On May 2, the second episode of “M Ai Subeki Hito ga Ite”, the drama based on the rise to fame of Ayumi Hamasaki, starring Kalen Anzai as Ayu, aired.
After winning the marathon in episode 2, it was certain that Ayu would be making her debut. However, President Ohama never guaranteed it would be as a soloist. Instead, he says that she will be debuting in Sho’s girl group. This infuriates Masa, leading him to re-enact the Arthur meme.
Something that President Ohama said in the beginning of the episode may explain why we have so few female soloists now, but so many female groups: most people fail, so it’s easier to debut a group due to there being less risk. Think of all the effort that has to be put into five different soloists, compared to the amount that has to be put into one group of five.
We are then flashed back to 1985, where Ayu asks her grandmother why her father has abandoned her. In this flashback, there is a flashback to Ayu’s father letting go of her hand to basically let her drown. Whether this is literal or metaphorical, I can’t be sure.
Ayu and Masa later meet at Velfine, where he tells her she’ll debut in a group, leading her to re-enact the Arthur meme as well. Even though she doesn’t want to be in a group, she acts pleased and then leaves to go him.
While leaving Velfine, she admits that she doesn’t want to debut in a group. She turns around and Masa is there. She gives him an ultimatum: let her debut solo or she’ll quit. He calls her stupid and then says he won’t let her quit. He then picks her up and spins around with her. At this point, the background music switches from REVIVE ‘EM ALL 2020’s “CAN’T STOP THIS!!” to the real Ayu’s “You.” The fake Ayu and Masa are all smiles at this point.
Masa then has Ayu come to the A Victory building, with Reika being sent off to fetch her as she arrives. Reika trips and falls, which looks like a set up that allows her to tell Ayu that Masa likes to take off her eye patch and kiss what’s underneath.
Ayu then attends an A Victory executive meeting, where its debated whether she’ll debut solo or in a group. During this meeting, the company’s board drags her, calling her pale, poor, uncharismatic, and a future flop. She smiles through it all, but it makes Masa re-enact the Arthur meme again. President Ohama suggests that Ayu is dumb for smiling while being insulted. Masa turns to look at Ayu, and she too is re-enacting the Arthur meme.
Masa then says that Ayu will make her solo debut regardless of what everyone else says, because she is the future. He says that if she doesn’t sell a million copies in her first year, he’ll quit the music industry and pay back all the money used to create her.
While escorting Ayu out of the A Victory building, Reika asks Ayu if she’s romatically interested in Masa. She also reveals what’s under her eye patch to Ayu, shocking her. She then accuses Masa of stealing her missing eye. She then accuses Ayu of having a hand that steals, and begs her not to steal Masa from her. If she does, Reika won’t forgive her (this scene has basically become a meme).
Sho and his girl group then meet up. They are mad that Ayu gets to have her way and debut solo. They said this is only possible because Ayu and Masa are having sex with each other.
Sho mentions this Masa, and he confesses that he is in love with Ayu. He says that he has to be in love with her to produce her.
Masa and Ayu later go to the sea. He asks her why she kept smiling even though the executives tore her apart at A Victory. She said that even though it’s easy to cry, she want to keep laughing. Masa then has a flashback of his time with Ayu, and says that she’s not an idol, or a singer, but an artist.
Later in his office, Masa instructs Ayu to write lyrics to a demo he found. He says that she has a way with words when she speaks (this is why he decided to debut her as an artist).
After leaving Ayu leaves, Reika asks Masa if he’s in love with Ayu. He denies it. She then asks him if he will be with her now that he’s divorcing his wife. Reika then pulls out a photo album she made dedicated to Masa, which includes their wedding date. She also shows him their marriage registration form.
Later in a cafe, Ayu is confronted by her two bullies from the last episode. They criticize her lyrics, accuse her of sleeping with Masa, rip her lyric notebook, and pour orange juice on her. One of them then takes the wet lyric page and balls up it. Ayu then runs home (this scene has basically become a meme too).
Masa calls Ayu, and she confesses that she can’t write lyrics. He then tells her to take what she’s currently feeling and put it into the lyrics, to show her true self.
Ayu arrives home, to find her grandmother passed out. At the hospital, it is announced that Ayu’s grandmother will be treated at a hospital in their hometown, Fukuoka. Ayu thinks of going with her, but her aunt says she has commitments. Ayu then returns home to work on lyrics. This song ends up being “A song for xx.”
Ayu turns in the “A song for xx” lyrics, which he loves. He then gives her another demo, her debut song. He also says the lyrics are due the next day.
Next, we are shown Sho and one of the bullies in bed, after having sex. He says that he wants to forget that this happened, but she has take photos of them together in bed, a probable blackmail effort.
Ayu then visits Masa’s office to tell him that her grandmother has become more in ill in Fukuoka. He tells her to go see her. Ayu then changes her mind and decides to finish the new song lyrics first, even though Masa says she may not make it to see her grandmother if she does so. Ayu says his own words back to him, that she has to put what she’s currently feeling into her lyrics.
Ayu starts on the lyrics for what will become “Poker face.” Scenes of Ayu writing are cut with scenes of her grandmother on her death bed. Upon finishing the lyrics, Masa praises them. He then tells Ayu to go see her grandmother.
When Ayu arrives at the hospital in Fukuoka, her grandmother is dead. Ayu thanks her grandmother, and says she’s the inspiration for her lyrics.
After her grandmother’s funeral, Ayu goes to the sea where they spent time together. Masa appears, and tells Ayu that he lit incense for her grandmother and promised her that he will make Ayu a star. He hugs him, and he hugs her back. She then reveals to herself that the last line of “Poker face” (“I want your love”) wasn’t about her grandmother, but Masa.
For those of you that want to watch it as well, the subbed verison is available here. Again, special thanks to Blitz Fansub for subbing the drama! Also, due to COVID-19, production on the drama has come to a halt.