Japanese City Blatantly Rips Off Pikachu For Mascot

NeoAC

Zombie Nation #LetsRise
Jun 9, 2008
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Ube City used Mimic! It's super effective!

Seriously, they are really lucky Nintendo doesn't just go right after them. They're usually pretty quick on the defense when it comes to ripping off their character.s
 

cystemic

New member
Jan 14, 2009
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give em a break, there are a lot of weirder things about Japan that are more worthy of note than a pichu rip-off. pokemon are japanese anyway, big whoop. remember when pedobear became a mascot for the winter olympics? now that was funny
 

Susurrus

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Nov 7, 2008
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Is it actually that similar? Really? It's a fluffy character with a slightly oversized and round head, and pointy ears. I could point out a whole load more that are similar. It's just fairly generic, really,
 

Stalydan

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Mar 18, 2011
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werewolfsfury said:
TeeBs said:
In all fairness Pokemon is really underground in Japan.
I... I'm pretty sure that that is a completely incorrect statement.
I was just trying to find a picture of the Pokemon Centres they have in Tokyo because I was like "I'm pretty sure that Pokemon is massively popular over there". So yeah... incorrect statement is VERY incorrect.
 

Evilsanta

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Apr 12, 2010
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Well...Yeah, How could the official not see that one coming?

Either they had to live under a rock for 2 decades or they are just stupid.
 

Scarim Coral

Jumped the ship
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Oct 29, 2010
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To be honest it's the face that resemble Pikachu (the cartoon body is still different enough) and they really should of kept the body structure the same for the costume (big wide head). Well I guess those copies Pokemon game had found the real mascot since they are scrapping that one.
 

torzath

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Jun 29, 2010
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werewolfsfury said:
TeeBs said:
In all fairness Pokemon is really underground in Japan.
I... I'm pretty sure that that is a completely incorrect statement.
The newest games sold 2.6 million copies in Japan during the first two days.

I just don't know how they think they could get away with this. This is like some town in America recoloring mickey mouse green and sticking some leaves on for ears.
 

Toriver

Lvl 20 Hedgehog Wizard
Jan 25, 2010
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1000 yen says that whoever the designer was knew exactly what they were doing. They were probably bored or hit writer's block, threw a dart at a dartboard of popular children's characters, changed it up just a little bit, and hoped nobody would notice. Well, they noticed. Personally, what with the prevalence of cute mascots attached to all sorts of PSA campaigns here, and with the sheer abundance of pokemon available to use, Nintendo could actually score some pretty good PR if they licensed out pokemon to use as those mascots to promote public awareness for stuff such as recycling.

"Hey kids! Pikachu can't stand there and generate power all day for you! It wants to play, too! Give it a break and save some power!"

"Remember to keep Sudowoodo's home clean! Throw away your trash, and recycle!"

"Don't waste water or else Gyarados will F***ING DEVOUR YOU!"

Yeah, great PR...
 

Doom972

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Dec 25, 2008
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Well, the drawing doesn't resemble Pikachu that much (though it still looks like a pokemon) but the costume just looks like a repurposed pikachu costume.
If they made it more like the drawing - wider head, point for a nose, and a different smile shape it wouldn't be such a blatant rip-off.

Note that this is a certain drawing style widely used in Japan. There are many anime characters who look very much alike.
 

ShadowsofHope

Outsider
Nov 1, 2009
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Someone finally gave Pikachu the option of using elemental stone for evolving into.. new Pikachu's.

Dear god. Also.. no f'ing way they didn't honestly think it'd escape anyone's notice..
 

SemiHumanTarget

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Apr 4, 2011
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What balanced journalism! Hey, Escapist! If you have no one on staff that can speak Japanese, I'd be glad to work freelance for you.

The video included goes into more detail about the situation. Here it is: The city is saying that the design artwork of the character was intended to represent a thing of nature, hence the leaves for ears. They then contracted out the work to create a costume from the character design on paper, and the contracted designer came up with what you are seeing.

Considering the design drawing looks a lot less like Pikachu than the costume does, and that the city contracted out the costume design, it actually is really plausible that it was an honest mistake.

That said, as Doom972 noted, it's not like this is a fluke. Characters with gigantic eyes, animal features such as tails and big ears, and bubbly body types are pretty much par for the course in Japan. It's a style that combines the characteristics of early anime and manga (itself inspired by American comic books) and traditional Japanese mythology which heavily features mystical animals, especially foxes, tanuki, cats, and other furry creatures.
 

llafnwod

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Nov 9, 2007
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Toriver said:
"Hey kids! Pikachu can't stand there and generate power all day for you! It wants to play, too! Give it a break and save some power!"

"Remember to keep Sudowoodo's home clean! Throw away your trash, and recycle!"

"Don't waste water or else Gyarados will F***ING DEVOUR YOU!"

Yeah, great PR...
Are you being sarcastic? Because I'm not even a kid and that last one is making me reconsider ever using a toilet again.