Samurai 7 Review

Story:
After years of being oppressed by bandits, the rice growers of Kanna village decide it’s time to fight back. They then send out Kirara, their young priestess, and her younger sister to the nearby city to recruit some samurai for their cause. Unfortunately, all they can hope to pay the fighters is rice. Nevertheless, the search is begun. But with political games being played among the merchants in town and with the honor of samurai being a thing of the past, gathering together a team of fighters may prove more difficult than Kanna village bargained for.

Violence:
It should come as no surprise that the violence level in this show is quite high. Although blood isn’t seen too commonly, it does make a few choice appearances. It’s worth noting though that most of the things being hacked to bits are robots and machinery, as the setting for this show is a strange mix of past and future. Even so, the violence alone ranks this show a YA rating.

Language:
The language in this show isn’t overwhelming, but a curse is uttered now and again, such as the use of a da-m or a “b word.” Thankfully, it’s not gratuitous.

Nudity:
The only “nude” scene in this show is a bath scene with Kirara and a inn keeper. However, details are covered in fog and it’s rather short overall.

Theology/Mythology:
Kirara uses a strange gem stone thing to locate water and “guide” her. Any specifics on this remain very vague throughout the show. Also, closer to the end of the show, the act of “talking/praying” to one’s dead parents is seen, though briefly. It’s not a long or heavy scene, however, as such practices are common to Japan and thus need no explanation. Earlier in the show a legend about “gods” existing in heads of grain and protecting villages is brought up. It’s used as symbolism and treated like a fairy tale. It is worth noting that the only “religious” factor in this show is the reference to “sins.” It seems to refer to killing other people and the guilt involved in that. Kirara gets the strange idea that she has to “pay” for the sins of the samurai, which makes about as much sense as using a pogo stick on a tight rope. In any case, she says this repeatedly, but nothing ever comes of it.

Personal Impression:
I have rather mixed feelings about this show. Overall it’s quite good. It has decent music, good plot and pretty sweet visuals. Well, usually it does. Oddly, this show has a few episodes where the artwork will change drastically. It’s not a good change. It’s an attempt to imitate old Japanese art forms, but it’s quite distracting, messy and difficult to follow. Thankfully, it doesn’t happen often. Overall the characters are interesting to watch, although, sadly, the philosophical stuff common in samurai shows is laid on rather thick. This makes it hard to follow the reasoning of some of the samurai and it makes some characters rather unbearable. Kirara, for example, has a very high standard for fighters and feels that all should fall in line with said standards before they can considered “true fighters.” This makes no sense as her village is in a “fight or die” position. She really has no right to judge. Unfortunately these strange moments of enlightenment, occur randomly and often at times when it’s really hard not to scream at the screen: “Just get your job done!” Aside from that, however, this series is an enjoyable one. Though some characters make little sense, you can’t help but cheer Kanna village on to victory. And the villain at the end is another enigma. The suspense of not knowing the enemy’s reasoning or plans is quite a highlight.
So if you like fights, samurai and a bit of political intrigue in your anime, this is a good show to check out. Just be warned that if the artwork decides to get weird, it’s not your computer, bro.

Personal Rating: Young adult

Episodes: 26
Languages: Sub and Dub
Official rating: TV14
Genre(s): Fighting, fantasy, historical
Website: http://www.funimation.com/samurai-7
Legal streaming: Hulu
Screen shots:
   

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