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Anime's Media MixFranchising Toys and Characters in Japan$
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Marc Steinberg

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780816675494

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816675494.001.0001

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Candies, Premiums, and Character Merchandising: The Meiji–Atomu Marketing Campaign

Candies, Premiums, and Character Merchandising: The Meiji–Atomu Marketing Campaign

(p.37) 2 Candies, Premiums, and Character Merchandising: The Meiji–Atomu Marketing Campaign
Anime's Media Mix

Marc Steinberg

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter examines how the formal characteristics of anime allowed it to expand outward, creating ties between diverse media and commodities. It addresses the following questions: How did anime become the commercial system we now recognize it to be? By what techniques are the potentially disruptive rhythms of motion-stillness in anime translated into the movement and stasis of media-commodities and their circulation? How did the motion-stillness of anime open outward onto and indeed produce transmedia consumption? The analysis focuses on confectionery Meiji Seika’s use of an Atomu sticker in its wildly successful Marble Chocolates campaign. It suggests that the drawn image of Atomu enabled a convergence of media and objects around it, and contributed to the formation of a particularly systematic image-thing network around anime. The success of the Meiji-Atomu sticker campaign enshrined the then emergent practice of character merchandising in the commercial and affective canon of postwar Japan.

Keywords:   anime, media, commodities, transmedia consumption, convergence, Meiji Seika, Atomu sticker, Marble Chocolates, advertising campaign

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