It’s hard to overstate instant ramen’s importance in Japan. There are multiple instant ramen museums in the country, and at the beginning of the millenium, the Japanese voted instant ramen Japan’s most important invention of the 20th century.
Of course, no product in Japan is without goofy advertising campaigns. Some of my favorite commercials (CMs) of all time are for Nissin’s Cup Noodle. The premise: aliens walk among us, and they want to add delicious toppings to your instant ramen! I think that was the plot of Signs, right?
The CMs start out simply enough: a cheese alien (チーズ星人) shows up to put cheese into a woman’s instant ramen. How thoughtful!
But, like pretty much every Japanese CMs, over time they grow increasingly complex. Other characters, like mozerella and garlic aliens, were added on to complement the original cheese alien.
Even with all of the other characters, it’s clear that the break-out star of these commercials is the original cheese alien himself.
He started a solo career of sorts, appearing in his own CMs and even making TV appearances.
Now, all of these commercials are well and good, but I don’t know how I would react if I saw one of these aliens in real life.
They walk among us.
My best guess is I would act like the people in the commercials and just have a full-blown panic attack. That seems reasonable, right?