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Pop Team Epic's Latest Episode Inspires 'Hellshake Yano' Meme

posted on by Jennifer Sherman

Pop Team Epic's unique and inscrutable nature lends itself to meme creation. Unsurprisingly, the anime's seventh episode, which debuted on Saturday, has inspired a fittingly bizarre meme. The "Hellshake Yano" meme took off on Twitter in Japan on Monday, inspiring a wide variety of official celebrity and company accounts to spread the meme.

In the anime's seventh episode, titled "Hellshake Yano," Popuko talks to Pipimi, but Pipimi zones out. Pipimi daydreams about a band member named Yano whose bandmates suddenly can't make it to an imminent concert because the trains stopped. Yano's manager wants to cancel the concert, but Yano decides to go on stage and wow the crowd with his guitar skills alone. Unfortunately, Yano breaks a guitar string during his solo. Yano doesn't want to give up, so he decides to use the five remaining strings and then tunes his guitar to make it work. Yano's manager remarks that Yano's performance is "rocking the heart of hell." Yano acquires the name Hellshake Yano, and the crowd continues to go wild at his performance. Suddenly, Pipimi snaps out of it as Popuko asks her if she's listening. Pipimi apologizes and says "I was thinking about Hellshake Yano."

The phrase "I was thinking about Hellshake Yano" became the hashtag for the meme on Twitter. Capitalizing on the Twitter trend, many posters began using "I was thinking about Hellshake Yano" to describe their moods and daily lives.

The official Japanese Twitter account for the Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle film is gearing up for the film's release in Japan on April 6. While expressing excitement for the film, the person in charge of the account seems to have lost their train of thought mid-tweet and started chanting "Hellshake! Hellshake!," just like the crowd does in the anime's segment.

Pipimi's escapist daydreaming about Hellshake Yano is relatable, contributing to the meme's popularity. However, many fans are also impressed by the production of the anime's Hellshake Yano segment. Pipimi's thoughts about the enthusiastic rock star are not traditionally animated. In a live-action scene, two men flip through various illustrations in notebooks to act out the scene.

One of corned beef brand Nozaki's Hellshake Yano tweets pays homage to the anime's original flipbook-style scene. A man appears to "tune" a can of corned beef, similar to the way Yano tunes his guitar after the string broke.

Nozaki previously jumped on a different Twitter bandwagon last month when companies began vying to sponsor the new Tiger & Bunny anime.

Character accounts also got in on the Hellshake Yano action. For example, in one tweet, small pandas tried to get the attention of the big Mochimochi Panda, but apparently he was thinking of Hellshake Yano.

Similarly, Fukunyan said, "I was thinking of Hellshake Yano, but... I was thinking about who Hellshake Yano is."

Meanwhile, a pigeon inexplicably at Takara Tomy's offices got distracted while apparently on the way to a meeting. The company's tweet reads, "A while ago, on the way to go to the conference room, Pigeon was also thinking about Hellshake Yano."

Other companies to tweet the Hellshake Yano meme include Suguru's Big Katsu snack brand, PC shop Ark, Tower Records' Ario Yao shop, taxi service Kumamoto Taxi, and spring water company Crystal Geyser. Some of the tweets use the hashtag "Magma Mixer Murata," which is a related Pop Team Epic-inspired meme. Both Kumamoto Taxi and Crystal Geyser also participated in the Tiger & Bunny sponsor Twitter trend in January.

Source: Animate Times

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