Mondays, 10.00 – 10.54 p.m. from 7 May 2012
Nishiakebono City is a town rather far away from Tokyo and with a population of 86,000 people. At the Akiyoshi family which has a long and distinguished history, the funeral service for its patriach Akiyoshi Yoshiaki is about to take place. The whole family is busy with the preparations. His widow is the stern-faced Otome. There are ill feelings between her and their somewhat awkward daughter Mari. Then, there is Mari’s husband, Akiyoshi Hiromasa, who is caught between the two women and totally under their control. The kind-hearted Hiromasa is loved by everyone, except his own mother-in-law. Because his marriage to Mari was a shotgun marriage, Otome has never acknowledged even after 19 years. On the seventh day of Yoshiaki’s death, Hiromasa is called to assemble for the family meeting. The attendees even include the chairman of the neighbourhood association, Tago Issetsu, and the mayor’s secretary, Handa Masato. At the meeting, Otome reveals that there was a notebook among his belongings. It contains writings about the dispute between the ruling and opposition parties over a garbage disposal facility construction issue and the traitors among the ruling party legislators. Hiromasa is also opposed to the construction of the garbage disposal facility and identifies with his father-in-law’s desire to create a fine city for the children of the future. If this goes on, political power will be lost and a garbage disposal facility will be built in this city. Pointing at Hiromasa, Otome declares that she will field him because of this, and forces him to run in the election. Hiromasa considers his own character – he does not welcome fights and finds happiness in an ordinary life – and initially flatly refuses. However, with the support of Mari and other people around them, he eventually resigns himself to the decision to run.
Watabe Atsuro as Akiyoshi Hiromasa
The mayor of Nishiakebono City. Because he married into the Akiyoshi family, he cannot oppose his mother-in law, and he gets stuck with running for the mayoral election following his father-in-law’s untimely death. He gets elected despite the unease with which other people regard him. He is a novice who has completely no interest in politics. He majored in philosophy in university and hoped to stay on for graduate school. However, he sacrificed this dream because he married his wife, Mari.
Ichige Yoshie as Akiyoshi Otome
Akiyoshi Mari’s mother. She appears to be quiet but she is more strong-willed than Mari. She feels a calling to protect the Akiyoshi name and safeguard her husband’s stronghold. She took a dim view of Hiromasa from the start, but ever since she got a sense of his potential, she has been struggling to make a novice into a full-fledged mayor.
Kurokawa Tomoka as Akiyoshi Mari
Akiyoshi Hiromasa’s wife. A full-time housewife. She became acquainted with Hiromasa at one of their university’s clubs and went against the opposition of her parents and married Hiromasa. However, the condition was that he take the Akiyoshi name upon the registration of their marriage. She is popular and is like an older sister that one can count on. There is talk that she is more suited than her husband to be the mayor.
Suzuki Masayuki as Tago Issetsu
The chairman of the neighbourhood association. He is living off his pension. He shows off hastily acquired knowledge from the news and other channels and lives to be told, “That person did well.” A neighbour who appears in unexpected places and at unexpected moments and cannot help commenting on the various problems arising in the area.
Sakai Toshiya as Handa Masato
Akiyoshi Hiromasa’s somewhat scatter-brained secretary. He devotes himself to daily lectures in order to make Hiromasa behave like a mayor. He respects Hiromasa’s father-in-law, Yoshiaki, but because no one can step into his shoes, he distances himself from Hiromasa.
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