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Original Manga Naoki Urasawa
Director/Artist Masayuki Kojima
Format Anime (TV), Manga
Made By Madhouse Studios
Episode Length 24 Minutes
# of Episodes 74 (TV)
18 (Manga)


Drama, Suspense, Psychological

Sum it up in a Sentence

Genius brain surgeon saves the life of a boy who becomes a serial killer, then sets out to kill him when he himself becomes a fugitive.

Main Description

The show revolves around Kenzou Tenma, genius brain surgeon turned wrongly-accused fugitive. In 1986 West Germany, Tenma chooses to save the life of a boy with a gun shot wound to the head over a wealthy politician. He saves the boy's life, but the politician, who had promised the Director of the hospital a large donation, died, leaving Tenma with no opportunity to advance his career. Tenma is frustrated, wishing the Director and his lackeys death, which they mysteriously get. Soon after the boy Tenma had saved and his twin sister disappear, and Tenma is promoted to Head of Neurosurgery. Things go smoothly until several years later, when the boy (Johan), now a young man, appears in front of Tenma again and admits to killing the Director and his followers, then kills one of Tenma's patients.

Suspicion falls on Tenma, forcing him to go on the run. Tenma learns the truth about Johan (he's a serial killer) and resolves to kill him. The show follows Tenma across Germany searching for clues about the twins' past and current plans, frequently getting side tracked to help out various characters in need of medical attention and avoid the authorities. The show takes many twists and turns, often only tangentially relating to the twins, but ultimately the show gets down to business: unveiling the true nature of a monster.

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Personal Opinions

Clanpot Shake

This is a long series, weighing in at 74 episodes, which is a bit too hefty for my tastes. That said, I did enjoy this series. The story is engaging and realistic. It's a nice break from giant robots fighting each other in space with rape tentacles.

The show often tries to feel suspenseful or frightening, but feels insincere at times. The final episode was genuinely frightening, and there were a few good moments here and there, but overall I watched it because I wanted to know what happened. Character development is top notch, as is the story.

Overall, this is a good series in a genre that doesn't have enough representatives. If you have the time, I recommend it.


This came highly recommended as an excellent psychological thriller, and I can't say that it failed in that regard. The story compelling and suspenseful, and I found that my sympathies shifted throughout the series. However, I felt that it would have been significantly improved if it were about a dozen episodes shorter.

There was nothing I would call filler, but there were quite often episodes which spent a fairly large proportion of their time rehashing things you'd already seen. While I can imagine this being useful if you were watching it at a one-episode-per week pace, I found that it caused the series to become wearing after a while.

On the whole, I recommend watching it if you have any interest in the premise, but there may be times when you would be best off skimming through half an episode or so.