Reggie Fils-Aime is the head of Nintendo of America. He’s a Haitian, broad shouldered, slightly stiff kind of guy. He’s not very charismatic. He’s not the most photogenic man. He’s so un-cool that it actually makes him… well, kind of cool. So why do we love Reggie? Because he tries so hard anyway!
We love Reggie’s awkward jokes and odd quotes (“My body is ready!”) like we love an unusual uncle. But I think what endears us even more is that although Reggie seems to know his weaknesses, he tries to power past them. He’s a total geek (nerd?) in that he is obviously very competent in the technicalities of his job and leadership position, but could do with a little help in the social graces. But that doesn’t stop him from being the figurehead of the American branch of Nintendo and attempting, desperately it seems sometimes, to crack jokes (“I feel like a purple Pikmin!”)
Mr. Satoru Iwata is a little different. He’s the head of Nintendo’s main headquarters in Japan. Like Reggie, Mr. Iwata is not the coolest kid on the block. He’s also part of the older generation of Nintendo. But he also has the added dynamic that he is Japanese, with all of the cultural differences that come with it. He politely bows when addressing customers. He wears white gloves while unpacking the Wii U. He has a formal, but somehow playful demeanor. He’s willing to bring out a silly, very Japanese sense of humor. Heck, I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m a huge fan of Lego Iwata from the latest Nintendo Direct and his tribute to the “Iwata Banana Stare”.
Both Reggie and Mr. Iwata are lovable in the most awkward, cringworthy ways. But who are we kidding? We love to see their antics whenever we can! So here’s to Reggie and Mr. Iwata! The Nintendo Big-Wigs with enough heart to be silly and play in their own ways!