Recently I found myself really deeply interested in Japanese history. And I can't deny the fact that it is thanks to the samurai anime.
The first samurai anime I saw was The sword of the stranger. My friend told me it was great so I watched it. I also have to admit that the main reason was soundtrack to this anime... I just love it. But never mind. After watching this, I didn't really mind to watch or not to watch another samurai story...
And that was when Rurouni Kenshin came. As sad as it may sound, I had never heard the names of "Bakumatsu", "bushido", "Hijikata Toshizou" or "Saitou Hajime" before. I was born in a small country in Central Europe so Japanese history wasn't really much of an interest to me. But again, that was when Rurouni Kenshin came.
I simply fell in love with that red-haired good-natured rounin who fights with his reverse blade sword. So far the last anime I watched has been Bakumatsu Kikansetsu Irohanihoheto. Again, main character is a samurai.
I think I can quite well compare Rurouni Kenshin and The sword of the stranger. Both Kenshin and Nanashi want to never kill again but still they want to protect the ones they care about. On the other hand Akizuki, main character of Bakumatsu Kikansetsu Irohanihoheto, has to kill (and doesn't seem to be bothered by that fact). It is his destiny after all to kill... he is called the Eternal Assassin.
Akizuki as a character is a bit different from Kenshin and Nanashi so I don't think me liking those three series is based on the character similarities. I think it is the samurai thing after all.
After watching Rurouni Kenshin, I spent a lot of time on the internet trying to google out all the characters and groups and periods of Japanese history I got to know thanks to this anime. And still, I can say I know nothing about Japanese history and interesting people. It is sad though...
But it is not what I wanted to write about. I love samurai. Not one particular anime character or real historical person (even though those bishies in Hakuouki are hot ^^ ) just the concept of samurai ethic... the justice, loyalty, honour... I know these are the virtues of many warriors from all around the world... but you know, samurai is a lot more attractive than just some crappy Central European knight... And when it comes to fighting... I just love the dangerous flash in all samurais' eyes when they have to protect their friends or they honor... the looong time before they unsheathe their katanas and the quick movement of them warding off a danger... That's what makes me sing a catchy phrase from a catchy DDR song... "I'm searching for a man all across Japan just to find, to find my samurai. Someone who is strong and still a little shy, yes, I need, I need my samurai!"