[Anime] Rurouni Kenshin Rewatch: Introduction

Sunday, May 1, 2011 Laura Fitzgerald

Okay, I've been wanting to do this for a while now, and because of THIS I feel pretty darn motivated to finally commit to it.

You might want to look away for a moment. I'm going to have a fangirl meltdown for just a minute before getting into a serious explanation of the series. I'm sorry; I can't help myself. After ten long years, the universe has seen fit to give my favorite Anime of all time some small revival.

Fangirl Momment (Watch out!): OMG OMG OMG!!!  *breathes*  OMG OMG!!  

Brief Summary:  Rurouni Kenshin follows a "peaceful" swordsman by the name of Kenshin Himura who has taken a vow never to kill again as he tries to find a life for himself in the Meiji era of Japan.  The brief Meiji era is one of my favorite time periods to study.  It is a period of rapid westernization for Japan, yet many still struggle on to maintain the old ways of life.

It has been over ten years since the television series ended in Japan after a disappointing third season. In the U.S. the Rurouni Kenshin anime was distributed by Media Blasters and the manga by Viz Media.  It was well received in both countries and was briefly run on cable as a part of Cartoon Networks' Toonami line-up.

Realistically, I'm expecting a new straight to DVD film(s), but with the recent treatment that Inuyasha, Full Metal Alchemist, Dragon Ball Z, and Evangelion all received it's hard not to hope for more.  What would make me happy would be to see the Jinchuu ARC done properly.  The Jinchuu ARC was a storyline in the final volumes of the manga that was never animated for the television series, and only briefly recapped in the Seishouen OVA that came later after the television series had ended. What would make me happiest to the point that my heart might explode would be to see the series redone like Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood - newly animated and adhering more closely to the manga.

I will be watching the episodes in English although I imagine this might be irritating to some fans.  I know, I know - I know all about the flaws, but I am incredibly fond of Richard Cansino's voice as Kenshin Himura and several of the other cast members.  I appreciate the original Japanese and I think Mayo Suzukaze does a wonderful job, but this is a rewatch after all and the English dub is how I most often chose to watch the series when I was younger.

It's been almost six years since I last watched all the episodes.  I've been a fan of the series since the first DVD release in 2000. It pains me sometimes to think about how much money I spent collecting that 26 volume series.  At almost $30 dollars a DVD in those early days (including tax), I spent $1,000 dollars on Rurouni Kenshin.  Eeep!  The dumb things we do in high school when we don't have to pay rent, right?  But on the other hand, I think I had a lot of fun waiting on pins and needles all month for the next installment.  Now-a-days, we are able to leap into the fansubs while we wait which isn't quite as thrilling in my opinion.  Some things are worth waiting for.

I only hope that I'll be able to say those same words after the new Rurouni Kenshin project finally airs.


Nick Enlowe said...

Sad to say I missed this anime when it first came out. Maybe your rewatch is my second chance?--(I love a good rewatch/reread.)

Laura Fitzgerald said...

@Nick I hope so! :) I think what I'm most worried about is the fear of it not living up to my memories.

Maddz said...

OMGOMGOMGOMG *fangirl moment*
I already heard about this, but I SO AGREE WITH YOU ABOUT THE JINCHUU ARC!! If they use that, I might just explode from happiness. FAVORITE STORYLINE! Are they going to have the same voice actors for the english version? Or wait...IS there going to be an english version?

Laura Fitzgerald said...

@Maddz No clue. It'll be some time before we hear about North American licensing, but my assumption would be that Funimation would pick it up. I hope they'll pursue the original vocal cast as they did for Dragon Ball Z Kai.

P.S. I love that your fangirl moment was identical to mine. *high fives* :)

Manga Therapy said...

I am hoping that the Jinchu Arc is animated. The anime never got a proper ending, if you ask me.

Speaking about the Jinchu Arc, I wrote about the drama between Kenshin, Enishi, & Tomoe. Hope you like it!


I think the series will be shown on TV for a new generation of fans. They just had a PSP game out, why not go even further with the anime on TV.

Laura Fitzgerald said...

@Manga_Therapy I'll definitely check it out. I do so hope that they animate the Jinchu Arc. Some really powerful stuff is found there that the third OVA did not do justice to.

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