Blade of the Immortal

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Blade of the Immortal (Mugen-no-Jūnin) is a manga that was created by Hiroaki Samura. Samura is most well-known for Blade of the Immortal, which, in fact, won the Excellence Prize in 1997 at the Japan Media Arts Festival. It also won the Will Eisner comic Industry Award in the year 2000. It is currently being released in the United States just as a comic book would be.


Manji is an extremely skilled samurai warrior and has the advantage of being invincible to any wound. He became invincible due to a terrible tragedy in his past. He did some bad things, and these bad things led to one hundred samurai dying. Yaobikini, an eight hundred year old nun, decided to make him immortal, and he has vowed that he will make amends for the good samurai’s death by killing 1000 evil men. He is kept alive by blood worms. They attach themselves to him whenever he has an injury and give up their lives in order to keep him alive and whole.

Eventually, Manji helps a young girl, Asano Rin, avenge her parents. A swordsman named Anotsu Kagehisa was responsible for their deaths, killing the family and dojo in order to turn them into outcasts. He plans to gather all of the outcasts in order to make the strongest dojo that has ever been created. A group known as Mugai-ryu are against this new dojo, Itto-ryu. They convince Manji to join them, but he leaves when he discovers that Shira, one of the members, is extremely sadistic. He then learns that the group is working for the government.


  • Manji – Manji has the ability to heal from any wound. He relaxes quite often and is usually seen sleeping. Manji wishes he were not immortal, and even tries to get the nun to take back the ability to live forever. She agrees, but only after he has killed 1000 bad men.
  • Rin Asano – Rin is the only one that survived that attack on her family’s dojo. She wants to avenge her family, but her sword skills are not that great. She finds herself caring for Manji, but it is unclear as to how he feels about her.
  • Kagehisa Anotsu – Kagehisa is the leader of the dojo known as the Itto-ryu. His dojo is all about who is stronger, not learning how to be obedient and respectful. He is a sympathetic villain, and often does good things for the simple reason of doing them.
  • Taito Magatsu – Taito is with the Itto-ryu and is one of the best swordsmen there is. He is one of the only ones alive to have battled with Manji and lived.
  • Makie Otono-Tachibana – She is in love with the leader of the dojo, Anotsu. She is also a master swordswoman and was able to save Anotsu’s life when he was young, which is why he shows devotion to her. She winds up becoming a geisha because she did not have the patience to live the warrior’s life.
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