[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/senkou-no-night-raid_4413.jpg]]

The second anime series from Anime no Chikara (see ''Anime/SoRaNoWoto''), ''Senkou no Night Raid'' (English title ''Night Raid 1931'') is a 2010 anime set in UsefulNotes/{{China}} in 1931. It tells the story of a covert unit of the Imperial Japanese Army, the Sakurai Kikan, who use their various super-powers to protect Japanese interests. Intrigue abounds, both political and personal, since it seems everyone has their own reasons for being there. The team consists of Sonogi Yukina and her manservant Kagiya Natsume, who are looking for Yukina's brother who disappeared after seemingly defecting from the Imperial Army; stern MilitaryBrat Iha Kazura, and laid back hero Miyoshi Aoi.

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!Senko no Night Raid provides examples of:

* AloofBigBrother: Isao
* AnimeChineseGirl: Fuu Lan.
* ArtifactTitle: The English title ''Night Raid 1931'' becomes this after episode 7 as the second half of the show takes place in 1932. The final scene of the last episode is in 1934, and the ''Panther in the Snow'' epilogue OVA is in 1936.
* ArtisticLicenseNuclearPhysics: It took the world's largest industrial economy three years, billions of dollars and the efforts of over 100,000 people to create the first atomic bomb. Apparently they could have shortcut the process by hiring the one guy capable of doing it on his own.
* AttemptedRape: In the prologue episode, Yukina almost got raped by a drunk movie producer [[spoiler:who is also one of the ringleaders of a human trafficking group]]
* {{Backstory}}: all main characters have one, revealed through flashbacks.
* BadassInANiceSuit: Kazura
* BadassLongcoat: Kazura, most especially in the epilogue
* BattleButler: Natsume to Yukina
* BeautyMark: Yukina has ''two'', one under each eye.
* BewareTheHonestOnes: Isao.
* BigDamnHeroes: Aoi [[spoiler: in the epilogue episode where he saved Kazura from the Kempentatai]]
* BittersweetEnding: The series. [[spoiler:So the gang manages to avert the imminent danger of first Isao then Sakurai using the A-bomb, but Natsume dies, Aoi disappears, Manchukuo is established and history goes on... and of course we all know what happened at the end of the war.]]
** The OVA epilogue ''Panther in the Snow'' as well, bordering on DownerEnding. [[spoiler:Turns out Aoi is alive and is happily married to the love of his life... but she's lost all memories of their past together. Natsume's relatives are suffering from poverty, Yukina is lonely and Kazura's life is empty and aimless... until he ends up joining a rebellion of junior officers that eventually gets crushed. We never learn if he survived or not. Considering how this rebellion [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/February_26_Incident ended in real life,]] probably not.]]
* BlessedWithSuck: [[spoiler:Shizune. Having powers to see the future caused her to abandon her normal life and leave Aoi heartbroken. Said powers also drove her predecessor Towa (Isao's fiancee) to suicide after she foresaw what would happen 14 years later.]]
* BloodFromTheMouth: [[spoiler: Natsume, after he got shot in the last episode]]
* BloodKnight: Kuze
* BoundAndGagged: Yukina found like this when the DragonLady tries to dump her off the ship in a box.
* BreakingTheFourthWall: In the picture drama Natsume and Yukina lampshade how easily identifiable they are (Natsume with his height and peculiar hair, and Yukina with her beauty marks), and Yukina wonders what good they are as spies.
* BreatherEpisode: Episode 4 consists mostly of Aoi and [[TheStoic Kazura]] taking pictures of food and chasing a cat.
* CityOfSpies: Shanghai, which is TruthInTelevision. Our protagonists are Japanese spies, and throughout the course of the story, come across Russian, British, & American spies, as well as Chinese spies from the Nationalist Party and Communist Party.
* CodeName: The names of the main characters are all pseudonyms. Their real names are mentioned every now and then: Ono Souichirou (Aoi), Kishida Takuma (Kazura), Takachiho Setsuko (Yukina), & Tanaka Kichizou (Natsume). Yukina's closing narration reveals that she was never sure if she even knew Kazura's real name, since it never appeared on the list of February 26 conspirators.
* [[DesignStudentsOrgasm Design Student's Orgasm]]: The opening, which includes (among other things) the names of the cast and crew being decrypted (in Roman Letters)from a numeric substitution cipher over a background of Hiragana typewriter keys.
