Rogue Morimoto Black Obi Soba Ale

"Zoku Konton" is the 16th single released by Nakagawa Shoko.

Too much ribbon!

Looks a bit like the chick elf in that Jim Henson movie from the ’80s!

It’s not surprising that in Japan, the land of cute and cuddly, pretty much everything has a fuzzy mascot. Even prefectural and city governments are getting in on the merchandising mania with adorable (or terrifying, depending on your point of view) characters called yuru-kyara meant to promote tourism and local products.

[…]This week, 141 yuru-kyara from 25 prefectures across the country gathered in Sasebo, Nagasaki Prefecture, to make their mark on history by becoming the largest group of mascots ever to do the same dance together.[…]

HTB, the event organizers, set the goal of gathering characters from all over the country to perform a synchronized dance number to a song called The Beard Dance by The Drifters (a Japanese comedy rock band with no relation to the American R&B group). If, during the 5-minute song, less that 5% of the characters were out of sync or made mistakes, they would get a listing in the Guinness Book of World Records.

Although the yuru-kyara earnestly and enthusiastically shook their tiny arms and bulbous bodies to the music, they twice failed meet the requirements. However, 134 mascots put in a flawless performance on the third try and succeeded in setting the record! Congratulatory music played and the characters jumped around hugging each other, completely lost in the moment.[…]

No Tabo-kun (T.M.R’s mascot to promote the Shiga prefecture).

It feels like it has pretty much become Kumamon all the time now. Not that I mind, though. [wsj blog] [official blog] [dancing to “chocolate disco”]
(It is also doing some PR with Scott Murphy and Rivers Cuomo for their Japanese album…)

L’Arc’s Ken also has his own mascot character named C.H.Lion Rag baby (“C.H.” for “curly hair”). It’s not a local tourism character, but it still attends some of the big yuru-chara gatherings.

Can’t get much cuter than an indie jpop idol group with a modest, devoted fanbase. Have fun gettin’ this song outta yer ‘ead fer the rest o’ th’ day.