The Taco Bell Anime Commercial Cameo Only YouTubers Will Notice

To the average fan of fast food giant Taco Bell — and especially to the average fan of their Nacho Fries — the new Taco Bell ad video posted to anime streaming service CrunchyRoll's Twitter account might appear to be nothing more than an anime-themed announcement. Specifically an announcement that their Mexican-American mashup of French fries sprinkled with Mexican seasonings and served with a side of warm nacho cheese sauce is coming back to a Taco Bell near you (via AdWeek). Now, there's no denying that as far as fast-food-related social media alerts go, this one is sure to be well-received — who could be mad about more opportunities to eat fries and cheese?

However, the most exciting news here may not be the highly anticipated return of this fry fan favorite. Not only does this ad take the form of an impressively stylized anime movie trailer, but it features a cameo that perhaps only a specific type of YouTuber will notice. 

A Nacho Fry anime Easter egg

Since 2018, Taco Bell has been promoting its Nacho Fries with movie-style trailers, all of which are highly realistic, highly compelling teasers for movies that do not actually exist. The latest, "Fry Force," is anime-themed — an attempt to cut through the "clutter" of Olympics-related marketing through an intentional "fumble" of what AdWeek notes would otherwise be expected at this moment from advertising. Simply put, "Fry Force" does not involve sports. Rather, it's about far more primal matters: love, loss, and family. And, of course, Taco Bell's Nacho Fries. 

In the ad, a group of young adults enjoying some Nacho Fries on the beach is rudely and terrifyingly interrupted by a gargantuan monster. "I know what it's like to lose something you love," says Rei, who lost her brother, Kosuke, to that very monster. "I won't let it happen again," Rei vows, as she summons her team of anime warriors to avenge the continuing horror. 

But before we even get to the denouement, which involves Rei admitting, "Guess I'm just hungry," a brief cityscape scene reveals the image of "VTuber" Gawr Gura. (VTubers are YouTubers who are actually virtual animated avatars, a phenomenon mainly popular in Japan, per Sora News 24.) Unsurprisingly, actual YouTubers and anime fans have been tweeting about how stoked (and surprised) they are that a big fast food chain would include such a niche reference.