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Sunday, March 4, 2018

"Wakako Zake" drama season one: Episodes five and six recaps

 Air Dates: January 8th to March 26, 2015 at 11:30 pm, Thursdays on TV Tokyo
 Theme song "The future scenario is up to you" by Charan Po Rantan

Main Cast:

 Rina Takeda as Wakako Murasaki
Kinuwo Yamada as Mii-san
Mizuki Watanabe as Abe-san
Yoshihro Nozoe as Taisho
Kenta Kamakari as Aoyagi

 Guest Stars

Episode five

Daikichi Sugawara as Kuma

Episode six

Maya Homaoka as Miki
Kaya Hioki as Honami
Seikei Yamada as Eriko

 That video above sees to be the only promo one for this season so will just leave it for all of these recaps. Listed the guest stars for the first time as all four above did have a lot of screen time, that's a change from the first four shows where Rina was on screen 95% of the time. Kaya Hioki has been around a while, she changed her name from Asano to Hioki back in 2013. Have found zero info about Seikei who was quite a cutie in the sixth episode. On to the pair of recaps and the title for the fifth episode is....

'Manta Ray Fin'

 Never a quiet day at the office for Wakako. It's either ultra busy or she's getting berated by her boss, in this episode it was the former. It being so busy meant that Wakako had to take a late lunch, instead of a regular meal after work she only needs something light but of course an alcoholic beverage or two would hit the spot.
 Today's new Izakaya was Sakurachika, all of the places Wakako stops at are her first time visiting the establishment. Wakako was at a loss on what would be a tasty light meal until she noticed a man sitting a few stools down from her. The patron was feasting on Manta Ray Fins, hence the title of this episode. The Japanese certainly eat much differently than we do in the frosty North, have learned many new foods but doubt if many stores in the area carry them.
 Manta sounds like a wise choice to digest so that's her order. Naturally a drink must accompany her food, the vast majority of time it's Sake which Wakako ordered once again. There are so many varieties of the drink, today's selection was Kanemasu Red. As in every show Wakako goes into her own world savoring the taste, to date every dish she's had has been absolutely perfect.

 The man to the right of Wakako is ordering another dish which catches her eye. Up next for the man who is named Kuma are Roasted Ginkgo Nuts which is another food I've never heard of. It's in a shell and you crack it open with an obvious tool called a nutcracker. The nut itself is green in color yet still a bit hard, looked tempting and just by watching Wakako's facial expressions we knew it was good.
 Same length as the other episodes at 22:45 yet it was a bit shorter as much of the scene in the Izakaya was shot twice but from a different perspective. In the second part of the same scene we saw more of the man Kuma who had impressed Wakako with what he ordered. Kuma has a daughter about the same age as Wakako but has been a bit estranged from her, as he silently observes Wakako he makes a vow to patch things up with her. Kuma even gives Wakako his lighter as he noticed her observing two men using one to heat up the thin slices of Manta Ray.
 As a youngster Wakako's father wouldn't let her use his lighter to heat up the fish. Kuma had an inkling about that which is why he let Wakoko use and keep his, heating up the thin fish slices seemed to be one of the highlights of her recent life. Wakako is also a bit estranged from her father, he had sent her a text message in the beginning of the show but she couldn't find the right message to send him. That is until the end of the show where she sent her father something very simple, 'Kuma gave me his lighter' and with that the episode came to a close.

 Another fine show and every one to date will recommend but think the next episode was the best and the recap for that is after more screenshots from this show. The Izakaya visited today as all the others is a real restaurant in Tokyo, name of the eatery is Sakurachika and we saw a bit of the real life chef who prepared Wakako's meal.

 Episode six: 'Girls' Night'

 Huge difference for this show as for the first time we didn't see Wakako at work or visiting a new restaurant. Instead Wakako and two friends of hers visit another person's house, up to now never knew Wakako had any friends. Wakako's two mates Eriko and Honami joined her in dropping in to see another friend who is slightly older and married, Miki. Seems as though this was the first time the quartet has been together for ages and what a fun time they had in their reunion.
 Main dish, though there were other treats, was Takoyaki which is made with Octopus and various other ingredients which depends upon one's taste. Learned many new things about the dish which I have tried and it was tasty but hadn't seen it made from scratch. There's a special pan for it, you start cooking the original batter with Octopus and then start adding in the ingredients, least that's how it looked to me plus you flip when it's about 3/4 done.
 Even among her friends Wakako was such a joy to watch while eating. She was silent but we could hear her thoughts and she was savoring every bite like it would be her last one. One of Wakako's gifts for the meal was beer, to her one cannot partake in a meal without an alcoholic beverage. That wasn't the only drink she brought as later on she whipped out a bottle of Sake!

 As mentioned have no info on Seikei Yamada who played Eriko, what a cutie she is and was the youngest of the four or it seemed so to me. Eriko was such a prankster as she hid a cellphone and pulled a few other gags. You can see above the quartet was really getting into the Takoyaki but there other variations of it coming up. Wakako had brought some cheese with her, none of the other had tried it that way but Wakako assured them they'd fall in love with the flavor which they did.
 Wakako has retained the knowledge she's gained from eating so often though she didn't tell her friends that. When the Takoyaki became cold Wakako suggested deep frying it, once again the other gals swooned over the taste of her suggestion. The four did do much talking but we learned very little about Wakako or her friends. Wakako has been a bit of a mystery, never knew she had friends outside of work and for some reason have a feeling she may have a long lost love from the past.

 That above dish as noted is Avocado Caprese salad, yet another food I had never heard of. Miki created many of those small dishes to go with the main meal, as you can also see the gals were shocked when Wakako suggested having cheese Takoyaki. From what the other three said it tasted slightly similar to pizza, will be willing to try it out if any viewers wish to make it for me.
 Besides the beer and Sake that Wakako brought Miki brought out a bottle of Potato Shochu, like Sake that drink comes in many varieties. Unlike the other three who were just sipping their drinks Wakako doesn't know the word sipping and may have drank as much as the other three combined. However still haven't seen Wakako drunk yet, she does have a high tolerance for alcohol so perhaps we never will.
 The eating and conversation went on for the remainder of the episode, though they didn't talk about anything serious still found it enjoyable and have been viewing many of these 'gal pow-wows' lately. It's getting late according to the friends, it's almost 11:00 pm and Miki is expecting her husband home soon who had hit the town with his buddies. So with that the three girls head on their way home and wonder if Wakako brought along the unfinished beer and Sake????

 No promo for an Izakaya to end the show off with as the girls ate in though there was a bit of talk on how to make the dishes that were shown. Quickly am halfway through this drama and have enjoyed every minute of it, so down to earth and Wakako is such a likable character. Probably won't have the next pair of recaps until Thursday as there's two other series you'll be hearing about first with the episode four recap of 'Lupinrangers' up next. Don't know what got into me but have been playing AKB during this write-up, they had so many fabulous tunes years ago, so many it's hard to pick out just one fave or even ten....

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