Tanigaki Is Loyal to a Fault
- Episodes: 12
- Genre: Action, Historical, Adventure, Seinen
- Airing Date: October 2018 - December 2018
- Studio: Geno Studio
Golden Kamuy Preview (No Spoilers)
Golden Kamuy tells us the story of an adventure in Hokkaido. There is a rumor that a fortune in gold, stolen from the native people of Japan, the Ainu, lies hidden somewhere there. The map however, is tricky. It has been tattooed on the bodies of countless criminals in such a way that you need all of them in order to read it. Saichi Sugimoto is one such man who has arrived in the developing land following the Russo-Japanese war. A soldier himself, it isn’t long before nature almost takes him out. He is saved by a girl named Asirpa, a young Ainu girl who is skilled both linguistically and physically. After hearing her story, Sugimoto decides to help her recover the lost gold. Nothing is simple though as a group of criminals moves in the shadows to try and take it for themselves, while a third group, the 7th division of the Japanese army, is operating extrajudicially to try and get the gold for themselves. Takigani is a member of this unit led by the deranged Tsurumi.
Genjirou Tanigaki Highlights (Spoilers Beyond This Point)
1. Like we said, he’s loyal to a fault...
Tanigaki has this quality about him that just makes him loyal to a fault. Now, that is not to say that he is not smart enough to know to bow out when necessary, but he keeps his wits about him and generally, wherever he is, he remains loyal. When he is a part of the 7th actively, he is extremely loyal to Tsurumi, feeding him information constantly. When he changes his mind and lives for himself, he stays behind in Asirpa’s village with Huci and Cikapasi, helping them live. He still feigns that he is loyal to the 7th to their faces, but once they are gone, he reverts back to his old ways. He is also incredibly loyal even when he leaves with Inkarmat and Cikapasi to search for everyone. He still thinks about getting back to help Huci in order to stop her from dying.
2. His Backstory
Tanigaki’s backstory is more or less what inspired this article. It’s incredibly sad and deals with his sister going to live with his new bride. Unbeknownst to him, his sister falls ill and dies of a disease that would have alienated his whole family in their hometown of Ani. When the groom, his friend, burns their house down with her inside of it, he leaves in search of this man. After drifting, he hears rumors that a man just like the groom is in Hokkaido. Years later, in a bitter battle, he sees a man mortally wounded. Tanigaki realizes that this is the same person, and moves to kill him since no one would know. When Tanigaki learns the truth, he is crushed. His revenge has moved him so far, but realizing that his friend was not the monster he thought, he forgives him as the man dies. Crushing, but so wonderfully written.
3. Bridge Between Cultures
A lot of Japan remains a mystery to Tokyoites and it’s why Golden Kamuy makes such a good anime. Genjirou speaks an interesting dialect from Akita as well as being from Ani, which is one culture, he is Japanese military in another, and finally, he blends in well with the Ainu culture while living with Huci. He has all sorts of skills from each of his experiences, and blends them in well. He feeds his mad superior Tsurumi with his Ani Village’s Kanemochi and is well-received. He also tries to keep the Ainu village as safe as possible constantly.
Tanigaki is quite smart. Then again, living in three very distinct cultures allows him to pull from various skill sets honed in each. When the Ainu village is under attack, he learns of a way to get around thing the gunfire and out. The same is true for when he survives during the war as well as his cooking skills with the kanemochi. Not to mention too, he also is a man of few words allowing others to lay their thoughts, suspicions, and intentions bare, before he says anything. This gives him the upper hand.
5. He’s a man of few words, but also an excellent cook!
We already mentioned it, but his cooking skills are par-none. Due to being a Matagi, he knows survivalism and uses it to his advantage. Sure, it might not be the same in Hokkaido where this anime is set, but it does allow for him to get by often. His walnut kanemochi as well as the miso version are always well liked, and he knows to bring them with him at all times in case food or rations run out. We venture to speculate that this may not be the final time that we see him ration out his kanemochi amongst his allies.
Genjirou Tanigaki is an excellent, stoic, and talented character in the Golden Kamuy universe. From his rugged exterior, to his sharp mind, to his cooking skills, there is so much to like. Plus, with a backstory like his, he needs to be protected. That is why we love him so much. What are your thoughts on this interestingly exciting and informative series? Who are your favorite characters from it? Will he be all right with Inkarmat near him? We will have to see. Till next time!