Characters / Shigurui

Below are the characters of Shigurui. Note that names are in Japanese order (Family name first, then given name):

Fujiki Gennosuke

The Stoic pupil of the Kogan dojo. In the present time in his duel with Seigen he has only one arm but it is noted that his back muscles could theoretically make up for lost strength. Fujiki is very loyal to Kogan , and is said to be most likely to succeed as the school's master.

  • Anti-Hero: Is the main protagonist of the story. Does some nasty deeds without flinching throughout it.
  • Animal Motifs: A tiger and on occasions, a dragon.
  • Bait the Dog: At the start, he looks noble and admirable, then he crosses the Moral Event Horizon.
  • Fatal Flaw: Refuses to see any other view that the way of Bushido and puts honoring the monstrous Kogan above all else. Due to this dogmatic outlook, he finds himself losing the only man who understood him, the woman he loved and finally, any semblance of humanity he ever felt.
  • Tiger Versus Dragon: Despite being associated with dragons, he's the Tiger to Irako's Dragon.
  • Handicapped Badass: Losing his left arm didn't slow him down a bit.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: As Kogan had saved his life when he was a little boy.

Irako Seigen

An ambitious man who seeks to raise his status. In the present time, he is blind and has a deep cut in one of his feet. Years before, he joined the Kogan-Ryuu school afterwards and was eventually picked to become the successor over Gennosuke Fujiki, but he and Kogan had a falling out which resulted in his present-day blindness.

  • Break the Haughty: Blinding him was meant as this by Kogan. He doesn't stay broken for long.
  • Byronic Hero: Intelligent, charismatic and capable man, who doesn't listen to anyone but himself. He is also idolized by the other blind men in the series, showing that even they can achieve something in life. At the same time, he is lecherous and arrogant, both which get him blinded in the first place.
  • Determinator: Lost your eyesight? No problem. Just train until you don't need them anymore and then go after the martial arts school that maimed you.
  • Tiger Versus Dragon: The Dragon to Fujiki's Tiger.
  • Even the Guys Want Him: Original Irako Seigen most certainly did.
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Subverted and then double subverted. He kills his mother to climb the social ladder, but it's the only death he deeply regrets. He also took care of her long after she could no longer recognize him due to insanity.
  • Eye Scream: As punishment for sleeping with Iku, Kogan slashed Seigen's eyes with his katana, rendering him blind.
  • Friend to All Children: Yes, really. Whenever he has to deal with children, he goes out of his way to be nice to them. Notable with the starving street urchin. No one else would touch the kid, but he washed her, gave her food and even a place to stay.
  • Handicapped Badass: In addition to being blind, he also walks with a limp due to a large gash on his right foot.
  • Jerkass: Before his blindness, he was an unrepentant Casanova.
  • Noble Demon: Although he's a violent and even cruel man, Seigen still has his own moral code — even showing kindness to a starving child at one point.
  • Pet the Dog: Usually followed with him kicking it.
  • Worthy Opponent: One scene does show that Irako actually respects Fujiki, but the feeling is not mutual. It became mutual only at the very end of the series.
  • Villain Protagonist: The story focuses on him as much as Gennosuke and both are violent men who will kill anyone who questions their honor.

Ushimata Gonzaemon

A master of the Kogan-Ryuu school and Gennosuke's senior.

  • Animal Motifs: the Taurus, largely owing to his burly stature, enormous physical strength and later on signifying his elite position within the house of Iwamoto as an accomplished practitioner and instructor of Kogan-ryuu.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: Though portrayed as naturally endowed rather than gifted though training, Gonza's ridiculous strength is only enhanced by his mastery of Kogan's techniques.
  • Determinator: Even massive brain damage won't stop him from coming after your ass.
  • Glasgow Grin: Inflicted by Kogan.
  • Groin Attack: Tore off his own testicles at the time he killed the woman he loved, as a sign of devotion to Kogan and his sword above all else.

Iwamoto Kogan

The Grandmaster of the Kogan-Ryuu school. Mentally unbalanced most of the time, he regains his sanity most often in the period between fall and winter. Cares nothing for his daughter, Mie.

  • Animal Motifs: The Tiger, his students are referred to as cubs and in many scenes, he appears as a tiger to represent his ferocity.
  • Axe-Crazy: Has gone off his rocker in his advanced age.
  • Badass Grandpa: Perhaps the most badass character in the series.
  • Comforting the Widow: Has a hand in the deaths of Iku's fiancés.
  • Evil Mentor: Kogan is a cruel Blood Knight and encourages his students to kill anyone who questions his dojo and that the only thing that matters is their martial prowess.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: He despises his daughter for having been born a girl and sees her only as a Baby Factory to produce a grandson who will inherit his skills as a samurai.

Iwamoto Mie

The daughter of Kogan Iwamoto.

  • Avenging the Villain: Swears vengeance on Irako after her father is killed.
  • Driven to Suicide: Conflicted from initially loving Seigen for refusing to rape her when Kogan ordered it to hating him for killing Kogan, to not knowing how to interpret his kindness when he helps heal Gennosuke, Mie takes her own life after Gennosuke kills Seigen.

Lady Iku

The concubine of Kogan. When she was younger, she was consistently taunted with a children's song and the masses fled at her approach. This public scorn only increased her dependence on her husband.

  • Anti-Villain: Perhaps the most symphatetic character in the series.
  • Breast Attack: Kogan slices off her nipple when he finds out she's been cheating on him.
  • Christmas Cake: Before Kogan takes her in, she has outlived two fiancés, and no one dares to woo her.
  • Morality Pet: To Irako.
  • Neutral Female: Averted. She isn't a fighter, but is anything but useless.
  • Unholy Matrimony: With Seigen to whom she is completely devoted to. It's unclear how much Seigen cares about her, although he does treat her much better (ie. like an actual human being) unlike her previous lover Kogan.

Tokugawa Tadanaga

Lord of the Sunpu castle and the shogun's younger brother. He is quite mad.

  • Aristocrats Are Evil: Tadanaga abuses his position as the shogun's brother to utterly terrorize the population of his domain, raping and killing people as he pleases.
  • The Caligula: Doubles up as a Royal Brat, as he is the Shogun's brother.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Fitting of a man who lives for nothing but violence, Tadanaga bares the same creepy smile when committing seppuku as he does watching anyone else die.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Even an off comment reminding him that he's not shogun can set him off. When he realizes his brother is becoming aware of his planned coup, he reacts by throwing servants out of a tower in his castle and butchers a samurai who was bowing to him.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: Tadanaga becomes aroused by violence: he keeps a deformed warrior to watch as he rapes and cannibalizes women and strangles his sex partners to death with a look of bliss on his face.
  • Royally Screwed Up: Spoilt rotten by his mother, leading him to think that he should have become Shogun instead of his brother Iemitsu.
  • Stupid Evil: Couldn't see that his acts would draw the attention of Edo (and his brother). As a result, he gets put down like a mad dog.