When talking about the oldest anime, many fans might assume that it is a series like A piece or Pokemon. After all, each of them has over 1,000 episodes, which puts even more The simpsons to shame. However, a much lesser-known anime holds the title; in fact, it’s not even close.
The oldest anime is actually Sazae-sanwhich has probably escaped the notice of most North American fans, despite the show having been on the air for over five decades, and counting.
The oldest anime series is Sazae-san
Sazae-san began in April 1946 as a four-panel comic strip (yonkoma) by pioneering female mangaka Machiko Hasegawa. He got his start in his local newspaper, Fukunichi Shinbunbefore being taken over three years later by Asahi Shinbunwhere it continued until 1974. The yonkoma ran for about 6,500 strips.
The series was adapted as an anime series starting in 1969 and has aired on Japanese television ever since. The anime airs three eight-minute episodes each week, which contributes to its staggering episode count. Currently, Sazae-san recorded 7,881 episodes, but this number continues to increase.
Not only is Sazae-san the oldest anime, but it is also the longest running anime series of all time. Period. This is a feat recognized in 2013 by Guinness World Records. It’s a feat that scripted TV is unlikely to top anytime soon.
What is Sazae-san talking about?
Sazae-san follows the daily life of Sazae Fugata, a housewife in her twenties, and her loving family: her husband, parents, son, younger siblings and a pet cat.
Sazae-san was meant to embody what Hasegawa-sensei hoped the traditional Japanese family would become after World War II. To that end, Sazae herself was more interested in horseback riding than what was expected of women of the time to attract a husband. When she finally married, she tended to rule her husband, which neighbors found unorthodox.
Sazae-san is also known for never aging its characters; even over the years in the series, the characters remain unchanged. Other anime series do it too, but as long as Sazae-san was on the air, it’s a little more noticeable. The trope, logic, and anime are all often referenced in Gintama to explain why his own characters never age under similar circumstances.
Sazae-san is a simple slice-of-life comedy, but its portrayal of Japanese life in its day has sparked nostalgia and garnered praise from Japanese audiences. It represents an antiquated but progressive point of view of a bygone era, before the social changes brought about by modern technology. As such, it has remained a highly regarded program.
What is the second longest running anime?
The second longest anime is Nintama Rantaro. Airing since 1993, the series has an impressive 2,321 episodes, and counting. It is also leagues ahead of A piece and Pokemonbut far behind At Sazae-san’s 7,881 almost insurmountable episodes.
The series follows the daily lives of Rantarō and his classmates as they learn to become ninjas. Yes naruto had there been more focus on the titular character’s Ninja Academy days, it might have looked like this. Sure, Nintama Rantaro is aimed at small children, so the series will never get as dark as naruto Is.
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