There's nothing more heartwarming than seeing a little boy and his cute, fuzzy, pink pet bear – even if that bear is a little violent and bloodthirsty.
Gloomy Bear is designed by Japanese graphic designer Mori Chack (website is in Japanese), who considered it an alternative to kawaii merchandise, put out by companies such as Sanrio and Disney. Chack believes that humans and animals aren't destined to get along since animals are wild by nature.
Indeed, Gloomy Bear is often depicted with bloody fangs and claws and attacking his owner, Pity Boy. Strangely enough, he's still rather charming- even when he's munching on poor Pity Boy's head.
Now, you can own a little piece of Gloomy Bear. Dark Horse offers a bunch of cool Gloomy Bear products. The journal has a sturdy hard cover and retails for $9.99. It contains a decent amount of pages on which to write. There are lots of funny images of Gloomy Bear alternately tormenting and loving Pity Boy. The Gloomy Bear stationery is as adorably morbid. It comes with eight letter sheets, six envelopes, and one sticker sheet, and retails for $4.99.
The coolest items without a doubt are the T-shirts. There are four T-shirt designs for both men and women. The camouflage style and bright green shirts are for men, while the black and light blue T-shirts are for women. The men's shirt sizes range from M to XXL and retail for $24.99, while the women's shirt sizes range from L to XL and retail for $29.99.
Wearing one of these T-shirts will definitely attract people's attention, especially from a younger, hip crowd. I received the black shirt to review and took it for a test drive at the touristy Third Street Promenade. I was at the Levi's Store browsing for jeans when an employee said to me, "I like your shirt." Some time later a fellow patron asked me, "I love your shirt. Where did you get it?"
While the journal and stationery are amusing, and much cheaper than the shirts, neither is actually useful to adults. They're a little too cutesy and appeal more to tweens and teens. If you're going to get some Gloomy Bear merchandise, definitely go with the T-shirts. You can't really go wrong with T-shirts. Everybody wears them. They're soft, comfortable, and in this case, have cool images of a bloody teddy bear that's sure to turn a few heads.
Click on the thumbnails below for a more detailed image.