In order to know yourself, you need to know your history. In order to know what Japanese is, you firstly have to learn about Japanese history. However, your past days are just in memories. Moreover, it is equivocal and uncertain. History is so, too because it means past of aggregate of man. So you should take a consistent and believable material as much as possible, for knowing history. Man has made history and so you need little imagination to think it cannot help including lies and truth, needn't you?
Foreigners often think about Ninja speaking of Japan. But few have right pictures about Ninja. Since Ninja action manga comics have been popular in Japan, or since their actual conditions are very mysterious, a lot of people tend to think Ninja is just like some action hero domestic and overseas.
In fact, however, who can walk on water, vanish in smoke, or jump from a castle roof to another castle roof in the world? Watching ability of Japanese representative players at Olympic, you easily see.
Amako Soubē started to write Rakudai Ninja Rantaro on Asahi Shougakusei Newspaper in 1986, and it has been ongoing. That manga comically shows real situations of Ninja, exploding established wrong images.
The fictional characters live in the latter term of Muromachi era. They enter Ninjutsu Gakuen, meaning Ninja School, to become elite Ninja and temper day and night. But that is not sports-oriented manga. They are written for children as a comical manga. So you can be relaxed to read from easiness. Rantaro, its main role, is 10 years old.
You cannot make light of that as a manga for children because Amako does certain background research for making Rakudai Ninja Rantaro in comical touch. Of course, it includes humor a lot.
For example, a man talks like that in an episode. The chief aim of Ninja is espionage. Ninja mainly hides and runs away instead of fighting with enemies. It is common that they hardly have several throwing-knives since heavy and bulky.
Rakudai Ninja Rantaro plainly shows Japanese styles of those days. And you can enjoyably know. Needless to say, as mentioned in introduction, it leads to learning about Japanese.
about Rakudai Ninja Rantaro
・Written and Illustrated by Amako Soubē
・Published by Asahi Shimbun Publications
・Serialized from January 1986 to The Present
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