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Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Erika Toda: "Gakeppuchi Hotel" drama episode four recap

 Also goes by the title Hotel on the Brink

Air Dates: April 15 to June 17, 2018 on NTV 10:30 Sunday nights    Episode rating: 7.0%

Main Cast:

Erika Toda as Sana Sakurai, GM of the struggling hotel
Takanori Iwata as Naoya Ukai, guest who was the GM of a prestigious hotel
Ikkei Watanabe as Masao Tokisada, hotel's deputy GM
Kosuke Suzuki as Akito Tanzawa, hotel auditor
Minami Hamabe as Haru Horai, assistant newbie chef
Tomoya Nakamura as Ryuji Eguchi, gambling hotel chef
Ryo as Kozue Edagawa, hotel's bartender who drinks on the job
Daichi Saeki as Yozo Hattori, hotel employee who doesn't seem to have a position
Mari Nishio as Naomi Yoshimura, hotel roomkeeper
Daisuke Miyagawa as Nagayoshi Abe, hotel roomkeeper
Chad Mullane as Pierre Tanaka, foreigner who is the hotel's bellhop
Cookie as Taishi Otawara, front desk clerk

Special guest star????

Rina Kawaei as Yuko Osanai, guest

 Watched the first four episodes rather quickly but stopped there for the time being as only up to episode eight has been subbed but will restart this show again in a few days. The main question I had going into this show was whether Rina would be a part of the cast or if her appearance in the third episode was just a one time deal, will leave the answer until the end.

 Mainly just one story to this episode but what a whopper it was. Sana the GM has learned that there will be a new business hotel opening in the area called Choko, as if the Inversao Hotel didn't have enough problems. But what shocked Sana and the staff more than anything else was that her trusted auditor Akito has handed in his resignation to go work there. Besides him the front desk clerk Taishi and the housekeeper Naomi have also resigned from their positions but the three will be staying on another week.
 Akito had been with the hotel since he was a teen and he had the most screen time by far this episode. The character is played by Kosuke Suzuki who has been in too many dramas to count, know most of you should remember him from the 'Liar Game' dramas and films. The person most worried about Akito leaving in the recently demoted deputy GM Masao. For many years he's been embezzling money from the hotel's loans, besides the loan officer at the bank only Akito knows what he's been doing but agrees to remain silent about it.
 While Sana wants to find a way to keep all three at the hotel the new deputy GM Naoya feels differently and says the trio should do what they want. He's scheduled interviews for the positions and wants all three to help out in finding their replacements. Wasn't a key event in this show but it did happen which involved the ex-head chef Ryuji. He had won his position back via a contest in the previous episode but told everyone his assistant Haru should remain the head chef until he felt he deserved to resume those duties again. Ryuji had quickly thought he was ready to be the head chef again and has been promoted back to his old position and he's turned over a new leaf though he does still love to gamble.

 For the most part all of the interviews bombed, though there were dozens of applicants none were suited to be a front desk clerk or housekeeper. The final interviewee was a successful person though and he had said he was invited by Naoya to attend. This was an older gentleman by the name of Osanai who seemed to be overqualified to take over Akito's job as the hotel's auditor. Osanai had been a developer for many decades and had become rather wealthy, he told the staff building strip malls has left him as a cold person and he wishes to serve the public.
 So one person, Osanai, passed an interview and Akito is training him to do his job. The pair hit it off quite nicely and talk about so many other things than what Osanai's duties will be. Their final get together is very memorable and the scene had to last over ten minutes. Akito was having second thoughts about leaving the hotel and Osanai was encouraging him to remain though by this time it was too late for Akito.
 Akito does want to stay but is keeping that fact secret for now, on the other hand Taishi and Naomi had withdrawn their resignations. Both had been close to some fellow staff members who begged them to stay, that wasn't the case for Akito who admitted he was a bit lonely in his job. Know I'm zooming through this recap but those scenes between Akito and Osanai did last a long time and they kind of rehashed the same things over and over. On to the final scene where Naoya has prepared a going away party, originally it was for three workers but now it's just for Akito.

 When Sana refers to Supotaro above she's talking about the hotel's lucky turtle(?). It had gone missing and one reason for Akito wanting to leave the hotel was that he thought none of the staff cared about the turtle. He had cared so much about the creature and one reason was because he admitted to the staff at the end that he was lonely at his job. While everyone else had a partner to work with he didn't and just had his lucky turtle to talk to.
 Don't tell Ryuji the turtle is lucky, him and Haru were the ones to find it and he thought it meant he'd be lucky. Sadly for him he was rather unlucky as he bet and lost one million yen(!) on a boat race, he's become a dedicated worker but still has his gambling problem. Back to Akito and his farewell party is about to commence. The person to always watch out for is Naoya, he didn't show it but he had a trick up his sleeve which he revealed at the party.

 Naoya had known that Osanai was a developer but the staff didn't know what his current project was. In a huge surprise at the party Osanai revealed he was the developer for the new Choko Hotel! He had accepted Naoya's offer to come and see how the Inversao Hotel ran. While there Osanai had second thoughts about building a new hotel as he saw how close the staff was and had taken such a liking to Akito.
 At the party Osanai dropped his own bombshell which was that he stopped the project and there will be no business hotel to give them competition. No worries for Akito either as his position is still there if he wants it which of course he did, Naoya may come off as a bumbling young fool at time but he knows what he's doing. Hasn't started to happen yet but sooner or later the hotel has to become more successful as there's only six shows to go.
 In the waning moments an event happened which pleased Nao's heart to no end. Making an appearance at the end of the party was the guest from the third episode, Yuko. She was played by Rina and she loved being a housekeeper so much when Nagayoshi was training her. She applied for a position and unknown to Sana Naoya had offered her a job which she'll begin in the next episode.

 Hope I didn't rush through the recap too quickly, all of the key details were included. When I do two of these in a row my brain becomes a tad mushier towards the end and am looking to wrap thins up as soon as possible. Another solid show but thought the previous two were better and too much of this episode concentrated on one character. Will be back sometime next week with the next two recaps and will finish this series before I begin posting about another one.

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