Now THIS is Stuck in My Head

27 02 2012

You have to hand it to Japanese advertisers; they come up with some of the greatest, catchiest jingles.  I think Americans expect Japanese commercials to be crazy, like a Kyary Pamyu Pamyu video or something, but they’re not.  Japanese commercials are very normal commercials, they advertise the same things here that they do wherever you’re from: cars, cleaning products, movies… just normal stuff.  It can be difficult to be objective when talking about foreign commercials, because after 36 years of being subjected to the commercials with the same ideas being recycled over and over, anything “new” seems fresh.  I’m sure it’s the same for anyone living anywhere else.

One of my favorite series of commercials in Japan are the ones that run for Fit’s chewing gum.  Here’s what I’m talking about:

Which is directly related to this:

I think I like it because of the way the chromatic scale is used in the song.  It reminds me of the music used in the anime 天使になるもんっ! (I Want to be an Angel!) from waaaaaaay back in 1999.  The music really made that show for me.  Actually, the relationship between sound and image is one of the things I like most about filmmaking.

In 2008 and 2009 Fit’s had a contest where people could film themselves doing one of the dances featured in the commercials and post it to YouTube.  The video that had the most views would be the winner, and they would get 1 million yen and a years supply of Fit’s gum.  I was actually impressed to find that 2 non-Japanese people won the contest, and then much less impressed to find they had won by essentially bribing people to watch the video and comment on it.  That to me is cheating, and may explain why the contest wasn’t continued past 2009.  Here are some of my favorite submissions from those two contests.

Oh, and if you’re interested in what they’re saying in the song, it translates to something like:

“No-zo No-zo Nozomi- (who is Nozomi Sasaki, the girl) or Ta-ke Ta-ke Takeru (Takeru Sato, the boy)
If you chew, it’s funyan nyan nyannyanyan
If you chew, it’s funyan nyan nyannyanyan
If you chew, it’s soft, LOTTE’s FIT’S.  FIT’S!”


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