Just a few days ago, American comedian and late-night TV host Conan O’Brien learned that while his popularity stretches far from his home nation, the number-one Conan in Japan’s heart is "Detective Conan," star of the anime/manga of the same name. Upset over his second-place-in-Japan status, and jealous of the fact that Hokuei, birthplace of Detective Conan creator Gosho Aoyama, is popularly known as “Conan Town.” O’Brien called out the city on his show, demanding three trillion yen ($270 billion) in indemnities for the appropriation of his given name.
Though O’Brien’s show is relatively unknown in Japan, his reaction to discovering the existence of Conan Town reached all the way to Hokuei, which responded through the city’s official Facebook page with a message that starts off formally cordial…but then makes a demand of its own.
“To: Conan O’Brien
From: Hokuei Town (“Conan Town”) in Japan
Thank you for introducing Hokuei to the world. Here is a famous Sir Arthur Conan Doyle quote to serve as a present to you from the mayor of Hokuei: 'There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact.' It is elementary my dear, Conan O’Brien. If you want the money, come visit Hokuei.”
But if he’s going to go all the way to Japan, O’Brien says he wants more than just three trillion yen, and he laid out three additional conditions in a new segment of his show.
Specifically, American Conan says he wants:
1. A building named after him. Since the local train station and airport are already associated with Detective Conan, O’Brien says he’ll settle for a Hokuei laundromat rebranding itself as “American Conan’s Fluff 'n Fold.”
▼ He’s even designed the storefront already.
2. A key to the city, plus a key to the homes of everyone who lives within 20 miles (32.2 kilometers) of Conan Town.
- The hairstyle on Hokuei’s commemorative Detective Conan statue changed to “something just a little more flattering,” or, specifically, O’Brien’s distinctive 'do.
“Do all that, plus three trillion yen you owe me, and I’m on my way!” shouts O’Brien as his video closes, and now Hokuei Mayor Akio Matsumoto has issued a video statement of his own, addressing American Conan in English.
Matsumoto informs O’Brien that Japan doesn’t have a custom of giving keys to the city. The equivalent gesture of success is to award someone with the status of “mayor for a day,” along with a sash announcing their temporary title. “With this you can make all your demands come true. If you come, I will give you this!” Matsumoto promises.
But if O’Brien is upping the ante, so too is Matsumoto, who says he has three demands of his own, saying:
“First, I want my face next to President Lincoln on Mount Rushmore.
Second, I want my own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Third, I want you to bring 15,000 American hamburgers with you when you come (That’s one for each resident of Conan Town).
Be here or be square.”
Obviously, O’Brien lacks the political power to add someone’s face to Mount Rushmore, and he probably doesn’t have the necessary entertainment industry clout to get Matsumoto a star on the Walk of Fame either. And of course, given O’Brien’s farcically huge financial demand, and Matsumoto’s equally over-the-top requests, it’s clear that both sides are going for comedy first, and serious negotiation second.
But procuring 15,000 hamburgers, then personally delivering them to a sleepy town in rural Tottori Prefecture seems like not only a a doable task for O’Brien, but exactly the sort of comedy he does best. So we look forward to his eminent and beefy arrival.
Source: YouTube/Team Coco
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