ATARU Episode 8 Recap

I think episode 9 is supposed to be the last one, but I could be wrong. If it is, I am sad to see this drama coming to an end. I will miss our sleuthing trio, the detectives, and the Ebina family.

This episode starts with spontaneous human combustion! Okay, not really, but we have a man on fire so you know that’s the next crime they will be investigating. We then cut to the hospital where the doctor is worried because Chokozai is STILL not sleeping. This surprises Ebina, he collapsed during the gun battle and then she recalls the night before when she was talking to Chokozai (he appeared asleep to her, but we saw his eyes open). The doctor explains that he obviously hasn’t been which isn’t a good sign. This is also Chokozai’s penultimate appointment. After his next one, Ebina will check him into a facility if his identity still isn’t cleared up. Ebina may says that, but I have my doubts since she practically went through separation anxiety from Chokozai when she took him to the hospital the first time.

Larry who was listening in on this conversation gets really worried. If Chokozai is institutionalized, that would jeopardize everything! Right. Because Chokozai is soooo good at remaining in hospitals. He quickly puts down his listening set and rushes off.

We then go back to the seen of the fire. Sawa arrives and learns that the deceased, Himura, was a mail order maniac. It appears that kerosene was all over the apartment. Ishikawa then shows a lighter which was most likely what set the fire. Was there any signs of struggle or wounds (hard to tell on a body that’s been burned to a crisp, isn’t it?)? Not that can be readily seen. Matsushima then wonders if the man set himself on fire. *Shudders* What a way to go. Nozaki says there is no note as it would have burned up in the apartment as well. Sawa orders an autopsy and Nozaki says he’s chasing after another discarded mountain just like Ebina. Actually, wouldn’t it be standard practice to give a burn vic an autopsy just to be on the safe side to make sure there was no other way the person died?

Chokozai and Ebina leave the hospital and Ebina tries to ask Chokozai if he every wears summery clothes (he’s always wearing hoodies and an overcoat), when Chokozai spots Larry. Chokozai says nothing and just walks towards the car and gets in. This shocks Ebina. She immediately rushes over and apologizes saying she will immediately get him out of the vehicle. Larry just invites her along instead. Ebina asks if she knows him and Larry says she doesn’t, but he’s been looking for Ataru for a long time.

We then cut to Nozaki, Matsushima, and Sawa questioning the deliveryman who called the police. As soon as they all get in the car, the electrical devices go haywire. Weird. We then cut back to Larry, Ebina, and Chokozai at the FBI headquarters in the US Embassy. Larry reveals that Ataru is an agent-in-training. He then explains that the FBI requited those with supernatural abilities, but that programmed failed, thus the savant program was born. Ataru is the test pilot for the savant program. They raised him memorizing all sorts of crime information, makes and models of guns, vehicles, and more. Ataru notices his passport and holds it up saying you can fly on a plane with that. Larry takes it from him and tells Ebina that unfortunately, the development of Ataru’s output did not go well.

So why was Ataru brought to Japan? Larry says that he noticed Ataru had a nostalgia towards Japan. Ebina translates “nostalgia” as being homesick. Might as well says that. Larry and the others worked hard to wash Japan out of Ataru’s head, but it just didn’t work. Thus Larry came up with the idea to bring Ataru to Japan to do his training.  This whole time, Ataru is trying to get his passport back. Larry then says that Ataru has achieved good results with Ebina and he asks her to continue using Ataru to solve cases. Larry will even put in a formal request if necessary. Ebina quickly interjects that she’s the wrong person for the job as she will quit soon.

Sawa learns that there is nothing odd in the autopsy to suggest that Himura’s death wasn’t in line with the fire. So was it a suicide after all? Meanwhile, Larry wishes to know why Ebina is thinking of quitting. Ebina reveals that she hates a job that does not investigate a case if it’s not of a criminal nature. Of course, Ebina wishes to investigate all case to the max until she has achieved a satisfactory answer (whether its an accident, suicide, or murder). Larry then invites Ebina to join his team so she and Ataru can make certain there are no more discarded cases. He then gives Ebina Ataru’s passport so Ataru can be taken out of custody (they needed to know his real identity for this). Larry is then told about the fire in Nerima and he offers to escort Ebina and Ataru there.

Larry drops Ataru and Ebina off and asks Ebina one more time to join the savant program. Ebina commits to nothing and goes off while Larry’s pleasant smile fades to a darker look. Inside the station, Nozaki complains that the outsider and Ebina are back again. Matsushima rushes to hug Ebina and she knocks him away, sending pictures flying. Ataru quickly processes the flying pictures and accepts the mission.

