First, I want to start by saying a big thank you to Michelle W. for sending this our way. We would have completely missed it if not for her!
Second, if you liked Samurai Gourmet you’ll love Sunshine Sento Sake! (As long as you’re okay with seeing a ton of butts and old man bodies.)
No Japanese class you ever take will teach you sentō etiquette. There are certain rules you won’t be able to learn unless you have an old homestay grandpa or… you watch this show.
Sunshine Sento Sake is about a young salaryman who works for an advertising company and isn’t very good at his job. Instead of looking for more customers around the city, he ends up going to the local sentō (a specific type of public bath in Japan) and then getting a beer and some beer-appropriate foods.
The show doesn’t quite meet the production quality of Samurai Gourmet, but it does have all the same charm. Why is this important for you, a Japanese learner?
Because going to sentō is something everyone should do at least once or twice in their lifetime! They’re disappearing, you know! Young people just don’t go to sentō like they used to, so they’re all shutting down!
What I mean to say is, no Japanese class you ever take will teach you sentō etiquette. There are certain rules and customs and things you just don’t do; things you won’t be able to learn unless you have an old homestay grandpa or… you watch this show.
Oh yeah, and the Japanese is perfect for late-beginner to intermediate types who want to learn all about sentō: paying, where to put your clothes, where to put that towel (at least if you’re a person with 金玉), when you should bathe, and what different sentō offer. There’s also a whole bunch of other things about work language, restaurant ordering, and much more.
There are 12 episodes and they all have English subtitles (no Japanese, I’m afraid). You need an Amazon Prime account to watch, but it seems like all of us have one at this point. Prime Day may be a bust, but hey, adorable Japanese shows to study with + two day shipping is totally worth it, ね?