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I admit that I only began reading the Crayon Shin-Chan manga a little later in my life. But for many of us, it’s one of the many manga we read growing up.

It’s fascinating to see that a story that revolves around a 5-year-old boy can be this iconic.

Just mention the name Shin-Chan and people know who you’re referring to right away.

On the surface, the Crayon Shin-Chan manga may seem like a kid-friendly manga considering how family-oriented the anime is.

But lo and behold, the manga is nothing like the anime at all.

Yes, the manga is so much different from the anime not because of how different the story in the anime is.

Rather, it has more to do with most of the jokes in the manga being so adult-oriented.

It’s hard to believe that a manga that has a 5-year-old boy as the main character is actually mainly for adult readers.

Yes, it can feel a little tad too strange to some people. But it’s because of this reason that makes the manga a fascinating read even to this day.

What makes the Crayon Shin-Chan manga a fascinating read even today

Let’s be honest here. What kind of a 5-year-old kid who is a ladies’ man, loves making poop jokes and enjoys showing off his dangling elephant for the world to see?

And let’s not forget how he also loves to wear a strange costume sometimes when he goes out with his friends.

Imagine him coming to see you wearing a poop costume.

Well, that’s Shin-Chan for you.

What makes the manga a fascinating read is more than just his love for making poop jokes and his fascination with wearing strange costumes.

It goes so much deeper than that.

It depicts the life of a typical Japanese household

Okay, you can argue that there are plenty of manga that depict the life of a typical Japanese family.

But what makes Crayon Shin-Chan to be so much different from these manga series other than the manga having many poop jokes?

Well, I will say it’s how the manga incorporates the popular pop culture at that time into the story.

While a manga like Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei tends to poke fun at pop culture, you don’t see that in Crayon Shin-Chan.

Instead of poking fun at the current pop culture and people’s obsession with them, you’ll get to see the same pop culture perception among the average Japanese as it is.

One of them is Misae’s obsession with Korean dramas which was a huge boom among Japanese housewives back then.

And there’s also one time when Misae told Himawari to wear a seatbelt because Kamenashi said so.

Yes, those names may seem foreign to you if you don’t know much about Japanese celebrities.

But there are quite a handful of foreign influential figures making a cameo appearance in the manga too.

One of them is Anna Sharapova whose name is Sarepowa in the manga.

While the story where Sarepowa appears is more in the fantasy setting, she still has the same ability as the actual Anna Sharapova.

It has parody, fantasy, and slice-of-life stories in between

As you can see here, the story in Crayon Shin-Chan isn’t just about the day-to-day life of the Nohara family.

You also get to see Shin-Chan going on an adventure and becoming a superhero.

For one, there was this one story where Shin-Chan and a group of people embarked on a journey to stop a man who wanted to revive a creature called Death Bird.

But the person who told them about this man’s evil plot is De Makase. Funnily enough, he seems to resemble Gandalf from The Lord of the Rings at first glance.

Just so you know the story takes place in a fantasy setting. That’s also the story where you get to see Shin-Chan and friends having a face-off with Sarepowa.

There are plenty of stories like this in the manga with some parodies mixed into them.

It’s not just about him going about his daily life which I don’t see anything wrong with that either.

I’m fine with it as long as they’re funny.

The jokes are still funny despite their dirty and lewd reference

Osomatsu-san anime comes to mind when it comes to a story that isn’t short of dirty and lewd jokes.

But as much as I try to appreciate the jokes in Osomatsu-san, sad to say that most of them are plain meh to me.

I didn’t find the normal jokes to be funny, let alone the dirty ones.

The anime somehow makes me feel like they’re trying too hard to make people laugh at the jokes.

Okay, not all episodes in Osomatsu-san are a dud. There are some of them that I find it funny.

But the rest of them are just plain terrible. The jokes are so off-putting to the point where the anime becomes unbearable to watch.

While the jokes in Osomatsu-san are off-putting for the most part, I don’t find anything off-putting with Shin-Chan’s poop jokes.

I can’t say for sure if it’s because of the translation that makes the jokes, even the dirty ones funny.

But at least it doesn’t look like the manga is trying too hard to make you laugh at every single joke.

The way the manga structures its chapter

Remember the story that I mentioned before where Shin-Chan and his friends go on a journey to stop the man’s evil ploy to revive the death bird?

Well, here’s the thing about the story.

You don’t get to see the continuation of the story in the next chapter.

Heck, you won’t be seeing that same story arc in the same volume either.

You will only get to see the continuation of the story in the next volume. But that will only be for a few chapters at most.

Rinse and repeat until that story arc ends.

So, what each volume will contain if that story arc only covers a few chapters tops?

Well, you can expect to see each volume have a continuation of the previous arc or a standalone story.

Yes, I admit it can be a hassle to read especially when you’re missing a volume in between.

But strangely enough, I don’t see it as a problem despite reading the manga in random order.

But the manga is based on the actual person

If you’re a fan of Crayon Shin-Chan, I’m sure that you may have heard about the rumor that Shin-Chan is based on the actual 5-year-old boy who died in an accident while trying to save his sister.

His mother, Misae, drew a picture of him with crayons as a way for her to cope with the loss of her son.

That was how the manga came out to be.

Whether the rumor is true or not is something that I’m not sure of. For all we know, there was a similar incident happened before except the boy’s name is something else.

But all I can say is no sane mother would be happy to see her own son being portrayed in a negative light.

And yes, even if it’s in the name of entertainment.

Still, it’s hard to say since there are mothers who are willing to rake the dough at the expense of their own children.

So, it doesn’t seem far off that the rumor turns out to be true, after all.

I don’t know how the rumor about Shin-Chan came about.

But like most people, I do hope that the rumor is NOT true. And the Shin-Chan that we know is nothing but a fictional character.

What would happen if the manga still exists to this day

Well, you can bet that you’ll get to see all sorts of modern cultural references in the story if the manga still exists today.

Yes, everything that we’re familiar with including the streaming services, social media influencers, and the pandemic.

But alas, we don’t get to see that anymore due to Shin-Chan’s mangaka, Yoshito Usui, sudden death in 2009.

Thus, the manga ends in Vol.50 in 2010.

While the manga may already ended a long time ago, it amazes me that the manga still gives me a chuckle just as much as when I read it for the first time.

I’m not sure if you can still get the manga or not.

But give them a try if you have the chance.

P.S. I admit that I don’t write comedy. But if you’re looking for a serious read that gears towards the adult audience, then have a look at my thriller light novel series, Trigger Locked.

Curious about the story? You can take a look at the first book of the series right here on my Payhip store:

Trigger Locked Book 1: The Mind Control Assassins

Interested in buying the book? Use the coupon code SEKINAMAYUBLOG to receive 25% off on your purchase.

The book is also available in print and on other retailers such as Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and Apple Books.

But you can only get the book at a discount if you buy the book at my Payhip store, though.