Is Mr Popo an alien too?

Discussion regarding the entirety of the franchise in a general (meta) sense, including such aspects as: production, trends, merchandise, fan culture, and more.

Moderators: Kanzenshuu Staff, General Help

User avatar
MasenkoHA
I Live Here
Posts: 3107
Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2017 9:38 pm

Re: Is Mr Popo an alien too?

Post by MasenkoHA » Mon Jan 04, 2021 4:30 pm

Japan also has it’s own history of blackface

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/community/ ... blackface/


Like, if you’re still trying to argue that Mr.Popo isn’t based on racist stereotypes you’re in pure denial or incredibly thick headed.

User avatar
TheSeductiveTomato
Not-So-Newbie
Posts: 58
Joined: Sun Aug 18, 2013 1:02 am
Location: United States
Contact:

Re: Is Mr Popo an alien too?

Post by TheSeductiveTomato » Mon Jan 04, 2021 10:27 pm

In hindsight maybe turning Popo blue wouldn't have been such a bad idea.

Googaliemoogalie
Newbie
Posts: 19
Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2018 5:25 am

Re: Is Mr Popo an alien too?

Post by Googaliemoogalie » Tue Jan 05, 2021 6:15 am

I Think Popo was made out of ignorance of western culture. For example: A lot of people of Hindu faith use the ancient symbol for peace and good luck. The Swastika. BUT since the nazis perverted it, any westerner seeing a Hindu with a swastika on their front door would think they're nazis. But they are not.
I believe Toriyama used Popo as a copy of an art style he saw once, not knowing what it was or what it meant to a lot of people. Ignorance? yes I think so.
Kind of like the way he uses English words as onomatopoeias "BOOAAATTTT". Not his fault but I know a few Japanese people that explain that they just don't know things from other cultures.
This is my opinion. But for sure Popo was never meant to be a black human. And no he isn't an alien. He is a mystical being that is God's attendant.
From a mystical portion of Dragonball and I hope he isn't retconned like Tenshinhan was attempted to be.

MyVisionity
Advanced Regular
Posts: 1075
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2004 11:51 pm
Location: US
Contact:

Re: Is Mr Popo an alien too?

Post by MyVisionity » Tue Jan 05, 2021 8:32 am

Adamant wrote:
Mon Jan 04, 2021 4:02 pm
MasenkoHA wrote:
Mon Jan 04, 2021 3:53 pm
It is the entire package of Mr.Popo when combined together that makes him a racist caricature.
How? What about him makes him a "racist caricature" rather than a genie? He looks like a genie, he dresses like a genie, he talks like a genie, he's a servant like genies are, he has a magic carpet like genies do, he's got big lips and weird teeth like the most famous pop culture genie at the time did... what about him is it that makes you so insistent he's not just a genie when everything you list is "things Toriyama would associate with genies" and not "things Toriyama would asociate with black people"?
As noted earlier it's the pitch black skin tone, bright red lip-color, and rounded eyes that make Popo more than "just a genie". There's the genie portion, yes, and then there is the darkie iconography on top of it. Of course not all of Toriyama's Black characters will resemble Popo, because Popo is supposed to be a caricature.

Googaliemoogalie wrote:
Tue Jan 05, 2021 6:15 am
I Think Popo was made out of ignorance of western culture. For example: A lot of people of Hindu faith use the ancient symbol for peace and good luck. The Swastika. BUT since the nazis perverted it, any westerner seeing a Hindu with a swastika on their front door would think they're nazis. But they are not.
I believe Toriyama used Popo as a copy of an art style he saw once, not knowing what it was or what it meant to a lot of people. Ignorance? yes I think so.
Kind of like the way he uses English words as onomatopoeias "BOOAAATTTT". Not his fault but I know a few Japanese people that explain that they just don't know things from other cultures.
This is my opinion. But for sure Popo was never meant to be a black human. And no he isn't an alien. He is a mystical being that is God's attendant.
From a mystical portion of Dragonball and I hope he isn't retconned like Tenshinhan was attempted to be.

Nah, Toriyama knew what the Blackface style was because, as noted previously, it has a history in Japan and is/was popular in cartoons and the media. Whether he knows the full meaning behind the imagery is a different story, but he certainly wasn't totally ignorant of what he was drawing. And even if he had been, it would not make the result any less racist.

It's racism. Undeniable racism.

User avatar
pepd
Beyond Newbie
Posts: 197
Joined: Mon Apr 06, 2020 6:52 pm

Re: Is Mr Popo an alien too?

Post by pepd » Sat Jan 09, 2021 4:20 am

He may be based on the caricature of a black person, but I seriously doubt he was meant to be one.
Until a few years ago I was sure he was a shinjin. I think they should make him one, his design fits (they vary in shape and color, long lifespan and South Kaio has similar lips) and would close nicely with the lore.

Post Reply