Ranked #18
Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Kenkaku Romantan - Tsuiokuhen

Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Kenkaku Romantan - Tsuiokuhen

Alternative Titles

English: Samurai X: Trust and Betrayal
Synonyms: Rurouni Kenshin: Tsuiokuhen, Rurouni Kenshin: Reminiscence
Japanese: るろうに剣心―明治剣客浪漫譚―追憶編


Type: OVA
Episodes: 4
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Feb 20, 1999 to Sep 22, 1999
Duration: 30 min. per episode
Rating: R - 17+ (violence & profanity)
L represents licensing company


Score: 8.881 (scored by 56795 users)
Ranked: #182
Popularity: #325
Members: 93,566
Favorites: 2,975
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.

Popular Tags

action drama historical romance samurai


In the days before the Japanese Revolution, Hiko Seiijuro, a wandering master swordsman and hermit, encounters a bandit raid on a slave wagon. Hiko kills the raiding bandits in hopes of saving as many lives as possible, but only manages to spare one life from the massacre. Hiko leaves the child, advising him to go to the nearby village and have them take care of him. A few days later, as Hiko comes back to check upon the child he saved, he is shocked to see the child had created graves, both for the slaves he befriended and the bandits who killed them. Seeing potential in the young one, Hiko takes the child under his wing, names him Kenshin, meaning "heart of sword," and teaches him about the art of swordsmanship under the Hiten Mitsuruugi Ryu.

Struggling in a constant challenge with his ideal beliefs reflecting against the harshness of reality, Tsuiokuhen tells the melancholic and dark story of Himura Kenshin as one of the most feared assassins of the Japanese Revolution: the Hitokiri Battousai.

[Written by MAL Rewrite]

Add episode Episodes

Episodes  0 / 4
Aired  Feb 20, 1999 to Sep 22, 1999
Status  Finished Airing
No data, yet..

Related Anime

Adaptation: Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Kenkaku Romantan
Sequel: Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Kenkaku Romantan

Characters & Voice Actors

Himura, Kenshin
Himura, Kenshin
Suzukaze, Mayo
Suzukaze, Mayo
Suzuki, Masami
Suzuki, Masami
Yukishiro, Tomoe
Yukishiro, Tomoe
Iwao, Junko
Iwao, Junko
Uchida, Minoru
Uchida, Minoru
Nakao, Ryuusei
Nakao, Ryuusei


Campbell, Charles
Producer, Recording Engineer, ADR Director
Furuhashi, Kazuhiro
Hata, Shouji
Sound Director
Matsumoto, Jun

Write a review | More reviewsReviews

Aug 13, 2008
There's a universally accepted truth as far as anime shounen stories go: nine times out of ten, the manga is better than the anime adaptation. While that is the case with Rurouni Kenshin as a whole, what Studio DEEN did with Rurouni Kenshin: Tsuiokuhen can be called nothing short of a masterpiece. In the manga, Nobuhiro Watsuki describes Kenshin's past that's full of strife and hardship, but with a touch of comedy to help tone down the entire seriousness of the situation. Studio DEEN abolished what little comedy Watsuki went with and, along with flawless animation, a unique art style, and a beautifully composed soundtrack read more
I found this review Helpful  Not Helpful
Jul 7, 2007
Also named: "Samurai X: Trust and Betrayal", this is a prequel to the anime series 'Rurouni Kenshin."

One word for this anime: Amazing! It's so good that it's hard to decribe. This is one of the only anime series that will make the viewer's jaw drop to the floor and be filled with emotion. Those who are Rurouni Kenshin fans will love it; those who are new to the series will still like it. It's a drama and may not be as interesting among younger viewers and is more mature than the anime. Those who are sensitive to extreme violence and blood may want to turn read more
I found this review Helpful  Not Helpful
May 29, 2013
Surprising though it may be, it’s really incredibly rare to find a samurai anime that is actually good. As far as the samurai genre goes, Akira Kurosawa pretty much closed the book with 1954’s “Seven Samurai” and since then, is seems as if whenever anyone attempts to tackle the genre, there exists a mysterious force that compels them to strip away any and all sense of authenticity and add in superpowers, vampires, aliens, or hip-hop (not that that is necessarily a bad thing but it certainly gets tiresome). That’s one of the reasons why Rurouni Kenshin: Tsuiokuhen is so refreshing, it daringly tackles the story read more
I found this review Helpful  Not Helpful
Dec 1, 2009
The word masterpiece is used too much these days.. I haven't seen anything that deserves that title as much as Rurouni Kenshin: Tsuiokuhen. While the original Rurouni Kenshin is meant as a typical shounen (comedy, action, a bit of romance?), this is a serious historical drama. Those words might turn you off, but you'll be surprised how well it is done: never is Tsuiokuhen truly slowpaced, never will the action be disappointing, never will the animation cease to amaze you. And the music. Ah, the music. Taku Iwasaki at his best.

Story - 10.

A serious, sad story. A romantic drama. Or is historical a better word? read more
I found this review Helpful  Not Helpful


Similar in depth and action, it's more emotional although not as realistic. 
reportRecommended by helldude89
Engaging historical stories of ninja and samurai with a very similar storyline and plenty of action, violence, and gore.
In both the protagonist is an homicidal ronin sword master who develops a romantic relationship with a beautiful woman encountered during his journey.
Both anime are extremely nice to watch and have the same tragic ending. 
reportRecommended by RenaPsychoKiller
Both shows take place in feudal Japan, a time during which samurai were prominent. Although the plot is widely different between Tsuiokuhen and Sword of the Stranger, each show gives amazing and graphic sword battles in conjunction with a beautiful soundtrack. In addition, the feeling that both shows give you can be deemed similar.  
reportRecommended by VK11
Both have intense, brilliantly choreographed, and lavishly animated swordfights and stories that explore themes such as vengeance and the morality of killing. In stark contrast to RuroKen's quiet, contemplative and sentimental tone, however, Afro Samurai is rife with energy, black comedy (in more ways than one), and an overall pop-culture vibe. Where RuroKen's story and presentation can be described as "beautiful", Afro Samurai's would be more accurately described as "badass". 
reportRecommended by Ni_Go_Zero_Ichi
Both anime are dark, tragic tales revolving around warriors who find themselves struggling to abandon compassion in order to become more efficient fighters while at the same time clutching onto the few people they still love. The protagonists in both anime also end up having to face a dilemma in which they have to choose between duty and love. Finally, both anime serve as preludes to series that end up being much more lighthearted in tone than what you saw in said preludes. 
reportRecommended by Uriel1988
Both feature an extensively researched historical setting (though they are set in different historical periods) and capture the mood of some of the more contemplative, subtle and philosophical chanbara films. Both also feature intense, thrilling swordplay with a touch of gritty (and oftentimes grisly) realism, and dark, violent storylines that deconstruct in some ways the romanticism surrounding historical Japan in the time of the samurai. Shigurui goes much further in this regard, however; the themes of redemption and love present in Kenshin are nowhere to be found here, as Shigurui instead adopts an exceptionally bleak and cynical tone as it lends a more distinct "horror"  read more 
reportRecommended by Ni_Go_Zero_Ichi

Opening Theme

"In Dreams" by Taku Iwasaki

Ending Theme

"Quiet Life" by Taku Iwasaki

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