Tuesday, May 24, 2011

For the Ladies: Japanese Actors in Commercials Pt. 2

I'm not exactly focusing on actors this time per se, but now it's notable Japanese actresses that grabbed my attention. Finding commercials starring great actresses was a little trickier as they seem to be a bit more scarce, but what I could find was very interesting. Maybe the difficulty of finding commercials may be in part of the classic gender roles of what's expected of women that what's expected from men. In a country that for years was incredibly male dominated, even work in a commercial for a female may have been difficult.

Let me start this with my favorite of these commercials starring the beautiful Mariko Kaga (Pleasures of the Flesh (Etsuraku) (1965)) with her large, cartoon like eyes struggling to wake-up before goofily squeezing out White Lion toothpaste and brushing her teeth intensely. A little bit on the Richard Lester tip in humor and with the dental equivalent of A Hard Day's Night's (1964) collage shots of The Beatles:

(Uploaded onto YouTube by user Vintage50D)

Yasuzo Masamura muse, Ayako Wakao (Street of Shame (Akasen chitai) (1956), Red Angel (Akai tenshi) (1966)) co-stars in this commercial from 2000 for multibillion dollar company, Nomura Holdings. She might be a little over made up and not given a lot of attention, but it's still nice to see her looking well:

(Uploaded onto YouTube by user mechanistx0)

Then we have the untraditionally beautiful Kyōko Kishida (An Autumn Afternoon (Sanma no aji) (1962), The Woman in the Dunes (Suna no onna) (1964)) with her wide lips and her triangular shaped face, enjoying a hot summer afternoon with a loved one by topping off the end of the gorgeous day with a glass of Kirin Ichiban:

(Uploaded onto YouTube by user LINDMINATOR)

Let's end this with famous exploitation star, Meiko Kaji (Stray Cat Rock: Sex Hunter (Nora-neko rokku: Sekkusu hanta) (1970), Female Convict 701: Scorpion (Joshuu 701-gō: Sasori) (1972)) sensuously drinking Amaterasu Shōchū to the beat of her own song, Drinking Season Songs (Shuki no uta):

(Uploaded onto YouTube by user ksoik)

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