Alice no Toge ep8 [review]


Two deaths and a suicide attempt.

Can this show really get any better than this?

If there’s anything that I’d recommend after the likes of Hanzawa Naoki and Woman, it’s definitely hands down Alice no Toge. It’s like Hanzawa Naoki minus the over-acting.

Episode 8 is another rough journey. Actually, it’s more of an emotional trip. I saw a tweet last night when Alice was showing in Japan, this person was saying how she couldn’t help but cry together with her mum during the episode. I’ve not cried for any Alice episode before, afterall, it’s so different from a human drama like Woman which did make me cry for several episodes. But I have to admit, I do sympathize Asumi more so than Hanzawa in Hanzawa Naoki if we’re talking about dark protagonist in a revenge show.

Now to recap this episode. Yuma jumped to cover Asumi before Date could stab her and ended up getting hurt himself. Now, that knife was quite a huge one and it just made me wonder how many organs would’ve been damaged.

Date took out the knife and wanted to slash Asumi but was stopped by two guards. As Asumi’s medical instinct kicked in, she quickly tried to stop the bleeding.

“My dad killed your father, right? But, thank goodness…I was able to keep my promise to protect you.”

 

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You can say Yuma’s character was shortlived in this drama. He only appeared couple of minutes in each episode but I still really felt sad to watch him leave this show like that.

Yes, he died.

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Just as Bandai was getting into the ambulance to accompany his son, Arima pulled him down.

“Don’t tell the police anything.”

I was like geezz…man, his son just got stabbed, hanging between life and death and you still have the guts to warn Bandai with that cold stare?!

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“Are you satisfied with this?” – Bandai

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“It’s all your fault.” – Hoshino

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This sudden change of event with the death of someone innocent hit Asumi really hard. Her guilt piled up for about half the episode as she was absent from work and just staring into space at home.

Asumi’s step-father showed signs of some tummy pain when Nishikado went to ask about Asumi. I hope that’s just some gastric or normal pain because I seriously do not want him to end up having some kind of sickness. That’d just add to Asumi’s already depressing life.

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Nishikado tried to console Asumi and asked her not to put all the blame on herself.

“In the beginning, I thought I’d do anything for revenge. Involving family members and patients. But if I hurt them, I realized that I’m no different from those people. That’s why I decided to not meet him (Yuma) anymore. Yet, in the end, I’m the same as those people. I let an innocent man, such straight guy like him to die. I…should just die.”

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Meanwhile, we get to know that Bandai and Arima had something going on. I thought it was brilliant how they fooled us into thinking both of them were competitors in the hospital at first. Arima turned out to the one pulling the strings and even Bandai was under his control.

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Nishikado also met the girl named Suzu in the previous episode. She told him that she had found a donor from the Donation Center. *I was watching without subs so at this point, I’m not entirely sure of the medical terms* One point of interest here was when she told him that  long ago, she actually had a chance to receive a donor but it didn’t work out. Something called ‘koukansa’ or ‘exchange’.

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Asumi’s step-dad tried to get Asumi to eat properly but she was still down. I really like his character. I hope one day, Asumi will be able to truly confide in him.

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Bandai was angered by Arima and decided to leak information to Nishikado.

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A call came for Asumi when Kenta was in a critical condition. He kept calling for Asumi.

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This scene scared the hell out of me.

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Arima just suddenly appeared from the side and stopped Asumi from approaching Kenta.

That cold stare!

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“Unrelated people are just a hindrance. Please go back.”

This sequence was very well shot. For example, Arima’s cold stare and stepping forward forcing Asumi to step backwards out of the room. Then him ordering her to go home. Of course, Asumi being at her lowest and weakest point, just turned and left.

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Nishikado was curious after Suzu told him about the donor so he went to visit her again. There, he found out that she was actually Arima’s daughter.

Yea, I saw this coming.

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So let’s see….was Arima trying to find a donor illegally??

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Bandai called to meet Nishikado about Arima’s secret. He only told a fragment of it on the phone.

“It’s about Arima. 15 years ago, I was told by Arima to do something horrible. He tried to get organs using illegal method.”

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However, that night Nishikado never got to meet Bandai. He was killed before he could even tell him anything.

But one doesn’t have to use a million brain cells to figure out Arima’s secret. I think by now, it was pretty clear that Arima tried to get a donor for her daughter. 15 years ago, Asumi’s father may have been killed not by Bandai, but Arima because he found out his secret. Some patient probably died 15 years ago as a victim. And now, Arima’s trying to target Kenta (Yuma’s patient).

Asumi had something in her mind. By her body language, you know she was going to commit suicide.

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That smile she gave her step-dad. He told her he’d prepare lots of delicious meals for dinner so come back and eat.

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She went to meet Kenta and told him she was leaving. Kenta passed her a book. It was Yuma’s diary. I do feel sorry for this kid. Seriously, if Arima was plotting to get his organ for his daughter, then ^%$()@%#*$!!

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While reading the diary, Hoshino appeared.

“You do know that Bandai died? Was that also your doing? So who’s next? Who are you planning to kill?

Murderer.”

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”Don’t worry. I won’t be around anymore”

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Nishikado went to find Asumi at her house to tell about Arima’s secret.

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But it was empty. Nishikado suspected that Asumi was going to commit suicide so he rushed to the cemetery where her father was buried.

