Wednesday, March 17, 2010

新選組 Shinsengumi So Far....

The Shinsengumi has been the subect of films and television drama for some time. I had first heard of them when I first had seen the 1969 classic film of the same title starring Toshiro Mifune. But looking back to that film, I was left unsatisfied due to the way they tried to tell a long in depth story in brief. So recently I recently purchased a bootleg copy of the 2004 NHK 43rd Taiga Drama Shinsengumi that featured the exploits of the Shogun's "Newly Selected Corps" that policed the streets of Mibu to protect the Tokugawa Shogun in Kyoto during the last years of the Bakumatsu Period. So far we are thirteen episodes out of this 49 episode drama and we are loving it!

Shinsengumi stars Katori Shingo as Kondo Isami - the leader of the Shinsengumi, Yamamoto Koji as Hijikata Toshizou, and Fujiwara Tatsuya (who you may remember from Battle Royale) as the famed progeny Okita Soji. So far the acting is superb and the storyline riviting in the fashion you would come to expect from an NHK Taiga Drama. Depending on who you talk to, the Shinsengumi will always been seen as heroes, villianous ronin, or stubborn patriots who are both villified and revered to this day. We still have many episodes to go, so we will write more about this as we continue this series.

1 comment:

  1. That '04 Taiga was the first Taiga I started watching. I watched almost every episode and it is still one of my favorite.

    I agree about Mifune's Shinsengumi movie. I didn't like it. They tried to cram the story through and it was vary abrupt at the end.