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Top 10 Weirdest Japanese Commercials

VO: Dan Paradis
Script written by Joseph Jo I dunno what you’re selling but SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Weirdest Japanese Commercials. For this list, we're taking a look at some of the most bizarre, irrelevant, and almost unfathomable advertisements from Japan. Special thanks to our user Oakley.24 for submitting the idea using our interactive suggestion tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 10 Weirdest Japanese Commercials


I dunno what you’re selling but SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Weirdest Japanese Commercials.

For this list, we’re taking a look at some of the most bizarre, irrelevant, and almost unfathomable advertisements from Japan. We’re also including commercials made in North America or by North American companies that aired exclusively in Japan.

#10: Gyunyu

Our first pick actually deserves credit for its originality. We’ve seen countless advertisements trying to promote how milk will make your bones strong and maybe even fashion you into an athlete. According to these series of commercial, Gyunyu, which is milk for Japanese, has more than just calcium in it, however. In all honesty, we don’t even know what’s inside the milk that’s being advertised, but if it helps you become a lion tamer, a ladies man and a chalk-dodger, we’ll take it! Nobody just drinks Gyunyu; they drink it with style! Can somebody please explain how the teacher turned into a giant piece of chalk, though?

#9: Sushi

Whoever directed this commercial did a fine job exposing their fetish for sushi. Here we have two strangers that suddenly get even stranger. Love at first sight is a common trope, but not sushi at first sight... and if this commercial’s sole purpose was to have us craving sushi on the first date, we’re not too sure if this is the best method of advertising. As a matter of fact, it looks like our lovers skipped dinner entirely and went straight to dessert. Avert your eyes, kids!

#8: Milk Seafood Noodle by Nissin

It only makes sense that a product called Milk Seafood Noodle would produce a phenomenally unusual commercial. While enjoying a cup of noodles on a snowy day, a woman is suddenly ambushed by two superhero-like figures, one of which is dressed as a cheese wedge and the other is dressed like a pepper or spice shaker. If that’s not creepy enough, they blast lasers out of their fingers and into the noodles. It seems like Nissin was going for a family-friendly tone here, but the results are simply horrifying.

#7: Tarako Pasta Sauce

This commercial might make you think you’re in “The Twilight Zone” as you watch an army of Kewpie dolls barge into a kitchen chanting, “Tarako!” For those that don’t know, tarako is salted roe normally made from the Alaska Pollock. When tarako is served plainly, they look slightly pinkish, much like the attire the dolls are wearing. Tarako can also be served as a pasta sauce, which the young girl in this ad seems extremely happy about. Since Alaska Pollack are known to swim in large schools, the Kewpies naturally band together. Given their conformist behavior, though, this looks less like a commercial for some delicious food and more like a recruitment video for a cult.

#6: Morinaga Choco Ball

If you thought those last few commercials felt like acid trips, wait till you get a load of this ungodly sight. As if giving a bunch of CGI Choco Balls chicken legs wasn’t weird enough, the creative team behind this advertisement also thought it would be a good idea to supply them with live-action heads. We’re not sure what they were thinking, but these designs look unbelievably freaky, not to mention... kinda cheap. Clearly all the money for this commercial was spent on the song, which is admittedly kinda… catchy.

#5: Bob Sapp for Puccho

In this wacky commercial for Puccho’s soft candy, it seems like the entire budget went towards paying Bob Sapp. Hell, the production crew couldn’t even afford Sapp’s entire body! Only his giant head and right hand make an appearance! Being an American professional wrestler and comedian, Sapp could have at least tried to impress us with his acting. Yet, his performance here is about as lazy as the commercial itself. We would pay good money for one of those yellow cell phones, however.

#4: Nicolas Cage for Pachinko Maker Sankyo

Sankyo, the maker of the Pachinko pinball-like mechanical game, used as an arcade and gambling machine, went all in by hiring Nicolas Cage to be their spokesperson. All he had to do was one job and that was to promote Sankyo, but Nick definitely turned the tables by making his Oscar-winning performance the subject of all things in these series of commericals. It’s obvious he’s having a blast being in front of the camera, but the bigger question is if Sankyo saw any profit after this, because these days, Cage’s bank account seems to be having a hard time. In fact, don’t be surprised if you see him at one of these Pachinko machines!

#3: Pepsiman

During the mid-90s, Japanese’s Pepsi branch decided to create an iconic figure to represent their brand solely in Japan. Where Coca Cola may have those adorable polar bears, Pepsi now had Pepsiman. This mascot also appeared in comic books and video games, but that didn’t last too long. All credit for his design goes to the comic book artist Travis Charest for trying to create a refreshing character, but in the end Pepsiman came off as pretty ridiculous. A true superhero doesn’t need corporate sponsors.

#2: Arnold Schwarzenegger for Alinamin V Energy Drink

What better way to promote an energy drink than getting an action hero like Arnold Schwarzenegger to endorse it? Hilariously, even though it doesn’t take place in a work environment, you can tell these businessmen, including Arnold, are having trouble in the middle of their game. We don’t know what the quarrel is about, but what we do know – or rather, what the ad tells us, is that this mini energy drink supplied all the energy Arnold needed to give his exceptional laugh and become the life of the party! Oh and by the way, this isn’t the only ridiculous commercial he’s done for them…

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:

Tommy Lee Jones for Boss Coffee

Andy Warhol for TDK

Rubberduckzilla - Oasis

Little Red Riding Hood - Anabuki

Third Grade Teachers – Fanta

#1: Banana Man - Dole

Everybody wants a piece of Mr. Banana Man. Sporting a banana hairdo, a banana mustache, and a pair of banana fingers, this guy must get plenty of potassium in his diet. Even though his golden bananas certainly look appetizing, we wouldn’t recommend eating the ones that come out of his nose. While it probably isn’t easy being Banana Man, being his girlfriend must be even harder. This guy only has bananas on his mind, making no time for his lady. Hmm… we wonder if he has a banana in his pants too.

Do you agree with our list? What do you think is the weirdest Japanese commercial? For more fascinating lists of top 10s published every day, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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