* DoingItForTheArt: Fictional example. A master violinist has been convinced to do spy work and forward information by encoding it in his music. Once the broadcast of his performance has been cut, he keeps playing anyway, for the music's sake.
* TheDragon: Kuze to Isao. [[spoiler:Isao to Sakurai.]]
* DramaticIrony: Used to great effect. Pretty much everyone's ideals get trampled on by history.
** The point gets hammered home when Kazura, in a fit of optimism, tells Aoi that the vision of the future seen by [[spoiler:Shizune]] is perhaps just one of many possibilities, and only time will tell if it comes true or not. [[spoiler:It ''will'' come true.]]
* DreadfulMusician: Aoi really sucks at playing the violin, but that doesn't stop him from playing it. He probably doesn't realize how awful he is.
* DressingAsTheEnemy: How Aoi and Kazura infiltrated the warlord's base in episode 1.
* ElegantClassicalMusician: Aoi and Shizune except Aoi [[DreadfulMusician sucks in playing the violin]]. Turns out that Yukina is pretty good for an amateur - noticeably better than Aoi.
* FaceHeelTurn: [[spoiler: Kazura got easily persuaded by Isao to join his side. But he had a HeelRealization when Natsume dies.]]
* FailedDramaticExit: [[spoiler: Shizune]] appears in front of a group of soldiers to give them a gravely serious warning about the future during a blackout. When the lights went back on, they all assume that [[spoiler: she]] magically disappeared; only to watch [[spoiler: her]] have trouble opening the door.
* FakingTheDead: [[spoiler: Shizune]]
* FanService: Episode 8's [[FuroScene Sentou Scene]]. *nosebleed*
** Yukina is almost always depicted wearing sexy qipaos in official art. She ''never'' wears one in the series itself.
* FauxFluency: Every foreign language that appears, especially on part of the main characters. (Natsume's Chinese is pretty good, though.) Averted in the case of most native non-Japanese speakers (except for Fuu Lan), most of whom got to be voiced by native speakers of their language, even Chinese walla.
** At least they put some effort in it: the credits show that they had Chinese and English/German speech coaches.
* TheFellowshipHasEnded: [[spoiler:After Natsume's death and Sakurai Kikan dissolved, the remaining members (sans Aoi who is recovering from his injuries at the end of the last episode) broke up. When Yukina met Kazura again in 1936 and tries to reconnect with him, Kazura brushes it off and reminds her that they need to move on. They met again near the end with Aoi, who saved Kazura's life from the Kempentai. But Kazura has to break up from them again to join the rebellion]].
* FlashBack: Used to reveal the characters' back stories and motivations.
* FoodPorn: Episode 4, in which Aoi and Kazura spend a lot of time photographing delicious-looking Chinese food.
* ForegoneConclusion: Once it becomes clear that the series is not going to diverge into an AlternateUniverse history.
* ForScience: Ichinose.
* FourPhilosophyEnsemble: Aoi (Cynic), Yukina (Realist), Kazura (Optimist), Natsume (Apathetic)
* FourTemperamentEnsemble: Aoi(Sanguine), Yukina (Choleric), Kazura (Melancholic), Natsume (Phlegmatic)
* FriendlySniper: Natsume
* GovernmentAgencyOfFiction: Sakurai Kikan
* GratuitousForeignLanguage: There's Chinese, [[GratuitousRussian Russian]], [[GratuitousGerman German]], and [[GratuitousEnglish English]]. Used for realism purposes and to emphasize the cosmopolitan setting, but tends to be rather poorly performed on the main characters' part.
** On the other hand, they had real foreigners (often native speakers) voicing most European characters, and also had native Chinese speakers voice native Chinese characters (except for Fuu Lan). Though why they are speaking Mandarin rather than Shanghainese is still a mystery.
** One should note that in context they're often doing a good job, as the characters are speaking foreign languages and it's natural that they have thick accents (although as spies, the main characters are supposed to be good at Chinese enough to blend in seamlessly). The only egregious example is Fuu Lan who is supposed to be a native but plays this trope straight. Apparently it's easier to have a Japanese VA fake Chinese accented Japanese than train Chinese VA's to do Japanese lines and have the accent come naturally.
** The [=DVD=]s and {{Blu Ray}}s feature a "dubbed" version of the show as an extra, where all scenes where originally foreign languages were used are dubbed over in Japanese.
* TheHandler: Sakurai Shinichirou.
* HeIsNotMyBoyfriend: Fuu Lan thought that Yukina and Aoi were couple. But Yukina and Natsume explicitly state that they're not.
