Maison Ikkoku: Long, Hot Summer
Episode 1: Picture Perfect

> indicates thoughts.
VO indicates voiceover.

(The camera pans across the outside of Maison Ikkoku. It's afternoon, 
and it's a beautiful summer day.)

VO Godai: It's been a week since school let out, and I've been bored out 
of my mind.

(Cut to the front porch. Kentaro is sitting on the steps, playing with a 
paddleball listlessly, while Soichiro just kind of snoozes.)

VO Godai: Mrs. Ichinose and Kyoko are going more often than usual to 
their tennis lessons, since Mitaka went onto a special "summer 

(Cut to Cha Cha Maru, where Akemi is actually waiting on customers for 
once. )

VO Godai: The Cha Cha Maru just got air-conditioning, so Akemi's working 
there overtime, which is probably just as well.

(Cut to a view of Door 4 from the upstairs hall.)

VO Godai: Yotsuya's off doing.. whatever it is he does.

(Finally, cut to Godai's room, camera viewing from ceiling. Godai is 
lying on his futon with his arms crossed under his head, staring at the 
roof. The books that are usually on his desk are absent, but the room is 
otherwise its usual cluttered self.)

Godai: I haven't heard from Kozue in a week and a half.. Hell, even 
Sakamoto's off visiting his family. Meanwhile, I'm jobless and barely 
solvent. (Godai sits up, camera switches to ground angle.) This sucks.

(We hear a knocking sound.)

Godai: Huh?

(The lobby. We have a view of the front door as we hear knocking again. 
Through the panel of the door, we see a silhouette, clearly that of the 
person knocking.)

Person: (calling out) Hello? Is anyone there?

Godai: (offstage) Hang on, I'm coming. (Godai walks on-camera.) (Opens 
door.) Hello?

(Standing in the door is a man, perhaps in his late 20s, carrying a 
briefcase and a duffel bag. He has black hair in a short ponytail, and 
sunglasses obscure his eyes. He is a bit shorter than Godai, and his 
face is about average. He is wearing a short-sleeved buttonfront shirt 
and tan slacks.)

Man: Hello. Are you the manager?

Godai: No, I'm just a tenant. Why?

Man: (Steps forward; the camera switches to a view from a few feet to 
the side of the door.) Ah. My name is Hiro Nigame. I'm here to see the 
manager about getting a room. (He holds out a card.)

Godai: (Takes the card.) Well, she should be back in about 15 minutes.

Nigame: All right. I'll just wait here. (He goes to the seat in the 
corner and sits down.)

Godai: Um.. right. (The camera pans to follow him as he heads to the 
stairs, and he walks up them and off camera.)

(Interior: Kyoko's room. She is sitting at her table, and the camera has 
a 3/4 front view of her, facing left.)

Kyoko: So you're a freelance photographer?

(The camera is now viewing the conversation between Kyoko and Nigame. 
They are sitting at adjoining sides of Kyoko's table; the camera is 
viewing from the opposite corner of the table. Kyoko is looking over 
some papers.)

Nigame: That's right, Miss Otonashi.

Kyoko: Well, freelance or not, you'll still have to get the rent in on 

Nigame: Understood, Miss Otonashi.

Kyoko: All right. You can take Room 2. I expect you'll be moving your 
things in right away?

Nigame: Actually, I was planning to buy furnishings around here. All I 
had with me are these, (hefts duffel and briefcase as he stands up) so 
I'll just drop these in the room as I head off.

(He heads out of the room. The view changes to the downstairs hallway. 
Hiro is leaving his room as Godai comes down the stairs.)

Nigame: Excuse me.. Godai, was it? Would you mind showing me around a 
bit? I'm new to the area, so..

Godai: Hmm.. sure, why not? (to self) It's not like I've got anything 
better to do..

(Outside. Nigame and Godai are walking down the street; we see them from 
a 3/4 overhead view.)

Nigame: So where's a good place to eat around here?

Godai: Well, there's Mama-san's, and Oodles O' Noodles..

Kozue's Voice: Hey!

(The view switches to a view from in front of Hiro and Godai. Kozue 
comes into view.)

Kozue: Hi, Yusaku! Who's your friend?

Godai: Ah.. This is Nigame-san. He just moved into Maison Ikkoku, and 
I'm showing him around.

Nigame: (bows) Pleased to meet you.

