Kirby of the Stars: Guest Character Contest
Kirby of the Stars: Guest Character Contest (「星のカービィ」ゲストキャラクターコンテスト)[Japanese title] was a Japan-only character design contest for Kirby: Right Back at Ya!. This contest encouraged viewers to design new guest characters that they wanted to see in future episodes of the show. The winning entry would be featured as a guest character in the episode Scare Tactics - Part II.
The CBC website for the show provided instructions to the viewers on how to submit their guest character to the contest via a standard postcard. The viewer would send in their drawing, alongside with the following information about themselves on the front of the postcard:
- Phone number.
After filling the postcard with sufficient information, the viewer would mail it to postal code 〒460-8405, with recipient name "ＣＢＣテレビ 「星のカービィ・ゲストキャラクターコンテスト」" ("CBC Television, c/o 'Kirby of the Stars: Guest Character Contest'"). (Note that contest entry postcards often do not require the sender to write the full destination address in Japan.)
The winners were announced through the "Pupupu Tsushin" segment corresponding to the original Japanese broadcast of Sheepwrecked, while the overall winner was announced via the corresponding "Pupupu Tsushin" segment for the original Japanese airing of War of the Woods, as well as on the CBC website.
The overall winning entry was a ghost-like, bubble-breathing creature named Shaabon (シャーボン, Shābon), which was designed by Tsubasa Osada (長田つばさ) of Kyoto prefecture. Said winner eventually was featured in Scare Tactics - Part II as a monster with a very small role, that being to scare off King Dedede by blowing bubbles at him.
Notably, the original drawing also conceptualized the possibility of a "Bubble" ability for Kirby that could be gained from this monster, but this never came to pass, however a similar ability would later debut in Kirby: Squeak Squad.
Shaabon as seen in Scare Tactics - Part II
Shaabon demonstrates its bubble-blowing abilities to scare King Dedede.
Other winners and contest entries
The Pupupu Tsushin segment corresponding to the Japanese version of Sheepwrecked, alongside the CBC website announcement, showed the winning entries of each magazine participating in the contest. The artworks were showcased on the CBC website's art gallery section, the "Pupupu Museum of Arts" (プププ美術館). Each artwork has the contestant's names and corresponding grand prizes listed on each.
|List of winners in Kirby of the Stars: Guest Character Contest
|Kohei Tanaka (田中航平), Yamaguchi prefecture
|Mebae Grand Prize
|A monster that resembles a large, heavy gray elephant, depicting with a somewhat trapezoidal body, large ears and a medium-sized trunk.
|It should not be confused for Phan Phan, which is an official elephant-like monster that made its debut many episodes later.
|Junko Toyooka (豊岡潤子), Hokkaido prefecture
|Youchien Grand Prize
|A group of three characters that resemble the hand gestures used in a game of rock-paper-scissors.
|グー・チョキ・パー (guu / choki / paa, also written in hiragana as ぐうちょきぱあ) denote rock, scissors, and paper in the context of rock-paper-scissors, despite the Japanese name for the game being じゃんけん (jyanken).
|Keito Nakanishi (中西慶磨), Mie prefecture
|Yakushuu Youchien Grand Prize
|Suikani is a crab-like monster featuring orange appendages and eyes as well as a body resembling a watermelon slice. This monster initially disguises itself as a regular watermelon, originally intended to be used for a summer game of suikawari (スイカ割り, watermelon splitting). If attempted to be split in this disguise, it is not left with a single crack, but it attempts to run away quickly.
|Suikani's name is a Japanese wordplay - スイカ (suika) means "watermelon", while カニ (kani) means "crab".
Suikawari is a traditional Japanese game played during the summertime that involves a blindfolded player attempting to split a watermelon in half using a stick.
|Aya Ozawa (大澤綾), Shizuoka prefecture
|Televi-Kun Grand Prize
|Happy Prince is a round-shaped character with blue striped limbs and yellow-colored hands and feet. He also wears a golden crown adorned with blue and red gems. The description on the drawing describes Happy Prince as being a rival of Kirby's, and has a personality described to be boastful and lively.
|Satoshi Machida (まちださとし), Hiroshima prefecture
|Shougaku 2nd Grade Grand Prize
|Dark Kirby is a shadow-colored doppelgänger of Kirby featuring red glowing eyes and mouth. His body resembles a black hole, which can take opponents to "a world of darkness". Dark Kirby also carries a shadowy sword and orb, with the latter being capable of corrupting the opponent's mind, and the former doing the same but only upon slaying the opponent with such.
|Coincidentally, a similar character would later debut in Kirby & The Amazing Mirror: Shadow Kirby. His role as an opponent would later manifest in the Kirby Fighters sub-game in Kirby: Triple Deluxe, and in Kirby Fighters 2.
|Mari Natsui (夏井麻里), Saitama prefecture
|Shougaku 3rd Grade Grand Prize
|A pair of pink cherry-like characters, resembling two Kirbys with yellow feet. According to the description of the drawing, Twin Cherry "always appears singing in the trees".
|Eri Kigure (木暮絵梨), Tochigi prefecture
|Shougaku 4th Grade Grand Prize
|Kirarin is a white "star bird" that features stars adorned on its head and wings, as well as star-shaped feet. According to the description of the drawing, Kirarin was apparently "born in outer space". Additional details in the drawing describe Kirarin as someone Tokkori fell in love with.
|Masashi Kabasawa (樺沢雅司), Shizouka prefecture
|Shougaku 5th Grade Grand Prize
|Ikarinbo is a short-tempered, impatient, pufferfish-like monster that keeps a close eye on the surrounding fish. According to the description on the drawing, touching the top fin on his body would cause him to blow up, and he will also be sent in a fit of rage if the sea surrounding him is polluted.
|The drawing also lists his body length as being 5 meters long.
|Chisato Fujitsuka (藤塚千智), Hyōgo prefecture
|Shougaku 6th Grade Grand Prize
|Blue Potari is a blue teardrop-shaped monster who is described as being very cold to the touch and always appears to be crying. It can transform into Red Potari, an angry red teardrop-shaped monster who is also very hot to the touch.
|ポタリ (Potari ) is a Japanese onomatopoeia referring to dripping water droplets.
|Takuya Yamazoe (山ぞえたくや), Ōsaka prefecture
|CoroCoro Comic Grand Prize
|This character resembles a large beigoma, with arms and feet sticking out from its body. It also wields both a small beigoma and a string used to spin it. It is described as being "one of Kirby's friends", however it also rivals with him in beigoma battles. When losing a beigoma battle, Commander can also transform into a regular beigoma, retracting its arms and feet as it does so, in an attempt to challenge Kirby to a second battle.
|Kosuke Hori (堀耕輔), Aichi prefecture
|CBC Grand Prize
|A large monster that resembles an evil washing machine with green hose-like appendages and purple feet. Initially, it appears as an ally of King Dedede's. It can find opponents and toss them inside its top opening, then attack with a spinning mechanism inside.
|Notably, the drawing describes the size of O-Washing Monster as being 10 meters large.
|The overall winning character of the contest, "Shaabon", is listed in the section above.
As of now, there are currently no surviving imagery regarding the remaining runners-up and other contest entries showcased in their respective magazines, with only the grand prize winners having been documented on the CBC website for the anime.