Ebina then quickly joins in the questioning of Himura’s mother. Afterward, Ebina talks to Kuroki saying that suicide just doesn’t sound right. Mrs. Himura said her son had called home saying he was clearing up a problem and returning with a girlfriend. Nozaki keeps shooting all of this down, but I agree that its strange given what Himura’s mother said. Ebina then recalls the day her mom died and how happy she looked and how she talked about something good happening later. Snapping back to the present, Ebina says to herself that a person who says something so happily just before they die would not kill themselves. Ebina then gets a call from forensics.

Why? Ataru is bugging Ishikawa who is looking at photos taken of the crime scene and victim. Ataru finally manages to snatch a picture away as Ebina walks in. Ishikawa snatches it back and complains that Ataru keeps grabbing at the photos. Ataru then points to a photo and says the eyes are red, really red. They are redder than they should be. Ishikawa exclaims that is a common result of being burned alive. Freaky. Ebina grabs it and says the eyes really are  very red.

Sawa goes to visit Inukai. When the heck did he get back from his abduction? But Inukai is acting very strange and very un-Inukai like. They go to Inukai’s favorite after work haunt and Sawa lets Inukai know about Fukudome’s arrest as Inukai’s career also suffered tons of setbacks from helping Sawa and Atsumi that day after Fukudome ran out. Inukai’s blasé reaction as Sawa stunned. The waitress then brings Sawa a drink with gin in it. Since Sawa is on duty, he gives the alcohol to Inukai who recalls the abduction, freaks out and smashes the glass against the wall. Then in rushes Ebina and Ataru;. Inukai recognizes Inoguchi Ataru immediately shocking both Ebina and Sawa who asks who Ataru is. Ebina says it is Chokozai’s real name and olds up his passport. Chokozai takes it back and Sawa asks how Inukai knew. Inukai recalls being beaten at the embassy and seeing the passport. He then freaks out and passes out. What the heck did they do to the poor man to have him so altered?

Sawa takes Inukai back to the station. When he wakes up, Sawa asks him what happened. Inukai apologizes and says he must be drunk. Sawa laughs. How can Inukai be drunk when the man hasn’t drank any alcohol that day? Inukai then gets up and takes his leave. The flummoxed Sawa goes after and stops him. How did he know Chokozai’s really name. Inukai ignores him and watches Ataru’s favorite detective show on his mobile while walking out. Ebina then rushes up to discuss Ataru’s hint, but Sawa does NOT want to hear about that. Instead, he wishes to concentrate on the new mystery at hand—Ataru and Larry.

Ebina tells Sawa everything Larry said and Sawa asks about the Synchronized Swimming Detective and Inukai. Ebina has no idea what Sawa’s talking about. All he needs to hear is that Larry is an FBI agent currently at the US Embassy and Sawa rushes out. Meanwhile, Larry learns that the savant program only has a month left. Thus Larry must gather as much raw data as he can in a month to guarantee that the program continues. Ebina goes to Atsumi who cannot figure out what Ataru’s words mean either. What about the really red eyes?

Sawa confronts Larry about Inukai who plays innocent. He has no idea who that is. Liar. Sawa then shows him a picture of a drunken Inukai. Larry again insists he doesn’t know him. Sawa then threatens to have him questioned at the station. Larry points out that he has immunity and Sawa points out that Ataru did not have his passport until now so that means Larry must have had it with him and Inukai managed to see it and learn Ataru’s identity, so Larry is obviously lying. Sawa is one sharp cookie! Me love him. He’s awesome in a totally different way from Chokozai’s and Ebina’s awesomeness. Sawa then refuses to give up Ataru’s guardianship until Larry confesses. Larry points out that is illegal and Sawa (who has the upper hand since Ataru’s passport is in his hands now) states that he doesn’t know why Larry wants to use Chokozai, but in Japan you can’t do whatever you want. The gauntlet has been thrown.

Kitamura KazukiEbina continues investigating on her own. She learns that Himura and the deliveryman who reported the fire had a big fight earlier. Meanwhile, Chokozai is out walking around and playing with his rat toy, twirling it like usual when the body detaches from the tail and goes flying. Chokozai immediately looks for it and finds it, losing the tail in the process. Awww. Poor Chokozai. That rat toy has a very big significance to him. Not only did it break, but he lost part of it.

Sawa meets with Ebina and says that Larry is NOT a blood relative of Chokozai’s. Ebina says they have already confirmed the two entered the country together, so they should release Chokozai to Larry. Sawa refuses. In fact, he wishes to find Ataru’s real parents. Will the mystery surrounding Ataru’s past finally be revealed? Ebina goes to call Larry for Ataru’s parents’ information, but Sawa says he does not trust Larry. Me neither. Sawa then asks about the fire case. Ebina reports what she learned about the deliveryman. He is brought in for questioning and Ebina wishes to help, but Sawa tells her to go home. At that time she gets a call saying Chokozai disappeared again!

