Saikou no Rikon – Episode 3 Synopsis

Episode 3: The truth and reality of another couple


Yuka arrives at the matchmaking party that her friend Mika invited her to. Thinking that she has made a mistake when she does not see Mika there, Yuka beats a quick retreat. Just as she is about to leave, one of the ladies tells her that Mika had to rush back to work. So Yuka awkwardly settles down, but with all the male attention focused on the other females who are young street models, there is nothing she can do but indulge in drinking beer. Irked by the way which the young part-time worker Hatsushima Junnosuke is deliberately treating her, Yuka declares that she is going off. But at that moment, an older salaryman Omura Keisuke shows up.

On the other hand, Mitsuo is stupified to be told by Akari that she has no good memories of their time together when he visits her home with the intention of broaching the topic of her husband’s infidelity.


That night, Mitsuo and Yuka, who are forced to live together despite their divorce, each arrive home heaving deep sighs that betray their weariness yet try to pretend that they had a good time. It is no surprise that the two of them quickly end up sniping at each other. So Yuka proposes to Mitsuo that they lay down rules for the time that they will be living together to avoid quarrels. The two of them establish the rules: 1. Don’t express displeasure, 2. Don’t be dependent, don’t behave like a baby, 3. Don’t enter one another’s room, 4. Put down the toilet seat, 5. Don’t go about in underclothes after taking a bath, 6. Don’t be conscious of each other’s gender, 7. Freedom to love, and tack this on a cork board.

Akari gripes to her companion about how Mitsuo seems to be under the impression that she still likes him even though she treats him like an acquaintance. She was glad that he seemed happily married. And yet he came over to her house, badmouthed her husband, then proceeded to declare that he has divorced and has good memories of her. That freaked her out and made her think of the kind of movie where the neighbour is a psychopath. “If I’m ever murdered, the killer is definitely that man, Hamasaki Mitsuo.”


At that same moment, Mitsuo is thinking of a movie too as he talks to Umino Nana, the oral hygienist that he visits at the dental clinic. A different kind in which the neighbour is an ex and they fall in love again. He quickly says that is not what he desires. All he wants is to help her. So he cannot understand why he is despised. Nana tells him that there have been exes who have reconnected through Facebook or Naver’s Line and reconciled. Jumping at this chance, Mitsuo visits a mobile phone shop with Nana that night and purchases a smart phone. He immediately gets her to create a Facebook account for him. However, he cannot find anything on Akari even though he types her name in and whines why he bought the smart phone in that case. Next, he gets Nana to try keying in Yuka’s name.


A photo of Yuka practicing at a golf driving range has been updated in real time. Mitsuo’s eyes widen. Yuka is actually with Omura who is coaching her in her first attempt at golf. In retaliation, Mitsuo invites Nana to a table tennis bar and posts a photo of himself which Yuka ends up seeing when notified of suggested friends. Realising that Mitsuo can see her updates on Facebook, Yuka follows this up with photos of herself indulging in a lavish meal of crab. What ensues is a hilariously ridiculous game of one-upmanship where Mitsuo and Yuka each get so glued to their phones and caught up in outdoing the other that their partners are neglected … …

Meanwhile, one of Ryo’s girlfriends, Arimura Chihiro, discovers Ryo’s marriage registration form in one of the table drawers in school. When she shows it to him and asks why it is there, he simply takes it from her but makes no comment.


On another day, Mitsuo visits Kingyo Cafe in a worn out state after being roped in for baseball practice again. Ryo is performing magic tricks inside the cafe to an appreciative audience of housewives from the neighbourhood and Tomoyo. Tsuguo and Mitsuo watch sourly. Tomoyo advises Mitsuo to learn magic from Ryo. However, Mitsuo’s immediate response is that he dislikes magic and scoffs at the silly responses the audience makes. Ryo perceives that it is not magic that Mitsuo dislikes, but rather seeing people happy. And yet he cannot seem to understand why Mitsuo will not be happy if he sees other people happy. Mitsuo likens it to watching people laughing like idiots on television and how it makes him want to dismantle the set. All of a sudden, he asks Ryo how he can be popular.


