Turning Japanese is the first episode of Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time and takes place in a village in feudal Japan, 1603 AD. The main antagonist of the episode is El Jefe.



The gang time travels to feudal Japan to locate Sly's ancestor, Rioichi Cooper, a master ninja thief and sushi chef. They discover that Rioichi has been captured and locked in a maximum security prison full of guards and deadly traps after having supposedly served bad sushi to the era's Shogun.

Rioichi has been captured by a villainous dictator known as El Jefe, who has taken over feudal Japan. El Jefe is constructing a massive shrine with a one-thousand foot tall statue of himself at the center. Sly and the gang must set Rioichi free and then stop El Jefe.


Job name Completed by
Photo Op Sly
Sly needs to recon photos around the area for Bentley.
Breakout! Sly
Sly must find a way to free Rioichi.
Sushi House Startup Sly, Rioichi
Time for Rioichi to reclaim his sushi house.
Something's Fishy Bentley, Murray
Murray and Bentley must catch some fish for Rioichi.
Pretty in Pinker Rioichi, Bentley, Murray
Murray must obtain a Geisha outfit.
Tiger Tail Bentley
Use the RC car to tail El Jefe.
Spiked Sushi Rioichi
Gather some poisonous plant seeds.
Altitude Sickness Sly, Murray, Rioichi
It's time! Raid El Jefe's fortress and take him down!


Sly manages to defeat El Jefe, who is then taken back to the present to get arrested by INTERPOL. It was a hollow victory though as Sly failed to get Rioichi's cane back as mice guards swooped down from a gigantic blimp and stole it. They also still had no idea who was behind all of this. However, during the theft, one of the mice goons dropped what looked like an old sheriff's badge. The gang put it inside the time machine to decipher it, and it turns out that "Tennessee Kid" Cooper needed their help next. Therefore, they have to travel back to the 1880s.



  1. Meditation Turtle
  2. Gyro Slicer 2000
  3. Jade Samurai Helmet
  4. Golden Lion Statue
  5. The Ninja Cookbook
  6. Lucky Neko
  7. Raccoon Daruma
  8. Dragon Claw Statue
  9. Golden Teapot
  10. Jade Peach
  11. Samurai Warrior
  12. Tales of a Samurai Hippo Comic


After collecting all 30 clue bottles throughout the village and cracking the hidden safe, you will receive Coopergiwa's Gold Magnet.


  • The title of this episode is a reference to the 1980 song by The Vapors of the same name.
  • The year that this episode takes place, 1603, is likely a reference to the film, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III, in which the Turtles travel to feudal Japan, 1603, to save April O'Neil.
  • This episode, along with 40 Thieves, does not have the final job labeled as "Operation: (Job Title)"
  • This is the only episode in Thieves in Time to not feature Carmelita, though she is mentioned by Sly twice.

Start a Discussion Discussions about Turning Japanese

  • Turning Japanese (Sly 4/Episode 1)

    5 messages
    • Speaking of the Geisha House, did ankyone else notice the massive sign outside with Camelita in a kimono on it? I can't see why no one e...
    • To awnser myself, an obscure 50's giant monster movie I recently saw called the Giant Claw.
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