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This anime was introduced in the Jump Festa Anime Tour 2005, after which it debuted on the 「火曜いージャン!!」 kayou i-jan!! segment, a Tuesday 1900~2000 hours time slot together with the 'Bleach' anime series on TV Tokyo channel on 2006-04-04 in Japan. It was subsequently moved to every Thursday 1800~1830 hours, outside the 'golden time' hours from October onwards in the same year in Japan. The series ended its run after Season 4 on 25 Mar 2010, at Episode 201. TV Tokyo announced a series of repeat telecasts called 「よりぬき銀魂さん」 yorinuki gintama tama san aka 'The Best of Gintama-san' to be shown every Monday from 1800~1830 hours starting 5 April 2010. A movie version of the Benizakura Chapter (anime episodes 58 to 61) was released in the the theaters in Japan starting 24 April 2010, during the Golden Week holiday.
The current time slot is just before the キンコンヒルズ 'King Kong Hills' variety show at 1830~1900 hours, which aired from 2006-10-5 until 2009-04-06. This show was hosted by duo by the name of キングコング King Kong, comprising comedians 西野 亮廣 Nishino Akihiro ( tsukkomi role) and 梶原 雄太 Kajiwara Yuuta ( boke role). This explained why the ending omake of some of the Gintama episodes aired during this time period frequently has Ginpachi Sensei calling out "Oi, King Kong duo, please take it from here".
This anime series is mostly based on the manga by Sorachi Hideaki 空知 英秋, first serialized in Weekly Shounen Jump, interspersed with the occasional episode created by the anime creators themselves, as a result of which some characters are original anime characters not found in the original manga. As of April 4, 2012, currenlty 44 volumes of the manga tankoubon have been published by Jump Comics. The series is helmed by renowned director 高松 信司 Takamatsu Shinji, well-known for directing other comedic anime including 「スクールランブル」 'School Rumble' and 'Kochikame' (full title is 「こちら葛飾区亀有公園前派出所」 kochira katsushikaku kameari kouen mae wa shutsujo).
In accordance to the manga's original premise, the series is part-period drama, part-science fiction and 100% comedy, with elements of space monsters and aliens mixed with historical samurai and ninjas. Its episodic nature meant that there is no main plot, but there are a few long chapter that spanned a number of episodes, the longest thus far being the The Blaze of Yoshiwara First Chapter 吉原炎上篇 standing at 8 episodes. Some episodes are made up of 2 different stories, comprising Part A and Part B.
|Shimura Shinpachi's introduction narration at the beginning of earlier episodes:|
And so goes the background setting for this anime series, which revolves around the adventures of an odd-job merchant which goes by the name of 'Yorozuya 万事屋' ...
Kintama 金魂 (きんたま can be translated as "golden balls, or be a bawdy euphemism for testicles(金玉）), a parody of Gintama 銀魂 itself, is set in the alternate world of Male Host Club located in Shinjuku 新宿 instead of Kabuki District 歌舞伎町. The table below sets out the Gintama characters' respective alter-egos in the Kintama world among other changes. Notable changes include:
- Sakata Kintoki 坂田金时 is a wandering vagrant with an appearance not unlike that of male hosts.
- Ketsuago Shinpachi ケツ顎新八 was the former number one host, but no longer holds this title.
- Kagura is a Chinese mafia don who takes Kintoki and Shinpachi in as her subordinates. She is a grown woman and is seen holding a pet Sadaharu, now about the size of a cat. She is sensitive to Shinpachi's feelings about his own butt chin and earnestly strives to help him find a solution.
- Kondou, Hijikata, and Okita all appear as blond-haired foreign male hosts. Yamazaki appears as Okita's blonde-maned white horse, but is supposedly a spy.
- Katsura is an okama host with a pet Elizabeth. He is almost identical to his "Zurako" appearance in the main series.
- Sacchan appears as a more elegant version of herself.
- The Kiheitai appear as their own version of the Yorozuya, though it is impled from Bansai's assassination of Matsudaira Katakuriko with a sniper rifle that they are hired assassins.
The anime preludes introduce Ketsuago Shinpachi in the same fashion that Shimura Shinpachi was introduced at the beginning of the series, with the setting in a host club, the angry shopkeeper becoming a male host, and the cheetah amanto becoming female versions who have come to the host club to be entertained by the men. Just as he (and everyone else) believes that Kintoki is about to bail him out of his predicament, Kintoki asks for the location of the toilet and is casually pointed in its direction by the host. Further segments reveal that Shinpachi was prevented from attaining this title not due to the foreign hosts that have largely occupied Shinjuku, but due to his own cleft chin (aptly called a "butt chin"). Shinpachi laments the butt chin but is presented with plastic surgery as a solution. The operation removes his butt chin but leaves him with a penile chin (censored out by conventional means) in its place.
Not to be confused with the Kintama Arc. The Kintoki featured in this short segment is also not to be confused with the character Sakata Kintoki in the Kintama Arc. Note that Kintoki is the only character to have two different characters share the same name in the same series.