Sanctuary – J-drama Episode 2 Recap & Review

Episode 2

Episode 2 of Sanctuary opens with a young boy, Shizuuchi, looking at the dead bodies of a woman and a child. The boy has a scar on his face and a knife in his hand. We then jump to the present, where a sumo wrestler named Ryuki is being promoted to the position of Ozeki.

The press interviews Ryuki as he was the son of a renowned sumo wrestler, Ryubu, who was in the position of Yokuzuna. Ryuki claims that he wants to surpass his father’s legacy. Kunishima and her boss are at the interview as well, but Ryuki is only pretending to be confident because once the interview is over, he finds himself throwing up in his vanity van.

During his interview, Ryuki claims that his competition is Shizuuchi, which pushes Kunishima to ask Ryuki some grilling questions. She asks him if he was aware of the violent hazing that’s been going on in many stables, as well as the status of women when it comes to sumo wrestling. Ryuki avoids answering the question and leaves the interview in confidence.

On their way back, her boss asks Kunishima to respect the boundaries and forces her to apologise to Enga for entering the wrestling ring. Kunishima unwillingly does so and sits in her spot observing the sumo wrestlers at the Ensho Stable performing the shiko exercise. Oze refuses to do the exercise and Ensho forces him to fight Enya to teach him a lesson.

Enya ends up defeating Oze pretty easily which leaves Oze on the ground crying. Ensho mocks Oze for being a blabbermouth while Kunishima stares angrily as Enga stuffs a ball of mud down Oze’s mouth, hazing him. Oze swallows the mud shocking Enga and Kunishima while the other wrestlers continue to practice.

At his stable, Ryuki’s father slaps him for responding to Kunishima when he said that the sumo world needed to change. The other wrestlers are shocked to see Ryubu beat his own son and Ryuki apologises for his behaviour. Kunishima wonders why doing the shiko is so important in comparison to actual wrestling for sumo wrestlers. Her boss tells Kunishima that these rules have been the same for years on end and that they will not change so easily.

That afternoon, Oze finds Shizuuchi, who is now grown up to be one of the most deadly sumo wrestlers, in the park looking at a cherry blossom tree. Oze jokes about Shizuuchi’s scar but Shizuuchi doesn’t respond.

Back at the stable, Oze finds a box of food items from his father. The old man had shared a few photos of himself and a handwritten letter to his son. Oze leaves the box unattended and goes out to call his dad. Oze’s father takes some time walking from his garden to the living room and misses the phone call.

At the sumo wrestlers association, Ensho runs into Inushima, the man who was against Oze. Ensho mocks Inushima which further infuriates him. Enga tells Oze that Mr Ogawa, their manager from Ensho Stable, had invited the two wrestlers to a hostess bar in order to force them into getting along with each other.

At the bar, a hostess with big breasts named Nanumi catches Oze’s eye. He ends up singing a song in order to win her over and gains a lot of praise for his singing and dancing skills. Enga, on the other hand, ends up embarrassing himself in his attempt to try and beat Oze.

Nanumi and Oze are getting along quite well and they exchange socials. Enja beats Oze with his microphone, annoyed by the fact that no one is interested in his performance. The two sumo wrestlers break out in a fight at the hostess bar and all the way back to the stable. Once there, Oze is shocked to see that the wrestlers have thrown away his father’s gift in the trash.

Oze rushes outside to salvage it but finds them trashed badly. The next morning, Oze is in a pissy mood. He is observing the wrestlers in order to perfect his moves. He instigates Enga into picking him for the fight. In the ring, Oze uses different methods to defeat Enga and almost manages to push him out of the ring but Enga manages to defeat him in the final second.

Kunishima, who had been rooting for Oze originally, is also displeased by Enga’s win. Oze is upset about losing but Kunishima chats with trying to cheer him up. Oze ends up arguing with Kunishima calling her a moron which infuriates her. Oze laughs at Kunishima calling her funny. Just then, Nanami texts Oze asking him to hang out.

The two spend the rest of the evening hanging out and Oze ends up staring at Nanumi’s breasts all evening. The two play at a park and end up eating at a cafe. Oze seems to be infatuated by Nanumi who is actively flirting with him. She drops him off at the stable and Oze is well pleased with himself. That night, Oze gets a call from the hospital stating that his father had been in a traffic accident.

Oze’s mother is left looking after his father. She states that it would be better off if the old man had died instead of being on life support for an expensive treatment. Oze’s mother believes that he would need to continue his job as a sumo wrestler which would be their only way to afford the treatment. Oze goes back home and looks at a family photo from when he was younger.

He notices the plants that his father loved and leaves one of the potted plants outside his hospital room. That night, Oze sits in the park looking at the video footage of how Enga defeated him earlier that day. He realises that it was performing the shiko regularly that gave Enga the momentum to push Oze down.

Oze starts practising the shiko then and there until he is tired and cannot stand up any longer. He recalls seeing his father in the hospital bed and pushing himself to practice some more. Shizuuchi sees him in the park and offers Oze a canned drink, repaying the drink Oze had offered him earlier that day. Oze takes the drink and leaves to go back to his stable.

Shizuuchi waits behind looking at the cherry blossom tree again as he recalls his younger self watching a woman and a little girl bleed to death as the episode comes to an end.

The Episode Review

I really hate Enga’s character because he is just plain mean and there is no redemption for him. Oze’s fixation on big breasts will definitely lead to his doom because it seems like Nanumi is not actually attracted to him but is trying to entice him for her personal benefit.

There is something about Shizuuchi that makes me think that he was not the person that murdered the woman and the little girl under the cherry blossom tree.

It is possible that the two were Shizuuchi’s mother and little sister and that he discovered their dead bodies under the tree. This would be the reason why he visits the cherry blossom tree so often and why he refuses to speak to anyone. We will only see it in the episodes to come!

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Expect a full-season review for Sanctuary later this week!


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