The Japanese manga and anime series Kochikame by Osamu Akimoto is famous for how prominent and extensive numbers of character appearances contribute to the many chapters created throughout the span of the series.
New characters and guest appearances appear on a frequently consistent basis, dating back to the first batch of chapters published following the first chapter's 1976 serialisation; meanwhile, the main cast of characters faithfully remained the same since their own introductions (plus some changes in personality for several characters).
Kochikame's reuptation is well-known amongst its Japanese fans for its very excessive and unusually large cast of sometimes strange characters who appear, or have appeared, over the course of its long-running serialization. However, in the overall story, only the characters relative to the police force remain prominent and feature regularly.
Relatives, friends, acquiaintances, guest stars and many others tend to contribute the most to the extensive cast, which is very much similar in fashion to the cast of characters from the popular American television cartoon series The Simpsons.
Kameari Kouen-Mae Police Box
Kankichi Ryoutsu (両津 勘吉, Ryoutsu Kankichi)
Voice actor: LaSalle Ishii
The protagonist (and to an extent, anti-hero) of the manga series, often brute but vivacious in nature. Ryotsu remains infamous for his propensity towards making money by whatever means possible, then screwing up midway, with the consequence of becoming indebted towards others - and always at his own expense. Also an avid fan of gambling, Pachinko arcades, cabaret clubs, video games and competitive sport.
Keiichi Nakagawa (中川 圭一, Nakagawa Keiichi)
Voice actor: Mitsuru Miyamoto
Considerably the comic foil of the main cast, as he is always attempting to divert Ryotsu from engaging in irrational or irresponsible behaviour (but for good reason). A rich heir to his father's exteremely wealthy global corporation, Nakagawa is known for his good looks and intricate knowledge on many topics. Skilled at playing the violin, sports, business management and global trends, he also possesses the rare likelihood of going completely insane, either when inebriated or under extreme stress/pressure.
Reiko Katherine Akimoto (秋本・カトリーヌ・麗子, Akimoto Katherine Reiko)
Voice actress: Yumi Morio
Portrayed as an iconic idol of beauty in the series. Reiko is a blonde and busty woman who possesses as much beauty as the does brains - just like Nakagawa, she excels in playing the violin and sports, alongside ballet dancing, cooking, modelling and caring for others. She often attracts male characters in the series, but seems somewhat indifferent to many of them. Kind, rescpecting and feminine in nature, she earns the trust of many characters in the series.
Daijirou Oohara,'"Chief" (大原 大次郎,「部長」, Oohara Daijirou: "Buchou")
Voice actor: Haruki Sayama
The section chief responsible for the police box's management. Ohara is in actuality an understanding, warm and easygoing man, but this persona of his never reveals itself since he's always having to vent his frustration on having to deal with Ryotsu's reckless behaviour. He has interests in practising cultural discipline, Bonsai trees, Kendo, calligraphy and traditional Japanese theatre. In a way, it seems as though he ends up 'fathering' Ryotsu because of the way he always ends up correcting or persuading the latter to change his behaviour and attitudes.
Youichi Terai (寺井 洋一, Terai Youichi) > Marui Yangukan (ヤング館 丸井 Yangukan Marui)
Voice actor: Shouzou Hayashiya
A patrol officer from the same Police Box as the main four, who is much more prominent in the anime series compared to the manga series. Considered to be the more 'neutral' person of the group, Terai is mild-mannered, hardworking and a little sensitive but down-to-earth and realistic. Since Volume 170, his name was officially changed to 'Marui Yangukan (ヤング館 丸井, Yangu-kan Marui) by Ryotsu after testing out ridiculous randomly-assigned 'names' through a children's toy.
Neruo Higurashi (日暮 熱睡男, Higurashi Neruo)
Although a patrol officer for the police force, Higurashi literally does not wake up until one day every four years, in the midst of the latest Summer Olympics. However, he is somehow blessed with a spectacular psychological ability to mind-read the location of all police suspects while awake on this day, contributing to very high arrest records - a skill that is valued highly amongst staff from the police force. (Thus, his continual employment.) His first name can literally translate to mean "Deep-Sleep Man".
