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The late Meiji era was a time when the mercantile city Osaka prospered tremendously. Fujioka Ten was born into a family that runs Fujiokaya, a long-established drug wholesale business in Kyoto. She always makes the people around her smile brightly. She also laughs easily by nature and would burst into laughter at the pranks of her siblings Shinichi and Rin who love playing practical jokes, at the expense of important business discussions. But one day, Ten is ordered by their strict father Gihei not to smile in front of people. So she sulkily spends time at home without cracking a smile. At that moment, she meets Kitamura Tokichi, an itinerant entertainer, with a love for laughter and this transforms her life. Tokichi loves traditional performing arts and teaches her that laughter is the medicine that gives people the power to be happy. Ten falls in love with him. Shrugging off the opposition of her parents, she runs away to Osaka with Tokichi. He is actually the eldest son of a rice dealer in Osaka Semba so it is far from easy for the two of them to be permitted to marry. Moreover, he greatly fails in his attempt to save his family business and ultimately ruins it through neglect as a result of his deepening love for traditional performing arts. This prompts Ten to suggest making a business out of comedy. And so the couple who are little more than amateurs, begin their great adventure to make not only the people of Osaka but also Japan laugh.

Aoi Wakana as Fujioka Ten
The eldest daughter of family that runs a long-established drug wholesale business Fujiokaya. She always makes the people around her smile brightly and also laughs easily. But one day, she is ordered by her strict father Gihei not to laugh and spends her days stifled. At that moment, she encounters Kitamura Tokichi. She discovers the power of laughter through him and this convinces her that laughter is life’s hope. Because of that, her motto is to always smile, be kind to people and tough in business. She works hard to spread laughter and fulfill dreams throughout the country.

Matsuzaka Tori as Kitamura Tokichi
The eldest son of a rice dealer in Osaka Semba. An itinerant entertainer who is reluctant to take over the family business, he meets Fujioka Ten when their seats get mixed up and falls in love. He loves laughing but has no performing talent so he returns to Semba determined to take over the business in order to marry Ten. A kind-hearted person who trusts people too much, his flaw is failing because he is too trusting of people. However, he never forgets his promise to Ten to make her laugh all her life, he is also a romantic who to make this a reality.

Takahashi Issei as Ino Shiori
Born and raised in Tokyo, he is the son of the company president of Ino, an Osaka pharmaceutical product company but because he is not the child of the legal wife, a trading company is set up in Kobe and he is placed a distance from the family home. A magnanimous man who was supposed to marry Ten. But after he learns that she loves Kitamura Tokichi, he supports her. He is interested in entertainment. This deepens his friendship with Tokichi and Ten, and he establishes spectacular show business in Japan.

Hamada Gaku as Takei Futa
The child of a relative of the Fujiokas, he works as a sales clerk at Fujiokaya. He grew up with Fujioka Ten since childhood and is like a good older brother. But Ten constantly treats him as a younger brother. In fact, he secretly likes Ten and would even risk his life to protect her. Even after Ten gets together with Kitamura Tokichi, he is willing to work himself to the bone for her sake and is a single-minded but charming man who vows loyalty for life.

Endo Kenichi as Fujioka Gihei
Fujioka Ten’s father and the owner of Fujiokaya. He won the Fujiokas favour with his work performance when he was a head clerk and married into the family. In a nutshell, he is a completely uninteresting man who is too serious and has a sullen look. However, he is also a compassionate person who cares deeply for his family. The story starts from his strict order to Ten not to laugh. But he may actually be the true god of laughter.

Suzuki Honami as Fujioka Shizu
Fujioka Ten’s mother. A mild-mannered wife who is prone to making silly mistakes. But she is good at cooking and runs Fujiokaya’s kitchen. She understands more than anyone else, the great pressure her husband Gihei is under as the son-in-law who married into the family. A wise woman who acts as a go-between for her children and their father. It is impossible to talk about Ten’s laughter and kindness without her mother.

Chiba Yudai as Fujioka Shinichi
Fujioka Ten’s older brother. A pharmacology student. Because he has has a weak constitution since he was small, he wants to develop a cure which can treat any kind of illness and dreams of studying abroad in Germany in order for research in the future. There are times when he defies his strict father. But he is proud of the work of a drug wholesaler and also respects his father who is honest in his work. He is a very kind older brother to Ten and also opens her eyes to laughter.

Hotta Mayu as Fujioka Rin
Fujioka Ten’s younger sister. She loves Ten who keeps smiling. Unlike Ten who always causes trouble, she is similar to their mild-mannered mother and has never made their father angry. However, when she accepts that Ten has run away with Kitamura Tokichi, she makes an uncharacteristically daring move which shocks the people around her. Is she actually the type of female who fears making people angry just like her mother.

Yoshida Tomoko (Iyana Onna, Gakkou no Kaidan)

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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 2017 Dramas, NHK and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Warotenka

  1. junny says:

    Aww, Takahashi Issei friend-zoned in this asadora. Anyway, he’s like 17 years older than Aoi Wakana, so it’s just as well.

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