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Defictionalization / Anime & Manga

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Individual examples:

  • The Sakuma Drop candy in Grave of the Fireflies, which was Setsuko's favorite snack, actually existed in real life before the anime was made. An exact replica can from the anime was released in 1988 and reprinted in 2008. That said, it's outright jarring to see Setsuko printed on the can, considering how it was used in the end.
  • Kujibiki♡Unbalance was originally a fictional manga/anime within Genshiken that the main characters were obsessed with. When Genshiken's anime adaptation was released on DVD, three episodes of Kujibiki Unbalance were included as OVAs (which are meant to be the first episode, a Clip Show, and the second-to-last episode of the fictional anime), and later on it was remade into a real TV anime that follows a different continuity than the OVAs. When the characters within the original watched the real series the changes were incorporated back into the show! Later on, when the retooled Kujiun anime got a manga adaptation, it included a bonus omake chapter of Genshiken where they discussed the retooled Kujiun series becoming a manga and the changes made to it, including a Lampshade Hanging ("Who the hell is Kio Shimoku?").
  • Puni Puni☆Poemi began as a Show Within a Show on Excel♡Saga. Before that, it was an in-joke among the production staff.
  • Getsumen to Heiki Mina, another Show Within a Show (this one on Densha Otoko) was made into its own show as well.
  • Macross has this in spades, usually related to the various Idol Singers of the franchise:
    • The fictional band Fire Bomber from Macross 7 has released over a dozen albums.
    • Sharon Apple of Macross Plus is basically an ahead-of-her-time Vocaloid. See Virtual Celebrity for just how far this has gone.
    • Sheryl Nome and Ranka Lee's microphones from Macross Frontier are available products, and not only can they play their respective singer's songs, but they also have duet functionality with each other.
    • The fictional girl group Walküre from Macross Delta is now a legit group, with Minori Suzuki and JUNNA as its lead singers (but not as their characters though but themselves), with Kiyono Yasuno, Nozomi Nishida and Nao Tōyama (Kaname, Makina and Reina respectively) also part of the group.
  • It's been insinuated for a while that a "real" version of the Show Within a Show Gekiganger 3 from Martian Successor Nadesico would be produced. It got a half-hour anime movie, but we're still waiting for the series. Show Within a Show within a Show within a Show... The recap episode, by the end, is Nadesico watching Gekigangar watching Nadesico watching Gekigangar.
  • In 1995, Studio Ghibli released a movie, Whisper of the Heart about a girl struggling to write a fantasy novel. The movie included short vignettes from various scenes she was struggling with. Sure enough, due to popular demand the book-within-the-movie got its own movie in 2002, titled The Cat Returns. (Though the plot of The Cat Returns is actually quite different from what was hinted at in Whisper of the Heart. The only big thing that remains the same is the Baron.)
    • Which is interesting as, during the period when Ghibli films (specifically Miyazaki) were a big thing, The Cat Returns was constantly shown as a trailer with other Disney/Ghibli films, while Heart or its connection is never mentioned at all.
  • Minami-ke have Chiaki's stuffed bear Fujioka involved in many gags. Good Smile Company eventually made a real life version of that teddy bear.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters Trading Card Game:
    • Back when the manga revolved around The Other Yugi punishing evildoers with deadly games, Seto Kaiba was just another one-off villain. The "Magic & Wizards" card game was introduced for that one story, with Kaiba resorting to dirty tricks in order to steal Sugoroku's rare Blue-Eyes White Dragon card; when Yugi calls him on it and Kaiba refuses to return the card, things get ugly and The Other Yugi challenges Kaiba to a Shadow Game version of Magic & Wizards. Of course, Kaiba and the M&W card game became popular enough to make a comeback later on, and eventually they not only took over the entire premise, but also spawned a merchandising powerhouse.
    • They also tried that with Dungeon Dice Monsters, but with much less success. Probably 'cause of the limited selection of monsters and the hassle of finding another player of the game. The Gameboy Advance version sold a bit better.
    • Bandai Hobby released a replica of the Millennium Puzzle as part of the Ultimagear line, allowing fans to have a crack at the puzzle itself. Just like the source material, there's no instructions on how it comes together. The instructions packed in is just the assembly guide for each individual piece of the puzzle, due to its model kit nature.
    • At one point, there were real-life Duel Disks based on the ones from the anime and manga. Unfortunately, these were rife with a bevy of problems, apart from the lack of holographic imagry. The slots that held the cards were too small for sleeves, meaning bending or ripping the cards would have been inevitable. There was also the fact that they didn't give you a good view of each other's fields, meaning your opponent could try to pull a fast one on you. There's also the fact that their size and weight meant you'd have insane wrist cramps afterwards. Ultimately, they were discontinued.
