Ninjas in popular culture
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Ninjas are historically known as Japanese spies, assassins, or thieves who formed their own caste outside the usual feudal divisions of lords, and samurai serfs. They are often used as stock characters in Japanese and world popular culture.
- 1 History
- 2 Examples
- 3 See also
- 4 References
- 5 Further reading
- 6 External links
The ninja first entered popular culture in the Edo period. In modern Japan, ninjas are a national myth that stems from folk tales and continues through modern day popular culture. Though many Japanese warriors performed amazing feats, there is no evidence that any of them were supernatural. Some of folk tales are based on historical figures, such as a daimyō (lord) challenging a ninja to prove his worth by stealing his pillow or weapon while he slept.:14
Superhuman or supernatural powers were sometimes associated with the ninja. Such powers include flight, invisibility, shapeshifting, the ability to "split" into multiple bodies, the summoning of animals, and control over the five classical elements. These notions stemmed from popular imagination regarding the ninja's mysterious status, as well as romantic ideas found in later Japanese art during the Edo period. Magical powers were sometimes rooted in the ninja's own efforts to disseminate fanciful information. For example, Nakagawa Shoshujin, the 17th-century founder of Nakagawa-ryū, or martial art style, claimed in his own writings (Okufuji Monogatari) that he had the ability to transform into birds and animals.:13
Perceived control over the elements may be grounded in real tactics, which were categorized by association with forces of nature. For example, the practice of starting fires in order to cover a ninja's trail falls under katon-no-jutsu ("fire techniques").
The ninja's adaption of kites in espionage and warfare is another subject of legends. Accounts exist of ninjas being lifted into the air by kites, where they flew over hostile terrain and descended into or dropped bombs on enemy territory. Kites were indeed used in Japanese warfare, but mostly for the purpose of sending messages and relaying signals.:257 Turnbull suggests that kites lifting a man into midair might have been technically feasible, but states that the use of kites to form a human "hang glider" falls squarely in the realm of fantasy.:22–23
Kuji-kiri is an esoteric religious practice which, when performed with an array of specified hand "seals" (kuji-in), or gestures, was meant to allow the ninja to interact with the spirit world and allow them to perform superhuman feats.
The kuji ("nine characters") is a concept originating from Taoism, where it was a string of nine words used in charms and incantations.:2–3 In China, this tradition mixed with Buddhist beliefs, assigning each of the nine words to a Buddhist deity. The kuji may have arrived in Japan via Buddhism,8-11}} where it flourished within Shugendō.:13 Here too, each word in the kuji was associated with Buddhist deities, animals from Taoist mythology, and later, Shinto kami.:24–27 The mudrā, a series of hand symbols representing different Buddhas, was applied to the kuji by Buddhists, possibly through the esoteric Mikkyō teachings.:24–25 The yamabushi ascetics of Shugendō adopted this practice, using the hand gestures in spiritual, healing, and exorcism rituals.
Later, the use of kuji passed onto certain bujutsu (martial arts) and ninjutsu schools, where it was said to have many purposes.:31–33 The application of kuji to produce a desired effect was called "cutting" (kiri) the kuji. Intended effects range from physical and mental concentration, to more incredible claims about rendering an opponent immobile, or even the casting of magical spells.:31 These legends were captured in popular culture, which interpreted the kuji-kiri as a precursor to magical acts.Template:Citation neededs
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Anime and manga
- Akakage, The Masked Ninja (仮面の忍者赤影 Kamen no Ninja Akakage): Anime adaptation of the television series
- Anime Ganbare Goemon: Anime based on the Goemon video-game series
- Azumi: The title character is a young woman brought up as part of a team of assassins charged with killing warlords who were threatening the uneasy peace in feudal Japan after the Sengoku period
- Basilisk (バジリスク〜甲賀忍法帖〜 Bajirisuku ~Kōga Ninpō Chō~, Basilisk: The Kōga Ninja Scrolls): Historical fantasy manga and anime where two ninja clans (Tsubagakure of the Iga and Manjidani of Kouga) fight to determine which grandson of Tokugawa Ieyasu will become the next shōgun. It features many characters from rival ninja clans during the Tokugawa shogunate.
- Black Lion (Kuro no Shishi): Manga series and anime film adaptation
- Brave10: Manga adaptation of Sanada Ten Braves
- Change 123
- Flame of Recca (烈火の炎 Rekka no Honō): A teenage boy learns that he is a descendant of a Hokage ninja clan which perished during the reign of Oda Nobunaga.
- Fūma no Kojirō
- Genki Bakuhatsu Ganbaruger
- Henshin Ninja Arashi: Manga by Shotaro Ishinomori
- Himawari! (ひまわりっ!): Comedy series about a non-ninja teacher at an all-girl ninja school
- I Am Sarutobi! (Ore wa Sarutobi da!): Manga by Osamu Tezuka about Sarutobi Sasuke.
- Igano Kabamaru
- Jubei-chan: The Ninja Girl (十兵衛ちゃん Jūbei-chan): Action-comedy television series about a teenage girl who turns into a deadly ninja warrior when she puts on an eye patch
- Shadow Hunters (Kage Gari)
- Kage Kara Mamoru!: A teenage boy transforms into a ninja to protect his neighbor.
- Kamui the Ninja: Stories Other Than the Legend (忍風カムイ外伝 Ninpū Kamui Gaiden): 1969 anime adaptation of The Legend of Kamui
- Kunoichi Hajimemashita!: Gag manga series
- Kunoichi Mahouden: Erotic manga series
- Karasu Tengu Kabuto: Manga series adapted into an anime series and an OVA film
- The Last Kunoichi (Kunoichi Bakumatsu Kitan): Erotic anime series about kunoichi caught in the struggles of the late Tokugawa shogunate
- The Legend of Kamui: Manga series
- Kyatto Ninden Teyandee (Samurai Pizza Cats): In the Japanese version, the title characters are ninja facing ninja enemies.