At the same moment, Yuka, who is having tea with Aiko at the laundry shop, suggests having a meal together after the pro wrestling match because she has something that she wants to say. Aiko gets curious and repeatedly asks Yuka to tell her about it now. Just as Yuka is preparing to break the news to her, a customer comes in. It is Akari. Recognising each other Akari and Aiko exchange pleasantries. Yuka is intrigued to meet a friend of Mitsuo’s for the first time. Akari tries to say that just because they attended the same university does not mean they are friends. It gets more awkward for her when Aiko wonders aloud whether her grandson had a girlfriend then. But Yuka unwittingly saves her from answering by dismissing the idea. She is certain that Mitsuo would not have been popular. In fact she thinks that a man’s value is determined by whether he is tiresome or not. Aiko agrees without hesitation. Yuka cannot resist adding that a man’s fastidiousness is the worst.


In contrast, Mitsuo seems to regard fastidiousness as a virtue. He cannot understand why a female who wants to eat spicy food would then complain when he brings her to an authentic Thai restaurant that the food is too spicy to be eaten. He asks Ryo for advice on what he should say when asked to give feedback on finger nails or what sort of expression he should have when a conversation about Sex and the City begins. Ryo merely makes vague noises and claims he is not that popular. Mitsuo, who has finished wrapping the gyoza, declares that he is going home. However, he has a recurrence of lower back pain and needs Ryo’s help to return home. Then Yuka brings Akari back to wait for the confections that Aiko has gone home to take, and the four of them come together for the first time … …


After Akari has introduced Ryo and Yuka to each other, Yuka excuses herself to check on Mitsuo who is resting in bed. Recognising Ryo as the man who previously came to the laundry shop with a lipstick stained shirt, Yuka asks Mitsuo how she should break the news to Akari. He tells her in a harsh whisper to feign ignorance. Yuka grumbles that she is bad at hiding things. Just like their divorce. Mitsuo makes the mistake of letting her know that only Akari is aware of their divorce which gets Yuka curious. Why was it that he told Akari and not Ryo about it and what were the circumstances that led him to do so. She quickly joins the dots together, and guesses at who Akari is to him. Wrinkling her nose in distaste, she leaves the room and plasters on a bright smile.


Hearing that Mitsuo is in great pain, Akari offers to give him a massage and goes into the room. Mitsuo apologises to her for what happened the other day but she tells him to stop and put the matter behind him. She recently moved into the neighbourhood and wishes to live here for a while. What is right and wrong does not matter to her. So she asks him to turn a blind eye even if he sees Ryo outside with someone else. She is happy with her life now.


The sun is setting but Aiko has still not come over. Yuka sees Mitsuo reclining on the sofa and comments in front of Akari and Ryo that Mitsuo’s presence bothers her while he keeps emphasising that this is his house. The Ueharas exchange glances. Bristling at the way Mitsuo seems to imply that she has not been a good host to their guests by his choice of words and tone, Yuka tells him not to embarrass her and to shut up. “The two of you don’t quarrel?” Yuka asks Akari and Ryo. They say they have never ever fought. Ryo wonders what the Hamasakis fight over. Everything and anything it seems. Yuka proceeds to relate a story of one of the insensitive things Mitsuo said to her that made her angry. Akari thinks it does not do much good to get angry at what men do.


At that point, Ryo reminds her that she had once told him about a horrible ex-boyfriend from university days who made her angry to the extent that she wished him dead. Akari quickly denies it while Yuka casts a covert glance in Mitsuo’s direction. Just as the Ueharas stand up to leave, Mitsuo asks, “What did that person do? Please tell me. What did he do?” Yuka urges Akari to ignore him, but she settles back down in her chair. Akari says she was born in Hachinohe City, Aomori Prefecture. Her father was a fisherman and she was daddy’s girl. When she was 14, her beloved father died at sea after being attacked by a shark when he fell overboard. From that time, she was always in a daze and would cry uncontrollably whenever she was assailed by memories of him. One day, she was saved by the song ‘Classic’ by Judy and Mary which she heard playing in a shopping centre. She immediately went to a CD shop to buy the record and listened to it thousands of times. Inspired by the vocalist YUKI, she came to Tokyo with the dream of becoming a singer. Even after she entered university, she would secretly practice on the musical instrument and write her own songs despite the realisation that she had completely no talent.


