Show Me!  Show You!


Kikkoman Fights Foreign Condiments!

Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavour.

- Truman Capote

This scores really high in the bizarre category.  In this vignette, the mighty Kikkoman is defending fine Japanese cuisine against foreign condiments like catsup, Worcestershire Sauce and mayonnaise.

It's hard to tell if this is part of a Japanese guerilla marketing campaign by the Kikkoman Corporation, a bored animator's project, or the work of a mad soy sauce fanatic.  Enjoy the intricate Japanese mystery that is Kikkoman, Defender of the Soy...  ("Show You" is, of course shoyu, the Japanese word for soy sauce.)

Click to Begin


Michael Guerrero provided this analysis to help unveil the mysteries of Kikkomaso:

From a friend of a friend:

If you take the word "man" out of Kikkoman, you get Kikko, anatomical word for the head of penis in Japanese.  The three characters on Kikkoman's underwear are Penis (Ki) Head (Kko) Man = Kikkoman.

The kitty was trying to decide what to put on medamayaki, (a sort of Japanese omelet).  The Kitty was saying "Should I use soy sauce or vinegar?"  So Kikkoman says, "For medamayaki, always soy sauce."

When Kitty appears next, he is still saying, "Vinegar or soy sauce?"  Kikkoman angrily repeats, "For medamayaki, always soy sauce!" then curses.  Evidently, Kitty then gets hanged by Kikkoman.  (or, possibly, he hung himself from shame?)  Kitty's last words are "Ohhh noooo."

Throughout the ad Kikkoman is fighting against foreign (that is Western) cuisine.  The three basic seasonings of Japanese cooking are soy sauce (Kikkoman), rice vinegar (su, the yellow jar head) and sugar (satoo, the one with the white cube head).  This trio fights the most popular foreign sauces in Japan: ketchup (the reddish-brown jar head, with the word "Heints" on his chest - supposed to mean "Heinz," surely) Worcestershire sauce (the box-face man with his hands behind his head), and mayonnaise (the wimpy, cowering yellow jar head).  The girl Kikkoman ends up in bed with seems to be from the ketchup clan.

One thing remains a mystery - why does Kikkoman smoke?


But Wait!  There's More...

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Problems
Date: 15 Mar 2005 00:21:26 -0000

This message was posted via the Feedback form.
Name: Mutsumoto Obinata (2 ch. member)
Comments: Hi,

I have a few comments regarding Michael Guerrero's analyses on Kikkoman.

First, Kikko does not mean penis at all.  Kikko means a turtle shell in Japanese.  Kikkoman, the brand, literally means the "turtle shell 10,000" - that is why the Kikkoman mark has a hexagon turtle shell mark.

Second, "Kikkomaso," the nickname for kikkoman, is a play on the name "ultimate muscle" or ultimate maso in Japanese.

Third, the kitty, the symbol of 2 ch (the term of Japanese net-discussion members and net creaters like me), suicided because of shame, as he said in the quote, "I am sorry, Kikkoman."  And Kikkoman did not hang the cat.

As for the girl... she is a symbol of the Chinese dumpling.  Ketchup is the enemy.

I hope you can make these corrections for me.

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