Sunday, February 2, 2014

Review: Mini Squishable Kappa

Kappa at the Mobot Japanese Garden

When Squishable announced the arrival of the Mini Squishable Kappa for sale, I just had to get one. I love anything kappa-related. So, I bought myself this little guy. In case you’re wondering, that photo was taken while visiting the Japanese garden section of Mobot. The bridge leads to the tea island that is only open during the Japanese festival to hold tea ceremonies for visitors.

So, some of you may be wondering what a kappa is. Well, they’re a Japanese “mythical” creature that’s often referred to in English as a “river imp” or a “water sprite”. Depending on who is telling the story, these little guys can be a creature you don’t want to mess with, or adorable little pranksters. Overall, though, they’re generally portrayed as loving sumo and cucumbers no matter what their disposition.

(Yep, that below is photoshopped. No way I’d leave him out in the lily pads. This photo is from the Shaw Arboritum.)

Kappa Pond

See the blue on top? That’s a water plate. Kappa get their power from keeping that moist. If it dries out, then they’re in trouble. For those who believe that kappa are dangerous, they may bow to them to weaken them. Popular folklore states that kappa are very polite and will always return a bow. The theory goes that they will bow in return and lose the water in their plate, and then be subject to the human. This also goes for during sumo. Cucumbers are a more peaceful approach. To prevent any harm, people would carve names on cucumbers and leave them in the river for the kappa. At least, that’s the history lesson that I was taught.

Naturally, I decided to name my kappa “Kyūri” (キュウリ), which means “cucumber” in Japanese. It was the first thing that I thought of. So, I just went with it.

Kyū-chan came in a rather small box. At first, I thought maybe Squishable had sent the mini squishies that I ordered separately. When I opened the box, though, I found both of them squished inside. After a bit of fluffing, they were fine. Also, each was sealed in a plastic bag as an added safety precaution to keep them from getting dirty during shipping.

Arrival of Squishables

The first thing he did was try to hide my fireplace remote from me. Look at that little smirk. I know what you’re up to, mister! Gimme that! You’re a kappa. You don’t like heat, remember?

Kappa Prankster

He came with a Project Open Squish tag, meaning he was a Squishable designed by an artist and won the voting for the round of squishes he was in. So glad he did! The tag below shows the original art. Since it’s a limited-edition Squishable, each comes with a numbered tag. Mine was 133/1000. There’s also a tush tag that’s about the length of my finger.

Mini Squishable Kappa Tags

I’m pretty impressed with the quality. His eyes and nostrils are nicely embroidered. The length of his main body fur makes it a little tricky to keep out of his eyes, though, and to show the definition of the shell’s pattern on his back. Everywhere else, the length of the fur is shorter.

Mini Squishable Kappa Face

Below is a close-up of the long body fur. It’s parted to show the fabric underneath. You won’t see this, unless you carefully part it. Normally, he’s just a fluffy little critter.

Mini Squishable Kappa Fur

I love his little webbed feet! Well-done with no loose strings or problems, just like the rest of him. I’ve inspected him closely and found no issues.

Mini Squishable Kappa Webbed Feet

He’s even got a chubby little tail. See what I mean about the length of the fur preventing the shell pattern from coming through as well as it could?

Mini Squishable Kappa

The only thing I kind of wish had been done with this Squishable is to have kept the body a lighter green than the shell. I think it looked nicer in the concept art. Still, he’s a cutie!

Right now, there’s still a few of the Mini Squishable Kappas left. While I’m writing this (2/2/2014), there’s 25 left. Since they’re limited edition, if you want one, I wouldn’t wait.

P.S. I’m trying to get an Open Squish design of my own made! Please check out my Squishable Mushroom design, and vote for him to be made into a plushie! Tell your friends and family to vote, too, and soon! There’s less than a week left before this voting round is over! Click here to vote!

Vote for the Squishable Mushroom!



FTC Statement: The Mini Squishable Kappa was bought by me. No affiliate links have been used, and no form of compensation has been received for this post. Affiliate links are present in my sidebars. This has not affected the opinions within the review, and complies with FTC standards.

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