Instant ramen providing instant smiles from adorably weird designs.

Back at the start of the summer, instant ramen maker Nissin announced a change in the packaging design for it best-selling Cup Noodle line which made people happy for two reasons. First, by replacing an adhesive plastic seal with a pair of foldable paper tabs to keep the lid closed during cooking, the company was able to move towards a more environmentally friendly container. Second, the tabs now make the Cup Noodle lid look kind of like a kitty.

▼ The new Cup Noodle lid design

It wasn’t just feline fans who saw the resemblance, either, as Nissin itself prints illustrated cat faces on the underside of random lids, with the cute critters’ mouths watering at the thought of the delicious meal to come.

Now Nissin is adding a second ramen-loving animal friend to the lineup, as some Cup Noodle packages now have a Tibetan sand fox waiting to say hello once you peel back the lid. But instead of an adorable smile…

…the fox greets you with a cool stare, yet one that still communicates “Hey, dude, can I have a bite?”

While the rendering might seem lacking in the sugary cuteness that’s come to be expected in Japanese illustrations, the Tibetan sand fox really does have a quietly judgmental expression, and several responses to Nissin’s tweet included this image of the animal that enjoyed some time in the spotlight after appearing in a commercial for beverage maker Calpis a few years ago.

▼ The resemblance is pretty remarkable.

Other reactions have included:

“I was all excited about seeing the cat, and then when I saw this guy I busted up laughing.”
“With the fox’s expressions, when the steam rises up to the underside of the lid it looks like it’s sweating like crazy.”
“He looks like Golgo 13.”
“I love silly stuff like this. I hope they do like Koala no March and make a whole bunch of different designs.”

With the changeover to the new tabbed lids only starting recently, many stores’ stock is still made up of the old packages, and even among the new ones, not every lid has an animal friend on it. Nissin says that your chances of encountering the Tibetan sand fox Cup Noodle is six percent, so it’s not a sure thing, but if you need a dose of laughter, make sure to peek under the lid and see if anyone is looking back.

Source: Twitter/@cupnoodle_jp via IT Media
Featured image: Twitter/@cupnoodle_jp
Insert images: Nissin, PR Times
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