A Japanese donut chain has pulled their Pikachu-shaped donuts for being just a little too creepy.
Ok, a lot creepy.
In Japan, Pikachu is seen as a sort of national mascot. They have Pikachu dance routines performed by people wearing giant inflatable costumes, Pikachus adoring the sides of aircraft and buildings, and of course, Pikachus as adorable confectionary for the average citizen’s consumption.
The concept of adorable desserts that are almost too cute to eat is nothing new for Japan, which practically invented the practice, but a recent variation of an edible Pikachu head is garnering national attention thanks to its strange and often creepy profile.
Mister Donut is making headlines thanks to their recently released Pikachu-shaped donuts. The donuts themselves are pretty standard for Japan: a custard-filled ball of dough with two little ears and fondant and bits of candy to make the yellow and black Pikachu features.
They were debuted in select stores on November 9th, and almost immediately were pulled for being absolutely terrifying.
Here’s what the Pikachu donut should have looked like:
And here’s what they often ended up looking like:
Notice a bit of a problem?
Japanese news site Sora News 24 reports that the donuts did not sell well. Instead of making customers scream the donuts were too cute to eat, they screamed saying they were too ugly to bother purchasing.
"They’re far below the quality Japanese consumers expect in professionally made, store-bought sweets, though, even from such humble chains as Mister Donut," the site explained.
A side-by-side comparison shows the huge gap in expectations that led to Mister Donut store owners throwing out huge garbage bags full of horribly deformed Pikachus.
明日から始まるミスドのピカチュウドーナツ、、— 与田尻 (@yumikinaon) November 13, 2018
One Twitter user points out the biggest problem with the donuts (besides looking like alien recreations of an adorable Pokémon) is in the eyes. With the little white dots pointed skyward, the donut looks cute and innocent. With the dots dead center, it looks like the donut is pleading with anyone to quickly end its miserable existence.
ミスドの限定商品のピカチュウドーナツが店によって、というか１個１個のクオリティに差があることが話題になってて、物によっては怖すぎたりするらしい。— 陸マScientist (@rikumasc) November 12, 2018
Mister Donuts pulled the Pikachus with the promise of re-releasing on their planned November 16th national release date with stricter quality controls. The donuts are all handmade, so additional training seemed to be the answer.
It looks like Mister Donut bakers got their act together, since the new donuts look a lot better than the originals. Good thing too, since people are clamoring for their favorite electric mouse ever since the news of Detective Pikachu got announced.