“Anything is the same as long as you can fit it in your stomach…”
Following “potato salad” and “fried chicken,” a man who was interviewed on the street in “Monday to Night Fukashi” (Nippon Television Network Corporation, October 4, 2011) talked about his divorce because he was served only yakisoba for dinner, which caused a firestorm on the Internet.
The theme of cooking and household chores can easily become a topic of discussion. In such a situation, the manga “My Wife’s Food is Bad and I Want a Divorce” in “Momsta Select” was trending many times on SNS the other day, causing controversy on both sides.
The main character is a housewife who has three children and is working part-time to save money for their education. However, her husband has been sneaking out to eat at fancy restaurants with his own pocket money, and has even considered divorcing her because her cooking is so bad.
At first, I thought it was a story about a morally harassed husband who does not do his own housework and only complains. However, while there was criticism of husbands, there was also a lot of criticism of wives who were aware that they were not good cooks but did not make any effort. The clash of opinions between the two sides resulted in a great deal of excitement, but I think that was exactly what they were aiming for. When I asked Mamasuta Select, I received the following response.
“We didn’t expect to receive so many responses on SNS and from readers. I didn’t expect such a large number of responses on social media and from readers. Some said, “If you’re not good at cooking, why don’t you let someone who is do it?
The stories are all true stories… and they go into the home environment in which each person grew up.
The theme of “Mesima-zu” was originally inspired by the voices of our readers, and many of them shared their experiences of their own parents’ Mesima-zu, lunchboxes from their school days, and unique original recipes. The excitement led to the idea of starting a series of articles.
Incidentally, Mamasuta Select’s media policy is that “all stories must be true stories. On top of that, they introduce readers’ stories, as well as the stories of the writers and illustrators themselves. In other words, the flow of this work is also all based on true stories.
In describing the difference between a wife who is “not good at cooking, doesn’t like it,” and “anything goes as long as it fills her stomach,” and a husband who “likes to eat, enjoys it, and wants to eat good food, no matter if it’s outside or prepared food,” the book goes into the family environment in which each of them grew up, rather than just who is better or worse. What is the reason for this?
“Because our media policy is ‘to be close to our readers,’ we believe that it is important to be close to the feelings of both parties first, not whether it is right or wrong. I think it is necessary to show a way to solve the problem in the article.
A development that makes us think about the meaning of food for families…
What is the meaning of a meal for a couple or a family?
“I think it’s different for each person and each family.
As you can see in the story, for some people, meals are a big part of their lives, while for others, they are not. In raising children, there are children who do not eat even though their parents do their best to prepare them. There are those who are too busy with housework or work to make time for meals. In spite of this, it can be hard to say, “Let’s try our best to make meals.
On the other hand, if you like to cook meals, or if you don’t like to cook but like to eat good food, it’s okay to have time and effort to spend on meals.
I think it’s up to the family to decide the right answer to “What is a meal for a family?
The film’s portrayal of diversity and its focus on food and cooking, which are closely related to everyone’s lives, made for an unexpectedly lively discussion.
The fact that the stories are true is what makes them so vivid and real.
So, what do you look for in readers’ stories, what do you consider important in deciding the theme of the series, and what do you do in your interviews?
I place importance on “empathy” and “souvenirs,” which are also part of our media policy. We prioritize reality in our themes, and try to cover problems that are considered to be in the minority in the world. We hope that readers will be able to relate to what we write about, and that it will be of some use to them in their future lives.
Interview and text by： Wakako Tago
Born in 1973. Worked at a publishing company and an advertising production company before becoming a freelance writer. In addition to interviewing actors and actresses for weekly and monthly magazines, she writes drama columns for a variety of media. JUMP 9 no Tobira ga Openitoki" (both published by Earl's Publishing).