Hikonyan (center) the host chara, Kumamon (to the left of Hikonyan) and the whole Funassyi family at the Gotouchi Chara Expo in Hikone on Saturday. (Source - Hikonyan’s Facebook page)
Funassyi will be making an appearance with Doara, the official mascot of the Chunichi Dragons baseball team, in Nagoya on Wednesday, November 23rd. As with all Funassyiland sponsored Funassyi live events, you’ll need to make a purchase to be eligible to enter a drawing for a ticket. Details as follows:
Purchase period: October 15 - 31
Eligible stores: All permanent Funassyiland stores, including the online store
Purchase amount: One entry sticker for every 2,000 yen worth of purchases (before tax)
How it works: You will need to put one sticker per postcard and send it in to the address indicated on the official page. Postcards must be postmarked November 5th or earlier (and you may need to use an official Japanese ‘kansei hagaki’ postcard). 734 entries will be drawn to receive a ticket.
The event will take place on November 23rd from 15:00 - 15:30 at Wink Aichi in Nagoya. To commemorate the event, there will also be some special Doara - Funassyi collaboration merchandise for sale.
Details here (Japanese)
Funassyi will once again be on the road this weekend, but it’s a bit hard to pinpoint when and where, at least for Saturday the 15th. He has tweeted that he will be at the Gotouchi Chara Expo in Hikone, and a Funassyiland booth is on the booth map (in the Kyobashi Stage area at K7), but he is not listed on the stage schedule at all. So chances are he’ll be making an unannounced appearance, and that the event is not pre-announcing exactly when and where because of past problems caused by some fans with camping out overnight and other such things. (It’s important to remember that the Hikone event’s main objective is to promote historic Hikone Castle, of which Hikonyan is the official chara, and the town of Hikone.) Since his merchandise booth is in the Kyobashi Stage area chances are he’ll be appearing on that stage…but it’s not official, of course. I guess that diehard fans will just be sitting there waiting for him to appear. If you are intending to go, you are highly encouraged to take public transportation - the venus is a 15 minute walk or a short bus ride from JR Hikone Station. (Access instructions in Japanese.)
Funassyi will definitely not be at Hikone on Sunday the 16th, since he’ll be appearing at the Fireworks and Music on the Horizon Festival at the San Marina Miyazaki Multipurpose Park in Miyazaki City, Miyazaki Prefecture in Kyushu. He’s scheduled to be on stage on or after 15:30; also scheduled for that time frame are singer May J. and veteran singer-actor Shigeru Izumiya. I’m not sure if Funassyi is going to appear on stage with either. The tickets for that event are already sold out however.
If you have the LINE app on your iOS or Android smartphone, you can now talk to Funassyi! Well, at least a bot version of Funassyi from the anime series Funassyi no Funafunafu na Biyori and the related app Funassyi no Funasanpo. In the LINE app, select ‘Add friend’ and choose ‘QR code’, then go to the official announcement page and point your phone camera at the QR code. (The big one is for iOS; for the Android QR code, scroll down.) The bot account should be added as a friend. If you chat to it (in Japanese only) it will respond to you if it knows the answer, such as ‘what’s the weather like in [location in Japan]?’ or ‘what are you doing?’ You can also ask it to play a game called the Yamanote Line Game with you. Again, it is all in Japanese, and the bot is quite basic, but it’s kind of fun to pretend you’re sort of interacting with The Pear.
More Funassyi on TV news: he’s going to be on the Nippon TV late-night show Getsuyo Kara Yofukashi (loosely translated, Staying Up Late On Monday Already, also known as the Monday Late Show) on October 24th-25th from 23:59-0:54 (or midnight to 1am). This is a kind of comedic banter/weird stuff show starring cross dressing pundit Matsuko Deluxe (right) and Shingo Murakami of the group Kanjani 8. (If you are unfamiliar with Matsuko Deluxe, he - or she - is one of the most popular stars on Japanese television right now.) Funassyi will be on a segment called Feed Matsuko Products of the Season, presenting - what else - nashi pears. Matsuko has already professed to loving nashi pears on past shows, and since both he and Funassyi are from Chiba prefecture (and apparently another Chiba legend, Jagaa (or Jaguar) will be on the show too, it should be quite fun.