Kinji Totsuka (戸塚 金次, Totsuka Kinji)
An ex-appointed patrol officer to the police box. Totsuka made prominent appearances during the early chapters of the Kochikame manga, and only appears in one anime episode. He resembles that of a yakuza member, bearing a scar on his face and tattoo on his back. Though he and Ryotsu got along well in the early manga chapters, a recent character-comeback chapter featuring Totsuka's short return showed indifference and a cold attittude towards Ryotsu (who also shared the same feelings vice-versa).
Dog (犬, Inu)
A male dog with no name, but is always featured within the manga and anime series. He can be seen as rather cheeky but clever at the same time, often causing mishap to Ryotsu, simply for fun.
Kameari HQ / Katstushika HQ / New Katsuhika HQ
Tsurukichi Kamemori (亀森 鶴吉, Kamemori Tsurukichi) > Gomez Tonda (屯田 五目須, Tonda Gomesu)
Voice actor: Eimei Esumi
The police chief for the Katsushika Police HQ, most often referred to as "Shochou", which would mean "Chief of Police". He is often finding himself having to put up with excuses and compromises by Bucho for Ryotsu's misdoings and erratic behaviour which often at times jeopardise the reputation of the police force. He possesses a rather calming and understanding but firm personality with respect to his role, but can be easily tricked at times by Ryotsu's deceiving schemes with his somewhat gullible personality. He can ironically be seen occasionally being distracted from his job pursing his own hobbies, such as viewing men's magazines, eating at his desk or visiting cabaret clubs.
Ai Asato, "Maria" (麻里 愛／マリア Asato Ai, "Maria")
Voice actress: Kaori Asou
Ai, often addressed as 'Maria' by many characters, is a (now) female police officer who sometimes visits the Police Box, famously known for originally being a man who dressed and adopted the convincing bodily/facial features and mannerisms of a woman (which caused cases of major shock for some male characters, particularly when 'accidentally' confronting 'her' nether regions). She officially underwent a sex-change through a magical spell that confined her into the female gender in the manga series, but stays transgendered in the whole anime series. She shows major signs of affection for Ryotsu -even since she was still a man- and easily becomes jealous the moment she happens to find him with another woman.
Hayato Honda (本田 速人, Honda Hayato)
Voice actor: Hiroshi Yanaka
A Police Bike officer of the Riot Squad from the Transport Division. Honda is in reality a very soft, somewhat shy and effeminate man in normal circumstances, addressing Ryotsu as senpai and shows interests in Shojo (girls') manga, cosplaying, pop idols and biking. In the past he has had to deal with a striking number of cases of unrequited love, only being able to get his now-girlfriend Nana after 180 failures. He is victim to a split-personality, where his personalily changes immediately the moment he climbs atop a motorcycle (or any object with handlebars/undergoing high velocity); his face changes, voice deepens, and speech mannerisms change to a rough and intimidating dialect. His father runs a family business bike maintenance workshop.
Saigou Volvo (ボルボ 西郷, Borubo Saigou)
Voice actor: Yuuji Kishi
A robust former green-beret solider with supreme fighting experience following his days with the US Navy. Volvo also has the habit of becoming overtly defensive when hearing slight noises that he perceives as potentially threatening that range from glass being tapped to a nose hair being picked out. He easily nosebleeds upon sighting or touching women -especially his American girlfriend Jody- which may have been the result of staying in the male-dominated army for so long beforehand.
Tatsunosuke Sakonji (左近寺 竜之介, Sakonji Tatsunosuke)
Voice actor: Masami Iwasaki
A police officer who is more often seen with the other policemen -usually Ryotsu, Sakonji and Honda- off duty (in casual wear) than on duty (in uniform). Superbly muscular and tall in appearance, Sakonji is skilled in the Japanese martial art of Judo, but displays a very unhealthy obsession with a fictional female video game character named Saori.
Komachi Ono (小野 小町, Ono Komachi)
Voice actress: Rieko Miura
An anime-only female patrol car police officer with short dark-blue hair, and the companion of Naoko who shows a deep hate for Ryotsu. Between the duo, she has the higher voice and lighter skin tone. She is often putting forward challenges against Ryotsu in the hopes of winning against him, as she absolutely hates losing to his arguments.
Naoko Seisho (清正 奈緒子, Seisho Naoko)
Voice actress: Kanako Mitsuhashi
An anime-only female patrol car police officer with red-tinged brown hair kept into a ponytail, and the companion of Komachi who similarly shares the same deep hate for Ryotsu. She has the deeper voice between the two, and has a slightly darker tan.