Sawa questions the deliveryman to find out that he and Himura fought over him breaking the intercom. The man is constantly afraid of breaking one and getting in trouble, so he always knocks, but Himura ordered him to use the intercom and wouldn’t you know? It broke. We then learn that this delivery boy is special. His body gives off electricity. That’s what the lights go wonky and other electrical devices, too. Supposedly, this is a real, documented and rare condition.

Ebina goes into Chokozai and Sawa’s apartment and there sits Chokozai. Mr. Ebina is shocked. When did the missing boy get back. Ataru holds his tailless mouse and laments its incompleteness. Mr. Ebina asks Ebina to fix it for Chokozai and she says her sewing leaves a lot to be desired. Mr. Ebina then recalls she actually got zeroes in sewing class. Wow. That’s REALLY bad. Still, Ebina does offer and Chokozai stuffs his beloved toy back in his bag. Guess he doesn’t want Ebina’s poor skills working on it. Chokozai looks at his flowers while Ebina calls Sawa and lets him know Chokozai is in the apartment. Sawa and Ebina go to the deliveryman’s house where his mom snaps at his father. It’s not an ability, but a disability. They’ve all had a tough time because of this. The poor boy can’t help the way he was born.

At the Ebina house, Mr. Ebina and Sho are unhappy to learn the deliveryman is even refused treatment at hospitals and the like. That’s not right. Pictures from the scene are on the table once again and Chokozai notices something. He then doodles with ketchup on the fried egg. He talks about the red part of the skull what does that mean?

Matsushima reveals that Larry is the consultant for the Synchronized Swimming Detective drama. Seriously? Well, I thought that he might have been involved in that drama, but you never know (I swear the female lead resembles one of his female lackeys almost). Sawa thinks there is more to the story and asks Matsushima to see what else he can find. Meanwhile, Ebina relays Ataru’s new message to Atsumi who has an idea. Does he really know what Chokozai is referring to? Apparently he does. Ebina goes before Naka to plead for a 2nd autopsy. Naka says the initial findings do not point to murder. Ebina then says that the capillaries are not prone to burst due to high heat like blood vessels. Naka, recalling all the past cases Ebina has helped solve recently, actually gives Ebina the green light to hurry and request another autopsy from the family.

The deliveryman goes to Sawa and asks for him to keep quiet as the boy finally found a job that he can work at without worrying too much about his unique electricity problems. The boy really wants to work in the food industry, but there are too many electronics in that department (rice cookers, cash registers, etc.). You can actually see Sawa being really effected by the boy’s problems in this episode much like Ebina was in episode 6. Sawa then seeks out Ebina who is learning from Atsumi that Himura was strangled before the fire burned him, but the fire was still what did him in. Sawa comments about how yet another discarded mountain turned into  a criminal case. Ataru gets ready to go out and Mr. Ebina hands him a ticket so he can take public transportation. Ataru then notices the time on the watch. Detective drama time? Nope, it’s lunchtime. Ataru wants his hotdog.

Sawa gets Hiruma’s call log and sees there are a lot of calls to an Natsumi and Itoh. The team are then sent out to investigate just who those two are. Meanwhile, Mr. Ebina takes Ataru out to lunch at a roadside hotdog stand. Ataru says it isn’t a hotdog, but Mr. Ebina updates Ataru so he will eat the grilled hotdog. This flummoxes the van’s owner. The two sit down to eat and Ataru notices a sign on the van that says they are now hiring. Is he looking for a job? Somehow, I don’t think so.

Sawa finds Ebina at the burnt apartment and she says she brought Chokozai with her, but he’s gone! Nope, he’s scoping out the bathroom. He points out that there are different black molds. What does this clue mean? While they try to figure out the clue, Nozaki and Matsushima talk with Natsumi about Himura (this girl is looney and likes to talk like various famous actresses). She then reveals she isn’t Himura’s girlfriend as the man is just too stingy. She then said that if he got back the loan money from his friend Itoh, then she would go out with him. However, Itoh says that it was Himura who borrowed money from him. What’s the real truth?

Back at the apartment, Sawa gets updated on the progress and he and Ebina and Chokozai keep poking around. The two detectives both notice that Himura was a very thrify and economical man. Chokozai notices a thermometer remote and keeps saying that it is dry. Ebina looks and sees that the economical man had the heater up high. How strange. They then look at his electricity usage and it spiked around the time of his death. So what exactly happened?