- Lupin III: Goemon Ishikawa XIII, a member of Lupin's gang, is the 13th descendant of the historical Goemon.
- Nabari no Ou: A modern-day Japanese student holds the most powerful secret art in the ninja world.
- Ninja, the Wonder Boy (まんが猿飛佐助 Manga Sarutobi Sasuke): Adventures of young ninja Sarutobi Sasuke
- Ninja Girls (乱飛乱外 Rappi Rangai, lit. Flying out of turbulence): A boy rescues a kunoichi, who becomes his servant and introduces him to her friends.
- Ninja Hattori-kun (忍者ハットリくん)
- Ninja Nonsense: The Legend of Shinobu (ニニンがシノブ伝 Ninin ga Shinobuden, also 2x2 Shinobuden): A teenage girl becomes involved with a kunoichi and her family.
- Ninja Robots (忍者戦士飛影 Ninja Senshi Tobikage, lit. "Ninja Warrior Tobikage"): Science-fiction series in which Martian teenagers pilot ninja-style robots to protect a princess in an interplanetary war
- Ninja Scroll: The Series (Jūbē Ninpūchō Ryūhōgyoku Hen)
- Path of the Assassin (Hanzō no Mon): Story of ninja Hattori Hanzō
- Rakudai Ninja Rantarō
- Rantaro the Ninja Boy (Nintama Rantarō): Anime series for young children about Rantarou, his friends and teachers at a ninja school
- Samurai Legend (Kaze no Sho): Historical manga by Jiro Taniguchi
- Sarutobi Sasuke: Manga by Shigeru Sugiura
- Sasuga no Sarutobi: TV series and comedy manga by Fujihiko Hosono about a ninja high school
- Science Ninja Team Gatchaman (Kagaku Ninja Tai Gatchaman): Five young International Science Organization operatives, dressed like birds and trained in the ninja arts
- Senran Kagura: Anime version of the video game
- Shinobu Kokoro: Hidden Heart
- Shinobi Life
- Shinobi no Kuni, based on a novel by Wada Ryou.
- Shōnen Jiraiya: manga by Shigeru Sugiura
- Shōnen Ninja Kaze no Fujimaru
- Tail of the Moon (Tsuki no Shippo): A young ninja-in-training seeks to marry in order to bear a child for the sake of her family.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Legend of the Supermutants: Anime version of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
- Tenshi wa Maiorita - Kunoichi Ibun: Historical manga series by Ryoichi Ikegami.
- The Yagyu Ninja Scrolls (Y+M): Historical fantasy manga series by Basilisk author Segawa Masaki
- Zannen Kunoichi Den: manga series.
- Zanpei Kumotori: manga by Takao Saito.
Sanpei Shirato has written ninja-themed manga, including Akame – The Red Eyes, Band of Ninja (Ninja Bugeicho) (later adapted into an anime film), Kaze no Ishimaru, Ninpou Hiwa, Ookami Kozou, Ninja Senpuu, The Legend of Kamui and Watari (later adapted into the live-action film Watari, the Ninja Boy).
The following stories contain a ninja character, but are not ninja-themed:
- Afro Samurai: One of Afro's personalities is Ninja Ninja.
- Ai Kora: Kirino Ootori comes from a ninja family, and supporting characters Ai Hagidzuka and Kunoichi Awayuki practice ninjutsu.
- Angel Blade: Hentai (adult) OVA series
- Bastard!!: Ninja Master Gara
- Blade of the Immortal: Master Sōri and his female students, Meguro and Tanpopo, in the final story arcs
- Chōdenji Machine Voltes V: Megumi Oka, the only female member of the Voltes V Team, is a ninja.
- Demon King Daimao: Female characters are involved with the rival Koga and Iga ninja clans.
- Dragon Ball: Anthropomorphic ninja dog Shu and the six Murasaki brothers
- Erotic Torture Chamber: Hentai anime OVA series
- Fatal Fury: The Motion Picture and Fatal Fury 2: The New Battle: Two anime films based on the video-game series with the ninja Mai Shiranui
- Gin Tama; Sarutobi Ayame, Jiraia's and Tsukuyo's Hyakka team and the Shinobi Five (Hattori Zenzou, Gou, Shuwa, Wakikaoru and Matsuo)
- Ginga: Nagareboshi Gin, Ginga Legend Weed and Kacchū no Senshi Gamu.
- Hakodate Youjin Buraichou Himegami
- Haō Taikei Ryū Knight
- Is This a Zombie?: Seraphim is a vampire ninja who lives with the main character.
- Kanokon: Ren and Ai
- Kaze ga Gotoku
- Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple: Shigure Kousaka is a weapons master who uses ninja weapons.
- Kōtarō Makaritōru!
- Labyrinth of Flames (Honoo no Labyrinth)
- Millennium Actress
- Mirmo! (Wagamama Fearī Mirumo de Pon!): Yashichi, Yamane and Nezumi
- Musashi Gundoh
- Nagasarete Airantou: Several of the island girls practice ninjutsu.
- Negima!: Magister Negi Magi: Kaede Nagase practices ninjutsu.
- Outlaw Star: "Twilight" Suzuka is a ninja assassin.
- Pyu to Fuku! Jaguar: Hammer, a bumbling ninja
- Rurouni Kenshin: Manga and TV series featuring the Oniwabanshu ninja group, which includes Shinomori Aoshi and Makimachi Misao
- Sailor Victory: Comedy OAV series about a team of policewomen using ninja robots
- Samurai Deeper Kyo: Sarutobi Sasuke, a member of Sanada Yukimura's ninja group
- Samurai Spirits
- Short-Tempered Melancholic (Kanshakudama no Yuutsu)
- Soar High! Isami
- Soul Eater: Students Black Star and Tsubaki practice ninjutsu.
