Grandpa, or Ji-chan (じっちゃん), is a character from the Hamtaro franchise. He first appeared in Hamuchanzu de Gozaimachu! Vol.1 as the grandfather of Atsu-kun and owner of the Ham-Hams. He returned in the anime series as Mindy O'Hara's grandfather. Originally running a pet shop, he is very good with animals. He found Lapis and Lazuli in a desert and gave them to Mindy as pets.
Ji-chan is one of few human characters who is aware of the Ham-Hams' adventures. The Ham-Hams are initially very frightened when Ji-chan catches them in the forest (in I Want to See You, Wan!) - but he is friendly towards them, and thanks them for befriending Lapis and Lazuli. According to Lapis, Ji-chan cannot directly understand what hamsters are saying, but he "understands their feelings".
While Ji-chan most prominently appeared in the Paradaichu! era of episodes, he actually debuted in the anime as early as episode 24 (Hamtaro, Please Come Home!). He picks up Hamtaro when he is lost in the cold, nursing and warming him up before releasing him back into the wild.
Ji-chan is possibly the most inconsistent of Hamtaro characters in terms of his roles; especially with his family greatly differing across media. However, in every case, he retains his grandfatherly personality, and has a very strong bond with every animal he meets.
- While his name literally just translates to "Grandpa", it is written in a way that would only be stated by a child, and not a grown adult.