Zettai Kareshi Episode 4 Recap

Riiko’s complete lack of interest in Night’s sudden “attraction” to Mika is odd. Sure, she doesn’t see him as her ideal lover yet, but given how she’s softening towards him, what is with this lack of reaction? Actually, her attitude this episode kind of frustrates the heck out of me. That being said, LOVED all the physical comedy for Riiko in this episode.

The Basics:

Here we have Night getting “reset” and thinking Mika’s his girlfriend, Mika starts opening up to Night after he defends her and says she deserves better and Riiko finds herself growing closer to both Night and Soshi [though I think she’s leaning more towards her boss than her robot].

The Recap:

Riiko walks in on Mika kissing Night. Sure she’s surprised, but Mika quickly jumps back and says it isn’t what Riiko thinks at all. Then up pops Night who hugs Mika from behind. Mika pushes him away and beats a fast retreat. Night goes to follow and Riiko stops him and asks what is going on. Night picks her up and physically moves her in order to chase after Mika. However, he runs out of power and falls asleep. Riiko cannot believe this. She painstakingly pulls Night to the end of the hall where she sits him facing the wall. Kind of creepy if you came out and saw a person sitting there in the middle of the night. Riiko assures Mika that she is fine and that Mika shouldn’t worry whatsoever. And Riiko means it. It’s not like she is in love with Night and he isn’t her boyfriend, so what should she care what happens anyway. She really is way too cool about this and not in a good way.

The next day on the buys, Night has no idea who Riiko is. Say what? Riiko tells him her name and where he works and Night takes stock of all of that, but then promptly ignores Riiko as she is sitting next to Mika who he’s really interested in. How anyone in their right mind wouldn’t find Night’s actions here really fishy, is completely beyond me. Meanwhile, the people at Kronos Heaven are happy because Night’s bracelet is showing lots of pink so that means he’s pleasing his owner now. Wait until they find out that it isn’t Riiko, but Mika he’s pleasing. Namikiri is then informed that they have yet to receive Riiko’s first loan payment. This takes a bite out of his happiness.

The Asamoto gang arrives back in Tokyo and Night chases after Mika while Riiko tries to stop him. Night pushes her out of the way and takes off running after his new girlfriend. Riiko lands on something [it looks like ice cream, but I’m not 100% sure that’s what its supposed to be]. She then gets a call from Namikiri about how glad it is that she seems to be warming up to Night and then he comments on the loan payment. Riiko angrily says she isn’t paying them a dime and hangs up the phone. This shocks Namikiri. What happened?

Namikiri pays Riiko a visit and she denounces Night as a horny robot. Namikiri then says that the kiss [which Night would have never initiated to begin with, but that never seems to cross Riiko’s mind], reset Night. This shocks Riiko. How come Namikiri never said anything about a kiss rebooting and erasing the robot? Riiko then decides that she’s happy with this turn out. This way Night is off her hands and she doesn’t have to pay for him at all. Namikiri points out that the reset function was outlined in the user’s manual and he points it out to Riiko. Since its there, she cannot wiggle out of the contract that way. Plus, if Riiko doesn’t kiss Night to reset him again and Mika or anyone else finds out he’s a robot, that’s a 50,000,000¥ on top of the 100,000,000¥ that Riiko already owes. Dang.

At work, Mika asks if everything went okay with Night after the hot springs incident. Then up comes Night who sends Riiko flying so that he can talk to Mika. It’s so funny how Night completely disregards Riiko and is more disrespectful towards her. When he was her ideal lover, he was always kind and caring not just towards her, but to mostly everyone. The reboot really put a bit of a kink in his personality. Meanwhile, Asamoto tells Soshi that he is suspended for a week due to the creampuff debacle. Apparently only 15 were sold. Soshi tries to get his brother to acknowledge the goodness of the creampuffs to no avail. Soshi then makes a comment about having an easy week ahead of himself and leaves.

Night keeps stealing Riiko’s seat. This annoys the other girl. Why is he stealing her seat? Because he wants to be close to Mika and he’s even got a bouquet of roses. Is he using all the money he earned trying to help Riiko? The girls at the office are all abuzz about how it turns out the perfect Night is really a playboy. Riiko adamantly denies ever having any type of romantic relationship with Night. However, she does get hot under the collar and brings up to Night about how much money she’s thrown away on him. If her coworkers only knew. She then sends Night rolling away. Then in comes Soshi to grab his stuff and leave. Riiko is horrified to learn that he’s been suspended because of the creampuff incident. Soshi tells her not to worry as he has time to play now and then tells her to concentrate on working things out with her boyfriend.