- Sgt. Frog (Sergeant Keroro): Dororo and Koyuki are skilled in ninjutsu.
- Transformers: The Headmasters: Sixshot is portrayed as a ninja.
- Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle: Kurogane is a ninja in the main group who travels to parallel worlds.
Supporting ninja appearances include Ah! Itoshi no Banchousama (Hirayama Hayaka's ninja bodyguard), Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo (OVER's Ninja Assassin Corp and the Ultimate Five Assassins), Code Geass (Sayoko Shinozaki), Cutey Honey, Dinosaur King (episode "Ninja Nightmare"), F-Zero: GP Legend (Dream), Hero Tales, Hunter x Hunter (Hanzo and Machi), Hyper Police (Kasumi), Kamen no Maid Guy (ninja maids Shizuku and Tsurara), King Arthur, Kinnikuman (the Ninja), Kirby: Right Back at Ya! (Kirby becomes a ninja and works with Benikage and Yamikage in the episode "Visiting Ninja, Benikage!"), Kotetsu no Daibouken (Kagari), Lone Wolf and Cub, Machine Robo: Battle Hackers, Magical Nyan Nyan Taruto (Rakugan), Magical Princess Minky Momo ("Ninja Arrived! Momo is Ninja"), Mega Man Star Force (the Tribe-On transformation Green Ninja), Metal Fighter Miku ("Pretty Four vs The Lady Ninjas"), Miami Guns, My-HiME/My-Otome (Akira Okuzaki), Nagasarete Airantou (Mikoto), Oh My Goddess! (Marller's ninja trio), Planetes (Tanabe's neighbors in "The Lunar Flying Squirrels"), the Pokémon series and Pokémon: The Electric Tale of Pikachu (Aya, Koga-Kyō and Janine-Anzu), PQ Angels, Raimuiro Ryuukitan X (Kasuri Hattori), Ranma 1/2 (Konatsu, Sasuke Sarugakure, and Shirokuro), Saber Marionette, Sailor Moon (the villain of the week Oniwabandana), Sakura Wars, Samurai Champloo ("Bogus Booty" and "Baseball Blues"), Samurai Girl: Real Bout High School, Sengoku Collection (Kotaro Fuuma), Sonic X (the E-91 Lady Ninja and Espio the Chameleon), Sorcerer Hunters, The King of Braves GaoGaiGar (Yūsha Ō GaoGaiGā) (Volfogg), Those Who Hunt Elves, Tower of Etruria (Palmyra), Ultraman (Alien Baltan), Yami to Bōshi to Hon no Tabibito, Yakitate! Japan ("Nin Nin Nin!! My Way of Ninja!"), Yoshimune (Kunoichi) and YuYu Hakusho (Team Shadow Channelers).
Several paramilitary, police and militia groups use the names "Ninja" or "Ninjas":
- The Santomean special-police force of the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe, officially known as the Emergency Police, are popularly known as Ninjas.
- Rebels in the Pool Region of the Republic of the Congo called themselves Ninja.
- The Red Berets, a Croatian Serb rebel paramilitary group of Dragan Vasiljković based in Knin, Croatia, called themselves "Kninjas". During the early 1990s, the Kninjas were the subject of a Serbian comic-book series.
- Although some death squads active during the Indonesian occupation of East Timor called themselves "Ninja", the name was apparently borrowed from film rather than the Japanese model. "Ninja" gangs were also active elsewhere in Indonesia.
- During the Algerian Civil War, the government's commando units were known as "Ninja" because of their black hoods.
- The FBI's Hostage Rescue Team have been nicknamed "Ninjas".
In addition to video games, several game-development companies use "ninja" in their name: Ninja Studio, Ninja Theory, Ninjaforce, NinjaKiwi, and Team Ninja. In massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs), "ninja", "loot ninja" or "ninja looter" pejoratively describes a player who has stolen something from another player.
Ninja-themed role-playing games (RPGs) include:
- Bushido: A role-playing game set in feudal Japan, it includes the supplement Ninja – Shadows Over Nippon.
- Choose Your Own Adventure: There are ninja characters in several gamebooks in the series: Secret of the Ninja (#66), Return of the Ninja (#92), The Lost Ninja (#113), Ninja Cyborg (#155) and Ninja Avenger (#179).
- Feng Shui
- Hero System: Includes the Ninja Hero gamebook.
- Legend of the Five Rings: Set in a world resembling feudal Japan, it includes the sourcebook Way of the Ninja.
- Dungeons & Dragons: Ninja is a character class first appearing in the 1985 first-edition supplement, Oriental Adventures. Test of the Ninja is an AD&D gamebook. The Ninja class was added to edition 3.5 in Complete Adventurer.
- Ninja Burger: Three editions and a card game based on the website
- Ninjas and Superspies: Modern setting
- Queen's Blade: Two series of erotic gamebooks featuring the ninja Shizuka and video-game ninja such as Mai Shiranui, Kasumi and Taki in Queen's Gate.
- Rifts: The Mystic Ninja and Ninja Jucier character classes were introduced in the book, Rifts World Book 8: Japan.
- Street Fighter: The Storytelling Game
- Sengoku: Samurai game set in 16th-century Japan which includes the sourcebook, Shinobi, Shadows of Nihon
- Spycraft: Modern espionage game with a ninja character class in the campaign setting World On Fire
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles & Other Strangeness: Game by Palladium Books based on the Ninja Turtles
- The Way of the Tiger: Ninja-themed series of gamebooks, set in a fantasy world
Ninja ara also featured in collectible card games such as Legend of the Five Rings CCG, Magic: The Gathering (where the ability Ninjutsu was introduced in the set Betrayers of Kamigawa) and Mortal Kombat Kard Game, and in some miniature wargaming games, such as Heroscape.
