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Have you ever imagined what your national flag would look like as a Japanese anime character?
For most people, probably not.
To celebrate Tokyo 2020, a group of Japanese artists have created some awesome anime art and turned your national flags into a team of anime characters (samurais, monks, etc.).
Let’s see if they are amazingly creative representations of your country flags or … well, interesting interpretations from a Japanese perspective?
Let’s start with the Group of Eight.
United States as an Anime Character
The artists likely made him look youthful and attractive to reflect the young age of the United States as well as the worldwide appeal of American Entertainment among international youth.
A samurai in the Group of Eight, he holds the glowing gem of “America”. He’s known as the world police whose decision overrides everything, a dominant swordsman. His hobby is to watch American football.
Maybe the US right now would be too rough for a pretty boy like Dustin though.
Canada as an Anime Character
The artists really captured the hardy nature of those living in the Great White North, but you can be sure that underneath his cool exterior Mr. Canada can offer some warm apologies and sweet maple syrup for those he is friendly with.
The hunter of the Group of Eight holds the glowing gem of “加”. He often goes on a hunting trip following the beautiful scent of the maple syrup. His hobby is ice skating.
United Kingdom as an Anime Character
Quote: Hope for the best, and always be prepared.
The artists definitely reflect the elegance of UK history and the attitude of what was once the world superpower with Mr. UK. While he may look a little stuck up, most respect that Mr. UK is quite influential and deserving of his recognition.
Germany as an Anime Character
Quote: The more enemies, the greater the honour.
The many muscles and confident nature of Germany can also be interpreted as showing off Germany’s strong economic power, which is a quality that many Japanese artists admire about the country.
Also, wie findet ihr diese Darstellung? Ja oder nein? (So what do you think of this representation? Yes or no?)
France as an Anime Character
Quote: Beat the iron when it’s still hot. (Make hay while the sun shines.)
Oh là là, what a handsome fella with a streak of assertiveness, and his hair and skin tone kind of remind me of someone… Monsieur Macron, non?
While the French flag can be considered rather simple to some, this character captures the long and interesting history of French art and culture with his ornate armor and vibrant colors. Monsieur France also keeps the mature look of a veteran who has survived many revolutions.
Russia as an Anime Character
Quote: Even a cat appreciates kind words. (Russian proverb)
Mr. Russia is a sword fighter with hair as white as the snowy Siberian tundra, and he appears both comfortable and confident in his attire. His armour is not as heavy or detailed like that of his European cousins, but it still reflects the down to earth nature of the Russian people.
Italy as an Anime Character
Tomorrow’s windy weather affects only tomorrow. (literal)
Everything will turn out for the best.
Mr. Italy is a dashing young man who looks as confident in his looks as he is his cooking.
The host, Japan, as an Anime Character
From dawn to dusk, the beauty could turn into a skeleton. (literal)
Change is unpredictable, so seize the moment!
Sporting the classic anime protagonist look, Japan-san looks quite soft and relaxed through this character. The artists reflect the more peaceful and simple nature of present day Japan well, although the swords could probably still be quite menacing.
Korea as an Anime Character
Starting is half of the success.
Mr. Korea is quite the Bishie boy (a beautiful young man) here, and it fits with how Korea has stolen the hearts of girls across the world with its pop music and dramas. The drum may be what helps Korea produce the next Oppa Gangnam Style and Mr. Korea may be the ideal Oppa of this list.
Victory belongs to men with reasons. The unreasonable lose.
Mr. China has the longest hair and the longest history out of our group. He looks calm, determined, and ready for any fight that may come his way.
Spain as an Anime Chracter
Kindness and beauty don’t last.
Señor Spain looks like he has the finesse to fight a bull, but his eyes will make your heart want to Tango. His armour is colourful and bright, but on his face hides the dark history of a country that has undergone inquisitions and lost its many old colonies. The artists reflect well Señor Spain’s complex and layered past.
Vietnam as an Anime Character
To live, it is not to breathe. It is to act.
Mr. Vietnam is represented as a rather mystical man who represents Japan’s interest in ASEAN. Vietnam is both very familiar for the artists as it is another Confucian country like Japan, but many practices may seem strange and exotic as it still exists in Southeast Asia. You can see the immense value Mr. Vietnam places on education through the fact he is the only country wearing scholarly robes.
Babies bring cakes with them. (literal)
Children are born with good fortune.
Señor Mexico is vibrant with life and traditional symbolism that is quite impressive. The feathers on his shoulders are reminiscent of the Aztecs who inhabited the land before, and in many ways Mexico is just as colourful and interesting as them.
There are many more characters to drool over on the official website, World of Flags. You can support the Tokyo 2020 campaign by sharing the article and tweeting with the hashtag #worldflags_fa. Or, what’s even better, learn some Japanese with LingoDeer and travel to Tokyo in 2020.
To sum it up, all the characters are hands-down gorgeous despite the fact that they’re all men. As a team that teaches and promotes world languages and cultures, we think it could use more personas to portray world diversity. But overall we appreciate the artists’ effort in promoting Tokyo 2020 wholeheartedly.
Leave a comment and tell us what you think of the anime character of your country!
Related post: Essential list of Japanese travel phrases.