Beloved cartoon characters Masha and the Bear to appear on Russian commemorative coins Beloved cartoon characters Masha and the Bear to appear on Russian commemorative coins Beloved cartoon characters Masha and the Bear to appear on Russian commemorative coins 24 October 2021 09:45 AM: The Bank of Russia has issued commemorative coins featuring characters from the Russian animation series ‘Masha and the Bear’, which has become widely popular across the world over the past decade.

The regulator announced the issuance of a silver coin with a face value of three rubles and base metal coins with a denomination of 25 rubles.

The three-ruble coin, which is made of 925 sterling silver, is 39 millimeters across, and 7,000 of the commemorative coins will be produced. The central bank has issued 850,000 25-ruble coins with a color coating, and 150,000 non-colored coins of the same denomination.

“The coin features characters from the famous Russian cartoon: the little girl Masha and her friend the Bear, a former circus artist,” the regulator said in a press release.

“They are shown against the background of a room in the Bear’s house, where the cheerful and resourceful girl likes to play.” 

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‘Masha and the Bear’ is an animated TV series, which is loosely based on a Russian folk story of the same name. The plot of the cartoon focuses on the adventures of a lively mischievous girl and her protective guardian bear that always keeps her safe from disasters.

The pilot episode was released in 2009 and the fifth season premiered in July. The cartoon has become internationally renowned. It has been translated into 42 languages, and purchased by such media giants as NBCUniversal, Netflix, Sony Pictures, Google, France TV and many others.

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The show’s YouTube channel has 35.7 million subscribers, while one of the episodes, ‘Recipe for Disaster’ was viewed 4.4 billion times, turning it into the most viewed non-music video on YouTube.

Earlier this year, ‘Masha and the Bear’ became one of the most globally popular shows among its animated peers, according to the metrics of the media research agency Parrot Analytics.

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In 2018, The Times released a bizarre report that described the cartoon as Kremlin propaganda for kids. The article was based on an interview with an Estonian professor published by Finland’s Helsingin Sanomat paper the year before. The report claimed ‘Masha and the Bear’ was creating a positive image of Russia in children’s minds and labeled the main character as Putinesque.

This prompted a wave of social media criticism, with some accusing one of Britain’s oldest news outlets of reaching a new low in anti-Russian hysteria.

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