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Calimero character
Calimero poster showing two of the main characters.
First appearanceCarosello
Created byNino Pagot
Toni Pagot
Ignazio Colnaghi
Voiced byIgnazio Colnaghi
Davide Garbolino (2013-present)
In-universe information
OriginItaly, France
Anime television series
Directed byYugo Serikawa
StudioOrganizzazione Pagot
Toei Animation
Original networkRAI (1963–1972)
NET (now TV Asahi) (1972–1975)
Original run July 14, 1963 September 30, 1975
Anime television series
Directed byTsuneo Tominaga, Shigeru Ueda
Music byJunnosuke Yamamoto
StudioToei Animation
Original networkTV Tokyo
Original run October 15, 1992 September 9, 1993
Episodes52 - 2D 105 - 3D
Anime television series
StudioGaumont Animation
Original networkTV Tokyo
Original run October 7, 2013 September 25, 2016

Calimero is an animated television series about a charming, but hapless anthropomorphized chicken; the only black one in a family of yellow chickens.[1] He wears half of his egg shell still on his head. Calimero originally appeared on the Italian television show Carosello on July 14, 1963, and soon became a popular icon in Italy.

The characters were created by the animation studio Organizzazione Pagot and originated as a series of animated advertisements for Miralanza AVA soap products shown throughout Italy. The creators of the main character were Nino Pagot, Toni Pagot and Ignazio Colnaghi.[2] At the end of each episode, it turns out that Calimero is not actually black, but only very dirty, and becomes white after being washed by the advertised soap products.

The characters were later licensed in Japan as an anime series twice, titled Calimero (カリメロ, Karimero). The first was made by Toei Animation and ran from October 15, 1972, to September 30, 1975; the second, with new settings and characters, was made in 1992. Altogether, 99 Japanese episodes were made (47 in the 1972 Toei series, and 52 in the 1992 Toei series). The series mostly consists of the many adventures of Calimero and his friends as they solve mysteries and make documentaries. However, their adventures usually get them into quite a bit of trouble. The second series was never renewed for a second season. English dubbed versions for the first two anime series were never officially released, though dubbed pilot episodes do exist. However, the series did come out in other languages. The original 1970s shorts and the third CGI series were released in English however. The first series was also broadcast on European networks such as TROS (Netherlands and Belgium), ZDF and RTL II (Germany) or TVE (Spain).

A third animation series about the character, in computer animation, premiered in TF1 in 2013. The production team includes France’s Gaumont Animation, rights owner Calidra, Italy’s Studio Campedelli and Japanese partners TV Tokyo and Kodansha. The series also aired on several other TV channels.[2]


1974 series[edit]

  • Calimero (カリメロ) – The hero of the show. Calimero is voiced by Katsue Miwa.[3]
  • Priscilla (プリシラ) – Calimero's girlfriend, a shy bird with common sense. Priscilla is voiced by Michiko Nomura.[3]
  • Peter Jobatta (ピーター ジョバッタ, Papero Piero in the Italian original spot) – Peter is voiced by Kaneta Kimotsuki.[3]
  • Buta (ブータ) – Buta is voiced by Masako Nozawa.[3]
  • Deppa (デッパ) – Deppa is voiced by Sachiko Chijimatsu.[3]
  • Calimero's mother (カリメロの母, Cesira in the Italian original spot) – Calimero's mother is voiced by Masako Nozawa.[3]
  • Calimero's father (カリメロの父, Gallettoni in the Italian original spot) – Calimero's father is voiced by Ken'ichi Ogata.[3]
  • Mr. Owl (フクロウ先生) – Mr. Owl is voiced by Jōji Yanami.[3]

1992 series[edit]

  • Calimero – Calimero is voiced by Shinobu Adachi.[3]
  • Priscilla – Priscilla is voiced by Akemi Okamura.[3]
  • Peter (ピーター) – Peter is voiced by Akirasa Ōmori.[3]
  • Giuliano (Peanut in English dub pilot) (ジュリアーノ) – Giuliano is voiced by Yūji Ueda.[3]
  • Susie (スージー) – a wealthy girl duck. Susie is voiced by Natsumi Sasaki.[3]
  • Roshita (ロシータ) – Roshita is voiced by Hiroko Kasahara.[3]
  • Pepe (ペペ) – Pepe is voiced by Masashi Ebara.[3]

2014 series[edit]

  • Calimero - Voiced by: Fanny Bloc (French) / Ayaka Asai (Japanese)
  • Priscilla -Voiced by: Naïke Fauveau (French) / Rumi Ōkubo (Japanese)
  • Giuliano (Valeriano in UK English dub)- Voiced by Georges de Vitis (French) / Kokoro Kikuchi (Japanese)
  • Peter (Pierrot in UK English dub) - Voiced by: Pascal Sellem (French) / Tōru Sakurai (Japanese)
  • Susie - Voiced by: Ren Kato (Japanese)
  • Pepe - Voiced by: Tōmoyuki Maruyama (Japanese)

Mobile game[edit]

A mobile game titled Calimero's Village was released for iOS and Android in 2015 by Bullipix.

Impact in popular culture[edit]

The main character in the anime series has had a lasting impact in the vocabulary of some countries, either because of his looks, with an egg shell on his head, or because of his frequent complaining about being unfairly treated by others:

  • Calimero is the name and subject of a Welsh language song by the band Super Furry Animals[4]
  • French singer Brigitte Fontaine collaborated with the band Stereolab on a song of the same name[5]
  • In the Netherlands and Belgium, the term "Calimerocomplex [nl]" is used to denote people who are staunchly convinced that their position as an underdog is due to their smaller size, either literally or symbolically, which covers up for their own shortcomings. Often the character's lines from the show are cited, "They are big and I is [sic] small and that is not fair, oh no!" (translated back from Dutch, with intentional error).[6]
  • The slang nickname during the 1970s and 1980s for military policemen in the Israeli Army was Calimero, due to their egg-shaped white helmet; the same was the case in Spain,[7] where calimero was also a name for a type of helmet for motorbikers.[8]


  1. ^ Crump, William D. (2019). Happy Holidays—Animated! A Worldwide Encyclopedia of Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and New Year's Cartoons on Television and Film. McFarland & Co. p. 38. ISBN 9781476672939.
  2. ^ a b McLean, Tom (January 27, 2014). "New 'Calimero' Series to Premiere on France's TF1".
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o カリメロアニメ紹介 (in Japanese). Chara Pit. Retrieved December 17, 2010.
  4. ^ The lyrics in Welsh say "Calimero wyt ti'n gwisgo wy ar dy ben" (Calimero you're wearing an egg on your head)
  5. ^ The lyrics in French say "Je suis Caliméro, le vilain poussin noir" ("I'm Calimero, the naughty black chicken").
  6. ^ Otte, Anja (May 5, 2009). "Calimero". Flanders Today. Retrieved June 6, 2012.
  7. ^ Juan Gómez Capuz: El argot de los soldados de reemplazo: aspectos lexico-semánticos, lexicogenésicos y fraseológicos. (In Spanish)
  8. ^ ABC newspaper: Adiós al «casco calimero» (In Spanish)

External links[edit]