The late writer Kuniko Mukoda was famous for her teleplays, which portrayed Japanese family life in a more realistic light than almost anyone else’s TV scripts. This week, NHK starts a six-part dramatization of one of her novels, meaning a story that she didn’t write directly for the small screen.

The central character in “Kurumi no Heya” (“The Chestnut Room”; NHK-G, Tues., 10 p.m.) is Momoko (Nao Matsushita), who becomes her mother’s main support after her father (Keizo Kanie) goes missing, as well as the principal authority figure for her younger sisters. Eventually, her father’s subordinate, a younger man named Tsuzuki (Taizo Harada), informs Momoko that he thinks he knows where her father has gone, and that if she wants, he will try to talk him into coming home.

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