Shinnosuke Nohara (野原しんのすけ), also known as Shin chan, Shinchan and Shin-chan, is the main character of Crayon Shin-chan. He is 5 years old and yet acts overtly mature. In general, he is brutally honest, highly curious, and has no shame whatsoever. Ironically, there have been several instances in which Shinnosuke's own crazy antics actually solved the problems of those around him. Whether this is the result of his own or purely accidental is debatable. Adding to that, he also displays a surprising amount of talent and ability in various activities (running, surfing, kendo, fishing, skiing, swimming and others). On rare occasions, he displays bouts of selfless kindness. For example, in one anime episode he saved a frog from a truck on a rainy day, getting all wet and dirty in the process and risking Misae's anger since it was his last set of clean clothes. In another episode, he gives Masao the change he has even though he knows that his mother will scold him later. However, these are often immediately followed by antics that negate the goodwill others feel. There are also times when Shin-chan displays a level of maturity beyond his usual self in his concern for others, and in a few rare instances he shows that deep down he really does care for his family, although he usually behaves badly with them.
He loves chocolate biscuits, especially "Chocobi" and is a fan of tokusatsu show "Action Mask", but he absolutely hates green peppers. Besides Action Kamen, he also likes to watch Kantam Robo, Enpitsu Shin-chan and Misterious Magical Girl Mari-chan. He shows deep a affection for his sister Himawari. He is attracted to older girls and women, despite his young age, is brazenly attracted to older girls and women even to a point of flirting with them (possibly an inherited trait with his father and paternal grandfather, much to his mum's dismay). The only girl he seems to really like is a college student named Nanako, around whom he becomes shy. However he also often exhibits deep affection for his friend Kazama. He also enjoys looking at girls' bikini albums (Fumie Nakajima, Mariya Yamada, Takako Matsu etc.). Some of his strange activities include dressing up (often as an animal), mooning plus pretending to be an elephant using his er... manhood as the appropriately named "Mr. Elephant". He also makes trouble for others and then criticizes their efforts in covering for him.
There are also times when Shin-chan displays a level of maturity beyond his usual self in his concern for others, and in a few rare instances he shows that deep down he really does care for his family, despite his constant disrespect towards them. This shows is up more often than not in the feature length movies as compared to the regular series episodes. Such as one time he truly trusted his family in the movie The Storm Called: The Adult Empire Strikes Back as they climbed up a construction building to stop the emperor from sending the world back to the twentieth century. This shows up more often than not in the feature length movies as compared to the regular series episodes.
In the manga, Shinnosuke is way more expressive than he is in the anime, being able to cry, feel empathy, feel annoyed and even smile while looking at the viewer (although this still happens very rarely).
Shinnosuke is based on the character Shinnosuke Nikaido of another series by Yoshito Usui, Darakuya Store Monogatari. He is a naughty child around which the series is made. He balks at washing dishes and taking out the dog. What is most interesting, though not as far-out as the other differences, is that he rarely screams, rarely cries or throws tantrums, and is often punished. His works are always done by his puppy dog eyes. He generally pulls his pants down when happy and dances while singing "Buri! Buri!" (ケツだけ星人, "Ass Dance! Ass Dance!" in the English Funimation dub and "Hula Hula" in the Vitello and Phuuz dubs). He also likes to do the elephant dance (ゾーさん zō-san) which consists of that an elephant is drawn around the penis, which acts like a trumpet. He always runs to the nearest TV at 5 PM to see Action Mask and, when he can't go inside his house he will go at Masao's house. He is a member of the Kasukabe Defence Force. He has his own imaginary character called Buriburizaemon.
He is a very good singer and a pretty good baseball and football player. He learned photography from his aunt Musae. Sometimes he changes the actual words, making it very funny. For example, promise becomes promotion etc. He tends to not act like a child when he sighs "Gokuraku, gokuraku" ('Paradise, Paradise'-- a stereotypical utterance while in a hot bath or spring) at a hot spring or complains about "kids these days" as though he weren't a kid himself. His friends often have to remind him of that.
His misuse of language is also typical. Shin-chan calls out "Itte rasshai!" ('See you soon!'--said to those leaving.) when he comes home from school and uses mixed-up greetings like okonban gozaimasu ("okonban gozaimasu", "A combo of 'good morning' and 'good night'.). His written language is full of misspellings and strangely-written characters, and when he overhears someone older saying something that sounds pretty sophisticated, he'll try to repeat it, but fails miserably, switching around syllables and words to no end. He also uses ora (nonstandard even for adults) ("ora", "A corruption of the tough-guy first person pronoun 'ore') to refer to himself when most five-year-old boys use boku, and prefers hoi ("hoi", "Another corruption, this time of 'hai', or 'yes') to hai.
