Tuesday, December 5, 2006

National "HIT" Products 2006

The megahit products for this year in Japan have been announced yesterday and it's quite fun to view the chart because it reflects the political, economic and sociocultural news and current of the year. The way they list the products too is pretty interesting and very Japanese. Products (not necessarily tangible, however) are listed like the sumo ranking chart using sumo rank names like yokozuna and so on, and the chart also compares East and West (so there is the East yokozuna and West yokozuna and on and on).

Anyway, so let's have a look at what sold well in Japan this year.

[East (from high to low rank)]
yokozuna: Nintendo DS Lite and softs
ozeki: --- (=none)
sekiwake: "The Da Vinci Code"
komusubi: TSUBAKI (shampoo targeting Japanese women for beautiful Japanese hair)
maegashira 1: flat-screen TV
maegashira 2: "one seg" (one segment devices implanted in mobiles etc. whereas the usual T-DMB takes 13 segs)
maegashira 3: "Oh Japan" and "Handkerchief Prince" (national baseball team led by field manager Oh / winner pitcher of the summer national high school baseball tournament Saito Yuuki got this "nickname" since he used this particular handkerchief instead of his arm or sleeve to wipe his sweat. "prince" because he's handsome)

[West (likewise)]
yokozuna: --- (=none)
ozeki: mixi (SNS)
sekiwake: Wagon R (car)
komusubi: Labre drink
maegashira 1: "Oshare Majo Love & Berry" (fashion game&anime for grade school girls)
maegashira 2: "Kokka no Hinkaku" (literal translation: Dignity of Nation... a book discussing,,, the dignity of nation,,, which could be understood as nationalism)
maegashira 3: Arakawa Shizuka (gold medal winner of Turin Olympics women's figure skating)

The list goes on a little bit more but I'll cut it here. I was quite surprised to see no same products or names in the ranking lists for East and West, and both of them don't look like they have a certain... rule? I don't know if I can call it a "rule" but they appear to me as pretty random.

All of them can be described "domestic" too. Could this be a portrayal of our homey love for the country and culture, or a realistic reflection of our indifference to int'l events etc.?

Year 2006 has only 26 days left now. Maybe it's a good time to look back at what happened to myself and around me.

What does your country's "hit" ranking look like?

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