Let’s go to the movies: Coco and Kimi

Coco LaBouche & Angelica, from rugrats.wikia.com

I sat down and watched the glorious Rugrats in Paris film today, and it left with with some thoughts about some names that eventually spawned this blog post.

For those not familiar with the Rugrats franchise, it follows a group of 12-month-ish babies (Tommy turned 1 in the pilot, and it’s hinted that all the others are older than him) who in the series go on all these outlandish adventures without their parents hardly noticing. This time, the film follows their adventures as they go off to Euroreptarland in the central Paris (Eurodisney spoof?). It was released in 2000, and was an immediate hit with myself, given that I was the target audience at the time.

Rewatching it today reminded me of how much I used to hate the name Coco.

But I had good reason to.

Coco LaBouche is an evil baby-hating character and primary villain in the film and she also happens to be the top gal at the kiddie-aimed Euroreptarland, for reasons that still escape me. Poor career choices doesn’t quite cover it.

For those interested, la bouche is french for mouth.

Since the character was French, one could presume the name Coco was chosen for the character as an English-person-speaking friendly French name. Plus, one of the best known Cocos was Coco Chanel, who was French.

It’s also worth noting that there is a Japanese gymnast at the 2012 Olympics with the name, but she spells it Koko (surname is Tsurumi). There is a similar Japanese name, Kioko, which means child born with happiness.

These days, I don’t particularly hate the name Coco anymore, although the character remains just as unpleasant. Time heals all wounds, maybe?

Whilst we’re on the subject of the film, it also sees the introduction of another new member of the baby-gang, Kimi; she is the same as as Chuckie (who is slightly older than the other babies at almost-2).

Kimi has Japanese heritage, and I remember thinking after watching the film that Kimi was a cool Japanese name, and it appears it actually is, meaning righteous/noble. However, it appears the character’s name Kimi is not short for Japanese pick Kimiko, but for Kimberly.

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