Behind the Story of Blood and Tears — The Subscription List

Behind the Story of Blood and Tears — The Subscription List

August 21, 2018 Behind the Story Blog Blood and Tears History Japan 0

In episode 13, O-Bun entertains her friends with a scene from her favorite Kabuki play, The Subscription List (Kanjinchō).

One of the most popular plays in the kabuki repertory, the story highlights the smarts and loyalty of Musashibō Benkei, a retainer of the legendary military commander Minamoto Yoshitsune.

There are numerous tales of the mountain monk’s unflagging loyalty, the penultimate being when he and Yoshitsune were hopelessly trapped by enemy warriors. Benkei stationed himself at the entrance of the courtyard, while Yoshitsune prepared to commit suicide in one of the inner rooms of the mansion. Throughout the long night, the enemy launched an endless barrage of arrows at the massive silhouette blocking their way, but Benkei refused to budge. The rising sun revealed Benkei still standing at his post, eyes wide open and glaring, body bristling with arrows, and stone-cold dead.

For a more detailed information about the play, including a video of the full performance, read this blog post.

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