As a child, everyone one of us picked up a stick and held it as a sword acting like a samurai because they looked cool to us, didn’t they?
Samurai were pre-modern Japan’s aristocrat warriors who rose to power in the 12th century and became the highest-ranking social caste of the Edo Period (1603-1867) and dominated the Japanese Government until the Meiji Restoration in 1868.
There are some insanely engaging stories about Samurai in anime. Let’s begin with the top 10 list of samurai anime.
Afro Samurai is an elegantly brutal samurai show.
Afro SamuraiAir Date: January 2007Status: FinishedNo. of Seasons: 1No. of Episodes: 5
As a young boy, Afro witnessed his father getting slaughtered by Justice, who took the number one headband to claim its godly power.
Years later, Afro has obtained the number two band, which has the only right to challenge number one. But being number two, anyone for the title can challenge him. Afro has to fight those enemies to claim his vengeance.
9Shigurui: Death Frenzy
Shigurui lets the action speak for itself.
Shigurui: Death FrenzyAir Date: July 2007Status: FinishedNo. of Seasons: 1No. of Episodes: 12
At the beginning of the Edo Era, Lord Tokugawa Tadanaga held a fighting tournament with real swords. One-armed Fujiki Gennosuke and blind Irako Seigen will fight each other in this match. They are the disciples’ Japan’s greatest swordsman, Iwamoto Kogan.
Both of them will face each other to prove themselves as the successor of Iwamoto’s school.
8Blade of the Immortal
Humans annihilate each other to gain supremacy, that’s what Blade of Immortals displays.
Blade of the ImmortalAir Date: July 2008Status: FinishedNo. of Seasons: 1No. of Episodes: 13
Manji is a swordsman cursed with immortality by a witch. After getting tired of all the death he has created, Manji decides to regain his mortality. He can do so by killing a hundred evil men for each of the hundred good men he has died.
On his journey, he meets a Rin who seeks vengeance against the sword school whose members slaughtered Rin’s family. Rin and Manji set out on their adventure, hoping to find some kind of peace.
Hyouge Mono portrays the aristocratic lifestyle of a Samurai.
Hyouge MonoAir Date: April 2011Status: FinishedNo. of Seasons: 1No. of Episodes: 39
In Japan’s Sengoku Jidai lives Furuta Sasuke, a vassal of the great warlord Oda Nobunaga. He had an obsession with tea ceremony and material desires in pursuit of a fortuitous life.
Having learned from Oda and the legendary tea master Sen no Soukei, Furuta walks the way of the Hyouge Mono.
Drifter displays a group of legendary samurai fighting in a fantasy world.
DriftersAir Date: October 2016Status: FinishedNo. of Seasons: 1No. of Episodes: 12
After getting critically wounded in the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600, Toyohisa Shimazu finds himself in a hallway with hundreds of doors where he meets Murasaki.
Soon Toyohisa is pulled into from the nearest doors and landed in a strange land with the warriors of different eras who were thought to be dead; we’re alive.
After befriending Nobunaga Oda and Ancient archer Yoichi Suketaka Nasu, he learns they were summoned as the “Drifters.” They are to fight against the Drifter killers “Ends” to reclaim the land for themselves.
5House of Five Leaves
House of Five Leaves depicts the outlook of a samurai.
House of Five LeavesAir Date: April 2010Status: FinishedNo. of Seasons: 1No. of Episodes: 12
Akitsu Masanosuke is a masterless samurai who, despite his skilled swordsmanship and loyalty, gets expelled by the lords due to his naive and diffident nature.
To feed himself, he becomes a bodyguard for Yaichi, the charismatic leader of the “Five Leaves” gang.
Masa, after getting disturbed by the sinister activities of the gang, soon realizes that Yaichi’s motivation is not what they seem and finds himself fascinated by these mysterious outlaws.
Dororo is surprisingly emotional instead of the bloodsheds.
DororoAir Date: January 2019Status: FinishedNo. of Seasons: 1No. of Episodes: 24
To gain power, greedy samurai Lord Daigo Kagemitsu makes a pact with 12 demons, for which he pays the price with his first newborn son’s organs and limbs.
The child still alive was disposed of in a river where he was saved by a medicine man who provides him with prosthetics and weapons to survive in this cruel era.
To get his body back to normal, Hyakkimaru must kill the demons with possession of those organs. After wandering for several years, one day, he meets with an orphan, Dororo, and befriends him. They set off on a journey in a demon-infested world.
Samurai Champloo is the coolest samurai show you’ll ever watch.
Samurai ChamplooAir Date: May 2004Status: FinishedNo. of Seasons: 1No. of Episodes: 26
While saving Fuu Kasumi from a group of Samurai, Mugen and Jin destroys an entire shop and ends up killing the local magistrate’s son accidentally.
Just when they were going to be executed for their crimes, Fuu saves them by hiring them as her bodyguard. Fuu wishing to find an individual samurai with the smell of sunflowers enlists both of them to do so.
They agreed to help, but it will be Fuu’s liability to stop Mugen and Jin from killing each other on this mission.
Gintama is the perfect blend of comedy and tragedy.
GintamaAir Date: April 2006Status: FinishedNo. of Seasons: 10No. of Episodes: 367
After the invasion of aliens on earth, a prohibition on swords has been established, resulting in a disregard for Samurai of Japan.
However, Gintoki Sakata still possesses the heart of a samurai, which one might not agree with after witnessing his love for sweets and work as a yorozuya.
He is accompanied by Shinpachi Shimura, Kagura, and their oversized pet dog, Sadaharu, on the journey of doing odd-jobs.
1Rurouni Kenshin (Samurai X)
Rurouni Kenshin depicts a classic tale of a samurai repenting for his sins.
Rurouni KenshinAir Date: December 1998Status: FinishedNo. of Seasons: 1No. of Episodes: 94
Hitokiri Battousai, a legendary assassin of the Bakumatsu era, mysteriously disappears at the peak of the Japanese Revolution. It has been ten years, but his name still strikes terror in the hearts of war veterans.
To repent for his sins, Battousai has abandoned his bloodstained lifestyle. He is now living as Kenshin Himura, a wandering swordsman wielding his sword for protecting the weak.
For helping Karou Kamiya to save her kendo dojo from a Battousai impostor, she allows Kenshin to stay in her dojo temporarily.
There are few series with elements of Samurai in them; they are Basilisk, Sengoku Basara: Samurai Kings, Mushibugyo, Hakuoki.