Shin-Chan is attracted to older girls and women, despite his young age and flirts with them with adult dialogue such as "Hei, oneisan, tamanegi tabereru~?" (Hey, baby, you like onions?). He brazenly pursues any girl who catches his eye. As he flirts, a smiling mouth, red cheeks, and flirting eyes can be seen. He shares this trait with his father and paternal grandfather, but this often results in mom's cruel punishment. However, he seems to has at least some standard in his pursues, as he never tried to flirted with any of his female teachers (Ume Matsuzaka, Midori Ishizaka, and Masumi Ageo), even though people (including himself) have considered them to be rather attractive. The only girl he seems to really like is a college student named Nanako Oohara. He always tries to pretend to be a brilliant boy in front of her in order to impress her. He has absolutely no interest in kindergarten girls; in fact, upon receiving a love letter from a fellow student, he whines, "But I'm not attracted to kids!"
He is very close with his mom, as seen when his mom goes to the hospital when she is pregnant and he becomes sad for her believing she will die in one month. Despite this, he still copies his father's behavior and will refer to her as Misae at times while mocking her flat chest.
He's always on his dad's side because he is just like him. And when he takes his side, he saves him from Misae. Normally Shin-chan will tell things about Hiroshi to Mitsy, making Mitsy fight with him.
Toru Kazama/Georgie/Cosmo (friend)
Being the closest friend with Shin-Chan in the Shin-Chan series, he is intelligent and always imagines he is the leader of the Kasukabe Defense Organization. He acts like he is grown up but shows his childish actions in the movie My Moving Story! Cactus Large Attack!. He looks like he doesn't like Shin-Chan but he cares about him, by chasing the train Shin-Chan is taking to the airport, being the perfect pair in the movie.
Shiro is his pet dog. Shinnosuke balks at taking out the dog.
He always make jokes at Masao making him to cry. But Masao seemed doesn't care much about it. After Bo, Masao is the closest friend of Shin-Chan. He is weak and always cries whenever he gets in danger. He is really good at voice acting and drawing mangas and plans to become an artist in the future but failed at last. Although he looks weak but when he is fired up, he will become unstoppable, reckless which might change the ending. He is in love with Ai-Chan but she is not interested in Masao.
Nene Sakurada/Nene/Neni/Nini (friend)
She is only girl in the troop. She likes to play real-house with the other members in the Kasukabe Defense Organization, because of this, Shin-Chan and his friends always want to escape from her. She loves rabbits so much that even in the movie, Roar! Kasukabe Animal Kingdom, after she drank the Animal Potion, she turned into a rabbit. However, when she is angry, like her Mom, she grabs her rabbit plush and punches it. Nene is impatient with Shin's odd behaviour but does enjoy his company, as she usually invites him (if he hasn't already invited himself) to join her and her Mother if they're out for a meal (much to her Mother's dismay). In the movie, My Moving Story! Cactus Large Attack! Nene was upset when she hears Shin-Chan is going to move to Mexico, proving that she does care about him. Although she has a habit of losing her temper, she still makes a good team with Shin-chan.
Bo Suzuki/Bo-chan (friend)
They normally meet when the whole troop is together. Bo always keep a snivel.His interest is to collect strange rocks. After Kazama, he is the closest friend of Shin-Chan. In the movie The Storm Called: The Kasukabe Boys of the Evening Sun Bo is the only friend that still remembers Shin-Chan and being passive to him.He is also one of the most important character in the Shin-Chan series although he is quiet.
Ai Suotome/Sally (friend/classmate)
She is a rich girl and likes to play with Shin-chan. She moved to Kasukabe because she wanted to feel how a normal kindergarten student is. Ai-chan loved Shin-chan and always called him "Sama" in almost every episodes that Ai-chan appeared, but Shin-chan rejects her because he doesn't like girls that are smaller and the same age as him. If Shin-chan wants anything she does the work with the help of her bodyguard, she blackmails him all the time. She fights with Nene a lot. Ai-chan first joined the Kasukabe Defense Organization but leaves it later because she thinks she is not "close" enough with Shin-chan.
- Shin-chan ranked the 1st in the official vote "My Favorite Character" from Japan.
- Shin-chan's representative animal is a elephant (zou in Japanese) as he shows his penis and draw it like an elephant.
- Shin-chan studied at the same primary school as Bo, Masao and Nene Sakurada but different from Toru Kazama.
- "Hoho~i!" is a nonsense word Shin-chan uses loosely as a greeting.
- He often does the "Ketsu-dake Seijin" (Butt-Only Alien) and "Zô-san" (Mr. Elephant).
- He sometimes says Ja ('Well, then', or, colloquially, 'See ya.') at the end of episodes.
- On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the designation of Kasukabe as a city, the real life city council decided to award the residence certificate to Shinnosuke Nohara.
Main article: Costumes of Shinnosuke Nohara