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Etsuko Makazukuro (?cm ?kg)
I do not swear. I use moisturizer for fun. I sit on a barrel-shaped decorative stool when I use my computer. I have used up several notebooks scribbling away. This dress can’t make me look fat.
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Hello! This was originally a place where I would catalog art that I wanted to comment on, but it has since expanded to a collection of “pieces” that I record for my own convenience. Aside from keeping track of things like how many pages I am through a book, I also continue to write comments and notes on the pieces I encounter. Thank you for viewing~♪

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あまちゃん
連続テレビ小説・第88作目
宮藤官九郎

初回は英語で、今回は弟と一緒に、日本語で。

The first time I watched Amachan, I was in a very different place. I frankly don’t remember this time very well, but Amachan had to do with a lot of themes I was interested in back then, so I decided that, perhaps, I’d finally watch a “boring” kind of show for once. 19 years old—I guess that’s about the time I still carried a latent guilty pleasure in watching anime. I didn’t have the patience for anything serious back then. I wouldn’t learn, I wouldn’t read, I wouldn’t sit down and work through anything. I don’t really know why. Part of me wants to say that I was just because I was still a kid growing into adulthood, but deep down I don’t believe in dividing lines like that. I simply had too much time to continue feeding off of my reputation and my ego: I didn’t try anything new because I could simply pretend everything was old to me. That’s right; I thought I was above everything. There was nothing worth seeing, nothing worth learning, and nothing worth understanding because I already saw through it all. It’s far away from me now, that feeling. I’m constantly confronted with the fact that I know so little, that I get so little, and that I have nothing yet worth sharing.

Amachan should be about the time I started changing the way I do things. I was already dealing with very big changes in my life, but this was a time where I really began to dedicate myself to learning. Satisfying the social itch had long become an exhausting endeavor, and whatever exhilarating features that had to offer were no longer important to me; my old priorities fell to pieces as I now faced the fact that I had to build myself up all over again to survive, and I couldn’t be happier doing so—years of misery could now be tossed to the side as I now began my journey into something honest and meaningful. I wouldn’t play a part; I’d be what parts are made out of.

I got hooked onto Amachan. It was a fundamentally simple show, and I didn’t understand what I really liked about it at all. Was it the same feeling as watching Non Non Biyori as a teenager? Non, but I was watching Non play Amano Aki with the same kind of honesty. I liked watching Amachan. I liked its world. I liked the silly characters and their mundane aspirations. The jokes, the themes, the lighthearted atmosphere surrounding a coming-of-age story that I probably desperately needed at the time. There was nothing to Aki, really, but everybody in the show insisted she had the kind of charm that changed them. I realize now that I probably feel the same way about her.

Aki is just a simple protagonist in a morning drama, and not one I could really relate to very much at all, but her influence is undeniable—she was growing up at the same time I was and blossomed in the show just as I was looking to do the same sort of thing. I don’t know if I’m there yet or if I’ll ever really be there, but even Amachan’s socially conservative harmonious and idyllic world mirrors the anxieties we leave with in our own world. The characters are individually not easy to relate to because they are, after all, things that appear on a screen and play back the author’s lines to one another, but they collectively relay things we encounter and deal with: In the second to last episode Mizuguchi talks about the Yui (the ant) fossilized by the village’s consciousness (amber). Yui has her own will, her own mind, her own decisions, but she is thrown about by her circumstances in so many unfortunate ways—why is it that she says Suzuka Hiromi had a harder time than Amano Haruko over all those years? It’s a feeling only she could have had, and a feeling that I don’t yet understand.

There are lots of things that we can’t understand in Amachan. It’s undeniably a simple show with simple, nearly archetypal characters, but there is a lot about it that isn’t easy for me to answer. I don’t understand this show yet—not completely. I don’t know what Kudo’s thought process was behind a lot of scenes. For a morning drama, it sure is a handful.

I came away enchanted by this show, and it wouldn’t be easy to go over how much it had meant to me when I watched it that Spring in 2020, but it is, like everything else, a fossil we can keep coming back to, keep thinking about, and continue to polish. Life will simply keep moving. Daikiti and Anbe remarry after 22 years. We’ll do what we feel we need to do. Chubee left without saying a word, and Haruko didn’t stay for the Umibiraki. Yui and Aki finish the show with an joyous victory lap. Everything is a beginning—what comes next is just the start for what comes next. Maybe I ought to be excited, too. (June 4, 2024)

2020年に「あまちゃん」を観た時、ただのん(当時本名で活躍していた)の代表作に興味を持っていました。「朝ドラ」ってことはちっとも知りませんでした。だから、当然なことに、私「あまちゃん」に惚れ込んできました。世界的な感染病に影響を受けた日常生活に比べれば、朝ドラなりの牧歌的な異世界に惚れました。この88作目の場合、海岸、田舎、海、雲丹、アイドル、女優、受け入れ性等がテーマとなりました。19歳であった私に好きな物千万なドラマでした。

だけどね、表面の下であるんでしょう、保守的な世界観。なんとかすれば、なんとか解決できる。アキちゃんの苦労、煩悶、寂寥、どうやって解決できるの?実は、ユイちゃんが指摘したアイドルのくだらなさは意中にとある行き止まりでしょう。アキちゃんと何度も相談しても、ユイちゃんの“心証”にアキちゃんの考え方が染めないようです。が!潮騒のメモリーズが復活しましたね。はて。なんででしょうかしら。

頑張りますからで済まないって言いたいのです。東北大地震によるダメージを受けた袖が浜、いや東日本を励む朝ドラなんでしたが、なんとかすればなんとかなるの考え方で朝ドラの典型的なヘロインとして、アキちゃんがただ進んで辿り道を開けましたのね。現実といえば、阻害があるはずですもの。アキちゃんには、正真正銘の「敵」がございませんでした。夏さん、春子さん、太巻きさん、鈴鹿ひろ美さんも、全員アキちゃんに憑かれて、アキちゃんの世界に傀儡の影響力を持っていました。完璧で牧歌的な別世界みたいに。

今でも「あまちゃん」が大好きですが、内面性に足りないヘロインのアキちゃんと内的価値観に矛盾する行為で生活を送っているユイちゃんは朝ドラのフォーマットでいつでも笑いかけるお婆ちゃんとお爺ちゃん達の異世界に翻弄されています。私はね、最近「虎の翼」を観ています。もっとリアルなドラマですが、その保守的な価値観が見られますよ。「法律は人を守る」と言い立てる虎ちゃんとどこが違いますか。ナイーブなだけではなく、世界に生きるのに耐えられないほどの世界観でしょう。矛盾しております! (2024年6月1日)

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2020/3/27
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