Ashita, Mama ga Inai

Ashita, Mama ga Inai (明日、ママがいない, literally Tomorrow, Mother will not be here) is a 2014 television drama that first aired on Nippon Television (NTV) on January 15, 2014. It follows the stories of ten children living in an orphanage.[1] The drama stars child actresses Mana Ashida and Rio Suzuki, who are noted for their roles in the television dramas Mother and Woman respectively.[2]

Ashita, Mama ga Inai
Ashita mama ga inai drama poster.jpg
Publicity poster for Ashita, Mama ga Inai
Written bySaya Matsuda
StarringMana Ashida,
Rio Suzuki
Theme music composerYoshihiro Ike,
Kazuyoshi Saito
Ending themeDare ka Watashi o
Country of originJapan
Original language(s)Japanese
No. of episodes9
Executive producer(s)Hibiki Ito
Producer(s)Shota Fukui, Toshiaki Nanba
CinematographyRyuichi Inomata, Makoto Nakanuma
Editor(s)Shinji Nojima
Running time60 minutes
Original networkNTV
Picture formatHDTV 1080i
Audio formatStereophonic
Original releaseJanuary 15 (2014-01-15) –
March 12, 2014 (2014-03-12)
External links
Official website

The series aired for nine episodes and garnered an average viewership rating of 12.85% in the Kanto region.[3] The series was embroiled in a controversy due to its depiction of orphanages, which was criticized by Japanese welfare organisations.[1]


Maki was left in an orphanage, named Kogamo no Ie (コガモの家) lit. Duck's House after her mother was arrested for involuntarily causing hurt. Here, she meets "Post", a girl who was abandoned at birth at a baby hatch[clarification needed] and other children who have been abandoned by their parents or are taken into under state care due to a history of child abuse. Kogamo no Ie is run by Tomonori Sasaki, an eccentric housekeeper who runs the orphanage with an iron fist.

The children at the home faces discrimination from the wider society as well as the psychological trauma of being abandoned at the home. While many of the children harbour the hope of eventually being adopted into a loving family, Maki clings onto the hope that her mother would return one day to claim her from the orphanage.



Ashita, Mama ga Inai garnered a viewership rating of 14% in the Kanto region for its first episode.[4] However, due to the controversy it was embroiled in, the viewership rating for its second episode fell to 13.5%.[5] Overall, the series garnered an average viewership rating of 12.85% in the Kanto region.[3]

The cast's performance was well received by viewers, with 50.8% of the viewers expressing high satisfaction with the performance of the main cast in the series's first episode in a survey carried out by Oricon.[6]


After the first episode of the drama aired on January 15, 2014, there were widespread complaints from foster care associations, orphanages and Japan's only hospital that accepts abandoned children via a baby hatch, Jikei Hospital (慈恵病院).[7] Jikei Hospital criticized the depiction of such abandoned children, and in particular, against the naming of an abandoned child character "Post" because this constitutes "mental abuse" against children who were actually left at a baby hatch.[7] The controversy escalated on January 21, when Japan's national association for orphanages and other related organisations requested that NTV cancel the series.[1] The series was also mentioned during a session of the Japanese legislature,[8] when then-Welfare Minister Norihisa Tamura mentioned that "There were reports about a girl living in a children's home having hurt herself (after watching the drama)".[1]

Due to the controversy, Japanese advertisers such as Mitsubishi Estate and Kao announced that they would withhold their sponsorship of this series.[9] Thus, on January 22, the second episode was aired with none of the usual sponsorship credits.[10] while the third episode was shown with public service announcements in place of commercials.[9]

The controversy was resolved when Nippon Television offered to "give greater consideration to children" by making unspecified changes to the drama's script in a statement made to the nursing home council on February 4, 2014. The next day, the president of the national council for children's homes, Koichi Fujino, acknowledged the broadcaster's statement, and hinted that he will watch the series until its last episode.[1]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c d e "NTV drama controversy represents conflict between delicate issue and freedom of expression". Mainichi Shimbun (in Japanese). 2014-02-06. Archived from the original on 2014-11-07. Retrieved 2015-01-15.
  2. ^ 芦田愛菜、鈴木梨央と初共演で“泣ける”母なき子ドラマ主演. Oricon, Inc (in Japanese). 2013-11-29. Retrieved 2015-01-15.
  3. ^ a b 明日、ママがいない <日本テレビ>. Audience Rating TV (in Japanese). Retrieved 2015-01-15.
  4. ^ 芦田愛菜主演『明日、ママがいない』初回14.0%. Oricon (in Japanese). 2014-01-16. Retrieved 2015-01-15.
  5. ^ 芦田愛菜主演『明日、ママがいない』2話は13.5%. Oricon (in Japanese). 2014-01-23. Retrieved 2015-01-15.
  6. ^ 芦田愛菜の演技に好評価『明日、ママがいない』. Oricon (in Japanese). 2014-02-08. Retrieved 2015-01-15.
  7. ^ a b 日テレのドラマ「明日、ママがいない」への抗議問題。施設の子どもに対する「想像力の欠如」と「加害性」. The Huffington Post Japan (in Japanese). 2014-01-18. Retrieved 2015-01-15.
  8. ^ 明日ママ、影響調査へ 厚労相「全国協議会に確認したい」. Sankei Shimbun (in Japanese). 2014-02-03. Archived from the original on 2015-01-15. Retrieved 2015-01-15.
  9. ^ a b 日テレ「明日、ママがいない」スポンサー全社がCM見合わせ. Sanpo (in Japanese). 2014-01-27. Archived from the original on 2014-01-30. Retrieved 2014-01-28.
  10. ^ 「明日ママ」提供表示なし…一部CMがAC広告に差し替え. Sponichi (in Japanese). 2014-01-22. Retrieved 2014-01-28.

External linksEdit