Can you guess what character Hello Kitty has teamed up with this time? Hint: it involves a famous character sporting very distinct eyebrows!
We all probably know Hello Kitty is one busy and successful cat — in fact, we even like to call her “Kitty-san (Ms. Kitty)” when she’s in her relentless business mode. Well, once again, the talented Ms. Kitty has managed to make business look darn cute!
This time, the feline star mascot has collaborated with the popular manga Kochira Katsushika-ku Kameari Kōen Mae Hashutsujo (literally, “This is the police station in front of Kameari Park in Katsushika Ward”), or Kochikame for short. Kochikame has been serialized in Weekly Shonen Jump magazine since 1976 and has the distinction of being the manga with the most number of volumes published so far (199 volumes as of June 2016) in Japan, as well as the longest continued series in a boys’ comic magazine, so the manga and its main characters are certainly something the Japanese public is familiar with.
Ms. Kitty’s collaboration with the long-standing manga series apparently involves the character getting the distinct eyebrows of Kochikame’s protagonist, Kankichi Ryotsu, or Ryo-san, as he’s known to manga readers. And Japanese internet users seem to be quite impressed with the striking visual results of the mash-up.
▼ In case you’re not familiar with Ryo-san’s impressive eyebrows
両津勘吉 (@kamekatu1192) August 21, 2016
Yup, the bushy eyebrows are definitely all Ryo-san! And since Ryo-san is a cop, Hello Kitty is also dressed in a police uniform, along with Ryo-san’s trademark sandals.
Well, it looks like the creative team certainly did an awesome job with the character design. And we think it’s great that they took on the challenge of fusing Hello Kitty with the male lead instead of one of the female characters! And once again, we’re reminded that Ms. Kitty really isn’t picky about her jobs at all.
There will be 10 Ryo-san & Kitty items made available as part of the collaboration. Here’s a look at some of them:
▼ Here’s a small doll priced at 1,400 yen (US$13.50). The details look great!
▼ There will also be an acrylic key ring (750 yen).
▼ This adorable mini-towel featuring “Ryo-san Kitty” with different expressions will be priced at 600 yen.
▼ There is also a T-shirt (3,000 yen) with a relatively simple design.
▼ They even have Strawberry candy (600 yen) that comes in a cute pink can!
The collaborative items will initially be available at the Kochikame Exhibit commemorating the manga’s 40th anniversary, to be held at the Nihonbashi Takashimaya Department Store from September 14 to 26. The goods are also scheduled to become available later at Jump Shop outlets across Japan and online from publisher Shueisha’s Jump Character Store website.
What’s really impressive is that Kochikame has appeared in every single issue of Weekly Shone Jump without fail for 40 years since its beginning. Now, we think that’s quite an accomplishment! Of course, the exhibit will feature not only the collaborative goods but displays including original artwork by series creator Osamu Akimoto and also photos capturing the changing scenes of Tokyo that have appeared in the manga over the years as well.
It sounds like the exhibit should be a treat for Kochikame and Hello Kitty fans in Tokyo later this month, and also a chance to get your hands on some cool original Hello Kitty items. Here’s to the merging of two great characters!
Reference and images: Kochikame Exhibit at Nihonbashi Takashimaya official website
Original article by: Meg Sawai
Images © Osamu Akimoto/Shueisha ©‘76,‘16 SANRIO (G)
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