Riiko goes home to an empty apartment and only mustard in her fridge. I do admit her Mr. Mustard bit was funny. Looks like she’s used to having Night around now and is lonely without him. Where is he? He’s at Mika’s trying to score a date. Namikiri and crony are watching to ensure Night’s true identity isn’t realized. Tanaka wonders why Riiko doesn’t reboot Night right away – does she hate him? Namikiri smiles and says it is quite the opposite. Meanwhile, Riiko keeps talking to Mr. Mustard. She has some hope when her landlady brings Ms. Pork over, but when she learns Night isn’t there, the landlady takes the pork back with her. Not important, just a funny as all heck scene.

Namikiri goes to Asamoto to encourage Riiko to hurry and kiss Night before she ends up paying the 50,000,000¥ penalty. Money talk always manages to get Riiko moving. Namikiri assures her a business kiss is fine, too, as long as she kisses Night. Thus starts Riiko’s hijack attempts that all end in failure and something bad usually happening to her. Riiko goes to the bar to work and asks for advice on what to do if your friend falls for an appliance. This makes the bar owner and worker think that Riiko getting dumped by Night has made her go crazy. Of course, Riiko should help the friend out. I guess this is the pep talk Riiko is needing to make her decide if she should really reboot Night or not.

Aibu Misaki, Hayami MokomochiRiiko goes out stalking Night and Mika on their date the next day. She in turn is being stalked by Namikiri. Riiko spies Soshi working hard on finding a store to pick up her creampuffs and gets distracted. Namikiri then reminds her of her mission and she goes scurrying after the couple. Mika leaves for a bit and Namikiri sends Riiko off to kiss Night. However, Riiko can’t bring herself to do it in a public place and lies to Night telling him that Mika suddenly got called into work to get Night to leave with her. Mika catches them and Night scolds Riiko about her actions and her carelessness about love. Wow. Wake-up call. Riiko’s getting a lecture from a robot! And he actually makes a valid point to boot!

Namikiri chases Riiko down to encourage once more, but Riiko has had enough. She needs to put her life in order and can’t necessarily concern herself with the Night problem… um, that doesn’t actually make sense as that problem can make her life even worse. Riiko heads home and runs into Soshi. She confesses she saw him earlier and then drags him off to make more creampuffs as the stores might not say no if they have a sample. This takes Soshi by surprise, but he’s happy that Riiko has decided to help in spite of her boyfriend troubles. Riiko assures him she wasn’t dumped and nor was Night her boyfriend. Soshi says nothing to this and then just points out that her “trendy” stain [from Night spilling wine on her] is cute. LOL. Oh, Soshi.

Night shows up at Mika’s apartment and refuses to stop knocking until she opens up. Mika tells him to quiet down or else she’ll get in trouble and Night explains he was tricked by “that girl.” He then wants to make it up by going on another date. He then lists things off and all the stuff he lists are all things that Riiko actually loves to do. Mika closes the door on him and this surprises Night. How come its stuff that Riiko likes? He goes off to find Riiko who is using Liberte’s kitchen to make creampuffs with Soshi. Mika throws his words back at him and tells him that if he really likes Mika, then Night should find out for himself her likes and dislikes. Soshi cannot believe Night could be so cold and cruel and ask such a thing without considering Riiko’s feelings at all. Meanwhile, Kronos has been apprised of the situation. If Namikiri can’t turn things around quickly, Night will be scrapped!

The next day Riiko skips work to help Soshi market the creampuffs. To no avail, however. No one wants the food that tastes great but isn’t pretty to look at. That’s right. Creampuffs aren’t a pretty pastry, but dang are they tasty if made right. Riiko asks about Soshi’s grandfather and he happily talks about the warmth and memories. Riiko then tells him to give it one more day. If they don’t succeed, then they’ll try for another week. How sweet. She’s trying to help his dream and keeps the memories of the warmth and love his grandfather shared alive.

(Chani’s cultural note: This seems like a great spot to discuss the phenomenon of Japanese desserts! I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned anything about them before or not, but the Japanese love to make their desserts look “pretty”, hence the aversion most places seem to have to the cream puffs in this episode. There are little café’s, often given French names or treated with a French feel, and they display their pretty cakes and things in glass cases for you to buy. The cakes themselves are not especially sweet. I’ve heard some other Americans that have experienced them say that they look better than they taste, and that they don’t like them. I do find them less sweet than American desserts as well, but that is a positive for me in many ways more than a negative. With really rich American desserts the initial bite is tasty but often they’re so rich that people, or at least I, often can’t finish them. With Japanese desserts even if the initial bite is sort of “blah” in comparison, by the time you’re done you’ve gotten a little sweetness, finished the whole thing without waste, and can feel satisfied. So I like Japanese desserts 🙂 But that’s just my opinion ^_^)

At Mika’s, she’s getting dropped off by a guy who has another girl that he keeps promising to break up with, but never does. Night shows up and tells Mika she deserves better than that scum who is just using her. Night’s defense of her and his words really touch Mika to the point that when he stays outside her apartment building all night, she brings him a blanket and arranges another date. This time he must promise not to move and wait for her to which Night quickly agrees. Namikiri watches all this with worry. Meanwhile, Soshi and Riiko are making more creampuffs when Soshi gets a call telling him that he and Riiko can participate in an event as someone canceled at the last minute. It’s a chance to get their creampuffs acknowledged.