Matoi Giboshi (擬宝珠 纏, Giboshi Matoi)
One of the more recently-added Kochikame characters. A female police officer who was soon revealed to be Ryotsu's cousin following her first appearance. Originally raised in Asakusa, Tokyo, Matoi is energetic, high in spirit, tomboyish to an extent and a big fan of festivals - just like Ryotsu. She is also daughter to the owner of a generations-old traditional family Japanese restaurant (Chou Kanda Sushiya), which specialises in local sushi-related dishes and cuisine, to which she is appointed as a waitress.
Haya Isowashi (磯鷲 早矢, Isowashi Haya)
A female police officer more recently added within the series. Haya is skilled and highly intelligent in the realm of Japanese traditions and customs, being the daughter of a very strict, high-status and conservatively Japanese father hailing from Kyoto. She is an expert in archery, and gains much attention and adoration from many male colleagues at the Katsushika Police HQ. Both Ryotsu and Bucho have shown much interest in her, given her adept knowledge in Japanese traditional activities.
Nana Otohime (乙姫 菜々, Otohime Nana)
Honda's current girlfriend, and his subordinate from the Katsushika Police HQ Transport Division. Sweet, compassionate and sensitive in character (almost a mirror of Honda's own persona), she is also a manga author who goes by her own pen name. It is mentioned at one point that she has an alternative name of 'Olive'. She is also one of few characters in the series to possess a non-natural hair colour, sporting a blue-green/aquamarine shade of short hair. Though she tends to be shown to have a sensitive image, it is revealed that she enjoys thrilling carnival rides and was able to easily eat 30 plates of sushi in one go.
Rika Saotome (早乙女 リカ, Saotome Rika)
A manga-only female police officer who possesses an immensely deep hate for Ryotsu and the things that he does. She gets on well with all of her fellow female colleagues, and sometimes suggests to them ways to deal with Ryotsu from potentially butting in or ruining their future event plans.
Masayoshi Houjou (法条 正義, Houjyou Masayoshi) > Zannen Sugoku (凄苦 残念, Sugoku Zannen)
A man of short, stocky build with very absurd facial features that always cause shock or confusion in other characters at first glance, and are the reason he has never been successful in attaining a girlfriend or partner. In spite of his image issues, he is known for his extreme intelligence that covers a huge span of topics, and is apparently easily capable of earning a 100% passing score on virtually any test that he takes. Like Terai, Houjou had also undergone a name change which was officially declared by Ryotsu after the using a children's toy which randomly assigns silly 'names'. Sugoku Zannen would literally translate to mean 'very pitiful', a name which Ryotsu assumes to perfectly describe the situation of Houjou as a character overall.
Youko Sasaki (佐々木 洋子, Sasaki Youko)
Youko is one of the earliest female characters to appear in the manga series, but eventually disappeared save for few cameo appearances, and only made one anime appearance as a main character. She is the daughter of a local tobacco shop owner, and is portrayed as an easygoing and soft, but slightly shy, Japanese girl (later employed by the Katsushika Police HQ as an adult). She used to be seen sometimes hanging out with Ryotsu and Nakagawa. Japanese fans are especially fond of her previous appearances, and some say she should be considered a legit heroine, as she appeared long before Reiko's own introduction into Kochikame, first debuting in volume 2.
Himeka Hinano (雛野 姫香, Hinano Himeka)
A more recent addition to the set cast of the Kochikame manga. Himeka is currently known for her additional job as a maid waitress in a cafe within Tokyo, which some of the main characters sometimes visit. She is an avid cosplayer and tailors her own wardrobe of costumes in her flat.
Metropolian Police Department
Special Detectives Unit
Detective Swimpants (海パン刑事, Kai-Pan Deka)
The head detective of the Special Detectives Unit, famously known for being almost buck-naked, save for his distinguishable black Speedo-style swimpants from which he can take out almost any object imaginable (to the shock and revulsion of others), necktie , long socks, shoes and strapped-on weaponry which wrap around his shoulders and knees. His necktie appears to be the source of his immense strength and, more importantly, lack of shame from exposing his groin during battle scenes against his opponents.
