Gudetama Inspires A Different Kind of Cute

How an egg yolk from Japan wins hearts across the world.


Gudetama Inspires A Different Kind of Cute | How an egg yolk from Japan wins hearts across the world.

Cute things come from Japan. From Pikachu and Cinnamoroll to Hello Kitty, the Japanese love adorable icons that are part of the Japanese depiction of cute, known as “kawaii.”

Gudetama is such a character, yet is more relatable than its predecessors. With a personality that spreads honesty, vulnerability, and hope to many around the world, this little egg is literally a smash.

Gudetama is a portmanteau of the Japanese words gudegude and tamago and together, they mean “lazy egg.” Gudetama was developed by Sanrio in 2013 when the company decided to add a food-related character to their famous collection. Although a cheerful salmon fillet called Kirimichan won first place in the company competition, a slippery little egg came in second and soon won over the hearts of the Japanese.

This peculiar character is neither male nor female. It has no head, no body, no finger, or toes. It has a droopy mouth yet not teeth and its eyes are simple lazy-looking ovals. Yet, it has personality plus and will do anything for a drop of soy sauce.

After a 2014 debut on TV, Gudetama gained popularity in Japan and around the world. Today, this droopy egg can be seen on backpacks, keychains, T-shirts, manga comics, and in anime series. Although the character was created with the preadolescent market in mind, teens and adults fell for Gudetama’s rather melancholy attitude.

With many people feeling overworked, busy, and worried, it is comforting to find a character who often feels tired and speaks openly about it. Gudetama is often portrayed in videos lying on an egg white and covered by a blanket of bacon. Lying back, Gudetama sighs, “Resting is important too.”

In fact, Gudetama’s vulnerability shows the importance of opening up and discussing one’s feelings, according to Ever Widening Circles. The message is that by cracking open one’s shell and showing the softness inside is liberating as it allows the authentic self to emerge.

Many people love this character because they can identify with the soft egg and feel empathy. As Gudetama likes to say, “everyone’s an egg too.” Who would have thought that a lethargic egg could animate so many people across the world? 

Gudetama is now seen soaring across skies, relaxing on a suitcase on the Taiwanese Eva Airline. This popular egg yolk also has its own themed cafes in Osaka, Tokyo, Singapore, and Brighton. And, Gudetama even has its own very active Twitter account.

This soy-sauce loving lazy egg shows that everyone wants to be heard, to nurture, and be cared for. As Gudetama hides under a blanket, the narrator from the TV show gently reassures this cute, soft egg by saying, “Today might be a better day.”

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