A shadowy organisation wreathed in mystery and the basis of a thousand and one conspiracy theories, now with collectibles!

The Freemasons, despite their various charitable works and, according to my grandmother, thoroughly enjoyable seaside outings for widows of members, are a name more often voiced in the same breath as the Illuminati or the Knights Templar for theories of behind-the-scenes manipulation. Some conspiracies have even gone so far as to accuse the fraternity of dastardly acts to that end. Perhaps in an attempt to change that image, the organisation has put its name to coffee beans, and now, surprisingly, capsule toys.

The figures, available to purchase from gacha toy capsule vending machines in Japan for 300 yen (US$2.65) from the end of June, are part of a collection of six. The six models are based on traditional Japanese designs and landmarks, and are cast in a suitably sinister matte black plastic.

The Freemason souvenirs have been produced by the capsule toy company, Kitan Club, whose highly collectible and often bizarre models and cat cosplay items we’ve featured in the past. While the Freemason Grand Lodge of Japan has not officially endorsed the designs, they have been approved by the affiliated, but separate, Tohidu Foundation which was founded by a former Grand Master.

▼ The beckoning good luck maneki neko cat

Daruma, a traditional Japanese doll based on Bodhidharma, the founder of Zen

Tanuki, the mischievous raccoon dog

▼ Osho, the King piece in shogi, or Japanese chess.

▼ Mount Fuji, volcano and therefore possibly the site of their secret lair

▼ A model of Tokyo Tower is also available.

▼ All of the models feature the Freemason symbol on the underside.

So, clandestine Freemason members no longer need to identify themselves to each other through secret handshakes, passwords or turkey-based rituals when they meet. They can just flash their fancy new Freemason Kitan Club souvenirs, and now so can you.

Source, images: Kitan Club