Earlier this year, NJPW and Toei animation announced the production of a new Tiger Mask anime called Tiger Mask W (pronounced "Double"), and this week, the new character made his debut at New Japan's King of Pro Wrestling event, taking on his equally fictional opponent, Red Death. So yes: anime is real. And so is pro wrestling.
New Japan Pro Wrestling
Should you ever doubt that Fujiko Fujio's Doraemon is truly ubiquitous in Japanese pop culture, consider this: Last night at Wrestle Kingdom 10, the biggest event of the year for New Japan Pro Wrestling, the action in the sold-out Tokyo Dome stopped for a few minutes so that everyone's favorite gadget cat from the future could take the stage dressed like a caveman to promote his new movie.
His thirty-ninth movie.
In her 40 years as a global icon, Hello Kitty has been involved in some pretty strange business ventures. That's probably why her reach in the market goes far beyond just stuffed animals and pencil cases and into stuff like a rocket fist-firing robot, that toaster that burns her face into your bread and the theme park attraction where she leads Noah (of Ark-building fame) back from "the far edge of the galaxy" in a parade of animals. This week, though, her latest business venture was announced, and it's teaming up with New Japan Pro Wrestling for a line of merchandise.
It seems the world is finally reshaping itself according to what I want. Check out the t-shirts below!