Jdrama Photo Recap Disclaimer: Since this is both a recap and a review of the show, there will be spoilers here. I’m watching this without English subtitles and while I understand a lot of Japanese, I’m not fluent. There are occasionally parts where I don’t understand what’s going on. And lastly, the photo captions are just snarky jokes and not meant to convey actual dialogue. So if you’re cool with all this, read on and enjoy!
During this week’s episode, we take a step away from the romance mostly for a look at some office politics. I like the change of pace even if I’m not all that interested in whatever corporate intrigue is going on. Things are changing at the Pegasus bookstore, so let’s see how everyone reacts!
Mita has a chat with Riko about his concerns over the company Tashiro works for. Riko’s in a good mood though, and just brushes him off with a speech of her own. Meanwhile, the corporate dude is being rather threatening to the friendly bookstore boss. (and you can tell he’s up to no good because of the obnoxious music cue in the background)
As it turns out, Friendly Boss is getting a promotion (?) or something, as Corporate Dude announces when he comes to the staff meeting the next day. He promotes Riko to the open position, making her the first female manager the store has had.
Everyone is excited except for Bitter Co-Manager who thought he’d get the job.
Of course, Riko and Shiho go celebrate together at the usual restaurant. The staff is excited for her too! They ask about what her father thinks of the promotion, but she says she hasn’t told him yet because he’s not really interested much in her work. Tashiro arrives at the restaurant and celebrates with them. (But he does make a weird face when they tell him about the promotion. Hm…)
Meanwhile, Aki and Obata are on a (maybe?) date at a nice outdoor restaurant because Aki promised they’d hang out after the Children’s Day event from the last episode. They’re having a good time and so Obata works up the courage to confess his feelings again.
He asks if Aki will date him and she actually says yes this time. It’s actually kind of cute how he doesn’t believe her at first and then she confirms it, and then that almost makes him cry tears of joy. LOL
Riko tells her father about the promotion when she gets home, and he’s not super enthusiastic about it, just like she predicted.
But once she leaves the room, he smiles. Why couldn’t he do that while she was standing there? Man, parental relationships are weird.
Anyway, on the first day of her new job, Riko gives out new assignments to the Gossipy Trio. But as Aki is working, she sees them all struggling.
In other news, OBATA FINALLY GETS TO SEE THE INSIDE OF AKI’S APARTMENT. HAHA
I never expected it to happen, but she invites him over to visit. He’s adorably enthusiastic about the whole thing as he looks over her bookshelves and geeks out over being the first guest she’s invited to the apartment.
At the bookstore the next day, Riko gets interviewed about her new position for a magazine. And at lunch, Aki brings bento boxes for the Gossipy Trio. They’re all excited until they discover that she decorated the food to teach them about the work stuff they were having trouble with. Poor Aki is so oblivious. They’re all a little disappointed at first but cheer up once they discover how delicious the food is.
But tragedy strikes at Riko’s house later as she discovers her father unconscious on the floor.
So she ends up at the hospital without her cellphone when she’s supposed to be at a very important meeting. She calls the office and Bitter Co-Manager answers the phone. But since he’s bitter, he doesn’t pass on the message to anyone. Friendly Boss has to apologize to everyone for Riko’s absence because he doesn’t know what’s going on. Once he returns to the office, Riko calls again so it’s okay. But Aki suspects that Bitter Co-Manager was being a jerk.
Riko’s father ends up being okay so she heads back to work the next day. She confronts Bitter Co-Manager about not passing on her message but he just denies it.
Friendly Boss gives Riko a lecture about responsibility while Aki listens in from the doorway. Also, Friendly Boss says some asshole-ish things about women and I’m reconsidering calling him Friendly Boss anymore. But anyway, Aki bursts in bringing Bitter Co-Manager. She demands that he admit the truth and she gives him a sterner lecture than anything Friendly Boss just said. It’s pretty awesome actually. AND THEN she even starts to yell at Friendly Boss until Riko tells her to stop. In the end, Riko ends up apologizing to Bitter Co-Manager. (but she also tells Aki thanks for sticking up for her) And later as Riko is leaving to go apologize to the corporate guys, Bitter Co-Manager comes to actually apologize, making him Not-So-Bitter anymore.
Even though that was nice, the guys over at Corporate were still pretty terrible. In fact, they want to close the store!
And to make matters worse, when she arrives at work the next day, everyone has read her magazine interview. In it, they’ve quoted her as saying negative things about the store. Riko, of course, didn’t say any of that. All around things aren’t good.
Mita tries to give Riko a pep talk but it doesn’t cheer her up.
Riko does, however, get a drink with Tashiro and he offers to help. The video I was watching cut out some of the end of the episode but there was definitely an ominous shot of Not-So-Friendly-Anymore Boss like stalking the two of them or something. Weirdly suspicious!
So what’s going to happen next week?? I’m not overly interested in all the office management intrigue going on, but I am interested in where this storyline about shutting the office down is going. I also sort of liked how Riko’s promotion brought up discussion on the topic of women in management positions. Bitter Co-Manager was partly so bitter because he was passed over for a woman. As a woman myself (who works in a mostly male-dominated industry), it’s infuriating to see men act like jealous like this. And it’s infuriating to see everyone set Riko up to fail. But I applaud the series for bringing attention to this problem. It’s all too easy to just brush it under the rug and forget about the way women are treated in the workplace. It will be interesting to see how this story continues. Will the corporate guys treat her better, or will it be brushed under the rug and drowned out in all the loud background music?
Final Thoughts and Questions
- As much as I complain about the dramatic music they play whenever something bad happens, I am still in love with this soundtrack. The violin and piano music is just beautiful.
- Everyone’s spending a lot of time in hospitals lately, aren’t they? Let’s hope future episodes get away from relying on this kind of plot point.
- Why does Mita always seem to disappear for like half the episode and then pop up again at the end? Give me your best crack theories. (Mine is that Mita has a secret identity as a superhero: Bookstore Lad!)
- Are you happy for Obata finally getting to date Aki? How long do you think this’ll last?
So what did you think? Like it or hate it? Just wanna go make cute bento boxes for your coworkers now? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments!
This week’s bonus photo is Aki’s hilariously creepy lunch she made for herself, featuring the faces of all her coworkers. LOL She’s eating their faces: