The Ninpen Manmaru anime is 30 episodes, produced by Shin-ei Video, aired by TV Asahi, and released on a series of 8 video tapes by Bandai. The first two tapes have 3 episodes each, and the last six have 4 episodes per tape. Each approximately half-hour episode is divided into two parts, usually each part a stand-alone story. There are a few two-part stories that encompass the entire show - the titles of these are typically labeled "zenpen" (the first part) and "kouhen" (the last part), just like many episodes of Detective Conan. It isn't until the last few episodes that the series becomes less episodic, with the word "tsuzuku" (to be continued) included at the end of some episodes. It was originally aired from summer 1997 to spring 1998.

origami shuriken Opening Theme (Bokutte Manmaru) - images, lyrics, and translation of the opening theme

The opening theme to Ninpen Manmaru is a cute, cheerful song that perfectly captures the feeling of most of the series. The animation is also appropriately cute, and manages to include most of the major characters without giving away any spoilers as to their identities or motives throughout the series. And they dance a cute little dance, too! Most people will walk away humming the chorus "ninpen penguin manmaru, henna ninja manmaru" even if they don't speak Japanese.

origami shuriken Ending Theme (Kagayakeru Hoshi) - images and lyrics of the ending theme

The ending theme animation is a trip. Seriously. Manmaru, Tanutaro, and Tsunejiro play in the clouds in a strange twilight world until Tsunejiro falls through a hole. Manmaru jumps on the back of a shooting star and chases after him, until they all land on the belly of a giant Nenga who throws up in a shower of pyrotechnics that finally turns into the head of Manmaru. The song itself is really very pretty, and though not as addictive as the opening theme I still typically find myself listening to it instead of fast-forwarding through it.

origami shuriken Episode Guide

email the webmaster: jcaliff@ev1.net