360https://i.fiery.me/GWddr.jpg The story of atonement for past sins is a subject often explored in various works of art. A quick look at the synopsis of this series tells us that this story is no different. Set during the early Meiji era a former assassin now a wandering swordsman named Himura Kenshin wielding a nonlethal blade offering protection and aid to those in need. The recurring theme in the anime is Kenshins oath not to kill when facing fanatics and revolutionists who are willing to die for their cause. 360https://i.fiery.me/1LLtB.png The anime also known as Samurai X first aired in the winter season of 1996 in a time when Neon Genesis Evangelion Slam Dunk and Mobile Suit Gundam Wing aired just to name a few. Rurouni Kenshin is one of the more popular series of the 90s. The anime can be chopped up into three parts: The Introduction Arc the Kyoto Arc and the Filler Arc. I think it is important to describe each part individually. 360https://i.fiery.me/8UlAb.png The Introduction Arc the first 27 episodes are a bunch of shorter stories where the cast and era are being introduced and about a third of them are filler episodes. Most if not all of these filler episodes are simply skippable you could describe some of these as gagepisodes. They are pretty bad and simply there to slow the anime down from catching up to the manga because the manga was still being made at the time. I must say that there is a lot of criticism on the filler episodes and for good reason the comedy is pretty repetitive there is never any real danger and the characters become caricatures of their own selves. I would suggest skipping the early filler episodes entirely. 360https://i.fiery.me/QCB5N.png The Kyoto Arc episodes 28 to 62 is where the anime truly shines. Without spoiling the story the stakes are at an all time high when a mighty warlord threatens the peace in Japan. The story takes a more serious turn and cuts no corners in terms of animation. This is immediately noticeable in the first episodes of the arc when an old rival of Kenshin makes his appearance and sets the mood for the rest of the arc. The introduction of this antihero shifts the entire tone of the story from a more dreamy idealistic goodytwoshoes can never lose to a more ruthless and realistic approach of dealing with your problems even if it means abandoning everything you represent and fight for. You dont always get to choose and you dont always get it your way. To live in peace you sometimes need to get your hands dirty. 360https://i.fiery.me/GUNwd.png I wouldnt blame anyone for stopping after the Kyoto Arc because its pretty much downhill from here. Episodes 63 to 94 are a few episodic filler stories and three longer filler stories all pretty disappointing. The first features a swordman using the same style as Kenshin the second story is about black knights and the third is about warring clans of feng shui users. Nothing worth your time here except maybe the opening which they changed to show the fillers antagonists in the flickering flame effect. Despite promising starts of the first two of these filler stories I felt like it never truly becomes engaging and I lost interest pretty fast. 360https://i.fiery.me/IA2Af.jpg There is more to the story of Kenshin unfortunately it would never be translated from manga to anime as the show was cancelled while the manga was still being made. I would recommend reading the manga after the Kyoto Arc because the final arc is absolutely worth it. Also with two new movies releasing in the summer of 2020 concluding the story of Kenshin with the missing final arc and the new sequel manga of Kenshins travels to Hokkaido there should be plenty of new material for fans. But do not miss out on this show It captures the spirit of Kenshin in a way no adaption afterwards was able to. 360https://i.fiery.me/jCAft.png I can highly recommend Kenshin for its cannon material. It is a mustwatch show if you like intense samurai action. The show features some cool techniques and powers and it does not have the problem of escalating power levels. Overall I feel the story of Kenshin deserved better. I would give the Kyoto Arc a 9 but that would be too high of a rating for all 94 episodes. 360https://i.fiery.me/2x9Wm.png
70 /100
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