Project #125: Mushibugyo Part 1

(Nitsuj): Hello and welcome to Project Nitsuj.


(Jack Frost): Where bad anime burns.


(Nitsuj): That’s not me.


(Pyro Jack): He watches it so you don’t have to.


(Nitsuj): That’s not me either.


(Jack Frost): Than what the hell do you do you lazy bum?


(Nitsuj): I review and watch anime while making fun of it and pointing out anything that doesn’t make sense to me. Simple as that. As you can see I’m in my neighbor’s house this week. It turns out my system has a serious bug infection rendering the house unsafe to review in. Speaking of unsafe *takes out phone and calls Isis*. Hey Isis how’s the extermination you guys close to be doing done?


(Isis): That’s a strong negative master, it appears there’s more of these things than we had originally hoped for but don’t worry me, the other AIs, and S.W.O.R.D will get this problem worked out in no time *prepares to throw a Molotov*. Got to go, talk to you later *throws Molotov at a hornet looking virus after hanging up*.


(Nitsuj): So, you guys got any anime to watch over you.


(Pyro Jack): Sure, do you prefer any title?


(Nitsuj): Anything as long as it’s not mainstream.


(Jack Frost): Mainstream?


(Nitsuj): Yeah you know, an anime that everyone seems to know about, like, talk about and is constantly being shown in the media. Shows like Dragonball Z, One Piece, Fairy Tail, Bleach, Naruto, FMA, Kill La Kill, Attack on Titan, and SAO. Shows like that.


(Jack Frost): I’m guessing you’re not a fan mainstream huh?


(Nitsuj): Oh no far from it I enjoy mainstream. If you’re just starting to get into anime mainstream is a good entry point as it has something that everyone will find enjoyable. While mainstream anime is good I just think that it distracts people from going out and finding other lesser known animes that can be just as good if not better than mainstream. Like *grabs laptop and scans for lesser known but good anime* Mushibugyo.


(Pyro Jack): Mushibugyo? Never heard of that.


(Nitsuj): Yeah and it’s a shame you didn’t because this was one of the most underrated anime to come out in 2013. Mushibugyo started off as a manga written by Hiroshi Fukuda in 2009 to 2010 with a retelling and longer version of the story beginning in 2011 and still ongoing to this day. There’s also a videogame based off the series that came out for the 3DS in 2013 but only in Japan. The story takes places in this alternate Feudal Era of Japan where giant insects are running rampant and we follow the story of a young samurai who joins others in the fight against these insects. It’s a silly and crazy story but the author makes it work. The anime studio Seven Arcs (Inukami) saw the series and decided to turn it into a 26 episode series which is pretty impressive by today’s standards. Well it is the season of bugs so let’s celebrate by watching people kill them and take a look at Mushibugyo.


Opening and Ending Theme


The first opening for this anime is “Tomoyo” by Gagaga SP. This is a song that I like but at the same time I know I shouldn’t like. Why? Because everything an opening is supposed to do, it does the opposite. Usually an opening song matches up with the opening animation or provides us insight into what the anime is going to be about through the song. Here, it does none of that stuff. The song doesn’t match up with the animation, it doesn’t tell us anything about the show we’re about to watch, and it honestly feels like the singer is mocking me. Like he knows this opening doesn’t make any sense and is just singing random words to mock us. And that’s what makes this opening so enjoyable. It’s the fact that it’s so out of place you can’t help but enjoy it. That and it has a good instrumental, that guitar in the background is awesome to listen to and the singer is just singing his heart out all while mocking us. The ending for this anime is “Ichizu” by i☆Ris. This song is a little more serious than the opening. It matches up well with the animation and actually sounds a little sad as if we’re hearing the inner thoughts and cries of a character in the show. Overall I thought the song was good.