The Nassyi Fes concert that took place in August at Budokan will be broadcast on BS Sukapaa, one of the Sukapaa or SKY PerfecTV! premium satellite channels, on November 5th at 11pm. BS Sukapaa is viewable if you are a Sukapaa subscriber in Japan. (Source: Nassyi Fes FB page)
ETA: November 5th falls within a free 10 day viewing period for all Sukapaa channels, so you can probably see the Nassyi Fes program even if you’re not a subscriber.
Funassyi appeared at a promotional event for Kawaguchi Auto Race in Saitama on Saturday, October 8th. Here is the Pear on the test drive car, whizzing around pretty fast and looking adorable in the process. (Video from Tokyo Sports newspaper)
According to the Nikkei, the world’s largest financial newspaper, Funassyi’s McDonalds Happy Set/Happy Meal promotion helped to boost the sales of the company in September by 11.5% over the same period last year. The Funassyi promotion is also cited for being responsible for raising per-customer purchase amounts by 4.1%, since it helped to bring more families into the stores. I suspect that the avid collecting of the Funassyi toys by Funatomo of all ages helped quite a lot too. Even my 74 year old mother ventured into her local McD’s for the first time in years to purchase two Happy Sets. She thought the Funassyi toys were adorable, although the chicken nuggets she got did not agree with her at all. ^_^;
Nikkei article (Japanese)
274ch, Funassyi’s new fan club/streaming video site, opened in August but I haven’t talked about it too much on these pages so far since it was only open to people in Japan. But now it’s possible for overseas fans to sign up as well. There are a few caveats however according to the FAQ page: you can only sign up with a credit card; the site and all support is in Japanese only; and if you want to receive the gifts you’re entitled to with a yearly membership or purchase the members-only merchandise you must have a Japanese shipping address (you can probably use a package forwarding service for that part).
The main reason to join the site is the videos, which are very entertaining. The screenshots above are from the latest video, Episode 1 of Funa’s Kitchen - the “cooking show that will never use olive oil!” (because the title is very similar to an existing TV cooking show called Moco’s Kitchen, which uses olive oil all the time). Watching Funassyi chat away freely while he attempts to chop vegetables is both funny and terrifying, since that blade gets really close to the pear skin. Other videos include Funassyi giving advice to fans on important life matters, Funassyi imitating various Japanese comedy acts, Funassyi and co. wandering around Mother’s Farm in Chiba (he does a bit of cooking there too, and the pear skin almost catches fire) and more. There’s also been some live streams before or during some events, such as a meet-and-greet with some fans before the Osaka Jo Hall Nassyi Fes concert.
(Many thanks to @aussienassyi for pointing out the revised FAQ page!)
274ch site (Japanese only)
Which are your top five favorite Funassyi TV appearances and why -- and are there videos available to view them on Youtube? (I sure hope so! ;b)
The 2017 Funassyi monthly planner (left) and weekly planner with fabric cover (right) will go on sale on October 22nd. The monthly planner will retail for 1,000 yen plus tax and the weekly for 2,500 yen plus tax. Funassyiland-exclusive extras are a sheet of stickers with the monthly planner, and a shitajiki (pencil board, a thin piece of plastic that you put under the page you’re writing on) with the weekly planner.
(Note: there was some confusion about the extra gifts included with the purchase of the calendars, but to reiterate, the extra gifts are included only if you purchase the calendars or planner/agendas from Funassyiland. Both the calendars and agendas will be available from other retailers including Amazon Japan, CDJapan, Amiami and so forth, but you won’t get the official freebie extras.)
Source: Nittele Service Twitter