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Mascot Overload – John Oliver Explores a Distinctly Japanese Trend


Welcome to Japan!

As fellow fans of anime, manga and all things Japanese pop culture, it can be rather easy to forget one simple fact; not everyone shares the same passion. As such, it can be a moment of crisp realisation when one not versed in the labyrinthian world of Japanese marketing decides to peer in.

Such a moment occurred recently on Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, via a segment that focused on the cultural powerhouse that is Japanese mascots. These myriad creatures born of dream and nightmare are a mainstay in the companies and prefectures of Japan, lending faces to less-than-personable concepts; such as a railway. Whilst the norm in the wonderfully weird country of Japan, the majority of the globe shares a noticeably different view, one far from presenting a cute visage for a prison.

But let’s not get too serious here people, this is a comedic look at a harmless and cute practice…unless you count Melon Kuma. So sit back, relax and laugh a little as you question how so many mascots can possibly exist within the confines of one country.


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