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Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Swordsman Romantic Story (るろうに剣心 -明治剣客浪漫譚-), also known as Rurouni Kenshin and Samurai X, is an anime based on the manga series written and illustrated by Nobuhiro Watsuki. Studio Gallop, Studio Deen and SPE Visual Works adapted the manga into an anime series which aired in Japan on Fuji Television from January 10, 1996 to September 8, 1998.

Synopsis

A man slayer, Kenshin Himura, who played a major role in defeating Tokugawa Shogunate of feudal Japan carries his reverse blade sword (with a promise not to slay anymore). He embarks on a quest to repent for his sins by helping the innocent. He lodges in Kamia Kashin dojo where he becomes an acquaintance of Kaorou, the assistant instructor of the dojo. After being saved by Kenshin from mafia, a stubborn young boy, Yahiko Myojin joins the dojo as a student. Sanousuke, a victim of war becomes an acquaintance of Kenshin after losing to him in a duel. Together with his new friends, Kenshin carries out his ideal of helping the innocent. A series of events unfold that questions his ideal of living for the innocent and not slaying men. Kenshin faces every opponent with his reverse blade to uphold justice.


Dubbing History

Rurouni Kenshin was originally dubbed by Sony Pictures Television International in 1999, who tried and failed to market the series in the United States under the title Samurai X via an existing company. Sony distributes this version to other English-speaking countries outside of the United States, where it airs on Animax. Little is known about the dub other than that it was done in Los Angeles.[1] ADV Films would later dub the Movie and OVA's under the Samurai X title using their Austin, Texas based Monster Island Dubbing Studios and voice cast instead.

The TV Series would later be licensed by Media Blasters, who released the series, splitting it up into "seasons", and releasing them on DVD. Media Blasters would do their own dub of the series, provided by Bang Zoom! Entertainment utilizing much of the same voice actors from Sony's dub, but with extensive recasting. In producing their dub of the series, Media Blasters considered following the Japanese version, and giving Kenshin a female voice actress, with Mona Marshall considered a finalist to voice him. Richard Cansino, who previously voiced Kenshin in Sony's dub, was eventually chosen to reprise the role for Media Blasters' dub. Marshall was also selected to voice the younger Kenshin during flashback scenes.

Clark Cheng, Media Blasters dub script writer, said that localizing Kenshin's unusual speech was a difficult process. His use of de gozaru and oro were not only character trademarks that indicated his state of mind, but important elements to the story. However, neither is directly translatable into English, and in the end the company chose to replace de gozaru with "that I did," "that I am," or "that I do." Kenshin's signature oro was replaced with "huah" to simulate a "funny sound" that had no real meaning.[2]

The Media Blasters dub aired in the US on Cartoon Network as a part of their Toonami Block on March 17, 2003, but after episode 48 aired on July 4, 2003 the series moved to Cartoon Network's Saturday Video Entertainment System block until the completion of the second season (episode 62), leaving the third season unaired in North America. The series returned to Toonami for a second run beginning on October 23, 2004 and ending on March 12, 2005. Some of the show's depictions of obscene language, intense violence, and tobacco and drug usage were subject to heavy editing on Toonami. Episodes 63-95 did not air, but were included in the DVD release. As of May 2017, all three seasons with both the original Japanese audio and the Media Blasters dub are available to stream on Netflix.

