We’ve seen the power before of the Japanese government utilizing a charming mascot. The moe-fication of the Japanese Self-Defense Forces was a success, and the happy-seal mascot Umimaru has proudly served the coast guard for over 20 years.
But now it seems they want to take it a step further. Prefectural Internal Security Systems recently announced their proposal to, for the first time, use a real-life human as their mascot: international cleaning guru Marie Kondo. Their hope is to have her act as the face for the new “Spark Joy” taser weapons to be outfitted to Japanese police later this year.
▼ It’s time to “spark joy” in some criminals hearts… literally!
According to Mr. Shigatsu Ippi, the head of the organization, Marie Kondo was seen as the perfect mascot because her catchphrase “spark joy” could easily be linked to the new electrified weapons system.
“We’re always looking for new ways to soften the public image of police officers,” Mr. Ippi said at a recent press conference. “When people think of tasers, we don’t want them to think of them as scary weapons. We want them to think of the joy that they spark by keeping their neighborhoods safe.”
Mr. Ippi also added later that Marie Kondo’s popularity overseas could help put foreigners at ease if they see her familiar face on Japanese police officers’s uniforms during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
▼ “Whoa, what’s going on over there?! …oh, it’s just Marie Kondo making an
otaku prune their manga collection down to ten volumes.”
Another spokesperson for the organization, Ms. Uso Tsuki, commented on Marie Kondo’s potential position as taser mascot, saying: “We are very excited at the possibility of Kondo-sama serving as the image for the new police weapons system. From now on, when a criminal is being tased, we hope that the electricity flowing through their body will spark joy inside of them, and help de-clutter their messy lives.”
However, it seems that taser branding is only the beginning of the plans for Japanese police to adopt more of Marie Kondo’s “tidying up” philosophy. They are looking to implement a system where prisoners are required to fold their socks and underwear “Konmari style,” as well as “thanking” their prison cells for all of the wonderful memories they’ve made there.
▼ “Before Marie Kondo, it felt like I was living in a jail cell,” said one inmate from a trial program. “But now, it’s like I’m living in a… oh. Right.”