This print depicts a scene from the Kabuki drama Hirakana Seisuiki. Kunisada emphasized the Kabuki actor’s intense facial expression known as a cross-eyed mie pose. In Kabuki performances, an actor will freeze his pose at climactic moments of the play in order to create a unique form of theatrical tension. Similarly, Kunisada’s image of the warrior Higuchi no Jiro Kanemitsu conveys the sense of tension and passion that spectators of the play would have experienced firsthand.