Atsumi goes to the scene of the crime and reports that drying kerosene turns into vapor and thus can be combusted by a single spark. They then learn, thanks to Chokozai, that a spark by the body caused the fire. This makes Sawa suspect Kawabuko. He became irritated over the argument (and the possibility of losing his much needed job) and strangled Himura, poured the kerosene, and sent the electric wave. Ebina doesn’t like this theory as the poor boy has had a difficult life, but Sawa is right in saying they have to pursue all options.

Sawa goes to look for Kawabuko at his delivery company and witnesses the boy being fired as his unique problem has been discovered. Sawa intervenes and tries to get the owner to give Kawabuko a chance, but the man refuses. Poor Kawabuko. He didn’t ask to be that way. Sawa tries to cheer him up, but Kawabuko cries and walks away. I think this makes Sawa suspect him a little less.

Back at the apartment, Ebina is examining the broken light fixture using Atsumi as a step ladder. Poor Atsumi. Ataru then notices something off. He then points and says “from whom” over and over again and picks up the picture of the toasted  cell. Atsumi gets an idea and jumps up, dropping Ebina on her face. Chokozai’s expression at this…priceless. An incoming call would be enough to cause a spark which would set the apartment in flames thanks the kerosene and heater going full blast. Who was the person who made the last call? Itoh. So we learn Itoh is a liar. He was the one who borrowed money from Himura and NOT the other way around like he insisted. He eventually confesses to everything. In the end, it was the bathroom mold that gave him a way. He used a kerosene case that was stored in his bathroom which had different mold than what was in Himura’s bathroom.

I LOVED how Ebina was trying to be all serious and had the bandaid on her nose. It was so kawaii.

The case is solved and the criminal arrested. Ataru does his typical mission accomplished routine and passes out once again this time. Sawa and Ebina rush over to him and notice the blood on his fingernails and palm and tears. They take Chokozai to the hospital and Sho reveals that Chokozai did not fall asleep, he fainted. Fainting and sleeping are NOT the same thing, so Chokozai has not been resting properly all this long while. Not good. Sho explains fainting is a disruption of blood flow to the brain, but in Chokozai’s case he isn’t sure why. Sawa thinks its because of the stress of Chokozai solving cases. Sho says that’s a possibility. This makes Sawa even more determined not to trust Larry or release Chokozai to his care. Sho then pulls out a flyer and hands it Sawa. Apparently it was in Chokozai’s hood. What’s with him and putting important things in his hood?

I really loved how Sawa’s first response to learning about Chokozai fainting is to stop him from getting involved with cases. This really shows that Sawa cares about Chokozai’s well being. This cannot be said for Larry who wants to push Chokozai until his “oval” soul breaks.

The next day Sawa takes Kawabuko to the hotdog place. Everything is cooked on charcoal and there is no electrical devices that he could disrupt or break. It’s perfect for him! Kawabuko is so happy and thankful. To think there is someone who would help him. Sawa calls it penance for suspecting him. Do you see the theme? With this episode and the absolute pitch episode. It’s about people who are different being cut off from the world and not trusting anyone to understand or help, but when they open up to others, then others are willing to help and accept them for who the are. I don’t dislike this one as much as I did the pitch one. That episode just fell flat in many ways to me.

While Kawabuko immediately rushes in to learn the ropes, Sawa goes over to Ebina and Chokozai. Ebina wipes off all the ketchup that Chokozai got on his hand. Sawa looks at Kawabuko and wonders if it’s a body type, disability or ability, but no one is listening. Sawa then gets a call saying Chokozai’s parents have been found. Not in Nakakamata, but in Hachiouji. Chokozai hears this and says “there is no tail.” Any significance? Who knows?

I can’t wait to watch episode 9!!!!!!!! Thinks are coming to a head.


  • Yey! thank you much for the recap! Can’t believe there’s just one more episodes left? awwww, going to miss this show.
    In this episode, I like how Chokozai’s story is coming together in full circle—kind of almost there. 🙂 Him fainting is definitely not good. I hope the last episode will tell us who his parents are and if he gets to live a normal life. 🙂

    • I know! I am so curious to know the whole story now. And since there is supposed to be one episode left, what will happen with the Ebina mystery that Sawa is apparently involved in?
      I am even more curious as the previews for the final episode said something about “Ataru’s love story.”
      I feel that they may have been hinting at a love connection, but didn’t honestly think they’d have one. But love story doesn’t necessarily mean romance, right? Sawa, or Ebina needs to kick Larry’s booty for making poor Ataru suffer.

  • There is 11 episode of this series

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