Recca Hanabishi

Flame of Recca

is a manga series by Nobuyuki Anzai, which was adapted into an anime series spanning forty-two episodes by Studio Pierrot. The manga was originally serialized in Shōnen Sunday starting 18 October, 1995, with the last chapter published 18 April, 2002, and has been compiled into 33 tankōbon volumes by Shogakukan. Both the anime and manga were licensed for North American distribution in English by Viz Media. The series has also been adapted into two video games; Flame of Recca for the Game Boy Advance and Flame of Recca Final Burning for the Playstation 2.


Flame of Recca follows the story of a teenage boy named Recca Hanabishi, who is interested in ninja and claims to be one himself. He often gets into fights due to the fact that he made it publicly known that the person who manages to defeat him will earn his services as a loyal ninja. Despite this, he eventually pledges his loyalty and services as a ninja to Yanagi Sakoshita, a girl with the innate ability to heal any wound/injury, because of her kindess and compassion. Recca soon discovers that he possesses the innate ability to control/manipulate flames, and eventually learns that he is actually the son of the sixth generation leader of the Hokage, a ninja clan that was wiped out by Oda Nobunaga in the Tenshō period roughly 400 years before the series' present day (possibly in the 1990s).


Recca, the protagonist of the series, is a teenager obsessed with ninja and anything related to ninja. He declared that he would serve anyone who could defeat him in a fight as his/her loyal ninja. In truth, Recca was born the second son of Ouka, the leader of the Hokage ninja clan that existed over 400 years ago. Recca's older half-brother, Kurei, was supposed to be the heir to the leadership because he was the eldest and was born with the ability to control fire, but Recca also exhibited the same abilities as an infant, and is declared the true heir of the Hokage leadership. In an attempt to save him during the slaughter of the Hokage ninja clan, his mother (Kagerō) used a forbidden technique that opened a portal that would transport him into the future, where the Flame of Recca storyline begins.

Yanagi is a teenage girl gifted with the innate ability to heal any kind of physical injury, and Recca immediately offered to serve her as his loyal ninja after seeing her compassion when she healed a severely injured puppy in a local park (in the anime series, she heals Recca after a pile of metal pipes collapsed on top of him). She is the prime objective of the series' main antagonist, Kōran Mori, as he believes that her healing powers will help him attain eternal life.

Fūko, a tomboyish teenage girl, is Recca's childhood friend and has always aspired to defeat him in battle so that he would serve her as her ninja. She initially gets jealous and infuriated by the fact that Recca chose to become Yanagi's ninja just because he wanted to, and it is this jealousy is what ultimately makes her decide to accept the aid of Kagerō, who offers to lend her Fūjin (a powerful madōgu that controls wind) in order to enable her to defeat Recca. In actuality, Kagerō implanted a stone in the Fūjin that allowed her to brainwash Fūko, but Recca manages to defeat Fūko and destroy the sphere. Fūko ends up being friends with both Yanagi and Recca after the incident, and she also keeps the Fūjin and wields it throughout the rest of the series.

Domon is Recca's schoolmate who, like Fūko, has always wanted to defeat Recca. However, he is never able to do so, and ends up befriending and joining forces with Recca. Domon wields the Dosei no Wa ("The Ring of Saturn"), a madōgu which enhances his physical strength. Later in the series, he also wields the Kuchibashi-Ō ("Beak King"), a super-sharp snapping claw on an extendable chain, and the Tetsugan ("Iron Ball"), which transmutes his entire body into a living iron golem for brief periods.

Tokiya is a second year student at Nashikiri High School, and he wields the madōgu Ensui ("Dark Water"), a sword that utilizes water to create it blade and is capable of creating and controlling all three states of water (liquid, solid and gas). Tokiya wanted to take Yanagi from Recca because she looks exactly like his sister, Mifuyu Mikagami, who was murdered in front of his eyes when he was young. He uses the Hyōmon Ken style which was developed specifically for the Ensui and the Hyōma En (a madōgu that also controls water, but focuses more on water in its solid form). Tokiya joins forces with Recca in attempting to rescue Yanagi from Kōran Mori's mansion, and he continues to be part of their team throughout the rest of the series.

Kaoru was once a member of Kurei's Uruha, but later, he becomes a member of Recca's team "Hokage" in the Ura Butō Satsujin. He wields the Kōgan Anki, a puzzle-like weapon that has five different forms. In the manga, the weapon also has a mysterious sixth form: 'Mu' (Nothing).

/ Kagerō

Kage Hōshi, whose real name is Kagerō, is the first antagonist of the series, and is later revealed to be Recca's mother. She possesses the 'Eikai Kyoku' ("Shadow Ball"), which allows her to teleport through shadows, show people the past, and perform acts of scrying. She performed the time travel (a technique which allows the user to travel or send another person to a different time) to save the infant Recca from being killed along with the rest of the Hokage clan. The technique, however curses the user with immortality. '.

