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Saraiya Goyou

Alternative Titles

English: House of Five Leaves
Synonyms: Sarai-ya Goyou
Japanese: さらい屋 五葉


Type: TV
Episodes: 12
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Apr 16, 2010 to Jul 2, 2010
Premiered: Spring 2010
Broadcast: Fridays at 01:15 (JST)
Licensors: NIS America, Inc.
Studios: Manglobe
Source: Manga
Duration: 23 min. per ep.
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or older


Score: 7.871 (scored by 19,161 users)
1 indicates a weighted score. Please note that 'Not yet aired' titles are excluded.
Ranked: #7742
2 based on the top anime page. Please note that 'Not yet aired' and 'R18+' titles are excluded.
Popularity: #1584
Members: 57,908
Favorites: 654


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Jul 1, 2010
Detective (All reviews)
What if there was an anime, an anime that was about samurai. This anime wasn't about "the strongest samurai" or "the path to glory" or even a "demon sword," but instead it was about meek looking samurai with slightly above average skills. He wasn't looking to fight the strongest fight, or defeat the overlord and free his people, but maybe, he was just looking to make his living and help his little sister back at home. That would be, if not anything, interesting. That's exactly what Sarai-ya Goyou (House of the Five Leaves) is about. This anime isn't for those who live to see explosions read more
Jun 23, 2010
Mimi_Taylor (All reviews)
Saraiya Goyou is about a gang called “Five Leaves” during the Edo period in Japan. There is very little action, the artwork is nontraditional, and the story moves at a snail’s pace. So why should anyone pay attention to this? Actually, I’d say that those points work to Saraiya Goyou’s advantage, resulting in a well-written, mature story.

Story & Characters

The members of Five Leaves make their money through undercover jobs such as kidnapping, but they are not the usual rough and tough gangsters. Most of them appear to be friendly, thoughtful people who spend their time lounging around in a relaxed environment, read more
Feb 23, 2015
ZephSilver (All reviews)
Every now and then a show is needed to unwind to. Something to break the monotony of the typical over-the-top anime shows with "in your face" color pallete and the overused tropes. We seek these melancholic shows to provide temporary release from the norm, a sort of meditative experience if you will. House of Five Leaves is that kind of show. A show that understands its audiences' desires and executes it with a delicate balance. This certainly isn't for anyone seeking an adrenaline rush or intense action flick but rather serves as an oasis for anime fans that want to just kick back and relax. read more
Feb 16, 2017
Fleure (All reviews)
The streets glow with a crimson hue.

Upon closer gaze, a pattern of five-pointed leaves stained with a fiery red flutter in synchronized elegance, encapsulating the essence of an enigmatic tale told in the 12-episode anime titled Saraiya Goyou or House of Five Leaves. Based on the manga by Natsume Ono, Saraiya Goyou tells a slow-burning narrative revolving around an unemployed samurai named Masa, who in simple desperation, finds himself hired by Yaichi – the leader of a small band of thieves who call themselves the Five Leaves.

The bulk of the series focuses on the dynamics between the members of the Five Leaves, specifically Masa read more
Nov 2, 2013
Jodyqt (All reviews)
Peace and serenity, independence of the mind, graceful beauty, resting, & death; the rich magnificence of a maple leaf as it falls at the closing of its years. Before we begin, I would like to say that no other symbolism can effectively associate itself with Saraiya Goyou moreso than that of a satin maple leaf.

At this very instance, the broad versatility of references that exists within this beautiful piece of nature constructs a focal point for everything that Saraiya Goyou is and stands for. To me, it simply opts to convey every aspect of the rich symbolic context of a maple leaf through its character read more
Jul 22, 2010
Lindle (All reviews)
Saraiya Goyou, or House of Five Leaves, is the latest work by cult studio Manglobe. Now, while it isn't generally a good idea for a critic to speak personally, it bears mention that this is the first time I have ever seen anything by Manglobe, so I can't really comment on how it compares to their previous works. However, the fact that Manglobe already have a cult following in spite of only having four previous works to their name (Samurai Champloo, Ergo Proxy, Michiko to Hatchin and Seiken no Blacksmith) says quite a lot about this studio. Now, I don't know if Saraiya Goyou is read more
Jul 4, 2010
Seabury (All reviews)
This is a most perplexing anime, one that waits until the end to tie everything together. It’s actually very boring at first, and what redeems it is that the show keeps throwing out little bits of exposition and development, keeping an interest going while moving at the pace of a turtle. I would expect most action-oriented and plot-oriented anime fans to be bored our of their skulls, and character-oriented anime fans to be frustrated at first.

