Idle Idol: The Japanese Mascot -- a Boing Boing exclusive preview

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25 Responses to “Idle Idol: The Japanese Mascot -- a Boing Boing exclusive preview”

  1. Anonymous says:

    The Todai chain proudly keeps this tradition alive:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/98552525@N00/121954419/

  2. retrojoe says:

    Pokemon 152+ really are lame.

  3. JG says:

    The cover of that book? He looks like a Japanese rip-off of the Big Boy mascot. :-)

  4. Stefan Jones says:

    I found kind of really lame, creepy mascot outside of a ice cream store while visiting NYC last month:

    Creepy Ice Cream Mascot

  5. whatwhatedward1 says:

    I couldn’t find a decent 3d character of Domokun until after the book went to print. Here’s a post up on my site about him though.
    http://idleidol.net/domo-kun/

  6. Nadreck says:

    There’s a similar custom outside of towns out on the Canadian prairies. Most of them have a huge iconic statue on the turn-off road from the main highway. There’s a giant Easter Egg, a big Canadian goose and so on. Flin Flon Manitoba has a statue of the pulp science fiction character that the town is named after.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Can’t believe you didn’t include Domo!

  8. KidDork says:

    Loved this.

    I thought the idol on the cover was either Astro Boy or a very close to trademark infringing knockoff.

  9. Ted8305 says:

    I am Mister Sparkle! I am disrespectful to dirt. Can you see that I am serious? Join me, or die! Can you do any less?

    *gasp* What a brave corporate logo! I accept the challenge of Mister Sparkle.

    ASUMA POWA!!

  10. Anonymous says:

    What, no Donpen?

  11. Anonymous says:

    Just a note on the name “Pipo-kun”: that’s Japanese for how police car sirens sound–”pipo-pipo”.

  12. Anonymous says:

    i’m amazed people don’t know who Astro Boy is. i knew of him when i was a little kid in the midwest in the 80s. he’s well known enough to be mentioned by name in Calvin and Hobbes, which made very few specific cultural references.

  13. a_user says:

    @Chip & JG

    the artist drew in a style he liked which has come full circle with all the anime/manga influences showing up unlikely places

    http://content.treehousetv.com/images/watch/shows/pocoyo/396x212_pocoyo.jpg

    http://www.tvshowsondvd.net/graphics/news3/Boondocks_S2_final.jpg

  14. BastardNamban says:

    The best mascot statue in Japan is hands down, by far,
    Col. Sanders for KFC.

    Every KFC has one- and they are all with the creepiest expression. It’s hilarious, though- much like that Burger King King.

    I wish there was a place I could buy one. I’d put it on my porch for halloween, and hide him behind the door, so people close the door and see him with his arms sticking out and freak out.

    I have thought at length about all the things I could do if I just had one of the Sanders san statues.. ahahaha

    • musicman says:

      I was 16 years old and had been in Japan for about 4 days. My host brother sits down with me to show me some Japanese comedy: Un-chan Nan-chan. Not speaking Japanese made it a little hard to understand, but the skit that had two people dressed in chicken outfits kidnapping a Col. Sanders from outside KFC, taking it to the park, and beating it senseless, remains one of the funniest things I’ve ever seen. And showed to me that comedy can transcend language.

    • whatwhatedward1 says:

      Colonel Sanders in Japan is pretty cool. I’m not sure his expression is that creepy, I just like the fact he’s often dressed up in different costumes.
      Heres my flickr gallery of the Colonel showing off his wardrobe
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/whatwhat/galleries/72157623484696154/

  15. gnosis says:

    Doesn’t Tsukishima have it’s own 3D mascot(s)? I always wondered about the ones I saw there. Thanks.
    PS- fantastic book and post.

  16. dmoisan says:

    I wonder if Mappy, a lesser-known but still famous Namco game character, is Pipo-kun’s cousin? Mappy features a white police mouse that recovers stolen goods while evading kitty criminals, a few years after Pac-Man.

  17. Cookiepants says:

    In 1985, Baseball Fans in Osaka celebrating the Hanshin Tigers win threw a Colonel Sanders mascot into the Dontonbori river. (Some say this was from anti-American feeling against one of the players on the opposing team). In 2009, the statue was found, and this is how it looked:

    http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nn20090311a3.html

    Of course, people in L.A. were kidnapping Bob’s Big Boy mascots and leaving them gagged and blindfolded in the desert long before this. Mascots rule!

  18. Anonymous says:

    When visiting Japan, I found the most hilarious mascot. As it was at Narita airport, it ended up being the first picture I took in Japan. It was a giant hot dog, wearing an American flag as a cape, with legs and feet that had on Nikes, and it was squirting ketchup on its head.

    When going through my pictures, everyone, matter what their country of origin goes “What the heck is that?”

  19. whatwhatedward1 says:

    The link for Sento-kun seems to be missing
    here it is http://idleidol.net/sento-kun/

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