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Film / Thunderbolt Fantasy: The Sword of Life and Death

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"The naked blade reveals all conflicts."
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"I will absolutely kill you! ...Where ever you go, I will hunt you down!"

Thunderbolt Fantasy: The Sword of Life and Death (Thunderbolt Fantasy 生死一劍, Shōshi Ikken, Shēng Sǐ Yī Jiàn) is a 2017 Taiwanese Hand Puppet-based puppet feature film spinoff from the Thunderbolt Fantasy franchise produced by The TBF Project led by nitro+ screenwriter Gen Urobuchi, Good Smile Company, and Taiwan's top glove-puppeteering studio—Pili International Multimedia.

The film is split into two parts, the main portion is the adaption of the side-story novel, The Episode of Setsu Mu Syou written by Mitsunori Enami, while the second part is a newly scripted segment by Urobuchi himself titled, The Episode of Syou Fu Kan. The final selling point of the film is to sow the plot of TBF Season Two.

The Episode of Setsu Mu Syou takes place one year prior to the first season of Thunderbolt Fantasy. Professional assassin Setsu Mu Syou has been hired as a personal bodyguard to the notorious thief Lin Setsu A, the Enigmatic Gale. Setsu Mu Syou expresses his thoughts of a change in lifestyle to Lin Setsu A as they travel around the land, as he does not wish to live up to his ominous name given to him as a result of the misfortunes surrounding his birth. Lin Setsu A suggests to his bodyguard to try to live out this life under a different alias and debut this alias at a tournament held by Setsu Mu Syou's former swordsmanship master, the Sword Saint Tekkisen. However, Lin Setsu A has other things in mind.

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The Episode of Syou Fu Kan, on the other hand, is a short segment that takes place between the first two seasons of Thunderbolt Fantasy. Syou Fu Kan arrives at a small inn in a town, where he meets a man who suddenly proclaims that he is Syou Fu Kan, and that he single-handedly ended the reign of terror of the Genkishuu over Dong-Li by slaying Betsu Ten Gai. The real Syou Fu Kan decides to listen to the man's story, a highly exaggerated and incorrect retelling of the first season's events. Unbeknownst to both men, some remaining Genkishuu are after Syou Fu Kan's head and they have some new tricks up their sleeves.

The film was released in Japanese theaters on December 2, 2017, and Taiwan on December 8, 2017, bringing back the same All-Star Cast and All-Star Staff from the first season franchise with Japanese voice dubbing only, save for Taiwanese soliloquies; the film also marks the presentation of the Mandarin Chinese version of the theme song, "RAIMEI" sung by T.M.Revolution.

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The film's Blu-ray and DVDs were released on April 4th, 2018.


Important Note: For the convenience of editing, all names and terminologies for this work will go by, or lean towards Japanese romanization used by Nitro+; further comparison between languages of character names will be listed in their character page.

Spoiler Warning: Due to the film incorporating both a prequel and a sequel to a released work, unmarked spoilers will be present.


This film provides examples of:

In General

  • April Fools' Day: TBF Project announced a crossover collaboration between Thunderbolt Fantasy and Touken Ranbu on April 1, 2018; expected for release on April 1, 2206. This, obviously, is a non-canon announcement project. The poster of Syou Fu Kan and Sengo Muramusa is a parody of Thunderbolt Fantasy: The Sword of Life and Death.

The Episode of Setsu Mu Syou

  • A Day in the Limelight: The film sets focus on Setsu Mu Syou, and the revelation of the reason for his hatred against Lin Setsu A.
  • Downer Ending: After Lin Setsu A framed Setsu Mu Syou for foul play and hiring an archer to injure/kill most of the participants in the Sword Art Assembly, he lost all hope of redemption, regaining his honor, and trust. The only thing left for Setsu Mu Syou to live by is to hunt down Lin Setsu A and kill anyone who knows him.
  • Gorn: Even more pumped than Season 1. Pili reportedly submerged their entire crew with their worst bloodbath ever for this film—literally. The whole team of puppeteers commented about their angst of walking out on the streets to buy dinner only to be treated as murderers by everyone who had seen them.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Word of God also reported that their bloodbath had gone so bad, that they had to revamp a few scenes into this.
  • Tournament Arc: The Sword Art Assembly is the main setting of the film and it takes place before the first season.

The Episode of Syou Fu Kan

  • Big Damn Heroes: Syou Fu Kan saves his impostor from the remaining survivors of the Genkishuu.
  • Breather Episode: Word of God outright revealed the whole purpose for this segment is to not let the audience leave the theater drowning their face wet. Yet to a certain degree, it still does.
  • Call-Back: The remnant Genkishuu have learned a magic spell that explodes their corpses and turns their blood into deadly acid when they're killed. Now what sort of demoness who has it out for a man who has the power and numerous magic swords to defeat a demon god could have taught them that spell?
  • The Cameo: Several characters (Except Tan Kou, Renki, and You Ja Rei) who appeared in the first season makes a cameo in Syou Fu Kan's impostor flashback.
  • CliffHanger: The film ends with Syou Fu Kan finding out Lin Setsu A was the one who's been spreading stories about him and three individuals are now mobilizing to his location.
  • Target Audience: The Taiwanese audience were caught by surprise to actually witnessed the "Mealbox Slang" note  being written in for the story and made its way to the Japanese dub. The other point was a cameo by a Pili Series character named "Kitentei (Qì Tiān Dì, Emperor of Relent)."
  • Time Skip: The film takes place one month after the first season ended.
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