Episodes 1-4


The story begins in the alternate Feudal Era of Japan where giant insects called “Mushi” have been terrorizing the country killing God knows how many people (so this is where Black Bullet got their story from). After hearing the cries of his people the shogun establishes the Mushi Magistrate City Patrol a group of warriors from across the land put together to fight the Mushi and destroy them once and for all. Our story takes place in Edo where the main character Jinbei voiced by KENN aka Kenichirō Ōhashi (Jaden from Yu-Gi-Oh GX) has just arrived to joined the Mushi Magistrate City Patrol (and I have to admit when I first saw him all I could think was: ohh~ this guy is small, he won’t last a day). Originally Jinbei’s father a world famous samurai was asked to join the patrol but is unable to travel due to the fact that he’s handicapped. When Jinbei was a kid his father was escorting this important VIP and his son. When the noble’s son wondered off in the forest he got attacked by one of the Mushis and Jinbei was unable to protect him which resulted in the noble’s son peeing his pants out of fear (really? The kid peed his pants out of a giant bug? I guess it was too early to take him out of training diapers). Upset by his son’s disgrace the noble demands that Jinbei pay a price for not being able to protect his son (uh, how about instead of blaming Jinbei for your son stupidly leaving your side you reprimand the son for not having balls and wetting himself out in public). Jinbei’s dad takes responsibility and pierces his foot with his sword thus being unable to travel long distances anymore. Jinbei wanting to live up to his family name and be a strong samurai like his father has taken it upon himself to travel to Edo and go in his father’s place. Once he arrives in Edo he gets lost and no one wants to help him (I guess this was before manners became important to the Asian culture) except for one person, a beautiful girl named Haru who works at her family’s tea shop and has big-breast. She’s voiced by Satomi Akesaka. After getting some food Haru escorts Jinbei to the Magistrate office but along the way a Mushi spider (which is the biggest spider I’ve seen in my life. I’m gonna need a bigger shoe) devours one of the townsfolk and Jinbei tries to kill it only to fail and get knocked on his ass (not the best way to display your fighting skills). The spider escapes and Jinbei runs into Kotori the commander of Edo’s Magistrate Office (care to explain to me how a giant man-eating spider sneaked into the city unnoticed?). The spider returns and kidnaps Haru (oh no it craves boobs now. Kill it before it destroys are main source of fanservice). Jinbei chases the spider back to an abandoned temple (Spider: Dude I’m trying to score here! Well eat is more like it but still you, rude) where Jinbei fights the spider off long enough for us to meet the City Patrol. First up is Hibachi voiced by Rumi Ōkubo, a badass kunochi who specializes in explosives (and she has an explosively good body). Next up is Shungiku a convicted murderer known as the “Killer of 99” voiced by Takuya Eguchi (Shinji from Kuroko’s Basketball) and Tenma the youngest member of the City Patrol who comes from a wealthy family and can summon powerful familiars to do his fighting (okay so we got a CQC warrior, mid-range warrior, and a sorcerer. Not a bad party). He’s voiced by two-year veteran Yū Serizawa. The city patrol comes in and takes out all the spiders in the temple and Jinbei takes out the big spider saving Haru. But before he can celebrate his victory mama comes in prepared for revenge and he gets saved by the final member of the city patrol Mugai voiced by Takuma Terashima (Teppi from Princess Lover!), the silent member of the group who is said to be the strongest member of the city patrol and has the admiration of Jinbei. After destroying all the spiders and saving Haru, Kotori impressed with Jinbei’s skills and determination allows him to join Magistrate.


