Not long after moving back to England from Colombia, my sister Melissa began to become interested in Japanese culture, especially anime and manga, after seeing our cousin being into it. As such, she became what pop-culturists would call an “otaku” – somebody, especially a girl, who is obsessed with all things weird and wonderful that Japan makes.
Melissa started to regularly watch anime series online, and one of them was Tokyo Mew Mew, or Mew Mew Power as it’s known outside of Japan. It’s the adventures of five teenage girls who are infused with the DNA of endangered animals to help save the world from the evil Deep Blue and his alien minions. (No, not the little yellow guys from Despicable Me…) When trouble is imminent, Ichigo (or Zoey in the English version) and her friends Lettuce (Bridget), Mint (Corina), Zakuro (Renee) and Pudding (Kikki) transform into the magical Mew Mews – a team of cat-girls turned superheroes.
Naturally, the colours of each of the Mew Mew girls inspired me to draw this fan-art of them. Ichigo/Zoey is obviously first up as she is the leader of the Mew Mews (or as they’re actually called, Tokyo Mew Mew, hence the name of the series). I didn’t draw the Mew Mews in any particular order, though it may be to do with their order of appearance when a transformation sequence plays in the show – in my experience of seeing (or rather, just passively looking over Melissa’s shoulder) the anime, Ichigo/Zoey always seemed to appear first, then Mint/Corina, Lettuce/Bridget, Zakuro/Renee and finally Pudding/Kikki. (Maybe Pudding/Kikki comes last because she’s the youngest Mew Mew?) However, funnily enough, Lettuce/Bridget and Mint/Corina are swapped around from the show’s order.
For a little easier identification, here’s all the Mew Mews and what colour they are:
- Ichigo/Zoey – pink
- Lettuce/Bridget – green
- Mint/Corina – blue
- Zakuro/Renee – purple
- Pudding/Kikki – yellow
Ever since then, I’ve been repeatedly inspired by Japanese animes, most notably Hetalia: Axis Powers and Pokémon (although I’d been into Pokémon way before I discovered Tokyo Mew Mew). And that influence didn’t stop at Tokyo Mew Mew, as you’ll see next week…