I'M WRITING THIS REVIEW FOR THE ANIME ITSELF (...separately from the Manga version's review)
I grew up from this anime. And honestly, I'm quite biased about this series since this was a big part of my childhood and it was one of the main reasons why I have started to love anime's. The art-style, the traditional set-up, and the cultural relevance of the story, together with the iconic main character... Yeah, I guess, this review would slightly hinge on how I had admired it so much back in the days. It still is one of the best, and it still stood the test the time, given with how many times it had been adapted to several animated movies, OVAs, live-action films (which is personally, I still think is the best live-action adaptation based from an anime/manga I had seen up until now).
Rurouni Kenshin (Samurai X) is very relevant with its historical significance. And to top it off, it even provides us a set of very intense and multi-dimensional characters who uniquely mirrored the very angst of being humans in their own ways. It's not too upscale with too much of drama and it does not rely so heavily in the adventure. But the action scenes are very constructive and impressive considering that this is an old anime and had a very limited form of art-style. Moreover, the story also progresses so smoothly with a lot of intricate and interesting details with the backstories that will make you feel as if all these characters (main or supporting) were actually based off from real people (which is also slightly a fact but it's not completely the entire thing). I love this anime not because it had introduced me so conveniently to the world of animated series, but because it offers something else that I didn't find from other animes before.
This anime is very subtle with reality and it is very direct with how it represented the idea of historical Japan way before modernity came into action. It actually took me a few years before I had finally noticed how deep this anime was (story-wise) and it actually made me love it even more. It was considerably a very good visual literature in its finest, fictionalizing reality and making it a slightly soft-toned animation that isn't too bleak and not too bold to start with. It's just a simple ride of exploration with a plot driven by the main character's resolve to his conquest. It is a series that gives one a complete serving of drama, comedy, romance, history, and action all in one go and the more you are captivated by it, the more it makes you feel the weight of the burden that Kenshin (the main character) is struggling with and how the entire situation of Old Japan during the war had brought him into the phase of dealing with his dark past and his search for purpose and belonging.
Though, as much as I wanted to romanticized the entire idea of this series, I also don't want to deny the fact that it still had its own shortcomings. The first third of this 95-episode anime is what would actually keep you on the hook because of the twists and the plot that keeps it together... But if I were to judge it, I give it a four because I somehow found a lapse on the second part, though it still held its significance to the conclusion of the ending. I love the characters so much and despite of the slightly dull part towards the ending, it didn't stop me to continue on and personally, I loved how they concluded it...
So much for this to even be reviewed, but I could not really say too much about it all because I have been too affected after reading the manga version and... To be honest, I would really recommend everyone to read the manga... It will completely satisfy you and it's way deeper and emotional than the anime.
BUT JUST A REMINDER!!! I strongly suggest... watch it FIRST before reading the rest. It will hit you differently... And anyways, this is just a personal review not that I know so much about what's best and what's not. ^^
***Anime technicality will be 8.75
xoxo... Nanamoon recommends this!