life after marrying into a family while keeping it secret from the media. At the time, Takeuchi was a rising star. Her character was so sweet, and a strong backbone when needed.

Lunch Queen (2002)

A popular drama that introduced us to many of today's leading stars. Takeuchi was at the heart of it, and oh man does she constantly makes us hungry here. She had distinct chemistry and relationship with each of the cast/characters. Her look here was more tomboyish than other characters she played.

Pride (2004)

Another popular drama, with Johnny star Kimura Takuya. Whatever one may feel about this drama, and the opinions vastly diverse, one cannot deny the chemistry the main couple shared. It could be a long conversation and moments of silence, their scenes together were addictive. She is very elegant here, with a down to earth style.

Fukigen na Gene (2005)

A less known one, but in my opinion, she had even greater chemistry with leading man Uchino Seiyou. This drama is about the exploration of love and desire, told from the point of view of scientists. You can tell how great the chemistry is when I was told between wanting her to cut him completely from her life and being addicted to their scenes together. Her character here is clumsy, full of ideas and beliefs. 

Snowy Love Fall in Spring (2005)

Unlike what the title suggests, this movie is more about the destructive nature of love rather than the constructive. It wasn't the first time Takeuchi shares the screen with Tsumabuki Satoshi, but their dynamic was definitely different. Her character here is more on the soft, yielding side.

Strawberry Night (2012)

A very popular drama from her career, it has been a long time since I watched it. This drama is distinguished due to having her a strong, driven, traumatized female leading character.  It takes on darker themes and uses interesting imagery to give you a sense of the horror experienced by victims.

Dandarin Rodo Kijun Kantokukan (2013)

A not much-talked-about drama, yet an important one. I learned a lot about Japanese work culture here. Though initially appearing cold and robotic, you understand her character more as the episodes go by, and totally understand why she is presented in this manner. Dandarin kept a space in my heart for it.

In 2018, Hulu and HBO played the female version of Sherlock Holmes in Asia's first international co-produced drama " Miss Sherlock  ", distributed on Hulu and broadcast on HBO in 19 countries around the world.

Those are just a few titles of her work to showcase her talent. She has offered much more, and I was looking forward to what more she had to offer. 

Personal Life

In June 2005, she married Nakamura Shido, who co-starred in the movie "Be with You ". She also announced that she was pregnant and gave birth to their first baby boy in November of the same year (divorced in February 2008. Custody to Takeuchi).

On February 27, 2019 (Heisei 31), she remarried with Taiki Nakabayashi, a junior of her agency.

On August 28, 2019 (the first year of Reiwa), it was found out that she was pregnant with her second child. She gave birth to a boy at the end of January the following year.

In 2020 (Reiwa 2) September 27, 2 o'clock, her husband found that she had hanged herself in her home in the bedroom (in the closet), at 40 years of age. No suicide note found

The following articles have more information

Actress Takeuchi Yuko passes away at 40 (TH)
Kimura Tae wrote touching words on Instagram, many believe to be about actress Takeuchi Yuko
More details revealed on the hours before Takeuchi Yuko’s death
Fans worry for Imoto Ayako after the death of Takeuchi Yuko    


(Copied from Japanese Wiki)

BrightestStar - Dramaland in Japan will definitely look different from now on. But more than that, those were humans who lost their lives. They have loved ones who are mourning their loss. Maybe we, the fans, should do our part by remembering that, and not hold them up to unreachable standards and criticize their every move. I hope fans in Japan realize that and do their part as well.

Our hearts go out to her family that must be traumatized by this even, her little child that is in need of her the most right now, and to her and the suffering, she was going through. May she rest in peace.

 I hope I do not have to write any more of these this year.  Like on all the others I will reiterate. Please seek help if you are having suicidal thoughts.