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As Halloween becomes increasingly popular in Japan, people are finding more and more opportunities to show off their costumes. A few years ago your only chance to dress up would be a private party with some friends, but now there are parades and even neighborhoods with trick-or-treating for kids (sadly almost always in the afternoon, but it’s a start).

Last year, our sister site Pouch experimented with the idea of Halloween costumes in the workplace, giving the team a boost in solidarity and energy. Could they repeat that success this year?

In the past 12 months, the number of lovely ladies on staff at Pouch has gone up, and if there’s one thing Japanese society can be counted on, it’s encouraging young women to dress up in fun costumes. But given the laid-back environment at both Pouch and RocketNews24, no one was going to hand down an order forcing the writing and editing team to get into the Halloween spirit. The duty of rallying the troops fell to Rinko, Pouch’s resident cosplay instigator.

Last year Rinko dressed up as Snow White. This year, instead of a fairytale princess, she opted for fast food royalty by copying the bright red hair and braids of burger icon Wendy. Perhaps thinking that it’s time Wendy got more lucrative employment than working the drive-through window, Rinko slipped into a mini-skirted nurse’s uniform, splattered with blood for that extra Halloween appeal.

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With her outfit all set, Rinko stepped out the door. It’s only a seven minute walk from her apartment to the office in Shinjuku, which is a ridiculously short commute in a town where most people spend a solid hour getting to work. Unfortunately, Shinjuku is also a respectable business district, and the hordes of earnest businessmen who passed by her on the street stared coldly at her, their eyes seeming to say “Who cares if it’s Halloween? If you’re going to work, put on a suit, ya ditz!”

Embarrassed as she was, Rinko put on a brave face and soldiered on until she reached the sanctuary of the Pouch office. Waiting for her was fellow editor Usa-chan. Unfortunately, Usa-chan was dressed in normal, decidedly non-Halloween clothes. After staring at Rinko’s mishmash of a costume for a moment, she deadpanned, “Who are you supposed to be?”

Crestfallen, Rinko sat down at her desk and got to work. But just when she’d given up hope, Usa-chan called over to her.

“How do I look?” she asked.

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While Rinko had been staring at her PC, Usa-chan had transformed into her Little Red Riding Hood!

Touched by the sudden show of camaraderie, Rinko watched as the rest of the team arrived one by one, each in costume.

▼ Who could this be?

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▼ How does he ties his shoes without cutting up the laces?

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Alice in Wonderland’s White Rabbit makes an appearance.

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▼ It looks like she even brought candy!

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▼ Oh, wait. She brought incredibly spicy Habanero chilies, and Bhut Jolokia ghost peppers, which are so hot they can be used as weapons. So…trick or trick?

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Next up was a trio of related costumes, the cat burgling sisters from the anime classic Cat’s Eye.

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▼ Big sister Rui!

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▼ Middle sister (?) Hitomi!

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▼ And Usa-chan (when did she change?) as little sister Ai!

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Spoiler alert: Cat’s Eye does not end with the three sisters giving up a life of crime in order to become writers in downtown Tokyo.

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▼ Careful there, Wendy.

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▼ Just a little off the top.

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▼ Remember kids, picking you nose will make it bleed, especially if you have bladed fingertips.

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Eventually picture time was over and it was time to get back to work. Still, Project Office Halloween Cosplay 2013 was a big success, and we’re already looking forward to what Rinko and the gang have planned for next year.

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▼ Happy Halloween!

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Photos: RocketNews24
Cat’s Eye Image: Amazon Japan

[ Read in Japanese ]