We all know Japan likes to have a character for just about everything, and we also know the country has a long history of sexualizing things that really don’t need to be. So KFC Japan’s new mascot character of a sexy anthropomorphized chicken with huge boobs should surprise no one. And yet, I confess myself surprised. Or maybe creeped out is a better way of putting it.
Kentucky Fried Chicken – American fast food chain and purveyor of greasy, finger-lickin’ goodness – has firmly established itself in the Japanese landscape ever since the first store opened in the 1970s, and has been a Christmas-dinner staple in Japanese homes since. At pretty much any location you stop by, Colonel Sanders will be there to greet you in his signature white suit, his plastic-y smile welcoming you inside.
In the past few days, however, Colonels across the nation have been spotted in full samurai garb. What is the meaning of all this? Is KFC about ready to wage a Last Samurai-esque battle of the fast foodies? Unfortunately the truth is not that epic, but all these Samurai Sanders still look pretty cool as they get ready to celebrate the upcoming Japanese holiday Boys’ Day.
Last year, something beautiful came to Japan. It was only here for a short while, but in that time, it left a deep impression on many people, including us here at RocketNews24. And while we were sad to see it go, it’s time to dry our tears, because this spring, it’s coming back again!
So, all excited for cherry blossom season? That’s great, but what we’re actually talking about right here are Kentucky Fried Chicken-flavor potato chips.
KFC launched its Double Down menu item in 2010, and after it sunk in that the fast food chain was serious about making a bacon and cheese sandwich with two pieces of fried chicken substituting for the bread, reactions were split between horrified and hungry. All agreed though that the decadent offering was in no way to be mistaken for a healthy dining option, and many commentators declared it the sort of thing that could only have been birthed in response to the extra-gluttonous fast food culture of the U.S.
Except it turns out that Americans aren’t the only ones who occasionally like to go crazy and stuff themselves with as much KFC-cooked meat as their mouths and stomachs can hold. The Double Down was also a sales success in Korea, and this week, KFC launched an evolved version in the Philippines called the Double Down Dog.
KFC Malaysia has launched an investigation after a fist-fight broke out between employees in a branch of the restaurant in Kuala Lumpur. The fight, which happened directly in front of customers, was captured on camera and uploaded Facebook, where it has been shared and viewed thousands of times.
A video of the punch-up, which appears to show one member of staff verbally abusing another before a third employee dives in with a flying kick, was uploaded on January 17. KFC Malaysia was surprisingly quick to respond.
Although I never met the man, Colonel Sanders doesn’t strike me as a hurried individual. Anybody who’s willing to add 11 different seasonings to his fried chicken can see the value in taking the time to appreciate the finer things in life. I like to imagine that rather than rush through his meals, the KFC founder would linger at the table, at least for a few minutes, and when his schedule allowed, for periods extending to “a spell.”
That’s why I think he’d approve of KFC opening its first full-fledged café this month in Japan.
Recently, Japanese branches of McDonald’s and Burger King have been getting into the Halloween spirit with spooky black burgers infused with squid ink and bamboo charcoal. This is a problem for KFC, though, since both of those ingredients are a little too exotic to mix with the Colonel’s traditional set of 11 herbs and spices.
Since KFC can’t celebrate Halloween by embracing its dark side, the most popular fried chicken outlet in Japan is instead turning to the holiday’s other icon by offering pumpkin biscuits.
Previously, we wrote about KFC Japan’s deep-fried celebration of “Colonel Day,” involving a variety of absurd, yet incredible, chicken-shaped computer accessories, like a drumstick mouse, a keyboard with chicken keys, and a chicken USB memory stick. The company even trotted out a pair of stylish fried chicken earrings.
They’ve unveiled a couple more items since then, including this oversized fried chickendrumstick iPhone 5s case (even the Colonel is laughing, asking, “Why is it so big?”).
