They also seem to have gained transformation powers.

American animation that isn’t either produced by Disney or theatrical-feature is sort of a niche market in Japan, but there’s enough interest for Cartoon Network to have a Japanese division, which broadcasts a lot of the same for-kids series that they do in the U.S.

This month, though, Cartoon Network Japan is debuting a new series that’s made in Japan, featuring a cast of adorable animal characters who look like they could give Hello Kitty and her Sanrio pals a run for their money in the cuteness department. The series stars a cat and a mouse, and their names are Tom and Jerry.

Yes, that Tom and Jerry, as the classic American cartoon duo has been given new, kawaii character design remakes for their first ever made-in-Japan series.

Even the series’ title is getting a more Japanese-looking overhaul. Ordinarily, when Tom and Jerry is written in Japanese, both of their names are written in katakana, the type of Japanese text used to render foreign names and loanwords. For the new, cuter series, though, Tom and Jerry’s names are written in hiragana. Hiragana is usually used for Japanese names and words, but the script is also visually softer and cuter than the more angular katakana.

Tom and Jerry, with their names in katakana (top) and hiragana (bottom)

In terms of tone, it sounds like the hiragana Tom and Jerry won’t be quite as mercilessly violent as their katakana counterparts. The producers describe it as “Adding a topping of kawaii to the speedy, humorous movement of the good-natured fights Tom and Jerry always get into.” They’re also joined by Tuffy (also known by the name Nibbles), and apparently all three of them have the ability to transform into cute things like candies and sweets.

The new drawn-in-Japan Tom and Jerry cartoons aren’t replacing the old ones in Japan, though. The new Tom and Jerry will be a series of animated shorts shown on Cartoon Network’s Japan broadcast, debuting as part of a special block of various Tom and Jerry cartoons on November 11, which is Cheese Day in Japan’s extensive list of quasi-holidays, because November used to be the customary time for making sou, which was the closest thing Japan had to cheese back in the olden times.

Source: PR Times
Top image: PR Times
Insert images: PR Times, SoraNews24
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