We buy stacks of the new limited-edition sweet souvenir to see if we can snare all six cute Pikachu designs. 

Just last week, we wrote about the upcoming collaboration between Pokémon and the ludicrously popular sweet treat that’s been the go-to souvenir for many travellers to the capital: Tokyo Banana.

Dubbed “Pokémon Tokyo Banana“, this new collection pays homage to Pikachu, with the character appearing on the banana-shaped sponge cakes in six different designs. On sale in TokyoKanagawa, Chiba, and Saitama from 21 November, before a nationwide rollout across the country, we were keen to catch ’em all as soon as they appeared so we headed out to our nearest 7-Eleven to see if we could get lucky.

▼ The Pokémon Tokyo Banana range is exclusive to 7-Eleven stores in Japan.

Despite arriving early in the morning, the first 7-Eleven we visited didn’t have any Pokémon Tokyo Banana anywhere. Asking the staff didn’t prove to be any help to us either, as they didn’t seem to know anything about the new release when we asked them about it.

Little did we know this was going to be a trend that continued as we called upon the next 11 stores, where staff gave us a variety of reasons as to why they didn’t have any in stock, ranging from “we don’t plan to receive them” through to “we’ll be receiving stock tomorrow.” However, since the new product is only being sold in limited quantities, we became more and more anxious as we rushed from store to store, but finally, at the 12th store we visited, we breathed a sigh of relief as we spotted them sitting on quietly on a shelf, as if they’d been waiting for us all along.

▼ So we bought all twelve that were there, priced at 291 yen (US$2.81) each.

With six types available, and two in each pack, customers need to buy at least three packs to have any chance of catching ’em all. With twelve in our bag, we were curious to see how many types we’d caught, and hoped we might have secured ourselves one of the rare types — a heart-shaped tail that resembles the back of a female Pikachu.

▼ We picked up our first bag and opened it up…

▼ And were surprised to find two of the exact same character design!

Would this mean that each pack contained two of the same designs inside? We were yet to find out, but still…how cute are they??!!

As we opened up more packs, we were relived to find that not all of them contained two of the same character designs inside. And after we’d opened eight packs, we already had five of the six designs available.

▼ Left to right: “Prim Pikachu“; “Cheery Pikachu“; “Wink Pikachu“; “Hello Pikachu“; “Goodnight Pikachu“.

The only thing missing from our collection was the “Pikachu Tail“. These are the hardest to get, and the heart tail is even harder to find, with a note on the side of the pack saying “The heart design is extremely lucky!”

We eagerly opened up the remaining four packs, but alas – no tail. We did have this pile at the end of it, however, and it was mighty cute, with mostly winking and cheery Pikachus.

They looked adorable on the outside, but what about the inside? To find out, we picked up one of the cheery Pikachus for an investigative dissection.

▼ All in the name of field research, Pikachu.

▼ We slowly split the Pikachu in two and discovered it was filled with banana custard cream!

The custard filling was sweet and creamy, with a delectable banana flavour that had us drawing comparisons to the bananas in Pokémon Go.

These bananas have a calming effect, helping wild Pokémon settle, and the Pokémon Tokyo Banana had the same soothing effect on us. The banana connection actually makes this even more of an impressive collaboration, and it’s one more people around the country will be able to enjoy as the rollout continues throughout November and December.

From January 2021, a second Pokémon Tokyo Banana range will become available, so we’ll keep chasing that elusive tail and chomping on Pikachu and Chansey doughnuts from Mister Donut until then!

Related: Pokémon Tokyo Banana
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