In episode 2 we learn a little more about Hibachi. The group is told that another bug has been spotted near Edo and they’ve been assigned to take care of it. As the group is getting ready to move out Jinbei is told not to draw his sword or engage in combat on account of he’s new, weak, and they can’t spare anymore time looking for new recruits (well maybe if you gave them a little more proper training the new recruits would last longer) and the rest of the group really have no expectations for Jinbei other than him dropping out soon or dying (nice support guys). Even though Jinbei isn’t allowed to draw his sword he’s still allowed to patrol the city with Hibachi where she opens up to him a little. We find out that she comes from a secret ninja village that used to specialize in explosives until they all retired once peace came (what peace? We have giant insects killing people all across Japan, when exactly did peace kick in?) except for Hibachi’s grandfather who continued to practice the ninja arts of explosions and past his knowledge on to her. Once she was scouted by Kotori she left the village and joined the Magistrate office where she developed feelings of love and admiration for Mugai because he saved her on her first mission (are you sure it’s not for his hair. *The Jack Bros. gives Nitsuj a puzzling look* Oh come on it takes talent to pull off his hair style). As the two are patrolling the riverbank they find the giant insect which is a dragonfly (oh man those things are mean). Hibachi takes it on while Jinbei gets the remaining survivors to safety and at first she does well but her explosions seem to do little damage and when she lands in the water getting the powder wet (cheap shells) she becomes defenseless and gets saved by Jinbei who attacks the beast without unsheathing his sword. The two pursue the dragonfly with Hibachi dealing the final blow and Jinbei earning her respect a little (although I think it might have gone down when he saw her naked in the tub at the end of the episode).


We focus on Shungiku in episode 3. Edo has been hit with a series of robberies and everyone thinks Shungiku is responsible since he’s a convicted murderer (hey he murders people he doesn’t rob them pay attention Edo). Jinbei stands up for Shungiku saying he has nothing to do with these robberies but when they find him on the scene of a robbery and he refuses to answer why he was there the police arrest him and lock him up. As he’s locked up we here Shungiku’s backstory. It turns out he’s the son of a gangster who didn’t kill people out of respect for his mother who told him to never kill (lying, stealing, cheating, and rape are fine but I will not tolerate any killing in this house). But all that changed when he arrived home one day and saw his mother dead before his eyes (and she was such a nice lady too). This of course causes Shungiku to go insane and he goes on a killing spree killing his whole gang and some police officers totally 99 people. When he’s about to kill his father Kotori appears before him and tells him that the person who killed his mother is someone from the Insect Hunters a group of hunters who hunt insects but for some reason went rogue (I’m sure we’ll here about them later). Seeking revenge Shungiku joins the Magistrate office in the hopes of finding the person who killed his mother and avenge her. Jinbei busts Shungiku out of jail but they don’t get far and are surrounded by police officers who want to kill Shungiku to avenge their fallen comrades (and he’s an escaped convict so they have all the permission in the world to kill him). But before any killing can be done two giant praying mantis show up and begin wrecking the town (I don’t know how we keep missing these giant insects). Shungiku stays behind to fight them while Jinbei gets all the people to safety. Two officers attack Shuugiku in the back hoping to watch the insects kill him but Jinbei comes back to save Shuugiku and together they defeat the praying mantises and it turns out they were the ones responsible for all the robberies (now what would a bunch of praying mantises want with money? (Jack Frost): Maybe they like to gamble and needed to get out of a gambling debt). Shungiku is cleared of all accusations and he celebrates by going out to drink with Jinbei.


In episode 4 we focus on Tenma who has a fear of crawling bugs (cre~eee~py crawlers). Jinbei discovers this and makes a pinky promise not to tell anyone and help Tenma overcome his fears. Hibachi and Shungiku overhear there conversation and the next day they play a prank on Tenma by giving him a bag of centipedes scary the kid (not gonna lie, that was pretty mean). Tenma thinks Jinbei betrayed him so he runs away but gets called back when another bug attacks the city (Christ again? These things are quieter than Snake in a Metal Gear Solid game) and this time it’s a centipede called the Thousand Centipede (it’s a centipede, it doesn’t have a thousand legs). With the encouragement of everyone Tenma is able to overcome his fear of bugs and help the team defeat the centipede. But the main highlight of this episode was seeing a wet Haru (thank you animators).


Episodes 5-9


Not much happens in episode 5. Mugoi is asked to eliminate fleas that are trying to turn a government minister’s house into their nest. Mugoi teams up with Jinbei because he’s the weakest and if Jinbei dies he’ll be the easiest to replace (if he dies, he dies). The two go to the mansion where Mugoi takes on the male flea and Jinbei takes on the female (also a fun little fact about flees. The female is the dominant one and is like 2 times bigger than the male. Yeah, Jinbei might have just screwed himself on this). At first Jinbei does well taking on the female but he gets stabbed in the stomach and is having his blood sucked right out of him (bloodsucking bitch. First she takes your money than she takes your blood). Somehow, not passing out or dying from the blood loss Jinbei holds on long enough for Mugoi (who’s shocked to see him still alive as well) to show up and save him. The two return with Mugoi impressed with Jinbei and admitting to himself that Jinbei has potential (oh yeah, everybody loves Jinbei now).


