Maple Town (JP: メイプルタウン物語, Maple Town Stories) is a 1986 children's slice-of-life anime aimed at audiences ages 3-10 years created by television writer Chifude Asakura, directed by Junichi Sato, and produced and animated by the studio Toei Animation.
Set from 1986 to 1987 in an otherwise late 1920s-esque background, the story of the anime begins with its premiere episode, "Welcome to Maple Town", where 8-year-old Patty Rabbit and her family arrive by train to a utopian community of anthropomorphic animals called Maple Town, Canada. Eventually, she befriends 9-year-old Bobby Bear, with their relationship slowly becoming more romantic.
In the subsequent episodes up until the finale, Patty and her friends and family have everyday experiences in the town, whether at school, home, or anywhere within the boundaries of the community. Meanwhile, a villainous wolf bandit named Wilde Wolf tries to disturb the town's peace with his mischievous, unruly schemes, only for them to mostly fail as the townspeople usually interfere.
Main Article: List of Maple Town Episodes
A total of 52 half-hour episodes were produced and aired during the show's run.
Tonka acquired the North American rights to the anime on October 1986. The first 26 episodes from "Welcome to Maple Town" to "The Witch's Castle" were dubbed in English in Q1 1987 by Saban Entertainment and The Maltese Companies. LBS Communications syndicated the series. However, it was originally planned to syndicate 65 episodes. The dub added live-action bookends. It introduces an entirely new theme song and a new human character Mrs. Maple (played by Janice Adams), providing the story's morals at the end of every episode. Its English slogan was "My favorite place to be".
In Japan, it originally ran on TV Asahi from January 19th, 1986 to January 11th, 1987 at 8:30 a.m.
The English dub was broadcast in the United States beginning in April 1987 on select stations such as FOX WNYW (New York City's FOX affiliate) on Channel 5. It also ran on the children's cable channel Nickelodeon from September 1987 to January 1st, 1988. Afterward, it moved to Nickelodeon's preschool block "Nick Jr.", where it ran from January 4th 1988 to September 1st, 1989. In Canada, it aired on YTV on 10 AM from September 1st, 1988 to around 1990.
It was also broadcast in such countries as France (as Les Petits Malins, meaning The Crafty), the Netherlands, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Italy, and Spain in its respective language dubs.
Maple Town had a successor which continues from the original called Palm Town, which ran from January 18th to December 27th of 1987. Reruns went well into 1990. Unlike its prequel, it was never dubbed into English for unknown reasons. Patty is the only character from Maple Town to appear, as Palm Town cut the rest of the cast from the original, but they make cameo appearances as background characters from time to time.
The following is a compilation of international opening sequences. Most share the original Japanese opening's animation, but the beginning and end were replaced with the American animated segment of the toy commercials for the English dub. Each opening has a distinct theme song, but some have a dubbed version of the original Japanese theme song.