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[ café reviews ]

Kenshin discovers the true order of the food chain...
Rurouni Kenshin logo

Rurouni Kenshin
(Samurai X)

Episode 3: Kanashimi no Kenshi Kako o Kiru Otoko

[ production info ]

Copyright: Fuji Television Network Inc., Sony Pictures Entertainment (Japan) Inc.
Length: 25 mins
Rating: Contains Violence, Parental Guidance Suggested
Format: Original Japanese (LD/VHS)

Screenplay: Director: Producers: Character Design: English Version Executive Producer: Translation by:

[ plot summary ]

Kenshin TV LD 1 jacket

The police have come to Kamiya Dojo in search of Kenshin after having heard from the imposter Battousai that the real hitokiri Battousai was at Kamiya Dojo. However, all is not well as the "chosen" Kenkaku Keikantai are making trouble in town. What can Kenshin do against this special policing group if the police are after him... then again, is that even on his mind as he goes to town with Ayame and Suzume to buy some tofu for lunch? Why do the police want Kenshin, and who is the man in the carriage who seems to be waiting outside Kamiya dojo?

[ capsule review ]

Some unexpected visitors -- and they seem to know who the rurouni is.

A death-sentence has been passed...

This episode (and likewise this story's counterpart in the manga) mainly serve to give a hint about Kenshin's background by introducing someone that he apparently knew during the Bakumatsu fighting. Apparently a powerful figure in Japan, Yamagata was looking for Kenshin to ask for his help in building and maintaining the new Meiji era. This glimpse brings many questions to mind; just who was hitokiri Battousai, what was his role in the Bakumatsu fighting and the end of the Edo Period, and what side was he on in all the fighting? This and many other questions are brought up and will hopefully be answered in the following episodes. While the series is not completely historically accurate, it is based loosely on the history of that time, and as such it really makes you want to know more about Japanese history during this unstable period.

Primary to this episode was the development of Kenshin's character and the (slight) expansion on his personal history, otherwise, the story itself has definite weak points. Really now, the police are going to attack the town folk indiscriminately and kill everyone and expect (for all that they are permitted to kill people) that this will in turn be overlooked by the authorities? Umm... maybe not. However, despite these weaknesses, I found the character development which occurs to more than make up for these weaknesses.

The voice acting in this episode was a bit weaker on the part of the incidental characters, although the major characters voice acting has been quite good as per usual in this series. The animation quality has also been as per usual in this series, although here we see the "walking in place" effect which has always annoyed me when I see it in this series. There's nothing more disappointing than seeing a character walking in place when the rest of the background is very nicely drawn and indeed the walking itself is decently done.
- JYN, 98.08.12

[ café rating ]

Original: Subbed: Dubbed:
Story: 4 stars N/A N/A
Direction: 3 stars N/A N/A
Acting: 3 stars N/A N/A
Animation: 4 stars N/A N/A
Music: 3 stars N/A N/A
Translation: N/A N/A N/A
Overall Rating: 3 stars N/A N/A

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