Japanese advertising can be strange. Recently I saw floating boy band heads kissing the TV screen and chanting “kiss my…kiss my…kiss my…” for a chewing gum commercial.
That said, although Japanese advertisements can get a little weird, one great thing about Japanese companies is that they love collaborations. You can get a lot of otaku-grade freebies, and see your favorite anime characters showing up on unexpected (and unrelated) merchandise all the time.
This little K-on girl came with my Oi-Ocha green tea, which I buy just about every day for my caffeine fix.
And when I first arrived here it was Final Fantasy 13 Elixir, which tasted suspiciously like 7Up.
And recently there’s been a bit of buzz about the Dominoes Pizza/Vocaloid collaboration. Download the smartphone app and buy a Hatsune Miku Dominoes Pizza and she does a performance on your phone using the pizza box as a stage.
Even if you’re not a Vocaloid fan, that’s still pretty sweet, for the technology that enables it if nothing else.
And unlike elsewhere, where competing companies vie for the right to put their logo on whatever product they have legal control over instead of joining forces for the greater good, you can find TV specials like the One Piece/Dragonball Z/Toriko special, where the casts joined forces to fight an evil alien invasion. Or, indulge in an otaku orgy and play the Dragonball, One Piece, Naruto, Toriko fighting game, J Stars Victory!
But for right now, Dragon Ball Z orange soda is in vending machines across Japan.
A few months ago, the original Dragonball soda arrived to a salivating audience of caffeine hungry otaku. The cast contained Goku, Bulma, Master Roshi, Yamcha, Krilin, Tien, Yachiro, Pilaf, and Shenron. (I was lucky enough to get Goku and Shenron, though I was a bit disappointed about Bulma.)
If you were hoping to get Vegeta or other Z characters, the current offering is DBZ soda. There is the normal orange soda, as well as DBZ Zero for the more calorie conscious heroes, all of which feature the DBZ line up. I got Piccolo, my favorite (and the coolest character before the only ones that mattered were super saiyans.)
How does it taste? Well, the normal soda tastes just as you might imagine an orange soda aimed at kids (and big kids) might taste–wonderfully orangey, but a bit too sweet for most adults to enjoy on a regular basis. And DBZ Zero Soda tastes pretty much like any zero calorie soft drink is suppose to taste–awful. It’s like drinking a mouthful of peach fuzz.
Anyhow, it’s out now, but these kinds of products are often short lived, so you if you want to catch ’em all, you might want to be quick about it. Japan likes to keep specialty products rather limited. Food, for instance, is very seasonal. Many foods and drinks can’t be found outside they’re exclusive sales window. The original Dragonball Soda, by the way, is already gone–off riding into the sunset on Shenron’s back, I suppose.
So if you’re in Japan, and they’re still around, buy a can or two of Dragonball Z Orange Soda. You just might go Super Sayin.