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Jin

Jin (仁) is a manga by Murakami Motoka.

Minakata Jin is a brilliant brain surgeon in contemporary Tokyo. One day, after operating a patient with a freak brain tumor, he starts hearing strange voices, and all of a sudden he finds himself transported 140 years into the past. One minute he was in the hospital he works at, the next he's in a grove, while men are having a swordfight mere meters away. He soon figures out he is stranded at the end of the Tokugawa era, a few years before the beginning of the Meiji era.

Before long he casts aside philosophical questions about changing the course of history and whatnot; with a cholera epidemic in full swing, he applies his medical knowledge and fast-forwards the development of germ theory by several decades. As he becomes increasingly famous, he attracts the attention of various political factions and eventually takes sides.

A live action version, Jin, was broadcast on Japanese television in 2009, but ended shortly after Jin cured Nokaze of breast cancer. A second season, Jin 2, was broadcast in 2011.


This manga contains examples of:

  • Alternate History: For better or worse, Jin's involvement in the past has invariably altered the course of Japan's history.
  • Blade on a Stick: Saki's mother uses a naginata for self-defense.
  • Cat Smile: Seen on one occasion, a rare use of a contemporary graphic convention in a series that uses a classic/realist style.
  • Crowning Moment of Awesome: 19th century Edo as a whole during the cholera. Without panic or resignation they organize a quarantine, care for the sick, instantly understand Jin's explanations of what causes it and how to treat it without much superstitious awe or clinging to past ideas and then proceed to manufacture the needed medical tools en masse with only manual skills. They beat back an epidemic that scourged them many times with sheer comprehension and discipline and show themselves as anything but Medieval Morons.
  • Dream Sequence: Jin dreams that he gets to show 21st century Tokyo to Saki.
  • Fake-Out Make-Out: In order to evade hired assassins, Jin and Saki hide in a grove used as a make-out place, and in order to blend in, lock in embrace.
    • Amusingly, Jin and Saki are the only couple that's merely embracing -- and said assassins leave with their tails between their legs when they're mocked by the couples whose actual making out was interrupted Crowning Moment of Funny.
  • Fish Out of Temporal Water: Pre-Meiji Japanese society takes some getting used to.
  • Florence Nightingale Effect: The unspoken attraction between Jin and Saki gets ramped up a notch when Jin nurses a wounded Saki and gets to see her topless. Then it gets ramped up another notch when Jin comes down with cholera and has to be nursed by Saki, who sees of him much more than was proper for a girl of her upbringing.
  • Furo Scene: Played entirely for non-comedic effect in Volume 9.
  • Giving Radio to the Romans
  • High Class Call Girl: Nokaze.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Saki.
  • Intimate Healing: See above.
  • Jidai Geki
  • Live Action Adaptation: See here.
  • Platonic Prostitution: His friend hires a prostitute on Jin's behalf, but the latter is too passed out from drink to even wake up when she enters his bed. The next morning, she returns the money.
  • Samurai: Their age is ending... or is it?
  • Squick: Open-brain surgery -- with carpenter tools. And a bursting cerebral edema. Also, it's hard to preserve much dignity when suffering from cholera and a cholera epidemic is no fun for anyone.
  • Temporal Mutability: Jin doesn't long agonize about the consequences of changing the past. He sets to apply his expertise in modern medicine to improve people's lives, and alters Japanese history in the process.
  • Trapped in the Past
  • Yamato Nadeshiko: Jin develops a relationship with Saki, the traditionally-educated daughter of a samurai family.
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