While Koronon is the first covid-19 pandemic-specific mascot, other ones have also popped up to help fight the pandemic. Photo Credit: SOPA Images via Getty Images

Society Japan20. May 2021

It’s Pink, It’s Fuzzy, and It’s Here to Fight Corona!

In Japan where mascots are a part of the culture, a new one is now dedicated solely to help citizens curb the spread of COVID-19, and acts as a visible reminder to practice sanitary precautions through the streets of Tokyo.

“Mascots help take the edge off when grim and serious matters are being discussed,” says Chris Carlier, who spent the last ten years documenting Japan’s mascots on the social media account Mondo Mascots.

Created by Al-pha Co., a temporary staffing and event promotion agency, Koronon – which loosely translates to “no corona” – is a pink mascot that wears a face mask, a transparent face shield that says “Stay healthy & safe”, and a purple heart-shaped shield with “Koronon” written on it. The mascot also sports a “Covid-19” crossed out with a red X on its belly and encourages social distancing and hand washing, and hands out free masks.

Smithsonian Magazine

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