TROUBLEMAN Episode 9 Recap
And now we get to slowly see how Tokuda is connected to the misfortunes of every one around him (as in physically). Oh, and we even see how he is connected to the mangaka who eventually kills herself in Makiko’s apartment. There is something in this world known as 6 degrees of separation. The theory behind this is that everyone in this world can be connected by 6 people. So even if they don’t know each other, they know someone who knows someone who knows the other person – thus everyone is connected. Kind of freaky about how true it can be in some cases.
Tagawa is still slumped over in the opposite room while the others sit around Tokuda in silence. All that can be heard is the ticking of the clock. Makiko then asks what happened afterwards. Tokuda replies that he didn’t feel like going home so he went to a riverbank by himself. He once more recalls the warning to stay away from those he loves otherwise he will put them in danger. He angrily throws a stone away and recalls Yuko’s (his girlfriend’) smiling face. At this time, Yakuza boss Asai approaches and recognizes Tokuda from helping them catch the guy from before.
Asai looks around and asks where Tokuda’s girlfriend is. Did she dump him? Tokuda replies no and Asai then says that Tokuda looks troubled. Tokuda says nothing and Asai says he can’t blame him as there are a lot of annoying things in the world. He then takes another glance and Tokuda and asks if they’ve met before today. Tokuda replies that they haven’t and Asai ponders just why Tokuda looks familiar (guess he forgot he was supposed to have Tokuda killed).
Meanwhile, Tagawa watches Asai and Tokuda talk, wondering what they are talking about. Is Asai planning on killing Tokuda himself. Asai then tells Tokuda that he comes to the riverbank a lot as well. It may not look like it, but Asai has a lot of troubles as well. Asai has to worry about drugs, prostitution, keeping the gang together, and drugs. Asai realizes he said this twice and the two men laugh (funny how Tokuda doesn’t feel scared by Asai’s occupation). Asai says that having a scary face isn’t enough for a yakuza. He then confesses that he didn’t choose the life of a yakuza – he didn’t have an option as trouble has followed him for a long time. This perks Tokuda’s interest and Asai replies that he is a troubleman.
Asai tells Tokuda that a lot of bad things have happened to him. It’s as if trouble has always followed him, or rather he has created it. Tokuda asks how Asai handled this and Asai replies that he struggled with it, worried about it, and eventually got tired of it and decided to make it his job. Kind of like the “if you can’t beat them” mentality. Definitely not what Tokuda wanted to hear. Seeing Tokuda’s reaction, Asai asks if the younger man is a troubleman, too. Tokuda affirms this and Asai replies with “It sucks, doesn’t it?” To which Tokuda obviously agrees once more. Asai then tells Tokuda that people live best when they always smile. Asai knows this, but still he chose all the wrong paths. But there is nothing he can do about it now so he can only meet trouble head on. Tokuda finds this outlook amazing.
Asai looks at his watch and sees that he has to get going. He wishes both himself and Tokuda luck with facing the troubles that are bound to come there way. As he gets up, Asai turns to Tokuda and tells him it’s love. What’s love? Asai repeats once more that it is love that is needed. You have to have love. As long as Tokuda has love, he will be fine. Asai then points his finger like a gun at Tokuda and then walks away. This confuses Tagawa who is watching from afar. Is that a threat to Tokuda? Is it a single that now is the time to shoot? Deciding it’s the latter, Tagawa takes out the gun and cocks it, aiming at Tokuda. His hand starts shaking like crazy and he can’t seem to gather the courage to pull the trigger.
At this time, a young boy comes up and it is Tagawa’s son Hikaru! This startles Tagawa. Tokuda sees the boy approach with his box of rocks and wonders what love will be able to do. He tosses another rock as the boy sets his box down by the riverside and tries to skip stones. Failing at getting the rocks to skip, Hikaru asks Tokuda if he can do it. Tokuda gets up and tosses a rock, skipping it across the surface. Hikaru is amazed and then opens his box of rocks for Tokuda to use. Tokuda digs through them and pulls out the infamous rock that caused Ozaki’s accident. The boy tells him that is Tokumaru (all these objects having names that start with Toku). Hikaru explains that means the rock is special. This, of course, brings Tokunosuke to mind.
Amused, Tokuda tells Hikaru to watch as he will throw it with all of his might. Recalling the two psychics and all the events that happened recently, Tokuda winds up and tosses the rock as if he is trying to throw all of his troubles with it. The boy and Tokuda yell at Tokumaru to go and it skips across the water until it breaks the car’s windshield and causes it to go off the road. This shocks Hikaru, Tokuda, and Tagawa. None of them can seem to move. Sheesh. What rotten luck.
