Anpanman Character Reviews:
The Other Baikinfolks
Beyond Baikinman and Dokinchan, the number of mold-people shown in the series have been very few and far between, but the next most important is the enigmatic Baikinsennin, an old man who just sort of floats down out of the sky one day and offers Baikinman his guidance, eventually taking up permanent residence on Earth as an advisor to invading germs.
Baikinsennin throws a bit of a wrench into anything we might have gleaned from Baikinman and Dokinchan's designs; he has the black and purple coloration as well as the round, pink eyes of Baikinman, but we've never seen if he has wings, and he has only a single antenna like Dokinchan, which I guess means that these features are pretty mutable from one individual to the next regardless of their gender.
I think it's also pretty safe to assume that his green-tinged beard and eyebrows are 100% mildew.
Baikinsennin doesn't appear all that often, but generally contributes either advice or one-off magical spells to Baikinman. The rest of the time, he seems to spend most of his time worthlessly lounging around, or sometimes having little outings with Dokinchan, who just seems to enjoy using him for his hot tub and his flying sports car. We've gotten some hints that he has his own fantasies of taking over, but if he's so smart, I don't know why he doesn't just murder Anpanman himself, or even let Baikinman use any of his stuff more than once.
Maybe there's just more to it than him "helping" Baikinman? Maybe he has a greater mission we just don't know about, and its success hinges specifically on making Baikinman succeed.
Perhaps Baikinsennin was also responsible for calling upon Aokinman and Akakinman, basically just Blue-kinman and Red-kinman. These are the only other Baikins we ever see that actually resemble Baikinman, besides their weird colors, and they give up and go back home when they're defeated at the end of a single movie special. So, we know Baikinman isn't totally unique among his kind, at least, but apparently it's only under pretty dire circumstances that any more of them come by to help each other out.
One of the last remaining Baikin-people ever introduced in the series is Kokinchan, a young child of her species who came to Earth of her own accord out of sheer boredom. Her power is that anyone physically touched by her tears will be overwhelmed with sadness and cry like a baby, as will anybody touched by their tears, so I guess we're at least back to the theme of contagion.
In her earliest appearances, Kokinchan was much more of a rotten little bastard and would simply make herself cry on command to spread her infection around, but as the series aimed itself towards an even younger audience in more recent years, her character has kind of been softened up into an actual sensitive baby beloved by everyone other than Baikinman.
There are, fortunately, at least a couple more Baikin-beings in the show, but this wraps up the ones who seem most directly related to Baikinman and actually come straight from the Baikin Planet.
Tomorrow, we finally look at one of the single best characters in the series.