In episode 6 we get introduced to a new character named Nagatomimaru voiced by Jun Fukuyama (Lawrence from Spice and Wolf). The best way to describe this character is a character who got lost trying to get to the Gintama anime and somehow wound up in this anime. You get as funny a character as possible. Nagatomimaru is a man who has abandoned the common world not trusting anyone or anything and instead spends the majority of his time reading books and soaking in their knowledge (Japan’s first NEET) while wearing a Noah mask to cover up his pretty boy face. After finally reading all the books he can get his hands on he tries to sneak in the Magistrate’s Insect archives to learn more knowledge but he inavertedly gets stopped by Jinbei and Hibachi. After insulting Hibachi and getting beat up for it (dude I know this is feudal Japan but let’s try not to insult the short-tempered ninja girl okay) Jinbei is ordered to take him home where along the way Jinbei praises him for his vast knowledge but Nagatomimaru thinks Jinbei is just lying to him like everyone else. As they head back to Nagatomimaru’s place a mosquito attacks a citizen and Jinbei has to fight it. The mosquito is tough however as its fast and strong giving Jinbei quite a hard time and Nagatomimaru believing that everything he’s witnessing to be a bad dream (do I have to punch you? Because I’ll do it. I love punching dumbass characters) that is until the mosquito tries to attack him and Jinbei uses his arm to protect him (are you awake now mask boy?). This wakes up Nagatomimaru and he uses his vast knowledge to create an insect repellent that dazes the mosquito allowing Jinbei to come in and kill it (what works? (Nitsuj, Pyro Jack, and Jack Frost: Team work). They return to the Magistrate office and drink celebrating their victory with everyone until they all pass out. Nagatomimaru uses this opportunity to sneak into the archives where he discovers a map of Japan with half the country X out (there’s treasure in that there country). Kotori comes in and stops him where he reveals that Nagatomimaru is the first son of the reigning shogun and is next in line for the title. They work out a deal where Kotori won’t reveal Nagatomimaru’s true identity to anyone if he keeps what he’s discovered a secret and Nagatomimaru agrees to these conditions however he demands that he be allowed to come back and visit Jinbei since he’s developed a friendship with him (a broship if you will).


It’s summertime in episode 7 and you know what that means? (Pyro Jack): Fanservice season? (Nitsuj): Besides that. (Jack Frost): Bikini Season? (Nitsuj): Besides that. Think along the lines of annoying and small. (Pyro Jack and Jack Frost): Bug season. (Nitsuj): Yes! Bug season has arrived and each year in Edo a giant fortress-sized insect comes to destroy the town (man with all these bugs attack Edo must have some good insurance). Luckily, the Magistrate Office has a safety procedure for this situation. Mugoi takes on the fortress-size insect by himself while everyone else gets the people to safety and the people watch Mugoi fight because this is a part of the summer festival. While that’s going on Jinbei (oblivious to the whole summer war going on) helps a mysterious white-haired woman who wants to watch the fireworks but can’t leave the mansion she lives in. At the end of the day Mugoi defeats the insect and summer begins that night with flowers lighting up the night sky. Everyone is amazed by the fireworks and the white-haired woman gives Jinbei a bell as his reward for helping her out so much. At the end of the episode we find out that the mysterious white-haired woman is named Kuroageha voiced by Megumi Han, leader and head chief of the Insect Magistrate Office (well saw that coming a mile away).