If you notice the details, it is even more perplexing. It is an extremely high quality anime, the art is in this strangely solemn style, where the characters all read more
Jun 1, 2010
BienAgiter (All reviews)
Contrary to popular belief this anime is not calming...If anything it made me angry at how annoying and pathetic the protagonist is. In fact he is so pitiful that nothing ever progresses in the plot.

The one good thing about Saraiya-goyou is its unique art style. Saraiya-goyou is set during the Edo period in Japan and the art style is sort of a modern reflection of the art style from that period. Unfortunately I would never watch or recommend an anime solely for the artwork so if you are thinking of watching it disregard this paragraph and move on.

I understand some people are read more
Jun 22, 2010
bleeb (All reviews)
Story & Characters: 9
A rather timid and shy samurai, Masa, comes across a yakuza, Yaichi. For the first time he isn't ridiculed for the frightening gap between his personality and occupation and is offered a job. When Yaichi notices Masa really has skills he tries to pull him into the Yakuza.
This is a realistic story about how someone gets sucked into a yakuza group, and about becoming 'nakama'. While Masa struggles with his own demons he gets accepted by the 4 members of Sarai-ya Goyō.
Within these twelve episodes we get to know fragments of their past and how Sarai-ya Goyō came to be.

Art: read more
Jul 2, 2010
IceAndCream (All reviews)
After seeing the last episode, I've now added this anime to my top 5 favorites.

The first word I'd use to describe it is "quirky." The art style is quirky, the music is quirky, and so are the characters.

A shy, sensitive, and naive samurai (Masa) who can't keep a job is hired to be a bodyguard for the boss of a small gang called The Five Leaves. The boss (Yaichi) is an utter mystery to most of the other characters, especially Masa. At the heart of the story is Masa discovering who Yaichi really is. And the need each human has: the read more
Jun 28, 2011
Jolon (All reviews)
Saraiya Goyou is a very sedate work that received less attention than the noitaminA time slot generally receives, and was something of a critical failure for this reason. Some people were put off by Saraiya Goyou, and more ignored it entirely.

A year after it's airing, the show deserves another look.

Story: 9
Sairaya Goyou's story is understated and slow paced, with little of the action that might be expected from a period samurai drama. Much is expressed through silence, and scenes unfold lazily, interspersed with brief segments of tension. The primary focus is on the mysterious Yaichi and his criminal associates, and read more
Jul 31, 2015
AlexJetski (All reviews)
House of Five Leaves is an utterly mesmerizing Samurai drama that follows the dealings of a gang of thieves called Five Leaves in Edo Japan, who focus on kidnapping and ransom to make a profit. Despite the intriguing premise the show sadly went overlooked by most at the time of its release. This is likely due to the focus on dialogue and character interaction rather than swordplay and large-scale fights. It's a real shame too because the characters themselves are really something to behold.

Each member of the Five Leaves gang receives a small character arc that delves into their motivations and attitudes towards read more
Mar 19, 2012
steampunkvillain (All reviews)
Saraiya Goyou is a distinctive, mature work that takes a refreshingly honest look at the Edo period, romanticising it in the only sense it should be idealised; an aesthetic sense. We follow an oddly honourable band of kidnappers in Japan’s Feudal age. Yaichi, the leader of this group, the Saraiya Goyou, and the bashful ronin that becomes involved with them, Matsu, are the central characters. The pace of the series is intentionally slow, allowing it to be a completely character driven, subtle, perfectly crafted narrative. If you are looking an anime that is clash and slash, hard rock- look elsewhere; this is a skilful, read more
Oct 25, 2010
skankfish (All reviews)
First of all, some people seem dissapointed in this series due to its lack of action. Don't let the edo setting fool you, this is no samurai epic. It's not about fights and blood, it's more interesting than that.

