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sylvacoer's Rurouni Kenshin Tv Review

Rurouni Kenshin

Rurouni Kenshin tv Review

Ten years after the beginning of the Meiji Era, a wandering samurai came to Tokyo. This man, known as Himura Kenshin later on, ends up living in a Kamiya Kasshin dojo and teach kendo for a living.

However, his life is not as simple, as turmoils arise from time to time, unfolding his true nature as the famous Hitokiri Battousai, the greatest killer of the Bakumatsu. However, vowing never to kill again, he tries as hard as he can not to draw his sword until the critical moment comes, and so far, manages to escape his bloody past.

Until the day when an old menace, in the form of Shishio Makoto, the successor to the Hitokiri Battousai, threatens the peace of the new Meiji Era. Shishio and his Juppon Gatana are ready to start a new revolution to correct the evils of Western influence, and forced Himura Kenshin, along with his new friends, once again raise his sword to protect their loved ones.

Credits: niomea

Story & Characters

<i>Rurouni Kenshin</i> is a well-known favorite among fans of historical fiction/fighting anime, for good reason. Not only is there really awesome (and sometimes unrealistic) sword fights, but the characters, especially Himura Kenshin and his nemisis/questionable ally, Saitou Hajime, are surprisingly multi-faceted. Not to mention there is actual character development in pretty much every regular character!
The historical fiction aspect was what really hooked me, though; I wound up doing a bit of research on the Meiji Era, and rereading James Clavell's <i>Gai-jin</i> to get some real-world and other literary interpretations of the time period.
As much as I enjoyed the enime, though, I am finding that the manga is ever so much better, both in keeping up a consistent plotline and not wasting time on otherwise silly filler-episodes. The story quickly becomes darker than in the anime, and Watsuki, an unabashed fan of the Shinsen-gumi, is more than willing to bring up little tidbits of Bakumatsu history that impacted the later Meiji era.
Of course, one should not think of <i>RK</i> as a history lesson, but more as a fun point to start exploring history.

Rating: 8

Art

RK was produced back in the early 1990's, so that art is not quite on par with the digital stuff nowadays. The first season especially had rather simplistic and sometimes sub-standard animation (especially in the filler episodes). By the Kyoto arc, however, it seems like the animators had got their stuff together - not only was the style striking, but the fight sequences (I'm thinking mostly of the Saitou-Kenshin dojo fight here) were just plain kick-ass. But even then, there were times where the style changed markedly, in some instances from one episode to the next!

I know it sounds like I'm putting the animation down a lot, but that's because I can't help but compare it to the manga, which once again, outshines the anime.

And not just because the manga Kenshin DOES NOT wear pink!

Rating: 7

Sound

I must state here and now that I HATE DUBS and will never watch an anime in English if I can help it. That said, I have not the time, words, space, or patience to lambast the dub of RK to the degree it deserves. suffice it to say, the dub stank - it seemed that the voice actors had not bothered to learn how to pronounce any of the NAMES let alone the attacks. Kenshin wasn't so bad, but several characters suffered greatly. The best (or worst, as it may be) example is Misao, who's Japanese voice was so cute (especially in her image song!) I instantly liked her - her dub voice was harsh, grating, and just downright obnoxious!

Thankfully, the music can't be ruined by evil dubbers - the OST, especially the instrumentals, were thoroughly enjoyable. I can listen to the "Departure Suite" and "Kimi wa Dare wo Mammotte Iru" all day! My favorite OP/End songs, in no order are: "Heart of Sword," "Namida wa Shitte Iru," "Tactics," and "It's Gonna Rain!"

Rating: 8

Presentation

As I said in the plot review, I loved the historical fiction aspect. I also loved the physical comedy that came into play, especially in the first epsiodes. I remember how in the first episode, Kenshin ran into Kaoru's bath because she thought she was trying to kill herself, and....yeah, you get the idea! Kenshin is a goof-ball on par with Vash the Stampede when he's rurouni, and his "oro!" is now an official part of my vocabulary. Of course, I mention Kenshin as rurouni only to bring up his "Battousai" aspect - talk about split-personality issues! The whole angst about his Bakumatsu past was what made RK that much more memorable, especially after I watched the OVAs (which I will review seperately, in case you were wondering). Also, I thought it was incredibly appealing when he went all golden-eyed and murderous. Buuuuuut that just the fangirl in me.
I've watched RK several times through, and I intend to hang onto my DVDs for a long time - <i>Rurouni Kenshin</i> is a definite keeper!