Cutting back to the present, Ozaki clenches his fist in anger while the other three stare in shock at the unconscious Tokuda. Makiko then asks once again what Tokuda did next.
Flashback once more. Tokuda then walks away with Tagawa still following. Tokuda goes by a food stall where an old woman is trying to buy food, but doesn’t have any small change and the woman seller can’t break the other one. Tokuda offers to pay as he has small change. As he goes to take it out of his wallet, a coin rolls out towards the street. The woman pays for her items as you hear breaking glass and the sounds of a horn. We can then hear Makiko yelling out Kouji’s name. Connection #2.
Back in the present, Makiko drops the yen coin that caused Kouji’s death, Ozaki starts shaking even more, Kameda concentrates harder, and Sasaski’s eyes well with tears. Tokuda keeps talking. He was scared of being involved in the turmoil. We then cut to Tagawa’s perspective. We see Kouji give the coin to Makiko with Tagawa staring in shock, watching Tokuda nonchalantly walking away. Tokuda pursues him down an alley, but when Tokuda turns a corner, Tagawa manages to lose site of him and quickly tries to pick up the trail once more.
At this time, Tokuda approaches a group of women who are all talking. He sees a can and picks it up and throws it out. Now, you’d think he would have noticed that this can was right by a wheel and probably had a purpose, but now. The baby carriage immediately starts rolling backwards. The mother turns and notices this and screams, catching Tokuda’s attention. He cannot believe what he sees when he turns around. We then see Kameda and his girlfriend laughing and talking. We get to see once more how Kameda’s girlfriend died to save the baby in the runaway carriage. Connection #3. Again, Tagawa sees this and stares in shock. He then starts looking for Tokuda once more.
Back in the present, Kameda cries, Makiko stares in shock and Sasaski cries as well. Tokuda explains that he thought doing good deeds would help his crappy lucky. But in his case, no good deed goes unpunished.
Back in the past, Tokdua is walking wondering why this is happening to him. He just wants to help people. So why does horrible and bad things always happen? He stops walking and recalls his moments with Yuko. Nothing bad has happened to Yuko. He wonders why that is. He comes to the conclusion that he must be getting better since nothing has happened to her so far. This improves his rotten mood (boy, talk about a long, annoying inner monologue, though).
Tokuda then notices the Sasaskis get up and leave a bag behind. To test his theory to see if he’d really gotten better, he runs and grabs the bag and hands it off to Mr. Sasaski. Connection #4. The old man takes it and when nothing immediately bad happens, Tokuda believes that his luck has changed. He sits down on a bench and laughs in relief. At this point, Tagawa has finally caught up to Tokuda once more. The girl who kills herself at Makiko’s approaches then and sits down. Connection #5. Tokuda looks over and recognizes her as a famous mangaka. This makes the girl freak out and the woman she was with glared at Tokuda angrily.
A man then comes up and Tokuda gets up to let him sit on the bench, too. Unfortunately, this topple the bench over and the crazy mangaka crashes into a row of bicycles, causing a domino effect which takes out a guy smoking. His cigarette falls down a manhole where they are working on gas lines causing an explosion which knocks Tagawa out. Yeah. Poor Tokuda can do nothing but stare in shock at the flames and explosions that had erupted, inadvertently all his fault.
Tagawa comes to and looks behind him to see the flames. He picks himself up off the ground and staggers over to a wall. Blurred visions of his family come to him. A happy Christmas, fighting with his wife…but things slowly fade and go hazy. He tries walking once more and falls unconscious. That mystery is officially explained finally.
We then cut to the hospital where all of our tenants go. Makiko is with Kouji who is being wheeled in to surgery as is Kameda with Saachan. We then see Ozaki, stumbling around in the background with his head patched up. Meanwhile, are protagonist is madly running and screaming. In the present, everyone is crying now. Back in the past, we see Tagawa wake up in the same hospital. When he goes out into the hall, he crosses paths with all the tenants, just actually missing running into them. This time we also see the crazy mangaka and Sasaski. Funny how close these people were and they didn’t even realize it. Meanwhile, Tokuda just keeps running through a tunnel, crying. He is running as if something is chasing him – trouble? the devil?
It is interesting that when Tokuda emerges from the tunnel where he was all alone and we couldn’t see any cars, he is now in the middle of a whole bunch of cars. Go figure. Anywho, end episode.