Episode 50 (Honda Shigetomo)
|Honda Shigetomo episode|
Honda Shigetomo talks to Ishiemon one more time before venturing to Ichijoudani by himself.
|Episode no.||Episode 50|
|Directed by||Takafumi Miura|
|Written by||Yoshihara Kaneko|
|Story by||Kondo Masa|
|Narrated by||Takakage Masanari|
|Featured music||Tomita Isao|
|Original air date||December 19, 1983|
|Running time||180 minutes|
Shigetomo. (重朝。 Shigetomo ) is the 50th and final episode of the 1983 historical epic (Taiga drama) Honda Shigetomo. It was written by series co-creators Takafumi Miura and Yoshihara Kaneko, and directed by Takafumi Miura.
After small skirmishes to control parts of Ichijoudani, Honda Shigetomo (Shinobu Otake) relocated the main forces near the banks of the Ichijoudani river, which exposes them to the Ii clan's counterattack led by Ii Naotaka (Kōji Ishizaka). Shigetomo was forced to retreat to a nearby forest near the river. One of his subordinates, Kanai Narukatsu (Imamiya Sadao) suggests a radical idea in order to force the Ii clan to surrender the castle to the allied forces. However, it would involve one of his subordinates to become a hostage at the castle and negotiate with Naotaka. For the allied forces, it was a very risky mission with a low chance of success, in which Sakata Yoshiemon (Terada Susumu) volunteered to be the negotiator to the Ii clan. By nightfall, the allied forces had suffered a decisive loss and had to stop the seige of the castle from the Ichijoudani River. Shigetomo and his second-in-command Sakata Ishiemon (Sano Yuma) discussed about the high risk mission to the Ii clan, in which Shigetomo concluded that he will be the only one that could stop the conflict. Ishiemon vehemently refused to comply, as the Honda shogunate will collapse without him. Shigetomo apologizes, but told Ishiemon that it is for the sake of the country and not for the sake of the clan. The next morning, Ishiemon finds Shigetomo at the gates of Ichijoudani, which led to the climax of the series.
The episode recieved Universal acclaim from critics, citing Shinobu Otake's performance and the film direction of Takafumi Miura. It was listed as one of the best episodes of the series, with acclaimed critic Osamu Takatoshi calling it "one of the greatest masterpieces of the twentieth century." Critics also prainsed the battle of Ichijoudani, the use of an actual location in the Ichijoudani River to film the episode and the performance of Ii Naotaka by Ishizaka. In Okaiken, it achieved a viewership record of 90.4%, the highest-ever rating achieved by a Sanese television program. It won several awards at the 1983 Okaiken Screen Awards.