18 American Things That Are Popular in Japan

Japan is renowned for its technology, video games, and anime. Have you ever thought about what American export has achieved the same level of popularity in Japan? Somebody asked recently “Anime is insanely Popular in America. What’s an American thing that’s as Popular in Japan?” here are the top 18 answers.

Baseball

Baseball
Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

“At this point, Japan’s probably the number one baseball country.”

“Spent 3 weeks in Japan and went to a baseball game. I think their team was the Giants. Not even sure if it was Japan’s major league or minor league but the place was sold out and it was like being at a concert. The place was going wild. Definitely an experience you don’t get normally in America at a ball game.“

Putting Random English Words on Clothing

Photo Credit: Natasa Adzic / Shutterstock.

“My favorite sighting in Tokyo was a t-shirt saying, “I move to the correct music.”

KFC

Photo Credit: Tupungato / Shutterstock.com.

“KFC is the biggest one but I’ve known Japanese people to obsess over other American fast food places as well. I know one dude from Japan who visits the US roughly twice a year, and the first order of business is always a visit to Taco Bell to catch up on the menu. It’s like a religious experience for him to try something new.”

Jazz

Photo credit: Tsuguliev / Shutterstock.

“Cowboy Bebop (A popular Japanese Anime) introduced me to jazz. I’ve been obsessed with their soundtrack ever since.”

Peanut Butter

Photo Credit: Pixel-Shot / Shutterstock.

“They have peanut butter in Japan, you can find it in almost every grocery store. It’s just stupidly expensive. It’s like four to five times the markup there.”

King of The Hill

King of the Hill
Photo Credit: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation.

“There is a die-hard fanbase for King of the Hill, who also argue about dubs vs. subs.”

7 Eleven

Seven Eleven Japan food shelf
Photo Credit: AlmostViralDesign.

“Their 7/11 food is way better than most American frozen/packaged dinners.”

Disney Movies

Frozen
Photo Credit: Faiz Zaki.

“Yeah, they like cartoons about lightheartedness and the possibility of a better world.”

Halloween

Halloween
Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

“Was going to say this, the whole of October is Halloween over there.”

American Bourbon

American Bourbon
Photo Credit: Dmitry Melnikov.

“The Japanese practically saved the industry during the 80s and 90s.”

50’s Style Greasers

50's Style Greaser
Photo Credit: MAHATHIR MOHD YASIN.

Japanese greasers, known as “Kaminari-zoku,” emerged in the 1950s and 60s, influenced by American rock and roll and rebel culture, and can still be found today in pockets of Tokyo’s underground scene.

Mcdonalds

Photo Credit: .8th.creator / Shutterstock.com

“Also Ronald McDonald is called Donald McDonald in Japan.”

South Park

South Park
Photo Credit: Savvapanf Photo.

“So much that other anime references it. Even Power from Chainsaw Man was inspired by Eric Cartman.”

Columbo

Columbo statue
Photo Credit: cktravels.com.

“Columbo had novelizations of episodes and, I believe original stories, published there. Columbo-inspired characters have appeared in anime and manga (Lupin III had Bolonco in an episode).”

American Music

Taylor Swift
Photo Credit: Tinseltown.

“Yup. When I was there and told people I was from Chicago, the number one thing they would say was ‘ooh Fall Out Boy!’”

Tower Records

Tower Records
Photo Credit: waranon8327.

“Physical media is still huge in Japan. Many Japanese people still buy CDs and DVDs/Blu-Rays. It’s why you often see artists release Japan-exclusive special edition versions of albums that have a few extra tracks.”

Pizza Hut

Pizza Hut
Photo Credit: Ned Snowman.

“I saw so many Pizza Huts there.”

Rock Music

Man Rock music sign
Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

“The old hair bands from the 80s until grunge were extremely popular in Japan, even well past their popularity in the States.”

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