The next morning the sleepy Riiko gets a call from Mika asking if its okay for Mika to start liking Night seriously. Aww, looks like the robot’s defense of her made her think about genuinely becoming a good girl and pursuing a normal, healthy relationship. This shocks Riiko, but she cannot be concerned with the Night problem now. She has arranged to meet Soshi at the restaurant he talked about. Namikiri tries in vain to stop her and get her to reboot Night, but she ignores him as she’s finally trying to change her life herself. Well, it’s about time, but she shouldn’t be shirking her responsibility.

So Namikiri and Tanaka go back to the restaurant and try to get Night to go back to Kronos with them. Night won’t budge. He promised Mika he’d wait for her so wait he will. When Tanaka tries to get him to come by using the barcode reader, a fire breaks out and the reader drops and breaks. Tanaka runs off to get a new one while Namikiri tries in vain to get Night to move. Namikiri then rushes outside looking for any random female to kiss Night to reboot him. He finally calls Riiko who is almost at the restaurant. When she sees the video, she immediately goes rushing over the restaurant. She finally manages to kiss Night just as his system is about to fry. He reboots and Riiko passes out. Night picks her up and carries her out, telling Namikiri to hurry out himself as it’s dangerous.

Riiko wakes up and is happy to find Night safe. She leaves him in Namikiri’s and Tanaka’s care while she rushes off to meet Soshi. Mika arrived at the right moment to see the hug between Riiko and Night and walked angrily away. So what will happen with Mika now? Namikiri allows Tanaka to assess Night for damages while he worries over something. If Night had been rebooted, which means his data on Riiko was erased, how is it that getting rebooted yet again he can remember Riiko’s name? That should not be possible. Looks like we’ve got a ghost living in the machine…

Riiko finally gets to the restaurant only to find Soshi is already gone and that is where we leave this episode.

Chani’s comments…

This episode was great! What really struck me early on in the midst of Night and Riiko’s antics as she tried to follow him around and end his relationship with Mika, was that this series does physical comedy really well. I especially like the scene where she gets knocked aside on the bus.

This episode, like the last one, had a lot of bits that cracked me up. I really enjoy the comedy they put into this series. A lot. 😀

At this point, we’ve lost the feel of the “formal”, overly polite Riiko we got in the beginning when she was trying too hard with the first love interest. We see a much more natural, fun-loving Riiko, and I find that I can connect with her character in the drama here more than I did with the character of Riiko from the manga. The manga wasn’t bad, but at this point I can say unequivocally that, at least so far, I like the drama much more.

One thing that I find weird, and again I may have mentioned this before, was that they’re testing the “product” of Night with Riiko, and Kronos Heaven keeps threatening Namikiri with scrapping the project because Night isn’t making Riiko happy. First of all, if the goal of the Nightly Lovers series was to sell them to older, lonely housewives, WHY aren’t they testing the product on the demographic that they intend to sell it to? I mean, if an older, lonely housewife had decided she wanted to buy the product for its intended purpose, and tested it out, she’d probably be pretty satisfied. It doesn’t seem like a smart way to test a product at all, giving it to a younger, working woman, who obviously didn’t know what she was getting into at all. I mean, they didn’t even really explain to her what she was getting when they had her answer the survey. I know it’s just a test product and maybe they didn’t want to be blatant with their advertisements of it, and it’s supposed to be a big secret at this point, but really, how do you test a product on someone who didn’t even want to buy it initially. It’s… weird. I mean if it was something anybody could use like a toothbrush that’d be one thing, but, again, it’s something designed for a very specific demographic. And I’m going to stop now because I’m rambling. As you can see, this is really my main beef with the logic of the story.

This episode leaves me hoping that Mika turns into a nicer person all around.  Though given how upset she was in seeing Riiko and Night at the end I’m not sure. She could go either way at this point, I guess. Oh, if only she had made it to the café and could somehow have kept her hold on Night. She liked him better in a romantic sense than Riiko did, though she didn’t know he was a robot. Still, I could see her with Night – too bad it didn’t go that way.

The scene with the fire was rather… over the top? I found myself yelling at the screen telling them that they should move faster in getting out of there. Really, what was the deal with moving so slow? Don’t spend your time staring at the passed out Riiko, Night, just run her out of there! Seriously! LOL.

So given the way the episode ends, I’m assuming the whole “triangle” between Riiko, Soshi, and Night is going to start up soon as Riiko becomes more interested in Night. He’s cute and all, and you really start to feel for him when you notice he’s become human enough to remember Riiko’s name, but I still wish she had let the relationship end before it got this intense. Because I prefer her with Soshi. I do, I do, I do. 😀

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