Ninja-themed websites include:
- Ask A Ninja: Series of podcasts where a ninja answers questions about ninja
- Ikenhisu: Live-action web series
- Ninja Burger: Humor website, RPG, card game and book in which ninja run a fast-food delivery service
- Ninja Spirit: Series of short martial-arts parody videos
- Ninjai: The Little Ninja: Flash animation
- Ninja the Mission Force: Comedy series
- No Need for Bushido: Webcomic
- One Warm Night: Web TV series
- Pucca: Flash-animated Korean media franchise which includes a book and TV series
- Real Ultimate Power: Humour website created by Robert A. Hamburger, a 13-year-old character
- The Adventures of Dr. McNinja: Webcomic about an Irish doctor ninja obsessed with Batman
- TIN The Incompetent Ninja: Webcomic series
- Vexika: Live-action web series.
- White Ninja: Webcomic part of the National Lampoon Humor Network
- Zombies vs. Ninjas: Web cartoon series by Shut Up! Cartoons
In information technology, "cyber ninja" are sophisticated counter-hackers.
Ninja-themed novels include:
- American Chillers and Magic Tree House series: New York Ninjas and Night of the Ninjas
- Brett Wallace: Ninja Master: Eight-book series by Wade Barker (Richard Meyers)
- Demon King Daimao: Light novels by Shotaro Mizuki, with girls representing the rival Koga and Iga ninja clans; adapted into anime and manga series
- The Diamond Chariot: Erast Fandorin learns ninjutsu in Japan.
- Fukurō no Shiro by Ryotaro Shiba, who also wrote a collection of short stories (Saigo no Igamono)
- Kage Kara Mamoru!: Series of light novels adapted into manga and anime series
- The Kouga Ninja Scrolls (Kōga Ninpōchō): Novel by Futaro Yamada about two rival ninja clans, the Iga and Kouga; adapted into manga and anime series and a live-action film
- Tulku, a Tale of Modern Ninja: Novel by American ninjutsu practitioner Stephen K. Hayes
- Kamui: Series of five novels by Tetsu Yano, later adapted in manga, anime and live-action formats
- Ninja (Serbian: Ninđa or Nindža) was a series of more than 150 pulp novels, mostly written by Brana Nikolić alias Derek Finegan, published in Yugoslavia 1983-1998
- Ninja's Revenge and The Bamboo Bloodbath by Piers Anthony
- Mirror Friend, Mirror Foe: Novel by Robert Asprin and George Takei, featuring a future ninja clan member
- The Ninja: Thriller by Eric Van Lustbader featuring a half-Japanese, half-white character who received ninjutsu training in his youth; followed by The Miko, White Ninja, The Kaisho, Floating City and Second Skin
- The Ninja Murders: Historical novel by Andrew B. Suhrer
- Ninja Slayer: Series of Japanese cyberpunk novels by "Bradley Bond", later adapted into manga and anime series
- Not for Glory: Space opera novel by Joel Rosenberg about a mercenary Jewish-Japanese tribe which practices ninjutsu
- Sanada Ten Braves (Sanada Jūyūshi): Meiji legend, first published in novel form in 1912 during the Taishō period
- Shinobi no Mono: Series of novels by Tomoyoshi Murayama about the life of Ishikawa Goemon. During the 1960s, it was adapted into a series of films about Goemon and other historical ninja.
- Tales of the Otori: The Tribe consists of five ninja families with powers.
- Tsuma-wa, Kunoichi: Historical novel
In the Marvel Universe, ninjas have been heroes and villains. Examples include Spider-Man's foe White Ninja, X-Men members Psylocke, Revanche and supporting character Yukio, Ghost Rider's foes Deathwatch and Death Ninja, Wolverine's mentor Ogun, Hawkeye (as Ninja Ronin), the Punisher's friend Katherine Yakamoto (from Shadowmasters), and Pacific Overlords operative Kuroko (Aya Komatsu). In the Marvel Mangaverse, Spider-Man is the last member of a ninja clan. A sinister ninja cult, the Hand, appears in X-Men and Daredevil. The cult and its associates were responsible for the martial training of Psylocke, Elektra, Daredevil, Black Tarantula, Kitty Pryde, Lady Bullseye and Wolverine. The Hand's heroic counterpart is The Chaste, which struggles with its Korean offshoot the True Believers (including Dragonfly Meiko Yin).
Characters with mystical, superhuman martial-arts abilities attributed to ninja appear in the DC Universe. Bruce Wayne received ninja training prior to becoming Batman. Another character portrayed similarly to a ninja is master martial artist and assassin Lady Shiva; Shiva killed Armless Master, who trained Catwoman and Hellhound. One alternative-universe comic substitutes Batman with a Japanese female ninja named Komori (Bat). An alternative version of Robin, Tengu, was raised by Cat-Ninja (Catwoman) in feudal Japan. DC's The New 52 introduced Kunoichi, a member of the Blackhawks.
In the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT) series, the main characters and many of their friends and foes are ninja, mainly from the Foot Clan (a pastiche of Marvel's group, the Hand): Donatello, Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael, Splinter, Shredder and Karai.
The comic version of G.I. Joe has featured more ninja than the cartoon series. Story arcs involved Scarlett, Snake Eyes, Storm Shadow, Jinx, Kamakura, Firefly and the Arashikage ninja clan, an extended family of ninja characters. Cobra Commander's son, Billy Kessler, and the shape-shifter Zartan also received ninja training from the Arashikage clan and their associates.
