The Rurouni Kenshin Christian Saga continues
Lawrance M. Bernabo | The Zenith City, Duluth, Minnesota | 02/20/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"In Volume 17 of the "Rurouni Kenshin: Holy War," Himura Kenshin, the former Hitokiri Battousai is reduced to a minor character, not only because he has been blinded by Shougo's Rai Ryu Sen, but also because Sanosuke is the key figure in this particular story arc. Episodes 71-74 are part of the "Tales of the Meiji" period of the series and contiunes the saga of the persecuted Christians and the efforts of Shougo Amakusa, who believes himself to be a god and that his destiny is to claim vengeance for the dead by commanding an army of the faithful and fighting with the Hiten Mitsurugi style. Meanwhile, Sanosuke is falling for Shougo's sister, the devoute Magdaria.The four episode included are Episode 71 "The Conspiracy of Kaiou: Shougo Caught in a Trap," Episode 72 "Days of Remorse: The Sad Past of Shougo and Sayo," Episode 73 "The Sneering Demon: Shouzo and Karyu Sacattered in the Explosive Flames, and Episode 74 "Sanouske's Tears: An Enternal Farewell Befalls the Two." I thought that Volume 17 "The Holy War" would end the saga, but we still have the big fight between Shouzo and Kenshin to go. Shouzo is turned into a slightly more sympathetic figure as we learn the story of what happened to his parents and discover that Kaiou has been manipulating Shogo to further his own agenda of ruling Japan. But, of course, for fans of this anime it is the developing relationship between Sanosuke and Magdalia that is the most compelling. She is such a pure soul that she gets through his gruff exterior; but then she ends up changing more than him, which is not only a violation of our expectations but rather strange given her religious beliefs.If you have ever seen a Western version of Japan, such as the mini-series "Shogun" or the recent film "The Last Samurai," the episodes in this story arc represent the flips side as we get to see a Japanese perspective on Christianity. Of course I cannot vouch for either the historical accuracy or the cultural valditiy of these views, but it is certainly an interesting story line. Granted, this story line does not have the epic arc of the Kyoto storyline, but trying to do something that big again this soon was not the way to go. My main complaint is that when Magdalia's beliefs suddenly change it really undoes a lot of the pathos of her character."
Why didnt they follow the manga...
David Nakamura | San Diego, California United States | 12/09/2002
(2 out of 5 stars)
"What happened to the Kenshin saga?? The kyoto arc ended and in the manga the Jinchuu arc was not complete. So they made fillers. The shimabara arc (if you can even call it an arc since it only lasts a few episodes long) is about another Hiten Mitsurugi Ryu master (ok........) who is christian. Some boring sh** happens and he and kenshin end up dueling it out in the most unexciting final battle ever. I really wish they would have waited for the manga to finish. Even Nobuhiro Watsuki (RK's creator) was wondering why they gave it the Shimabara theme. At anime expo 2002 he was asked what he thought about the filler episodes, and he wondered why they couldnt do something more interesting, like make kenshin go to America. (That would be pretty funny) Dont waste your money on this. download it at the most."