Garasu no Ie Episode 4 Recap

You know…watching this drama when you are in a foul mood does little to amend that fact. I am not feeling the best today and then I get to watch Kazu bully his wife and sons. Joy. I’m liking him less and less. Sure he’s insecure, but he’s also an abuser and a snob. No, he doesn’t resort to physical abuse, but he’s verbally and mentally abusive and I just want to hit him betimes.

Okay, so even though the Shibusawa family makes it a point to eat breakfast as a family every morning and act like everything is okay, everyone knows that isn’t a case, but rather a huge farce. Rei knows that Kazu is being mean and cold of late (thanks to getting drunk and accidentally falling asleep in Hitoshi’s room) and Hitoshi is well aware of how they are all keeping up a pretense. I do like Rei’s and Hitoshi’s camraderie. Even though Hitoshi has feelings, he’s not forcing them or acting on them and genuinely does have interest in Rei’s thoughts and feelings. I liked the kitchen moment when Rei said she made a special porridge for the first of the year and Hitoshi had no idea what she was talking about. Of course, his father and brother know.

Annoyance Point #1—Family Breakfast:

  • Kazu picking on Rei’s cooking by complaining of the salt content and when Hitoshi says it’s good, Kazu saying he wasn’t complaining it tasted bad just that there was too much salt. Then Kenji makes his taste comment which makes Kazu angrily disregard his youngest son for not being in the same profession.

Annoyance Point #2—Decorations:

  • As the Shibusawa men are leaving for work, Kazu asks Rei how long she’ll leave the decorations out. Rei replies the 15th of the month and Kazu sternly tells her that in the Shibusawa house, everything is down on the 7th. Eyeroll.

Hitoshi is on his way to the station when Kenji dashes by. Hitoshi thinks that his younger brother is the only one who can still smile and is probably still happy. Hitoshi breaks into a grin when he sees Kenji still at the station. Missed his train, huh? Yep. Kenji then asks if Hitoshi likes Rei. Hitoshi isn’t really committal on this topic and quickly changes it. This causes Kenji to again comment on how alike Hitoshi and their father is. This immediately evokes Hitoshi’s ire. He does not like to be compared to his father nor to be found identical to Kazu. Kenji then surprises him by saying he will never forgive Hitoshi if his older brother does anything to ruin their father’s happiness. Hitoshi realizes that despite Kenji’s out appearance, he’s actually quite worried inside.

Rei watches a debate between the Prime Minister (PM) and  Muraki and recalls Hitoshi’s words about Muraki’s reform and how he is an enemy in Kazu’s eyes. Meanwhile, after the debate, the PM meets with Kazu and is worried about approval ratings and doing something now to appease the public to try to counteract Muraki’s gaining popularity. Kazu’s response to this really made me annoyed again. Needless to say I don’t really agree with him. He’s showing an arrogance and a blatant disregard to the citizens of his own country. Shouldn’t he be worrying if they make the populace suffer needlessly through greed and other mismanagement?

Annoyance Point #3—Politics & Family:

“Whether Japan’s citizens suffer, whether support ratings fall, you’re doing what you should be doing and all you need to do is continue doing that—we’ll fix all the other problems.

“People don’t follow those who only say things everyone wishes to hear. If you say nine things they don’t want to hear, and then one thing that they do, they will be moved and will be putty in your hands. It’s the same for work colleagues, citizens, your wife, and even your children.”

Hitoshi runs into Morita at the ministry and asks his good friend to arrange a meeting with Muraki as Hitoshi wishes to ask the politician to come to one of his informational meetings in support of Muraki’s reform in order to talk. Morita says he is only a reporter, but Hitoshi earnestly asks him to. Morita, I think, partially agrees to this request as it is the first sign of Hitoshi really rebelling and going against his father.

We then cut to Rei trying to get rid of the holiday decorations outside and cutting her finger and then her talking about how different the two brothers are, etc. She also talks about how she has nothing but that house. Keeping up with the demands of the meals and all the cleaning and that fireplace (that Kazu’s first wife was so in love with) takes up all of her time. And while Rei is doing the housework and contemplating her new life, Nanami is doing her research on the plane crash and Rei.

Hitoshi meets with Morita and gets good news that Muraki will meet with him. Hitoshi then gets a shock to learn that Muraki is a member at Onaka’s gym (where the meeting will be). So that is why Sano is always hanging out there. Things begin to click more and more with Hitoshi.

Hitoshi meets with Muraki on the treadmills the next day and is shocked when Muraki so easily accepts his request to speak at a meeting. He is even more shocked when Muraki encourages him to join his political party. Hitoshi is quick to turn him down, though as he believes that when Muraki takes office as the next PM, he will need bureaucrats behind him to carry out his ideas. Muraki laughs at this and says that Hitoshi still reveres his father. Hitoshi is quick to say that is not the case. Well…we can’t lie—Hitoshi and his father do share a lot of the same traits in certain respects, but I think Kazu has gone to a different extreme than his eldest son. Of course all this is witnessed by the ever-watching Onaka.

After the meeting, Hitoshi goes outside and finds Nanami there to pick him up thanks to Morita’s big mouth. Hitoshi refuses the ride until Nanami promises to talk about Rei’s “dark” secret. So the two go to a coffee shop where Nanami says she’s been investigating the accident and Rei’s past. Apparently after Rei’s parents died relatively young, she was sent to her aunt and uncle’s. And wouldn’t you know her aunt, uncle, and cousin all died young as well after her arrival. Rei’s remaining family then washed their hands of her as they were too frightened of the “scary” woman. Geez. They should be feeling sorry for her, not considering her a harbinger of bad things. Nanami then urges Hitoshi to leave the Shibusawa house before Rei destroys it and promise to protect him. Shakes head. I don’t like her more and more.

Kazu stops by Onaka’s and she tells him about Muraki and Hitoshi meeting and then Hitoshi’s meeting with Nanami. She calls Hitoshi a man who is just like his father—using women to his advantage. Kazu insists that this will be their last meeting and Onaka smiles and says he always says that. She goes to email him the pictures, but it bounces. Kazu coldly tells her he changed his phone number and email address and that he is officially severing all ties. Onaka is not happy. Hasn’t she been spying on Muraki all the time for him?

Kazu leaves without a backward glance and when he gets to the stairs leading up to his house, he recalls playing games with Hitoshi and Kenji. Doesn’t he understand that he’s part of the problem? His insecurities and jealousies and disregard for others’ feelings is what is putting the distance between him and his sons and his wife. He then runs into Hitoshi who is surprised to find his father walking instead of being driven home. As they continue up the stairs, Kazu tries to convince Hitoshi to do another omiai and Hitoshi stands firm in refusing as he doesn’t want to hurt his father’s reputation by being continually rejected.

As soon as Kazu is in the house, he seeks out Rei and gives her a back hug. Hitoshi changes clothes and goes downstairs where he sees Rei’s injured finger. She explains how it happened and goes back to whatever it is that she’s doing. Hitoshi intently stares at her and silently comments about how unhappy she seems to be in comparison to when she first moved in nearly a year ago. Rei catches him staring and asks what it is, but he says nothing. He also wonders why he himself is still living at his house. Later, Hitoshi stars at the relative’s card that Nanami gave him. What will he do? And poor Sano is threatened by Kazu. If Sano cannot get the ministry of justice after Muraki, then Kazu will see to it that Sano’s career is over. Poor, Sano.

Annoyance Point #4—Kazu’s Response to Rei Wanting a Job:

After threatening Sano, pamphlets catch Kazu’s eyes. Kazu picks them up and goes into the bedroom with a smile and asks Rei about them. She confesses that she finds it lonely to be confined solely to the house with only cleaning and cooking to do, so she was thinking of getting some type of work. Kazu’s smile disappears and he coldly asks just who Rei thinks she is. With her age and education, who would hire her? If she has time on her hands, then she should put it to use by bettering herself like by learning a foreign language. He then proceeds to throw the information out. Jacky. He’s completely cutting her off from the world and then he belittles and bullies her and reminds her that the only place she has is by his side. Major Jacky.

Time passes and Rei is more and more quiet and withdrawn while Hitoshi is meeting with Muraki every morning to jog. Kenji has successfully taken his bar exams and is just awaiting the results in September. As it so happens, Kazu’s birthday roles around and Rei asks the boys to help her celebrate it. Thus a shopping trip. Kenji and Hitoshi join her to pick out a gift for their father. Kenji votes on slippers and then runs out to meet a friend, leaving the two alone. Hitoshi knows that his younger brother is testing him. Thus he and Rei have a great time trying to pick out a present for Kazu. In the end, the two decide to go with Kenji’s original suggestion of slippers (this was after Rei and Hitoshi talked about their first meeting in a sweater store and Hitoshi asks why she doesn’t wear the sweater any more and Rei recalls Kazu’s order).

