More and more international creatives are taking to the fictional, half-lion half-fish statue that’s also the national mascot for the island city state of Singapore.
Cartoon Network’s We Bare Bears is the latest production to join the mythical Merlion’s list of on-screen cameos, which include fellow animated series’ Yu-Gi-Oh! and Phineas and Ferb, blockbuster rom-com Crazy Rich Asians, and even Nintendo’s popular video game, Animal Crossing.
The We Bare Bears’ episode, released in Asia on Aug 9 — Singapore’s National Day — features the bears hiding behind the Merlion statue while sneaking into an aquarium, which could be a nod to the creatures’ designer, an aquarium curator.
The series’ creator, Daniel Chong, said he was inspired to include the statue in the show after a trip home last year. The former Disney/Pixar animator’s parents hail from Singapore, and moved to the US in the 1970s.