In Japan, a new character has gone viral amid the coronavirus pandemic. Its name is Amabie, and it’s a mythical creature said to repel plagues and sicknesses.
Amabie — “a beak-nosed, long-locked mythical mermaid monster,” according to AFP — has become a mascot for heroes amid the coronavirus pandemic. People have pushed for Amabie to help end the virus using social media channels.
According to CNET, the creature is a humanoid fish “yokai” — which means “demon” or “spirit.”
The creature — which AFP identifies as a female — has roots in ancient samurai history. Amabie reportedly appeared before the samurai in the southern Kumamoto prefecture and warned of the spread of an infectious virus.
Amabie told the samurai to draw a picture of her and show it people so that they would all be protected.
So began the “#Amabiechallenge.” People are now drawing the creature to help push the coronavirus away from the modern world.