The story of the 47 samurai is based on actual events, but since there are rules against performing a play about contemporary people, the Chushingura had to be rewritten. Instead of the early Edo period, the play takes place during the early Kamakura period. The key figure in the drama is Minamoto-no-Yoshitsune, the younger brother of the first Kamakura Shogun, Yoshiiye.

Although the setting has been changed and some of the events altered to match the historical period, nobody has any doubt what the play is about. Although the Shogun still is very powerful and the rules governing the citizens of Edo are very strict, the cultural expression of Edo has become very free. Both in drama and in art, people in this city exercise a great degree of freedom and personal expression.