Creators can’t control how their creations are received once they enter the world. Case in point, one of the key people behind the popular and long-running Yakuza series apparently had no idea how many people, especially women, found the series’ recurring, one-eyed character Goro Majima to be so damn sexy.
Majima first appeared all the way back in the PlayStation 2’s original 2005 Yakuza as the head of the Majima Family and a lieutenant of Futoshi Shimano. In that game, he becomes a bit obsessed with protagonist Kazuma Kiryu because Kiryu refuses to fight him when provoked, leading to Majima following around and ambushing him to get him to fight back.
Majima has since appeared in many Yakuza / Like a Dragon games and become pretty popular in his own right. But apparently, Yakuza series producer and director Hiroyuki Sakamoto had no idea how many of you find Majima to be downright attractive.
In an interview with Rock Paper Shotgun, Sakamoto was asked what his favorite thing was from Like a Dragon: Ishin! (an upcoming remake of a formerly Japan-only Yakuza spin-off set in 1800s Japan). And his answer was so funny that it reportedly made his translator crack up.
Sakamoto told RPS that back when they were developing the original 2014 version of Ishin!, they were having trouble picking which Yakuza characters to include. They wanted to create an “all-star cast” but weren’t sure who should be in the game, so they asked fans and went with who was the most popular.
“When we finished it [the popularity contest], we did the announcement of the results in Shinjuku, in front of this place called Alta—a big gathering place in Shinjuku, if you’re unfamiliar with it,” Sakamoto explained. “And I think we did the top five, or top 10 people and we had it on a big screen and it was, like, a big announcement.”
And when the number-one result was revealed to be Majima, the crowd’s reaction caught Sakamoto and others off guard.
“There was just this huge horde of female fans that all just screamed and screamed. And at that moment, we were like, ‘Wait a minute, girls like Majima this much? Is he that popular with the ladies?!’”, Sakamoto recalled with a smile.
When it comes to fictional paramours, it seems many people don’t want a boring dude in a suit or your average tough guy, but instead someone who’s a bit more out there. Or maybe they were all really big Mark Hamill fans. Wait, let me explain. In the original (unbeloved) Western PS2 dub of Yakuza, Majima was voiced by Luke Skywalker himself, Mark Hamill. But Hamill, all these years later, doesn’t seem to remember Yakuza or that he was in it! Anyway, that’s probably not why everyone finds Majima sexy. It’s probably his devilish smile, cool outfits, and sick eye patch. This isn’t rocket science.