Kozue: (bows) I'm Kozue Nanao, (moving to take Godai's arm) Yusaku's 

Nigame: Hmm.. (He takes out a camera, steps back, and takes a picture of 
Godai and Kozue. The flash makes Godai and Kozue rub their eyes.) 

Godai: What was that about?

Nigame: I'm a photographer, remember? I like to have a picture of 
everyone I know.

Kozue: Neat! Can we have a copy?

Nigame: I don't see why not. I'll make an extra copy for each of you. 
(Puts away his camera) So, Godai-san, I believe we were discussing 
lunch.. Is there a good cafe around here?

Godai: Well, there's King Java down the street. They're okay.

Nigame: Sounds good to me!

(King Java. This is a diner/cafe with a large window, which the three 
sit near. Kozue sits next to Godai, quite close to him. Nigame sits 
across, in the middle. Kozue and Godai have gotten one large milkshake, 
which they share using two straws.)

Kozue: So what exactly do you do as a photographer, Nigame-san?

Nigame: Mostly I just travel around taking pictures. Every month I call 
the magazine executives and find out what they want for next month's 
issue. Then, if I have anything like that, I sell it to them; if not, I 
find some.

Godai: Sounds better than any job I've had. 

Nigame: It's not bad. Say, how long have you two been dating?

Kozue: About three years, now.

Nigame: (looking impressed) Steady for three years? That's a little 
unusual these days, isn't it?

Kozue: Maybe, but Yusaku is the only one for me! (smiling) Isn't that 
right, Yusaku?

Godai: (Looking nervous) Aheh.. Right! Sure! No other girls for me but 
Kozue! Right! Never!

(Godai leans down to take a sip of the shake, only to find that Kozue is 
doing the same. Before either can move, there is a *click* and a flash 
of light. Both jump, and rub their eyes. When they can see again, they 
glare at Nigame, who is sitting innocently.)

Nigame: Oh, don't mind me. (He looks at his watch.) Is it that time 
already? Please excuse me; I have some calls to make. (He pays and 
leaves hurriedly.)

Kozue: He seemed nice.. a little strange, maybe, but nice.

Godai: Well, compared to some of the other people I live with...

(The street. Nigame is talking at a public phone.)

Nigame: Hello, is this _Tokyo Modern_ magazine? Could I speak to Hikaru 
Daihito, please? Tell him it's Hiro Nigame... Daihito-san? So what's the 
word?.. Young love?..Yeah, (smiles) I have just the thing.

(Interior, Room 2. Nigame is sitting in his room; he has gotten some 
furnishings, though nothing elaborate. He is listening to voices outside 
his door.)

Ichinose's Voice: Hey, Kyoko! I hear Godai's taking his girlfriend out 
to the movies!

Kyoko's Voice: Words cannot describe the depths of the joy I feel for 

Ichinose's Voice: Thought you'd say something like that.

(Nigame opens the door. He sees Mrs. Ichinose outside, as Kyoko very 
calmly walks away. He steps out.)

Nigame: Excuse me, Mrs. Ichinose..

Ichinose: (turns towards him) Yeah? Hey, you're that new guy.. Noname, 
was it?

Nigame: Nigame, actually.. Hiro Nigame. I couldn't help overhearing you 
talking to the manager about Godai's date.. Why?

Ichinose: Because Godai'd never have the guts to talk to her if I 
didn't. Why do you ask?

Nigame: Oh, just.. curious.

(A movie theater. Kozue and Godai are in the third row. Kozue is leaning 
on Godai and looking very happy. Godai is wearing his usual expression 
of moral quandary, but seems to at least like the movie. Nigame steps 
into the theater from the back and sneaks up to the second row. There he 
skulks along until he is directly in front of the pair, although hidden 
by the seats. Kozue reaches for the popcorn in Godai's lap just as the 
movie approaches the climactic kiss. Nigame, sensing that the time is 
right, pops up and takes a flash photo, blinding the entire audience and 
getting out before anyone can clear their vision or identify him. As a 
result, all the popcorn intended for him by assorted movie patrons ends 
up hitting Godai.)

Kozue: What was that?

Godai: Probably just some prankster. (Looking up at the screen) Argh! We 
missed the ending!

(A kissaten in which Godai and Kozue are eating. Kozue is having ice 
cream, while Godai is just having some coffee.)

