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Animation / Yamucha's-Kung Fu Academy

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Yamucha's-Kung Fu Academy (饮茶之功夫学园) is a Chinese-Taiwanese comedy animated series created and produced by Hong Ying Animation. While this studio is best known for animating outsourced cartoons, Yamucha's is one of the few locally-produced works they maintain.

With many characters being food, the show focuses on the young martial arts students Miko and Nao and their training at a renowned but antiquated academy in Yincha Town, as well as their friends and the villains they face, including a group of idiotic squid thieves. The show premiered on New Years Day 2007 on China's CCTV network and was moderately successful and well-received with a total of 208 episodes. It is available on Chinese streaming sites including iQIYI.

Yamucha's started as a group of fifteen web shorts released in 2004 which lack dialogue.note  These shorts spoofed Chinese cinema (including wuxia), Jurassic Park and Titanic.note  The TV show reimagined most of the main characters as students or staff of a kung fu academy.

The series would receive a sequel called "飲茶關愛生命" (something like Yamucha's - Caring About Life) in the early 2010's, with many human characters joining the food ones.

While the TV show may lack an English dub, it was given an English trailer where the show is titled The Gongfu Class of Yincha.

China Liaoning has episodes of both this and its sequel here.

Named after the Cantonese custom of dim sum and tea consumption known as yum cha, it has no relation with a Dragon Ball character.

Yamucha's provides examples of:

