When I first told people I was moving to Japan, many of them immediately said, “Ah, you’re moving there because you like Japanese girls, aren’t you?” And while it’s true that after arriving in the country I did meet, start dating, and am now married to one of the locals, my attraction to Japanese culture and history played a bigger part in my moving across the Pacific.

Of course, there’s no law that says your loves of history and beautiful women have to be mutually exclusive, which is why a new TV series is set to premier that features sexy models stripping off samurai armor to reveal their swimsuit-clothed bodies.

This month, television network Fuji TV will air the first episode of Yoroi Bijo (“Armor Beauty”). Each installment of the monthly series will focus on a different samurai of historical significance, honoring his achievements and displaying his armor.

So far, that could be the description for any number of historical programs, but what sets Yoroi Bijo apart is that instead of exhibiting the suits of armor on a display rack like at a museum, each is modeled by a gurabia, Japan’s class of models who specialize in posing in swimwear and other skimpy outfits.

The first episode will feature gurabia Shoko Takasaki wearing the armor of Date Masamune, the samurai who ruled the area around present-day Sendai during the 16th and 17th centuries.

Of course, these models generally appear wearing much more reveling attire, and Yoroi Bijo’s goal is to satisfy history buffs and gurabia fans alike. So while each guest star starts off wearing a full suit of armor, which can weigh up to 20 kilograms (44 pounds), she gradually takes it off, piece by piece, while reciting famous quotes from that episode’s samurai.

▼ Takasaki after peeling off Date’s lamellar and eyepatch


Yoroi Bijo is a monthly program, although principal photography seems to have already been completed for the first handful of episodes. In July, Yuka Kuramochi appears both in and out of the armor of Oda Nobunaga, the ruthless unifier largely responsible for bringing about an end to Japan’s feudal period.

▼ In order to gain an advantage over his rivals, Nobunaga was quick to adopt foreign military technology, such as this solid-construction breastplate.

▼ Kuramochi’s torso, however, is likely to be considerably more exposed by the end of the episode

In July, Kana Fujita prepares for battle in the armor of Sanada Yukimura, retainer to the Takeda clan and local hero of Nagano Prefecture’s Ueda district.

Finally, the last as-yet announced Armor Beauty will be Hitomi Yasueda, wearing the armor of Uesugi Kenshin, lord of the fief of Echigo (now Niigata Prefecture).

▼ Ready for battle!

▼ Ready for the beach!

Yoroi Bijo premiers Saturday, April 18 at 2:30 a.m. on Fuji TV.

Sources: Kai-You, Naver Matome via Anime News Network