Rilakkuma appointed Saitama Police Road Safety Public Relations Ambassador
Japan has a bit of a reputation for accepting things that on the outside may seem a little strange. But what’s odd elsewhere may be the full standard here, and that’s why no one even flinched when the adorable fictional San-X character Rilakkuma was cast as the PR ambassador of Saitama Prefecture Police Road Safety.
Rilakkuma’s commissioning in this role is part of the “Reiwa 3 Fall National Road Safety Campaign”, which was implemented from September 21.
In this role, we can expect to see Rilakkuma promoting road safety through posters, videos and media posts on popular social networks such as Twitter and instagram.
It wouldn’t be the first time that a mascot or kawaii character has been placed in a position of importance, as Pokemon’s Slowpoke has already been appointed official prefectural governor of Kagawa Prefecture on April Fool’s Day 2018 – albeit more recently. , the Pokémon character has to assume roles more closely related to its origins. Another great example is Pokemon’s Lapras, which has been appointed as the official tourism ambassador of Miyagi Prefecture.
Although similar, these examples (including Rilakkuma’s new role as Saitama Prefecture Police and Road Safety Public Relations Ambassador) differ from Japanese usage of Yuru Kyara in that these characters already exist. You can probably easily name a few of the Yuru Kyara of Japan; some of the most famous include Kumamon from Kumamoto Prefecture, Domo-kun from NHK, and Melon Kuma from Hokkaido.
As Rilakkuma settles into his new role as Saitama Prefecture Road Safety Police Public Relations Ambassador, and with so many other cute characters taking over government positions, we can’t help but keep ourselves. ask if / or when Japan plans to one day elect a mascot as prime minister. After all, would it be so strange?
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