Thursday, June 17, 2004

Cross-cultural appeal: Seattle Post-Intelligencer columnist Bill Virgin looks at Japan's latest pop-culture export, Tare Panda, and wonders why such cartoon characters appeal to American youth:

"The appeal also stems from products that create of 'an entire universe unto themselves,' Thompson says, 'one that requires a degree of dedication to understand which often, appealingly, separates it from standard adult popular culture.' Remember Pokemon and Pikachu? 'Kids can be experts about Yu-gi-oh while their parents and teachers remain completely oblivious to its meaning, and toddlers right up through adolescence can immerse themselves in the ever-more-populated world of Hello Kitty.'"