I’m not a parent, so there are things about them I can’t comprehend. There are exceptions, but parents in general love their children to a degree that seems irrational to me. Perhaps the child grows up to be a violent criminal. Perhaps he even abuses his parents. But somehow, they still love him. They would still cry for him if he disappeared. This, to me, is a profound mystery.
In My Home Hero episode 5, Tetsuo happens to encounter the father of Nobuto, the young man he killed. This was the most interesting part of the next three episodes, at least to me. Nobuto’s dad is falling apart at the seams because his beloved son is missing. Tetsuo must face the uncomfortable feeling that, in protecting his own child, he took the life of another man’s child. Although My Home Hero tends to be thematically weak, this is an example of a deeper theme found within.
Episode 4: The World of Violence
Testsuo begins the anxious task of pretending to work with Kyoichi to prove his innocence and avoid being killed off. The two men go to a hostess night-club where they meet Hibiki, one of Nobuto’s several girlfriends. Hibiki isn’t able to offer much useful information until Kyoichi leaves the table and Tetsuo uses his social skills to talk to her alone. At that point, the hostess whispered a secret to Testuo: that Nobuto once betrayed the organization he worked for, attacking one of their armored cars and stealing the large amount of money it contained. With this new information in his head, Tetsuo considers his next move.
The next part of the episode doesn’t make much sense to me, but the hostess club owners accuse Kyoichi and Tetsuo of making them lose ten million yen. I’m not sure if this is pure extortion, or if there was some other explanation I didn’t get. The club owners are in league with the yakuza, too. They demand the ten million from Kyoichi and Tetsuo. When they cannot pay it, the yakuza gives them one last chance: if they take a dangerous job tonight and survive, their debt will be erased. With no real choice in the matter, Kyoichi and Tetsuo take the job.
The job involves ruining a transaction between two mafia factions that oppose the main organization. It’s practically suicide for two normal men without guns to do this. Kyoichi asks Tetsuo if he killed Nobuto, but there’s not even time to think of a good answer before Kyoichi rapidly accelerates. He’s charging in with the car to ruin the mafia transaction. If they survive, they’ll discuss Nobuto after the job is done.
It doesn’t go well, though. Kyoichi gets shot in the side and the shoulder, and Tetsuo is barely able to drag him out of the burning car before it explodes. The two men try to escape into the woods during the chaos that followed. However, Kyoichi is starting to lose consciousness and get delirious. A mafia member finds the two runaways and points his gun at Tetsuo. The episode ends on that cliffhanger.
The relatively large amount of action kept my attention easily; nevertheless, this episode was only average in its writing, execution, and overall quality. Something was missing that would have made it much more exciting, but I can’t put my finger on the exact issue. (More suspenseful music at key moments might have helped.) At the end of the day, I consider this anime a drama more than an action show or a thriller. so, it’s not a deal-breaker if the action scenes aren’t great. But there were other issues, too. The narrative was really unclear about why Kyoichi and Tetsuo suddenly have to pay off ten million yen. To sum it up, this episode was rather mediocre.
Episode 5: Are You Happy?
Kubo from the main organization shoots the enemy mafia member, thus saving Tetsuo and Kyoichi. He also removes the bullets from Kyoichi and staples the wounds. When Tetsuo finally returns home, Kasen asks him what happened. She demands to know what she can do to help him. In response, Tetsuo asks her to contact their old friend Tabata, who is a small-time professional video producer. The plan is to make a video that suggests Nobuto is alive. Tetsuo will then upload the video to Nobuto’s social media account, which Hibiki the hostess gave to him.
Although it takes some negotiating, Kasen succeeds in making the video with Tabata. But things aren’t going so well on Tetsuo’s end. He can’t get into Nobuto’s account because he can’t answer the security question for password reset. The question is about Nobuto’s childhood pet. Running out of ideas, Tetsuo visits a quiet bar where Nobuto supposedly used to frequent. There, he has an intense conversation with Nobuto’s father, Matori, without knowing the man’s identity.
Matori asks for Tetsuo’s name, but acting on instinct, he gives a fake name (Tetsuji Tabata). Then Matori leaves the bar. Only then does Tetsuo ask the bartender about Nobuto. The knowledgeable bartender says that Matori is Nobuto’s father. Realizing he just missed a huge opportunity, Tetsuo takes to the streets, looking for any sign of Matori. To be continued.
Once again, although the events of this episode were good in theory, they were not executed in a way that made them interesting. I’m not sure what this anime is missing or why it doesn’t quite get what it’s going for. Part of the issue might be that the main character isn’t very appealing. I kept hoping he would become more interesting with time, but we’re already nearly halfway through the season, and there have been no interesting developments. Tetsuo’s psychology is incredibly simple and doesn’t seem to change much. In addition, his timidity and self-deprecation can be off-putting.
Despite the issues, I’ll probably see this series through to the end, since I’ve already come this far. At the very least, I’ll sit through episode six.
Episode 6: Entertaining The Guest, Kasen Style
Thanks to an offhand remark from Matori at the bar, Tetsuo and Kasen correctly guess the answer to the security question on Nobuto’s account. The name of the childhood pet was “Captain.” Tetsuo uploads the video and goes to work as usual the next day. Kyoichi finds him and once again accuses him of killing Nobuto. However, at that moment, the organization discovered the video. They immediately begin analyzing it to see if it’s legitimate. Kyoichi drags Tetsuo along with him to stay with the analytical team.
It doesn’t take long for the capable organization to recognize that the video is a fake. This further convinces Kyoichi that Tetsuo is suspicious, so he demands to be taken to the Tosu home to look around. At the house, Kyoichi quickly finds the large planter and orders Tetsuo to overturn it. He does so, but there is no flesh inside anymore. It all decomposed to dirt. There is only one clue left in the dirt: a few pieces of Nobuto’s hair that didn’t dissolve. Tetsuo considers killing Kyoichi to prevent him from finding the clue. However, at that moment, Kasen returns home.
Kasen makes coffee mixed with a laxative, apparently just as a gut-punch to Kyoichi. He is quickly incapacitated. While Kyoichi is in the bathroom, Kasen and Tetsuo install a keystroke tracker program onto Kyoichi’s laptop. Now, they can monitor him. Things seem to be going well for Kasen and Tetsuo, until their daughter Reika shows up. Kyoichi approaches her and begins to talk to her about Nobuto. That’s where the episode ends.
It was nice to see Kasen get a tiny bit of revenge against Kyoichi. I’m really surprised by how direct and brave she was in this episode. It’s always refreshing when there’s a housewife with such a bold attitude. Kyoichi is getting more desperate and angry by the day, so I’m hoping his emotionality will make him screw up somehow or show a weakness that Tetsuo can use. I’m sure Tetsuo is also getting desperate. The one-week deadline has arrived, and Nobuto has not been found. Tetsuo is in imminent danger of being killed.
In terms of episode quality, the issues I pointed out in previous episodes still apply. My Home Hero is good enough to keep me entertained, but just barely. It’s lacking in many areas, including character development and themes. I’ve pretty much stopped hoping that it’s going to get significantly better. I don’t recommend this anime unless you just have copious amounts of free time on your hands. Also, you might appreciate the show if you like the Japanese seiyuus Junichi Suwabe and Sayaka Ohara. That concludes my thoughts for today.
Thank you for reading~