Other ninja-themed comics include:
- Blade for Barter
- Cowboy Ninja Viking
- Half Past Danger
- Jetta: Tales of the Toshigawa
- Kabuki: Series about a member of a government-backed circle of masked, costumed female assassins in near-future Japan
- Mail Order Ninja
- Mortal Kombat: Series based on the video-game series of the same name with Jade, Kitana, Mileena, Reptile, Scorpion and Sub-Zero
- Ninja: Series published from 1986 to 1989 in 40 episodes in Yugoslavia
- Ninja Boy
- Ninja Funnies
- Ninja High School: Ninja-themed, comedy series
- Nth Man: The Ultimate Ninja: An American ninja during World War III
- Pirates Vs. Ninjas
- Samurai's Blood
- Shi: Series about a modern war between descendants of medieval Japanese warrior monks
- Sin City: Noir series with Miho
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turkeys: Dean Rankine's parody of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for The Beano
- Whisper: Series by Steven Grant about a modern female ninja.
- Zen the Intergalactic Ninja
Ninja have supporting roles in Karate Kommandos, Lucha Libre Les Naufragés d'Ythaq, Masters of the Universe (Ninjor), Rebirth (the hero's ally, Eiji Inaba), Sam Noir (villains), Scott Pilgrim (Roxanne "Roxie" Richter), Spike: Shadow Puppets, Sonic the Hedgehog (Uma Arachnis and the Arachne), The Order of the Stick (Therkla and others), The Tick (Oedipus), and Usagi Yojimbo (ninja of the Neko, Mogura and Komori clans, including Kashira Chizu).
Several musicians and bands have the word "ninja" in their names:
- Ninja Crew
- Ninja High School
- Ninja Sarasalo
- Shinobi Ninja
- Twelve Foot Ninja
- Vanilla Ninja
- Ninja Sex Party
A number of titles include "ninja" or "kunoichi":
- Club Ninja (album by Blue Öyster Cult)
- Camouflage Ninjas (single by Killarmy)
- DANGEROUS Kunoichi (mini-album by Akashic)
- Deadly Lethal Ninja Assassin (single by In Nothing We Trust)
- Ninja (debut album by Christina Aguilar)
- Ninja Jane (album by Zola Turn)
- NINJA (collaborative album by Nine Inch Nails, Jane's Addiction and Street Sweeper Social Club)
- Shinobi vs. Dragon Ninja (debut single of Lostprophets)
- Ninja (a single by Skindred)
Songs with "ninja" in their titles include "Deadly Lethal Ninja Assassin" by Reuben (on We Should Have Gone To University), "Hoodie Ninja" by mc chris (on mc chris is dead), "Imaginary Ninjas" by Vince Dicola (on Falling off a Clef), "Inner Ninja" by Classified (on Classified), "Ninja Goon" by Gruvis Malt (on Sound Soldiers), "Ninja Hi-skool" by Bis (on Play Some Real Songs: the Live Album), "We Are Ninja" by Frank Chickens (on We Are Frank Chickens), "Ninja Highschooool" by Peelander-Z (on P-Pop-High School), "Ninja Rap" by Vanilla Ice (on the TMNT II soundtrack), "Ninja Step" by RZA (on the Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai soundtrack), "Ninja Quiet" by Marco Beltrami (on World War Z: Music from the Motion Picture), "Supa Ninjaz" by Method Man (on The Pillage), and "This Secret Ninja" by AFI (on Very Proud of Ya). Ninja Tune is a London-based independent record label. Built by Ninjas is a music video production group formed by Jaret Reddick and Heath Balderston. Fans of the rap group Insane Clown Posse, known as juggalos, sometimes refer to themselves as "ninja".
Ninja appear in the music video for the Presidents of the United States of America's song, "Peaches". Cheryl Cole dressed as a female ninja and performed with a group of similarly-dressed dancers in the TV special, Cheryl Cole's Night In. Members of Momoiro Clover Z dressed as ninja for the music video for "D' no Junjō". Rika Adachi performed in a music video based on a song from Naruto.
According to Indeed.com, there was a 7,000-percent increase in the number of job listings with the word "ninja" from 2006 to 2012. A former Russian soldier who committed robberies in Italy in black attire and a bow was called a "Russian ninja" by the BBC. The video-game series Tenchu was adapted for the Japanese stage. In 2006, Miss Japan Kurara Chibana appeared in a ninja-samurai costume for the Miss Universe competition. Goth Ninja, a type of Japanese street fashion, became popular in 2009.
Products named for ninja include:
- Ninja-IDE, a cross-platform integrated development environment
- Fuwa Maru, "ninja snacks" by Tohato
- Lego Ninja Lego bricks, followed by Lego Ninjago
- Lego Minifigures series one includes a ninja mini-figure.
- Liquid Ninja, an energy drink
- N.I.N.J.A. MITES, an Italian bootleg keshi
- Ninja, a series of sport bikes by Kawasaki
- Ninja, a brand of food processors manufactured by Euro-Pro
- Ninja, a brand of web tools.
- Ninja 4WD, a competition buggy by Tokyo Marui
- Ninja Blocks, a sensor-control system
- Ninja Paintball, a brand of paintball accessories
- Nodal Ninja, a photographic-equipment manufacturer
- Stage Ninja, a brand of music accessories
Other products are CardNinja, a wallet phone case; Majestouch NINJA Tenkeyless, a computer keyboard from Diatec Corp; Modela Ninja Pibow, an enclosure for the Raspberry Pi computer; Ninja Driver, a USB stick wrap; Ninja Flex, a safety glove; NINJA Plus, a CPU cooler by the Japanese company Scythe; Ninja Remote, a television-control device and IR jammer and SwimmingNinja, a swimbait lure.