Detective Dolphin (ドルフィン刑事, Dorufin Deka)
The detective thoroughly skilled in water and sea-related means of tracking and catching criminals. He wears only a fundoshi (cloth designed to cover the crotch area), has the word 'MARINE' written across his forehead, long socks, shoes and hat-like object depicting a palm tree atop an island on the top of his bald head. He also carries with him a pipe which he uses to call dolphins where needed.
Detectives Moonlight and Venus (月光刑事, Gekkou Deka), (美茄子刑事, Binasu Deka)
The detective duo who are iconic for their Sailor Moon-derived 'uniform' and sometimes eccentric teenage girl-like personalities. Both are pilots specialised in tracking criminals via plane. Depending on the stage of the investigation, they will resort to changing costumes to suit the situation (done with a special 'transformation ritual'), often to the embarrassment or disgust of other characters.
Tsutenkaku Tower HQ
Haru Midou (御堂 春, Midou Haru)
An extremely energetic policewoman with a tomboyish personality, short blonde hair and immense pride for everything related to her native region of Osaka. Haru's feisty and competitive nature seem to go at odds with Ryotsu despite their similar personalities, but she suddenly succumbs to the good looks of Nakagawa upon sighting him in the Police Box.
Rei Ashihara (芦原 レイ, Ashihara Rei)
Haru's more mild-mannered and reserved but trustworthy companion at Tsutenkaku Tower. Rei is easily recognisable for her long braids of hair and big round glasses.
Shocho Naniwa (浪花 署長, Naniwa Shochou) The Chief of Police at the Tsutenkaku Tower who appears to be a major fan of baseball.
Spark (電極 スパーク, Denkyoku Supaaku)
Rei (電極 冷, Denkyoku Rei)
Plus (+) (電極 ぷらす, Denkyoku Purasu)
Minus (-) (電極 まいなす, Denkyoku Mainasu)
Pulse (P) (電極 ぱるす, Denkyoku Parusu)
Kennosuke (磯鷲 剣之介, Isowashi Kennosuke)
Nitetsu (飛鷹 二徹, Hidaka Nitetsu)
Ukyou (飛鷹 右京, Hidaka Ukyou)
Sakyou (飛鷹 左京, Hidaka Sakyou)
Nikkou and Gekkou (飛鷹 日光, Hidaka Nikkou), (飛鷹 , Hidaka Gekkou)
Chou-Kanda Sushi restaurant
Head Chef (板長, Itachou)
Sanpei (三平, Sanpei)
Kamekichi Kubota (久保田 亀吉, Kubota Kamekichi)
Korosuke Ezaki, "Professor Ezaki" (絵崎 コロ助,「絵崎教授」 Ezaki Korosuke, "Ezaki Kyoujyu")
Voice actor: Takashi Matsuyama
A university professor whose own self-made prototype inventions wind up doing more bad than good in the long run, especially for Ryotsu (as he considers him the guinea pig to each one he makes so far). Very vivacious in the way he presents his inventions, he is also known for quickly running away or escaping the scene without providing antidotes or solutions for his inventions once they begin to falter, making him a troublemaker in a way.
Reiji Shiratori (白鳥 麗次, Shiratori Reiji)
An extremely wealthy man with an overtly confident and somewhat snobbish personality who seems to simply thrive on attention. He is famous for illustrating his wealth by taking and throwing out handfuls of cash into the air from his trenchcoat (to which Ryotsu quickly responds by snatching them at first sight), and continuous failures to win love from Reiko whom he frequently tries to flirt with. Shiratori also seems to be iconic for the way in which he also tilts his head and view others as he speaks.
Jody Karen Bakuryuu (ジョディー・爆竜・カレン, Jyodii Bakuryuu Karen)
Voice actress: Rei Saitou
The daughter of a high-ranking Japanese soldier and American mother who is the current girlfriend of Volvo. Jody is very busty and has long, blonde wavy hair. She is the only character of foreign upbringing who appears the most frequently in the series, sometimes alongside her father. Unlike other characters, she speaks more English but is also fluent enough to communicate in Japanese. Jody seems to be supremely strong and is a skilled fighter due to her experience from participating in both air and naval forces in the US with the help of her father.
God (神, Kami)
God appears as a somewhat satirical representation of Buddha in the world of Kochikame, and is the God that is responsible for recording the good deeds and sins of characters inclusive of Ryotsu himself. In Kochikame's case, he is coloured gold all over, sports a moustache and sometimes displays a 'bull-horns' hand sign with one hand to signify peace.