Kozue Ogawa (Esumi Makiko) is a housewife and has been married to Hideo (Yanagiba Toshiro) for seven years. They don't have any children but as they live with her parents at their flower shop, everyday is still lively. She is happy with her life and her husband but she wonders if it is enough. From time to time, she is gripped by this doubt that she cannot raise with anyone.
Kozue starts a part-time job in the editing department of the magazine where she used to work. Her former colleague is now working hard as the editor-in-chief.
One rainy day, Kozue meets a young man. He is Takuma Fukazawa (Yamashita Tomohisa), a high school student. He seems somehow shrouded in sadness. He is a dance teacher. In the dance studio, there is just the two of them.
Takuma curls his hands around Kozue's body and his dance instruction begins. Their unexpected closeness causes Kozue to hesitate. With her heart pounding, she pushes Takuma's hands away and runs home. But the throbbing in her chest continues. It can't be. But what is this feeling? --TBS
Cast & Credits
Despite the premises though, there is something about this drama which made it into one of my favourites in its genre.
Perhaps because on further analysis it doesn't deal with falling in love with someone, but with learning to love oneself and appreciate the little, daily things one gives for granted.
Esumi Makiko is so beautiful here, one soon forgets the age gap. The story revolves around her, her internal struggle, her doubts, her self-esteem. Yamashita Tomohisa plays his part very well too, portraying a young man in that fragile phase between adolescence and adulthood in a very believable way.
Overall, a delightful, suave drama.
It's not your typical "older woman/younger man" themed "romance." It's all about the inner turmoil in our main lady and what love, relationships, monogamy, marriage, etc mean to various people in modern times.
The pacing is moderate, but perfect for this type of storytelling. The acting was good. I wasn't a huge fan of minimal eye contact (mostly from the leads) which is why the score is only a 7 on that. Sometimes I couldn't tell if they were trying to remember the lines or in character and uncomfortable making eye contact with the other player in the scene. I also really like how age played a large role in this, but it didn't weigh down the story at all, which makes me wonder if that was where some of the awkwardness came from. It totally works either way.
Other than that, the secondaries were ok, the family had interesting dynamics and the co-workers kept things lively when needed. There were no bad guys or good guys in this. Just people acting and reacting like people with honest emotions.
If you're looking for sweet and cuddly moments, this isn't the drama for you. If you're looking for a moral quandary regarding life and relationships then grab your bag of popcorn and settle in for a few hours of self debates.