Hasegawa Heizo is the head of the special police who had jurisdiction over arson-robberies in Edo, having succeeded his father in the position. He brought the hammer of justice hard on the criminal underbelly of the capital, and with time his name filled criminals with dread. Soon, a villain bestows upon him the nickname "Onihei" - Heizo the Demon. Contrary to the nickname, however, he was not a heartless man. He would give a hand to those who would be willing to repent for their crimes, many of with would later serve him as informants and aid Heizo in solving difficult crimes. He and his men would need it, for the bustling city of Edo never slept...
Onihei Hankachou is a series of detective/Jidaigeki novels by Shotarou Ikenami which started in the December 1967 issue of the light novel magazine "All Yomimono (ja)" published by Bungei Shunjuu. The series was adapted various times into TV programs, film and theater.
The series provides examples of:
- Honor Among Thieves: Lampshaded by various characters on whether Edo thieves have such a code of honor. One thief considered it as old-fashion.
- Too Dumb to Live: Any ronin who tries to fight Heizo. They don't live for more than a minute.
The anime adaptation provides examples of:
- Animated Adaptation: Several Onihei stories were adapted into the episodes of the 2017 anime series.
- Battle in the Rain: Heizo finds him facing off against a ronin trying to assassinate him in downtown Edo in "The Evil Scent of Hakubaiko".
- Bittersweet Ending:
- "Honjo, Sakura Estate": The ATC was able to resolve the incident. But this means that Ofusa, a victim of circumstances, will be locked up for a while due to her crimes.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Heizo and his men are not above doing this in order to get the information they need to solve a crime.
- Wham Episode:
- In "Honjo, Sakura Estate", Heizo finds out that Ofusa, a young woman he knows when he was a young man, was the prime suspect in going after the Oumiya family.