Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Conan travels to Japan's Conan Town, thus fulfilling his destiny

Earlier this year, Conan O’Brien was made aware that both Detective Conan, a popular cartoon character, and Conan Town, a Japanese town renamed in the bespectacled crime-fighter’s honor, exist. Naturally concluding that the entire cultural phenomenon was based on him, he asked the nation of Japan to pay him 3 trillion yen in compensation. Surprisingly, the mayor of Conan Town said O’Brien could collect his payment if he came in person. O’Brien responded with more demands, like a key to the city (and every home “in a 20 mile radius”), a coin laundry renamed to represent him, and different, redder hair for the town’s mascot.


Now, as part of the late night talk show’s visit to Japan, O’Brien has traveled to Conan Town to see if his conditions have been met. The clip sees further wrinkles added to the deal immediately: Before O’Brien has even landed, Conan Town’s Mayor Matsumoto adds a new condition of his own, requesting “15,000 American hamburgers” be brought to seal the transaction.

When “The American Conan” finally arrives (slightly delayed after going to the wrong airport and having to take a taxi caravan to the right destination) he’s greeted by a crowd of fans and meets a bowtied man who offers a never-ending handshake before getting down to business.

While things don’t work out exactly as planned, Matsumoto does give O’Brien a giant (fake) novelty check for 3 trillion yen and appoints the talk show host “Mayor For The Day” (a gift O’Brien returns by giving Matsumoto a Miss Iowa sash and a ginger wig that allows him to become “Conan For The Day”). Most importantly, the 15,000 hamburgers are given out to the people of Conan Town, only they’re supplied by an Australian rather than an American vendor.

The coin laundry’s name and the town’s statue of Detective Conan remains untouched, its hair refusing to turn into an orange pompadour, but we imagine it’s only a matter of time before these last details are tended to. If O’Brien’s trip to Conan Town is anything to go by, he hasn’t forgotten any aspect of this very important international agreement.

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Contributor, The A.V. Club. Reid's a writer and editor who has appeared at GQ, Playboy, and Paste. He also co-created and writes for videogame sites Bullet Points Monthly and Digital Love Child.