Dr. Slump

Dr. スランプ

Dr. Slump is filled with puns, sexual references, and bathroom jokes, and parodies of both Japanese and American culture. For example, one of the recurring characters is "Suppaman", a short, fat, pompous buffoon who transforms into a Superman-like costume by eating a sour-tasting ("suppai" in Japanese) umeboshi. Unlike Superman, Suppaman can't fly, and instead pretends to fly by lying belly down on a skateboard and scooting through the streets. Also, a policeman in Dr. Slump can be seen wearing a Star Wars-style storm trooper helmet, just as in the American movies. The Dr. Slump manga has been licensed by Viz Media and is currently being published in graphic novel form, with having most of the sexual references and humor, nudity, and as well as alcohol usage and references edited out or censored. Dr. Slump and the anime based on it have been run in almost everywhere else in the West; for example, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico and Spain.

Dr. Slump is set in Penguin Village (ペンギン村 Pengin Mura), a place where humans co-exist with all sorts of anthropormorphic animals and other objects. In this village lives Senbei Norimaki (則巻千兵衛 Norimaki Senbei), an inventor (his name is a pun on a kind of rice cracker). His nickname is "Dr. Slump" (a joke that can be seen as similar to nicknaming an author "Writer's Block.") In the first issue, he builds a little robot girl he names Arale Norimaki (則巻アラレ Norimaki Arare, a pun on another kind of rice cracker), in scenes obviously parodying the Italian children's classic Pinocchio (note: "Arale" is Toriyama's official romanized spelling of her name). Because Senbei is a lousy inventor, she soon turns out to be in severe need of eyeglasses. She is also very naïve, and in later issues she has adventures such as bringing a huge bear home, having mistaken it for a pet. To Senbei's credit, she does have super-strength. In general, the manga focuses on Arale's misunderstandings of humanity and Senbei's inventions, rivalries, and romantic misadventures.