The first season of the Japanese anime series Blue Eyed Samurai, now streaming on Netflix, centers around a compelling female protagonist pretending to be male to pursue a quest for vengeance. Mizu is a complex character set on retribution, but struggling with her own morals and identity as she inhabits the guise of a male samurai.
With its R-rated violence and mature themes, Blue Eyed Samurai is clearly not intended for all audiences. However, viewers who can handle intensely graphic anime will find the fight scenes adrenaline-fueled and visually stunning. Though the animation aesthetic is stylized, the blood and gore does not shy away from visceral, shocking brutality.
Beyond the frenetic action, what makes Blue Eyed Samurai truly engaging is Mizu’s character arc as she navigates the samurai world disguised as a man. Her choices raise complex questions about morality, justice, gender roles and even identity. Mizu struggles to balance her mission of vengeance with her own principles and compassion, leading to choices that are ethically ambiguous.
Some scenes in the series explore sexually charged themes as Mizu maintains her disguise around both male and female characters. This adds fascinating emotional layers to relationships and examines mature subjects like sexuality and consent.
Overall, Blue Eyed Samurai brings a fresh take to the samurai genre with a compelling female lead and thought-provoking themes. Fans of mature, graphic anime who appreciate complex characters will find this show an exciting new vision. While often shocking and brutal, it ultimately presents an impactful exploration of justice, revenge, deception and self-identity.