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Ultra-surprise: TV hero Ultraman graces caps of topical pain relief med in Japan

The "Anmerutsu" anti-inflammatory analgesic with Ultraman Taro's face attached to the cap is seen in this image. (c) Tsuburaya Productions Co.

Kobayashi Pharmaceutical Co., headquartered in the city of Osaka, is launching new designs of its "Anmerutsu" topical anti-inflammatory analgesic products featuring heroes from the TV series "Ultraman" on June 23 to mark the character and medicine's 55th anniversaries -- a move that has turned heads on Twitter.

    A limited number of Anmerutsu products featuring a white bottle and the face of one of four Ultraman series characters on a special cap will be available at drugstores and other outlets across Japan. Both Anmerutsu and Ultraman made their debut in 1966.

    The special package of the "Anmerutsu Gold EX" (c) Tsuburaya Productions Co.

    "As new normal workstyles, such as working from home, have been recommended recently, stiff shoulder troubles have become prominent," the pharmaceutical firm commented on its website. "By collaborating with 'Ultraman,' we aim to have those who suffer painful stiff shoulders to become more familiar with our products, and to expand the brand as we mark our 55th anniversary."

    "Anmerutsu Gold EX," priced at 1,600 yen (about $14.50) excluding tax, and "Anmerutsu Gold EX NEO," priced at 1,900 yen (about $17) excluding tax, will each come in four designs. The face of either Ultraman (1966), Ultraseven (1967), Ultraman Taro (1973) or Ultraman Tiga (1996) will feature on the medicine's cap. Consumers will not know which character it is until they buy and open the box.

    A cap of "Anmerutsu" with Ultraman's face is attached is seen in this image. (c) Tsuburaya Productions Co.

    The reaction on Twitter included a comment on the rather unusual bottle designs, with one user tweeting, "That's a shock." The question, "How did this come about?" was also tweeted.

    (Japanese original by Digital News Center)

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