Friday, September 22, 2017

THE NOWHERE-NEAR COMPLETE GUIDE TO ADVERTISING MASCOT SUPERHEROES : TURNING JAPANESE

I know I just did it, but I call a moratorium on discussing Japanese anything under the heading of "Turning Japanese." It was already dull and dead in the water when Kirsten Dunst recorded a video for it, for some ungodly reason. Now it's coughing and cold, but it hasn't stopped moving yet. Someone put a shovel through its neck.

ANYWAY. Japan does invest heavily in the mascot game, most notably picking mascots for entire towns and prefectures. I approve of this. I myself will invent some ridiculous blasted hellscape for my old hometown of Tucson. Let me get on drawing a desiccated lizard who is also really alarmingly racist against Mexicans.

Here's my warning, though: I literally don't know who a bunch of these people are, or only vaguely understand them, although they appear straightforward enough. I blame cultural, um ... Marxism? Maybe, I just hear that on Twitter a lot ...

"Jake the dog and Fukuoa-Man the human..."

F(ukuoa)-Man (Fukuoa Now Magazine)
This propellor-headed superhero (he counts, guys, he counts. He's a spaceman/helicoper maybe, but they describe him as a superhero everywhere I could find info about him) is evidently called F-Man to make it easier for English-speaking people to refer to him. Also probably they didn't want his name shoretened to "Fuk-Man," but then they called him "F-Man" so I don't think anyone's a winner.



Rapi:tldier (Rapit Train Line, Osaka)
Rapi:tldier is not only utterly unpronounceable, but he's one of very few superheroes whose design is based on a train. I can think of no others, but I'm sure someone thought he was being clever and created something called "Locomotive Breath," is my guess. I don't know every comic book super-character instinctively, folks, sometimes it's a struggle.

What makes Rapi:tldier fascinating, besides the conscious choice to make his name utterly unpronounceable, is the promotional video which introduces him to a curious public. It is seventeen minutes of low-budget curiosity made flesh. Video. Well, video is the new flesh, I guess.



This person (I don't know.)
This is a superhero whose head is a bowl of noodles. Now you know as much as I do.


7 comments:

Nate Fancher said...

Are we sure "Rapi:tldier" isn't "Rapi-Too-Long-Didn't-Reader"? Because once I had the question, it's all I can see now.

Reno said...

"Rapi:tldier is not only utterly unpronounceable, but he's one of very few superheroes whose design is based on a train."

Actually, there's a train-themed super team...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ressha_Sentai_ToQger

Jonathan Morris said...

I hope I live long enough to see "Actually" used appropriately on the internet, just once.

Jonathan Morris said...

But thank you for the link.

BillyWitchDoctor said...

Okay, I did a little research and read up on Noodlehead there: he's "Tsuyu Yakisoban ("Soup Yakisoba-Man")", mascot of Kuroishi City in Aomori Prefecture--home of Misawa Air Base, my old station! Yay! If you guessed that Kuroishi is known for its noodle dishes, give yourself a gold star.

Rob London said...

"I can think of no others, but I'm sure someone thought he was being clever and created something called "Locomotive Breath," is my guess."

From your lips to Dan Abnett's ears...

http://www.marvunapp.com/Appendix/locobrth.htm

Jonathan Morris said...

Delicious.

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