Kurei is Recca's half brother who is four years older than him. He is also a flame master with the power of the phoenix, being able to capture the soul of a dead person in his flame. His character is tragic, the series portraying the fight between the two brothers as a culmination of the struggle for the leadership of the Hokage ninja clan 400 years ago. The most notable manifestation of his flame power is Kurenai (紅), his former lover whose soul he absorbed using his flame when she was killed by Kōran Mori. One of Kurenai's abilities is to hurl flame bolts which are hot enough to melt steel.



The Flame of Recca manga was originally serialized in Shōnen Sunday from October 18, 1995April 18, 2002, with a total of 329 chapters. The series was compiled into 33 tankōbon volumes and was published by Shogakukan. Shōnen Sunday also released the manga in 17 wideban volumes. Both the anime and manga were licensed for North American distribution in English by Viz Media and United Kingdom distribution in English by Gollancz Manga. The manga was also published in France by Editions Tonkam.

Viz did not censor nudity in their publications of the manga, but starting from volume 20, the female characters' nipples have been removed. Additionally, the manga series used to be published every other month, but Viz has begun to release the manga quarterly, starting with volume 25.


Flame of Recca was adapted into an anime series by Studio Pierrot, and aired from 19 July 1997 to 10 July 1998 on Fuji Television. The 42-episode series covers around volumes 1-16 of the manga. There are several notable differences between the anime and manga, such as the character design (e.g. Fūko has red-violet hair in the anime, but has brown hair in the manga) and in the storyline itself (e.g. In the anime, Yanagi's healing powers are first revealed when she heals Recca after he gets injured while protecting her and a child from being crushed under metal pipes, but in the manga, Yanagi heals Recca when he gets injured while protecting her from a group of male students who were forcing her to go with them).


  • Original Manga by: Nobuyuki Anzai
  • Producers: Ken Hagino and Madoka Takiyama
  • Director: Noriyuki Abe
  • Script Writer: Hiroshi Hashimoto
  • Story Editor: Hiroshi Hashimoto
  • Episode Director: Noriyuki Abe
  • Planning: Kenji Shimizu and Yuji Nunokawa
  • Art Director: Shigenori Takada
  • Art Design: Yuji Ikeda
  • Character Design: Atsushi Wakabayashi and Mari Kitayama
  • Music: Yusuke Honma
  • Director of Photography: Harutoshi Miyagawa
  • Key Animation: Kisei Yamada
  • Sound Effects: Yasufumi Yoda

Theme songs

All the anime's theme songs have been released in separate singles, and

  • Opening theme: "Nanka Shiawase"; なんか幸せ (A kind of happiness) by The Oystars
  • Ending themes:
  • Episodes 1-32: "Love is Changing" by Hikaru Nishida; music by Toshinobu Kubota
  • Episodes 33-42: "Zutto Kimi no Soba de" ずっと君の傍で (Always beside you) by Yuki Masuda

Though "Zutto Kimi no Soba de" was used as the series' ending theme and was released in a single, the song was not released in any of the official soundtracks.

Original soundtracks

Flame of Recca Original Soundtrack Vol. 1

The first Flame of Recca soundtrack was released on December 6, 1997, and features background music used in the series (composed by Yusuke Honma) as well as the series' opening song and first closing song.

Track Japanese Title Transcription/Translation Time
1 なんか幸せ (オープニング・テーマ) Nanka Shiawase (OPENING THEME) / A Kind of Happiness (Opening Theme) 4:01
2 烈火 - 炎の如く Recca - Honō No Gotoku / Recca - Like Flame 2:29
3 炎の忍 Honō No Shinobi / Shinobi of Flame 2:01
4 風子風塵 Fūko Fūjin 2:19
5 水の劍 Mizu No Kenshi / Swordsman of Water 2:09
6 姫が我が家にやってきた Hime Ga Wagaya Ni Yattekita / Princess Came to Our House 1:44
7 夢の記憶 Yume No Kioku / Memory of a Dream 1:53
8 忍者花菱 Ninja Hanabishi 2:02
9 紅麗の父 Kurei No Chichi / Kurei's Father 2:08
10 金の少年 Kin No Shōnen / Golden Boy 1:16
11 潜入 Sennyū / Infiltration 1:16
12 火影 Hokage 2:38
13 烈火劣勢 Recca Ressei / Recca Outnumbered 2:12
14 欲望 Yokubō / Desire 2:22
15 裏武闘殺陣 Ura Butō Satsujin 1:58
16 武祭初陣 Busai Shojin / 1:08
17 1:48
18 敵.或いは.味方 Kataki - Arui Wa - Mikata / Enemy or Friend 1:32
19 不狂和音 Fukyō Waon 2:08
20 八竜対決 Hachi Ryū Taiketsu / Eight Dragon Confrontation 1:47
21 宴の終わり Utage No Owari / End of the Party 1:52
22 忍と姫君 Shinobi to Himegimi / Shinobi and Princess 1:51
23 終演 Shūen / The End 3:33
24 Love is Changing (エンディングテーマ) Love is Changing (Ending Theme) 4:19
Flame of Recca Original Soundtrack Vol. 2

