Zatch Bell! is based on a manga by Makoto Raiku. However, in Japan, Zatch Bell! is known under the title Konjiki no Gash Bell!!
The series starts out with 14-year-old junior high student Kiyo Takamine (Kiyomaro Takamine in the Japanese version) refusing to go to school. He's a bright kid, and feels he is smarter than everyone at school, including the teachers. A strange boy suddenly comes into his room and introduces himself as Zatch Bell. Zatch says he has a note for Kiyo from Kiyo's father, Seitaro Takamine.
From reading the note, Kiyo discovers that his father had found Zatch unconscious while he was in a forest in England. It turns out that Zatch has no memory of where he is from or who he is (except for his name). The only thing on Zatch's person was a red book, which is written in an unknown language. Kiyo's father asks Kiyo to try to figure out what the book says. Kiyo learns pretty quickly that Zatch has the ability to shoot lightning out of his mouth.
It turns out that Zatch Bell is a mamodo (demon in the original Japanese version). Every 1,000 years, 100 mamodo come to Earth to battle in order to become the king of the mamodo world. Each mamodo has a particular element that it controls and attacks with; in Zatch's case, his element is lightning. Each mamodo has various spells he can use, and all of the spells are available through a special spell book, and each spell book is a different color. The red book Zatch has is his spell book. Each mamodo needs a human partner to use their spell book, and Kiyo ends up becoming Zatch's human partner. If a spell book is burned, the mamodo is forced to return to the mamodo world. The last mamodo standing without getting his spell book burned becomes the new mamodo king.
Ultimately, Zatch Bell! is just another variation of battle anime (battle anime include such shows as Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh!, and Bakugan Battle Brawlers). The English dub of Zatch Bell! that was produced would be suitable for anime viewers 10 or 11 years of age and older. While I haven't seen the original Japanese version of the anime, I would assume it would be aimed at a slightly older audience.
|Zatch Bell!||150||2003-2006||Tetsuji Nakamura/Yukio Kaizawa||Toei Animation||Viz Media|
|Konjiki no Gash Bell!! Movie 1: Unlisted Demon 101||N/A||2004||?||Toei Animation||N/A|
|Konjiki no Gash Bell!! Movie 2: Attack of the Mecha-Vulcan||N/A||2004||Takuya Igarashi||Toei Animation||N/A|