Karakurizōshi Ayatsuri Sakon

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Karakurizōshi Ayatsuri Sakon
Genre Detective fiction
Written by Masaru Miyazaki
Illustrated by Takeshi Obata
Published by Shueisha
Demographic Shōnen
Magazine Weekly Shōnen Jump
Original run 19951996
Volumes 4
Anime television series
Directed by Hitoyuki Matsui
Studio Tokyo Movie Shinsha
Network WOWOW
Original run October 8, 1999March 31, 2000
Episodes 26
Light novel
Written by Takashi Yamada, Maro Sharaku
Illustrated by Takeshi Obata
Published by Shueisha
Demographic Shōnen
Imprint Jump J Books
Published April 26, 1996
Volumes 1
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Karakurizōshi Ayatsuri Sakon (人形(からくり)草紙あやつり左近?, lit. "Doll Puppeteer Sakon") is a manga series written by Masaru Miyazaki (under the alias Sharakumaro) and illustrated by Takeshi Obata. The plot follows Tachibana Sakon (橘 左近?), a bunraku puppeteer who solves mysteries with Ukon (右近?), a puppet.

Karakurizōshi Ayatsuri Sakon was serialized in the Shueisha magazine Weekly Shōnen Jump from 1995 to 1996. The chapters were collected into four Tankōbon bound volumes. The manga was adapted into an animated television series by Tokyo Movie Shinsha and broadcast on the satellite network WOWOW from October 8, 1999, to March 31, 2000.


Sakon Tachibana (橘 左近 Tachibana Sakon): A master puppeteer who likes to travel and solve mysteries along his journeys with his puppet and best friend, Ukon. When he does not have Ukon with him, he is a very timid, humble young boy. However, once he places Ukon on his hand, he develops a careful, quiet, observant and calculating personality. He is displayed as a brilliant young man who can solve any case but feels that sometimes it is best "not to see everything so clearly", and is often underestimated by the criminals because of his young age and occupation as a puppeteer. He is also considered very handsome and cute, despite his young age and is often hit on by older women, much to his embarrassment and annoyance. He often worries whenever Ukon is not with him, considering him as his family, and is shown to have a kind heart and will do his best to help those in need. It has been shown that when he was younger, he was often bullied for liking and playing with puppets and that when he was seven, his father committed suicide after injuring another performer's face by accident.

Ukon (右近 Ukon): A 100-year-old child doll made in the early Meiji era by a famous puppet maker. When Sakon operates him, he appears to come to life, having a very distinct personality that differs drastically from Sakon's reserved, quiet nature (when he holds Ukon); however, the two continue to have a strong sibling like bond. He is loud, talkative, rude, and likes beautiful girls. He tends to jump to conclusions in his deductions of who the criminal is, and becomes irritated if Sakon does not tell him what he is thinking or who he suspects is the criminal, often relying on him to explain his deduction of the crime. He is also the one to inspire confidence in Sakon and the victims of the case they are trying to solve. He also has the ability to allow the souls of the dead to take possession of his body to listen to their final words before their death, which often comes in handy when solving mysteries.

Kaoruko Tachibana (橘 薫子 Tachibana Kaoruko): Sakon's aunt from his mother's side and assistant police detective. She often follows Sakon on his journeys so she can meet handsome men and eat delicious food, and believes herself to be a rare beauty. She also often focuses more on the motives of people involved in a crime rather than their alibis and possible method of murder, which she often relies on Sakon for. She insists that Sakon call her "Kaoruko nee-san" rather than "Kaoruko obaa-san" and hits Ukon whenever he insults her or says a careless remark.

Zenkichi Fujita (Fujita Zenkichi): A photographer friend of Sakon's, who sometimes joins him on his travels, and helps in his investigations. He is obsessed with taking pictures, but tends to forget to take them, which Ukon makes note of.

Hazuki Funasaki (船橋葉月 Funasaki Hazuki): A supporting character in the first investigation, she requests Sakon's help after she receives a strange letter. She was a part of a puppet club in school, and during her time there, an accident had happened which led to the suicide of one of the members. She is very laid back, and easy going.

Mai Kawai (河合 舞 Kawai Mai): A pop idol, who appears as a supporting character in the second mystery. Her production crew, and friends gather at a puppet mansion to film a new show starring her. Mai is very shy, quiet and easily startled.

Sayoko Fukami (深見 小夜子 Fukami Sayoko): A supporting character, who appears in the third mystery involving the puppet workshop. She is a young girl, whose best friend is a black cat named Ririsu.

Shiho Akizuki (秋月 四帆 Akizuki Shiho) : is a supporting character of the 2nd arc of the anime series and is the 4th child of the Akizuki Family. In the arc her brother, the first born child of the Akizuki family is accused of murder...and slowly her family members start dying starting with her father the head of the family. She refuses to believe that her brother is the killer, and helps Sakon figure out the mystery.

Ittetsu Kisaragi (如月 一徹Kisaragi Ittetsu): Is a supporting character in the fifth mystery, involving an Egyptian museum. He is in fact, a long time friend of Sakon. He was originally Sakon's teacher, who told him to never give up in his passion for puppetry.

Naoto Kujou (九条 直人Kujou Naoto): A supporting character in the sixth mystery, he is Kaoruko's fiance in an arranged marriage. He is in fact one of the best performers at Kujou Academy.

Hoshie Nishimura (西村 星江Nishimura Hoshie): A supporting character in the seventh mystery. Her sister Tsukiko, committed suicide six months ago. People have started to report seeing the ghost of Tsukiko wandering around, and even committing murder.

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