Rating: 8

Final Verdict

7.83 (good)

Reviewed by sylvacoer, Oct 18, 2004

Comments

  1. BatosaiRyu Oct 28, 2004

    Quote by VampireI believe that this anime deserves something more that 7.3,well, I believe it *lol*
    In my country they it transmitted for cable only an occasion, I saw it and remain enchanted, since it's fill with history and drawings of high quality.
    Bad only one that I find in this anime version (very faithful to the manga version) is that it has few chapters (Short duration) :(

    I would agree with Vampire. I think that it should get a higher rating. That is just my preference and opinion though.

  2. Ari-chan Nov 01, 2004

    I agree with what you said sylvacoer about story and presentation. But I kinda disagree with some of the things you said about art, and sound. I thought the dub was actually very decent. The voices (for the main characters at least) seemed to fit rather well. Misao is supposed to be a rather spunky, cheerful person, whose temper and hot headedness can get the best of her, I think Debra Cunningham did a decent job of pulling that off, though I agree with you about Misao's japanese voice sound a tad cuter. The dub wasn't the best, but it certainly didn't stink IMO.

    Art seemed very well done for something as old as 1996. Sure it isn't as good as the digitally produced things now, but for its time, it was considered good, clean, and vibrant. The real downfall in animatio0n to me were the fillars after the kyoto arc. It seems after that since there was no basis for what they were creating (meaning no reference from Watsuki's work), they went and produce a less clean, more simplistic look than that of Tokyo or Kyoto. It just didn't seem like they were trying to make it look good.

    Everything Above was based on my personal opinion. I am not saying anything you said is wrong, I'm just giving my view on the matter. I also agree with Vampire about the rating deserving to be higher, but that the Kenshin fan inside me talking.

  3. ruroken Nov 04, 2004

    They should have a poll for ratings on anime... a 1-10 thing... So that the reviews arent exactly the last say-so...

  4. Aztec Nov 04, 2004

    Im a big fan of RR And I think it deserves a higher rating. The only thing bad I can say about Ruroni kenshin is that when the last episode that was made end song left me feeling like there was still more about the series, I felt that, that particular episode didnt seem like and end for a great series (I needed some closure)

  5. sylvacoer Nov 05, 2004

    Ooo, wow, I'm so getting slammed for my low rating of RK, and I'm a huge fan! Before anyone takes a contract out on me, let me say that RK is my favorite anime and always will be! It's just that everything that happened after the Kyoto Arc in the anime didn't follow the manga storyline at all, and by comparison, both the style and the story suffered greatly! If I had the ability to rate everything up through the Kyoto Arc seperately, I'd give the series a 9.5, AT LEAST!
    So, please fellow RK fans, don't hurt sylvacoer! (*~*)

  6. Arlekin Nov 23, 2004

    ah, lo siento por el idioma. quiero acotar que rurouni kenshin es muy MUY buena... una exelente trama y obra. Lo que mejor sin duda son los OVAs (pero solo los 4 primeros). Nobuhiro Watsuki en su notable desarrollo de personajes creo una jolla de manga...

  7. Arlekin Nov 23, 2004

    ah, lo siento por el idioma. quiero acotar que rurouni kenshin es muy MUY buena... una exelente trama y obra. Lo que mejor sin duda son los OVAs (pero solo los 4 primeros). Nobuhiro Watsuki en su notable desarrollo de personajes creo una jolla de manga...

  8. PureTypeDZanza Nov 28, 2004

    O.O a 7.8/10 what the!!! Kenshin deserves a higher rating!! But yeah i agree with you sylvacoer after the Kyoto Arc everything went downhill but some of the episodes were pretty good though. If the creator Nobuhiro Watsuki remade Rurouni Kenshin again with the first two ova's animation and then added the Jinchu Arc then i would be happy.The dubbed version was pretty good except for Miss Tae and Kamatari but all in all Rurouni Kenshin is a definite keeper.

  9. badtz-maru Apr 06, 2005

    it's a good show, but yeah it ranks at least an 8. RK should be shown in translation, but it should be translated word for word, without the degration of the story or dialog. but hay what can you do huh? as for the filler, it's good to have a laugh once in a while and just be silly. not everything can be "save the city, country, planet, blah blah blah." that is unless you wanted RK to be more like dbz?? :nya:

  10. nainoi Sep 27, 2009

    It's a good anime.

  11. UberDog Mar 23, 2015

    As there isn't much structure to the review, you did a decent job over all on the review. But this is a good review all the same.

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