Black Friday Sale


Irresistible review: A charming look at why we find things cute

Joshua Paul Dale's excellent book makes a great case for studying cuteness, from baby animals to Hello Kitty. But the concept may have a very dark side

By Simon Ings

15 November 2023

TOKYO, JAPAN - JULY 4, 2023: All Nippon Airways B787-9 Pok?mon Jet leaves Hanada Airport. ; Shutterstock ID 2326792475; purchase_order: -; job: -; client: -; other: -

All Nippon Airways now has a Boeing 777-300ER with a painted Pokémon livery


Joshua Paul Dale (Profile)

THE manhole covers outside Joshua Paul Dale’s front door sport bright portraits of manga characters. Hello Kitty appears on construction barriers at the end of his road, alongside various cute cartoon frogs, monkeys, ducks and more.

Dale lives in Tokyo, epicentre of a “cutequake” that has conquered mass media (the Pokémon craze, which began in 1996, is now one of the highest-grossing media franchises) and encroaches, at pace, upon the wider realm.…

To continue reading, subscribe today with our introductory offers

View introductory offers

No commitment, cancel anytime*

Offer ends 28th October 2023.

*Cancel anytime within 14 days of payment to receive a refund on unserved issues.

Inclusive of applicable taxes (VAT)


Existing subscribers

Sign in to your account