0 Items | £0.00

VIEW BASKET

Samurai Girls

Friday 27th January 2012


Matt Kamen on why the Shogun must go on….

Samurai GirlsIn the world we know, the Tokugawa Shogunate lost power in 1868, at which point the capital changed name from Edo to Tokyo. In the world of Akira Suzuki's Samurai Girls, the course of Japan’s history took a significantly different path. The shogunate still exists into the present day, and the nation of Great Japan is still largely isolated from foreign nations. Instead of developing technologically, samurai still rule the day, right down to the school level.

At a school where the children of military families train in the way of the sword, the council mercilessly oppresses the student body. Muneakira Yagyu is one such student, tired of the bullying power plays of the upperclassmen and accidental founder of a rebellion that will have repurcussions far outside of the school’s walls. Luckily, he has the ability to ‘upgrade’ any female into a Master Samurai with a mere kiss, bequeathing them near-superhuman abilities in the process. With a rapidly expanding army of super-powered babes, the movement might just stand a chance!

While real history was markedly different, Samurai Girls takes a lot of inspiration from the actual figures in the 15th-16th centuries, when the Tokugawa Shogunate rose to power. Muneakira himself is based on Munenori Yagyu, who brought the Yagyu New Shadow School of swordsmanship to Edo. Though the school trained many in the style Munenori’s father Muneyoshi had mastered, it’s generally not believed kissing the teacher had any beneficial effect.

Samurai Girls

Muneakira’s first recruit to the cause is the similarly named but unrelated Jubei Yagyu. In the series, she switches from a gentle, childish innocent to a furious, almost demonic warrior when powered up by a kiss from Muneakira. The name Jubei Yagyu should be familiar to long-time anime fans, as the original samurai has been the inspiration for the likes of Ninja Scroll, Ninja Resurrection and even a light-hearted parody, Jubei-chan the Ninja Girl. The real world Jubei was the son of Munenori, and though actual records of his life are few and far between, he is popularly regarded as something of a Robin Hood figure, rebellious and protecting the common man from the excesses of a corrupt upper class.

Muneakira’s second Master Samurai is Yukimura Sanada, a 15-year-old who favours giant battle fans that she uses as both a shield and a tool to manipulate the wind. When powered up, her powers rage out of control but, unlike Jubei, can transform on her own accord. Her historical Samurai Girlsnamesake was the opposite of her unrestrained nature, known as a keen tactician who led small armies to victory over much larger forces. At one point known as the greatest warrior in Japan, Sanada would die in combat during the Siege of Osaka in 1615, beheaded following a brutal battle.

Many other characters in Samurai Girls take their origins from other pivotal figures of the period – lightning-powered Sen Tokugawa is named for an actual Tokugawa princess, while her retainer Hattori Hanzo shares a name with another lauded warrior. So while the series may well indulge in fanservice to a fair degree, there’s nothing to stop you getting a history lesson out of it at the same time!

Samurai Girls is out on UK DVD from Manga Entertainment.

MANGA UK GOSSIP

£
was £

FEATURED RELEASE

RECENT FEATURED POSTS

Christmas is coming soon and our friends at Urban Species have the perfect gifts for any anime fan!
Some fantastic Naruto announcements came out of this year's Jump Festa!

Cosplay: Attack on Titan

Eleanor Trace suits up as Mikasa Ackerman from the fan-favourite series
Eleanor Trace suits up as Mikasa Ackerman from the fan-favourite series Attack on Titan

FAIRY TAIL MUSIC: W-INDS

Tom Smith on the band behind Be As One
Unlike a number of the bands featured on the Manga UK blog, W-inds haven’t had much of a history with anime tie-ins despite their massive success. In fact, in 14 years they’ve only ever done two anime themes; their first in Akira Amano’s Katekyo Hitman Reborn!, and more recently with Hiro Mashima’s Fairy Tail, where their 29th single Be as One became its sixth ending.

One Piece Music Symphony

The Royal Philharmonic orchestra tackles the One Piece score
Anime composer Kohei Tanaka is to appear at London's Cadogan Hall as Jean Thorel conducts the One Piece Music Symphony with the Royal Philharmonic. Tickets on sale now...!

K the Animation

Andrew Osmond keeps calm and carries on
The start of an action anime series is often a bewildering experience, dropping the viewer into a whirlwind of unfamiliar folk having very big fights. K’s like that, but luckily the main character starts the show as baffled as us. Yashiro Isana is a bit different from the standard schoolboy hero

Cosplay: One Piece

Paul Jacques rounds up the best dressed fans
With a tip of the hat to the best-selling One Piece, Fayyaz Dawda cosplays as the bendy-limbed hero Luffy.
Parasyte is a manga by Hitoshi Iwaaki, published between 1988-1995 in Japan. It has since received two recent adaptations in the form of two live action movies and an anime from studio Madhouse. Both are available to purchase now in the UK.

Origa (1970-2015)

Remembering the Ghost in the Shell singer
Despite her great fame, her stage persona was so far removed from her everyday self that she was rarely recognised in the street. “It makes me happy,” she confessed, “that living in Japan has given me such a great opportunity to have a personal life and a professional life. But I never forget that I have a mother and two sisters back near Novosibirsk. I make sure to visit them every year.”
Contact Us   |   Refund Policy   |   Delivery Times   |   Privacy statement   |   Terms & Conditions
Please note your card statement will show billing by MVM. Samurai Girls from the UK's best Anime Blog.