Kazokugari ep4-7 [review]


I can’t believe I chased this show from ep1 till ep7 in just one day. I won’t say it’s a fantastic drama because there were flaws and nothing is perfect but wow…I’m pretty much intrigued enough to actually watch everything even without subs. That’s how much I wanted to know the truth. Who was the third party involved in all the family suicides? It was made to show as if the sons themselves who killed their parents before ending their own lives. But Mamihara was convinced another person was present and pursued Yuko, whom he recognized by the scent.

Kazokugari ep04 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_44.34_[2014.08.18_22.37.51]

The show deals a lot with family problems, the usual ones for example parents pushing their children too much to study and whatnot, as in the case with Yoshizawa Ai. One day her bubble burst and she hurt her father.

Kazokugari ep04 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_44.38_[2014.08.18_22.37.59]

Then, there’s the hikikomori kid whom Shunsuke was trying to talk to and heal. However, in the end, everything was for naught when he ended up dead, taking his parents together with him. The ODD part was when Shunsuke saw Yuko crouching down by the bodies and wiped them clean from blood.

Kazokugari ep06 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_45.26_[2014.08.19_00.18.26]THAT WAS JUST PLAIN CREEPY!!!

Kazokugari ep07 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_02.59_[2014.08.19_00.20.59]Was she afterall actually involved in the cases? Shunsuke began to doubt her as well.

Kazokugari ep07 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_04.32_[2014.08.19_00.04.24]Just what was going on in Yuko’s mind? Was it because of the case she was handling years ago which ended up bloody that she blamed herself. Was the guilt too unbearable that she felt compelled to end the sufferings of  the families?

Kazokugari ep07 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_07.56_[2014.08.19_00.27.01]Yuko’s character is no doubt a complex one. It’s quite hard to dig into her mind. We do know she’s troubled enough with her own family – senile father and mother who’s suspected of having cancer. Couple that with a very demanding job, it’d be a miracle for one not to break down.

We’re made to suspect she was the one behind all the suicides until the end of the episode when Shunsuke asked her directly. She didn’t deny her involvement in causing the deaths of the families but it wasn’t her who killed them. I suppose we can take her off the list now that’s all cleared up. Although somewhere in my heart, I was ready to accept it if she was the culprit because this won’t be the first time for Japanese dramas to depict anti-heroes.

Kazokugari ep07 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_42.33_[2014.08.19_00.50.03]Mamihara is next on the suspect list. His junior found his lighter in the victim’s house and the evidence was secretly retrieved. Mamihara appeared as the most normal character in the show, a policeman with a great sense of justice and honour. Although a failed father figure and husband, I think his character is the most stable, compared with the rest (I won’t put Shunsuke on the list). I see him as a protagonist but not as conflicted as Yuko.

So we don’t know yet whether he had anything to do with the suicides. He remained strongly convinced with his suspicion about the scent. We know that scent is the shampoo used in Yuko’s house. I can’t help but drawn to suspect her family, then again, what are the chances that the culprit uses the same shampoo brand?

Kazokugari ep07 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_18.00_[2014.08.19_11.37.08]From here onwards, I’ll specify what I like about this show so far and what I don’t.

Matsuyuki Yasuko, Mizuno Miki and Endo Kenichi are basically the only ones I care about in this show. They’re great in their scenes and nothing seems fake or over-done. I feel sympathy towards them as well, especially Mizuno Miki’s character, Ayame.

Kazokugari ep04 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_06.22_[2014.08.18_21.53.28] Kazokugari ep04 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_06.36_[2014.08.18_21.53.45]

It’s really a pity her arc isn’t explored in depth and she only appears once in a while. Given the very limited amount of screentime, she still does justice as Ayame, a weak character in constant fear of her violent yakuza husband. But as a woman, she is strong in her own will and never once crossed any lines with Mamihara, I respect her for that. She knows she couldn’t fight the abusive husband alone but made an effort. Mizuno Miki has since grabbed my attention when I first saw her in Soratobu Kouhoushitsu. She was excellent there and I have yet to be disappointed in any of her roles.

Kazokugari ep07 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_16.51_[2014.08.19_00.38.13]I thought the confrontation between her and Mamihara’s mentally unstable wife was amazing.

Kazokugari ep06 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_09.46_[2014.08.19_11.45.36]What I didn’t really care for in the show is Ito Atsushi and his guy friends’ scenes. There were some scenes when I thought Ito Atsushi was great (mainly his confrontation with the hikikomori kid) but in some manner, I find his acting a bit exaggerating. There’s a difference between over-acting and actually doing it subtly. I’m probably not making sense here but anyways, I actually skipped most of his scenes. I’m not here for the bright and happy, I’m here for the dark psychological thrill.

In that sense, I think the show would’ve been better without the happier scenes. Not saying it should maintain a depressing state throughout, that’d be overkill but they should decide what they need to focus on and I think the side characters like Ayame’s struggle was more interesting than Shunsuke’s. They also didn’t quite explore enough into Yuko’s condition. Not to mention, that girl who swears in every episode, they should’ve built her arc in more details too. She felt like a wasted character who appears once in a while just to swear.

I can’t wait for the finale though! So till the next episode and I hope Ayame’s son is alright!

What kind of bastard the father is!!!

Kazokugari ep07 (848x480 x264).mp4_snapshot_20.08_[2014.08.19_11.53.25]

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