Score 7.77

Saraiya Goyou

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Status: Completed Studio: Released: 2010 Duration: 22 min. per ep. Season: Type: Episodes: 12 Posted by: AC Released on: Updated on:

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Synopsis Saraiya Goyou

Masanosuke "Masa" Akitsu is a wandering ronin adrift in Japan's peaceful Edo period. Despite being a skilled swordsman, Masa's meek personality has netted him the label "unreliable," and he is often abruptly dismissed by his employers, leading him to question his resolve as a samurai.

As Masa reaches his lowest point, he is approached by Yaichi, a carefree man draped in pink who seemingly hires him on a whim as his bodyguard. Unbeknownst to Masa, the job is not as innocent as it seems, and he is drawn into the illicit activities of the group spearheaded by Yaichi. As he becomes further entwined with the gang known as the Five Leaves, Masa struggles with his own principles. Still, his curiosity spurs him forward to uncover the past and motivations of this mysterious band of outlaws.

Saraiya Goyou (House of Five Leaves): Anime Review

Today’s review is focused on an absolute gem, Saraiya Goyou also known as House of Five Leaves. Let’s dive into this engaging world of samurai, outlaws, and moral ambiguity together!


Saraiya Goyou, set in the Edo period, crafts a beguiling narrative of the ironically peaceful and contemplative underbelly of society. The storyline revolves around the lead character, Masanosuke Akitsu, an exceptionally skilled samurai whose timid personality often prevents him from holding a steady position. Struggling with his nature, his fate changes when he meets the charismatic Yaichi, the leader of a bandit gang named “Five Leaves”.

Intrigued and somewhat coerced, Masanosuke eventually becomes embroiled in the world of the Five Leaves, consisting of an intriguing mix of people, each carrying their own unique backstories. This slow-paced historical drama weaves a compelling tale about these outcasts, blurring the borders between right and wrong, examining human nature, and highlighting the beauty of friendship and trust amongst the least expected individuals.


Saraiya Goyou stands out in its category as a soothing and introspective anime amidst those filled with action-packed sequences. Its plot is thematically rich and the storytelling immaculate, which for me, is the biggest draw.

The animation style might feel unorthodox compared to mainstream anime, but trust me, the narrative depth sure does compensate for it. The style, in fact, evokes the charm of Ukiyo-e art, adding another layer of historical authenticity to the aesthetic. The exquisite composition of the background score, balancing traditional Japanese music with soft jazz, adds a hauntingly attractive ambiance to the series.

Characters are the beating heart of the series, each fundamentally flawed yet intriguing, capable of evoking empathy despite their troubled pasts. The protagonist, Masanosuke Akitsu, is truly an unconventional samurai. His journey from a timid soul to someone who embraces uncertainty is truly captivating. Yaichi, on the other hand, is a charismatic enigma, with a complex backstory that unravels intriguingly across the series. The remaining gang members are equally well-crafted, and their interrelationships add an appealing dynamic.

The pacing might be slow for some viewers who are more inclined towards the action genre. However, this allows for a gradual development of characters and their relationships, thereby intensifying the dramatic payoff. The series wonderfully encapsulates the Edo-period lifestyle, displaying the serene yet sinister underworld that thrived amidst societal norms.

In my verdict, Saraiya Goyou is a perfect blend of cerebral and emotional story-telling, delivered through beautifully flawed characters. It is a must-watch for as much its aesthetic appeal as its intricate narrative. It’s worth streaming first, and if it touches a cord -which I’m sure it will, adding it to your personal collection would be the best next step!

Remember, anime isn’t just about high-octane battles or quirky comedy; it’s also about meditative historical pieces like Saraiya Goyou that can leave you completely mesmerized.

This is the Anime Critic, signing off. More reviews coming soon!

Saraiya Goyou
7.77 / 10 Reviewer
{{ reviewsOverall }} / 10 Users (0 votes)
Saraiya Goyou impresses with its unique art style and engaging storyline. Additionally, the complex character development and mature themes add depth and interest to the show.
The pacing of Saraiya Goyou can be perceived as slow and tedious which might not appeal to everyone. The storyline is also not as action-packed as other anime, potentially alienating some viewers who prefer intense and thrilling scenes.
"Saraiya Goyou is a captivating anime set in the Edo period that follows a nervous samurai as he joins a crew of unique outlaws. The show offers a deep exploration of its characters, sumptuous artwork and a thoughtful portrayal of its historical setting. By balancing emotion, action and historical authenticity, Saraiya Goyou offers viewers a layered viewing experience not often found in the genre."
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Characters & Voice Actors

Yaichi Main
Akitsu, Masanosuke Main
Umezou Main
Matsukichi Main
Uchida, Yuuya Japanese
Take Main
Ono, Fuyuka Japanese
Yagi, Heizaemon Supporting
Souji Supporting
Houki, Katsuhisa Japanese
Benzou Supporting
Ishizuka, Unshou Japanese
Kinu Supporting
Takahashi, Ao Japanese
Jin Supporting
Nishi, Rintarou Japanese

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