June 22, 2022

Learn Japanese with 結婚できない男: 持ちつ持たれつ Mochitsu Motaretsu

Makoto+ Members, click here to download bonus files (PDF with dialogue + quiz + Sound Files) for this lesson. Not a member, click here to learn more.


結婚(けっこん)できない(おとこ) is a 2006 Japanese drama/comedy starring 阿部寛(あべひろし) (Abe Hiroshi – click here for his profile on Makoto+). A second season was released in 2019 reprising many of the same characters.

阿部寛(あべひろし) plays a 40-year-old architect who really doesn't like people. He enjoys being by himself and usually finds being with others a nuisance. He can be clueless and rude, but the people around him are determined to try to help him.

The characters in today's lesson:

  • 桑野(くわの)信介(しんすけ) – the architect who cannot get married. Played by 阿部寛(あべひろし)
  • 早坂(はやさか)夏美(なつみ) – the doctor played by 夏川(なつかわ) 結衣(ゆい)

阿部寛 Abe Hiroshi

The key phrase for today's lesson is:



[Kuwano] (まえ)から疑問(ぎもん)(おも)っていたんですが、医者(いしゃ)病人(びょうにん)がいるほうが(もう)かるのに、なんで(ひと)健康(けんこう)(ねが)うんですか?

Vocabulary & Notes

[Dr. Hayasaka] どうせ、医者(いしゃ)のいうことを()かずに、病気(びょうき)になる(ひと)がたくさんいますから。

Vocabulary & Notes

[Kuwano] ()ちつ()たれつってことか。

Vocabulary & Notes

[Dr. Hayasaka] (ちが)()がします。

Vocabulary & Notes

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  • Wow! Enjoyed this lesson! Watched the drama some years ago, but never stopped by this phrase. Going through even a small scene in detail makes the whole scene much more interesting and yes, I also noticed how he uses the phrase and why she feels it isn’t really so in this context :):). This lesson has given that motivation to start looking out for dialogues slowly and carefully, and enjoy our favorite dramas all the more.

    • Thanks! Yes, there are a lot of small things we as learners miss due to the fast pace and idiomatic word plays. I wish Amazon Prime had Japanese subtitles for 結婚できない男. Our family is enjoying it greatly right now, but it is easy for me to miss some of the details. That was partly the inspiration behind this video.

        • That’s great! I don’t see it on Netflix in the US, unfortunately. Still, it’s an amazing time to be a language learner. The volume of ways to stream and study is astounding.

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