I am not someone who takes that much sitting around doing nothing with grace. So when I was once again faced with another day of being couch-bound, I was feeling at a loss as to what to do. I've just about cleared the TiVo, I've read more books in the past week than I have in the past year, and there is only so much picture sorting I can do before I start losing it. So I resigned myself to a day of catching up on anime.
Remembering that I had seshat's Mirage of Blaze, I decided to give it a go. And I gotta say, if you have to spend the day sitting at home sick, there are worse ways than watching a series that Aestheticism described as "an historical supernatural action adventure fantasy romance".
The plot revovles around reincarnated warriors from Japan's Warring States period having mystical battles in a variety of tourist spots. (Of the places that appear in the series, there is only one -- Hakone -- that I have never been to.) It is filled with the standard Sandpanther crack -- history; angsty, pretty, pretty bishounen; places I have actually been to; themes of loyalty and friendship and the loss of innocence; past lives and lost memories; and swords and sorcery (though, I must whine, not enough of swords... the one time a sword did show up, it was pretty cool-looking, though.)
That said, it may not be everyone's cup of tea. I knew walking in it has a large section in all the fashionable doujinshi stores, and I suspected that it cannonically ventured into the yaoi realm. (It does; let's just say that the classic "faithfull follower" motif is taken to the logical fangirl conclusion.) Keeping everyone straight (if you will pardon the pun) was a little difficult, as the character designs were all fairly similar and the names frequently resembled one another closely. And a solid grounding in Warring States period history went a long way to adding an understanding of the character interactions and keeping track of who was who. Oh yeah, and they leave a large (and somewhat annoying) plot thread dangling.
All in all, I'd say if you're willing to deal with a (very) little homosexuality and a LOT of angst, give it a go. And that's not just the cold talking. I think.
Now I wanna track down the novels. I'm trying not to be daunted that there are well over thirty of them.