In software, CartNinja is a browser application; Ninja Email Security is the former name of the VIPRE Email Security for Exchange antivirus and antispam filter; Ninja Lite is a video telephony program, and Photo Ninja is a RAW converter program.
Iga F.C. Kunoichi is a Japanese L. League women's association football team. The New Haven Ninjas are an American football team in New Haven, Connecticut. The American Ninja is the stage name of wrestler Brian Adams, and the Black Ninja is the stage name of wrestler Cocoa Samoa. The Canadian NINJAs are a professional wrestling tag team. "Ninja" is a nickname of Brazilian MMA fighter Murilo Rua, and "The Ninja" is the nickname of Filipino boxer Bert Batawang. Ninja Chops wrestles in the Naked Women's Wrestling League. Super Ninja is a ring name of several professional wrestlers, including Keiji Mutoh and Rip Oliver.
Non-anime, ninja-themed TV series include:
- Blood of the Samurai: The Series (2004) and Ninja EX (2004–2005): Indie action series and its spin-off martial-arts comedy series
- Bounty Hunter (Shokin Kasegi) (1975)
- G.I. Joe: Four cartoons (G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero 1985 and 1989 series, G.I. Joe Extreme and G.I. Joe: Sigma 6)
- Fūma no Kojirō (2007)
- Henshin Ninja Arashi (1972–1973): Edo-period henshin series based on the manga of the same name
- Kaiketsu Lion-Maru (1972–1973) and Fuun Lion-Maru (1973)
- Kurama Tengu: Series running for over a half-century, with nine actors playing the title role as of 2008
- Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu: Series about six teenage ninja, one of whom is a sentient "nindroid"
- Lone Wolf and Cub/Iron Samurai (Kozure Ōkami) (1973–1976)
- Majin Hunter Mitsurugi: Tokusatsu series set in the Tokugawa era
- Masked Ninja Red Shadow (Kamen no Ninja Aka-Kage) (1967–1968): Its footage was used in The Magic Sword of Watari.
- The Master (1984): Action-adventure series about John Peter McAllister, an older American veteran and ninja master who returned to the United States
- Mito Kōmon Gaiden Kagerō Ninpō-chō (1995): Ninja spinoff of Mito Kōmon
- Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm: Animated version of the video-game series, with Kitana in a lead role
- Mortal Kombat: Legacy (2011–)
- Ninja Captor (1976–1977)
- Ninpō Kagerō Giri (1972)
- Ōedo Sōsamō (1970–1992)
- Phantom Agents (Ninja Butai Gekkō) (1964–1966): Action series about a group of ninja agents working for the Japanese government
- Pucca: A ninja boy, Garu, is the love interest of the series' main character; his nemesis, Tobe, is also a ninja.
- Rambo and the Forces of Freedom: Rambo's ally (White Dragon) and his enemy (Black Dragon)
- Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja (2012–2015)
- Raven (1993–1994)
- The Samurai (Onmitsu Kenshi) (1962–1965): Jidaigeki series with Tombei the Mist (an Iga ninja) as the hero's sidekick and many ninja villains
- Samurai Girl (2008)
- Sasuke (1997-): Ninja-themed obstacle course show
- Sekai Ninja Sen Jiraiya (1988-1989): Part of Toei's Metal Heroes tokusatsu series
- Shadow Warriors (Kage no Gundan) (1980), Shadow Warriors II (Kage no Gundan II) (1981-1982), Shadow Warriors III (Kage no Gundan III) (1982), Shadow Warriors IV (Kage no Gundan IV) (1985)
- Shōgun Iemitsu Shinobi Tabi (1990–1993)
- Shōgun no Onmitsu! Kage Jūhachi (1996)
- Shuriken School: Cartoon about a ninja school
- Sukeban Deka III: Shōjo Ninpō-chō Denki (1986–1987)
- Supah Ninjas (2011–2013)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The 1980s, the 2000s and the 2010s cartoons and a live-action TV series
- Tsuma-wa, Kunoichi (2014-2015)
Ninja-themed Super Sentai and Power Rangers shows include Ninja Sentai Kakuranger, Ninpū Sentai Hurricaneger and Shuriken Sentai Ninninger; footage from Kakuranger was used in season three of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Hurricaneger was adapted into Power Rangers Ninja Storm, and Ninninger was adapted to Power Rangers Ninja Steel and Power Rangers Super Ninja Steel. Ninja villains appear in other Super Sentai series, such as GoGo Sentai Boukenger (Negative Syndicate's Dark Shadow clan: Gekkou, Yaiba and Shizuka), Power Rangers: Operation Overdrive (Miratrix and other Kamdor henchmen), Hyakujuu Sentai Gaoranger (Ninja Org Duke Dorodoro; Onikage in Power Rangers: Wild Force), Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger (Dora Ninja; Dark Warrior in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers season one), and Mahou Sentai Magiranger (Kirikage).
Ninja characters appeared in the live-action series Arrow ("League of Assassins"), Baretta ("The Ninja"), Big Wolf on Campus ("Play It Again, Samurai"), Castle ("The Way of the Ninja"), Charmed ("Awakened"), Criminal Minds ("True Night"), Danger Theatre ("Lethal Luau"), Dude, What Would Happen ("Ninja Slicing"), Knight Rider (1982) ("Knight of the Rising Sun"), Kyojuu Tokusou Juspion (the Five Space Ninjas), Kung Fu ("The Assassin"), Loiter Squad, Lost Girl ("Big in Japan"), Magnum P.I. ("The Arrow That is Not Aimed"), Martial Law ("Bad Seed") and ("This Shogun For Hire"), Mito Kōmon (Tsuge no Tobizaru and Kagerō Ogin), Mortal Kombat: Konquest (alternative versions of Kitana, Mileena, Reptile, Scorpion and Sub-Zero), My Name is Earl ("Creative Writing"), Quincy, M.E. ("Touch of Death"), She Spies ("Fondles"), Shōgun, Simon & Simon ("Opposites Attack"), Space Sheriff Shaider (Girls' Army), That '70s Show ("Jackie Moves On"), The Greatest American Hero ("Thirty Seconds Over Little Tokyo"), Gridman the Hyper Agent (Shinobilar), Verbotene Liebe.
