When Shogun Came to America
I was 14 years old when Shogun first aired here in the United States. As I remember that week – everybody was enthralled by it. It was the talk of the town, at least in my area of the world. Because of the way my birthday falls, I was nearly a whole year older than the kids I grew up with in school. November babies often had to wait for the next year before we were allowed to start in the school system – even though we missed our age mates by only about a month.
So I was in the 8th grade during that week – middle school. Every day while it aired, kids discussed what had occurred the night before. Toward the end of the series, I remember sitting behind three of my female classmates in homeroom when the subject of the best character in the series came up.
They were going on about Blackthorne – which I guess is not terribly surprising. I spoke up and said that I thought Omi san (played by Yuki Meguro) was the best character. As I remember my thoughts back then, I was fascinated with the background story of Omi san and Kiku san. I was quite frustrated that there was so little screen time given to that plotline.
At any rate, at some point that morning I expressed my thoughts to my classmates that Omi san was the strongest character. I think the conversation went roughly like this:
Classmates 1, 2 and 3: Blah, blah, blah John Blackthorne!!!
Me: Omi san was better.
Classmate 1: John Blackthorne is the strongest. He is the hero!
Classmate 2: He’s good looking and he is very brave.
Classmate 1: He’s the hero! And Mariko falls in love with him!
Classmate 3: He’s the best…
Me: Omi san is the strongest, because he made John Blackthorne lay on the ground while he pissed on his back. Omi san pissed on John Blackthorne and Blackthorne had to lay there and take it.
If I remember this correctly at all – the conversation ended that day and it was never discussed again.
This is the only YouTube video I’ve been able to find that features Omi san: