The author provides detailed reviews of anime released in the U.S. on Blu-ray and DVD.
Despite owing its conception to Disney, anime is a full-fledged Japanese medium. As such, it often mirrors the lifestyle of the common Japanese person, and that includes their commercial items of choice. It's easier to show a known brand that every Japanese person can relate to than invent new names for drinks or stores in every show.
As such, some brands tend to appear quite often in anime. Relatively few series will feature products with their name unaltered, but those with a keen eye can always spot the items being referenced. Here is a list of the ten most common Japanese brands spotted in anime.
10 Most Common Brands Seen in Anime
- C.C. Lemon
- Mono Eraser
- Campus Notebook
- Softbank and Docomo
- Family Restaurants and Convenience Stores
- Kirin Beer
- Starbucks Coffee
1. C.C. Lemon
A lemon-flavored soft drink from Suntory, C.C. Lemon can be seen in many anime series. This drink comes in small and large bottles and in cans. Its bright yellow color and simple name make it immediately identifiable. Look out for this drink whenever a character buys a can from a nearby vending machine.
2. Mono Eraser
The Mono plastic eraser by Tombo is the prevalent eraser used in Japan. It might seem odd that everyone will conform to one eraser company, but the dominance of Mono in both Japanese schools and universities cannot be overlooked. It's fairly easy to recognize this eraser because of its blue and black stripes. The name Mono is always scrambled on purpose and written as Nono, Momo, or Nomo.
3. Campus Notebook
Just like the Mono eraser, it seems that the Japanese have a special affinity toward notebooks made by Campus. If you see a notebook in your anime, the word Campus (or a variation of it) will be written on it 99% of the time.
4. Sony (Electronic Goods in General)
No surprise here. Sony is one of the biggest Japanese conglomerates around so it makes sense that a lot of electronic appliances in anime bear the Sony mark. Sony also invented the Blu-ray disc—the favorite media storage device of the modern otaku.
Ramune is a carbonated soft drink that comes in an oddly shaped bottle and is manufactured by either Sangaria or Morinaga. It is often drunk during festivals but can be bought all year long. The bottle is either made of glass or plastic but always retains its peculiar shape.
One feature of Ramune that makes it extremely popular among children is the transparent marble that is placed inside the bottleneck. In anime, Ramune is often used to signify nostalgia or that magical period of childhood.
A common Japanese snack that you can always find at every party or gathering. Since its debut in 1966, Pocky has become an indisputable part of Japan's culinary culture. So much so that an unofficial day called Pocky Day is celebrated in Japan and Korea every year on November 11th. You can be sure anime characters also enjoy munching on Pocky from time to time.
7. Softbank and Docomo (Cellphone Service Providers)
Two companies stand at the top as Japan's cellphone service providers—Softbank and Docomo. However, for some reason or another, Docomo is less referenced in anime than Softbank.
Today smartphones are seldom branded in Japan, but in the past, when you bought a phone from Softbank or Docomo, it would always carry the company logo on the front or back cover. When you see a cellphone in an anime, look closely at the design of the phone. There's a chance you will see a Softbank or Docomo reference.
8. Family Restaurants and Convenience Stores
Convenience stores (or "combini" in Japanese) and family restaurants play an indispensable part of modern Japanese life and often provide the background for both anime series and TV shows.
The family restaurants you are bound to encounter in anime are Jonathan's, Denny's, and (less often) Royal Host. There are many convenience store chains in Japan, but 7 Eleven easily takes the cake in anime appearances.
9. Kirin Beer
The Japanese love their beer and drink it often. There certainly is no shortage of beer companies in Japan. That said, Kirin is the champion when it comes to being featured in anime series and movies. It seems directors and animators have a soft spot for this particular beer brand.
10. Starbucks Coffee
Yes, the old familiar neighborhood Starbucks. Japan may be an economic powerhouse, but, as many Americans and Europeans living in Japan will openly tell you, it offers few choices when you get the urge for a cup o' joe. It's baffling when you first arrive in Japan and find out there are no Japanese coffee chains.
The only big coffee chains around are Starbucks Coffee and Tully's Coffee—both of which are American companies. In anime, Starbucks rules supreme. Tully's can also be seen from time to time, but usually, when your favorite anime characters crave some coffee, they sit at the nearby Starbucks clone.
Sukhee on July 04, 2016:
Lol just so you know, ramune is a PRODUCT not a brand. Get your facts right pls