「真陰、開幕」 (Shinkage Kaimaku)
“The True Shadow Opens”

Admit it, we all know what the attraction of this one is. The package has ecchi written all over it but if the first season is any indicator, Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Bride will likely present an ongoing plot device that keeps things highly interesting for the viewers.

I don’t think there’s any question based on what we saw from the premier that Hyakka Ryouran Samurai Bride intends to stick with its winning formula of the first season. The general premise encompasses a fictional modern Japan where the Tokugawa shogunate remained in power and not surprisingly, many of its famous samurai are of the hotter female variety in this setting. Continuing from where the first season left off, things started out rather comically as Yagyuu Muneakira (Hirakawa Daisuke) returns from his travels, only to find out his ancestry heirloom, the Yagyu Shinkage Dojo has been converted into a meido kissa (Maid café). No thanks to financial losses stemming from the Reiman Shock (Bad word play of the Lehman crisis), Sanada Yukimura’s (Kugimiya Rie) diabolical idea comes with the intention to make some quick bucks. As she aptly pointed out, there’s no easier way to mark-up the prices of your café merchandise than putting on a meido costume and I’ll be the first to admit I wouldn’t mind splashing some cash if I can get meido Tokugawa Sen (Kotobuki Minako) to “ketchup” my Omuraisu (Omelet Rice). It’s all fine and dandy until the episode takes a somewhat more serious turn when the wicked spirit of the Four Sword Demon, better known as the Dark SamuraiMiyamoto Musashi (Hikasa Yoko), Sasaki Kojirou (Shindo Naomi), Araki Mataemon (Tomatsu Haruka), Houzouin Inshun (Satou Satomi)  — paid them a visit and demanded a show down with Yagyuu Juubei (Yuuki Aoi). Unfortunately, Juubei was unable to transform into her Master Samurai form after her soul was sacrificed to prevent Yagyuu Gisen (Mizuhara Kaoru) from reviving Amakusa Shiro (main antagonist of season one). That led to the prompt defeat of Muneakira and his haremettes, and he was given a one-month deadline to bring forth the “real” Yagyuu Juubei before the full effect of his cursed body takes place.

I won’t lie to you – this is not your definition of a masterpiece but it’s certainly more interesting than what most of us give it credit for. Production-wise, I’m still a fan of the unique visual style that features frequent ink-splatters and think borders. They come in handy as a creative way of censorship and serve the show well by giving the modern setting a traditional feudal look. But that’s hardly the biggest draw of the show for me. The most obvious appeal has always been the beautiful character designs and the return of its all-star female cast. Yuuki Aoi, in particular, impressed me greatly with her wide voice-acting range as Yagyuu Juubei. The split personality of her character provides Yuuki-san the stage to stretch her voice across different spectrums, whether it’s the child-like performance of the current Juubei or the sadistic side of our yet-to-emerge golden-eyed Master Samurai. What’s more, it’s not just the main cast who sports some of the industry’s biggest name. Hyakka Ryouran has an equally remarkable list of notable voice actors – Kobayashi Yuu (Gotou Matabei), Gotou Saori (Hattori Hanzou), Koshimizu Ami (Charles de d’Artagnan or just Nia), Toyosaki Aki (Naoe Kanetsugu), Noto Mamiko (Maeda Keiji), Sakurai Takahiro (Tokugawa Yoshihiko) – to round up the supporting cast and that’s a headline that would make any seiyuu-honed ears stand up straight.

From a pure fan-service standpoint, Hyakka Ryouran delivered marvelously and the first episode certainly featured a copious amount of female nakedness that is bound to get our adrenaline pumping. But make no mistakes about it, the fan-service is not always the focus of the show and it’s usually presented tastefully in a manner that works as an enhancement for the comedic effect. Quite frankly, even if the fan-service were toned down or censored, I’ll still be watching the show just for its action-filled adventure, lovely characters and great RomCom moments. All-in-all, early signs are promising for fans of the series – the anime looks great and that lucky bastard Muneakira still has one of the best-looking harems in the anime universe. It should be a blast covering this show and I’m happy to announce I’ll be writing about Hyakka Ryouran on a regular basis starting this week. A great anime of the ecchi genre is tricky to do, but when it works, it’s a tremendously joyous ride and I‘m expecting wonderful things from the “Samurai Girls’ Story of Love, Courage and Kisses”.

Full-length images: 10, 13, 34, 36.


ED Sequence

ED: 「結果、偶然でござ候」 (Kekka, Guuzen de Gozasourou) by 柳生十兵衛(悠木碧)、真田幸村(釘宮理恵)、徳川千(寿美菜子) (Yagyu Jubei [CV: Yuuki Aoi ], Sanada Yukimura [CV: Kugimiya Rie], Tokugawa Sen [CV: Kotobuki Minako])



    1. I’ve always said that ecchi shows had a wide appeal, far beyond their presumptive target demographic- especially this one with its superior PLOT and BACKstory; these fine gentlemen of the…err…opposite orientation prove my point (jk)…XP

  1. I’m just going to assume that the next person to become the Master Samurai isn’t Hanzo or Matabei but a new addition to his harem, like that cat girl or something?

  2. Moe Moe Kyun Kyun, Moe Moe Kyun Kyun, Moe Moe Kyun Kyun!!! :3.

    D Artagnan shows up first with all her badassery and then the wtf happens.Meido cafes, this the year of the Meidos or something?

