Naruto Hichou


The Naruto Secret

Historical Drama

In 1926, the Osaka Mainichi Shinbun published a sequel novel by Eiji Yoshikawa (1892-1962), who founded his worldwide fame ten years later with his novel "Miymoto Musashi". It is an adventure novel set mainly in 1766.
The novel has already been filmed several times, also as a 44-part series for television. The latest film adaptation is from 2018. It consists of 10 episodes of 43 minutes each and has already been shown twice on the channel BS-Jidaigeki (BS時代劇) of NHK. The description of the plot here is based on this script.
Naruto Hichou (also known as Naruto Hichō) is a secret document that has been passed on for generations in the Hachisuka family on the island of Awa (now Tsukushima). It allegedly includes a blood oath to overthrow the shogunate government Naruto is the imposing tidal vortex in the sea between Awaji-shima and today's Tokushima.


In 1766, Norizuki Gennojō, the son of a Hatamoto, is sent by Kyonosuke Matsudaira from Edo to the island of Awa to obtain a secret document from there, the Naruto Hichou, which endangered the state. The film describes the adventures and backgrounds of this undertaking.
The order comes from the former Kyoto Shoshidai Matsudaira Kyonosuke. Also involved is the former court nobleman Takeya Sanmikyō, who lives in exile at Awa after the Hōreki incident in 1758.
The events shown in the last episode took place in January 1767.


from episode 1

Otsuna fights back

from episode 1

Gennojō's fighting

from episode 1

Movie Data

English title: The Naruto Secret
Original title: 鳴門 秘帖 Naruto Hichou
Published: 2018
Length: 10 x 43 minutes

Director: Shinichi Nishitani, Nobuyuki Sakai
Script: Kenichi Onishi, Eiji Yoshikawa

Kōji Yamamoto - Norizuki Gennojō
Nono Sumika - Mikaeri Otsuna
Hayami Akari - Kōga Chie
Shinji Takeda - Ojuuya Magobei
Yoshihiko Hakamada - Tobikawa Shūma
Kenjirō Nashimoto - Kommissar Mankichi
Dai Watanabe - Tendō Ikkaku
Katsuo Nakamura - Kōga Yoami
Rena Takeda - Oyone
Bokuzō Masana - Hiraga Gennai
Seiji Matsuyama - Hayashi Keinosuke
Eisuke Sasai - Takeya Sanmikyō
Ryō Tamura - Takagi Ryōjiken
Hisako Manda - Okura
Hiroko Nakashima - Okichi
Yūki Tsujimoto - Mori Keinosuke
Ryū Kanō - Kyōnosuke Matsudaira
Kazuyuki Aijima - Shigeki Hachisuka
Masayuki Shionoya - Norizuki Ichigaku


Persons acting

Norizuki Gennojō
is a young samurai who is sent on a dangerous mission. He is supposed to find and obtain a secret document, the Naruto Hichou (Hichou = secret document). It is located in Awa, which is located from Osaka beyond the Naruto Vortex.
Norizuki Ichigaku
is the father of Gennojō, a high-ranking direct retainer (Hatamoto) and high official of the shogun, with an income of 7,000 koku.
Kōga Chie
is the daughter of a family friend and a childhood companion of Gennojō. She is promised to Gennojō and languishes after him.
Kōga Yaomi
is the father of Chie and head of the Kōga family. He is an official spy of the shogun and runs a ninja company. He was sent 10 years ago in search of the Naruto Hichou and has been missing ever since. He is already unusually old in the film.
Mikaeri Otsuna
is a pickpocket in Edo. Later it comes to light that she has connections to Yaomi and Chie. She accompanies Gennojō on his journey and is madly in love with him. Mikaeri is her nickname. This comes from the Mikaeri willow, a tree just outside the Yoshiwara entertainment district in Edo, where the men turned around again after their lust and looked at the neighborhood (mikaeri = turn the gaze). Otsuna lives near this tree. Her weapon is a small pistol.
Boss Mankichi
is a police commissioner in Edo. Together with Otsuna, he tails Gennojō. His weapons are the jitte (baton) and a kind of lasso with which he intervenes at a distance.
Ojūya Magobei
is a samurai from Awa who lives in Edo by street robbery. He always wears a hood because he has an ominous injury that he doesn't want to show. He wants to have Otsuna and constantly tries to kill Gennojō.
Tobikawa Shūma
is the top disciple in Yaomi's ninja company. Since his boss went missing, he has been working on Chie and wants to take over the family.
Tendō Ikkaku
is a samurai from Awa who was sent as a killer against Gennojo.
is a young girl from a known family in Osaka. She suffers from tuberculosis and is desperately in love with Gennojō.
Hiraga Gennai
was a herbalist and physician (1728-1780). He practiced electrotherapy with a so-called elekiter, a device to produce static electricity. He was a dazzling personality and appears in many Anime and Jidaigeki movies.
Takeya Sanmikyō
is a courtier who lives in exile at the court of Awa because of rebellion against the government. In the film, he's a ridiculously quirky person. The historical model Takenouchi Shikibu is said to have been a very intelligent person.
Kyōnosuke Matsudaira
is the former Kyoto Shoshidai (Representative of the Shogun in Kyoto) and gave the order to Norizuki Gennojō.