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Manga / Hyouge Mono

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Hyouge Mono is one of the Spring 2011 anime series. Based on the manga by Yoshihiro Yamada, In the age of civil war, when the shadow of Nobunaga Oda was still cast over the land, the warlord Furuta Sasuke lost his soul to the tea ceremony. While war shook the world around him, he faced his own conflict between his desire for promotion and his love for his art.

Animated by Bee Train produced for NHK Network.

Tropes used by the series:

  • An Aesop: The series has a recurring theme that art is subjective and people will take from it the meaning they want to take, not what the artist intended for them to take. This happens multiple times in the series, where someone tries to use art and aesthetics to give an important message, but instead ends up being interpreted in a completely different way, often tragically. Best exemplified when Master Rikyuu sends his daughter a message in a poem intended to tell her to forego revenge for his death and to live a long and happy life, but she instead interprets it as a message telling her to seek revenge, which ultimately gets her killed.
    • A second Aesop can be "Your sense of aesthetics is going to be different from everyone else's and that's okay, don't expect others to get it, and you shouldn't try to force your sense of aesthetics on others". Master Rikyuu's aesthetic sense is based on "Simplicity", but it is largely only able to spread the way it has due to the power and influence he has within Japan, as evidenced when he visits a local noble and discovers that the seeming "spontaneous" simplicity of the greeting and meeting is in fact specifically staged for the sole purpose of currying favor with Master Rikyuu, rather than an understanding or appreciation of the aesthetic. Further, when foreign emissaries from outside of Japan view his wares, the wares are mocked as being poor and unrefined due to their simplicity when compared to ones from their home country because unlike everyone else in Japan, they don't have to fear the consequences of angering the powerful and influential man who created the aesthetic.
  • Been There, Shaped History: Master of Tea Ceremony Rikyuu is the one who convinced Akechi Mitsuhide and Toyotomi Hideyoshi to betray Nobunaga Oda and he is the one behind many important events in history.
  • Blasphemous Boast: Nobunaga has no less than three. The first one is when boasting his intention to conquer mainland China, India, and beyond to become God. The second is when he's referencing the story of the Tower of Babylon; he says because he is neither king nor general, he will still climb higher. The third is when he's referencing Hannibal Barca of Carthago; he claims he is undefeated unlike Hannibal.
  • Cultured Warriors: Many military officers either have interest or are skilled in court etiquette in general and tea ceremony in particular. This rather enrages Merchant Souji who states warriors only imitate what the merchants have refined for years.
  • The Dandy: Some Oda Clan members and Toyotomi Hideyoshi always dress in the latest fashion. The protagonist himself knows taste and does it if occasion and budget permits.
  • Dirty Coward: Some named warriors choose life over honor and do some "dishonorable acts" to achieve that. Yet this manga doesn't condemn them or paint them in a bad light for their choices.
    Araki Murashige: As long as I stay alive, I can continue to enjoy what life has to offer, which is more than can be said for Nobunaga.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: Nobunaga at Honnoji was killed by his trusted man but doesn't mind at all.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Hideyoshi cannot bring himself to betray another of his protectors after his betrayal of Nobunaga no matter how much it will benefit him.
  • Face Death with Dignity:
    • Oda Nobunaga offers the man who slashed his belly a cup of his spilled blood in place of an "improvised tea ceremony" and states to the man he does not hold any grudges as their relationship is of "give and take".
    • Mitsuhde Akechi too.
  • Gratuitous Portuguese: Nobunaga peppers his speech with Portuguese words.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: Master Rikyuu demonstrates this by violently opposing his Hara-kiri so that all parties involved, even those who are strongly opposed to it, will be able to go through with it without regrets. He further uses it to cause Sasuke to realize his true self so that he can finally achieve his true sense of aesthetics.
  • Historical Fiction
  • Humanity Is Flawed: People is shown as greedy, short-sighted, or hold many other vices but one can also find satisfaction, serenity, chivalry, and any other virtues with efforts.
  • Impossibly Cool Clothes: Downplayed with Oda Nagamasu here. His Outfits are usual high quality Japanese robe and a turban. The observer gave him scores 6 of 5.
  • Jidaigeki
  • The Last DJ: How this series portray Mitsuhide as he is one of few who is steadfast, humble, and chivalric high noble in the changing times.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Toyotomi Hideyoshi and Master Rikyuu. Hideyoshi persuades Akechi Mtsuhide to rebel but abandons him as soon as the rebellion starts. Master Rikyuu is the one who convinces the former to wrest power, basically The Man Behind the Man Behind The Man.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: Small wonder in this manga for Akechi and his clan rebels, as what await them after unification is the "present" of the (by that time) barren territory of Kanto. See, You Have Outlived Your Usefulness below.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: When Master Rikyuu hears the death poem of Mitsuhide Akechi he breaks down in tears because by leaving off the third line of the haiku, they demonstrated a mastery of the concept of "Simplicity" which demonstrated tremendous future potential. Due to having set into motion the sequence of events that caused Akechi's early death, Rikyuu is filled with regrets and realizes that he has become no better than the people he despises.
  • Pretender Diss:
    • Rikyuu chides Hideyoshi for not ruling the court and states he is just an imitation of Oda Nobunaga unless he grows his power and vision more.
    • Rikyuu scolds Sasuke for his incomplete understanding of simplicity.
  • Simple, yet Awesome: Oribe Furuta starts to learn Minimalism (or "Simplicity" in the setting) because of how he can look classy with minimum budget.
  • Wham Line:
    • Master Rikyuu drops one to Furuta Sasuke in chapter 75 to convince Sasuke to sever ties with him.
    Master Rikyuu: I manipulated the Chief Advisor into killing Nobunaga.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: As Oda Nobunaga nearly completes unification of Japan, threat of this tropes haunts many of his vassals. This trope is what Toyotomi Hideyoshi uses to persuade Akechi Mtsuhide to rebel.
    Takigawa Kizumasu (quoting Chinese Proverb): "When the rabbit dies, the hound is cooked."