Hakushon Daimaō Anime Celebrates 50th Anniversary With New Character
posted on by Karen Ressler
Tatsunoko unveiled a new character for its Hakushon Daimaō (The Genie Family) anime franchise in December. The character, Pūta-kun, commemorates the anime's 50th anniversary.
Pūta-kun is the son of Hakushon ("Hasshoo" in Tatsunoko's official English descriptions) and younger brother of Akubi-chan ("Ya-ahn"). He hates to lose and sees his older sister as a rival.
Tatsunoko debuted a YouTube channel starring Hakushon and Akubi-chan as live-action mascot suit characters in October. The fictional story of the channel is that Hakushon has 100 million yen in debt and has begun working as a YouTuber to pay it off.
Pūta-kun debuted on the channel as a mascot character in mid-December.
Tatsunoko describes the original series:
An old jar which has found its way to modern residential neighborhood just happens to be the home of three Arabian genies. There's Hasshoo, the husband; Eppah, his wife; and their little daughter, Ya-ahn. They can only emerge from the jar if somebody standing by it happens to sneeze, hiccup or yawn. A sneeze brings forth Hasshoo; a hiccup calls out Eppah, and a yawn summons Ya-ahn. While they are out they must grant the wishes of whoever released them, until another inadvertent sneeze, etc., sends them back again. But it's not an unmixed blessing for their new master! Hasshoo is so clumsy that his attempts to obey wishes result in hilarious disaster. And mischievous Ya-ahn always finds a way to humorously twist the wish in a way her master never thought of.
Hiroshi Sasagawa directed the Hakushon Daimaō anime from 1969-1970. The anime inspired a spinoff series titled Yobarete Tobidete Akubi-chan in 2001, and this show in turn had a sequel in 2001. The anime also inspired a live-action special in 2013.
Source: Mainichi Shimbun's Mantan Web