Kozue: Would you like some of my ice cream?

Godai: Umm..

Kozue: C'mon! I insist!

Godai: Okay.

(Godai reaches over with a spoon. There is a sudden flash of light. 
Godai jumps, and accidentally knocks over her ice cream.)

Godai: Oh!.. I'm sorry, let me help clean that up..

Kozue: No, no, it's okay. See! It all got on the table, and I was pretty 
much done anyway. I wonder what that flash was?

Godai: I have a suspicion..

(Outside Room 2. We hear the sounds of a typical MI "welcoming party" 
drifting from inside. Godai sneaks up to the door.)

Nigame's Voice: No, no! Don't open this door! That's my darkroom!

Yotsuya's Voice: And what might you need a dark room for, hmm?

Nigame's Voice: My photographs! I'm a photographer, remember?

(There is a brief pause.)

Yotsuya's Voice: So you sit in a dark room with your photographs? What, 
pray tell, are they photographs of?

Akemi's Voice: AIIEE! Pervert! Taking photographs of me to sit in your 
dark room with!

Nigame's Voice: No! No! It's not like that-aack!

Ichinose's Voice: Haw, haw, haw!

Godai: Guess it wasn't him after all. If they've been throwing him a 
party, they won't have let him out all night.>

(Godai walks away.)
(Interior, Room 2. Nigame is trapped by Mrs. Ichinose's grip on his leg, 
while Yotsuya stands by his darkroom door. Akemi is just laughing.)

Yotsuya: At long last, we shall see the objects of our curiousity: The 
contents of Nigame-san's dark room!

Nigame: No! The photos haven't developed yet. I'll show you when they're 

Everyone Else: Hmm..

Nigame: (desperately) I'll buy you each a bottle of sake!

Everyone Else: Deal!

(Interior, Room 5. Godai is lying on his futon, with his arms crossed 
behind his head, and his right leg is crossed over the knee of his 

Godai: Geez.. What a disaster. If it wasn't Nigame, who was it?>

(The door flies open. Yotsuya is standing in the door, flanked by Akemi 
and Mrs. Ichinose. Each is holding a large bottle of sake.)

Yotsuya: And so, with supplies refreshed, the festivities continue!

Godai: Hang on a sec! I thought you were throwing a party for that 
Nigame guy!

Yotsuya: Indeed we were. However, we have collected our tribute and 
moved along.

Ichinose: We thought "Heck, if we could move the party once, we can move 
it again!"

Godai: If you thought at all, it's a change. (Something seems to occur 
to him.) Waitasec.. You moved your party before?

Akemi: Yah. We figured Nigame-san would want in on the fun.

Godai: So where were you before?

Yotsuya: Where else but here, our festival ground of so many happy 

Godai: WHAT?

Yotsuya: (appears to remember something) Oh, and you may want to stay 
off the futon. There was an unfortunate sake spill; it is fortunate that 
your bedding is so absorbant, or the tatami might have been ruined.

Godai: (jumping to his feet) What? (sniffs) Oh, great. The smell will 
never come out of my futon now!

Ichinose: Ahh, it's not so bad for your futon to smell like sake!

Godai: (aside) You _would_ know.

Yotsuya: Ichinose is indeed correct. It is far easier to clean a futon 
of alcohol than a tatami.

Godai: Anyhow, I don't want a party in my room!

Yotsuya: (gesturing to the door) You are free to leave anytime you like.

(Godai growls, but something appears to occur to him. He heads out 
without saying anything, and slams the door behind him. The partying 
stops for a moment.)

Yotsuya: What an odd young man.

(Everyone laughs, and the drinking continues.)
(Interior, Room 2. We can see both the door to the hall and the door 
leading to the darkroom. There is a loud knock.)

Nigame's Voice: One moment!

(The darkroom door opens, and Nigame comes out, closing the door behind 
him. He walks over to the hall door, and the camera moves to view from 
behind him at about 45ยก. He opens the door. Standing in it is Godai.)

Nigame: Can I help you, Godai-san?

Godai: What were you doing before _they_ came down here?

Nigame: What? Oh.. I was just out looking for pictures for my latest 

Godai: Pictures of _what_?

Nigame: Oh, well- (sniffs) Godai, are you drunk? You smell like sake.

Godai: No, I am NOT drunk! What were they pictures of?

Nigame: Are you sure? What've you had to drink?