The second Flame of Recca soundtrack was released on May 4, 1998. It includes more background music used in the series along with a special CD drama that features the series' main characters (Recca, Yanagi, Fuuko, Domon, Mikagami, and Koganei) as well as the creator of the series, Nobuyuki Anzai.

Track Japanese Title Transcription/Translation Time
1  序 Jo / Beginning 0:45
2 狂風波浪注意報 Kyōfū Harōchūihō / Warning of Crazy Wind and Waves 2:44
3 狂鬼~魔元紗 Kyō Oni ~ Magensha / Crazed Ogre - Magensha 6:04
4 治癒の少女 Chiyu no Shōjo / A Girl of Healing 3:15
5 紅麗 Kurei 4:35
6 魔魅降臨 Mami Kōrin / The Deceiving Spirit's Advent 3:46
7 霧と風 Kiri to Kaze / Fog and Wind 2:16
8 刻まれた力 Kizamareta Chikara / The Power That Was Cut 2:32
9 狂幻師 Kyō Genshi / Crazed Illusionist 3:54
10 潜入II Sennyuu II / Infiltration 2 2:46
11 救出 Kyūshutsu / Rescue 3:21
12 COUNT DOWN 3:01
13 優しさ包まれた (それぞれの夜) Yasashisa Ni Tsutsumareta (Sorezore No Yoru) / Be Enveloped in Gentleness (Everybody's Night) 4:47
14 死のない女...影法師 Shi No Nai Onna - Kage Hōshi / The Woman Without Death - Kage Hōshi 4:11
15 風と想いと Kaze To Omoi To / Wind and Thought 1:33
16 「烈火の炎」 スペシャルCDドラマ: 火影大討論会 強いのは誰だ?! Recca no Honō SPECIAL CD DRAMA: Daitōron Kai Tsuyoi No Wa Dareda?! / Flame of Recca Special CD Drama: The Great Debate, "Who is the Strongest?!" 20:42

Video games

Flame of Recca has been adapted into two games to date; Flame of Recca for the Game Boy Advance, and Flame of Recca FINAL BURNING for the Playstation 2. The storylines in both games are based on the last five volumes of the Flame of Recca manga, and both have character designs more similar to the character designs in the manga than in the anime series.

Flame of Recca - The Game -

Flame of Recca - The Game - is a fighting game released by Konami on 20 December 2001 for the Game Boy Advance.
In this game, the player selects a character and presses certain button in order to make them move, attack, dodge, and perform special moves. Apart from having an HP bar, the selected character a power bar which increases when the character deals damage and decreases when the character performs a special move. Each character has his/her own set of special moves that do greater damage than normal attacks, and one super move that deals a significant amount of damage.
Playable Characters

  • Recca Hanabishi
  • Fūko Kirisawa
  • Tokiya Mikagami
  • Domon Ishijima
  • Kaoru Koganei
  • Kurei
  • Renge
  • Hiruko
  • Kadotsu

Flame of Recca Final Burning

Flame of Recca: Final Burning is a adventure/fighting game released by Konami on 10 June 2004 for the Playstation 2. A limited number of soundtrack CDs and sets of four bookmarks with character illustrations by Nobuyuki Anzai were given out along with the game CD. The game's graphics and FMVs are done in 2D animation.

The game utilizes a split-screen format wherein players must press different button combinations to make their selected character perform specific moves. Certain cutscenes require the player to determine what the selected character will do next through choosing from a given set of options. An example of this would be when the player is required to choose if Koganei will dodge or stay put when the building he is staying in starts to collapse.
Playable Characters

  • Recca Hanabishi
  • Fūko Kirisawa
  • Tokiya Mikagami
  • Domon Ishijima
  • Kaoru Koganei
  • Kurei
  • Hiruko
  • Zombie
  • Z
  • Karame
  • Kamui
  • Joker
  • Shiguma
  • Gaō
  • Gasekiō
  • Kōran Mori
  • Tendō Jigoku
  • Aoi
  • Miki and Aki
  • Mikuru
  • Meguri Kyōza
  • Pochi
  • Raiha
  • Mokuren


See also

External links

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