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Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

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Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

Old 11-02-23, 10:44 AM
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Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song




Revenge is an art form. And Blue Eye Samurai takes it personally.

Set in 17th-century Edo-period Japan, Blue Eye Samurai follows Mizu (voiced by Maya Erskine), a mixed-race master of the sword who lives a life in disguise seeking to deliver revenge. “It’s an Edo-period tale of revenge — Kill Bill meets Yentl,” said co-creator Amber Noizumi.

Wife and husband team Noizumi and Michael Green (Logan, Blade Runner 2049) co-created Blue Eye Samurai. Sharpen your swords to prepare for this stunningly realized new animated series coming to Netflix on Nov. 3.

“We want people to sink into it and be taken by the story and the level of artistry and forget they’re watching animation,” said Green. “We would love this to cross over into every interest — that if you like The Witcher, if you like animation, if you like Game of Thrones, if you like The Crown, if you like historical drama, if you like Shakespeare in Love, if you like Tarantino movies, there’s something in Blue Eye Samurai for you.”

Here’s everything you need to know about Blue Eye Samurai to prepare for your quest.


What’s the plot of Blue Eye Samurai?

In 17th-century Japan, when borders are closed to the outside world, citizens would never see a face that was not Japanese, except in rare cases of illegal trade. Our hero, Mizu (Erskine), knows there were only four white men in Japan at the time of her birth and sets off to kill these men, one of whom might be her father, who made her a “creature of shame.” But revenge is not an option for women, so Mizu must forge her revenge quest while hiding her gender as well as her blue eyes.

Mizu is joined on her journey by Ringo (Masi Oka), an overeager soba maker who dreams of greatness; Taigen (Darren Barnet), a pompous samurai whose rivalry leads to an uneasy truce; and Princess Akemi (Brenda Song), Taigen’s betrothed, whose gilded life seems a foil to Mizu’s. Her revenge quest leads us across Edo-era Japan in a provocative series that immerses the viewer in vivid adult animation with a live-action edge.

Who’s in the Blue Eye Samurai cast?

Alongside Erskine, Oka, Barnet, and Song, the Blue Eye Samurai cast includes George Takei (Seki), Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa (The Swordmaker), Randall Park (Heiji Shindo), Kenneth Branagh (Abijah Fowler), Stephanie Hsu (Ise), Ming-Na Wen (Madame Kaji), Harry Shum Jr. (Takayoshi), and Mark Dacascos (Chiaki).

Representation was Noizumi and Green’s top priority when selecting their stacked voice cast for this project, from the key players to the group actors who were murmuring in the background of scenes. “We weren’t looking for people who had a ton of voice-over work experience. I think most of them did, but we wanted to make sure that everybody was actually Asian. We didn’t want to cast anybody who wasn’t,” said Noizumi.

Who created Blue Eye Samurai?

It’s the brainchild of Noizumi and Green, who came up with the idea after the birth of their child — who has blue eyes. Noizumi is half-Japanese, and she found herself thinking, “Why am I so excited that my daughter has blue eyes? What’s the big deal about that? And why am I so excited that I have a baby who looks more white?”

In their early creative conversations that would eventually span 15 years, they started spinning a tale about how “back in the Edo period starting in 17th-century Japan, it would’ve been illegal to be white. Nobody would’ve wanted to look white like that,” she said. And at some point in those initial talks, “We said something like, ‘She’s like a little blue-eyed samurai,’ ” said Green. “I wrote that down, knowing it was a good title.”

Alongside Noizumi and Green, Jane Wu (Mulan, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Game of Thrones) served as supervising director and producer, Erwin Stoff as executive producer, and Blue Spirit as the animation studio.

Like Noizumi, Wu shared a personal connection to Mizu — Wu understood Mizu’s decision to disguise herself as a man, since in the early Edo period she didn’t have much choice as a woman. “Describing Mizu is almost like describing myself in the way that her journey of self-acceptance was a journey I had to go on,” Wu said.

“Starting in this industry, I was in a very male-dominant industry, and I noticed that if I put in my portfolio with my name on it, I generally wouldn’t get the job because I was female. Often enough, my portfolio wasn’t looked at because I was female, so then I just started using my initials so you couldn’t tell whether I was male or female, and you would have to judge me by the work. That’s kind of what Mizu went through to complete her revenge, and I guess that’s what I’m doing — completing my revenge.”
Old 11-09-23, 02:29 PM
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Re: Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

I haven't watched a lot of animated series lately, other than "Primal", but I've been binging this one. Excellent animation and voicework, and the story has a terrific pace. I really expected a thriving thread, and hoped the fact I haven't quite finished (I stick pretty much to two eps a day of anything just to avoid burnout) wouldn't be spoiled. I guess that's not a problem, is it?
Old 11-09-23, 03:06 PM
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Re: Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

This is in my queue. Looks great.
Old 11-10-23, 05:30 AM
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Re: Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

This is one of the best shows Netflix has released in a long time

My only issue is the obvious Kill Bill influence
Old 11-10-23, 08:50 PM
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Re: Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

Originally Posted by Osiris3657
This is one of the best shows Netflix has released in a long time

My only issue is the obvious Kill Bill influence
Think about all the films that influenced "Kill Bill".
Old 11-11-23, 08:43 AM
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Re: Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

Originally Posted by DWilson
Think about all the films that influenced "Kill Bill".
That's what I was thinking.
Old 11-11-23, 08:11 PM
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Re: Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

You guys clearly haven't started or watched very much. Literally the same soundtrack at times
Old 11-13-23, 01:54 PM
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Re: Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

Finished it up last night. Excellent. The writing and story are 1st class, the action brutal and unforgiving. Cannot wait to see more seasons.

I started Onimusha last night too
Old 12-27-23, 03:03 PM
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Re: Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

I started watching this last night. I'm through episode 3 now and really loving it. The story is engaging, and the animation and voice acting are great. Definitely derivative and leans heavily on genre tropes, but in a good way, IMO. I was pleasantly surprised at how R-rated it gets at times. Looking forward to watching the rest.

Also, I see that it's been renewed for a second season.
Old 01-10-24, 09:23 AM
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Re: Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix) V: Erskine, Oka, Barnet, Song

Finished this last night and thought it was great.

"The Tale of the Ronin and the Bride" was outstanding and my favorite episode,

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