Cover of manga volume 29
Genre Comedy
Written by Mikio Igarashi
Published by Takeshobo
Demographic Salaryman
Magazine Manga Club
Manga Life
Original run March 1986 – present
Volumes 41
Anime film
Directed by Mikio Igarashi
Produced by Atsushi Tashiro
Written by Mikio Igarashi
Music by Gontiti
Studio Group Tac
Released November 13, 1993
Runtime 103 minutes
Anime television series
Directed by Tetsuo Yasumi
Written by Tetsuo Yasumi
Yasuhiro Komatsuzaki
Satoru Nishizono
Shōji Yonemura
Kazuhiko Gōdo
Chinatsu Hōjō
Studio Group Tac
Network TV Tokyo
Original run April 20, 1995 March 28, 1996
Episodes 48
Developer Amuse, Bandai Visual
Publisher Amuse, Bandai Visual
Genre Simulation
Platform 3DO
Released April 21, 1995[1]
Bonogurashi: Kore de Kanpeki Disu
Developer Amuse
Publisher Amuse
Genre Adventure
Platform Sony PlayStation
Released June 7, 1996[2]
Anime film
Bonobono: Kumomo no Ki no Koto
Directed by Kōki Kumagai
Produced by Akihiro Itō
Written by Mikio Igarashi
Kōki Kumagai
Music by Gontiti
Studio Amuse Pictures
Released August 10, 2002
Runtime 61 minutes
Anime television series
Directed by Hidenori Yamaguchi
Studio Eiken
Network Fuji TV
Original run April 2, 2016 – present

Bonobono (ぼのぼの) is a yonkoma manga series by Mikio Igarashi. From March 1986 to March 1987, the series ran in the Takeshobo manga magazine Tensai Club before the magazine was replaced with Manga Club, where it has been serialized since April 1987. It has also been serialized in Manga Life since April 1986. It has been adapted into an anime television series,[3] as well as two anime films and two video games.[1][2]

While the series is considered a yonkoma manga, most of the "stories" use eight panels. The series follows the main character, a young sea otter after whom the manga is titled, and his daily adventures with his friends from the nearby forest. Bonobono combines gag comic and philosophical questions, bringing up comparisons to other manga such as Azumanga Daioh,[4] and to films such as Forrest Gump.[5]

In 1988, Bonobono won the Kodansha Manga Award in the General category.[6] An anime film was released in theaters on November 13, 1993, and an anime television series was broadcast on TV Tokyo from April 20, 1995 through March 28, 1996. One day after the TV series began, a simulation game was released on the 3DO system.[1] The following June, an adventure game was released on the PlayStation.[2] Several ehon—or "picture books"—have been released since the manga series was first introduced over 20 years ago.


In addition to the original tankōbon releases, the first twenty tankōbon volumes have been rereleased in bunkoban format as 15 volumes. Several stand-alone picture books have been released as well.

For the first film, an ekonte—or storyboard—volume and a set of four film comics have been released.



Takeshobo released all the volumes of manga listed below.


Takeshobo released all the volumes of manga listed below.

Film comics

These books contain scenes from the first Bonobono film laid out in comic book format. All were released by Takeshobo.


This book contains the storyboards for the first Bonobono film.

Picture books

Various Bonobono picture books have been released, including the following. Titles are listed chronologically.


1993 film

The first theatrical release, titled Bonobono, opened in theaters on 1993-11-13. The film has since been broadcast on domestic television in Japan, including on broadcast satellite channels such as NHK BS-2. The film has been released on VHS and DVD in Japan, including in a "no cut" edition.[7]




1995 TV series

The Bonobono anime television series ran from April 20, 1995 through March 28, 1996 as part of the "Anime Can" (アニメ缶 Anime Kan) series on Tuesday evenings from 7:00 pm to 7:30 pm on TV Tokyo. Each episode was 15 minutes long, and was paired with an episode of Bit the Cupid to fill out the 30-minute timeslot. The series has been rebrodacast on several different channels and networks, including Animax and the on-demand internet streaming service GyaO.

The entire TV series was released as two DVD box sets on April 20, 2007.


