Karei-naru Ichizoku

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Karei-naru Ichizoku
華麗なる一族
Format Drama
Starring Takuya Kimura
Country of origin Japan
No. of episodes 11
Production
Running time approx. 0:46
Broadcast
Original channel TBS
Original run 14 January 2007 – 18 March 2007

Karei-naru Ichizoku (華麗なる一族) is a Japanese drama aired on Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS) for its 55th anniversary. It is a remake of a 1970s novel of the same name by Toyoko Yamasaki. Takuya Kimura received widespread acclaim for his work in the series.

Plot[edit]

Set in the post-World War II climate of the 1960s in Kobe, the show explores the struggle for power within the powerful Manpyo family. The cornerstone of their empire is the Hanshin Bank (阪神銀行?, a fictional version of the former Kobe Bank (now Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation)), controlled by the father of the clan, Daisuke Manpyo (万俵 大介?). Eldest son Teppei (万俵 鉄平?, played by Takuya Kimura) is the managing director of Hanshin Steelworks (阪神特殊製鋼?, fictional version of Sanyo Special Steel Co., Ltd.). The ambitious Teppei seeks to expand operations of his company, and goes to his father to see if he can secure a loan. But the Minister of Finance seeks the merger of smaller Japanese banks to fend off foreign competition. Daisuke must decide whether to protect his son's interest in manufacturing or to ensure the survival of the bank that he controls.

The series mostly revolves on the hidden secrets within the Manpyo family. A running theme throughout the show is Teppei's constant hunger for his father's approval. However, instead of being seen as a son, he is often seen as a threat by his own father. Throughout most of the series, they are competing as Daisuke refuses to help in Teppei's struggles.

At the end, we are shown why the characters act as they did. Teppei's mother was supposedly raped by his grandfather, therefore, making Daisuke unsure if Teppei was actually his, or Keisuke's (his father). Teppei's uncanny resemblance to Keisuke, and his blood type proves to Daisuke that he was, indeed, his half-brother. This causes the heartache that surrounds the Manpyo family.

Teppei's company is not saved. As he finds out that he was not actually who he thought he was, he goes to the mountains where his family hunts. He makes a final call to his wife. The next morning, Teppei leaves a suicide note and shoots himself.

When the Manpyo family learns about Teppei's death, his mother is distraught. His father however, seems placid and cold. A man then comes in and asks the parents to sign Teppei's death certificate. Daisuke notices that they had made a mistake in the certificate, he states that they had Teppei's blood type wrong. The man informs them that the blood test was wrong. This revelation drives Teppei's mother into a fit. Daisuke is weakened. The man he thought to be a product of his father's horrible actions, was in fact, his own son. He is even more remorseful when he reads Teppei's suicide letter. Finally, Teppei is given the acceptance that he so long craved for.

Ratings[edit]

The series attracted good ratings. Over the course of its run, the series averaged 23.9% in the Kanto region (TBS) and 30.4% in the Kansai region (MBS).

Hawaii broadcast[edit]

Karei-naru Ichizoku aired on KIKU-TV in Hawaii on September 23, 2007 to November 25, 2007 under the name The Grand Family. The broadcast included complete English subtitles.[1]

References[edit]