They appeared in the non-anime cartoon series The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius ("Crouching Jimmy, Hidden Sheen"), Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog ("Robo-Ninja"), The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 ("Sneaky Lying Cheating Giant Ninja Koopas"), American Dragon: Jake Long (Huntsman and Rose), Batman Beyond (Curaré of the League of Assassins), Batman: The Animated Series (Kyodai Ken in "Night of the Ninja" and "Day of the Samurai"), Beware the Batman ("Family" and "Sacrifice"), Black Dynamite ("Just Beat It or Jackson Five Across Yo' Eyes"), Chop Socky Chooks (Ninja Chimps), Karate Kommandos (Super Ninja), Code Monkeys ("Revenge of Matsui"), Codename: Kids Next Door (Teen Ninjas), Conan the Adventurer ("Shadow Walkers", "Dragon's Breath" and "Sword, Sai and Shuriken"), Danny Phantom (Bertrand), Digimon Savers (Falcomon), Eon Kid (Black Beauty and her ninja robot army), Family Guy (in "Wasted Talent" and "I Take Thee Quagmire"), Happy Tree Friends (Generic Tee Ninjas), Jackie Chan Adventures (the Shadowkhan), Johnny Test (one of Johnny's transformation is Ninja Johnny), Kim Possible (the Yamanouchi ninja school), The Legend of Prince Valiant ("The Ghost"), The Legend of Zelda (Sing), The Penguins of Madagascar ("Mental Hen/Siege the Day" and "Street Smarts/Nighty Night Ninja"), Phineas and Ferb ("What a Croc!/Ferb TV"), Planet Sketch (Ninja Handyman), The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest ("Night of the Zinja"), Robot Chicken, Road Rovers ("Let Sleeping Dogs Lie"), Samurai Jack ("Samurai versus Ninja"), The Simpsons (in "The Telltale Head" Bart Simpson disguises as a ninja; in "Treehouse of Horror XVIII" one of the aliens is dressed as a ninja, in "Husbands and Knives" the Comic Book Guy has ninja weapons, and in "Yokel Chords" Bart plays a spoof video game with a female ninja), Skunk Fu (Ninja Monkeys), South Park ("Good Times with Weapons" and "Fantastic Easter Special"), Stroker and Hoop ("Ninja Worrier" and "Chopping Spree"), Superman: The Animated Series (Death Fist Ninja), Teen Titans (in "Masks", Beast Boy has a video game "Super Ninja Showdown 8"), The Transformers (Greatshot, Nightbird and Prowl), The Venture Bros. (Otaku Senzuri), Wolverine and the X-Men and Xiaolin Showdown (Tubbimura).
Ninja appeared in commercials for Alior Sync bank, Anime Network, Bombay Sapphire, Clamato, FedEx, Free Realms, Honda Civic Si, Mitsubishi UFJ Securities, MyHome.ie, Nicorette, Nike, Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, Oregon Lottery, Pepsi, Pop-Tarts, and Sure.
Iga Ueno Ninja Festa, the annual ninja festival in Iga in the former province of Iga, has had ninja-inspired performances, competitions and opportunities to practice ninja skills since 1964. Iga also has the Iga-ryu Ninja Museum, ninja-style restaurants and cafes. In the United States, ninja-themed restaurants include Ninja New York in New York City and the Flying Ninja sushi bar in San Francisco. There are American roller coasters named Ninja, such as Ninja in California and The Ninja in Missouri.
Other ninja attractions in Japan include the Koga Ninja Village and Kogaryu Ninjutsu Yashiki (Ninja Houses) in Koga-gun, Shiga Prefecture, the Togakushi Ninja Village for children, the Togakushi Ninpo Museum and Karakuri Yashiki (Ninja House) in Togakushi, Nagano, the Edo Wonderland theme park in Nikkō, Tochigi and the restaurants Men no Sato and Ninja Akasaka in Tokyo and Ninja Kyoto in Kyoto.
Businesses include Ninja Jump, an American company producing licensed inflatables; Web Ninja, an Australian e-commerce website-design team; Ninja Message, an Australian direct-to-voicemail service; Ninja Tracking Systems, a British GPS developer; Ninja Polish, an online nail-polish retailer; Ninja Pyrate, a fire-show-equipment workshop; Crystal Ninja, a crystal design studio; Lactose Ninja, a manufacturer of lactose-intolerance remedies and the Ninja Company, a Eurasian toy manufacturer.
1998 East Java ninja scare
The 1998 East Java ninja scare was an outbreak of mass hysteria in East Java, Indonesia, in which the local population believed they were being targeted by sorcerers known as ninja, who were blamed for mysterious killings of religious leaders by assassins dressed in black. As many as 150-300 “sorcerers” were killed between February and October, with the most deaths occurring between August and September.
