LiLiCo – the Japanese-Swedish Celebrity

LiLiCo is an interesting Japanese television personality to me. I really like her!  And I decided to post about her here, but…


LiLiCo – spiced up ala Caméron!

Trying to find the little commercials and songs she’s done is like trying to get to the root of an unsolved mystery. You see, I can find the names of media she’s appeared in, but I can’t find the actual YouTube videos or IMDB articles about the TV spots or films that brought her to stardom…  This is bad for me because I really wanted to showcase what she has done!  Could it just be that people in Japan don’t document their pop media as relentlessly as we do in the West (“Put it on Youtube!”  “Get it on Reddit!”  “Like it on Facebook!”)??

It seems a lot of Japanese TV personalities are either comedians or former sports stars or musicians…  Then there’s the odd lawyer or two who’s made it big (i.e. Motomura Kentaro). But then there’s LiLiCo, who appears fairly often and all over the place…  She’s accepted within the Talent community, and has got a great personality that’s suited for TV.  …but I can’t find the media she did to make it big in Japan.  Please help me in my quest because I like LiLiCo and I want to know her better!  Send me links if you have any!

In the meantime, let’s start with what I could find!  (The following is largely taken from her page on Japanese Wiki)

LiLiCo is a Japanese-Swedish Celebrity, born to a Swedish father, and half Japanese mother.  Born and raised in Stockholm, LiLiCo didn’t know Japanese as a child, but liked to look at the pictures in Japanese idol magazines she received from her mother in Japan.  When she was 18 she went Japan and worked at a lunchbox shop in Katsushika, Tokyo, the home of her mother’s family.

OK.  Humble beginnings.  Gotcha.  Here’s where things start to get a bit fuzzy…

Aspiring to become a singer, she debuted in 1992, singing the theme for a film, and starring in a series of Toyota commercials (ネッツトヨタ)…  HOWEVER, I can’t find ANY of these alleged commercials on YouTube.

The name of the song for the film is (maybe??), 「過ぎてしまえば」(“Sugiteshimaeba,” which is a pretty cool name by the way), but this too is nowhere to be found on YouTube!

I can’t even find the title of the movie it was allegedly for!  It’s like whatever got her known doesn’t exist anymore…. spooky.

After the release of this ghosty film, LiLiCo was asked in a magazine interview to list her top 3 favourite movies.   Upon reading the article, a TBS (Japanese television station) producer approached LiLiCo and asked her if she’d like to audition as a movie commentator.

As of 2001, she began her new job.

She also lends her voice to the characters of the Japanese dub of South Park!  (Cartman, apparently O_O)

To be honest, I had never heard of a ‘movie commentator’ before, but she does it well from what I’ve seen.  It’s just spooky that the history of her national debut doesn’t seem to exist on the Internet (but if anyone knows of anything, please pass on the links – I am interested)!  It just feels to me that she kinda phantasmically faded into the picture.

In any case, LiLiCo is enthusiastic, bright and has perfect Japanese (with only a hint of a foreign accent as far as I can tell!).  She’s fun to watch on TV, so I totally recommend checking her out if you get the chance! :)

LiLiCo’s Japanese Wiki > > \^-^/

LiLiCo’s talent site > > <(^u^)>

June 17, 2013, editor’s note: This is a really popular post of mine, and upon reading it again I’ve felt like the tone I took was more negative than I had intended.  I really like LiLiCo, so out of respect for her and her fans I have changed the tone of this post to more properly reflect my feelings about her. :)  Thanks, everyone.

29 comments on “LiLiCo – the Japanese-Swedish Celebrity

  1. hey, if you want know more about LiLiCo, I recommend you to watch this video, , LiLiCo was a guest in this Japanese program called 中居正広の金曜日のスマたちへ.It talked about how she became famous and what she suffered in the past 42 years .I was really touching after I watched this video.

  2. hey, if you want know more about LiLiCo, I recommend you to watch this video, , LiLiCo was a guest in this Japanese program called 中居正広の金曜日のスマたちへ.It talked about how she became famous and what she suffered in the past 42 years .I was really touching after I watched this video.

  3. Pingback: Rola, the puffer-fish-faced model | Cameron Ohara - Digging Deep into Japanese Culture

  4. The odd lawyer who’s made it big?! How curious.

    Love how you say she’s ‘accepted within the Talent community’ – funny, that. There’s talent, & there’s charm.

    Love reading how she made it up there, Angry. Your articles are always so interesting. Totally expose me to “another” world :)

    • No kidding, eh? :) I could only find a little bit of her South Park work on YouTube, but from what I heard it was awesome! I didn’t even know that South Park was in Japanese!!

  5. Cool! I always enjoy reading your articles about pop culture. These kind of things are very hard to get to know if you’re not really fluent in Japanese (like me). So thanks for sharing it with us!

    • Thanks for the positive feed back! I’ve been thinking about show casing some Japanese celebrities this year,partly for the reasons you mentioned above.

      Glad to hear it helps someone!

  6. I did not know about this new talent. I don’t find her particularly beautiful (rather she looks typically Euro-Asian), but I see she is talented enough not to stink singing with Suzuki Papaya (鈴木パパイヤ)!

  7. You know, when I see things like this it makes me think I can do the same! After all, my story is similar to Jero’s. Minus the fact my enka game is way below par…and my nihongo is just alright, but no where near where I want to take it

    • Right?? I love that kinda attitude! Everyone of us have potential! But only a few of us try to do something with it, I feel.

      Keep on rockin’ (eve if it’s not Enka :P)! And thanks for the comment, eh? :)


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