News Gundam's Amuro, Japan's Prime Minister Bring Out Vote
posted on 2007-07-16 11:11 EDT by Egan Loo
The election administration of Yamagata Prefecture in northeast Japan has recruited Osamu Wakai, a comic talent most famous for "impersonating" Mobile Suit Gundam's main character Amuro Ray in improbable television sketches, to promote voter turnout. Wakai appears dressed as Amuro on posters and in public service announcements on television (15-second Windows Media Video) and radio. The theme of the campaign for the July 29 elections is "Senkyo, Ikimasu!!" (Election, Launching!!"), a homage to Amuro's "Gundam, Ikimasu!" line when launching his title robot. Wakai appeared in the episode of the TV Champion 2 contest program that crowned the Foreigner King of Akihabara.
Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is resorting to the otaku vote in his tough fight to maintain the Liberal Democratic Party's control in the same national elections. He launched his campaign Thursday with an appearance at Tokyo's Akihabara pop culture shopping district, where he told an outdoor crowd that "the battle starts from here." The Liberal Democratic Party is the ironically named conservative faction of Japanese politics that has ruled the country for most of its history after World War II.
Thank you to enjin2000 for the original Yamagata election article and dormcat for the TV Champion 2 reference.