A giant, fire-breathing robot has taken over part of Osaka's city hall.
The metal monster, Giant Torayan, stands over three stories tall and can spew 6m-long jets of flame from its lips. Its baby face makes it the perfect instrument for striking terror into the hearts of the 2.6m residents of the Japanese metropolis.
Constructed of steel, aluminium and brass, the robot is the brainchild of Japanese artist Kenji Yanobe, who describes it thus: "This Giant Torayan doll is the ultimate child's weapon, as it sings, dances, breathes fire and follows only those orders given by children."
Torayan's remote control unit also looks like a baby's head. It contains a computer that only recognises voice commands issued by kids, according to Yanobe. It can flail its arms about, turn its head and utter a high-pitched wail.
The robot has been exhibited at different venues in Japan in recent years, including Tokyo's popular Roppongi Hills complex (where the photo above was taken).
Torayan is a stock character in Yanobe's works and was originally inspired by a puppet that belonged to his father, a ventriloquist.
It's slated to stick around city hall until 12 October as part of the Aqua Metropolis Osaka 2009 festival, a celebration of the city's canals and rivers.
This seems to be the year for giant-robot construction projects in Japan, with an 18m Gundam robot built in Tokyo, and a monument to Gigantor going up in Kobe. Whatever could the Japanese be planning?