    I feel somewhat ashamed that I recognized Musashi instantly when the name was mentioned, but forgot all about Kojiro -_-.I forgot about Kanetsugu too, but who cares about her, really (just kidding, I love me some hamma).The other two dark samurai I don’t know who they’re based on at all.

    Most importantly though

    “Hanzou, what’s the scouter say about their power level!?” “IT’S OVER MASTER SAMURAAAAAIIIII!!!”

  3. I had the urge to facepalm after seeing the Maid Cafe take, but it turned out surprisingly entertaining. Hyakka Ryouran remains true to its roots of being fanservicey yet providing good action and humor.

    It’s probably safe to say you need to throw out all notion of taking the show too seriously and just enjoy the ride. Samurai Bride looks to be just as promising as its predecessor in terms of entertainment value, perhaps even more now that we’ve established the characters and perhaps even more new master samurai. Looking forward to more moe moe kyun kyun. 😀

    Here’s to hoping that every Naoe has it’s (her) day.

  4. I really enjoyed the first season and glad to see that the first episode is still just as fun. Love the cast of voice actors and it looks like this seasons even more promising. Yuuki Aoi’s dual role as Juubei was easily one of the treats of the show for me.

    Fun first episode with the character dynamics pretty much intact. However, I was a little frustrated with how easily Senhime and Yukimura were defeated. Looking forward to sadistic Juubei showing those Dark Samurai who’s boss.

    So glad to see this being covered on RC – Thanks Seishun!

  5. Nice to see this finally return. The Naoe “hate” is still as strong as ever, lol.

    I think one good thing about the series is that they don’t throw in a bunch of unimportant side characters. Every character they have so far has been made important in one way or another, so we tend to like each one of them in some way and would hate if anything bad happened to them.

  6. The return of the most skillfully censored show of all time. “When you can’t see it, it becomes art” – Shiroyasha from Mondaiji
    This is exactly what Hyakka Ryouran is. Inkcensor is the way to the future.
    I can’t wait for more deko bitch and I AM MY COTTAGE.

  7. @Seishun: I won’t lie to you – this is not your definition of a masterpiece.

    LOL at that – I love sarcastic humor. Good job on the review! I think you’d do a fine standing in for a temporarily MIA Stilts. Shame you don’t have the time to blog this. Maybe you and Stilts could “tag-team” reviewing the show taking turns each week. Just a thought.

    From a pure fan-service standpoint, Hyakka Ryouran delivered…

    No reason to mess with success. Overall, what I would expect from this series and that’s not a bad thing at all for ecchi fans. Should be another fun season.

  8. Not really what I expected Sei. Season one seemed better than this. And I thought Jubei(both Jubeis) disappeared after S1 yet the normal Jubei is here, alive.

    And the Dojo got turned into a meido cafe? Really? Are they trying to concentrate all their efforts into pure fanservice rather then the fight scenes I fell in love with from the first season? They got their butts kicked here by the Dark Samurais(LOL, Musashi Miyamoto is a dark samurai? That got my laugh.)

    Gonna give it 4 more episodes…

    The Moondoggie
    1. The reason for Jubei’s reapperance is due to the blu-ray release. The TV broadcast showed pretty much a *sad* end but in the blu-ray, there was an additional scene shown at the end in which Jubei comes back.

      Though from the looks of this first episode, it looks like she lost her other personality.

  9. AHAHAHAHA! i can’t believe i just watched this…” lie* i skimmed through” it was the porn panties man! THE PORNO PANTIES!!! ….but seriously after giving the first season 4 eps an getting sick of the shoddy animation and Japanese brush stroke gimmick i had enough…should this story even be taken………oh whatever

    BROOKLYN otaku
  10. I just recently watched the first season and liked it quite a bit. Boy was I surprised to discover that a new season will start airing just few weeks after that.

    First episode was great and it doesn’t feel like they lost any steam. You could even say it’s the other way around. It wasn’t a very fan-service-y episode but the comedy spot-on like something from the middle of the 1st season. Also, Juubei is as cute as usual :3

    I’m glad the series will be covered on RC.

  11. Not a bad start for season 2. I don’t know how far into the future the setting is but it’s certainly keeping up with today’s trends with Yukimura now using an ipad. Also I just noticed after a second viewing that the Black Card the Dark Samurai were using belongs to D’Artagnan. Guess I should have seen it sooner with the Eiffel Tower and French flag colors being big giveaways. It wouldn’t make sense for the Dark Samurai to be carrying a Black Card when they were just revived.

      1. I really thought at first that wow for being just resurrected these guys are loaded with cash. I doubted if they had credit cards back then but I just invoked suspension of disbelief, but Nia did just pay the Dark Samurai a visit earlier. So we now have a little idea of what they might have done to Nia and her squad…not to mention where a little of the credit for taking out the season 1 bad guys went.

  12. I get the feeling the the 4 Dark Samurai are there to help them power-up for the next REAL antagonist, the one who was supposed to have been resurrected in the last episode of season 1. By the way, we’ve seen the french girl’s card, damn curious where she and her fellow samurai are. I really don’t like the Shogun-ass getting away with all the vile things he did, even if he is now a true general.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *