Interest Matsuno Brothers Team Up with Japan's National Baseball Team
posted on 2016-01-10 15:45 EST by Eric Stimson
Last year's surprise hit anime, Mr. Osomatsu, is heading to the baseball stadium this March for a collaboration with Samurai Japan, Japan's national baseball team. On March 5 and 6, 300 designated Mr. Osomatsu seats will be provided at warm-up matches against the team from Chinese Taipei (the Republic of China). The seats will be decorated with images of the Matsuno brothers and three other characters.
The seats come up with a gift set: one of nine different Mr. Osomatsu original baseball cards, a cardholder, and a mini-poster. To reserve the seats, fans must enter a lottery at Lawson Tickets, a ticket service provided by Lawson convenience stores. The total price is 4,000 yen ($33.70). The seats will be in the S section near third base.
Further aspects of the collaboration will be announced in the future; according to the Japanese news site J-Cast News, this might include the anime's voice actors opening the game or making an announcement. The March 5 game will take place at Nagoya Dome, while the March 6 match takes place at Kyōcera Dome in Osaka.
NPB Enterprise, the company that is planning the collaboration, says that it chose Mr. Osomatsu due to the anime's popularity across several generations (its original incarnation, Osomatsu-kun, debuted in 1966) and in particular among young women, a demographic NPB would like to see more of at its games. The crossover has sparked speculation online that the seat holders won't even show up or stay for the game, either out of disinterest in baseball or hesitation to reveal themselves as fujoshi (boys-love fans) on TV. NPB Enterprise's spokesman expresses optimism that they will stay given the high ticket price, but admits that "there may be some people who are only interested in the merchandise."
Anime tie-ins are often used to boost interest in struggling sports teams and attendance at their games. Sports anime are a natural fit, but they aren't necessarily the ones that are chosen; My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU TOO! collaborated with the Chiba Lotte Marines baseball team last year, for instance.