  • The "City with No People" book series in CLAMP's manga Chobits had the first two books published in a set, complete with a read-along CD by Chi's voice actress.
  • LainOS. Exactly What It Says on the Tin: an OS meant to recreate the Extreme Graphical Representation of the computers from Serial Experiments Lain.
  • Does anyone want to own Bardiche, Schwertkreuz, or Mach Calibre from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha? Unfortunately, they only come in pendant form. If you want their Robo Speaking, steam releasing weapon form, you're gonna have to make them yourself.
  • ×××HOLiC invokes the trope In-Universe. There is an early chapter where Yuuko is showing Watanuki around her shop's storeroom. On one shelf is the Clow Wand from Cardcaptor Sakura, but then Yuuko reveals it to be just a mass-market light-and-noise-making toy replica.
  • Anything Pokémon related, usually in reference to the anime. More recently, Ash's Pikachu, Ash & friends' Pokémon sent over Wi-Fi, eggs, etc.
    • The hat Ash constantly wore in the first few seasons of the anime was sold as a real hat after the show took off internationally. This extended to his later hats.
  • Naoki Urasawa made a real issue of the series that Those Two Guys are frequently seen drawing in 20th Century Boys, featuring huge amounts of Stylistic Suck. The iconic song Kenji sings on the street has also been recorded, sung by the manga-ka, no less.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure - A piece of the Impossibly Cool Clothes is now available thanks to a Japanese clothing company; Yoshikage Kira's swank tie with the horned skulls. It's reportedly expensive, so one would be advised against using it for cosplay. It is for sale on Amazon.comnote  for ~$414 USD. Crack is Cheaper indeed.
  • Gundam has a big history of the series getting defictionalized stuff in some of its seasons. These include:
    • Mobile Suit Gundam - A 1/1 scale model of the RX-78-2 Gundam which can move its head around was created to celebrate the series's 30th anniversary. There is also an actual institution that is researching a real-live Psycommu. It even has "New Type" in its name. "Gundam" is also a fairly popular secret Code Name for in-development military projects. The RX-78-2 was replaced with its spiritual and current ultimate successor, the RX-0 Gundam Unicorn, in March of 2017. This was latter topped by the RX-78F00 Gundam and its Gundam Dock at the Gundam Factory Yokohama, which does have moving limbs, and shows how big an actual Gundam would be in real life.
      • In 2020, Bandai defictionalized Gundarium, the Unobtainium used to make the RX-78-2 Gundam and many other mobile suits, for a limited edition model kit of the Gundam. In this case it's an alloy of titanium, aluminum, and yttrium, though unlike its original name "Luna Titanium" it doesn't use any materials from the Moon. It still costs around $2000 USD, though.
    • In Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam, the Mobile Suits of the AEUG descended to Jaburo via a special parachute-like device known as a Ballute. In 2017, scientists created and proclaimed success of a similarly-themed device for spacecraft and seek to make some for space shuttles.
    • Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans - The bracelets made by Atra, the dishes used by Naze and Orga, and Mika's Trademark Favorite Food Mars Palm, are available as official merchandises.
  • One of the available merchandise from Saki is a real life Etopen. Now, you too can have your own plump penguin plushie to hug during Mahjong games.
  • Paranoia Agent: You can actually buy Maromi the Dog stress toys in Japan. Delicious Irony.
  • A blue and white striped bowl went on the market after K-On! ended. It brings some... interesting implications as the bowl was featured as a Panty Discretion Shot.
    • The same thing happened to an audio cassette that the characters "recorded" at the end of the second season.
  • One of the more brain-tickling examples, the Laughing Man from Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex and his trademark smiley symbol, both identified as memes and used to examine the phenomenon within the show, have become memes in real life as well, appearing on sweatshirts, bags, and message boards. And Lazy cosplayers. You'd be surprised how effective a paper mask of the logo over a hooded sweatshirt actually works.
    • And what about the technology? Japanese scientists have created metamaterials that make things invisible by refracting light around the object.
  • In Junjou Romantica, Usagi writes BL novels using his own experiences and fantasies as inspiration. Naturally enough, some of the novels were written for real under the series title Junai Romantica.
  • Lucky Star creator Kagami Yoshimizu's former home in Satte, Saitama, Japan was since reformed into a replica of Konata's house with a few museum exhibits. Look for yourself.
  • Urahara's hat from Bleach. Also Soul Candy.