I don’t know about you guys, but whenever I think of Kentucky Fried Chicken, or “KFC” as it doggedly insists on being called, I immediately think of computer peripherals. What’s that, you say? You’re a normal human being and so you’d never make such a peculiar connection? Oh. Well, perhaps you think of earrings instead?
People in Japan love fried chicken. It’s so popular it’s become one of the staple ingredients in Japanese bento lunches, where it’s served in small, boneless pieces known as kara-age, and it’s in such high demand that you’ll find queues outside specialist kara-age joints around the country.
World-famous fast-food chain Kentucky Fried Chicken has finally picked up on the popularity of the chicken piece with a new line-up of Japanese-style hole-in-the-wall outlets dedicated to serving up kara-age in a variety of KFC flavours. And that’s not all. They’ll even serve it up in a bento lunchbox too.
Man, doesn’t that pile of Kentucky Fried Chicken look enticing? Sure, it may not be the most sophisticated meal, and there’s really no way you can twist the nutritional facts to call it particularly healthy, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a purer, simpler gastronomic joy than a bucket of fried chicken.
But you know what makes the above image all the more beautiful? The large-font Japanese text smack dab in the middle of it, the part that says tabehodai, or, in English, “all you can eat.”
It’s amazing how much Japan loves KFC. I pass by more locations of the world’s most popular fried chicken chain on an average day in Tokyo than I ever did in Los Angeles, and it’s even the meal of choice for most Japanese diners on Christmas Eve.
Now, just as Japan has embraced KFC, KFC is embracing Japan by expanding the number of locations where you can get your hands on one of the restaurant’s rare Kentucky Fried Chicken rice bowls.
KFC Japan has announced it is getting in on the fast food giant’s tie up with international soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo starting April 28 by offering new menu items at all Japanese stores. Ronaldo’s face may be all over this stuff, but something tells me this kind of fully fried meal doesn’t actually go in his face very often…
While 3D printing techniques have been around for 30 years, it’s only recently that technology has advanced to the point where the process is economically feasible. The ability to quickly and accurately duplicate three dimensional objects is set to revolutionize the engineering and medical fields, leading to easier creation of both prototypes and production versions of precision components and prosthetics.
But in mankind’s heady rush into this exciting new field, many have overlooked a potentially life-altering application of 3D printing: reproducing Kentucky Fried Chicken.
Last autumn Japan was treated to a new way to enjoy KFC: Kentucky Fried Fish. At that time our reporter Kuzo was lucky enough to sample a few sticks before the entire nation converged on the fast food chain and devoured the crispy battered fish sticks faster than KFC could supply them.
As a result the KFF campaign came to an abrupt halt in under two weeks time due to lack of ingredients. However, from 6 February, KFC Japan says they have reworked their logistics and are reviving Kentucky Fried Fish! This time we sent in Megu to check it out.
Recent relaxations of regulations by the government of Myanmar have gone a long way in opening up the country to foreign tourism and investment. While we’re sure this is big news in the worlds of finance and manufacturing, we couldn’t help but wonder what this would mean for RocketNews24’s journalistic foundation: fast food. We’d heard that Japanese/Korean hamburger/craziness emporium Lotteria had entered the market, but where do the people of Myanmar get their fried poultry fix? Do they have KFC?
We suppose we could have used Google to see if the chain operates in the country (turns out it does), but we saw no reason to do so when we could get paid to take an overseas business trip instead. And so we travelled to Myanmar’s metropolis of Yangon in search of KFC.
We found two thirds of what we were looking for.
For all of the attention Japan gets for its culinary contributions such as sushi and tempura, precious little credit is given to the way the country is always willing to push the envelope of salty snacks. Walk into any convenience store in the country, and you’ll find shelf after shelf stuffed with rice crackers, assorted nuts, and most of all, potato chips.
Recently, snack maker Calbee unleashed its newest flavor: KFC Colonel’s Crispy Potato Chips, and despite having never been to Kentucky, I knew it was my solemn duty to eat them.