Hiro Nakamura's katana

Hiro Nakamura is Heroes main character (If you are not watching Heroes, what are you waiting for!), he has a sword that belonged to someone called “Takezo Kensei”. The cool thing is “Takezo Kensei” is not a fiction character, he was a real samurai, in fact he is probably the most “famous” samurai ever. If I tell you that “Miyamoto Musashi” is his usual name you will probably know him, but “Takezo Kensei” is how he is called in Heroes. “Takezo” is an alternative reading of Musashi 武蔵, and “Kensei” is the highest rank a samurai can hold, only legendary samurais are considered “Kensei”. “Kensei” could be translated as “Heroe”.


He is the historical Miyamoto Musashi, known in Heroes fiction TV series as Takezo Kensei.

Miyamoto Musashi/Takezo Kensei fought at Sekigahara, one of the most important battles in Japanese history, he survived more than 60 duels “one vs one” during his 61 years of life, he created many fighting styles and he finished his days writing books. He is considered the best swordsman ever.

Spoilers warning! Spoilers warning!
Miyamoto Musashi appears many times in Heroes, in the museum when they are trying to steal a katana, when Hiro talks about Takezo Kensei, and we can even see the “real” Takezo Kensei at the second season’s beginning when Hiro travels back in time to 1671. Another interesting detail that future Hiro Nakamura has the same air style as Miyamoto Musashi .
Spoilers finished!



Miyamoto Musashi air style is very similar to future Hiro Nakamura.

The katana in the TV series is an invention, in the real history Miyamoto Musashi never had a favorite sword. In the katana from Heroes TV series there is a symbol (This symbol can be seen many times in many places). As Ando explains in one episode, the symbol can be created combining two Japanese characters: sai 才 (Great talent, genius), and yo 与(One of the meanings of this kanjis is “godsend”). If you put together these two kanji characters you obtain the symbol from Hiro’s katana that belonged to “Takezo Kensei”:

Are Hiro Nakamura and his father descendants from Miyamoto Musashi/Takezo Kensei? Are Heroes main characters Gods? Is Heroes a battle between Gods?

If you wanna learn more about the real Miyamoto Musashi, I recommend you: Musashi Miyamoto by Eiji Yoshikawa; which is the best book around there. Is huge but I’m sure you will enjoy every line if you are a fan of Japanese culture.

Images from: Akinokai y Heroes Wiki .

21 Comments
  • Jamaipanese

    May 29, 2007 at 9:55 am

    wow really interesting read. I am a huge Heroes fan and Hiro is my favourite character.

    thanks for the info on Takezo Kensei.

  • philip

    June 13, 2007 at 11:08 pm

    Good info – good of you to pick it up. I know Musashi well, but it didn’t click at first that Takezo was his original name. Then I didn’t know that about kensei, so I couldn’t put two and two together. Well done~

  • Adam

    June 28, 2007 at 4:27 pm

    Kensei means “sword saint”, I didn’t know it could be translated to “hero.”

  • Mike Maman

    September 21, 2007 at 8:20 pm

    Wow, how could I not see that Takezo was Musashi. Im in the process of reading the huge novel, and I remember reading about how his name was a change in characters to spell musahsi.

  • Dharmashaiva

    September 29, 2007 at 6:48 pm

    Possible Spoiler:

    Perhaps Hiro is the ‘real’ Kensei.

  • […] Miyamoto Musashi (1584? – 1645), is one of the most well know samurai ever. We already know him from Heroes, but let’s see more in detail who he was. […]

  • Kensei001

    October 20, 2007 at 10:29 pm

    I own and have read a copy of the book of the five rings otherwise known as “Go Rin No Sho”, and it states that Takezo Kensei adopted the name of his village and became known to this day as Miyamoto Musashi.

  • asswipebpy

    October 24, 2007 at 12:19 pm

    possible spoiler:

    maybe mohinder as the real cylar

  • asswipebpy

    October 24, 2007 at 12:19 pm

    or maybe cylar is the real kaito?

