Rather than emphasizing the mysterious and frightening power of the god of thunder, O_tsu-e artists humorously had him fall victim to the same misfortunes that plague human beings. Here he has accidentially dropped his drum into the ocean. Leaning precariously out of the ominous clouds, he frantically fishes for it with a heavy black hook.
This theme was probably first painted in the early 18th century. During the 19th century, when talismanic powers became associated with certain O_tsu-e, images of the god of thunder were hung in homes as protection against lightening.