A Canadian-American animation set in 17th-century Edo-era Japan with a female warrior lead seeking revenge? Blue Eye Samurai should be an interesting watch, if nothing else.
Created and written by the husband and wife team Michael Green and Amber Noizumi, Blue Eye Samurai is an adult animated action series that has struck right through the hearts of critics and audiences alike ever since it debuted in the OTT landscape.
The animated series was given a formal green light back in Oct. 2020, conceptualized as an action-adventure focused on a mixed-race master of the sword who lives in disguise while pursuing retribution. Although Blue Eye Samurai is set 400 years in the past, its themes are contemporary, drawing from sources that are very personal to both Michael and Noizumi (via Deadline).
With many brilliant and experienced names attached to the project, including Jane Wu (Gold Mountain, Jackie Chan Adventures) as the supervising director and Erwin Stoff (Edge of Tomorrow) as an executive producer, Blue Eye Samurai is being looked up to with high expectations. So far, it has secured impressive scores on review platforms, initially opening to a 100% Rotten Tomatoes score. So, where can we watch the series and catch what’s the hype about?
Is Blue Eye Samurai on Netflix?
The one and only streaming juggernaut Netflix struck an overall TV deal with Michael Green back in 2020, and Blue Eye Samurai is one part of it. The 8-episode first season of the series, released altogether on Nov. 3, 2023, is available to watch exclusively on Netflix.
The husband-wide creator duo is known for their previous projects like Logan (2017) and Blade Runner 2049 (2017), but Blue Eye Samurai hits a little close to home for the duo. In an interview with Screen Rant, Noizumi beautifully put together the inspiration behind the series:
“A lot of it came from just my mixed race background, just feeling stuck between two worlds, and deciding, “What if we put those feelings into a world in Japan, where the borders were closed, where it was so homogenous, and that era is still heralded as the golden age of Japan? The golden age, where nobody was allowed in who looked different, and what that must have felt like. Just, let’s make a good story out of that.“
And the creators did exactly that. The series follows a half-white half-Japanese swordmaster named Mizu who lives a life in disguise seeking to deliver revenge. Why is she in disguise? She lives in 17th century Japan, where borders are closed to the outside world, and citizens would never see a face that was not Japanese. Mizu blames the only four white men who were in Japan at the time of her birth for making her a “creature of shame,” and sets off to kill them while concealing her gender and bright-blue eyes.
The series boasts a powerful voice cast including Maya Erskine, George Takei, Masi Oka, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, Brenda Song, Darren Barnet, Randall Park, and Kenneth Branagh. The vivid animation has a live-action edge where everything feels real from sceneries to characters. Catch Mizu’s revenge on Netflix now!