Cast

Image Character Seiyū Samurai X Dub Media Blasters Dub
Protagonists
Kenshin Himura Kenshin Himura Mayo Suzukase Richard Cansino
Kaorucloseup Kaoru Kamiya Miki Fujitani Rebecca Forstadt Dorothy Elias-Fahn
Sanosuke Sagara Sanosuke Sagara Yūji Ueda Derek Stephen Prince Lex Lang
Yahiko 01 Yahiko Myōjin Miina Tominaga Brianne Siddall Wendee Lee
Juppongatana
Shishio06 Makoto Shishio Masanori Ikeda Stephen Apostolina Steve Blum
Yumikoma Yumi Komagata Kanako Irie Ellyn Stern Wendee Lee
Hojis Hōji Sadojima Hiroshi Takahashi Richard Epcar Dave Mallow
Soujiro Sōjiro Seta Noriko Hidaka Matthew Kermit Miller
(ep. 31)
Tara Sands
Mona Marshall Lynn Fischer (eps. 50-51)
Melissa Fahn (eps. 54-61)
Anji Anji Yukuyama Yasuyoshi Hara Bob Papenbrook Michael McConnohie
Kamatari Kamatari Honjo Junko Takeuchi Joan-Carol O'Connell Melodee Spevack
2623601 1334885131923.21res 224 168 Usui Uonuma Sho Ryuzanji Tom Wyner Jamieson Price
Iwanbou Iwanbō Norito Yashima Lex Lang
Chou Chō Sawagejō Shinichi Fukumoto Kirk Thornton Derek Stephen Prince
Henya Kariwa Henya Kariwa Eiji Takemoto Michael Sorich Dan Lorge
Saizuchi Saizuchi Ikuo Nishikawa Paul St. Peter
Oniwabanshu
Aoshi Aoshi Shinomori Yoshito Yasuhara Michael Sorich Terrence Stone
Hannyaprofile2 zpsa01c84bd Hannya Akio Nojima Richard Epcar Tom Wyner
Beshimi1 Beshimi Taiki Matsuno Stephen Apostolina Derek Stephen Prince
Hyottokoface Hyottoko Shōzō Iizuka Bob Papenbrook
35. Shikijo Shikijo Kazuhiro Nakata Michael Sorich Dean Wein
Okina Okina / Kashiwazaki Nenji Kōichi Kitamura Mike Reynolds Michael McConnohie
Misao kunai2 Misao Makimachi Tomo Sakurai Melodee Spevack Philece Sampler
Ochika Ōmime / Ochika Shizuka Okohira Bridget Hoffman
Mona Marshall
(ep. 89)
Omasu Masukame / Omasu Yuki Nakao Tara Sands
Dina Sherman (ep. 89)
Doctors
Megumi008 Megumi Takani Mika Doi Mari Devon
Rsz gensai Oguni Gensai Yoku Shioya Michael Sorich Steve Kramer
Police
Saito-Hajime-anime Hajime Saitō Hirotaka Suzuoki Daniel Woren Kirk Thornton
Kawaji Kawaji Toshiyoshi Katsuya Shiga Michael Sorich Joe Ochman
(eps. 30-31)
Doug Stone
(eps. 76-94)
PoliceChief Chief Muraki (Uramura) Sukekiyo Kameyama Steve Kramer Bob Papenbrook
Ishin Shishi
ArimotoYamagata General Aritomo Yamagata Seiji Mizutani
(eps. 3-64)
Tom Wyner
(eps. 3-16)
Simon Prescott
(eps. 3-16)
Holly Kaneko
(eps. 90-93)
Michael Forest
(eps. 64-93)
Crispin Freeman
(eps. 64-93)
2528 Toshimichi Ōkubo Yoshisada Sakiguchi Michael Forest Doug Stone
Kamiya Dojo
Ayamex Ayame Kaori Yuasa Wendee Lee Dina Sherman
Suzume Suzume Noriko Namiki Julie Maddalena Mona Marshall
Yutaro tsukayama 312 Yutaro Tsukayama Mayumi Tanaka Mona Marshall Michael Lindsay
(eps. 19-21)
Dave Wittenberg
(eps. 83-88)
Shimabara
ShogoA Shōgo Amakusa Junichi Inoue Richard Epcar Crispin Freeman
Sayo Sayo Migdalia Hiroko Kasahara Ellyn Stern Lia Sargent
Other Characters
SeijuroHiko Seijuro Hiko Shūichi Ikeda Lex Lang Richard Epcar
Tae3 Tae Sekihara Sumi Shimamoto Joan-Carol O'Connell Michelle Ruff
Tsubame Tsubame Sanjō Yuri Shiratori
Misanagi Misanagi Chisa Yokoyama Julie Ann Taylor
Schneider Schneider Junichi Takeoka Matthew Kermit Miller
DaigoroOkuma Daigoro Okuma Nobuyuki Hiyama Tony Oliver
Elster Consul Elster Ryūji Nakagi Michael McConnohie Tom Wyner
125997 Itsuko Katsu Junko Iwao Karen Strassman
53148 Tsunan Tsukioka Hiroshi Yanaka Daran Norris Kim Strauss
Kanryu takeda 305 Kanryu Takeda Nobuo Tobita Kirk Thornton John Snyder
Gohei Gohei Hiruma Tetsuo Komura Richard Epcar Beau Billingslea
63355 Raijūta Isurugi Ryūsuke Ōbayashi Richard Epcar
Arundoakamatsu Arundo Akamatsu Kazuhiro Nakata Tom Wyner
Jin-e Jinei Udō Akio Ōtsuka Steve Kramer Dave Mallow
Jinpu 353 Jinpu Takehito Koyasu Kirk Thornton Jamieson Price
Saeki-yunoshin Saeki Yunoshin Kazuhiro Ōguro Daniel Woren Tony Oliver
Rsz sozo Sōzō Sagara Hidehiro Kikuchi Stephen Apostolina Steve Staley

Additional Voices

Notes

  • For reasons unknown, in the Media Blasters dub; various voice changes occur between seasons ranging from minor to major.
    • Sojiro's voice changes twice; originally he is voiced by Tara Sands. After Tara returned to New York, Lynn Fischer replaced her as Sojiro for a couple episodes before being replaced by Melissa Fahn.
    • Yutaro was originally voiced by Michael Lindsay. When the character returned later, Dave Wittenberg took over his voice.
    • Aritomo Yamagata was originally voiced by Simon Prescott during his brief appearances in Season 1. However, in Season 3, he is voiced by the noticeably younger-sounding Crispin Freeman. This similarly happened in the Japanese version.
    • Kawaji is initially voiced by Joe Ochman during his brief appearance in Season 2, but in Season 3, he is voiced by Doug Stone (who ironically played Okubo opposite Kawaji in Season 2).
    • Hannya is voiced by Tom Wyner for the majority of the dub, however during Aoshi's flashback in Episode 42, he is voiced by Paul St. Peter. Later still when his ghost appeared before Misao during the Aoiya battle in Episode 52, he's voiced by Dan Lorge. Why is unknown as Wyner still provided various incidental roles during that season.
    • For the Flashback mentioned above, Dan Lorge provides Shikijo's one line instead of Dean Wein. Wein also was still voice acting roles during the season.
    • Lara Cody fills in for Melodee Spevack as Kamatari during a brief scene in Episode 54.
    • Melodee Spevack fills in for Bridget Hoffman as Ōmime in Episode 45. Mona Marshall later voices her during her brief appearance in Episode 89.
    • Dina Sherman later replaces Tara Sands as Omasu in Episode 89.
    • Jinpu's one line of dialogue in Episode 90 is provided by Michael McConnohie before being recast with Jamieson Price in the following episode. This line appears in the prologue of Episode 91 redubbed by Price.

Transmission

Date(s) Channel Country
2003-2005 Cartoon Network
(Toonami)
United States Flag United States

Video Releases

Distributor Year Format Contents Region Country
Media Blasters 2000-2002 DVD The Complete Series 1
NTSC
United States Flag United States
22 Volumes
2003-2004 The Complete Series
3 Volumes
2010 The Complete Series
22 Discs

See Also

References

External Links