Note: This post contains spoilers. For years, Japanese beer companies have had famous pin-up models pose with frosty brews. Publicity posters were tacked up in izakaya (Japanese pub) style restaurants across the country. Those posters still exist (though they are on the wane when compared to a decade ago!) and live on in Resident Evil 6.
In a recent interview with Famitsu, Resident Evil 6 director Eiichiro Sasaki talked about one of the game’s bosses, Deborah.
Deborah is the sister of Resident Evil 6‘s Helena Harper and appears mutated in the game.
According to Sasaki, “At the beginning of development, we said, ‘Deborah’s pose is a beer poster.'” Sasaki went on to explain that they were looking to the bikini pin-up pics that are found on beer posters.
“Part of Deborah’s movements, were consciously created of that,” Sasaki explained, when replying to Famitsu‘s remark about how “sexy” the seemingly nude creature was.
While the character has slimy, pale green skin in the game, she initially had fairly more realistic flesh — which probably made the beer girl inspiration even more evident and the character even more sexualized.
As with the West, Japan has a long history of using females, called “kyan gyal” (“campaign girl”), to sell alcohol. Beer ads before World War II, for example, featured Japanese women in kimono, holding beer bottles.
Above, you can see an Asahi Super Dry beer poster from the year 2000, featuring Haruka Igawa.
That sort of imagery in beer ads was more common a decade ago; these days, more and more beer posters feature women in far more conservative dress. The poses are less provocative, too, as companies are perhaps attempting to appeal to both male and female drinkers.
In the past, these beer posters often featured pin-ups kneeling — a motion that the mutated Deborah seems to mirror.
ファミ通 [Official Site]