Godai: Stop dodging! What were you taking pictures of?

Kyoko's Voice: Yusaku, what are you doing? It's nearly eleven! Why are 
you shouting at Nigame-san at this hour?

(Godai turns. Kyoko is standing in the hall next to him.)

Godai: (flustered) I- that is- I-

Kyoko: (turns to Nigame) Do you have any idea?

Nigame: None. I was working in my darkroom when he started banging on my 
door and asking what I'd been taking pictures of.

Kyoko: (sniffs) Godai, you stink of sake! I wouldn't be surprised at 
this from any of the others, but I thought you were above this. (turns 
and walks off)

Godai: Kyoko.. Wait.. It's not like-

Nigame: If you're really curious about the pictures, they'll be in 
_Tokyo Modern_ next week. (closes the door)

Godai: Wait.. but.. (gives up) aw, jeez. 

(He walks back up to his room, where the boozing is still in full swing. 
Going in, he grabs his futon, gets into the closet, and goes to sleep.)

VO Godai: Not much happened over the next week. Kyoko didn't speak to me 
for a day or two, and Kozue didn't seem too happy after the botched 
date. What's more, my futon still smelled like Mrs. Ichinose's cheap 

(Interior, Room 5. Godai is getting up. He awakens, stretches, and 
stares at the ceiling for a few moments. Yotsuya sticks his head in.)

Yotsuya: I say, Godai-kun. Have you seen the latest issue of _Tokyo 

Godai: Huh?

Yotsuya: Behold!

(Yotsuya holds up a magazine. The cover reads:

 Tokyo Modern
 The magazine of today's Japan
 Young Love in Modern Tokyo!
 (A case study)

The cover photo is of Godai, with Kozue on his arm. They look like 
blissful young lovers. Yotsuya opens the magazine and begins to read.)

Yotsuya: Ahem. "Young Love. Article and pictures by Hiro Nigame.
 Many older people say that real love is dead among young people 
 today; that increasing Westernization and scholastic pressure has 
 caused a push among young couples towards brief, physical 
 relationships. However that may be, at least a few couples still 
 form strong, lasting romances. Case in point: Yusaku Godai and Kozue 
 Nanao, two college students who have found love. Yusaku and Kozue 
 have been dating steadily for the past three years. They frequently 
 go to movies and meals together. "There's no other man for me 
 besides Yusaku," said Miss Nanao, giggling and taking hold of his 
 arm. "Yes. Kozue is the right woman for me," said Godai confidently, 
 when asked. "I would never date anyone else now." Friends of the 
 couple agreed that the relationship looked like it would last. At 
 least one said that she thought Godai would "probably never even 
 think about asking" anyone else for a date. Another friend, who 
 asked to remain nameless, said that he believed that their intention 
 was to get married when both graduated."
It goes on like that. What an.. interesting article! (smiles) What do 
you suppose the manager would think?

Godai: You wouldn't.

Yotsuya: What's that? Alas, my stomach rumbles too loudly for me to hear 
your protests.

Godai: Right. I'll buy you dinner tonight.

Yotsuya: Why, how generous! Unfortunately, I shall have to eat for the 
rest of the week. Perhaps I could trade my magazine to Otonashi-san for 
a meal..

Godai: Extortionist! I'll buy you lunch _and_ dinner tonight and 
tomorrow. You know I can't afford more than that.

Yotsuya: It shall have to suffice. (He tosses the magazine to Godai.) I 
really don't know what I'd do without your kindness. Ta ta.

(Godai glances at the article. It is as Yotsuya read it, with pictures 
of Godai and Kozue eating ice cream, watching a movie, drinking a 
milkshake, etc. The story's main picture is the cover photo, of Kozue 
hanging off of Godai.)

(Interior, Room 2. Nigame is sitting against the wall and reading a 
book. There is a pounding on his door.)

Nigame: It's not locked.

(Godai opens the door. He marches in, right up to Nigame.)

Godai: (Holding up _Tokyo Modern_) _What_ is _this_ about?

Nigame: (blinks) Young love, to judge by the cover. Why?

Godai: (opening up the book and pointing at the article) When did I say 

Nigame: (reading) Oh. Well, I wasn't taking notes, so I had to 
reconstruct as best I could.

(Image of Godai talking, but all we can make out is "Kozue.. right 
woman.. other women.. never..")

