Those who have the blood of the Karasu Tengu (Crow Goblin) in their veins must forever fight against the powers of darkness. Along with four other holy ninja warriors Genbu (Black Snaky Tortoise), Suzaku (Red Phoenix), Seiryu (Blue Dragon), Byakko (White Tiger), Karasu Tengu Kabuto fights against the evil god Kuroyasha (Black Night Demon) Dôki and his underlings such as Junin-shu (Top Ten Warriors). Their battle continues through generations: in the second volume of the manga, Kabuto's son makes an appearance as the second Karasu Tengu.
The manga has been serialized in Shueisha's Fresh Jump in 1987-1988, and later published in the United States by ComicsOne (as Kabuto), in France by Taifu Comics and in the Republic of China by Tong Li Publishing.
The manga was later adapted into the 39-episode anime series written by Hideki Mitsui, Wataru Takagi and Yoshihisa Araki and directed by Gen Fukuda, Takashi Watanabe and Kazuya Miyazaki (animation director Satoshi Urushihara) in 1990-1991, premiering on NHK BS-2 on July 29, 1990. There were also six special episodes.
The anime was broadcast as Ninja Kabuto by Telecinco in Spain and Televisa Canal 5 in Mexico. Its unofficial English titles include Crow Demon Kabuto, Raven Goblin Kabuto and Raven Tengu Kabuto.
An OVA film, Raven Tengu Kabuto: The Golden-Eyed Beast (鴉天狗カブト 黄金の目のケモノ, Karasu Tengu Kabuto: Ôgon no me no Kemono), was also created by Buichi Terasawa in 1992 (animation director Hisashi Hirai). It was released in the U.S. on VHS as Kabuto the Golden Eye Monster by Central Park Media in 1993.
TV series cast
- Yasunori Matsumoto as Karasu Tengu Kabuto
- Hiromi Tsuru as Suzaku
- Kôzô Shioya as Benitengu Genbu
- Shinya Ōtaki as Jiraiya Byakko
- Megumi Tano as Seiryu
- Kan Tokumaru as Kuroyasha Dôki
- Arisa Andō as Yasha-Hime
- Tomomichi Nishimura as Hiryû / Narrator
- Reizô Nomoto as Jaki
- Ai Orikasa as Kurosaten
- Eken Mine as Byakuryu
- Hideyuki Umezu as Kindoji
- Hiroko Emori as Yashiro
- Hiroya Ishimaru as Ayatsuri Onizo
- Ikuo Nishikawa as Kiganbo
- Issei Futamata as Onizaru
- Isshin Chiba as Chiryû
- Ken Yamaguchi as Fûma Raizô
- Ken'yū Horiuchi as Tenzensei
- Kumiko Takizawa as Oni-Joro
- Mari Maruta as Sayuri
- Masahiro Anzai as Kyoboku Majin
- Narumi Tsunoda as Gran
- Nobuyuki Furuta as Suidoji
- Nobuyuki Hiyama as Tensosei
- Norio Wakamoto as Fūma Kotarō
- Rica Matsumoto as Hanamaru
- Seizō Katō as Radô
- Shigezō Sasaoka as Kutoki
- Takao Ohyama as Yamamoto Kansuke
- Takeshi Watabe as Baiō
- Tetsuya Iwanaga as Rokusharin-Dôji
- Yoshio Kawai as Rokusharin-Dôji
- Yuzuru Fujimoto as Hakurosai Genshu
Theme songs performed by Akira Kushida (opening) and Mika Kaneko (ending).