Rascal the Raccoon (1977– )
"Araiguma Rasukaru" (original title)

TV Series  |   |  Animation, Drama, Family
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.4/10 from 161 users  
Reviews: 1 user

Add a Plot

0Check in




Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Anne of Green Gables (TV Series 1979)
Animation | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Based on the books by Lucy Maud Montgomery, this 50 episode series tells the story of Anne Shirley, a young orphan living in 19th century Canada.

Stars: Eiko Yamada, Fumie Kitahara, Michio Hazama
Heidi: A Girl of the Alps (TV Series 1974)
Animation | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

This animation series follows the childhood "adventures" of a girl named Heidi, who lives with her grandfather somewhere on the Alps.

Stars: Kazuko Sugiyama, Kôhei Miyauchi, Noriko Ohara
Future Boy Conan (TV Series 1978)
Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  

After the world is nearly destroyed by a war, a young boy and his friends must fight to save the world from those who seek to conquer what is left of civilization.

Stars: Noriko Ohara, Masatô Ibu, Mieko Nobusawa
The Kickers (TV Series 1986)
Animation | Comedy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Stars: Yûko Kobayashi, Ikue Ohtani, Tarako
Maya the Bee (1975–1980)
Animation | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The story of a young bee named Maya and her adventures.

Stars: Michiko Nomura, Ichirô Nagai, Etha Coster
Captain Tsubasa (1983–1986)
Animation | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A young boy who loves to play soccer.

Stars: Arihiro Hase, Kôichi Hashimoto, Akari Hibino
Animation | Adventure | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

This is an animated adaptation of the classic story of Nils Holgerson, a naughty boy who is transformed to a very little dwarf and goes through many adventures, flying with a band of wild geese.

Stars: Masane Tsukayama, Elmar Wepper, Mami Koyama
Animation | Fantasy | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A boy with a mythical sword wants to protect a Norse village from an evil ice wizard and his minions, who destroyed his family's village. However, the villagers don't fully trust him and a mysterious girl with a dark secret befriends him.

Director: Isao Takahata
Stars: Yukari Asai, Mikijirô Hira, Etsuko Ichihara
Family | Short | Animation
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

This is the sequel history of "Panda. Go, Panda. (1972)". The trio (the young girl orphan, a panda cub and his father) are joined by a tiger cub who has escaped from a circus.

Director: Isao Takahata
Stars: Kazuko Sugiyama, Kazuo Kumakura, Yûko Maruyama
Animation | Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

When her grandmother goes away on a trip, 7-year-old Mimiko stays at home by herself in her small, friendly village, unafraid of burglars. When she arrives back home from the train station ... See full summary »

Director: Isao Takahata
Stars: Kazuko Sugiyama, Kazuo Kumakura, Yoshiko Ohta
House-hunting (2006)
Animation | Short | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Fuki sets out on a journey to look for a new house. Along the way, she encounters many of Japan's guardian spirits.

Director: Hayao Miyazaki
Stars: Tamori, Akiko Yano
Animation | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Anne is an orphan full of imagination. When she arrives at her new home she learns that sometimes you have to be a sensible person too; at the same time her unique character changes, or at ... See full summary »

Director: Isao Takahata
Stars: Eiko Yamada, Kitahara Fumie, Fumie Kitahara


Series cast summary:
Toshihiko Utsumi ...
 Sutâringu (16 episodes, 1977)
Masato Yamanouchi ...
 Uirâdo (16 episodes, 1977)
Akiko Tsuboi ...
 Kyasarin (14 episodes, 1977)
Yûji Shikamata ...
 Osukâ (10 episodes, 1977)
Kuniko Kashii ...
 Erizabesu (8 episodes, 1977)
Masaya Taki ...
 Suramî (8 episodes, 1977)
Miyoko Asô ...
 Haketto fujin / ... (8 episodes, 1977)
Toshiya Ueda ...
 Fûton shi (7 episodes, 1977)


Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis





Release Date:

2 January 1977 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Raccoon Rascal  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(52 episodes)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Based on the American book 'Rascal', an autobiography written by author Sterling North on his childhood in Wisconsin. See more »


Featured in The Nature of Things: Raccoon Nation (2011) See more »


Oide Rasukaru
Lyrics by Eriko Kishida
Music by Takeo Watanabe
Arranged by Yûshi Matsuyama
Performed by Kumiko Ôsugi
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Charming anime adaptation of Sterling North's "Rascal"
6 August 2013 | by (Bronx, NY) – See all my reviews

"Rascal the Racoon" was the 1977 entry in Japan's long-running World Masterpiece Theater, a series of animated adaptations of western literary works. It was based on Sterling North's "Rascal: A Memoir of a Better Era," an account published in 1964 of the author's childhood in Wisconsin and his relationship with a raccoon he'd rescued when it was a baby and raised as a pet. The book had been previously made into a live-action film by the Walt Disney Studio in 1969 and starred Steve Forrest and Billy Mumy.