The two walk home and Hitoshi, recalling Nanami’s words, starts questioning Rei about her past. Rei is open about the accident and her moving in with her aunt and uncle. The treated her as if she was their own daughter and she was very appreciative and happy about that. The only problem was her cousin wasn’t so happy to have her around and have her treated so well. Thus her cousin stopped coming home and got into an accident and died when she was only 17. After that, it was like her aunt and uncle wanted to follow their daughter in death. They took ill and died. Rei blames herself—that it was her fault all this unfortunate mess happened. Hitsohi is quick to tell her that is not the case. Rei then explains this is why she wants to work hard to make Kazu, Kenji, and Hitoshi happy. Hitoshi is also quick to respond that he is happy that Rei has come to the house. Be that as it may, Rei is not stupid and senses that since her arrival, things have changed…and not necessarily for the better. Thus the birthday party—she wants to be one, big, happy family.

Rei happily works hard on her party preparations. She is happy to learn that Kazu will be home relatively early so they can all celebrate his birthday as a family. Kazu’s good mood completely disappears when Sano mails him pictures of Hitoshi meeting Muraki and Hitoshi and Rei’s conversation when they bought him a present. The man is jealous and angry. There really, at this point, is not a reason for him to be. Right now, I really think Rei only regards Hitoshi as a companion, family member, and friend…not as a romantic interest. But Kazu is nothing if not an unreasonable man. It really makes me wonder how he was with his first wife.

While Rei is busy preparing for the party, Kenji gets knocked into in a crowd and gets injured. Nanami runs into him at the hospital when she was visiting a fellow writer. She tells him that he’s lucky to be alive. I’m guessing she’s going to tell him all about the Rei “curse.” We then cut to Rei having everything ready only to have no one show up like they were supposed to. Ouch. So much for trying so hard.

When Hitoshi finally gets home he finds Sano loitering around their house. The man asks if Kazu is home and Hitoshi says he should be and goes to get his father, but Sano thinks better and goes to head off, but not before telling Hitoshi to watch out for his father and to apologize to Kazu on his behalf since Sano can no longer do anything for him. Hitoshi takes the nervous man inside and demands an explanation to everything.

Sano confesses a little bit to Hitoshi and Rei, but not a lot as Kazu comes home. The frightened Sano immediately hides, but reluctantly comes out. He wishes Kazu a happy birthday and runs out of the house. Kazu asks why he was there and Hitoshi lies and says it was just to see Hitoshi. Kazu doesn’t really believe this and we get a nice big argument. Surprise, surprise. Hitoshi asks for answers and explanations. Nothing which Kazu wishes to give. He goes to head upstairs since his birthday has been ruined and demands Rei bring him champagne.

Annoyance Point #5—Kazu’s Idea of Love:

Angry, Rei demands her husband to answer Hitoshi’s questions and even asks him again about seeing Onaka (since Hitoshi mentioned Kazu had Onaka spy on Muraki). Kazu once more throws her disloyalty into her face. Why can’t she be silent and trust him? Rei then talks about how he never talks to her at all. How can she trust him? Kazu’s response again made me wish to hit him as hard as I am able to. He says that he married her for love instead of a business arrangement (like he’s trying to get HItoshi to do). If he loves her, then why doesn’t he talk about his job or answer any of her questions? He gives her a home, financial security, social status, and even a family. Oh, and he gives her plenty of love—isn’t that enough, must she get greedy when she’s of a lower level? I must’ve missed the love part because all I see is obsession, control, abuse, and degradation. I do admit to liking Hitoshi’s comeback.

“Love is not something that you ‘give,’ it’s something you share together.”

Of course Kazu scoffs at his son’s “idiocy”before going upstairs. Rei thanks Hitoshi before going outside to cry. Hitoshi joins her and she reminds him that they are sad on nights with beautiful moons (referring the night Kazu told them both to get out of the house if they can’t trust him and Rei did run out). Hitoshi then asks Rei to leave the house with him as it isn’t true they have nowhere to go. Awwww. It was so hard for him to say that. Of course baby brother overhears this and is not happy at all. Understandable really. But Kenji can’t honestly think anyone in that house is happy right now.

One comment

  • I feel the same way with Kazu. He’s one of the most annoying characters I have come to watch in a Jdrama. This spineless, insecure yet idealistic ‘public servant’ has no conscience at all. He think of his wife as a plaything, to display… he’s also in denial. I can understand if Rei would elope with Hitoshi.

    Why stay with a fat, insecure guy when there is a young man who will love you much more? Though, some financial security is absolutely a factor for Rei… She seems helpless given the kind of situation she’s in….

    I love the actress playing Hitoshi’s fiancee, but i absolutely hate her character…. LOL 🙂

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