Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Swordsman Romantic Story (るろうに剣心 -明治剣客浪漫譚-), also known as Rurouni Kenshin and Samurai X, is an anime based on the manga series written and illustrated by Nobuhiro Watsuki. Studio Gallop, Studio Deen and SPE Visual Works adapted the manga into an anime series which aired in Japan on Fuji Television from January 10, 1996 to September 8, 1998.
Rurouni Kenshin was originally dubbed by Sony Pictures Television International in 1999, who tried and failed to market the series in the United States under the title Samurai X via an existing company. Sony distributes this version to other English-speaking countries outside of the United States, where it airs on Animax. Little is known about the dub other than that it was done in Los Angeles. ADV Films would later dub the Movie and OVA's under the Samurai X title using their Austin, Texas based Monster Island Dubbing Studios and voice cast instead.
The TV Series would later be licensed by Media Blasters, who released the series, splitting it up into "seasons", and releasing them on DVD. Media Blasters would do their own dub of the series, provided by Bang Zoom! Entertainment utilizing much of the same voice actors from Sony's dub, but with extensive recasting. In producing their dub of the series, Media Blasters considered following the Japanese version, and giving Kenshin a female voice actress, with Mona Marshall considered a finalist to voice him. Richard Cansino, who previously voiced Kenshin in Sony's dub, was eventually chosen to reprise the role for Media Blasters' dub. Marshall was also selected to voice the younger Kenshin during flashback scenes.
Clark Cheng, Media Blasters dub script writer, said that localizing Kenshin's unusual speech was a difficult process. His use of de gozaru and oro were not only character trademarks that indicated his state of mind, but important elements to the story. However, neither is directly translatable into English, and in the end the company chose to replace de gozaru with "that I did," "that I am," or "that I do." Kenshin's signature oro was replaced with "huah" to simulate a "funny sound" that had no real meaning.
The Media Blasters dub aired in the US on Cartoon Network as a part of their Toonami Block on March 17, 2003, but after episode 48 aired on July 4, 2003 the series moved to Cartoon Network's Saturday Video Entertainment System block until the completion of the second season (episode 62), leaving the third season unaired in North America. The series returned to Toonami for a second run beginning on October 23, 2004 and ending on March 12, 2005. Some of the show's depictions of obscene language, intense violence, and tobacco and drug usage were subject to heavy editing on Toonami. Episodes 63-95 did not air, but were included in the DVD release. As of May 2017, all three seasons with both the original Japanese audio and the Media Blasters dub are available to stream on Netflix.
|Media Blasters||2000-2002||The Complete Series||1|
|2003-2004||The Complete Series|
|2010||The Complete Series|
- Rurouni Kenshin: The Motion Picture
- List of Rurouni Kenshin OVA's
- Rurouni Kenshin (live action adaptation)