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This article's further reading may not follow Wikipedia's content policies or guidelines. Please improve this article by removing less relevant or redundant publications with the same point of view; or by incorporating the relevant publications into the body of the article through appropriate citations. (May 2018) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
- Adams, Andrew (1970), Ninja: The Invisible Assassins, Black Belt Communications, ISBN 978-0-89750-030-2
- Bunch, Bryan H.; Hellemans, Alexander (2004), The history of science and technology: a browser's guide to the great discoveries, inventions, and the people who made them, from the dawn of time to today, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, ISBN 978-0-618-22123-3
- Chamberlain, Basil Hall (2005), The Kojiki: records of ancient matters, Tuttle Publishing, ISBN 978-0-8048-3675-3
- Crowdy, Terry (2006), The enemy within: a history of espionage, Osprey Publishing, ISBN 978-1-84176-933-2
- Deal, William E. (2007), Handbook to Life in Medieval and Early Modern Japan, Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0-195331264
- Draeger, Donn F.; Smith, Robert W. (1981), Comprehensive Asian fighting arts, Kodansha, ISBN 978-0-87011-436-6
- Fiévé, Nicolas; Waley, Paul (2003), Japanese capitals in historical perspective: place, power and memory in Kyoto, Edo and Tokyo, Routledge, ISBN 978-0-7007-1409-4
- Friday, Karl F. (2007), The first samurai: the life and legend of the warrior rebel, Taira Masakado, Wiley, ISBN 978-0-471-76082-5
- Howell, Anthony (1999), The analysis of performance art: a guide to its theory and practice, Routledge, ISBN 978-90-5755-085-0
- Green, Thomas A. (2001), Martial arts of the world: an encyclopedia, Volume 2: Ninjutsu, ABC-CLIO, ISBN 978-1-57607-150-2
- Kawaguchi, Sunao (2008), Super Ninja Retsuden, PHP Research Institute, ISBN 978-4-569-67073-7
- McCullough, Helen Craig (2004), The Taiheiki: A Chronicle of Medieval Japan, Tuttle Publishing, ISBN 978-0-8048-3538-1
- Mol, Serge (2003), Classical weaponry of Japan: special weapons and tactics of the martial arts, Kodansha, ISBN 978-4-7700-2941-6
- Morton, William Scott; Olenik, J. Kenneth (2004), Japan: its history and culture, fourth edition, McGraw-Hill Professional, ISBN 978-0-07-141280-3
- Nihon Hakugaku Kurabu (2006), Unsolved Mysteries of Japanese History, PHP Research Institute, ISBN 978-4-569-65652-6
- Nihon Hakugaku Kurabu (2004), Zuketsu Rekishi no Igai na Ketsumatsu, PHP Research Institute, ISBN 978-4-569-64061-7
- Perkins, Dorothy (1991), Encyclopedia of Japan: Japanese History and Culture, from Abacus to Zori, Facts on File, ISBN 978-0-8160-1934-2
- Ratti, Oscar; Westbrook, Adele (1991), Secrets of the samurai: a survey of the martial arts of feudal Japan, Tuttle Publishing, ISBN 978-0-8048-1684-7
- Reed, Edward James (1880), Japan: its history, traditions, and religions: With the narrative of a visit in 1879, Volume 2, John Murray, OCLC 1309476
- Satake, Akihiro; Yasumada, Hideo; Kudō, Rikio; Ōtani, Masao; Yamazaki, Yoshiyuki (2003), Shin Nihon Koten Bungaku Taikei: Man'yōshū Volume 4, Iwanami Shoten, ISBN 4-00-240004-2
- Takagi, Ichinosuke; Gomi, Tomohide; Ōno, Susumu (1962), Nihon Koten Bungaku Taikei: Man'yōshū Volume 4, Iwanami Shoten, ISBN 4-00-060007-9
- Tatsuya, Tsuji (1991), The Cambridge history of Japan Volume 4: Early Modern Japan: Chapter 9, translated by Harold Bolitho, edited by John Whitney Hall, New York: Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0-521-22355-3
- Teeuwen, Mark; Rambelli, Fabio (2002), Buddhas and kami in Japan: honji suijaku as a combinatory paradigm, RoutledgeCurzon, ISBN 978-0-415-29747-9
- Turnbull, Stephen (2007), Warriors of Medieval Japan, Osprey Publishing, ISBN 978-1-84603-220-2
- Moriyama, T. (1998). "Weekend Adventures Outside of Tokyo", Shufunotomo Co. Ltd., Tokyo Japan, ISBN 4-07-975049-8.
- Frederic, L. (2002). "Japan Encyclopedia", Belknap Harvard, ISBN 0-674-01753-6
- Fujibayashi, Masatake; Nakajima, Atsumi. (1996). Shōninki: Ninjutsu densho. Tokyo: Shinjinbutsu Ōraisha. OCLC 222455224.
- Fujita, Seiko. (2004). Saigo no Ninja Dorondoron. Tokyo: Shinpūsha. ISBN 978-4-7974-9488-4.
- Fukai, Masaumi. (1992). Edojō oniwaban : Tokugawa Shōgun no mimi to me. Tokyo: Chūō Kōronsha. ISBN 978-4-12-101073-5.
- Hokinoichi, Hanawa. (1923–1933). Buke Myōmokushō. Tokyo: Yoshikawa Kōbunkan. OCLC 42921561.
- Ishikawa, Masatomo. (1982). Shinobi no sato no kiroku. Tokyo: Suiyōsha. ISBN 978-4-88066-110-0.
- Mol, Serge (2016). Takeda Shinobi Hiden: Unveiling Takeda Shingen's Secret Ninja Legacy. Eibusha. pp. 1–192. ISBN 978-90-813361-3-0.
- Mol, Serge (2008). Invisible armor: An Introduction to the Esoteric Dimension of Japan’s Classical Warrior Arts. Eibusha. pp. 1–160. ISBN 978-90-8133610-9.
- Nawa, Yumio. (1972). Hisshō no heihō ninjutsu no kenkyū: gendai o ikinuku michi. Tokyo: Nichibō Shuppansha. OCLC 122985441.
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- Watatani, Kiyoshi. (1972). Bugei ryūha hyakusen. Tokyo: Akita Shoten. OCLC 66598671.
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