Story 8/10.

Our hero is a bit of a pussy. He's a sumurai, but so unintimidating that he can barely hold his head up without running away. His hidden skill rarely surfaces, but somehow he still manages to impress a local bandit enough to be invited into his group. Forced to betray his morals due to poverty, he befriends the members and joins their kidnapping ranks.

So starts the read more
Aug 16, 2013
Baconzombie (All reviews)
When you think of Samurai, what images flash into your mind first? Courageous warriors clad in their traditional hakama? Fierce sword fights to the death? Or maybe a lifelong journey to achieve some form of enlightenment? Saraiya Goyou, or The House of Five Leaves (I’ll refer to the show as “Goyou” for the rest of the review), is none of these. In fact, it doesn’t come close to anything our culture has widely perceived about the behaviors of these swordsmen.

Story (8/10):

Akitsu “Masa” Masanosuke is a ronin, or a masterless samurai, who lives in Edo period of Japanese history (a time period that lasted from read more
Jul 5, 2010
Algirdyz (All reviews)
Now don't get me wrong by looking at the mark i gave this anime. On my scale, 7 is very high, way above average. And Saraiya Goyou really is just that. It is not a masterpiece, or even close to that, but it beats the majority of the anime we get to watch.

The story is the best part of this anime. It is not linear. Even though it is told in a chronological order with a few flashbacks, you can't discern the series of events till the very end. And even then, when you can remember all of the events, and put them together read more
Dec 4, 2012
Lima-Sama (All reviews)
The story is set in Edo period Japan, where a highly skilled but highly gullible and unreliable samurai is finding trouble securing a job as a bodyguard. The starving "ronin" soon catches the attention of the misterious and charismatic leader of a local criminal gang known as the "Five Leaves Gang" who hires him to serve as his bodyguard and soon, starts persuading him into officialy joining the gang. Though reluctant at first, the samurai ends up joining the gang, partly due to his critical financial situation but also due to his growing interest in the gang and its members; as time goes by read more
Jan 29, 2015
Eneko-chan (All reviews)
While indubitably a good one, this anime might not be just everyone's cup of tea. Speaking of cups of tea, Saraiya Goyou is very much like a good cup of tea on a winter's evening, when you're snuggled up in a chair with a warm blanket and a good book. It's a cup of green tea, gently warming your freezing palms, with delicate yet sweet taste and subtle fragrance.

While one may call it slow-paced, and there's not much action to be seen there, its beauty lies precisely in its slow, meditative storytelling. It's a genuine drama in its portrayal of people with unique circumstances, read more
Apr 6, 2019
patrickRos (All reviews)
This anime receives far less attention than it deserves. If you've never heard of Saraiya Goyou, definitely take a moment to see if it's up your alley.

The anime follows a strong, innocent, and timid samurai as he joins a enigmatic group in feudal Japan. The interactions between our uncertain protagonist and the group's charismatic leader resemble "Of Mice and Men." Overall, the story focuses on uncovering mystery, loss of innocence, and slow-paced atmosphere.

One strength of the anime is that---while it has few action scenes---each of these scenes are crisp and impactful. Characters are nuanced and develop into more complicated individuals over the course of the read more
Jan 3, 2011
Yakarin (All reviews)
"A dirty stray cat"

Story (10): This is one of the most sober animes I've seen. In a quietly daily basis, it presents you with a society filled with hardship, cruelty, injustice and yet, people struggling to survive between cynicism, indiference and a little bit of hope, as fragile as a candle light.

Art (10): The art is very particular and mesmerizing. This is one of my favorite aspects of the anime. It suits the entire feeling of the characters and story perfectly: lazy deep eyes, expresive innocent eyes, mouths that look like translucent sketches of expression, gorgeous dark landscapes... not mentioning the atenttion to detail the read more