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Toyama Kagemoto, an official of the Edo Bakufu and a samurai ranked as Hatamoto in service to the Tokugawa clan, is famously portrayed in the television series "Toyama no Kin-San".

If you've ever tuned into Japanese TV, you might be familiar with this period drama, depicting a samurai official who masquerades as a low-ranking warrior by day but emerges as a solver of crimes, champion of the common folk in Edo, and combatant against the program's villains. As the plot unfolds, Kin San engages in obligatory fight scenes, revealing his tattooed cherry blossom crest on his shoulders by removing the top of his kimono. These confrontations typically end with the villains subdued, just as the constabulary arrive to arrest them, allowing Kin San to discreetly slip away.

Later, during the trial scenes, the guilty parties attempt to shift blame onto the underdog or the mysterious figure known as "Kin San." However, the truth is eventually revealed when the magistrate, now properly attired and coiffured, removes his upper robes to reveal his own tattoos. Thus, it becomes clear that the seemingly low-ranked samurai was, in fact, the magistrate all along. This TV series draws inspiration from the rich traditions of Kabuki and Kodan storytelling.

 


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