In episode 8 the Insect Hunters have sent their spy the lovely Misaki to Edo to find out the whereabouts of Kuroageha who has left the city for some reason. Their goal, to kill her and exact their revenge on her (look just because she dumped all of you doesn’t mean you still can’t be friends). Misaki befriends Jinbei using her feminine charm (and by charm I mean breast) to get Jinbei to fall for her and pump him for information on Kuroageha’s whereabouts. Her plan seems to be working that is until Haru shows up in the picture and all of sudden Jinbei’s focus is shifted toward Haru’s peaches instead of Misaki’s peaches (battle of the peaches). Misaki tries to embarrass Haru by making her trip and get wet (*Jack Frost has snow fly out of his nose and he faints* (Nitsuj): What the- (Pyro Jack): Snow bleed. Similar to a nosebleed only with snow instead of blood) but that plan only makes Jinbei more concerned for Haru and completely ignore Misaki. Misaki decides to kidnap Haru and hold her ransom for Jinbei to come and save her where Jinbei reveals that he’s never even met Kuroageha (oh sure you have you watched the fireworks together) and he reprimands Misaki for her actions (so innocent and naïve). Misaki uses her powers to control the insects who pull Jinbei down into a sand pit where Haru manages to free herself and they try to use the building wreckage to reach the top of the pit and escape while fighting insects (I could totally see this working out in a game). The insects surround them with the rest of the group coming in to save them and Misaki escaping with Jinbei still believing she’s a good person (that kid’s innocence is way too funny). We end the episode with the rest of the Insect Hunters somehow figuring out Kuroageha’s location and going to kill her.


In episode 9 all the patrols in Edo hear about the Insect Hunters heading to kill Kuroageha (somehow and I say somehow because they never tell us how they all found out) and they all mobilize to head to the island she’s on to protect her because if she dies all of Edo is screwed (if she dies, we die). As they all sail to the island they get attacked by one of Insect Hunter members who is obsessed with dying (than go kill yourself scum). He destroys the ship and traps everyone in a ring of fire with no escape (out in the middle of the ocean. Physics be damned). Luckily, Hibachi and Jinbei manage to escape the ring of fire and continue to the island by air (and Jinbei cops a feel on Hibachi. Way to go). Shungiku kills the emo assassin and he, Tenma, Mugoi and Kotori make their way to the island where they get attacked by a gunman and Tenma takes him on while Shungiku and Mugoi keep going. Jinbei and Hibachi make it to the island where they get shot down (mayday mayday) and Hibachi fights another female assassin who can create sonic waves with her kicks and Jinbei lands in the temple with Kuroageha who he stupidly mistakes as the assistant of the Insect Magistrate. The Insect Hunters arrive and begin attacking Kuroageha where we see she has the power to create poison (One Piece did it but I kinda like this better). That’s right, she’s a poison lady, her body excretes poison. In fact, we’re told that if anybody so much as makes direct contact with her body they’ll die right on the spot. This is why Kuroageha is so important to Edo. Her powers keep some of the more dangerous insects away from the city (yet the city still gets attacked by bugs) and if she dies Edo will be pretty much defenseless and they’ll with more of those fortress-class insects. Kuroageha fights them off trying to move the fight away from Jinbei so he doesn’t get hurt (she’s falling for him) but Jinbei keeps getting in the way determined to protect her (Jack Frost: Good on ya Jinbei). We end the episode with Mugoi fighting a mask assassin who reveals that Mugoi was once the leader of the Insect Hunters (oh my. . .I am not surprised by this information I sort of had my theories about his past). Shungiku hears this and attacks Mugoi believing that he’s the one responsible for killing his mother.


