Hakuba no Ouji-sama Episode 5 Recap
This drama is…slow. It’s not painfully slow. Nor is it amazingly exciting. This drama is going for a more deeper feeling I think and while it isn’t failing…it’s kind of preachy. Not in an over-the-top way that totally turns me off…but it’s there. It’s nice to have dramas with messages, but overt ones are a little more off-putting than strong messages hidden in nuances.
I feel like nothing really happened in this episode save for we really learn a different between men and women and what they value. It’s not surprising that men and women have different values at all. For Hara, it was horrible to be caught by her ex-lover in a hoodie with hair pulled back and sweatpants, for Kurosawa, it was horrible for him to get caught by his ex-lover being nagged at by his wife. Different values. For Hara, even though Ozu called her “Kaori” at the end of the night when he was in his drunken stupor, she was still happy by the connection and fun they had together that night, while Ozu just focused on the fact that he couldn’t remember a thing that happened and didn’t even care to let Hara know he had fun, too. Different people, different sexes, different perceptions.
So, Hara gets Ozu safely inside and in bed where he hugs her to him and calls her “Kaori.” This snaps Hara back to the harsh reality that her time with Ozu is simply platonic and very temporal. She had this one fun night while Kaori gets all the emotional investment and love. Hara is nice and does take off Ozu’s tie so he doesn’t choke in his sleep before leaving.
The next day Hara immediately wakes up thinking of Ozu and wondering if he’s okay after the other night, but she can’t bring up the courage to call him. Meanwhile, Ozu wakes up in bed with no idea of what happened the previous night after they left the bar. He vaguely recalls Hara showing up at his apartment door telling him to get it together, but nothing after that. He then finds a strand of her long hair on his pillow. WHAT HAPPENED!!!??? He immediately thinks he might have done something untowardly.
Hara gets called out by her mother who tries to set Hara up with the publisher in charge of her publicity. Hara does not bite and is upset by her mother only “forcing” marriage down her throat whenever they talk of late. Hara then says she’s leaving as she has plans for the day off. Her mother yells after her to bring the man home sometime then. LOL. Yeah…who to bring home? The married biology teacher she had an affair with or the engaged biology teacher she’s pining after? Such a dilemma.
While Hara was at her mothers, Ozu was talking with Imamura about the other night. His friend does little to help his anxiety and says that something definitely must have happened since Hara came up to the room and Ozu was drunk. Ozu does also quickly insist that nothing like that could have happened…probably. He then says that he just has this feeling he did something wrong. He then calls up Hara who was trying to compose a text to him and immediately apologizes. Hara cannot believe that he called her just to apologize when he can’t even remember what happened. She hangs up on him and deletes the message saying she had a great time. This makes Ozu believe that something really did happen as she was mad.
The next day at work, Ozu pulls Hara aside and apologizes once more. This time he hedges and says he’s sorry he was drunk and didn’t show her proper hospitality in his home. He then hands over the cab fare and wonders if he might have not paid his tab for all the drinks. Hara coldly assures him that is not the case and walks off. This makes Ozu worry even more about what happened for her to be so cold.
The girls are out drinking and get on the subject about how men and women are not on the same wavelength and value different things. The boys are having the same conversation…well…it’s mainly 30-year-old Egawa giving his younger friends advice about the different values between sexes. He pulls out a picture with Mai in it again and says that while he couldn’t really understand why Mai would go drinking and hang out with guys, he did get that she was lonely, thus when she heard someone say they had a great time, it always made her happy. Hearing this makes Ozu recall just how desperately lonely Hara is deep inside and makes him consider just how horrible he was to only care about what he couldn’t remember to the point he never bothered telling her he had fun.
Hara gets home and gets cleaned up to only realize she forgot to go grocery shopping. Early she had complained about how when she was young, living alone equaled independence, but now it’s just a large bother. So Hara quickly ties up her hair and puts on a hoodie. Does this mean her time as a woman is over since she doesn’t care if she’s being seen like that? Oh well. She is in the midst of shopping when she comes across Kurosawa and his wife and daughter. Kurosawa greets her and Hara is horrified to be caught dresses as she is. She then buys more groceries than she was originally going to so she can give off the feel that she is just fine and happy.
The next day Sano calls her into his office and tells her he has heard about her omiai as he has some random connection to the publishing house where the editor works. Hara is not happy to have this omiai talk come up at work. Later at lunch, Kurosawa finds her and says he did not go to that store because it was near her place, it was completely unplanned. Hara understands this and they both talk about their embarrassments of that night. Kurosawa then goes off on a tangent about the sense of taste and how even if something is made the exact same way, our brain perceives it differently based on memories tied to that food/taste. Um…his lectures just sound too weird for me and not natural. He leaves Hara to herself and she thinks about how he is someone she can always learn something new from. True.
Later Mori rushes into the biology prep room and demands Ozu arrange a goukon. This shocks Ozu. Why? Mori then talks about Hara’s omiai with a successful publisher. This startles both Ozu and Kurosawa in not pleasant ways. Mori insists she can’t be left behind if Hara marries someone of that caliber and again begs Ozu to try to arrange something with his old work mates. Ozu remains noncommittal, but does promise to think about it. The three then run into Hara and Mori asks about her upcoming omiai. Hara lies and says she is going on it. Afterward, she calls up her mother and demands a meeting.
Even though the man in pleasant enough and they do have love of literature in common…the whole thing isn’t to Hara’s taste. She only feels comfortable knowing people for long periods of time and then having those feeling develop naturally into something else. She later apologizes to her date and says she can’t do this. She then calls up mommy and says she will never do another omiai as she can’t force herself to like someone just for the sake of a wedding ring.
Kurosawa is at home eating dinner while his wife does dishes. One of the side dishes he’s given is an omelets and he recalls his speech to Hara. He begins to say the same thing to his wife who tells him to just eat. She can’t understand what he’s saying at all and doesn’t want to hear such trash as she was never much interested in school or learning. Ouch. I do wonder if Kurosawa really loved his wife when he married her or if he did do it more for her money and standing. I do get why he turned to Hara. She was attentive and willing to be taught and loved while his wife…not so much.
Hara decides she doesn’t want to go home to her empty apartment yet and goes back to the same convenience store where she bumped into Kurosawa the other night. Kurosawa sees her and pops out of his van. This time it is not coincidence—this time it has been planned. His time with her was the best time in his life for him and he really wishes to return to the way they were. If he throws away his family…would she return to his side? Hara thinks about how she has no immunity to such words. What will Hara choose?
I do have to say that even if Kurosawa loves Hara, it’s wrong for him to “throw away” his family. Sure, he can divorce his wife, that’s fine. Feelings change and there is no reason to stay in a relationship if it will only bring pain and misery to everyone. That being said…how can he throw his kids away? That would make me start to hate him if I was in a similar situation I think. Not having grown up with the benefit of either of my parents…it’s a sore subject and something I just can’t accept. There is also that double standard. He grew tired of his wife and cheated on her with Hara. What is to stop him from doing the same with Hara? I mean, sure happy relationships can be built out of cheating, but there is always that underlying worry of “what if…”