Japanese English Ad Copy

2012 Nov 28


Out of context this ad copy from a 2012 Nov 27 JShoppers.com email is reasonable… but when paired with photos of the product – a medium brown puffy down coat with burnt orange lining – is amusing.


From the same email this ad copy is describing another puffy down coat – only this one flares more over the hips and the down channels angle down into a chevron in the front.  (The channels on the sleeves and the back appear to be oriented horizontally.)  The “Plump” brand for plus-size teens and 20-somethings?  A puffy down coat to make you look slim?

2012 Oct 27

Kaka Udon Kitchen opened in San Francisco Summer of 2012.

2012 Sep 5

Somewhat a form of Engrish, advertising text by Japanese companies aimed at English-speaking audiences is often inadvertently amusing and sometimes is cringe-inducing.  (For examples of Japlish, the Japanese variant of Engrish, see the engrish-signs-in-japan Web page.)

Heroine Make is a cosmetic line that promises to make you “look beautiful and perfect all the time, like a heroine from an anime” – complete with long, blond ringlets, pale pink complexion, Bambi eyes (with the crucial “double eyelid creases”), and a graceful swan-like neck.

“Even if you cry in this, you’ll still look beautiful.” “Heroine Make Eyelash Serum” “Serum with dense, rich oil that provides around lashes and provides intense care!”

Sadly, US image makers are no less prone to these unrealistic portrayals.  The latest ‘American Girl’ is Caroline who lives in Sackets Harbor in upstate New York in 1812.  In the introductory book Caroline is pictured on a sailing ship wearing a pale pink dress with a patterned ribbon at the high-waist and darker pink ruffles accenting the scoop neck and elbow-length sleeves.  To better frame her clear pink skin and bright blue eyes, she wears her long blond ringlets loose – quite the practical and safe look for a day sailing on a working vessel (not!).  But if Disney can prettify and dumb down the doll form of Pixar’s spunky princess Merida (from the movie “Brave”) then why can’t American Girl make a book cover and companion doll that fills that market’s need for blond ringlets and blue eyes?  (Unruly, riotously curly, carrot-red hair becomes sedate, glossy, copper-colored ringlets; almost non-existent eyelashes and thick, sandy-colored brows become long, black lashes topped by delicately arched copper-colored brows; a dark teal dress ripped at the shoulders, elbows, and neckline to allow for archery becomes a shiny, sky blue gown with gold trim; an almost flat-chested, healthy, outdoorsy physique becomes a relatively well-endowed, narrow-waisted and shouldered body with toothpick arms and tiny, lily-white hands; and the facial expression goes from fiercely determined and stubborn to brightly demure.  Oh, and pre-dress ripping, Merida wore a wimplet covering almost all of her hair rather than the ringlets-with-tiara version of the doll.  Note that the limited edition version of the Merida doll is closer to the movie version but the worried quirk of the doll’s eyebrows fails to capture the impulsiveness and fearlessness of the ‘real’ version.)

1 Reply to “Japanese English Ad Copy”

  1. Oh man, Disney is using you so bad and you don’t even realize it. Who do you think is lainekg these photos?I work for another studio and we’d do this all the time. Leak something, get it pulled (to generate buzz), then leak something again. Do a quick Google blog search. There are over 20+ leaked images. That’s not a leak, it’s a flood.The rumor is that Pixar is being proactive with their leaks because of the negative attention Cars 2 is getting. Words like sell out and franchise are being thrown around, since the development of this film has everything to do with helping Disney create a lifestyle brand for young boys, and less to do with story. The film, along with the consumer productions division and theme parks, are all resting heavily on this movie’s success.

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