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In November 1980, a murder in Kanagawa Prefecture just south of Tokyo stunned the nation. It involved a 20-year-old student who beat his parents to death with a metal baseball bat.

Books and televised dramas followed in an attempt to comprehend the crime or capitalize on its horror. But it wasn’t until November 1996 that another horror story involving a metal bat again shocked Japanese society into realizing the scale of dysfunctionality in households across the country.

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