An excellent series following the exploits of female ninja Orin (played by Aoyama Noriko). As part of a ninja group supposedly dedicated to the protection of the Shogun, Orin uncovers an internal plot to overthrow him. She also discovers that her (allegedly) stillborn baby is still alive and determines to be re-united with the child and deserts the group. As a result she is framed for two murders and must make her journey while being relentlessly pursued by assassins under the command of the sinister Uemura Doetsu. She is frequently assisted by a shadowy samurai called Kurasawa Yajuro and his ninja sidekick Sasuke. The Tegusari-nin assassins pursuing her are the usual collection of weapons and tactics specialists but Orin has a few tricks of her own such as her bracelet/sword/spear/garrotte! Orin's pursuit is set against a backdrop of political intrigue and in-fighting after the death of the Shogun Yoshimune and the ascendancy of Ooka Tadamatsu as the voice of the Shogun's feeble successor. Orin cuts a figure reminiscent of Coldwind Monjiro or Jokichi of Mikogami. There are also close comparisons with the Lone Wolf and Cub story. The series is tense and violent throughout and well worth a watch, like Lone Wolf, the odds are often stacked well against Orin. The only slight gripe at times is plot predictability as each episode seems to use the same plot template, the finale to this series though is well worth the wait and makes some of the earlier tedium worthwhile. Another annoyance are the preview sections at the end of each episode which can act as spoilers. There are 24 episodes in this series.
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