  • Planning: Takashi Sakurai, Atsushi Tashiro
  • Director: Hitoshi Nanba
  • Series Director: Tetsuo Yasumi
  • Character Design: Yūka Hotani
  • Chief Animation Director: Yūka Hotani
  • Writers: Tetsuo Yasumi, Yasuhiro Komatsuzaki, Satoru Nishizono, Shōji Yonemura, Kazuhiko Gōdo, Chinatsu Hōjō
  • Episode Directors: Kiyotaka Ōhata, Takashi Ikebata, Shinichi Watanabe, Takashi Yamazaki, Daiji Suzuki, Kiyoshi Fukumoto, Kiyoko Sayama, Tetsuya Watanabe, Takashi Asami, Kazunari Kume, others
  • Music: Kazunori Miyake
  • Audio Director: Susumu Aketagawa
  • Music Producer: Sumio Matsuzaki
  • Art Director: Kō Watanabe
  • Editor: Masashi Furukawa
  • Director of Photography: Mitsunobu Yoshida
  • Producers: Keisuke Iwata (TV Tokyo), Masatoshi Kanesaka
  • Animation Producer: Kenjirō Kawato
  • Animation Production: Group Tac
  • Production: TV Tokyo, Amuse, Inc.

Theme songs

Chikamichi Shitai (近道したい)
Lyrics, Vocals: Kyōko Suga
Composition, Arrangement: Etsuko Yamakawa
Ending theme for episodes 1-23 and 48
Love, Two Love
Lyrics, Composition, Vocals: Kyōko Suga
Arrangement: Ryō Yonemitsu
Ending theme for episodes 24-47



TV specials

Following the anime television series, nine specials were aired on TV Tokyo. At the beginning of each special, the next special was also introduced, and showed some animation from it. The specials used a lot of animation from the series, and while the content fit the season in which the special was broadcast, the music, scripts, and jokes were changed for each of the specials. The voice actors from the TV series were used for the specials.

2002 film

Bonobono: Kumomo no Ki no Koto (ぼのぼの クモモの木のこと) was the second theatrical Bonobono movie, released by Amuse Pictures in theaters in Japan on August 10, 2002. It was done completely in 3D.




2016 TV series

A new TV anime adaption started airing on April 2016.[11]


Theme song

Bonobono Suru (bonobonoする)
Lyrics, Vocals: Monobright



Two games based on the Bonobono series have been released. The first was Bonogurashi (ぼのぐらし), a simulation game released on 1995-04-21 for the 3DO Interactive Multiplayer system by Amuse and Bandai Visual.

The second game was titled Bonogurashi: Kore de Kanpeki Disu (ぼのぐらし〜これで完璧でぃす〜), an adventure game released by Amuse for the PlayStation system on 1996-06-07.


  1. 1 2 3 Kindaichi, Wazahiko, ed. (2000-12-01). "3DO". Kōgien (広技苑) (in Japanese) (2000年秋 ed.). Mainichi Communications. pp. 995–996. ISBN 4-8399-0447-2.
  2. 1 2 3 Kindaichi, Wazahiko, ed. (2000-12-01). "プレイステーション". Kōgien (広技苑) (in Japanese) (2000年秋 ed.). Mainichi Communications. p. 1278. ISBN 4-8399-0447-2.
  3. 1 2 ぼのぼの (1995) (in Japanese). AllCinema Online. Retrieved 2007-11-24.
  4. Bryce, Mio. "'School' in Japanese children's lives as depicted in manga" (PDF). p. 13. Retrieved 2007-11-23.
  5. Califf, Jennifer. "Bonobono". Anime Web Turnpike. Retrieved 2007-11-23.
  6. Joel Hahn. "Kodansha Manga Awards". Comic Book Awards Almanac. Archived from the original on 2007-08-16. Retrieved 2007-08-21.
  7. "ぼのぼのプラス (1994)". AllCinema Online. Retrieved 2007-11-24.
  8. "ぼのぼの (1993)". AllCinema Online.
  9. "BS夏休みアニメ特選|ぼのぼの劇場版". NHK. Retrieved 2007-11-23.
  10. "ぼのぼの クモモの木のこと (2002)". AllCinema Online. Retrieved 2007-11-23.
  11. "Bono bono gag comedy gets tv anime after 2 decades". Anime News Network. December 16, 2015. Retrieved December 16, 2015.

External links

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