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Why is it that Asumi’s father always gets the BEST QUOTES ever in this show? First there was
“Tomorrow will be a better day”

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and now

「やらなきゃいけないと思ったことは何があっても負けずにやる。 患者さんのためだけじゃない自分自身ためにも。」

If there’s something you think you have to do, then do it without losing. It’s not just for the patients, but also for yourself.

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“I’m sorry, dad”

Nishikado found her bag and the Alice book at the trash can. I thought she’d leave it by her father’s grave though…

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I don’t think anyone can survive that fall if she were to jump down from the dam T_T

There’s a new background music here and oh…the FEELLLLSSSSSS.

It really fits this scene so much. I repeated multiple times and it still gets to me T___T

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Yes! Nishikado arrived just in time.

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“What do you think Osanai sensei will think if you die? There’s no way I’m gonna let you die halfway like that!”

”My atonement is not done yet!”

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That night, Nishikado relayed what Bandai told him and from reading Yuma’s diary, they figured out that Arima should be targetting Kenta now for his organs.

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YASSS!!!

Asumi’s back in business.

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Next morning, she went back to work and visited Kenta. Arima came and demanded what she was doing with his patient.

Asumi snapped back at him and told him she knew his plan for Kenta. Arima shrugged it off.

“I will protect Kenta.”

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Asumi took Kenta’s blood without Arima’s knowledge and upon examination, found that his ‘virtual crossmatch’ is positive with Arima’s daughter.

*spotted spelling mistake on the report lol*

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Hoshino picked up Bandai’s coat from the day when Date stabbed Yuma. She also found the recorder which had Asumi and Bandai’s conversation before the incident.
Now it’s really up to her what to do with this recorder. It can go both ways.

She can either give it back to Asumi or use it against her. Worst case scenario, this recorder now holds evidence of Asumi’s grudge and Motive for killing Bandai. Bandai’s killer is still loose so Asumi is still at risk for getting framed.

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Arima finally received his card.

YES! BLOODY HUNTER.

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He ripped it off with an evil smile.
This guy’s even crazier than Bandai!

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Thoughts:

Alice’s team keeps on outdoing themselves since episode 1. There’s absolutely not one dull moment in this show. It can only get better.

This week’s episode is more on the emotional side as our dark heroine faced a huge setback after Yuma’s sudden death. It had a huge impact on her because an innocent person died and she could only blame it on herself. I think this episode showcased another side of Asumi we’ve never seen before and that’s good. We got to see Asumi’s depression and ultimately, her decision to commit suicide.

I’d like to point out this piece of new background music for this episode. You can hear it during her conversation with Nishikado in her room right after Yuma’s death and also the scene when she was trying to commit suicide. I don’t know about any of you out there, but that piece of music really moved me. It’s so good.

I have to praise the screenwriters for all the plot twists and surprises. They had me fooled on Arima’s true nature right from the beginning! I thought he was going to be a good ally for Asumi but it turned out he was her biggest enemy afterall. It was quite amazing how different the plot for this drama turned out to be. At first, we all know Asumi’s taking revenge for her father who died in a supposedly medical error which the doctors involved swept under their golden rugs. But halfway through, it wasn’t a medical error but a planned murder. But why? That’s the big question.

Now I guess we know why.

The acting for the most part is nothing but marvelous. You can feel the villain’s evilness just by the way their face twitch or body language. I really love Odagiri Joe in this too. Such good chemistry with Ueno Juri and his character is definitely memorable. Most of all Ueno Juri deserves some praise for her acting here. Again and again, she proves why she’s one of the best among her generation. It’s hard to imagine this is her first drama role after 3 years hiatus. It’s as if she was never gone and her acting wasn’t rusty at all. I’m rooting for her to win Best Actress in this season’s TV Award. Even if she may not win, I hope the drama will win some awards for example, Best Soundtrack or etc… I think her biggest contender for the season may be Anne (god knows why Hanasaki Mai ga Damattenai is getting consistent high ratings even if the show’s mediocre at best). Yeah, I dropped that show already after ep5.

Anyways, if you haven’t picked Alice no Toge in your watch-list, make sure you do NOW.

If anything, it’s definitely a MUST-WATCH this season.

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6 thoughts on “Alice no Toge ep8 [review]

  1. Thank you so much for the preview, I like them. I really like the relationship between Asumi and Nishikado, Ueno Juri and Odagiri Joe did a good job. it’s pity that Odagiri has wife and children, hic, I love to see they together in real life( thus my wish)

  2. Now that my Yuma had died… I’m skipping Episode 8… Huhuhu… Soooooo saddd!! Yuma and that sweet sweet smiles and resolute attitude… gone forever! Blasted incompetent Asumi Alice! And his dad had to go and die too. It’s just too much. I guess having father and son die back to back is just so horrible…

  3. I enjoyed reading your review. I am pretty surprise you didn’t see that Arima was the bad guy. I started to suspect him when he had photos of her coming out of bandai room and when she was visiting that ex-mistress. I can understand if by those two event he actually saw it for himself but he had somebody personally watching her moves. Asumi should of knew he was up to something the moment he asked her to report any new to him about anything or anyone in her department. I must of been the only one that said oh **** power hungry man in the building

  4. Yeah, I was too naive to believe him. I think I just badly wanted someone to become her ally besides Nishikado. I knew it was odd that he’d constantly write stuffs on his notebook. I thought he was trying to snatch power from Bandai (who’s perceived as his no.1 competitor from ep 1) and probably could be useful to Asumi to bring Bandai down. But I just didn’t realize he would be involved in the whole thing 15 years ago sighh…

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