Fall has begun and with the changing of seasons comes brand new omake (Oh-mah-kay) freebies on coffee cans. This time, it’s the classic 70’s/80’s property Kinnikuman (known in the US as M.U.S.C.L.E. This promotion has been tremendously popular. The cans have been selling very well in most locations and I’ve seen plenty of my co-workers with these things on their desks.
The first thing you’ll notice is how cool the packaging is. Usually, omake will be attached to the coffee cans with either a plain clear cap or in cheap plastic baggies. Yudetamago, the company behind the promotion really went all-out here. The caps are super-cute versions of the top of each character’s head. The characters included are Kinnikuman, Uozuman, Robinmask, Buffaloman, Ramenman, and Terriman.
But that’s just the packaging. Inside, are little figurines, affectionately referred to by children of the 70’s and 80s as “Kinkeshi” (Keen-Keh-she), a portmanteau of “Kinnikuman” and “Keshigomu” (the Japanese word for eraser (the original Kinkeshi were real erasers, which is why certain originals are nearly impossible to find in good shape and command shockingly high prices)). In keeping with the nostalgic feel of these little guys, each are monochromatic with no paint applications.
But these aren’t ONLY cute little nostalgia pieces. After all this is the “Hataraku! Chojin Figure Collection” Which translates to “Work! Super Person Figure Collection!” Each of these serves a function…and is dressed accordingly!
Kinnikuman is dressed for construction, and serves as a card stand.
Uozuman is dressed as an electrician and serves as an earphone cord reel.
Robinmask is a bricklayer and a cord stand.
Buffaloman is wearing a mover’s uniform and is a smartphone stand.
Ramenman is, appropriately enough, dressed as a ramen cook and serves as a ramen stopper (It holds the ramen lid shut while the hot water cooks the noodles)
Finally, Terryman is dressed as a hotel “hotelboy” and serves as a key stand.
These are great. Definitely a great start to the fall omake promotions. The presentation in the eye-catching bubbles is great. The nostalgia factor has helped them fly off the shelves. And the semi-functional nature of the Kinkeshi means that they can be used at the office, prompting conversations that will, in all likelihood, include the name of the coffee they’re included with.
That coffee, by the way, is from the company Georgia and it’s a new flavor called “Shakin” (Shah-keen). I really like the taste and it’s a perfect coffee for the end of the work day, since an hour or two after the initial caffeine rush, it drops you like a bad habit, allowing for easy relaxation after work.
One more good thing to say about these. It seems that they weren’t distributed in equal numbers. Kinnikuman looks to have been shipped in *much* higher numbers than all the rest. I *greatly* appreciate this. Other omake campaigns have an even split, which means that the main character for series like Super Mario or Dragonball can be *really* hard to find. Kinnikuman was obviously going to be the most desirable freebie in this set, so good on the promoters for making sure that those weren’t gone on the first day of the promotion.