Having been excited for several months leading up to the premiere date of Netflix’s Rilakkuma and Kaoru, there definitely came a point when I thought “am I hyping this up too much for myself, what if I expect too much and it doesn’t live up to what I think it will be?”
Nothing is more devastating (in terms of media consumption) than being let down.
Thank goodness those worries went away because as soon as you hear the cutest groan a bear could possibly make, I was instantly in love with Rilakkuma all over again, and in a much more real way. Seeing the delicate placement and movement of everyone on Rilakkuma and Kaoru quickly eases you into relaxation mode.
Who is Rilakkuma?
Without telling any major spoilers, Rilakkuma is a lazy and cute brown bear with a mysterious zipper on his back. A smaller bear, Korilakkuma, has white fur and sports a red button. Kiiroitori is a little yellow bird that belongs to Kaoru, a Japanese office worker. All 4 live together in Kaoru’s vintage styled apartment in Japan.
A little history…
This, for a long time, is all we knew about Rilakkuma. To delve a little deeper, Rilakkuma was created way back in 2003 and started out as a comic/book series. He became so popular that merchandise was created for Rilakkuma and everything just exploded from there!
Rilakkuma literally means “relaxing bear” (relax-kuma, kuma means bear, relaxing bear!) San-x had another wildly popular character in the past, named Tarepanda (droopy panda). The look of this panda exuded exhaustion or the feeling of being worn out, in a time when Asia had been hit with a financial crisis. It seems Rilakkuma, whose knack for relaxation, has also been an ideal friend for nearly everyone whose work, school or social troubles caused them to feel strained and stressed.
We hope that Rilakkuma and Kaoru can be renewed by Netflix to bring more joy to those who need a little relaxing at the end of a difficult day.