* HeroicSacrifice: [[spoiler: Isao. See TakingTheBullet.]]
* HeyItsThatVoice:
** Aoi is Creator/HiroyukiYoshino and Creator/GregAyres.
** Kazura is Creator/DaisukeNamikawa.
** Isao is Creator/HiroakiHirata.
** Shizune is Creator/AyakoKawasumi.
** Fuu Lan is Creator/SakiFujita.
* HiddenDepths: The picture drama shows that Kazura has a sweet tooth.
* HistoricalDomainCharacter: By episode 7 and 8, important figures such the perpetrators of the Mukden Incident (Kanji Ishiwara and Seishirou Itagaki),Yoshitsugu Tatekawa (who failed to stop the invasion of Manchuria), Emperor Puyi and British diplomat Victor Bulwer-Lytton. Isao and [[spoiler: Shizune]] are the only characters who get to interact some of them.
* IJustWantToBeNormal: Kazura [[spoiler: and Shizune.]] For Kazura, he resents using his powers because they are the reason why he didn't get a chance to join the Imperial Army after his graduation. [[spoiler: For Shizune, her powers and role forced her to fake her death and leave Aoi. She gets reunited with him in the epilogue, but the price is the loss of nearly all of her memories.]]
* TheInfiltration: more than once.
* ImperialJapan: the team works for the Imperial Government. [[spoiler: or so they think.]]
* KindheartedCatLover: Natsume, apparently.
* LaserGuidedAmnesia: The power of Ichishi, Sakurai's attendant.
* TheManBehindTheMan: [[spoiler:Sakurai Shinichirou, to Takachiho Isao]].
* MindScrew: The OVA episode ''Devil of the Opium Den'', with a good dose of NightmareFuel.
* MisplacedAccent: Historical British diplomat Victor Bulwer-Lytton is in one episode, speaking with a distinctly North American accent. In later releases, he has been re-dubbed with a British accent.
* MissionControl: Yukina uses her powers to serve this role for the rest of the group.
* MundaneUtility: their cover as photgraphers.
* MyMasterRightOrWrong: Kuze to Isao.
* NiceHat: Yukina nearly always has a nice hat. Her favorite cloche is virtually her trademark. (It also serves as a convenient shorthand for the early thirties setting.) It's telling that she never wears it in the epilogue.
* NuclearWeaponsTaboo: Subverted. The name of the weapon is never mentioned (mostly because most characters don't know exactly what it is, except for being a "new type of bomb"), but it is made clear in the context that they are talking about the A-bomb.
* {{Ojou}}: Yukina
* OhCrap: Aoi and Kazura's reaction in episode 4 when they found out that a cat stole the bag of films.
* OneManArmy: Kazura, when he's not using his powers. Look at the prologue episode where he single-handedly defeated all the mooks including the DragonLady. But again, he did had some help from Aoi's powers.
* OpiumDen: Devil of the Opium Den. ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin
* PhotoMontage: The ending credits is composed of displaying four pictures framed on walls one by one in slow motion; the first is a shot of a railway track[[note]]presumably the South Manchuria Railway[[/note]], the second is Kazura's graduation photograph from the military school, the third is a group photograph of Yukina, Isao, Towa (Isao's fiancee) and Natsume and the fourth is a photograph of Aoi and Shizune in wedding attire.
* PistolWhipping: Kazura does this in cool way on Kuse in episode 3.
* PluckyComicRelief: Fuu Lan. The only time that she did something serious is in episode 5 where she witnesses Kazura, being held by the Kuomintang, and warns Aoi about it.
* PsychicPowers
** MindOverMatter - Aoi's power, though his usage has some kind of time limitation.
** {{Telepathy}} - Yukina's power. She reads minds and coordinates the team by projecting her thoughts to them and moving bits of information from head to head. She also seems to have some small measure of psychometric abilities.
*** As it turns out, the power runs in the family: Isao has something similar as well.
** TeleportersAndTransporters - Kazura's power. Kuze also has it.
** Natsume has XRayVision which works best at full moon and is weak at new moon.
** [[spoiler:Shizune]] is a {{Seer}}.
* PsychicNosebleed: Happens to [[spoiler:Yukina, when she's materializing an illusion of a nuclear bombing to the people in Xinjing]].
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: Chief Shin'ichirou. [[spoiler:Or so it seems.]]
* RecapEpisode: In place of episode 7 which depicts the Mukden Incident and as such wasn't allowed to air on TV. [[spoiler: Though the end of the recap episode show parts of the episode 7 where they revealed the perpetrators of the said incident.]] (Episode 7 was streamed online instead.)