For this review, I watched a 92-minute compilation of key sequences from the series, edited into a two-part TV special. It was in Japanese with no subtitles. The dialogue scenes were often a problem to follow, especially when they ended with the characters crying, but there are lots of scenes with Rascal, the raccoon, and Sterling, his pre-adolescent owner, and their antics together. We see Sterling rescue Rascal after its mother is killed by a hunter and watch as he nurtures Rascal and gets him acclimated to life in a rural household in Wisconsin in the 1910s. Sterling's mother dies not long after Rascal has entered the household and Rascal's affectionate attention helps him get through his grief. When Rascal sneaks away at night to raid a nearby cornfield, it arouses the ire of the local farmers and Sterling and his father have to build a pen around the tree where Rascal sleeps and keep him caged, much to Rascal's dismay. Eventually, Rascal responds to the call of the wild when a female raccoon begins to poke around his pen and Sterling has to make a tough decision.

There is one long suspenseful sequence early on where Sterling and his father try to return Rascal to the wild, thinking it's in his best interest. After some hesitation, Rascal has other ideas and his plaintive cries, as Sterling and his father paddle away in their canoe, are heartbreaking. What's remarkable about this scene is the quality of the voice work by the actress playing Rascal (Masako Nozawa, better known for playing Goku on "Dragon Ball") as the animal squeals and pleads for Sterling to come back. Throughout the series, in fact, the use of animal and other natural sounds is extremely well done, evoking a sense of place as well as any animated depiction of nature (including MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO).

While the human character design is fairly simple (as was the style on World Masterpiece Theater), the background designs are rich in detail, particularly when the characters venture into the forest and paddle their canoe upriver. The animation of Rascal is quite expressive as he climbs, nudges Sterling, and eats all sorts of foods, actions enhanced by Ms. Nozawa's voice work, all of which make Rascal the liveliest character in the series, almost to the point of Disney-style anthropomorphism at times. In the opening and closing credits sequences, we see all kinds of distinctly un-raccoon-like mischief performed by Rascal, including dipping his paw in an ink bottle and then applying his paw print to each page of a book, turning the pages with his other paw. His little claws turn out to be quite nimble in scenes like this and he eats more than his share of snacks, gripping a sandwich in much the same way that Sterling does. At times, Rascal behaves more like a dog than a raccoon, particularly when he rides in Sterling's bike basket and sits up and looks out. Sterling and Rascal have a kind of easy rapport that looks forward to the camaraderie shared by Ash Ketchum and his electric rodent Pokémon, Pikachu, in the long-running anime series, "Pokémon." Pikachu even bears a slight resemblance to Rascal. I wouldn't be surprised if the creators of "Pokémon" admitted to fond childhood memories of seeing "Rascal" on TV.

This was the first World Masterpiece Theater series to be set in America, so perhaps the animators can be forgiven for one glaring error in their depiction of American road rules: in scenes involving cars they put the steering wheel on the right side of the dashboard, the way it is in Japanese cars, and not on the left as it is in American cars.

A number of World Masterpiece Theater series were dubbed in English and shown in some form in the U.S., including two others based on American novels, "Tom Sawyer" and "Little Women." As far as I can tell, "Rascal" was never dubbed into English, nor has it been shown in the U.S., even in subtitled form. The book is popular, still in print, and continues to be read by schoolchildren here. From what I've seen of the series, it looks like something that could be easily embraced by an anime-savvy American audience, particularly one raised on "Pokémon." Is it not too late to release it here? Numerous other classic anime series have been newly released in English on DVD in the last couple of years, including "Mysterious Cities of Gold," "The Little Prince," "Rose of Versailles," and "Princess Knight." Can "Rascal" be far behind?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Rascal the Raccoon (1977) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: