Mystery sausage identified

It turns out that the mysterious ‘walking sausage’ in my previous blog post was not a sausage at all. Thanks to the people who commented on that post, I can now tell you that the ‘mystery sausage’ is in fact a piece of cod roe (fish eggs), called ‘tarako’ in Japanese.

tarako or cod roe (fish eggs)

Tarako or cod roe (fish eggs). Image from Sakura House Blog. Click on the image to go to their site.

The tarako mascot that we saw in the supermarket was promoting tarako flavoured mayonnaise and pasta sauce. The mascot is called Kewpie-chan and it has its very own theme song. It goes たーらこーたーらこー、たっぷりたーらこー♪  Apparently the song was a big hit a few years ago. In the clips below you can hear the song and see Kewpie-chan in action.

Kewpie-chans making music:

Giant Kewpie-chans marching through a city. At least they stopped for the red light:

An army of Kewpie-chans rising out of the sea:

And last but not least a UFO beaming down a host of Kewpie-chans:

When watching these videos of marching pieces of tarako and listening to the monotonous song, I can’t help but be reminded of a zombie invasion. Actually it is a little bit scary to me, but funny at the same time.

In my experience, Japanese commercials are one of the biggest tokens of the cultural differences between Japan and the West that I have come across. I could spend hours in front of the TV in Japan, fascinated by the commercials. They are just so different from what we have in the West.

Some things that Japanese people might consider cute or funny, will be considered childish or downright weird by Westerners. I would love to hear what Japanese people think of Western commercials. Feel free to put your stories in the comments section!