The character Oichi, created by Shochiku studios as a response to the hugely successful Zatoichi series, is a blind swordswoman. The main difference, apart from being a female, was that her weakness is a stereotyped female tendency to be emotional. The character was played by Yōko Matsuyama who earlier performed in Crimson Bat (紅蝙蝠 Kurenai Kawahori?) (1958). Although this film was unrelated to the Oichi character, the producers chose to promote the series under the title Crimson Bat for international viewers. Ironically, an official female variation of Zatoichi was released decades later, and entitled Ichi.
List of films
- Crimson Bat: The Blind Swordsman (めくらのお市物語 真っ赤な流れ鳥 Mekura no oichi monogatari: Makkana nagaradori?) (1969) (IMDB link)
- Trapped, the Crimson Bat/The Blind Swordswoman: Hellish Skin (めくらのお市 地獄肌 Mekurano no Oichi jigokuhada?) (1969) (IMDB link)
- Watch Out, Crimson Bat! (めくらのお市 みだれ笠 Mekurano no Oichi midaregasa?) (1969) (IMDB link)
- Crimson Bat - Oichi: Wanted, Dead or Alive (めくらのお市 命貰います Mekurano no Oichi inochi moraimasu?) (1970) (IMDB link)
In 1971 Nippon TV ran a Crimson Bat (めくらのお市物語 Mekura no oichi monogatari?) TV series also starring Yoko Matsuyama with Hiroshi Fujioka. This ran for 25 episodes from April 12, 1971 to September 27 1971.
- "The Crimson Bat Series". Girls With Guns.
- Silver, Alain. The Samurai Film. Woodstock, NY: The Overlook Press, 1977.
- The Crimson Bat Series on Girls With Guns