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Honjō Kamatari was a member of the Juppongatana, an organization under Shishio Makoto's orders.


Kamatari wears a light green kimono with short sleeves and a dark blue obi, as well as zori (traditional sandals worn by both men and women, similar in design to flip-flops) with white tabi (ankle-high, divided-toe socks). This attire makes him look like a thin young woman with short blue/dark purple hair.


A cross-dressing man, Kamatari is a member of the Juppongatana and takes pride in his "womanly" status (at one point reprimanding Kariwa Henya for throwing bombs at him since it could hurt his skin), to the degree that he throws Makimachi Misao off completely when Kamatari reveals that he is, in fact, a man.

He also is somewhat flirtatious, flirting with Yahiko whom he called cute and stating that he could be like him with practice. He is a happy easy going young man, often smiling and fawning over Shishio, but in battle, he becomes more serious, talking with a deeper harsher tone and utilizing his strength to the fullest. Honjō is very prideful both about his abilities and skills. He refers to himself as serious all the time, although this, in conjunction with his cross-dressing, is a pretext to hide his unrequited love for Shishio.


  • Shishio Makoto: Kamatari loves Shishio Makoto deeply, but knows that he will never be loved like his rival Komagata Yumi. Kamatari ensures he follows Shishio's orders to the end while putting all of his love and care into these orders. His loyalty is so extreme that he attempted suicide when he lost to Kaoru and Misao, since he didn't want to face Shishio afterwards.
  • Komagata Yumi: Kamatari has a rivalry with Yumi over who would win Shishio's love, though it would seem that deep down, Kamatari understands that he can never compete with Yumi.
  • Seta Sōjirō: Kamatari sees Sōjirō as a rival for being Shishio's right hand man. Kamatari knows he will never become as talented as Sōjirō, who serves as Shishio's most trusted warrior.


Kamatari uses a very heavy scythe-like weapon, a reaper, with a chain ball on the end of the weapon; this is called Ogama. Kaoru estimated that the weapon weighed at least 50 Kan (30 kilograms or 78 pounds). He practices Honjō-ryū, his own style of martial arts. Three of his special techniques are seen in the series, two of which are named after Benten, the only female of the Buddhist Seven Lucky Gods:

  • Midare Benten (Disheveled Benten) is when the scythe is whipped over his head, and the chain forms a sphere, therefore creating both an offensive and defensive attack.
  • Benten Mawashi (Unwrapping Benten) makes use of his broken scythe by twirling the blade and chain rapidly like the blade of a helicopter.
  • The third was unnamed but is an offensive move used by swinging the iron ball at the end into the opponent if the scythe can not be used.


Kamatari appears as one of the members of the Juppongatana, in service of Shishio Makoto.

Kyoto Arc

Kamatari, as well as several other members of the Juppongatana, is summoned at Shishio's hideout at Mount Hiei. In there, he is part of the group who are assigned to go to the Aoiya to kill everyone in there.

When Henya, Iwanbō and Kamatari arrive at the Aoiya, Kamatari fights against both Kamiya Kaoru and Makimachi Misao. He is superior at first, injuring Kaoru and Misao, even breaking some of Misao's ribs with his Midare Benten attack. Later, Kaoru defeats Kamatari with her Tsuka no Gedan: Hiza Hishigi after Misao helps to destroy his weapon with her kunai. When he realises he has lost, Kamatari tries to commit suicide with a pin, but Misao knocks him unconscious preventing him from driving it into his neck.

As Kamatari recovers from his injuries, Sawagejō Chō convinces Kamatari that Shishio wanted for Kamatari to live so that the world would know of the work done by Shishio's faction; Chō in fact made up the story so that Kamatari would not kill himself. Kamatari becomes a spy afterwards for the Meiji government.

Development and Reception

There were a lot of options to create the character Kamatari. It all started with a play on words: in Japanese, okama is slang for homosexual and scythe is kama. Then, the character's image. First, the character was supposed to be male-appearing on the surface, but would act like a woman or the exact opposite, erotic and seductive, but manly on the inside. Watsuki also has stated that he credits Oda Eiichiro (creator of One Piece) for Kamatari's creation. 

The visual model for the face is Ikari Yui from Evangelion, with only some small changes, like the hair and forehead. The body was influenced by Hsien-ko (Rei-Rei) from Darkstalkers (Vampire Hunter).

In Live Action film

Honjō Kamatari is portrayed by Hiroko Yashiki in the 2014 live action movies Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno and also Rurouni Kenshin: The Legend Ends.


We can find Kamatari:

  • Episodes: 44, 45, 48, 49, 51, 52, 54 and 61
  • Volumes: 15 and 17


  • Kamatari is a victim of the strongest piece of censorship in the anime adapation: in the original manga, he lifts his kimono to reveal a huge penis to Yahiko and Misao (even though it is pixelated in the manga to comply with Japanese censorship laws). That scene was not adapted in the anime.