    • Not to mention any number of zanpakutō, more commonly in their shikai form (as their normal form is a simple katana with a stylized tsuba (handguard); no functionality though (Renji's is frequently sought after)
  • In Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, at the end of the series it is mentioned Zenitsu chronicled his life and that of his friends in a personal memoir book titled Zenitsu-den / The Legend of Zenitsu, with contents of said book implied to be heavily dramatized and biased towards making Zenitsu more heroic than he ever was in reality, also making his friends look less impressive while at it. In an art gallery exhibition called Koyoharu Gotouge Exibition which started its tour in Japan in October, 2021 a partial version of Zenitsu-den was produced for attendees to read in the exhibition, it contained a few full chapters of the book written from Zenitsu’s perspective and a table of contents, with titles for all 25 chapters The Legend of Zenitsu ended up with as Zenitsu finished writing it in his elderly years.The Table of Contents in Zenitsu-den . In his elder years Zenitsu grew wiser and chose to dedicate the last chapter of his book to telling the historical truth of what transpired in his life and of that his friends.
  • Durarara!! has an in-universe example where Walker and Erika have managed to defictionalize Darker than Black protagonist Hei's trademark grappling knives, complete with a miniature generator to mimic his Shock and Awe powers for the purposes of torture. In the real world, fans actually made a 'Dollars' board, complete with password and everything. (It's actually more along the lines of a fan forum, however.)
    • There's also a chatroom that's designed exactly like Durarara's chat. Unsurprisingly, a majority of the users use it to RP sex, yaoi, yuri to a far lesser extent, and to rp anime, and to rp anime-like scenarios including DRRR itself.
    • Arguably the internet group Anonymous could be seen as a real life counterpart to the Dollars.
  • The State Alchemist pocket watch from Fullmetal Alchemist.
  • In the "Mother's Rosario" arc of Sword Art Online, Kirito invents a "Bi-directional Probe" to give Yuuki, an Alfheim Online player confined to a hospital due to AIDS, a chance to experience life in the real world. Similar technology has been invented since that gives ill people a chance to experience life beyond the confines of their sterile environments, with one of the most prominent examples being for Ironmouse, a chronically-ill and physically-disabled Virtual Youtuber, who was able to attend an anime convention with her friend CDawgVA, via a specially-constructed remote-controlled drone.
  • Space Travelers: The Animation note  was produced as a spinoff for a live action caper comedy also called Space Travelers. The gimmick was that it was the Show Within a Show that inspired one of the main characters of the live action film, a wannabe bank robber, to talk his partners in crime, and the hostages in the bank who quickly suffered Stockholm Syndrome, to adopt the personas of the show's characters while negotiating with the cops, so everyone starts to Become Their Mask while planning to escape. Media Blasters licenced the anime movie, but without the tie-in to the live-action movie, or any reference to it, all they had was a Sci-Fi Cliché Storm and a cast of awesome names.
  • In MÄR, the characters use magic powers through the use of accessories called ARMs. These same ARMs were then sold as part of the MAR Heaven Card Game in real life, although presumably sans magic powers.
  • The protagonist of Sakende Yaruze! is a voice actor for an anime called "Diet Girl Miyuki." Afterwards the mangaka turned Diet Girl Miyuki/Miracle Dieter Miyuki into its own manga.
  • There are currently people trying to build gliders like those in Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind.
  • ''The World'' from .hack.
  • For a time, the picture book The Nameless Monster by Emil Sebe from Monster was available... only in Japan though.
  • Siscalypse, the Game Within a Show from Oreimo, is seeing a Real Life version, albeit 2D rather than 3D as it was in the original.
    • In one episode, we see Kirino's Stardust Witch Meruru figure collection, which contains a Meruru Nendoroid. This was made into an actual Nendoroid.
  • Somebody in Japan actually built Kaneda's bike from AKIRA.
  • Satsuki and Mei's house from My Neighbor Totoro.
  • Inverted in Wandering Son. A previous manga by the mangaka was made into a play created by the protagonist.
  • Pokémon: The Series: The Ancient Mew Card seen in Pokémon the Movie 2000: The Power of One was made into a real card given out at cinemas showing the film in the U.S. with every ticket sale.
  • Hell GirlThe "real" Hell Correspondence website. By the way, it doesn't work. If you watch the show, you should know that the process goes like: 1) Enter Target Name. 2) Click 'Submit'. 3) Ai Enma appears to give you the black straw doll with red string. 4) You pull the string. 5) Target goes to Hell. The site only goes until Step 2, so there's no black straw doll, so you can't send your target to Hell. So you need not fear having a certain black mark put on your neck setting you on the path to hell.
  • Otter's 11, a rival manga in Baku Man had a single chapter published in an issue of Shonen Jump, credited to Kazuya Hiramaru, the in-universe author.
  • Straight from Dragon Ball, Brother's AiRScouter brings Frieza's military technology right into your home, or specifically onto one eye. Sadly, it doesn't read Power Levels, but the name and aesthetics are a clear Shout-Out. It's mainly designed for industrial use, allowing hands-free instruction and correspondence. Which retroactively explains why the cold-blooded tyrannical aliens were using such a silly-looking headpiece in the first place.