Episodes 10-13


Episode 10 picks up where episode 9 left off. After a short sword fight Mugoi tells Shungiku that he’s not the one who killed his mother (you could have told him that from the beginning but you know. Back on Jinbei and Kuroageha’s side she gets the idea that Jinbei is a spy of the Insect Hunters because she can’t stop thinking about him (it’s because you like him, he’s the first person who’s never feared your powers, lied to you, or treats you like a weapon. Not to mention he’s the main character so you’re obligated to like him). But once Jinbei uses his body as a shield to protect Kuroageha and passes out she finally realizes that all this time Jinbei was on her side and was just trying to protect her (Pyro Jack: A little late but better than never). Mad at what they did to Jinbei, Kuroageha unleashes the full extent of her powers on the Insect Hunters but they came prepared and fired a big arrow at her which contained a smaller arrow (arrow-ception) which pierces her chest and nullifies her powers turning her into a helpless woman (kind of like when Batman used that kryptonite arrow to make Superman a normal human-being). Despite being helpless she’s still determined to protect Jinbei the only person who treated her right (and because she likes him) and favor comes her way when the rest of the gang shows up to pull her and Jinbei to safety while Mugoi and Shungiku stay behind to fight the Insect Hunters. Shungiku finally faces the man who killed his mother and borrowing the three-sword styled from Zoro (you forgot to put one in your mouth) he manages to defeat his mother’s killer and changes his nickname to “Killer of 100” (technically 101 but hundred sounds cooler and easier to say). A few of the Insect Hunters catch up to the gang and separates the troops from Jinbei and Kuroageha. Hibachi tells Kuroageha to go on without them (run~, get to the boata) and she continues to escape while carrying Jinbei.


The fight continues in episode 11 where Jinbei wakes up again and goes through a mysterious transformation attacking everyone weather they be friend or foe. Thanks to this transformation he manages to save Kuroageha from one of the Insect Hunters and manages to save the others as well but he’s not the same Jinbei everyone knows and loves (demonic powers will do that to a guy). Luckily when another Insect Hunter is trying to kill Kuroageha, Jinbei hears her bell and returns back to normal saving her and then passing out again (will you stop doing that). The 4 remaining Insect Hunters decide to withdraw saying that they can kill Kuroageha any time now (than why don’t you do it right now with everyone exhausted and almost down for the count. Unless of course you guys are too scared of Jinbei) and we end the episode with everyone returning to Edo but being watched by mysterious insects in the sky.


The group returns to Edo in episode 12 with the whole city in panic because of the bugs tearing it apart (probably not the best idea sending all the guys who specialize in killing the giant man-killing insects away) but hopes come in the form of Jinbei’s father who has come all the way to Edo to kill bugs, drink saki, and check up on his boy (and he’s all out of saki to drink). We quickly see that the two have a good father-son relationship in that the father beats up Jinbei for lacking discipline and Jinbei openly welcomes his father’s insane teaching methods (ah~ the good old days when you could physically discipline a child and not have to worry about child services breathing down your neck). Jinbei tells his father that he realizes how weak he is compared to everyone else so the father takes it upon himself to teach the 36 sword techniques of his family so that Jinbei can become stronger. The two go up to Mt. Fuji to train for the next 3 days where Jinbei’s father motivates Jinbei to learn the first technique the Fuji Hammer by striking Mt. Fuji causing it to erupt within 3 days’ time (well that’s some good motivation. Master my technique in 3 days or watch Mt. Fuji destroy hundreds of people). After two days of nonstop training Jinbei still hasn’t mastered the technique and on the third day when lava has completely filled the top of Mt. Fuji covering Jinbei’s marker he gathers up all of his energy, splits the lava in half, and strikes his marker stopping Mt. Fuji from erupting and mastering the Fuji Hammer technique (so much for the learn 12 techniques a day agenda).


Not that much to say about episode 13 other than seeing a recap episode of all the events that have happened up until now and getting some fanservice from Hibachi, Haru, and Kuroageha. (Pyro Jack): So other than the boobs this episode is pretty pointless right? (Nitsuj): Yep. *fire starts comes flying out of Pyro Jack’s nose and he faints* What in the world- (Jack Frost): Fire bleed. Very similar to my snow bleed. (Nitsuj): Man you guys are easily aroused. He gonna be alright? (Jack Frost): Oh don’t worry he’ll be back up in a few minutes. (Nitsuj): Alright. Why don’t we stop here and take a little rest. (Jack Frost): Works for me, I gotta use the restroom anyway. (Nitsuj): And I need to check on the girls and make sure they don’t destroy the house. Well guys thanks for reading and I’ll see you next time on Project Nitsuj.


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