Around that time, she met a guy and turned to love as an escape. They started living together but she kept quiet about her dream because she felt embarrassed. Several months later, she made up her mind to tell him all about her dream and her father, and put the Judy and Mary CD on a continuous loop. When he came home and heard the music, he commented that it was a silly song; cheap music like a flower-patterned toilet seat cover. Akari said nothing in response and just told him she was going to the convenience store. On her way back, she resolved that she would give up her dream since she could not become YUKI. She was after all a very ordinary and boring person. After she got home, she saw him watching the movie Jaws on television. He laughed and said, “I wouldn’t want to be eaten by a shark and die.” The next day, she impulsively left home without a word. A sympathetic Yuka thinks that was horrible of him. But in Akari’s opinion, no one was in the wrong. It is just that what gave her the strength to live, was probably a toilet cover to someone else.

The next evening, Mitsuo buys a Judy and Mary CD and rushes home to listen to the track ‘Classic’. Later that night, he walks over to see Akari. However, she refuses to open the door for him so he is forced to stand on the other side of the door and apologise. “I don’t remember that time. I don’t remember, but like you mentioned, I really said terrible things … …” Before he can continue, he hears the key turn in the lock and sees her walk away.


Mitsuo comes down the stairs and sees one of Ryo’s girlfriends throw something that shatters one of the windows at the house. She runs off. Not knowing what to do and worried that he will be suspected, he follows after her. The two of them arrive at a cafe and take seats. Mitsuo declares that it is useless for her to run away because he knows about her. Chihiro surprises him when she declares that she knows about him, having seen him walk with Akari. Could the two of them be having an affair? After all, he was standing outside the door like a stalker. Mitsuo tries to cut her off and focus on what she had just done. However, all Chihiro is interested in, is knowing whether he has any intention to snatch Akari away. She guesses that Akari is already aware of her relationship with Ryo and yet acts so nonchalant. “That’s because she thinks Ryo-san is hers. But he is not hers or anyone else’s.” Then she drops the bomb that Ryo has not registered their marriage. Mitsuo listens in stunned silence as Chihiro goes on to say that he is free to like Akari because it is not adultery.


Sometime later, Mitsuo, who is standing by the canal looking at the falling snow, notices someone behind him. It is Akari. Walking forward, she places the stone that shattered her window in his hand and apologises for saying things that were out of line. What happened no longer matters because it was in the past. Mitsuo interrupts and asks in a lifeless tone if he should die? Akari repeats herself again in a louder voice and stresses that she no longer feels that way. However, Mitsuo does not appear to hear her. He mutters to himself that he does not know what he should do or what he should say. There are many things that he cannot do right.

At that moment, Ryo is in bed with another girlfriend, Hino Aki. She says he had a nightmare. Ryo tells her that he dreamt of the Cassiopeia, the sleeper train which travels overnight from Ueno to Sapporo. He realises that he sees it often when he is with women.

“It’s similar to the game Tetris.
Tetris is hard to understand.
The blocks keep descending one after another and have to be matched.
When they do, they disappear.
It’s just like my feelings now.
I don’t know what I’m doing. I’ve no goals nor end too.
I just feel like I’m being pressed, constantly being hurried”

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About jadefrost

This blog contains information and musings on current and upcoming Japanese dramas but is not intended to be comprehensive.
This entry was posted in Fuji TV, Saikou no Rikon, Winter 2013 Dramas and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Saikou no Rikon – Episode 3 Synopsis

  1. rootabega says:

    Love your synopses – more please!

  2. rootabega says:

    Wow…thank you for episode three. I love how every reaction shot is meaningful in this dorama – it’s not just the usual filler.

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