Soy Sauce Warrior Kikkoman

Soy Sauce Warrior Kikkoman

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About the character

Kikkoman corporation, Kikkōman Kabushiki-gaisha) is an international company based in Japan.

Founded in 1917, it is based in Noda, Chiba Prefecture, Japan.

Its main products and services include soy sauce, food seasoning and flavoring, Mirin, shōchū, and sake, Juice and other beverages, pharmaceuticals, and restaurant management services.

(source : Wikipedia)

Soy Sauce Warrior Kikkoman (醤油戦士キッコーマン, Shōyu Senshi Kikkōman) -- or just “Kikkoman” (キッコーマン, Kikkōman) as most people know him -- is a superhero based on that sauce trademark, usually depicted as a muscle man, almost entirely naked, with a fish-shaped head.

2ch creation and the first flash animation

According to the wikipedia article, Soy Sauce Warrior Kikkoman was first drawn in Shift-JIS, the same way all other 2ch characters were drawn at that time, in the early 2000s.
While there isn’t, sadly, any archive from that particular period, here is, here a 2005 2ch thread showing how he is supposed to look like in Shift-JIS :

What is certain, however, is a fixed date. In September 2002, an user called Yogatori hosted, on his previous website first based on tripod.jp then infoseek.jp (both of them have been deleted) and finally his own website, a flash animation he made, entitled Fight ! Kikkoman !.
Here is a youtube video from it :

A first Japanese version exists that he has then translated into not-so-perfect English.
It basically describes the life of Soy Sauce Warrior kikkoman, promoting the use of the sauce trademark in a funny and musical way, picturing him fighting condiments and various types of food.
From that animation, one of the earliest mentions on 2ch BBS can be found here, the 5th of September 2002.

Spread to the Westerner’s web

In November the 16th 2002, Metafilter user XQUZYPHYR posted a link to the tripod.jp animation, saying that it was first found and linked by Tom Tomorrow.
By the comments ensuing as well as the title, many saw it as the new “Mr.Sparkle”, a reference to the Simpson’s In Marge we trust episode.

In the process, Yogatori made a sequel to his first animation called Banana and Shrimp showtime !.

Up to these days, Soy Sauce Warrior Kikkoman has been acknowledged by a great variety of non-Japanese speaking websites :

On the western web, Kikkoman is more well-known for his nickname : Kikkomaso. This is an intentional error in writing the name as it is rendered in Japanese katakana, the character for ‘n’ (ン) is very similar to the character for ‘so’ (ソ), and, much like in many American internet communities, the intentionally-misspelled version came to be used for ironic effect.

Cross-over with another meme : Magibon

Magibon, in one of her videos, featured the kikkoman warrior character, by filming her watching the initial Fight ! Kikkoman ! animation and doing some other stuff :

Japanese references and websites

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