* RedOniBlueOni: The dichotomy between Aoi (red) and Kazura (blue).
* UsefulNotes/SecondSinoJapaneseWar: Notably for a piece of Japanese entertainment, the show is far from historical revisionism.
* SeriousBusiness: Part of what makes the BreatherEpisode funny is that Aoi and Kazura act as if they are on a serious spying mission despite the mundane circumstances of the episode.
* SceneryPorn
* UsefulNotes/{{Shanghai}}: The first part of the series takes place here.
* SharpDressedMan: Kazura, when he's not in disguise. Isao also look good in a suit. Aoi is an aversion, he almost always appears with a loose tie, open collar, and rolled sleeves.
* ShownTheirWork: The staff did some fine research on the historical events of the period, especially the Mukden Incident and the [[http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/February_26_Incident February 26 incident]] while ignoring the revisionist viewpoints favored by Japanese right-wing extremists. However, there are still some minor mistakes, such as Kazura claiming to have read ''Literature/TheLittlePrince'' (published in 1943) when he was a young boy.
* TheSmurfettePrinciple; Yukina is the sole female in Sakurai Kikan while [[spoiler:Shizune]] is the sole female member of Isao's faction.
* SpyFiction
* StarCrossedLovers: [[spoiler: Aoi and Shizune]].
* StealthHiBye: a big part of Shizune's schtick as the Oracle, at least until a balky doorlatch turns it into a FailedDramaticExit
* {{Tearjerker}}: Yukina's backstory.
* TakingTheBullet: [[spoiler: Isao takes one in the final episode to protect Yukina from Sakurai. Sakurai even claims that he deliberately aimed at Yukina assuming Isao would take the bullet for his little sister.]]
* ThemeNaming: The Sakurai Kikan members are named after various plants. Aoi: hollyhock, Kazura: kudzu, Yukina: a kind of vegetable, Natsume: jujube, ''Sakura''i: cherry blossom.
* ThisIsAWorkOfFiction: The TV version included a disclaimer at the end of each episode.
* TheThirties: The series takes place in 1931 to 1932 while the epilogue is set in 1936.
* TrademarkFavoriteFood: The guys of the Sakurai Kikan like baozi.
* ThrowAwayGuns: In episode 6, Kazura throws his gun at Kuse after it ran out of ammo and to test if Kuse has a limit on his teleporting powers.
* TomatoSurprise: [[spoiler:Ichishi's]] true identity.
* TheUnreveal: By the end of the picture drama, we never know what's under the microfilm that Natsume and Yukina had been passing on to Aoi and Kazura. Only Yukina seem to know.
* TheVoiceless: Ichishi utters exactly three lines in the entire show.
* WaistcoatOfStyle: Kazura wears one under his jacket usually. But you get to see it in the picture drama.
* WeCanRuleTogether: Isao recruits Aoi and Kazura to join his side. [[spoiler: Aoi refuses the offer but Kazura, on the other hand...]]
* WeaksauceWeakness: Each character with psychic powers has their own limitation. Isao, Ichishi and [[spoiler:Shizune]] are the only ones whose limitations are not identified:
** Aoi can use his power for only a certain matter of time.
** Kazura can only teleport if he can see the point of destination.
** Yukina's ability can be enhanced if she smell flowers. The OVA episode ''Devil of the Opium Den'' seem to suggest that the opium affected her ability.
** Natsume's power can work best on a full moon and not on a new moon.
** Kuse can also teleport but only on a smal radius.
* WellIntentionedExtremist: [[spoiler: Takachiho Isao]].
* WithCatlikeTread: Involving an actual cat, at that. Aoi and Kazura are preparing to infiltrate a gang hideout when Aoi steps on the tail of a nearby cat, who causes a ruckus by screeching and running down the alley (knocking over several things in its way) right into the hideout.
* WouldHitAGirl: In the prologue episode, Kazura throws off the DragonLady into the box.
* XMeetsY: It's ''Anime/DarkerThanBlack'' meets ''LightNovel/{{Baccano}}''.
** Or ''Anime/GhostInTheShellStandAloneComplex'' meets ''LightNovel/{{Baccano}}''.
** Or perhaps ''LightNovel/{{Baccano}}'' meets ''VideoGame/ShadowHearts''.[[note]]Without the monsters of course[[/note]]
* YouShallNotPass: Kuse in episode 6.
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