Wednesday, October 27, 2010


This venerable Japanese beefstitution is really more Bovine Nation in miniature than business dedicated to the art and science of preparing portions of cows for consumption. Why else would the logo bear this charming portrait of cows from a variety of stations and stages of life? The gentleman, the crêpe-making matron, the pram-pushing mama, the young sow with the parasol, the adorable tykes. It could be a scene from fin de siècle Paris!

The effect of the message is twofold: First, by presenting the entire Family of Cow, the animals in all their humanity, as it were, their status as injured parties is obscured. Their grievances are refuted before they can even be considered.

Second, by showcasing a broad swath of cow society, they further neutralize the animals' objections by making bovicide appear uncontroversial to all of cowkind. In fact, it is such a commonplace that thoughts of fear or horror never entered any of the cows' minds.

Addendum: This is the same strategy we saw employed by Sweetwater's seafood restuarant. "They don't mind," the images say. "None of them mind. Up and down animal civilization, they're all on board. So! Ready to order?"

Addendum 2: We're reminded of this papercraft from Japan. And (scroll down) who's that making a cameo? More cow-related papercraft—from Niku-Mansei! Small world!

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