  • LEON CD

    November 4, 2007 at 2:19 pm

    NONONO ALL WRONG AND ITS SYLAR NOT CYLAR D**** HEAD

  • Kono

    November 30, 2007 at 9:25 am

    Thanks for the info on the Real Kensei, but please, your ending of the article is just bull (Are Hiro Nakamura and his father descendants from Miyamoto Musashi/Takezo Kensei? Are Heroes main characters Gods? Is Heroes a battle between Gods?), since season two reveals the answer to your first question, and even the first episode in the first season (and continuously throughout the series), claims it is the characters genes that has evolving (not that they are Gods), thus the answer to your second question, you should really consider removing those false rhetorical questions…

  • louis

    December 6, 2007 at 6:56 pm

    On the last episode, we see that hiros father is the real Kensai

  • Misato Katsuragi

    March 2, 2008 at 8:11 pm

    c’mon!!!!!! you need read some more!!!! the real name of miyamoto susashi, is takezo shinmen, not kensei… i recommend you, search de book musashi of Eiji yoshikawa… and will see the mystake…

    Fact: miyamoto musashi don’t use a one sword, your special tech is the two swords.

  • L.E.D. Miyamoto

    March 29, 2008 at 5:53 am

    Musashi’s Full Name and Meaning

    In the introduction to The Book of Five Rings, Musashi identifies himself as Shinmen Musashi no Kami Fujiwara no Genshin. Piecing out the different parts of his name and why he does not call himself Miyamoto, by which he is most widely known, takes a little explanation.

    As a child Musashi went by the name Ben No Suke. Upon becoming an adult (usually around age 13 at that time) he took the name Takezo, which he began to pronounce as Musashi later. The two names are different pronunciations of the same two Japanese kanji (symbols). The first kanji has the meaning of warrior and is the same one used in the words bushi and bushido, meaning warrior and Way of the warrior. The second kanji in Musashi’s name relates to a type of storehouse.

    Miyamoto is the town that Musashi came from and by which he was most well know. In stressing his samurai lineage, he would use the name Shinmen, which was the name of the Lord to which Musashi’s family was attached. The name Fujiwara also adds an touch of historical pedigree by relating back to one of the four main Fujiwara famlies, who were noble houses dating back to the eighth century. Finaly, the name Genshin is a Buddhist name that Musashi chose.

    The name “Musashi” was given to him after 3 years of solitude in Himeji Castle when captured and tricked by Takuan Soho a Buddist Priest whom chose the name nMusashi over Takezo as he became a Samuria only later to discover the 2 hand Swordsmanship.

  • Gladius_Dei

    April 3, 2008 at 9:27 pm

    Just out of curiousity, where did you see that Soho had any influence on Musashi?

  • LED

    April 16, 2008 at 8:02 pm

    “Just out of curiousity, where did you see that Soho had any influence on Musashi? ”

    It’s seen in many a places ebven Movies…Takuan was able to apply Zen principals to many activities. He was an accomplished gardener, painter, calligrapher, tea master, poet and author . He is also credited with inventing the yellow pickled radish called a takuan in his honor. 🙂

    http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&rls=com.microsoft:en-gb:IE-SearchBox&rlz=1I7GGIC&q=Takuan Soho + Miyamoto Musashi&btnG=Search

  • ash

    April 26, 2008 at 7:27 am

    nithing like his hair

  • Erin Poole

    November 12, 2008 at 6:51 pm

    82bliay4o3as0g8y

    武蔵

  • ndjhdjh

    December 2, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    IF you interesting for my last news in my blog see it!,

  • keeheritage

    January 26, 2009 at 10:58 am

    oh.. i’ve read the manga version of miyamoto musashi by Inoue Takehiko… That’s how i learn japanese history, by reading manga.. hahaha..

  • БинБильКрам

    July 15, 2009 at 9:24 am

    Да пошли вы тупые американцы!!!!!