On Yahoo Shopping, a site famous for its oodles of unique merchandise, an ornamental sword is attracting a lot of attention. It’s called the “Whale Sword” and it’s a model of a style of ornamental sword used in the pre-war days, with a blade close to a meter long. Who wouldn’t want that in their stocking?

The online reviews for this impressive piece are just as entertaining. “A must-have for the final boss!” says one. Another exclaims, “With this sword, you can strike fear into the hearts of your foes and easily defeat them!” The thread is packed with comments that read like something straight out of an RPG.

The blade is being sold by a direct-sales agricultural operation in Kochi. According to the product description, they recommend the sword because “Tosa (modern day Kochi) is famous for whales, so it should have a blade capable of cleaving a whale, and also the truth.” Of course, the sword is for ornamental use, so they recommend it for a high-end restaurant or ryokan, not for actual whale hunting.

However, it isn’t people in those fields who’ve flocked to comment, but sword-loving gamers. What follows are some highlights.

Reviews for the Whale Sword
- “I was able to catch a whale right away! With this sword, you can strike fear into the hearts of your foes and easily defeat them! The fact that it can also be used for fish is a bonus. Definitely give it a try.”
- “Thanks to this sword, I was finally able to defeat that hard-to-beat boss! Everyone should get this for their adventuring.”
- “The day before yesterday, I killed a difficult boss in just a few minutes! It would have been impossible with your average sword, but with the Whale Sword, I sliced and diced that sucker! I highly recommend it.”
- “This product is for skilled swordsmen only. If you are not the chief swordsman in your party or at least in possession of similar skills, you will not be able to use it.”

Words that have no place in a fancy restaurant or ryokan abound, like capture, boss, swordsman, skills and hunting. It’s not clear whether any of the commenters actually purchased a sword, though judging by their comments, they haven’t quite grasped the concept of “ornamental”. If you have a million yen to spare, why not peruse the reviews and consider whether the Whale Sword is right for you or someone on your Christmas list?
[ Read in Japanese ]