The irregular at magic high school’s Protagonist Recruits for Japan’s Military
Recruiting young people for military service is a challenge in many countries, and Japan seems to be no exception. The Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF) is turning to anime to help with recruitment. The 2017 recruitment poster of the JSDF‘s Tokyo Provincial Cooperation Office features The irregular at magic high school‘s protagonist Tatsuya Shiba.
The smaller black text along the right side of the poster reads, “Protect this present and the future,” and the larger black text on the left side announces that the JSDF is recruiting.
Some net commenters said they felt that the use of anime for military recruitment is inappropriate. One commenter also said that the appearance of GATE characters on the 2015-2016 recruitment poster was more fitting because the anime actually depicts the JSDF in its main story.
People also criticized a High School Fleet recruitment poster that the JSDF‘s Kanagawa Provincial Cooperation Office produced last year. Some people believed the poster encouraged the involvement of children in the military. The anime depicts high school girls as members of a kind of all-female navy force.
Ibaraki Prefecture’s branch of the JSDF has used moe mascots on recruitment posters in the past. The JSDF‘s Okayama Provincial Cooperation Office has also used female moe characters to aid in recruitment, and it reported a 20% increase in volunteers.