  • Age Lift: Rudy, Masa, Obby, and Artee are grown teachers in the TV show, but in the preceding shorts they are children like the rest of the cast. Possibly also applies to Bomi, who is a merchant.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Features a rainbow cast which includes foods that are oddly colored, such as a purple hot dog and blue bread.
  • Animesque: The series takes several cues from anime, such as Sweat Drops and Cross-Popping Veins appearing on characters.
  • Anthropomorphic Food: Most of the main cast and some minor characters are Chinese snacks, in addition to other kinds of food.
    • Miko is a shumai.
    • Nao is a baozi.
    • Jubby is a dumpling, the design of his/hernote  head resembling a baby bonnet.
    • Halu is an onigiri.
    • Maru is a peach.
    • Hado is a hotdog.
    • Nida is an egg tart.
    • Happu is a hamburger.
    • Rudy is a youtiao.
    • Artee is a milk tea cup.
    • Masa is a zongzi.
    • Obby is a flatbread.
    • Bomi is a bread.
  • The Baby of the Bunch: Jubby, who is literally a baby, is the youngest of the kids.
  • Badass Adorable: The students, whenever they use their martial arts skills. Special mention goes to Jubby, the infant who stops the tiger in episode one by pulling off its whiskers.
  • Bag of Kidnapping: In episode 3, the leader of the squid thieves uses a sack to kidnap Jubby.
  • Balloon Belly: In episode 12, Miko, Nao and Jubby become bloated from eating a bunch of apples.
  • Beard of Evil: The leader of the squid thieves has a beard resembling a five-o'-clock shadow.
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: The mayor of the town is a fly who is about the size of the other characters.
  • Big Eater:
    • Happu has a hobby of eating.
    • If Bomi's translations of her thoughts are any indication, Jubby is quite the gluttonous one.
  • Blue Is Heroic: Miko, the protagonist, is blue and wishes to become a hero in martial arts.
    Miko: Don't call me "Miko". Call me "hero"!
  • Blush Stickers: A common feature with the characters. The squid thieves don't have them.
  • Breath Weapon: In episode 4, Jubby breathes fire as Nao fights her in her dream.
  • Catapult Nightmare: Nao's episode-beginning dream in episode 4 about Jubby fighting and eating her ends with her jolting upright in bed, relieved that it's just a dream.
  • Character in the Logo: Miko, Nao, and Jubby appear in the logo.
  • Chasing a Butterfly: In episode 3, this is how Jubby finds the barbecue the Mountain Thieves have devised to lure her to them; she chases a butterfly and comes across the smell of the barbecue by accident.
  • Chromatic Arrangement: Miko is blue, Nao is pink, and Jubby is yellow.
  • Cranial Eruption: In the first episode, the tiger develops a bump on his head after colliding with Nao and hitting a tree.
  • Cute, but Cacophonic: Jubby is an adorable little baby, but her crying is so loud that in at least one episode it causes parts of the room to crumble.
  • Delicious Distraction: In episode 3, the Mountain Thieves come up with a barbecue to lure Jubby to them, knowing she likes to eat. It works, distracting her from chasing a butterfly and causing her to follow the scent of the food.
  • Dub Name Change: The Japanese bios for the 2004 shorts rename Miko to Shaomai, the type of food he is.
  • Dream Intro: Episode 4 begins with a dream where a giant Jubby fights Nao with fire breath.
  • Eyeless Face: Obby is a weird variation; while he does have eyes, they're usually not visible, making him look like he has a mouth and eyebrows, but no eyes.
  • Gender Flip: Masa was female in the shorts before being changed to an androgynous-looking male for the show.
  • Fingerless Hands: The various students at the academy have arms that have fingerless stubs at the ends.
  • Follow Your Nose: In episode 3, Jubby floats in the air as she follows the scent of some steaks that the squid thieves have set out as a trap for her.
  • Foreign Exchange Student: Hado and Happu are foreign students in the show. To accentuate this, the former is a hotdog and the latter is a hamburger, both well-known American foods.
  • Four-Fingered Hands: Most of the characters usually have Fingerless Hands, but they will occasionally become four-fingered hands when they are holding something. There is at least one character who has the proper five fingers, however, that being the knight from episode 29.
  • Funny Animal: The Mountain Thieves F4 are all anthropomorphic squids.
  • Human Hummingbird: It's common for running characters to have their legs depicted as a blur of circles.
  • Idea Bulb: In episode 1, an idea bulb appears in a though bubble when Nao gets an idea on how to get Jubby to stop following her.
  • Interclass Friendship: The show's two main protagonists Miko and Nao. Miko comes from a poor family and had been chased by creditors. Nao comes from a rich family with a kung-fu background. The shorts, at least, sometimes have romance between the two.
  • Man on Fire: In episode 2, the leader of the squid thieves is completely enveloped in a flame after one of the other squid thieves gets a Rump Roast from hiding in a fryer that Jubby turned on and the flame gets on him.
  • Non-Mammalian Hair: The leader of the squid thieves somehow has a beard.
  • The Notable Numeral: The squid gang are collectively known as the Mountain Thieves F4, with the "4" referring to how there are four of them.
  • Ocular Gushers: Whenever any character cries, they produce a waterfall of tears.
  • Panthera Awesome: The first episode features a tiger who threatens Miko and Nao. Jubby, despite being a baby, stops it by ripping off the whiskers.
  • Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Miko the blue boy and Nao the pink girl.
  • Quarter Hour Short: All episodes are about 10 to 11 minutes long.
  • Rump Roast: Happens to one of the squid thieves in episode 2 when he hides in a fryer. Jubby turns on the fryer, causing the squid to emerge with a flame on his behind.
  • Second Episode Introduction: The Mountain Thieves F4 are introduced in the second episode, "The Mountain Thieves are Coming".
  • Squashed Flat: In one of the original 2004 shorts, specifically the one spoofing Jurassic Park, the gang and a boar they meet are chased by a bunch of dinosaurs. Another dinosaur that had been chasing the gang is squashed flat by the group of dinosaurs running over it.
  • Stock Sound Effects: Hanna-Barbera sound effects are commonplace in the show.
  • Super-Deformed: The character design.
  • íThree Amigos!: Miko, Nao, and Jubby.
  • Truck Driver's Gear Change: A variant of this trope appears in the theme song, which starts in the key of C, pitch-shifts to a higher F key, shifts back to the C key, and then shifts to the F key again and stays there for the remainder of the song.
  • Two Girls and a Guy: The main trio consists of one boy (Miko) and two girls (Nao and Jubby).
  • Voice for the Voiceless: Bomi serves as a translator for Jubby's non-existent speech, greeting the viewer and telling them what she's saying.
  • Waddling Head: Maru has a blob-shaped body and stubby limbs.
  • Wingding Eyes: In episode 2, as Bomi shows the squid thieves some of the food they make at the restaurant, one of the squids' eyes turn into hearts as he looks at the delicious food.