Amaama to Inazuma Episode 8: School and Stew
We go back to the traditional formula and make a squid stew this week. Why? Because it was something Tsumugi’s mother made that Tsumugi wants to eat again. This sparked up because of her school bag her mother made for her, and that topic was brought up because of the Bring your Parent to School Day.
I found it interesting, and odd, that Kouhei was the only father there. I would have expected at least to see another father there, but this might be another case of cultural differences. But first off, let’s not lie, societies around the world usually think that school and children-related things are usually the jobs for the mother to handle. This is a gender role that’s still seen today, but it’s been changing. Whenever there was Back to School Night for me (which is every year from K-12th), you’d see moms and dads in the classroom. For field trip chaperones, it’s either moms or dads. But this is me relating my experiences living in the United States. Maybe it’s with younger kids where mothers are more involved. But still! I’ve seen some videos and read some things about gender roles in Japan, and there are a lot of housewives, while the husbands are out working. I guess it’s different here where in the States, if only one parent is working the family is going to struggle because that won’t be enough to pay off bills and shit.
Anyway, where was I going with this? Oh. Yeah, I guess maybe I wasn’t too surprised to only see mothers at the preschool, with Kouhei being the lone dad. Half of me was, and half of me wasn’t. Back to the episode, I just felt bad for sensei because he was obviously a fish out of water as the mothers got together to talk about bags and other mom stuff. That’s when Kouhei noticed the stain on Tsumugi’s bag.
After a fun-filled day of games and marriage rejection, Kouhei asks Tsumugi if she’d like a new bag because of the stain on hers. Tsumugi’s expression changes and she holds her bag tightly. She doesn’t want a new one, because her bag was a bag her mother gave her. The last time Tsumugi mentioned her mother was in the first episode, when she told her father to write her mother a letter to send them food. My heart skipped a beat because I thought they were going to get into some emotional stuff with the mother, but they never really did. Tsumugi’s face showed that she really misses her mother, and now I want to see a flashback episode showing Tsumugi’s relationship with her mother. She has a great bond with her father, but I want to see how strong a bond that she had with her mother. And that gives us an excuse to see what exactly happened with the mother and how Kouhei coped and explained that her mother “went on a trip”, instead of the truth.
I would really love an episode all about the mother, and the family. How Kouhei and his wife met, when they had Tsumugi, growing up with Tsumugi, being happy, then the death of the mother, and just how Kouhei is dealing with his loss. I just want more of this!
Also, I wouldn’t mind an episode centered around Kotori. She’s a sweet and considerate girl but there’s still a lot we don’t know about her. We know she’s afraid of knives and that she has a bandaid on her finger, but we never saw how exactly the incident happened. We also don’t really know much about her family dynamic. We can guess that Kotori is alone most of the time since her mother is always working and their parents are divorced, so her father isn’t around. I’ve been saying this for awhile, but I’d like episodes that took a break from the cooking that would instead focus on the characters more. These episodes have been cute and relaxing, but I’ve been getting a little bored. I want something different, you know?
The food, as usual, looked delicious. While talking about the bag, Kouhei told Tsumugi that he would make any food that his wife used to make, and Tsumugi wanted a squid stew. So that night with Kotori, they make a very basic version of it and it turns out great. Also, instead of getting Tsumugi a new bag, Kouhei put an apple patch over the stain, and now it’s a bag “that Mommy and Daddy made together”. Aww.
So yes, character-centered episodes would be great. I hear from some manga readers that there’s a lot of emotional stuff coming up, but there’s only 4 episodes left so I don’t know if we’ll see any of it. I wish. :/