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Sazae-san
Sazae-san in Japan's Postwar
Date:15, May, 2020
Investigated and Written by Misaka Youhei
About our introductory articles


Hello. How are you today? I'm talking about Sazae-san now. It is a Japanese live-action film released in 1956 December. Sazae-san is well-known in Japan, but I don't know how popular Sazae-san is all over the world. Maybe you have never heard it. So first I would explain about Sazae-san.

Hasegawa Machiko (1920-1992) was a Japanese female manga artist. World War 2 finished in 1945 as you know, and next year 1946 she began to illustrate Sazae-san serialized in a local newspaper. It became so popular that it had been serialized intermittently until 1974. They put it into animation in 1969. And the animation is still on-air every Sunday evening. Today the anime looks more popular among Japanese people than original manga, I suppose.

What is the difference between the original manga and the animated? I guess each stage is different. The original often shows how it was just after the war finished. In 1940's, rationed were most daily necessities like sake and food. And we can find Sazae-san watch over the things at the corner in the manga. On the other hand, we can't in the animated Sazae-san. In the animated world, Sazae-san goes shopping to a supermarket, uses a gas stove for cooking like we do today. They never had such things just after the war finished.

1956 Economic White Paper said "postwar" was no more in Japan. According to the announcement, postwar finished in 1956. It means Japan's Postwar is 1945 to 1956. And Sazae-san began during the 11 years as mentioned above. So Hasegawa Machiko described how it was just after the war finished. On the other hand, the animated started in 1969 when Japanese Postwar had already fell into oblivion. Then, we can find the difference between the two.

The film was released in 1956. It means we can watch them play in Japanese postwar. In other words, it is supposed the movie is closer to the original than the animated. What is the story? Miss Sazae is a single woman. She meets an unmarried man Fuguta Masuo by a strange coincidence, falls in love with him. What does she do? What does he do to her? An ordinary love story in postwar times.

The film got so popular that it was serialized until 1961. Totally made were the 10 films. Sadly, any have not been released on home video like DVD and VHS. It means you are not easy to watch it actually. Don't miss it if it's broadcasted at your neighbor theaters (or stations).

about Sazae-san

・Directed by Aoyagi Nobuo
・Written by Kasahara Ryozo
・Originally Written by Hasegawa Machiko
・Produced by Sugihara Sadao
・Distributed by Toho
・Released on December 12, 1956
・Running Time: 86 minutes





 

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