Nigame: Sorry, but it was the best I could do.

Godai: (obviously unconvinced) Riight. So (pointing to the pictures of 
him and Kozue at the theater and the kissaten) what about these 

Nigame: Nice, aren't they? I think they came out exceptionally well, 
given the conditions I took them under. It isn't easy to take good 
pictures in a dark theater. I think it was the new filter I used. See, 
first I..

Godai: He's.. he's all but admitting that he wrecked my date!>

Nigame: ..really, I can't see what you're so worked up about. Nanao-san 
will probably be tickled pink when she sees this!

Godai: (mouth hanging open) That's right.. he doesn't know about me and 

Nigame: (seeing Godai's expression) C'mon, it's not that bad. Really, I 
think she'll like it!

Godai: Ah.. right. I gotta go.

Nigame: See ya.

(Godai rushes out the door, closing it behind him. He stares at the 
cover of the magazine for a second. Frustrated, he tears it off and 
stuffs it in his pocket.)

Godai: I can't let Kyoko see this.. she'd never talk to me again!>

(He checks his wallet.)

Godai: Geez.. How'm I gonna buy off the rest with _this_?>

Kyoko: Yusaku?

Godai: (jumps) GYAHH!

Kyoko: A package arrived from your parents. I left it outside your door.

Godai: Ah.. thanks. Saved!> (He rushes up to his room.)

Kyoko: You're welcome! (notices something he dropped) Oh.. what's this? 
(She bends down and picks it up.)

(Outside Room 5. A package is on the floor, and Akemi and Yotsuya are 
looking at it inquisitively when Godai runs up.)

Godai: (making "shoo"ing motions) Move on, you vultures!

Yotsuya: Why, I almost think we might be unwelcome here.

Akemi: And after he offered to buy us dinner, too. Shame, shame, shame..

Godai: Waitasec! When did I offer to buy YOU dinner?

Akemi: Oh, so you want me to talk to Kyoko about a certain magazine?

Godai: Blackmailer.

Akemi: Yup. So how 'bout it?

Godai: *grumble grumble* fine.

Akemi: Good boy. (Turns to leave.) Oh, by the way..

Godai: What?

Akemi: Kyoko usually buys the news at the Clock Hill News Stand anyway.. 
Y'know, the one with the big magazine display?

(Godai pales.)

Akemi: See ya!

(Godai stands for a moment.)

Yotsuya: About that package..

Godai: I already bought _you_ off! You're not getting any!

Yotsuya: Alas.

(Godai carries the package into his room. He takes the money and hides 
the rest in his closet. He then heads out.)

(The Clock Hill News Stand. Godai is talking to the proprietor.)

Godai: if you could not put _Tokyo Modern_ on the display, I'd 
appreciate it.

Proprietor: For 7000 yen, it's a deal.

Godai: Done! (He hands over the money.)

(The porch of Maison Ikokku. Kyoko is reading _Tokyo Modern_, although 
she isn't very far into it. Nigame comes out.)

Nigame: Ah.. excuse me..

Kyoko: Yes?

Nigame: That magazine has some pictures of mine in it, and, um.. I like 
to have a copy of everything containing my work, and the local news 
stand seems to be sold out, and I'm going to be leaving Tokyo at the end 
of the summer, so..

(Godai shows up at the end of the walk.)

Kyoko: So you want this? No problem. I just found it lying around, 

Nigame: Thanks.

Kyoko: What pictures of yours are in it?

Nigame: Well, one's on the next page..


(Kyoko and Nigame look up to see Godai running at them in a panic. They 
dive out of the way, and the magazine lands open.)

Kyoko: (looks at Godai) What was that about?

Godai: Don't look!

Kyoko: Why? (She looks down at the fallen magazine.) It's just a picture 
of Maison Ikokku. And a nice one, at that.

Godai: Huh?

Nigame: Thanks! When they told me one of their backup articles was on 
boarding houses, I knew which picture to send them right away! I'll give 
you a copy, if you want.

Kyoko: That would be nice. Thank you. (Looks at Godai, who has passed 
out from relief.) Yusaku? Are you all right?

VO Godai: And so, for once, I got out of a potential disaster relatively 
scot-free. Kozue was really happy when she saw the article, and so far 
as I know, Kyoko never saw it at all. Maybe this summer wouldn't be that 
bad after all..

Fin episode 1