Mama to Papa ga Ikiru Riyuu


Official Website

Thursdays, 9.00 – 9.54 p.m. from 20 November 2014


Christmas day is the day of Yoshioka Toko’s 35th birthday. She takes photos of a homemade cake with her handphone and quickly posts it on her blog. At night, her husband Kenichi, who is busy with work, comes back early just for today. They enjoy a birthday and Christmas party with their 6-year-old daughter Ai and 3-year-old son Yu. However, Kenichi notices that Toko is behaving slightly odd. After the children have been put to bed, he asks her what happened. That is when she tells him, “I may have breast cancer.” Toko had felt a lump in her breast and went to see a gynaecologist nearby. She receives word that she needs a reexamination and undergoes a checkup at a hospital. In the new year, Toko brings Yu with her to the hospital to hear the test results. She is pronounced with breast cancer by the doctor. Furthermore, surgery is already impossible because she is terminally ill. When she enquiries in a quavering voice about her life expectancy, the doctor cannot say for certain. That night, Toko vows to Kenichi that she will not let illness get the better of her for the sake of their children. She apologises for all the trouble that will lie ahead of them. These words make Kenichi angry. He hugd her and says, “I won’t let you die. I’ll protect you.” The next dat, Toko undergoes further checkups and gradually realises the reality of her illness. She is assailed by a wave of fear and anxiety. However, she cannot show these emotions in front of her daughter and son … … On the other hand, Kenichi receives the results of a health checkup he had undergone at the company some days ago. The words “must be examined again”, momentarily unsettles him. He had encountered a similar situation in the past. In the end, the test results were normal. Kenichi does not tell Toko or his mother about the reexamination so that they do not worry unnecessarily. However, he is diagnosed with lung cancer. Like Toko, it is at the stage where surgery is no longer possible. Kenichi has a strong desire to support and protect his wife. He feels that this is what the people around him expect too. He does not dare to tell anyone about his own illness … …

Fukiishi Kazue as Yoshioka Toko
She was not a member of any club during high school days, and was obedient in class. She met her husband, Kenichi, in high school, and married at the age of 26. She is a housewife. She dreams of taking part in the Honolulu marathon and blogging is her routine. One day, she feels a lump in her breast and visits a gynaecologist nearby. She is told that she needs a reexamination and pronounced with stage 4 breast cancer as a result.

Aoki Munetaka as Yoshioka Kenichi
Yoshioka Toko’s husband. A system engineer. He married Toko who attended the same high school as him. During high school days, he went through trouble with the police due to his youthful vigour. He works for a small IT-related firm which was set up by Nomura Kazuki, who had been the basketball coach. An outstanding system engineer, he became Nomura’s right-hand man and has been busy. Although he can be depended on, he is a bit simple-minded. This charming personality is why people have flocked to him since the old days. About three weeks after he learns about Toko’s cancer, he finds out that his body is also afflicted with cancer, but is unable to tell her or his family about this.

Fubuki Jun as Asami Makiko
Yoshioka Toko’s mother. An energetic career woman who was a newspaper reporter, she is now on a contract after reaching the mandatory retirement age. She also has literary work. In the early years, she could not give her daughter meticulous care because she was busy. She would often firmly tell and be hard on Toko, “Even women should be independent, choose the path to live and thrive in that path.” Due to the strength of those feelings, she was shocked when her daughter chose to be a housewife after childbirth. “My upbringing was in vain.” Seeing her daughter’s happiness at becoming a mother, she no longer has the intention to reproach her, but feels a little bit lonely. She has few opportunities to meet her daughter’s family because she is still busy now.

Kunihiro Tomiyuki as Asami Nobuhiko
Yoshioka Toko’s father. A former ward office employee, he is now busy as a local volunteer. He and his wife, Makiko, were university classmates. Although he is privately distressed by the strained relationship between his wife and daughter, he reckons that the day will come when they will understand each other because both of them are smart women. In truth, he is still deeply in love with his wife.

Asaka Mayumi as Yoshioka Yumiko
Yoshioka Kenichi’s mother. A housewife. After an arranged married, she miscarried her first child. Kenichi was born after that. She has a gentle personality, she has fortitude and takes pride in running a household well. Dressmaking is her hobby and she takes pleasure in making clothes and accessories for her grandchildren. She is happy that her daughter-in-law, Toko, became a housewife and has been taking good care of her son and grandchildren.
Because she does not have a daughter of her own, she cherishes Toko like her biological daughter. Toko herself has learnt to love her like her own mother. She naturally loves her only son, but does not smother him with love to the extent of clinging to him like she did in the past. She feels proud that she has been maintaining a sense of distance. Because her house is close to Kenichi’s, she would frequently go to visit and take care of the grandchildren. She would also call the whole family to her house to have meals together.

Duncan as Yoshioka Taiichi
Yoshioka Kenichi’s father. He runs a small business. He leaves household matters to his wife, Yumiko, and immerses in his work. He is still busy now although not to the extent that it was in the past. He is happy that his son’s family comes over to visit, but does not know know how to handle a young child and would end up feeling awkward. Perhaps the grandchildren can sense this because they are not as emotionally attached to him like they are to his wife. He actually feels a little lonely, but his pride will not allow him to speak about it.

Click here for photos from the press conference.

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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 Fall 2014 Dramas, TBS/MBS and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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