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Gin Tama Manga Profile and Story Summary

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Gin Tama by Hideaki Sorachi, shonen manga series published by Shonen Jump Advanced / VIZ Media

Gin Tama Volume 1

© Hideaki Sorachi

Title:

Gin Tama (English)
Gintama (Japanese)

Creators:

Author and Artist: Hideaki Sorachi

Publishers:

Volumes:

21 volumes (continuing)

Manga Genres:

Content Rating:

OT – Older Teens, Age 16+ for suggestive humor, violence, some drug references
More about content ratings

About the Manga:

Gin Tama made its debut in the pages of Shonen Jump in 2004, and is Hideaki Sorachi's first long-form manga series. As of March 2007, Gin Tama Volume 1 has sold over 1 million copies in Japan.

In Japan, the title "Gin Tama" is written with kanji characters that can be interpreted as either "silver spirit" or "golden balls," or slang for testicles.

An animated TV series based on the manga was created by Sunrise studio and has been broadcast on TV Tokyo since 2006. Gin Tama has also been the basis for Nintendo DS and Nintendo Wii games for the Japanese market.

About the Author / Artist:

Hideaki Sorachi was born on May 25, 1979 and grew up in Hokkaido, Japan. He made his manga debut with two short stories, Dandelion and Shirokuro (White Black).

Story Summary:

In an alternate version of reality, the era of samurai came to an end when aliens (a.k.a. Amanto) landed in Japan, took up residence and set up space ports in the late 19th century. Where samurai were once elite members of society, they're now banned from carrying weapons and practicing martial arts. So what's an unemployed swordsman to do? If you're Gintoki Sataka, you take on odd jobs for cash – and in this strange new world, the odd jobs are really odd, and so are the customers.

Silver-haired Gin was once a fierce and respected warrior who fought against the alien Amanto forces when they first arrived in Japan. Nowadays, his attitude toward the aliens is somewhat more laid back, as he barely scrapes out a living doing random errands and assignments.

In his many misadventures, Gin is joined by young Shinpachi Shimura, a son of a former martial arts school master, and Kagura, an oddly strong alien girl with a strange accent, less than perfect manners and an even stranger attraction to very large animals.

Main Characters

Gintoki Sataka
You'd never think it to look at him now, but Gintoki is an expert swordsman and a fearless warrior who fought against the alien invasion. Now, this laid-back fellow takes whatever odd jobs come his way to pay his rent, which is almost always late. On the surface, Gin doesn't have a care in the world. Well, except when he's got a low-blood sugar moment, and something has come between him and his latest dose of sugar to combat his recurring bouts with hypoglycemia.

Shinpachi Shimura
Teenage Shinpachi grew up as the heir to a prominent sword fighting school. It's just been his bad luck to have this heritage when the aliens have banned sword fighting and demoted samurai to second-class citizen status. Shinpachi tends to act as Gintoki's straight man, except when he's busy being the president of teen idol Otsu Terakado's fan club.

Kagura
Kagura looks like an ordinary girl in a Chinese cheong-sam dress, but in reality, she's a an alien too. Kagura is a Yato, known as one of the "mightiest and nastiest mercenary races" in the universe. She's incredibly strong and tough. She has remarkable recuperative powers -- Kagura shrugs off gun shots, getting run over by a scooter or getting bit by her giant dog Sadaharu as mild annoyances. The only thing that really gets her down is being hungry and given the opportunity, she can she eat her hosts out of house and home.

Kotaro Katsura
Kotaro is one of Gintoki's ex-comrades from the Amanto war. He's also is a wanted criminal, due to his terrorist activities as part of the rebel group that are trying to get rid of the alien invaders.

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