Have you been to Doraemon’s Secret Gadgets Expo? I’ve only been there recently, and it’s the perfect time to go.
The 100 life-sized Doraemon statues and gadgets arrived in Jakarta and was opened to public a little over a month ago, on November 28, 2014, organized by the character’s license holder Animation International Ltd. Previously, it has toured major cities in Hong Kong, China, Malaysia, Taiwan, and other Asian countries.
I thought it’ll be super crowded in the beginning weeks of the 100-day expo, especially during the weekends. I kept this in mind right after watching Stand By Me ドラえもん at right about the same time: The crowd for the film was insane – all tickets were sold out for the weekend … but we did manage to see it when it first came out on December 13, 2014, albeit sitting on separate seats.
Now that the hype has died down, I finally got the chance to see the Expo on a weekday last week, and it was really just us in there the whole time, so we had the place at liberty – no need to worry taking turns to take pictures ;)
So if you’re like me and you haven’t seen the robot cat face to face by now, it’s the best time to go see him. It’ll not just be about each of the 100 Doraemon figurines holding 100 different gadgets in his hand, which are so fun to identify – there are also memorable scenes from Nobita’s home, school, neighborhood, and his future.
So hurry before the Expo closes on March 8, 2015. If you need directions to Ancol Beach City, scroll to the bottom of the post for a route on Google Maps from where you are.
We enjoyed a 20% discount by using a BCA credit card. The standard price for adults is IDR 99,000 each, and it’s IDR 55,000 for children ages 5 to 12.
Before this Expo, I never knew that Doraemon was originally yellow (‘cuz in the comics it’s all just black and white, right?). He was literally scared to blue after the horrible tragedy of having his ears bitten by mice. The doctor in the hospital removed his ears completely as they became worse and ever since then, he’s always blue and afraid of mice.
If you live anywhere across Asia, I’m sure you can agree that growing up with the cultural icon has taught you many important life lessons you’ll carry on till the rest of your adult lives:
- We don’t have Doraemon’s pocket, so we have to do everything by ourselves to meet our desired goals. In the real life, we don’t have that magic tools to help us fix all the things, so we have to work hard so that we can meet our desired goals.
- Be friendly and intelligent. Doraemon is very friendly and intelligent, not to mention long-suffering because of Nobita’s antics. In real life, people usually think of the bad behaviors of others, but if you follow Doraemon’s habits, you will focus on others’ good points and have better relationships.
- If you fall down, pick yourself up, dust yourself off, carry the lessons forward. Due to this malfunction, Doraemon performed badly and nobody wanted to hire him, until baby Sewaishi pushed the button. His parents were a bit reluctant, but since Sewashi liked him, they hired Doraemon, and he took care of him until Sewaishi himself send him to the past to take care of his father, Nobita.
- Absorb what’s useful; reject the rest. Nobita’s character flaws are lazy, uncoordinated, dim-witted, frail, plain-looking, unlucky, and bad at sports. Despite his flaws, Nobita possesses some unique talents such as his unrivaled workmanship and ability to weave intricate string figures. Later Nobita can absorb what’s useful and become expert in robotics to fix Doraemon.
- Whatever doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger. Although Nobita is usually portrayed as being cowardly, he has often risked his life to help save others or even entire civilizations.
- Be responsible at times. It’s not what’s on your plate, it’s how you eat it. Nobita also has a talent for finding unusual applications for Doraemon’s gadgets, and to abuse them, which usually gets him into trouble. He was responsible at times. Everything we do depends on how we react to it 90%, and the outside situation only 10%.
- We cannot go back to change our past, so we change the future by doing our best today. Nobita becomes expert in robotics to fix Doraemon. This event becomes single most important event in human history. So important that time police prohibits anyone from future to go into this time. We have to do today our best.
- Don’t seek to be better than others; seek to be better than yourself. After reflecting on one event about his birthday, Giant thought of himself why he wasn’t popular among his peers. After getting a lecture from Doraemon to see what an unruly character he is, Giant realize that he should have been a better person and he begs Doraemon to give him another chance.
- Don’t take life too seriously, or you’ll never get out alive. Suneo is also very self-conscious about his height, being the shortest kid in his class. If you feel like Suneo, please don’t take it too seriously. Be happy with what you have and show your talents out at their best!
- Have a personal mission you can be proud of. Success is a journey, not a destination. Doraemon succeeds on his mission, as seen in several episodes in which they travel to the future and the short Nobita’s the Night before a Wedding. Nobita eventually marries Shizuka and has a son who, in a generational role reversal, bullies Giant’s son.
By the end of the Expo, you’ll find tons of cute merchandises of the cutie bot waiting to be brought home. The most notable one was the collection of Doraemon plushies dressed in all 12 Chinese horoscope costumes … and I simply couldn’t resist him dressed like a pig >< I mean seriously. I’m going there again just to buy the pig-Dora plushie. But otherwise, here are some adorable merchandises I scouted online and am completely lusting over:
Do you have a favorite Doraemon gadget as a child? What about now?
Doraemon 100 Secret Gadgets Expo
M – S 10:00am – 10:00pm
(from 28 November 2014 until 8 March 2015)