Akitsu Masanosuke is a shy, self-conscious and slightly cowardly man with a goal of becoming a great samurai. However, when he is dismissed from his job after two days he must live the life of a ronin until he can return to service. So when a man named Yaichi approaches him offering food and a job as his bodyguard, it all seems too good to be true - that is, until Akitsu learns that this confident stranger is in fact a gangster of the Five Leaves who specializes in kidnapping and lives in the city’s red-light district. While the ronin’s sense of justice makes him think twice about accepting the offer, Akitsu’s grumbling stomach, his growing familiarity with the rest of the Five Leaves, and Yaichi’s determination to recruit the budding samurai, may well have other plans...
In feudal Japan, evil spirits known as mononoke plague both households and the countryside, leaving a trail of fear in their wake. One mysterious person has the power to slay the mononoke where they stand; he is known only as the Medicine Seller, and he vanquishes the mononoke using the power of his Exorcism Sword. However, in order to draw his sword he must first understand the Form, Truth and Reason of the mononoke. Armed with a sharp wit and keen intellect, the Medicine Seller wanders from place to place, striking down the mononoke in his wake.
Jubei Kibagami is just a wandering swordsman minding his own business... until fate lands him in the middle of a battle with the terrifying Devils of Kimon! Now the fate of all of Japan lies in the hands of a vagabond samurai, a deadly female ninja and a perverted old monk as they take on an enemy who is, literally, immortal.
Samurai Champloo is all about style, from the dj-style scratching scene changes to the hip-hop-inspired soundtrack to the eclectic character design. Mugen's fighting style is a funky meld of capoeira and limb-cutting, and Jin is the dramatic foil; he is all steel and old-school samurai style. What binds them together is the desire to test each other's abilities, and a promise to a girl named Fuu: to find the samurai that smells of sunflowers, who plays a pivotal role in her past. Together they travel through edo-era Japan, finding battle and comedy wherever they stop.
Although Sarai-ya Goyou is perhaps more serious in tone than Samurai Champloo, both revolve around highly unusual period characters and are driven by shady plots involving the less-than-savory side of society.
In the 6th year of the Kan'ei era, people enjoy a time of peace; skilled swordsmen are revered and respected, and their lives are their own. Amidst the tranquility, Lord Tokugawa Tadanaka decides, for his own amusement, to hold a fighting tournament in which real swords are used - though laws forbid their use. In a match to the death two highly-skilled swordsmen face off: the one-armed Fujiki Gennosuke, and the blind Iraki Seigen. As they take their respective stances, flashbacks paint a picture of the duo’s past and battle wounds; and thus, the real story begins...
Kotarou is a brash young orphan in war-torn Japan, on the run from mysterious pursuers with Tobimaru, his faithful canine companion. Clueless as to why anyone would want him, much less imperial warriors from mainland China, a chance encounter with a strange wandering swordsman could not be more unwelcome in Kotarou's skeptical eyes – especially when the stranger has a secret past that has caused him to seal his blade. Forced by circumstance to work together for survival, the unlikely duo forge a tenuous friendship that is threatened all too soon when Kotarou's pursuers thrust the two into a dizzying whorl of clashing ambitions between men both big and small. Will the stranger manage to overcome his past and save them both from peril with his blade?