  • Yo-kai Watch:
    • You can buy your very own Yo-kai Watch, along with some Yo-kai Medals, as well as the Great Yokai Dictionary and the Yo-Kai Pad.
    • In the anime, Jibanyan mentions that he loves an idol group named Next Harmeowny, which later became a real group... but in Japan only, where its real name is NyAKB48.
    • Also, the chocolate bars that Jibanyan eats were made into an official product. Bandai creates new flavors of the snack every few months, such as milk and strawberry.
  • Crayon Shin-chan's favorite snack food, Chocobi, later became a real product also made by Bandai to tie in with the franchise. Complete with commericals, like this one!
  • This trope was pretty much invoked when Suzy's Zoo: Daisuki! Witzy plush toys started appearing, since Boof, Lulla, Patches and Ellie Funt are plushies to begin with.
  • The colored pencils Kokoro uses in Kamisama Minarai: Himitsu no Cocotama were made into a real set of colored pencils.
    • The follow-up series, ''Kirakira Happy! Open! Cocotama!" has an actual toy of the key used by Haruka.
  • There's a real life Prism Stone shop in Harajuku just like the ones seen in the Pretty Series It sells clothes based on the ones the characters in both series wear, as well as character merchandise. You can also play Pretty Rhythm, PriPara and Kiratto PriChan there.
    • They also made items based on items shown in the anime versions of the Pretty Series:
      • Pretty Rhythm only had five items, which were the Batopons from Aurora Dream, the Smart Pods the girls use in Dear My Future and Rainbow Live and the headphones and guitar used in the Rainbow Live series.
      • PriPara has many items from the show that were fictionalized, which include the file bags the girls carry their PriTickets in, the PriPass cellphones that initiate Cyalume Change, the microphones the idols use note  the Cyalume Charm, the Miracle Pact, Aroma's spellbook, Mirei's penalty tickets, the student handbook from Paparika Academy, the closet trunks, the Rosette Pact, the Cyalume Tact, the Idol Time Mic, the Idol Watch, the Idol Harp, Takki, Falulu's Non and the doll Hibiki uses to avoid embarrassing situations.
      • For Kiratto PriChan, Prism Stone Harajuku opened up a PriChan studio for fans to record videos up to 30-minutes long that will play on loop throughout the store. They also made the PriChan Casts, Yattemita Appli, Jewel Pact and Design Palette into real toys.
    • A fan of the show created a recipe for the bean-sprout sandwich Mirei ate in episode 15 of PriPara.
    • The umeboshi pizza was served at an Animate cafe to promote season 3 of the show.
  • Bushiroad produced, as prizes for Cardfight!! Vanguard tournaments in Japan, deck holder boxes designed after the ones used in the anime (which are open at the top instead of being fully closed as usual deck holders are) and replicas of the gaming mat seen in the anime (Ultrapro made something similar for western countries, but it's larger, it's missing the slots for deck, discard pile and damage zone, and it's available only with the Vanguard circle in red while the Japanese release comes both in red circle and blue circle variants).
  • The titular Giant Robot from Mazinger Z was made out of a metal called Japanium. Years later, there's now an element speculated to be a metal known as Nihonium (Nihon being the Japanese name for Japan).
  • Psycho-Pass: The PSB jackets which also includes Shinya's winter jacket, Yayoi's coat and Ginoza's glasses are part of the show's merchandises.
  • Yuri!!! on Ice: Among the many, many merchandise options for the show, you can buy Yuri's Makkachin tissue box.
    • Not tangible, but History Maker (the theme song for the show) was played at the opening ceremony of the 2017 Grand Prix Final.
  • Following the success of Keijo!!!!!!!!, groups have popped up in Portugal and Poland that mimic the titular sport.
  • There's a charity group called Akatsuki Afkar in Indonesia, which members do charity work wearing Akatsuki gear.
    • At Spirit Halloween stores, you can buy various replicas of items that appeared in the Naruto series, including Obito/ANBU masks, shinobi headbands, Akatsuki/Hokage cloaks, Naruto's jacket and even Zabuza's sword.
  • Star★Twinkle Pretty Cure:
  • In Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, the title character travels on a single-engine flying wing jet called the Mehve. In 2006, a real-life version of this aircraft was built and successfully flown.
  • Some of the clothes worn in Aikatsu! were available for purchase in real life at Aikatsu Style shops.
  • Over 4500 of Doraemon's gadgets have been defictionalized by scientists! Don't believe it? Here's proof.
  • Hunter × Hunter: Want to test your skills playing Gungi but you missed out buying the ones released with the limited edition Japanese blu-ray set years ago? There's now an official Gungi game set finally available for sale to the public, with actual rules implemented, with beginner, intermediate and expert levels to choose from.

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